Weird War III: Portland Rising

In the ongoing battle for weirdest city, an Austin-based graphic designer crowns Portland as the quirkiest of all.

By Nicole Cordier April 3, 2014

The battle for weirdest city has been raging on between Portland and Austin since 2003, when the Rose City borrowed our now trademark phrase, "Keep Portland Weird," from an Austin campaign that promoted citizens to shop locally. With both cities vying to be the quirkiest destination state side, arguments supporting one or the other's weirdness abound.

Ironically, the latest argument supporting Portland's claim to the title comes from an Austin-based graphic designer named Brian Shreckengast.

Shreckengast has created an infographic comparing the cities in 12 categories such as: most pot friendly, best city for dogs and best people watching. His surprising conclusion:Portland is weirder.

"When I set out to make it I was kind of hoping Austin would win," says Shreckengast. "Austinites are pretty defensive about it, so when they realize I'm from Austin they call me a traitor."

According to Shreckengast's metrics, the Rose City beat Austin in 9 of 12 categories, predictably including most tattooed and most bike friendly. In fact, Austin's only weirdness points come from being the more vegan friendly city, boasting better people watching and being the crazier of the two (based on psychiatrists per capita).

This new evidence supports what us Oregonians have always known: Portland is a weird place, even though big bushy beards, fixed gear bicycles and micro brewed beer hardly seem that strange these days. If munching on vegan snacks while people watching the clinically depressed is more your cup of tea, maybe Austin's variety of quirk is a better fit for you.

View Shreckengast's infographic here. 

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