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Portland has a brilliant way of turning the ordinary upside down. From the world’s smallest park to a cookie delivery service, and a proper vacuum museum, limiting the list to just five is the most challenging part! But as everyone who visits Bridgetown probably already has their own list of weird stuff to gawk at, we’ve compiled a list of lesser-known weird stuff; call it a guide to the weirdest of weird.
The Woodstock Mystery Hole is part of the Universal Church O’ Fun… somewhere in Southeast Portland. No one is certain why it’s there or who built it, but this underground tunnel is suspected to have been created by “natural forces.” Mystery tour guide Barron Mind will tell you that upon descending into the portal, your body will change sizes and may not ever return to its normal size. The mystery tunnel continues down further than anyone with their wits about them is willing to travel. Hence the mystery. Brave souls will encounter the “Black Obsidian Mirror of Higher Truth”, “Enchanting Vapors of Encouragement”, and a “Giant Double Arch” that is allegedly situated in alignment with the North Star. Inquisitive individuals are encouraged to make an appointment via email prior to arrival.
Sushi Mazi, buried between all those giant new apartment buildings in the heart of foodie heaven (one of many) on Southeast Division, is home to the famous Grasshopper Sushi Roll. The head sushi chef at this cozy restaurant likes to experiment with fun new techniques, so if you want the full experience, be prepared to order something more interesting than a California Roll. Adventurous patrons can choose from ‘off the beaten path’ menu items such as the “Pop Rock Roll” — a spicy tuna roll sprinkled with actual pop rocks, or the “Real Grasshopper Sushi” — served as a single piece for $2.50, described on the menu as “Food number 101 you must have before you die!” Well, if you put it that way… YOLO!
For weird in a good way, like, a positive social change way, track down a Blind Cafe dining event. This is a dinner and live music event held in 100% darkness, encouraging blind awareness discussion. “The Experience” is catered by both sighted and legally blind staff, coordinated to alter the way you relate to your world “without the distraction of your visual conditioning, social etiquette, and cell phones.” What’s on the menu? Since Blind Cafe events happen all over the world, the ingredients are sourced locally and meals are curated by local chefs. Don’t expect pop rocks and grasshoppers, though; the strangeness of the experience has more to do with the environment than the food. Do expect to come away with a new appreciation for sight and limited first-hand knowledge of what it’s like to perform an everyday activity free from visual distraction. Events have previously been held at the Alberta Abbey — the big brick event space on the corner of NE Mallory and Alberta Street.
The Roxy is a quirky diner with ordinary food. By no means is the food bland, but the atmosphere is the real draw at this landmark 24-hour greasy-spoon diner. Expect “Delicious Big Fat Food”, coffee that will keep you from falling asleep during the cab ride home, diverse clientele, “Smart Ass Servers”, and a “Jukebox From Hell!” The “hangover helper” menu items have fun names like “Arrogant French Toast” and “A Li’l Somethin’ on the Side.” The Roxy’s charming personality is not to be missed, and best experienced after one too many drinks and a desperate attempt to keep the fun going.
And if you have a problem with weird bugs in your home, call The Killers for expert pest control service you can rely on!