My wife has been doing mail-order with Swan Island for a few years, so it is probably inevitable that we would attend their annual dahlia festival. For me, our non-stop route from Santa Rosa to Portland made it pretty easy, plus I had never been to Portland and wanted to learn why everybody loves it. We got out to Canby on the Saturday before Labor Day. From the I-5, the path was pretty well-marked. The parking was extremely efficient. We wandered just a bit until one of the ladies advised us to catch the indoor exhibition before it got too crowded. The variety of colors, sizes and configurations of dahlias was extraordinary. We took lots of pictures and made lots of notes for placing orders. Our last step indoors was to place an order, which was also done very efficiently. We managed to get volume discounts and freebies, which always leaves one feeling like they did well. The outdoor plantings are just too overwhelming to describe. The colors go on for acres and no camera can do the scene justice, The festival also featured a few food booths that we did not try and a really decent band. Over the course of the weekend, I also learned why everyone loves Portland. I expect that I will be back to both.
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