Mount Tabor Neighborhood in Portland, Oregon
A well roasted shot of espresso, baristas that know the names of customers and their children, unique home architecture and a volcano to hold it all together are what make Mount Tabor a one-of-a-kind neighborhood. Tightly knit with its neighbors, North Tabor and South Tabor, these three neighborhoods have a lot to offer SE Portland in terms of keeping Portland weird, locally conscious, and family friendly.
Every neighborhood in Portland has its own distinct personality. Mount Tabor is one SE Portland neighborhood that is constantly overlooked, though it has so much to offer. I have found the Mount Tabor neighborhood to be a lift up to a great Portland view, while tucked behind the lively Hawthorne district near SE 39th. It’s a community for artists, families and young people looking to settle or stay temporarily (though once you’re here, the volcano usually sucks you in permanently).
Mount Tabor neighborhood is located in SE Portland with Burnside to the north, Division to the south, SE 76th to the east and SE 49th to the west. The surrounding neighborhoods are Sunnyside, Richmond, Montavilla, South Tabor and North Tabor neighborhoods. Just south of I-84 is the North Tabor neighborhood with Burnside to the south, 44th to the west and 68th to the east. And South Tabor Neighborhood is located south of Division, north of Powell, east of 52nd and east of 82nd. Portlanders start stepping backwards when they reach 60th, because they think it’s too far out, but what is great about it is the further you live the cheaper it is. These neighborhoods begin to make those ‘the further east, the cheaper homes’ exceptions, while still being quite pricey because of the real estate, location and view.
The Volcano and Reservoirs
Mount Tabor is the only volcano that is within a major city in the United States. This fact alone makes it unique. Who wouldn’t want to live on a (nonactive) volcano? Mount Tabor Park is one of the neighborhoods greatest attractions, taking up 195 acres of the neighborhood’s land and providing endless bike and walking paths to locals and other Portland residents. The park is home to multiple reservoirs that are a large provider of Portland’s drinking water. I found Bob walking along the reservoir located at the base of Mount Tabor Park. Bob moved into the neighborhood about two and a half years ago, all the way from Boston. I asked him about the transition and comparison of Portland to Boston and he was simply speechless. “No comparison,” he told me. And the first thing he told me that he loves about the neighborhood and Portland in general is the water. I was a little amused, and it may be because the water here is all I have ever known. In conclusion, Bob loves the NW because the water here is so much better, among many other reasons such as the location and vibe which, in Bob’s opinion, come behind the value of the water.
Local Coffee Shops and Friendly Baristas (Make a Great Pair)
My first experience with a local business in the area was at TaborSpace, located on the corner of 55th and Belmont. The coffee
house is a non-profit and takes suggested donations for their drinks, that customers simply drop in their donation box. I talked to David in a video interview who was volunteering at the coffee house for the day, serving coffee and good conversation. The coffee house is a brilliant idea, in a great space that hosts all sorts of events.
Another great coffee shop in the Mount Tabor neighborhood is Cooper’s Coffee. The coffee shop is one of the busier shops in the neighborhood, and is conveniently located in the residential area on 60th and Stark. I talked to Lara who works at Cooper’s and has lived in Mount Tabor for two months, but has wanted to for four years. Lara previously lived in the Hawthorne district for seven years but finally moved up to Mount Tabor which is just a short distance away. In comparison, Lara loves living in Mount Tabor neighborhood rather than around Hawthorne because it would get too busy. Whereas Mount Tabor has more of a quiet, friendly neighborhood feel. Lara said that Mount Tabor is extremely family friendly, it’s close to everything and it doesn’t take long to get anywhere in Portland from the neighborhood. She says the neighborhood is laid back, has a strong sense of community that holds it together, and most people know each other which give it an almost small town feel in the midst of a big city. When it comes to advice for people looking to move to the neighborhood or to the City of Roses, Lara says depending on what you are looking for and what you want to be close to (schools, businesses, downtown), do your research before moving. Portland has pretty much everything that anyone could want in a city, but different areas of the city offer different things.
For the North Tabor Neighborhood and Mount Tabor Neighborhood the schools are:
Glencoe Elementary, Richmond Elementary, Mt. Tabor Middle and Franklin High.
The schools in South Tabor Neighborhood are:
Atkinson Elementary, Kellogg Middle and Franklin High.
Other Parks and Recreation
Clinton Park is in South Tabor, located on SE 55th and Woodward Street.
There is a private Meditation Labyrinth that is open to the public during two days of the week. It is located at the Labyrinth House between SE Division and Powell on 58th Ave.
The Shogren House Museum is located within the North Tabor neighborhood, and is listed in the national registry for historic places.
Homes and Real Estate
There are a wide variety of stately mansions found upon the highest points of Mount Tabor, while there are also very modest homes in the surrounding blocks. There is a wide variety of architecture found within this neighborhood that encompasses styles such as victorian homes, bungalows and English cottages.
This community is a place for artists of all kinds, for families of all ages, and for employees from across the charts. If you are looking for a welcoming SE Portland neighborhood that embraces its personality and almost small-town feel, then visit Mount Tabor.