Emma John persists her sequence about Americas coolest municipalities with a tour to Portlands somewhat scruffier little sister for play, music and an endearing anarchism
The Slug Queens sum up the spirit of Eugene. Every time the Oregon township emcees an alternative elegance pageant- coinciding with, but independent of, the annual Eugene Celebration- in which outrageously costumed players vie for the coveted deed. The winners are differentiated out by a mix of anarchic originality, wry humor and passionate commitment to their context: the same calibers that stirs this residence so unique.
Two hours south of Portland, Eugene isn’t as urbane as that famously hipster city. This is a town of ballparks, trees and waterways, a hiking mecca that melds rapidly into the nearby mountains. It also feels somewhat scruffy: a former hotbed of hippies and revolutionaries whose revolutionary border lives on in its environmental agenda. The single most important climate change case in the US law courtsoriginates here, and the University of Oregon lure social activists from across the country.
A short saunter from campus is a revitalised downtown, with a 2,500 -seat performing arts venue- the Hult Center– a modern theatre and three independent cinemas.” A few years ago , not many people came and hung out downtown ,” says Gino Franco, make manager at the Oregon Contemporary Theatre, which expanded into its current opening in 2012.” But thanks to the growing prowess stage, and some new restaurants, it’s become a lot more friendly .”