Mill Ends Park is the world's smallest public park
, located in Portland, OR
. Yes, of course. Portland.
How small? Well, the park is 24" long. Right. Read that correctly. Inch
es. That's not some Spinal Tap
ish confusion between the ' and " symbols. We're talking two feet long. Or more accurately, 2" in diameter. Mill Ends Park is located in the middle of a concrete median strip along Portland's river-front Naito Parkway
In 1946, a newspaper columnist for the Oregon Journal
named Dick Fagan noticed from his office that the city had dug a hole in the median, ostensibly to put a lamp post in the ground. Time when by and no lamp post was ever installed. In his "Mill Ends" column, he began to speculate that the dirt hole wasn't really for a lamp post but was actually a city park. Many of his columns began to focus on imagined happenings in said park.
His musing caught on with locals and people began a campaign
to turn the dirt patch into an actual park. The city eventually agreed and, in commemoration of Dick Fagan's Irish roots, on St. Patrick's Day
1948 the city officially added Mill Ends to their park list, all 425 square inches of it. The plaque the city erected at the park's edge ended up being bigger than the park itself.
And what takes place in a park of this, err, size? Well, no Frisbee
or sun bathing, certainly. Residents tend to maintain the park in a rather waggish
fashion. For a time the park had a miniature swimming pool for butterflies, complete with a diving board. Another time a miniature Ferris wheel
was installed with some amount of ceremony
. A full sized crane was used to install the tiny Ferris wheel. It's also the site of an annual snail
Yep! Only in Portland!