Living

An extraordinary quality of life is what initially attracts many people and businesses to the Bay Area. The area offers an abundance of outdoor recreational activities, education opportunities, state of the art medical facilities, museums, unique shopping and restaurant experiences, full service libraries, and cultural events. Fishing, water sports, hiking, camping, boating, golfing, beaches and parks provide an abundant array of recreational activities. There are also a number of athletic clubs to choose from.


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Enjoy life in Coos Bay

An extraordinary quality of life is what initially attracts many people and businesses to the Bay Area. The area offers an abundance of outdoor recreational activities, education opportunities, state of the art medical facilities, museums, unique shopping and restaurant experiences, full service libraries, and cultural events. Fishing, water sports, hiking, camping, boating, golfing, beaches and parks provide an abundant array of recreational activities.

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The center of trade and commerce for the entire southwestern Oregon coastal region

Coos Bay is the largest of the communities that comprise Oregon's Bay Area. The city, founded in 1853, was named Marshfield after the Massachusetts hometown of the city's founder J. C. Tolman, and was incorporated in 1874 under that name. In 1944, residents voted to change the name to Coos Bay to match the area's prominent geographic feature.

The name "Coos" is derived from one of the area's Native American tribes and has two Indian meanings: lake and place of pines. The Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians and the Coquille Indians call the Coos Bay region their ancestral homeland. The tribes were dependent upon the land and the water, the Pacific Ocean and other waterways, and the forests and meadows providing sustenance.

Since the 16th century, the area's dramatic beaches, promontories, blazing sunsets, endless stands of massive forests, golden dunes, and waters teeming with fish have awed explorers of the southern Oregon coast. Sir Francis Drake is believed to have sought shelter for his ship, the Golden Hinde, and its crew near Cape Arago in 1579. Trader and explorer Jedediah Smith came to the area for furs and the Hudson's Bay Company sent explorers to search for an inland passage.

Coos Bay, Oregon's largest bay, has represented a commercial passage to the sea from pioneer days to the present. In the mid 1800's, the waterways and forests that had supported the Native American settlements equally encouraged European settlement. Around the turn of the century coal, mining and shipment of coal were a major part of the economy, and the region prospered as a center for wood products, shipbuilding, shipping and products of the sea. Transportation systems radiated from the city to inland Oregon, the Pacific Ocean and other areas of Coos County. The mosquito fleet of small boats delivered people and products to places of pleasure, culture and transshipment to other parts of the world.

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Home to many educational opportunities

Southwestern Oregon Community College

Coos Bay is home to the region's largest educational institution, Southwestern Oregon Community College.

SWOCC

SOCC provides a variety of career programs, first and second year college level course, and upper division courses offered through extension programs of Linfield College, Southern Oregon University, Eastern Oregon University, and Oregon State University. Tuition at SOCC is the same for in‐state and out‐of‐state students. Financial aid, student housing, fitness center, and food services are a few of the amenities offered by the college. The college campus is located in the western part of the city in a 125‐acre wooded area of Empire Lakes Park.

Southwestern Oregon Community College
Phone: 541‐888‐2525
1988 Newmark Avenue, Coos Bay, OR 97420
www.socc.edu

 

Coos Bay School District

Primary and secondary students are served by the Coos Bay School District, with approximately 3,100 students from kindergarten through 12th grade. Well‐coordinated programs provide students with strong basic skills and specialized training. The district is comprised of one high school (Marshfield High School), two intermediate schools (Millicoma Intermediate School and Sunset School), two elementary schools (Blossom Gulch Elementary and Madison Elementary) and several alternative‐school programs at the Harding Learning Center.

Coos Bay School District
Phone: 541‐267‐3104
1255 Hemlock Avenue PO Box 509
Coos Bay OR 97420
www.cbd9.net

 

Other local schools include Lighthouse Charter School (public) as well as Kingsview Christian School and Christ Lutheran Church (both private).

