Day 40-41 – Corvallis OR

Corvallis is a college town (Oregon State), but it’s the kind that’s relatively quiet in the summer time. We deployed our bikes onto the friendly streets and well-designed bike paths and found our way to the food coop to restock.

The campus offered vast expanses of well-kept lawns for us to spread out with our friends and throw frisbees to each other. It also offered just the right trees to shade us for a lunch time picnic.

We were staying with our friend Heather, who put us up in a boarding house she manages. She was part of a close circle of friends in La Crosse until she got the urge to move to Oregon. In fact, a bunch of La Crosse people jumped on the Oregon Trail at around the same time, and now they all live in Corvallis.

Steve and Diane met us there, and the owner of a La Crosse head shop stopped by with his companion. While some of us gathered at Heather’s house, it was observed that between those who were visiting and those who were transplanted, there were twelve La Crosse people in the room.

One of the drawbacks of doing such a whirlwind trip is that you can only do a tiny portion of the things you really want to. One festival we regret missing is Da Vinci Days, a celebration of creativity and inventiveness.

On our way to the coop this morning we passed the festival grounds during an electric car race. These innovative vehicles looked like a cross between hi-tech soap-box cars and electric go-carts.

Late in the day, we went to see a covered bridge on the edge of town, and it happened to be on the route of the Kinetic Sculpture Race. We saw huge pedal-powered contraptions come by, resembling something that combines parade floats and large animatronic creatures. There were costumed teams of people to propel, guide and navigate each machine.

As the racers disappeared into the sunset, it was a whimsical close to our full day in Corvallis.

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