How Do You Say “Oregon”?
OR-eh-gun or OR-eh-gin (the “g” is a hard g… like “goat”… not the “juh” sound)
Just please do not say “Or-ee-gone”
What are the main geographical regions of Oregon?
The Coast (yellow), The Willamette Valley (Orange), The Gorge (gray), Central Oregon (blue), Eastern Oregon (red), and Southern Oregon (green)
How do you say “Willamette Valley”, “Chinook”, “Wallowas”, or “The Dalles” ?
Willamette Valley: “Will-am-et” (it’s NOT like the name William - my brain always liked to add the extra “i”, and the “ette” is only one syllable.. not “et-ee”). It also should be noted that some people just call it “The Valley”
Chinook: “Shi-nook” (the “Ch” Indian names have the “Sh” sound)
Wallowas: “Wuh-low-uhs” (the “ow” sound is like “Ow -that hurt!)
The Dalles: The “Dal-z” (not to be confused with Dallas… which there is one of those too)
There are lots of hard to pronounce names, and my friends still get a laugh (now and again) when I just don’t know the right way to say it - but I do try!
How do people drive in Oregon?
Well, different people have different opinions on who drives better in the snow or the rain, but FAST would describe pretty much everyone. Highway driving is generally 55mph, but there are areas where you get to go 70mph. My advice: stick with the flow of traffic best you can while being mindful of the speed limit signs
What are Jo-Jos?
I wouldn’t know what these are either because I’ve always called them “potato wedges.” Delicious, fried pieces of potatoes that obviously taste just as good, no matter the name.
Beach, Mountains, Snow, Desert, Rainforest, Rivers, Lakes, AND Waterfalls?
I always like to describe Oregon as “dramatic” and not in a bad way. Oregon checks pretty much every geography box, and it is pretty awesome to be able to drive from the Pacific Ocean to the mountains to a fertile agriculture valley over more mountains to the high desert - all within a few hours.
Can you pump your own gas?
This one takes some getting used to if you are from the other 48 states in the US. Unless the county has a population of 40,000 or less, in Oregon you can’t pump your own gas (diesel is a different story). So, all you have to do is drive up, turn your car off, pop the cap, and an attendant will ask what you want. (I usually just say “Fill, Regular” and hand them my credit card. But you can request the dollar amount or gallon amount that you want.)
What are the people in Oregon called?
Oregonians. (OR-eh-go-nee-ans) And let me tell you, they’re a pretty great bunch.