How to Pronounce Important Words Used 'round These Parts so you feel like an oldtimer...
"Willamette" rhymes with "well, DAM-it" with the emPHAsis on the middle syllable.
"Eugene" = yoo-JEEN
"Oregon" is pronounced OAR-ee-gun or OAR-uh-gun, but never, never, under penalty of instant excommunication and finger-pointing, pronounce it "AR-y-gone".
"espresso" = ess-PRESS-o (there is no X in "espresso")
Calapooia and Calapoola are pronounced the same, both as "kal-ih-POO(ee)-ya".
(with many thanks to the Northwest Pronunciation Guide):
Champoeg = sham-POO-ee
Coquille = ko-KEEL
The Dalles = the DALZ
Gervais = JER-vis
Heceta Head lighthouse = ha-SEE-ta
Tillamook = TILL-a-mook (rhymes with "FILL-a-book")
Toutle = TOO-tl
Umatilla = YOO-ma-TILL-a
Yachats = YAH-hots (fondly called Yatch-its which rhymes with Scratch-its)
Yaquina Bay = ya-KWINN-a bay (not yah-KEEN-a)
Half.com/Halfway is an eastern Oregon town, population 345
with an interesting story
Ya-Po-Ah = Yah-POH-Ah
The classical music station at the University of Oregon is pronounced K-W-A-X, but it is meant to resemble "Quacks", like a Duck... Remember, the University of Oregon Ducks can getcha by land, water and air...
The river southeast of Cottage Grove is the Row River and it rhymes with Frau, not Roe. It was named for a dispute or "row" over something or other.
Lane County is the covered bridge capital, west of the Mississippi.
Remember, in Oregon:
• If it has no snow or has not recently erupted, it is not a "real" mountain.
• We don't know how to pump our own gas and that's the way we like it.
• We recycle a lot of things in Oregon - get used to it.
• If you don't know what "The mountain is out" means, you are not from the Northwest.
• The Oregon state flower is mildew.
• We don't tan, we rust.
• You can tell it's Spring when the rainy days get longer.
• We love our latte/coffee houses.
• If the temperature sinks to 50F, we just wear warm socks with our sandals and shorts.
• We measure distance in drive-time. "Portland is 2.5 hours north of Eugene."