Bend Oregon History: Old Mill District

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Old Mill District

The Bend, Oregon Old Mill District is rich with history. This retail and residential center offers both visitors and locals an interesting mix of unique places for shopping, dining, and entertainment.

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  • An interesting mix of residential areas, shops, restaurants, galleries, museums, and parks.
  • Formerly the site of two of the largest sawmills in the world.
  • Home of the annual Balloons Over Bend hot air balloon festival.
  • Located just south of downtown Bend along the beautiful Deschutes River.


One of the most interesting sections of Bend is the 270-acre Old Mill District just south of downtown. Built on the land that once housed two of the world’s largest sawmills, the Bend Oregon Old Mill District attracts people from all over to explore its distinct blend of shops, restaurants, galleries, museums, parks, and residential units. With beautiful views of the Deschutes River and surrounding mountain peaks, Bend’s Old Mill District is a delightful place to visit.

Location & Information

The Old Mill District, Bend, Oregon, is located just south of downtown.

Contact Information

Old Mill District, 520 SW Powerhouse Dr # 626, Bend, OR 97702. Phone: 541-312-0131 or 800-800-8334. Visit the Old Mill District, Bend, OR official website here.


Aside from a plethora of shopping and dining, Old Mill district offers rich insight into the past saw mill industry. There are lovely gardens to explore and a river trail that streams along the Deschutes River. There is also a beach and river-side playground with a lumber theme.

Fun Facts

Each June, “Balloons Over Bend” takes place at Old Mill District. This fun and magical festival sends countless brightly colored hot air balloons into the clear blue skies above the city.

The two sawmills that were originally on the property ran for 78 years and, at one point, employed over 4,000 people.