Christmas In Sunriver Is The Best!

Imagine a place nestled in the pine tree covered foothills of the Cascade mountains and where the days seem to meander in tranquil bliss like The Deschutes River. A place where stars sparkle like diamonds in the evening sky and dazzle your entire field of vision. That place is Sunriver, Oregon and it’s the best place to spend the holidays. In Sunriver we don’t dream of a white Christmas. We (almost) ALWAYS have a white Christmas and spreading Christmas cheer is the norm here. This is the place where you can actually go dashing through the snow in a one-horse open sleigh.

Where a Christmas tree lighting ceremony isn’t complete until the fireworks are set off. We host a contest to see which local business, elementary school class, and individual can make the best themed gingerbread and confection “lot” in their category called Gingerbread Junction.

From November to January, Sunriver transforms into a Winter Wonderland with more inches of snow in town than most of Central Oregon. This 2-month long celebration is called ‘Traditions’ because that’s what it is. It’s the tradition of creating memories to last a lifetime and it’s exactly what the holiday are all about: being with your loved ones, stopping to appreciate each other and being thankful for your many blessings. Being here is evokes the feeling of not wanting time to move on, to relish in the quiet, slow pace of life and to fill your lungs with the crisp mountain air.

Sunriver is where you come to unplug, to remove yourself from the chaos of the everyday and to play. Here, we embrace play whole heartedly and have even placed our ice skating and tubing areas are right in the center of town. Plus we have over 30 miles of trails to walk or fat tire bike through. For traditional holiday fun there’s Santa’s Wokshop at The Great Hall, Brunch with Santa, kids ornament and gift making, cookie decorating, and so much more. If a little more adventure is on the play-list then Mt. Bachelor is only a 25-minute drive away. At the mountain you’ll find endless activities to excite you such as dog sled rides, snowmobiling, snow shoeing, tubing, and of course ski or snowboarding.

If you’ve decided to join us for Christmas here are some ideas of how to spend your time.

 

Christmas Eve/Day Activities

Meet, greet, and pet real reindeer at Camp Abbot Trading Post
Get in the holiday spirit, Central Oregon style by grabbing the family and hitting the slopes at Mt. Bachelor’s Santa On The Slopes celebration! 
Go for a ride in a one-horse open sleigh

 

 

 

Head outside and build a snowman together, make snow angels or challenge each other to a friendly snowball fight.

 

 

Snuggle up next to the fire and play board games, sip cocoa, and enjoy a moment of family fun.

 

Go to the movies! Treat your family to some reimagine nostalgia and check out the Mary Poppins Returns. Check out the trailer here.

Fall Adventures at Mt. Bachelor

If you will be spending a weekend in Central Oregon this fall, don’t think that Mt. Bachelor is off limits as a destination. There are many fall adventures at Mt. Bachelor to be had. Before the snow flies and the snowboards and skis get waxed, enjoy some spectacular views, play some disc golf or race down the hill on a bike at Mt. Bachelor this fall.

Scenic Chair Lift Rides and Hiking:

These are available from 11am to 5pm Friday through Sunday. Begin at the West Village base area, your ride will take you up to the Pine Marten Lodge at 7,775 feet. You will be able to soak up views of the Three Sisters peaks, Broken Top and many of the Cascade Lakes. From the top you can hike trails on the mountain and even grab lunch, snacks and beverages inside the Pine Marten Lodge. Prices vary from $14 – $20 based on age. Mt. Bachelor’s operating schedule is subject to change based on weather conditions and other factors. Be sure to check their conditions report before you go. If you choose to hike, be sure you’ve got all the necessary equipment and maps. You can find more information about Mt. Bachelor hiking here.

Disc Golf:

To play this course, you’ll have to suffer through the breathtaking views to be seen from the Pine Marten chair lift. From the top of the lift, you will find hole #1 and from there, you work your way down the mountain to hole #18. Experience your favorite ski runs in the summer time as you play your favorite game on Mt. Bachelor! A lift ticket pass is required to ride the lift and play disc golf. Prices are above, or can be found here.

