Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to the body and soul.
~ John Muir (1838-1914)
Eugene is located in Oregon’s beautiful Willamette Valley. From here, students can travel easily to many points of interest in Oregon. The scenic Oregon coastline, the mountainous terrain along the McKenzie River, and the bountiful farmlands beside the Willamette River are within an hour’s drive. Day trips can take students to Crater Lake in southern Oregon, Mount Hood in northern Oregon, Mount Bachelor and Willamette Pass ski resorts in the Cascade Mountains, the Columbia River gorge, Multnomah Falls, the Portland Rose Festival, or the renowned Ashland Shakespeare Festival. The city is home to an opera, symphony, multiple theatres, ballet companies, museums, fine restaurants, lively coffee houses, and a number of libraries. Oregon Bach Festival is in town and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is right down in Ashland. Eugene is also ideally positioned to accommodate a host of outdoor activities from hiking to camping, kayaking to fishing.
Gutenberg College’s proximity to the University of Oregon (UO) provides many social and cultural opportunities for Gutenberg students, some of which are listed below.
Many UO departments allow community members to audit their lower-division classes at significantly reduced rates. Inquire at the department office for a list of such classes and their rates. Upper-division courses are also usually open to the public for credit at community rates, if prerequisites have been met. Enrolling in classes at the community rate gives the Gutenberg student many benefits that a UO student has, including access to the Recreation Center, an Internet server, computer labs, tutoring, and student sports tickets. Access to the Health Center is not included.
Click here for more on how to take a wide range of community classes at UO.
Erb Memorial Union (EMU)
The UO student center, known as the EMU, is located six blocks from Gutenberg College. It houses a food court, coffee and tea shops, a photocopy center, and more. Its Craft Center offers classes throughout the year on various arts and skills, such as weaving, woodworking, and pottery. These classes are available to Gutenberg students at community prices, and they often provide the student access to expensive labs and equipment.
The Oregon Ballroom Dance Club, holds a dance (open to the community) each Friday evening from 7:30-11:30pm at Gerlinger Hall. During the first hour, a lesson is held for beginners and developing dancers. Many of the Gutenberg students enjoy this opportunity throughout the year.
The UO’s training field for many track-and-field world-record holders is located one block from Gutenberg College. Olympic Trials for track-and-field are held at Hayward Field.
Libraries and Museums
The UO’s six libraries house more than 2.8 million books. Also available are the Art Museum (located near the main library and open to the public free-of-charge on the first Friday of every month), the Museum of Geology (in Condon Hall), and the museum of Natural History (on 15th Street).
This cooperative program offers a wide variety of “at cost” outings. Outings are contingent on members organizing them, but in the past they have included skiing, hiking, rafting, rock climbing, and biking. Non-UO students pay a $15 membership fee per quarter to participate.
The Oregon Daily Emerald informs students about events on campus, many of which are open to the public for free or for a nominal fee. Gutenberg students can use their student body card to attend UO theater productions, concerts, and dance performances at student rates, or they can take advantage of free senior recitals or the University’s open dance hall on Friday nights.
City of Eugene and Environs
The City of Eugene, the home of Gutenberg College, and its close environs provide numerous cultural and recreational opportunities. In addition to concert halls, museums, libraries, art galleries, theatres, indoor pools, athletic facilities, bowling alleys, and an ice-skating rink, students will find the following in the Eugene area:
All course books are included in the books-and-fees charge and can be picked up—after fees have been paid—from the Gutenberg College office.
A full-service bookstore of the University of Oregon is located at 895 E. 13th, and other books (new and used) may be purchased at Windows (199 W. 8th), Smith Family Bookstore (768 E. 13th and 525 Willamette Street), Barnes and Noble (Valley River Center), and other bookstores in the area.
Over 300 churches in the Eugene area provide students with a wide variety of church-activity options. For example, Central Lutheran Church, located one block from Gutenberg College, is famous throughout Eugene for its love of music. Liturgical church services and performances throughout the year incorporate a choir, a Baroque-style organ, a Steinway grand piano, and over sixty hand bells. Twice a year, the church’s choir and orchestra perform a sacred choral masterpiece. Students interested in the church’s musical offerings are encouraged to inquire about joining the choir or orchestra.
Public Gardens & Parks
Hendricks Park and the Owen Rose Garden display world-class rhododendrons, azaleas, and roses.
Hult Center for the Performing Arts
The Hult Center, which offers student discounts, features a 2,200-seat concourse and hosts national and international musical and performing artists. Each year, the Oregon Bach Festival attracts an international audience.
Opportunities include miles of running and hiking trails in addition to ninety-eight miles of paved bicycle paths that wind along the Willamette River and through numerous parks. Rafting, canoeing, and fishing areas abound in and around Eugene, and nearby reservoirs provide plentiful boating opportunities. The climate is mild year-round, with average temperatures of 75° in the summer and 45° in the winter.
Three large malls offer traditional shopping experiences, while the Saturday Market and Fifth Street Market offer the creations of local artisans and good food, including freshly grown produce.