Q: We are about to expand our family from four to five and are thinking of moving outside of the city. In your opinion, are we right in uprooting our children?

A: Washington County is a fun, family-friendly place to work and play. With Nike and Intel as the mecca of the corporate scene on the west side of Portland, many families flock to the neighborhoods close by. Because of the corporate culture, the 727 square miles of suburban living has been an ever-growing place for families to spend their time.

Have you ever met a Portlander that doesn’t like their schools? That doesn’t happen in Washington County! Because of the business commerce the county has to offer, the schools are extremely attractive to locals as well as new people moving into the city. It offers a plethora of private and public schools to suit students of all ages.

Washington County is also a very "mode of transportation friendly" place, so whether you are on foot, biking, riding a horse or in the car, you have the opportunity to see it all.

Take a drive to the country side of Washington County. There is a Valley Scenic Tour Route through the county that showcases much of the agricultural, historic sites, wildlife and viewpoints of the Cascade Mountains. It’s a perfect way to spend time with the family!

Along the way, stop at a local farm for berries or pumpkins. Roloff Farms in Hillsboro is an exciting destination for local pumpkin pickers due to their rise in fame from TLC’s "Little People, Big World" television series. Stop for lunch at the popular Helvetia Tavern, written up in many food magazines for its hamburgers. The kids will love it; I promise!

Go to the movies at one of the area’s newer shopping centers, Bridgeport Village. Regal Cinemas offers an IMAX theatre for the ultimate viewing experience. One has the opportunity to dine or have a scoop of ice cream before or after a movie. Other shopping amenities include Washington Square and the Streets of Tanasbourne. You can drop the kids off and take a break by spending the day at Hagg Lake and Scoggins Valley Park. This is a popular boating destination. Or you can take a picnic and spend a day in the sun. The park also offers a disc golf course, along with 15 miles of hiking and biking trails.

There is plenty to do for people of all ages, and the best part is that there are activities to enjoy together as a family! Don’t think of it as “uprooting” – think of it as an adventure into the great Washington County!

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