Mountain Biking:

13 miles of downhill trails are at your fingertips from the Mt. Bachelor lifts. The Sunshine Accelerator lift is great for beginners and up. The Pine Marten Express will lead you to a combination of machine built and single track trails for intermediate to advanced riders. You may choose to buy a ticket for the Sunshine Bike Park alone ($19) or a ticket for the whole mountain ($29 for 12 and under or $42 for 13+). In the fall (September 4th – October 7th) the lifts and parks are open from 11am to 5pm Friday – Sunday, so plan accordingly. As mentioned above, be sure to double check the Mt. Bachelor conditions to ensure that everything is up and running for your planned day of adventure.

Day Trip – Hike the Fall River Trail

Are you looking for a hike that is close to Sunriver? Perhaps you need a trail that is kid-friendly. Then this is the hike you are looking for. The Fall River Trail is great for those of all skill levels.

I recently walked this trail with my 4 year old and 4 month old sons. My 4 year old strapped on his helmet, hopped onto his Strider bike and cruised on down the trail, no problem. We fell behind a bit, as I unfolded the stroller and secured the car seat in, but easily caught up once moving. The well-maintained trail is quite easy with a stroller. Take note that as you begin descending, the trail feels a bit narrow and slightly slanted (while pushing a stroller). Don’t let that scare you away, however, the rest is very doable.

To get here, drive out of Sunriver and, at the traffic circle, take the 1st exit onto S. Century Drive. Turn left onto S. Century Drive after .6 miles. After 3.1 miles, turn right to stay on S. Century Drive. Drive up this road for 7.8 miles and you will see a parking area on the left. Park here and you will see the trail to the right of the parking area. It’s quite easy to find and so worth it!

Once you park, you’ll notice a winding and strikingly clear river below. This is the Fall River. It’s breathtaking in its beauty and temperature. This is not the water you’ll want to jump into on a hot summer day, but it is sure lovely to look at.

Fall River Trail - Sunriver OregonAs you weave along the trail, you’ll be able to enjoy the sights and smells of the red bark on the toweringPonderosas all around you, hear the birds chirping and the squirrels rattling the leaves as they race each other through the forest. If you are lucky, you may even spot a deer along the trail. The trail does parallel the highway in some spots, but it is far enough away that the occasional car does not intrude on your nature experience.

Fall River Trail - Sunriver OregonRemember your snacks or pack a picnic. There are some off-shoots of the trail that lead to the river banks with some flat dry areas for sitting and enjoying the sound of the water streaming by. If your young ones want an additional challenge, give them a list of treasures to find.

Our list went as follows:

  • A full pinecone
  • An eaten pinecone
  • A stick with a purpose (a walking stick, or one that resembles a wand or a sword… pretty easy, eh?)
  • A stick with moss attached
  • A smooth rock
  • A lava rock
  • Trash x 3
note: Here’s some good news. We couldn’t find a single piece of trash. We brought the amount to find down to 1 to make it easier. Still nothing. We ended up tossing a wrapper from our snacks next to us so that our son felt like he completed the list. (Don’t tell him!)
  • BONUS: A deer (we were not fortunate enough to spot one on this outing)

Overall, this was such a nice hike. It even rained on us a bit, but we didn’t mind. We felt sheltered by the forest and revitalized by our hike and time together.
If you are planning a trip to Central Oregon soon, be sure to check out our list of vacation rentals. From any of these, you’ll be close to this trail and SO much more!

Spring in Sunriver – Part 2

With the mild winter we’ve experienced in central Oregon this year, we just can’t stop thinking about Spring. Blue skies, comfortable temperatures and longer days are giving us spring fever. That said, here are some more super fun ideas for your spring adventure in Sunriver.

