One perfect day in Lincoln City, OR: The Taft District

Get a blast from the past in this historic neighborhood


Grab a delicious fish taco or refreshing cocktail at Tiki's.

Photo by John Clark


Taft Waterfront Park offers great access to the waves and sand.

Photo by John Clark

Captain Dan’s Pirate Pastry Shop

Captain Dan’s Pirate Pastry Shop is one of the quirkier attractions in town.

Photo by John Clark

Taft Sign

Photo by John Clark

Make it a weekend

  • Looking Glass Inn

    Facing Siletz Bay near Taft Waterfront Park, the Cape Cod–style Looking Glass Inn is your launching pad for leisurely strolls on the beach. The hotel takes pet-friendly to another level, with a dog run (with its own fire hydrant) and bowls and treats in your room. From $109, $10/night pet fee;

Why go now: This overlooked historic neighborhood fronting beatific Siletz Bay had its heyday in the ’30s and ’40s, but a gussied-up main street is reintroducing visitors to its slow summer charms.

Pedigree: In 1965, the town of Taft joined four other seaside burgs to become Lincoln City.

Dress code: Deck shoes, khakis, Ray-Bans, and a Frisbee-loving chocolate lab.

Main drag: S.W. 51st St., where wide promenades and hanging flower baskets make for great strolling.

Matriarch of 51st Street: Octogenarian Eleanor Kramer, of Eleanor’s Undertow ($; 869 S.W. 51st; 541/996-3800), has been flipping burgers and trading gossip at this pink-sided, mermaid-topped Taft landmark for 32 years.

Mark your calendar: For Iris Pride, Lincoln City’s gay-pride festival, which brings fire-eaters, acrobats, and buskers to S.W. 51st from September 16 through 18.

Overheard: “I thought Lincoln City started at the casino and ended at the outlet mall. Thank god we found Taft!”

Feel the local love: At Tiki’s—a Polynesian-themed gift/ice cream/cocktail/sandwich shop with a pet macaw that calls out “I love you!” to passersby—you can get great fish tacos, hot dogs, or a mean mudslide with bourbon and Stumptown coffee. $; 1005 S.W. 51st St.; 541/996-4200.

Play in the surf: Grab a front-row seat on a driftwood log on the beach at Taft Waterfront Park (S.W. 51st St.) and watch the harbor seals tumble in the waves at the mouth of Siletz Bay. Better yet, rent a sea kayak (from $20/half-day; and join in the fun.


Glassblowing 101: Take a beginner’s lesson at the Jennifer Sears Glass Art Studio, a city-owned glassblowing foundry. Your teacher, a resident artist, helps you shape a glob of molten glass into a delicate candy-colored balloon, fluted bowl, or paperweight that you can take home. From $65;

Get to know the old Taft District: At the North Lincoln County Historical Museum, see the life-size diorama of Taft’s Redhead Roundup beauty queens, a nod to the all-redhead pageant that drew thousands of visitors in the ’30s. Or peek through the oil drum–size kaleidoscope from the Pixieland theme park, which closed in 1973. Free; 4907 S.W. U.S. 101; 541/996-6614.

A pie shop with character: At Captain Dan’s Pirate Pastry Shop, owner Dan Draper wears a three-cornered hat and carries a cutlass, the better to carve thick slices of marionberry pie. Try it and see if his motto—“It takes a pirate to do pie right!”—holds up. 5070 S.E. U.S. 101; 541/996-4600.

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