Peacock Lane

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Peacock Lane Historic District
Photograph of a house at night, with a high, peaked roof outlined with decorative lights
House on the street, decorated for the holiday season
Locator map
Locator map
Locator map
Locator map
Locator map
Locator map
LocationPortland, Oregon, roughly along SE Peacock Lane between SE Stark and Belmont Streets
Coordinates45°31′05″N 122°37′18″W / 45.518°N 122.6218°W / 45.518; -122.6218Coordinates: 45°31′05″N 122°37′18″W / 45.518°N 122.6218°W / 45.518; -122.6218
Area5 acres (2.0 ha)[1]
Built byRichard F. Wassell
ArchitectRichard F. Wassell
Architectural stylePrimarily English Cottage and Tudor Revival; some Colonial Revival and Spanish Revival
MPSHistoric Residential Suburbs in the United States, 1830-1960 MPS[1]
NRHP reference #100001774
Added to NRHPOctober 30, 2017

Peacock Lane is a four-block street in southeast Portland, Oregon, in the United States. It is known for its fully decorated homes during the Christmas and holiday season.[2] During this time of year, thousands of people come visit to view the decorated houses. The street was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2017.[3]


The "Peacock Lane Grinch"

The tradition of decorating the houses along Peacock Lane with festive lights and displays dates back to the 1920s.[4] It's been an annual event ever since but it was interrupted during World War 2 while the United States was rationing valuable resources that included electricity.

Many homeowners often pass along their decorations to new residents when they sell their property. While they're not under any sort of contractual obligation to decorate, most opt to do so.[5]

Popular annual displays include several Peanuts characters ice-skating on a small pond, a plywood Oregon State Beaver and a large wooden Grinch from How the Grinch Stole Christmas! that has been a staple since the 1980s. The Grinch has been vandalized several times over the years. It was stolen for a brief period in 1994 and was decapitated in 1997. The Grinch now has a red bow tied around his neck to help conceal the damages.[6] More recent displays feature characters from Dr. Who, The Muppets, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Star Wars and several Nickelodeon cartoon shows. A life-sized mural of Will Ferrell's "Buddy" from the 2003 film Elf adorns a small stand that sells hot chocolate and coffee.[7] [8]

As the annual tradition has become increasingly popular, residents on the lane have cited their concerns over vandalism, heavy crowds and even public urination. To help combat these problems, the street is now closed to automobiles on certain evenings. The Portland Police department has also stepped up patrols and employs officers to direct traffic during busier hours.[9]

In June 2017, the area was nominated for listing on the National Register of Historic Places and earned the designation later that November.[10][3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Fuenmayor, Ernestina (March 1, 2017), National Register of Historic Places Registration Form: Peacock Lane Historic District (PDF) (Draft for review by State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation), retrieved April 28, 2017.
  2. ^ Potter, Connie (December 2005). "Streetscape: Peacock Lane -- New owners move in, but show goes on". The Oregonian. Retrieved January 1, 2007.
  3. ^ a b National Park Service (November 3, 2017), Weekly List of Actions Taken on Properties: 10/27/2017 through 11/2/2017, archived from the original on November 4, 2017, retrieved November 4, 2017.
  4. ^ Binder, Melissa (December 24, 2013). "Peacock Lane 2013: New and longtime residents share perspective on Christmas tradition". The Oregonian.
  5. ^ "Peacock Lane FAQ". Peacock Lane Website. 2017.
  6. ^ Murphy, Todd (October 30, 2009). "Bright Lights, Big Traffic". Portland Tribune. Retrieved December 7, 2012.
  7. ^ M., Michelle (January 8, 2014). "Peacock Lane in Portland, Oregon". Lil Bit. Retrieved January 2, 2015.
  8. ^ Harlan, Kohr (December 15, 2014). "Peacock Lane: Portland's Christmas Street". KOIN. Retrieved June 24, 2017.
  9. ^ Boyle, Pat (December 19, 2011). "Peacock Lane Neighbors Upset With Crowds". KXL-FM. Retrieved December 7, 2012.
  10. ^ Harden, Kevin (June 22, 2017) [published online June 16]. "Peacock Lane in line for historic status: Enclave nominated as example of 'early automobile suburb'". Portland Tribune. p. A1. Retrieved June 24, 2017.

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