Mountain Biking

There are tons of amazing mountain biking trails in central Oregon. A favorite for us locals is Phil’s Trail. This trail, located just outside of Sunriver, is a system of over 100 miles of interwoven trails. The trails vary from beginner to advanced difficulty levels. Not only is this trail a local favorite, but it’s I one of the most popular in the Pacific Northwest. Find directions from Sunriver here.

Another great ride is the Deschutes River Trail. You may choose to do a portion of the trail or ride the entire thing from Sunriver to Bend or vice versa. With views of lava flows, the Deschutes River and the chance to spot some wildlife, you won’t be disappointed with this ride. There are several access points. Check here for more. Spring bike riding in the area is not to be missed

Mt Bachelor

One of our favorite things about central Oregon is that you can take advantage of all that Mt. Bachelor has to offer through the spring! Ski, snowboard or check out the tubing hill through Memorial Day weekend. There are also some cool events to check out up there through the spring. Check out our other blog post about spring to check those out.

Floating the river

Down in the lower elevations we won’t be waiting for snow to melt to begin those summer-like adventures. Check out some of our favorite favorite local floats for fall here. Though this post was meant for fall, these floats are wonderful in the spring and any time of the year.

Marathons and races

For you runners, Central Oregon has lots of marathons all year long. In March, don’t miss out on the family friendly March Mudness right here in Sunriver. Later in the spring head to Bend for the Salmon Run 10k or 5k runs.

Your A-Z List of Things To Do In Sunriver

There is no shortage of things to do in Sunriver, but it can be difficult to find all of the amazing activities and sights. That’s where our A-Z guide comes in. We’ve put together a comprehensive list of things to do in Sunriver that is sure to keep you busy no matter how long your stay is!

YR = Year Round
Sp = Spring
S = Summer
F = Fall
W = Winter

Art (YR) – From roundabout art in Bend, to a plethora of art galleries throughout the area, there is not shortage of unique and local art to be enjoyed in Sunriver and beyond.

Beer/Breweries (YR) – Known as “Beertown USA”, Bend and the surrounding communities are a hot spot for beer lovers. With well over 20 breweries and counting, the area is home to some of the best beers in the nation. Beer is such an attraction in the area that there is even a Brewery passport you can work on filling up with the Bend Ale Trail. As a guest of Village Properties at Sunriver, you will receive a discount to the Bend Brew Bus, a service that will take you and your crew to breweries in the area.

Cross Country Skiing (W) – Take in scenes that you can only see in the Deschutes National Forest. Cross Country Skiing is a peaceful and rewarding activity that is available at the Mt. Bachelor Nordic Center or from any of the areas many Sno-Parks.

Dog Sledding (W) – Central Oregon is home to Oregon Trail of Dreams, owned by Rachael Scdoris, her husband Nick and her father, Jerry. Rachael is a world-renowned athlete and had her first Iditarod finish in 2006. Stay warm in the sled while a real dog sled team takes you on an unforgettable winter adventure.

Elevation (YR) – With the Cascade mountains nearby, you can easily gain some elevation in Central Oregon. In the winter, see some epic views and speed down the mountain from the top of Mt. Bachelor on the Summit Express lift. In the summer, Mt. Bachelor offers scenic chairlift rides on the Pine Marten Lift. From mid-mountain you’ll be able to see some breathtaking views. Or, head up in the evening for dinner at the Pine Marten Lodge with sunset views.

Floating the Deschutes (Sp, S, F) – When the days are long and warm, visitors and locals alike love floating the Deschutes River. There are several great spots to put-in throughout Central Oregon. We share just a few of many ideas here.

Golf (Sp, S, F) – With more than two-dozen golf courses, Central Oregon is a must-visit destination for golf-enthusiasts. Be sure to visit a nearby course on your stay, or even plan an entire vacation surrounding golf. As a guest of Village Properties at Sunriver, you will receive discounts at a select few courses in the region.

High Desert Museum (YR) – Discover the natural world and cultural history of the West’s High Desert through artful exhibits, alluring animals, engaging programs and meaningful history at the High Desert Museum. Open all year, this is a fantastic activity for the whole family.

