Have you ever had Oregon FOMO? Of course you have. ShareOregon wants that to stop.
The free site, which went live this past summer, Oregon adventurers to share their favorite spots with everyone else, from guided urban winery tastings to snowshoeing in the Cascades to hiking along the Juniper Gulch Trail.
ShareOregon creator Rick Reynolds hails from Connecticut and moved to Portland in 2001 for what he believed to be a temporary relocation. As so often happens, though, when it came time to leaving, he just couldn't. “I got way too attached, I couldn’t go back,” he says. We asked Reynolds to reveal his inspiration behind the site.
When did you begin to conceptualize ShareOregon?
My background is in education. I began thinking about the direction the internet has gone and the present sharing economy. I really liked some of those developments—for example my wife and I host on Airbnb and we have enjoyed that and it made me think about what else we can share. We like sharing the best parts of our neighborhood so why we thought why don’t we make it easy for other folks to share their best parts of the state? It’s such a great win-win.
What types of things have people been sharing?
Well, my original idea was for an outdoors focus because I’m a proponent of outdoors education and I think it’s a good way to get people of all ages engaged. As the site began to grow, people were like, “How about different arts events around town? How about local arts and crafts?” So it has evolved. We do rentals as well, if you have a canoe sitting around most of the year how about letting your neighbors share it? Whatever you have that you think will make Oregon even better you can share it there. The best part is a lot of the posts are free, like people sharing their favorite places to go.
Has anything been posted that surprised you?
A man named Juan, who is bilingual and a rock climber, came up with bilingual rock climbing classes which are up [on the site] now. That inspired me to make the site bilingual so now people who are primarily Spanish-speaking can flip a switch and turn the site to Spanish. It’s a community effort to add to it and make it better and better, all different things I didn’t initially have on my radar.
How many posts are on the site currently?
The number is constantly changing as a lot of them are events that come and go. On average there are about 160, it’s a great start but we are only a few months in. Hopefully in another year we will have the state fully populated!