When your husband's birthday is July 4th, you celebrate all weekend long.
This year, Z, myself, and a group of our friends rented a house in Government Camp, Oregon. We were late to the game in renting - so the Coast, etc. was booked solid - but Government Camp ended up being the perfect summer getaway.
Kicking things off Saturday morning, Z and I enjoyed perfectly spicy Bloody Marys at Ratskeller - a no-frills spot right in town with a giant patio, complete with corn hole, picnic tables, and a fire pit.
From there, we spent the day relaxing and greeting friends before we went to Mt. Hood Skibowl, a short walk from where we were staying. A ski resort during the winter, the park transforms into a summer playground during the warmer months - complete with Alpine Slides, which you take the ski lifts to get up to (sooo fun!), mini golf, tubing (on the grass), and more.
Before hitting the Alpine Slides, however, we indulged on the patio with beers and nachos. (Vegetarians: make sure to ask for the nachos without the meat chili - the menu doesn't mention it).
|Taking the ski lift up!|
On Sunday, we decided to be a little more low-key and our entire group setup camp at one of the picnic areas at Trillium Lake. We spent most of the day playing corn hole, card games, floating in the water, and exploring. Talk about an absolutely gorgeous area!
On Monday, before heading back to Portland, we popped into Hood River for the afternoon. After beers at Pfriem, we walked a block or two to have lunch at Solstice Wood Fire Cafe & Bar. After a short wait (they text you when your table's ready so you don't have to wait around), we somehow got lucky enough to score a table on their patio, despite our large group!
The pizza at Solstice was phenomenal. I enjoyed a small 10-inch pie of Cremini ($13), topped with Hood River Organic cremini mushrooms, goat cheese, shredded mozzarella, lemon zest, truffle oil, and herbs. It was delicious, but I loved Z's pie even more: he ordered the Country Girl Cherry ($14 for a 10-inch), topped with fresh cherries, Field Roast sausage (although the original pie comes with house-made chorizo), goat cheese, shredded mozzarella, and marinara sauce. The combination of the sweet, plump cherries with the salty sausage and cheese was incredible.
I washed down my pizza with a great summer cocktail, too - the Sweet Suzanne Basil Gimlet ($9), made with your choice of vodka or gin (I chose gin), basil simple syrup, and organic lime juice. It was refreshing, and perfectly strong.
We then sat by the river, ate Z's "homemade" (thanks, Betty Crocker) angel food birthday cake - complete with whipped cream and fresh berries - and then made the trip back to Portland. We went out to dinner in town, then enjoyed the fireworks on the waterfront.
It was an epic weekend spent with great friends in some wonderful towns here in Oregon. And all for such a great celebration!
How did you spend the July 4th weekend?