Ice Skating (W) – Ice skating is a necessary family tradition in the winter. The Village at Sunriver offers a newly remodeled Ice arena for this activity. With skate rentals and even a viewing area for those that don’t want to brave the ice, you won’t be sorry you chose this activity.

Jazz (F, W) – Jazz at the Oxford, that is. Currently in its 8th year, Jazz at the Oxford brings world-class artists to the area over 5 separate weekends in the fall and winter. Enjoy fine dining and incredible music in a tranquil setting.

Kayak (Sp, S, F) – With the Deschutes River and too many gorgeous lakes to count, kayaking is a favorite activity in the Sunriver area. If you are visiting and want to try a kayak out, Village Properties guests will receive a discount on kayak and gear rentals at some great local businesses.

Lakes (Sp, S, F) – If kayaking isn’t your cup of tea, simply visiting the lakes for some photo opps is still necessary if you’re in Sunriver. The high mountain lakes are stunning and often make you feel as if you’re standing in a postcard.

Mt. Bachelor (YR) – Mt. Bachelor has an activity for every season. From biking, hiking, site-seeing or disc golf in the warmer months to skiing, snowboarding, cross country skiing, sled dog rides, snowblast tubing and more in the winter, you will find an activity for everyone up at the mountain.

Nature Center (YR) – A non-profit and educational organization, the Sunriver Nature Center offers hands-on activities, programs and exhibits that will keep the kiddos engaged and interested in the natural world.

Oregon Observatory (YR) – Your gateway to an expanding world of information and natural sciences. The Oregon Observatory at Sunriver offers daytime and nighttime viewing options as well as lots of programs and special events. Be sure to check with the Village Properties staff to see if we can offer you any special deals.

Paddle (Sp, S, F) – As mentioned in the Kayak section above, there are tons of options for paddling your kayak, canoe or even a paddleboard. Regardless of which method of paddling you choose, it’s worth doing while visiting the area. Check out your options at Good 2 Go Food and Fun or Tumalo Creek Kayak and Canoe. Both great companies will offer guests of Village Properties at Sunriver great discounts.

Quiet (YR) – Picture the snow falling outside and all you hear is the crackling of a fire in your vacation rental. Imagine lying on the shore of the Deschutes River and all you can hear is the water streaming by you, some birds chirping and a light breeze in the trees. No matter what time of year you visit, you’re sure to find some peace and quiet to help you relax and rejuvenate.

Relax (YR) – Sunriver and the surrounding areas offer beauty, nature and more to help you feel rested. Whether you go out for a long walk in the forest, a dreamy paddle on the river or a speedy ride down the mountain on your skis, you’re sure to feel a sense of rejuvenation after visiting the area. If a massage or pedicure sounds more appealing, be sure to check out Sage Springs.

Sledding (W) – There are plenty of winter activities that we could mention here. We chose sledding because it’s an activity that is truly fun for the whole family. Especially at Wanoga Sno-Park.

Tubing (W) – Sno-blast tubing is the name and Mt. Bachelor is the place to go to experience an 800 foot ride, full of rollers. Fun for all ages!

Unplug/Unwind (YR) – Why not come to Central Oregon for a true escape. Come to the quiet, relax and unplug. Turn the phone off and don’t look at your laptop. Instead, bring a book, kick up your feet and let the unwinding begin. Check out Sage Springs, a local club and spa to reserve a massage and/or a pedicure to help you out.

Visit (YR) – So, you came to Central Oregon with your family. Maybe it’s not the best time to unplug. But, it’s the perfect time to visit. Take the time to reconnect with those that you’re with. Walk in nature and just be together. Bond over a cup of coffee while watching the deer stroll through the forest. Visiting with those that you love while in Sunriver is easy.

Walk/Bike (YR) – No matter what Mother Nature is offering you, the miles of paved trails in Sunriver offer endless options for walking and biking. Many of our vacation rentals are in close proximity to the Village at Sunriver and other attractions. The paved trails of Sunriver offer you walking or biking as an option for getting around.

