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Japanese American Community: Japanese Americans have been a vital part of Portland's history for generations. Connect with Portland's rich Japanese-American heritage at sites around the city including the Nichiren Buddhist Temple of Portland, Japanese American Historical Plaza, and Friendship Circle.
Chinese American Community: From 1880 to 1910 Portland’s Chinatown was second in size only to San Francisco’s. Today, the growing Chinese population is spread throughout the city, as are a variety of Chinese-owned businesses, Chinese schools, and activities. A year-round wonder, the Lan Su Chinese Garden is an authentic Ming Dynasty-style garden built by Suzhou artisans that brings together art, architecture, design, and nature in this 2,000-year-old Chinese tradition. The garden takes up an entire block of the city’s historic Chinatown district.
Jewish Community: Portland is home to more than 40,000 Jewish residents, and Jewish history in Oregon goes back to 1849. In times of social upheaval and political uncertainty, museums like The Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education are more relevant than ever. Explore the rich history and ongoing resiliency of Oregon’s diverse Jewish community with interactive exhibits and experiences for all ages.
Indian American Community: Portland and neighboring suburbs are home to a thriving and growing population of almost 10,000 Indian American residents. The India Cultural Association (ICA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing Indian cultural awareness in Portland. The Association was established in 1980 and hosts the popular India Festival every year in mid-August to celebrate India’s independence day.
Arab American Community: Oregon’s Arab American community is one of the fastest growing in the U.S. More than 31,000 Arab Americans are living in Oregon. Their diverse presence and rich culture are felt across the region through community centers, festivals, popular restaurants, and other social and educational events.
Keeping Portland Weird: In Portland, being dubbed “weird” is never an insult. Locals delight in enjoying the pleasantly unexpected, whether it be watching adults zoom down an extinct volcano in soapbox derby cars, or crafting deliciously strange new types of doughnuts. Do as locals do and embrace the city’s quirky vibes using this guide to Portland’s weird culture
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