The Fat Lamb Fiber Festival and County Fair is held every 3rd week-end in May in Scio, Oregon. It's a great home-town, country experience where the locals come out and share the best of the best of goods, services, and products that are coveted all over the world. I think my favorite is the national sheep dog trials competition.
Lebanon has a great community organization called "Build Lebanon Trails". They connect local parks through paved trail ways that offer miles of safe foot travel around our community.
If you're into serious hiking, you should check out alltrails.com
Probably the most popular walking area is Cheadle Lake Park (pronounced "chee-dl'"). It was build with with private donations, then turned over to the City of Lebanon. It has paved and gravel trails that surround the man-made Cheadle Mill Pond with several donated benches, and fishing docks. The trails connect parking lots on both the North and South ends of the park.
Non-motorized boats and watercraft are allowed in Cheadle Lake. But, be very careful because the water is thick with marine vegetation. It is considered unsafe for swimming of any kind.
Fishing is allowed at Cheadle Lake; however, catch-and-release is recommended because, as a former mill pond, arsenic and heavy metal presence is higher than you would find in other Oregon natural waterways.
There are several stations along the path where you can learn about the history of Cheadle Lake, and wildlife and vegetation you can find. The lake is home to Oregon Box Turtles, nutria, several species of duck and goose, Blue or Grey Heron, and several native species of bird. Landscaping has been carefully selected to invite wildlife and preserve native habitats.
Gill's Landing is located off Grant Street and connected to the east side of River Park. At the far end of the parking lot, and along the river, there is a network of wooded trails that create the impression of being out in the Oregon wilderness, when, in reality, you're surrounded by Lebanon neighborhoods. The trails are wide enough for walking and accommodating off-road bicyclists who enjoy the well trodden path but sharp turns and small hills and valleys.
There are three dog parks/play areas in the Lebanon area.
Most recently, Bob Smith Memorial Park has a fenced area designated for dog play that has been custom designed for fur-baby recreation. They even have a Facebook page. This park was built in 2018 by the Laura Gillot, Keller-Williams Home Team.
Waterloo Park, off the Santiam Highway, heading east of Lebanon, or, taking Russell Drive to River Road, has a designated fenced area for dogs. It also has extensive trails surrounding the park where dogs can explore on-leash. There is parking close by, and public bathrooms.
While Mark's Slough is not officially a dog exercise area, they have a large 3/4 fenced field where dogs are free to run. There is a paved path skirting the perimeter of the recreation area. There is a paved parking lot, but there are no bathroom facilities available.
McDowell Creek is an amazing sanctuary of what people really expect to find when they come to rural Oregon. There are foot trails to three spectacular waterfalls, well maintained, and generally easy for most people to enjoy. Below the picnic area just out of sight of the paved parking lot, there is a lesser fall with several, succeeding pools, great for swimming and playing in the water on hot days. There is a primitive bathroom facility in the parking lot (advised to bring your own toilet paper and hand sanitizer).
Since the creek is fed by mountain run-off, the most impressive time to visit the falls is late Spring. By early September, the water-flow is sometimes down to a trickle. But, there are a number of safe pools to bring the kids to swim in. You can hunt for newts (poisonous: wash your hands with soap after touching one, or you might get sick) and crawdads.
It's just about a half hour drive from Lebanon.
Find it on Google Maps
We really love our community. People come from all over the world to visit our nest in the corner of one of the most fertile valleys. From here, you within two to three hours drive of anything you could possibly imagine experiencing. And best of all, it's still quiet, relaxed and peaceful.
People often stop in and ask us, "What do you recommend to do, or see, or join around here?" Here's the list.
THINK BRAIN CANDY Books & Tea
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678 S. Main St
We're located downtown in Lebanon, Oregon, just past the Kuhn Movie Cinema. If you're from the South part of town, that means going North on Park Street to Vine St (the big brick castle-looking church), turn left on Vine, then left on Main, and go back two blocks. Kuhn is in the middle of the block on the right, and we're right past them. Look for the sign in the store window "BOOKS" and the Think Brain Candy logo.