November in the Pacific Northwest is a vibrant time, both in nature and in the communities of the region. It is also a time to give thanks and to honor those who have made our way of life possible. Oregon provides many opportunities to honor the servicemen and women of our nation; be sure to check some of them out.
The Oregon Air & Space Museum
,in Eugene, contains an impressive collection of aircraft and other displays that reflect the history of aviation and the Air Force. One of its featured aircraft is a World War I Nieuport 17 single-seat fighter used by the Allied Forces. Other artifacts and collections help to offer a more intimate view of what being a veteran means. Visit www.oasm.info for details.
The privately operated Tillamook Air Museum, in Tillamook, provides another impressive array of restored aircraft and historical information regarding the nation’s Air Force; the museum itself is housed in an original 1942 wooden hangar. A trip to the gift shop is a must for any history, aviation or military enthusiast. For more information, go to www.tillamookair.com.
Come back down to earth with a trip to the Oregon Military Museum, located on the grounds of the Oregon National Guard’s Camp Withycombe. A variety of exhibits, interpretive programs and living history displays present a rich view of America’s military tradition and the proud service of its veterans with a special focus on the contributions of Oregonians. See www.ormilmuseum.org for more information.
To get a taste of veterans’ lives as they were actually lived, spend the day at Fort Stevens State Park and Historical Site with extensive grounds and the preserved structures of Fort Stevens providing natural beauty and a short step back in time. Active from the time of the Civil War through the end of World War II, Fort Stevens now serves as a perfect area for recreation and remembrance. Plan your trip at www.oregonstateparks.org/park_179.php.
Be sure to take some time this November to pay your respects to the men and women who have fought to protect our nation. Our veterans are the reason we have so much worth enjoying in this country, so get out and enjoy it – and remember the courage, resolve and sacrifice that made it possible.