PDX vs. TUS – Postcards from the Edge

Blue Star Donuts in Portland

Best Portland Donuts

Circle of Food lives in Tucson but lusts for other cooler locales. On a recent vacation, here’s how Portland compared to Tucson.

View from Airplane
PDX – green
TUS – brown

Airport to City Center
PDX – Red Line TriMet light rail
TUS – rent a car or take a taxi

Transit
PDX – Thriving throughout with light rail, buses and street cars
TUS – limited street car route; bus service routes often threatened to be cut

River
PDX – The Willamette River runs through the city dividing NE from NW and SE from SW
TUS – River Road divides the foothills from the rest of us + the Rillito provides a path for jogging, walking and biking

Bridge
PDX – Six bridges connect east to west
TUS – Snake bridge to nowhere

Cuisine
PDX – Thai
TUS – Mexican

Signature Food
PDX – Donut – While VooDoo Donuts get all the publicity, Blue Star is made from classic French brioche dough with wildly opulent flavor combinations; recently named USA Today’s 10 Best Donuts
TUS – Sonoran hot dogs / tamales

Portland food carts are clustered all over town

Food-Cart-ism

Food Fun
PDX – food carts – stationary clusters throughout the city
TUS – food trucks

Eat & Drink
PDX – thriving food & brew scene
TUS – thriving food & brew scene

Say Cheese
PDX – Tillamook Cheese Factory
TUS – Blu, a Cheese Store

U-Pick
PDX – berries
TUS – peaches (Willcox)

Wine
PDX – nearby wine region
TUS – nearby wine region

Attire
PDX – wild patterned socks + hoodies
TUS – sandals + tank tops

Shopping
PDX – Made in Oregon stores here and there
TUS – Local First AZ

divine chocolate candy made in PDX

Moonstruck Chocolate Cafe – made in Portland

Genius Bar
PDX – block long store downtown across from Pioneer Square
TUS – cramped store in upscale La Encantada shopping center

Happening
PDX – Portland Saturday Market
TUS – Heirloom Farmers Market (Sun)

Sales Tax
PDX – None! Makes Portland a shopper’s paradise
TUS – 8.1%

Health
PDX – You can die with dignity, no need to prolong life with useless/costly treatments.
TUS – Urgent care on every corner as well as heart center, hand center, orthopedic surgery. They don’t call it “Old Pueblo” for nothing

Portland is dog friendly

photo – http://pawfi.com

Pups
PDX – Urban dogs welcome everywhere, many wearing raincoats
TUS – Loose dogs

Flora Dora
PDX – roses
TUS – cactus

Japanese
PDX – Japanese Garden
TUS – Yume Japanese Gardens of Tucson

Chinese
PDX – Lan Su Chinese Garden
TUS – Chinese Cultural Center

#1 Attraction
PDX – International Rose Test Garden – every color of the rainbow roses as far as the eye can see…breathtaking

PDX rose garden

Sumptuous Eye Candy

TUS – Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum – indoor/outdoor natural history museum and botanical garden and more; ranked on TripAdvisor.com as one of the Top 10 Museums in the country and the #1 Tucson attraction.

Art (both world class)
PDX – Portland Museum of Art
TUS – Tucson Museum of Art

Aviation
PDX – Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum
TUS – Pima Air & Space Museum

Frolic
PDX – Oregon Coast
TUS – Rocky Point

Peaks
PDX – Mt. Hood
TUS – Mt. Lemmon

Cycling
PDX – 3 weeks of Pedalpalooza
TUS – Cyclovia + El Tour de Tucson

Clothing Optional
PDX – World Naked Bike Ride Day (June 27)
TUS – No shoes, no shirts, no service

Portland has a tagline and book called Keep Portland Weird. I’m drawing a blank about a Tucson tagline (except – Go Cats!). Does Tucson have a tagline? Do you have more comparisons?

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