Welcome to Bend, Oregon—the land of outdoor adventures, craft beers, and a thriving “fun economy.” In recent years, this small but vibrant city has emerged as one of the hottest destinations for thrill-seekers and leisure lovers alike.
Whether you’re into mountain biking, paddleboarding, or simply enjoying a laid-back weekend with friends and family, Bend has it. In fact, Bend’s naturally outdoorsy culture makes it an ideal place for the “afternoon fun economy.” From visiting craft breweries to midday paddleboarding, there are countless opportunities for remote and flex workers alike to take advantage of this growing trend.
What exactly is the “afternoon fun economy?”
The “fun economy” is a term used to describe the growing trend of people spending money on experiences. This shift in spending is mostly driven by Millennials, who are looking to connect with the community and prioritize meaningful experiences.
However, the fun economy is becoming more popular midweek among remote and flex workers. With the flexibility of their work arrangements, many professionals are now lengthening their workdays or adopting non-traditional working hours to make time for leisure activities like hair salon visits, golf games, and workouts during “normal” work hours.
Here, we’ll share some of the ways Bend, Oregon, remote workers can take advantage of the afternoon fun economy.
1. Go on an adventure
With so much natural beauty to explore, Bend is the perfect place for an outdoor adventure. Whether you’re hiking up Pilot Butte or mountain biking through Phil’s Trail Network, there’s no shortage of activities to keep you busy.
The Deschutes River Trail, which runs alongside The Haven Coworking, is a popular destination for dog walking and mild hiking. In fact, this trail stretches 12 miles along the Deschutes River, offering scenic views along the way.
Haven Coworking members can enjoy complimentary day-use rentals to go paddle boarding along the Deschutes River, just steps from our coworking space.
2. Experience the local food and drink scene
From breweries and distilleries to farm-to-table restaurants, Bend’s food and drink scene is not to be missed. Locals love to frequent Bend’s 32 microbreweries, including the popular Deschutes Brewery and nearby Cascade Lakes Brewing Company. Moreover, longer and later lunch dates are more accessible to flex workers looking to avoid the midday rush and extend the leisurely experience.
3. Take in the views
Bend is home to some incredible scenery, and there are plenty of ways to experience this. One of the quickest and easiest spots to get to is Pilot Butte. This extinct volcano offers panoramic views of Bend and the surrounding area. Or, take the short drive out to Tumalo Mountain—a popular hiking spot that offers stunning views of the Three Sisters mountains and the surrounding area.
If you’re willing to make the drive to Northern Central Oregon, Smith Rock State Park is a must-visit. The park offers breathtaking views of the Crooked River Canyon and the rock formations that are popular with climbers.
Head in the opposite direction down the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway for a beautiful drive with views of the Cascade Mountains. During the summer, you can stop at Sparks Lake where you’ll catch views of Mount Bachelor and the surrounding peaks. It’s a great spot for kayaking, fishing, and picnicking!
4. Family-friendly fun
Some of the best perks of flex work for parents is the ability to spend more quality time with kids. Go for a midday climb at Bend Rock Gym or The Circuit, where children as young as four can participate in the fun.
For a farm-to-table experience, head to Redmond’s Well Rooted Farms between July and October for U-pick veggies and flowers at their family-owned farm. Or, experience one of Central Oregon’s most beautiful buttes during the summer. At Lava Lands Visitors Center, you can take a shuttle up the cylindrical road to the top of Lava Butte for excellent views. During the springtime, families can purchase permits and drive up the butte for a similar experience.
Afternoon Fun Economy for Remote Workers in Bend, Oregon
Afternoon fun in Bend, Oregon is full of possibilities! Whether you are looking for outdoor activities to explore the stunning landscape or an indoor activity that puts a new spin on your afternoon routine, there is something for everyone. Start your afternoon fun at The Haven Coworking, where our members can access the Deschutes River Trail, Deschutes River kayaking and paddle boarding, and Old Mill District shopping—all just steps from our riverfront address.
Start your trial coworking membership for just $149 for your first month. Get access to our flex space, private and rentable rooms, unlimited beverages, and lightning-fast fiber optic Wi-Fi. And, of course, built-in community.
Meet the author
Haven Member, Social Media Manager