Outside Wants to Crown America's Best Outdoors Cities. That Throne Is Ours!

The magazine's gamified contest is based on trails, restaurants, public lands, and, yes, beer—and yet to date Portland has barely made the quarterfinals.

By Michelle Porter May 3, 2016

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For 12 straight years now, Outside magazine has sweet-talked readers into giving out their email addresses with its annual, highly gamified “Best Towns Outside” contest. This year, we might just part with ours, if only to finally get our own.

Yes, citizens of Portland, it’s true—the great City of Roses has never won this (kind of random) title from Outside. The last time we even made the list at all—which, according to the contest website, seeks out “places with great access to trails and public lands, thriving restaurants and neighborhoods, and, of course, a good beer scene”—was five years ago, and we tapped out of the bracket in 9th place.

This year, we’ve been nominated in Outside’s “River Town” category. And boy, do we have our Gorge up. Because while, as of today, we’re still in the running, we’re up against Gunnison, Colorado, and currently losing by 2.58 percent. Votes for this second bracket (each lasts five days) can be placed through Wednesday, May 4.  Should we advance, there’s still three rounds to go—and you can vote every time, guys!

While you’re at it, why not help a coastal sister out? Yachats, Oregon, is in the running for best "Beach Town"—and Seattle’s up against Savannah, Georgia, for "Culture Town." (Hey, we’re all Cascadians here, people.) 

So, Portlanders, let’s claim what is rightfully ours! Americans—or at least those New Mexico-based editors at Outside—need to know Portland can get out the vote for things that really matter: trails, public lands, thriving restaurants and neighborhoods, and beer. They set the rules—now let’s take the title.

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