Sellwood-Moreland is the type of neighborhood that you spend a whole day having fun in, wonder why you’ve never been before, and then end up scheming how to move there asap once you’ve returned home. It’s got that small-town feel that comes from once being it’s own city (it was annexed by Portland in 1893), with enough local flavor and fun to keep you coming back for more. Get there by bike on the Springwater Corridor, or via the Orange Line for a day full of fun—read on for more!
photo: dominique via yelp
What to See and Do
Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge
Birds to watch, snails to hunt, forests to hike… this wildlife refuge is a hidden gem in the busy city. Rescued from landfill status in the 1960’s, the 140+ acres include ponds, a wide variety of birds, native plant life and more. The easy 3 mile hike loop around the pond is a great way to take in viewpoints like the giant mural on the side of the Portland Memorial Mausoleum. Kids might enjoy the smaller Tadpole Pole, a short interpretive loop where they can spot frogs and salamanders.
SE Sellwood Blvd & SE 7th Avenue
The historic single screen theater opened in 1926 for vaudeville acts and silent films– today it shows “talkies” and first-run blockbusters (it’s updated the equipment, as well). Tickets are a steal and parents can grab a beer or wine along with concessions. While the once-plush seats might be a little rickety, it only adds to the ambiance. Pro tip– they only take cash at the box office!
6712 SE Milwaukie Ave.
Westmoreland Nature Park
A few years old, this natural park has a heavy focus on the good stuff– the outdoors! It’s one of crown jewels of Portland’s recent All-Natural Playground focus, designed to give kids the raw ingredients (i.e. nature) to create their own fun. You won’t find any see-saws or swings, but you will find giant logs, stones, rocks, a water channel where kids can manipulate the stream’s flow, and lots of natural material for building and playing. With a playground this fun, kids won’t even want to see a screen!
7530 SE 22nd Ave.
photo: jennifer via yelp
Oaks Amusement Park
This old amusement park is a vital part of any Portland summer– the coasters are thrilling, the concession stands are full of treats, and the roller skating rink is ready to roll at all times! It’s a great place for birthdays, barbecues, family get-togethers, or you can catch one of the many festivals that happen year-round. With a small train that thrills the 4 and under crowd, it’s great for all ages.
7805 SE Oaks Park Way
Sellwood Riverfront Park
With sandy access to the Willamette, an off-leash dog park, picnic tables, and nature trails, the Sellwood Riverfront Park holds the secret to a day of fun! Swimming, fishing, canoeing, a family BBQ, or just a day laying on the grass can all be done here. Lest you think the river isn’t swimmable, think again: thanks to decades of clean-up work and regular testing, the Willamette is assuredly safe. Just watch for currents the farther out you swim!
1212 SE Spokane St.
photo: the bull and the bee
Where to Shop
Sellwood is known for its excellent antique stores, but to cater more toward kids and teens, head to these picks:
The Bull and the Bee
An adorable baby boutique where you can stock up on gifts and necessities. With a focus on quality, sustainable, and fashionable goods, it’s the perfect place to find an perfect onesie, a new highchair, expertly made toys, or just some advice on teething. Great for babies, young children, and parents alike!
1540 SE Bybee Blvd.
A stylish consignment shop that offers high quality, gently used items for babies and kids up to age 8-10. Toys, gear, books and more can be found here as well. The play area makes the store a perfect place to stop with antsy kids–they can get their wiggles out and parents can have a moment to shop! Don’t miss the selection of new locally made items, as well.
8235 SE 13th Ave., Suite 1
photo: erin via yelp
Collage and Collage Outlet
With several locations around town, Collage is known for their excellent selections of art and craft supplies. Sellwood is now home to not one but two Collage stores, including their new Outlet where you can score discounts from 20-90% on all sorts of items! The perfect place to get inspired for a new project with the kids, whether they want to paint spring pots or create a piece to hang on the wall.
1634 SE Bybee Blvd
7907 SE 13th Ave.
Be honest—everyone loves socks. Protect your ankles from the chill and be oh-so-stylish with the huge range of socks at this store! Kids will love to choose their very own favorite pair, like puppy tongues, pirate ships, or baby seals. Teens and adults will find plenty to thrill, as well, in a huge range of styles and sizes like thigh-highs, anklets, seamless, and more. Who knew socks could be so fun?
3962 N. Mississippi Ave.
Portland, OR. 97227 (new location)
Oodles 4 Kids
A toy store with oodles of fun! Nestled right on Sellwood’s main drag, this shop offers games, puzzles, toys, books, and more for kids ages 0-12. Need a quick birthday present? They’re ready to help with the best science kit recommendation, a new outdoor game, or the perfect doll. Do your kids tend to come out of toy stores with a whole list of things they need? They will for sure here, so tell them to save up their coins–you’ll be back!
7727 SE 13th Ave.
Columbia Outlet Store
Ok, this isn’t a kid’s store, but if your kid loves snowboarding, jumping in puddles, or being outside at all, they are bound to find something they need here. And with deals regularly up to 75%, off parents will love it too! Outfit the whole family for the rain or next winter!
1323 SE Tacoma St.
photo: amara via yelp
Where to Eat
Tea Chai Te
A college project turned wild success, Tea Chai Té serves award-winning specialty teas along with kombucha, unique chai blends, tasty treats, and their totally photogenic (and super tasty!) bubble teas. The best location is right in Sellwood, located inside the historic red Caboose (once a bookstore). A surprisingly large amount of seating is inside, so don’t be shy!
7983 SE 13th Ave.
A step up from your neighborhood Thai restaurant, Jade Teahouse serves Vietnamese and Thai with influences from French Colonial Vietnam and Laos– that means delicious glass noodles, kid-pleasing chicken satay skewers, beef noodle soup, and the homemade baguette sandwich on delicious french bread. For dessert, no one can turn away a brightly-hued macaron!
7912 SE 13th Ave.
This restaurant might run fancy for any 3 year old’s tastes, but everyone loves chocolate cake. And for a slice of cake the entire family can share, there’s nowhere better in town. Head in just for dessert (come back another time for your own date night, parents), take your pick from the showcase, and don’t be surprised when everyone’s licking their plates clean.
5829 SE Milwaukie Ave.
photo: leann via yelp
Known around town for their excellent beers, food, and most of all: the elusive Kids Play Area. It’s full of distractions so adults can relax and enjoy their meal without resorting to handing a phone over to sticky fingers.
6716 SE Milwaukie Ave.
Muddy Rudder Public House
This pub in a historic house in downtown Sellwood has been around for decades. It’s a popular local’s bar serving great food and beer from a full bar, with regular live music. Kid-friendly until the usual nighttime hour (after bedtime anyway!), the outdoor patio makes a great spot to get some wiggles out while chowing down!
8105 SE 7th Ave
What’s your favorite hang-out in Sellwood-Moreland? Tell us in the comments below!