EXplore (YR) – Sunriver and the surrounding areas offer an endless amount of options for exploring. From lakes and rivers to caves and mountains. From the forest and hiking trails to fishing and sightseeing, the options are never-ending. Be sure to check with the Village Properties staff if you have any questions about our area. Our staff is local and very knowledgeable about the area and all it has to offer.

Yoga (YR) – In Sunriver, Sage Springs offers Yoga classes all year round. This beautiful club and spa will not disappoint. Or, grab your mat and take a short walk to enjoy some yoga on your own out in nature.

Zesty food (YR) – There is no shortage of dining options in Sunriver. The area is home to several talented chefs that share their expertise with many tasty restaurants. Remember, Village Properties at Sunriver guests will receive discounts to some of these local restaurants.

Buy your Mt. Bachelor lift tickets at The Village at Sunriver!

Save time and skip the lines by purchasing your Mt. Bachelor lift tickets in Sunriver!

New this winter, Mt. Bachelor has an office in the Village at Sunriver mall, where you can purchase your single-day lift tickets, season passes and all other options offered through Mt. Bachelor. Beat the crowds, skip the long lines and buy your Mt. Bachelor lift tickets before you even hit the mountain! It’s a great way to get in, get out and spend even more time on the slopes.

Mt. Bachelor’s Sunriver office is located in Building 26 at the Village of Sunriver, where Sun Country Tours was previously located. This location will be open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, though operating hours will fluctuate with demand.

This new office of Mt. Bachelor’s is just one more reason why staying in Sunriver for a ski vacation is such a great choice! With the Northwest open, and the brand new Cloudchaser lift set to open on Friday, Mt. Bachelor is now the 5th largest skiing and snowboarding area in the United States. That’s a whole lot of POW to enjoy! So get a jump on things by staying in Sunriver for your winter trip to Mt. Bachelor. We’re even closer to the mountain than Bend, which means even more time to enjoy yourself. And many of our vacation rental properties boast hot tubs and fireplaces, so you can easily head “home” to warm yourself after a long day of play.

Click here to book your next adventure, or call 1-800-SUNRIVER to speak with a Reservation Specialist.

Get Your Christmas Tree Permit at Village Properties at Sunriver

It’s time again to deck the halls and trim the tree. For many of us here in Central Oregon, that means it’s time to head into the woods and find that perfect Christmas tree.

But did you know that you’ll need a permit to cut and take that tree home with you? Christmas tree permits are required for each tree, with five Christmas tree permits maximum, per household. There are a few places in Deschutes County where tree permits can be found, and we’re happy to be one of them.

Christmas tree permits can be purchased at Village Properties at Sunriver.

Permits cost $5 each, and can be purchased from Village Properties during business hours. Our offices are located in the Sunriver Business Park at 56835 Venture Lane, Suite 109. You can also call us at 1-800-SUNRIVER with any questions.

Once you have your Christmas tree permit, here are a few things to note before heading out to find your tree:

  • Permits are good only for trees cut within the Deschutes National Forest.
  • Christmas tree permits should be attached to your tree for the ride back home.
  • Only cut down trees that are less than 12 feet tall. (The most popular varieties include Douglas fir, White fir, Incense Cedar, Lodgepole and Ponderosa Pines.)
  • Only cut down trees that are within 15 feet of another tree.
  • Make sure that the stump you leave behind is less than 12 inches tall.
  • Don’t cut trees that are:
    • located on private property.
    • located within 150 feet of developed areas such as highways, picnic areas, campgrounds, etc.
    • located within 300 feet of bodies of water.
    • located in an area with lots of young trees.

Stop by Village Properties at Sunriver to purchase your Christmas tree permit:

Sunriver Business Park
56835 Venture Lane, Suite 109
Sunriver, OR 97707

1-800-SUNRIVER