Forest Grove has Something for Everyone
The city of Forest Grove sits on the western edge of Hillsboro, astride Oregon Highway 47. Home to more than 24,000 people, the area offers residents a small-town feel, thanks to its quaint downtown core and historic homes and buildings. However, Forest Grove’s proximity to both Highway 26 and Oregon Route 8, means the big city conveniences of Portland, Hillsboro, and Beaverton are just minutes away. These factors combine to make the city attractive for renters and investment property owners alike.
Forest Grove History
Settlers first came to the Forest Grove area in the early 1840’s and quickly established the Congregational Church. In 1848, two of the first settlers, Tabitha Brown and Harvey Clark, founded Tualatin Academy. The school initially served local children and housed orphans whose parents had died on the journey along the Oregon Trail. Years later, Tualatin Academy would be renamed Pacific University, which is still operating to this day.
Farming was the predominant occupation in those early days, and local growers transported their products to market down the Tualatin River by steamship or by rail after the first stop was established in 1869. The rail stop and activity at Pacific University spurred local economic development. The city of Forest Grove was officially incorporated in 1872, making it the first city in Washington County.
Forest Grove Today
Today, Forest Grove offers its residents the best of northwest living. From historic buildings to craft wine and beer to loads of outdoor fun, Forest grove has it all.
The center of Forest Grove’s historic downtown area is at the intersection of Pacific Avenue and Main Street. Many of these brick buildings date back to the late 1800s when the city experienced a development boom. More than 100 years later, many of these buildings remain very much unchanged and offer a glimpse into the city’s rich history.
These land and business developers also built grand homes located in three of the city’s historic districts. The Painter’s Woods, Clark, and Walker-Naylor Districts all feature stately turn-of-the-century homes in a variety of architectural styles.
In addition to history, Forest Grove residents can also enjoy some of the region’s best wine, beer, and spirits. The McMenamins Grand Lodge was once home to a Masonic and Eastern Star retirement home. Today, visitors can stay in one of the hotel’s 90 guestrooms, unwind in the soaking pool at the Ruby Spa, sip locally crafted beer and wine at the Doctor’s Office Bar, or watch live music on the expansive lawn.
Wine lovers can visit Apolloni Vineyards, Forest Grove’s award-winning winery. Using the finest Willamette Valley grapes grown in its vineyards, Apolloni makes a variety of red and white wines. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities throughout the year, including art events, tastings, and more.
Plenty of Outdoor Fun
Residents of Forest Grove can also take advantage of the area’s abundant outdoor activities. Just outside the city limits is Henry Hagg Lake, which is open year-round for hiking, fishing, and bird watching. Drive 25 minutes into the Tillamook State Forest, and you’ll find the Tillamook Forest Center. This interpretive center provides visitors with an in-depth look at Oregon forest management practices and an immersive experience into the historic Tillamook burn.
Cycling enthusiasts will love the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway, which gives riders an up-close look at the wonders of the Tualatin Valley. This 51-mile trail begins in Hillsboro, runs through rural Washington County, and on to Forest Grove and Banks before ending in Vernonia.
Great Local Schools
Forest Grove kids attend schools run for the Forest Grove School District. Made up of nine elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school, the district is one of the most diverse in Oregon. It also ranks higher than many other districts in the state.
Forest Grove also boasts a homegrown center of higher education. Pacific University has operated for 170 years and today offers several undergraduate and graduate degrees. The university has also made a reputation as a destination for graduates seeking careers in health fields.
Today, visitors can tour the tree-lined campus and see many of the university’s historic buildings. If you’re on campus, don’t miss Old College Hall, Pacific University’s first building. Originally constructed in 1850, it’s the oldest educational building still in use west of the Mississippi.
Want to Live in Forest Grove? We Can Help.
It’s no surprise why Forest Grove is such an attractive place to live. Between the history, local attractions, plenty of outdoor activities, and proximity to Portland, the city offers something for everyone.
If you’d like to live in Forest Grove, Rent Portland Homes by Darla Andrew can help. We work with many local property owners who have homes available to rent. To learn more, call us today at (503) 515-3170 or fill out the contact page on our website.
If you’re a Forest Grove property owner who’s interested in converting your home to a rental, we can also help. We’re a full-service property management company that will protect your investment while getting the return you need. Contact us today. We can’t wait to work with you!
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