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Coos Bay is the area's hub for medical care

Bay Area Hospital is a 172‐bed publicly owned care facility and is the largest hospital on the Oregon Coast, serving as a regional referral center. The hospital and its medical staff of 100 physicians offer a comprehensive range of diagnostic and therapeutic services. New and expanded medical services include laser treatments, MRI, CT, mammography, stereotactic breast biopsy, and laparoscopy procedures. The Radiation Therapy Center provides cancer patients with treatments, surgical intervention, and chemotherapy.

The region is served by three well‐established medical facilities including North Bend Medical Center, Bay Clinic, and South Coast Orthopedic Associates.
 

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Art, history and culture

 

The Coos Art Museum is located in downtown Coos Bay in the former city post office. The permanent collection includes contemporary American prints and Northwest art, in addition to changing and permanent exhibitions. Several galleries display local artists. The Steve Prefontaine Memorial Collection is located on the 2nd floor.

www.coosart.org
 

 

The Coos Historical and Maritime Museum New History Center serves to enhance the intellectual, civic, and cultural life of Oregon’s South Coast by facilitating awareness of local history. The museum’s displays transport visitors back in time to Coos and Coquille Indians’ culture and the legacy of the region’s first settlers. The new building on highway 101 opened in 2014 with a vibrant, state-of-the-art, purpose-built waterfront facility.

www.cooshistory.org

 

 

The Oregon Coast Historic Rail Museum displays railroad and logging equipment in an outdoor setting. On display are a restored 1922 Baldwin steam locomotive that worked in the region’s forests, and sawmill and logging equipment. The museum and gift shop holds a small collection of photos and railroad memorabilia. The museum is located between the Bay and Highway 101 near Ingersoll Street.

www.orcorail.org

 

Marshfield Sun

 

The Marshfield Sun Printing Museum is located at 1049 North Front Street, next to the Coos Historical and Maritime Museum. The Marshfield Sun is a throwback to the old days when an ink-stained newspaper editor could write the story, edit it, set the type, and print the page. You can see the old press which is still operational and look at vintage issues of the Sun.  It features original equipment of The Sun Newspaper (1891 –1944) and exhibits on printing and local history. The museum is open on Tuesday through Saturday afternoons (1pm - 4pm) from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Call 541-266-0901 or 541-267-3762 for more information or to schedule a tour.

www.oocities.org/tormento_khan/Marshfield_Sun/msun.html

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Places to enjoy and relax

The City has several wonderful parks for residents and visitors to enjoy.

Mingus Park and Mingus Park Pool

Eastside Park

Ed Lund Park

Hollering Place Wayside

John Topits Park

Taylor/Wasson Park

Windy Hill Park

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Three jewels of the South Coast showcase magnificent views and spectacular gardens

2015 City of Coos Bay tree at Shore Acres Holiday Lights

A trio of state parks are located just 13 miles southwest of Coos Bay: Sunset Bay State Park, Shore Acres State Park, and Cape Arago State Park.

Sunset Bay State Parkoffers extensive picnic and overnight camping facilities, with a spectacular half-moon bay boasting shallow swimming areas and sandy beaches.

Shore Acres State Park features the luxurious gardens from the original estate of pioneer lumberman and shipbuilder Louis J. Simpson. A fully enclosed observation building now occupies the site of Simpson's mansions, offering spectacular view of rugged seascapes, towering storm waves, and glimpses of migrating whales from December through June. The extensive gardens are home to carefully curated plants from around the world, featuring stunning seasonal blooms and a holiday light display from Thanksgiving to New Year's Eve. Shore Acres Holiday Lights has over 300,000 holiday lights with numerous light sculptures and 30 large trees decorated by community groups, including one by the City of Coos Bay.

One mile to the south, Cape Arago State Park has outstanding overlooks, hiking trails, picnic tables, and excellent opportunities for viewing tidepools life and marine mammals (whales, seals, and sea lions).

A hiking trail, which is part of the Coast Trail, connects the three parks.

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