Bend boosters like to quote the statistic that we get 300 days of sunshine here -- it counteracts the Oregon = rain perception people hold. Everyone quotes the same number: 300. Realtors, the Chamber of Commerce, the medical clinic, golf resorts and the local HVAC company all repeat this frequently. (With the notable exception of a surly curmudgeon whose entire blog exists to dispute this number.) I'm not sure how the "300 days" stat was compiled, but I'm just saying we'd better see sunshine non-stop through New Year's if we're going to hit that this year.
Due to the frequent brilliant sunshine there's a interesting phenomenon that occurs in Central Oregon around February and March. By now we're seriously bored with winter and start to believe that sun = spring. People shed the down and fleece and run around in shorts and t-shirts. Myself, I stop wearing jackets to work and start leaving the doors open, until I realize I'm freezing. 35 degrees is 35 degrees whether it's December or May.
(There's a subset of guys who wear shorts year-round here. They tend to be of three kinds: snowboarders, 30-something dads who pretend they're snowboarders, and the UPS guy. The shorts are the long cargo-type, so at least we're spared large flashes of goosebumpy flesh.)
The kids immediately wear tank tops (gals) or take their shirts off (dudes) and hang around the park downtown. By the way, I seem to have turned into the kind of mom who says: "Those children must be freezing!" How did that happen?
Then it turns gray and cold and rainy again and we remember it's only February.