College Lacrosse Player Johnathan Gritzmacher on what Portland and Oregon Means to Him.

We asked one of our student athletes, Johnathan what his experience growing up in Portland has meant to him and what he enjoys outside of the classroom at Oregon State University.

Living in Portland is honestly one of the coolest things for somebody that loves the outdoors. The coast, mountains, forests, and rivers are all just a short drive in any direction you choose. Whether it's surfing, skiing, hiking, camping, rafting, or you just like to get out and explore, this is the absolute perfect place to be. Ever since I can remember, sports have been a part of my life. Whether it was football or lacrosse, it felt like at times I had my cleats on more than my shoes.

In high school, I decided to solely focus on lacrosse and work hard to play in college. Oregon has been my home for almost 22 years now and is by far my favorite place in the whole world, so why wouldn’t I decide to stay here after high school–even better, Oregon State University had a competitive lacrosse team and more importantly, did not change my location all to drastically. When I am not on the field or in the classroom, I like to drive out to the coast with my buddies to surf or go camping wherever my friends and I can pitch a tent. It is easy to get out of the house and get active when the scenery outside is so exciting! Playing in college, I have had the privilege of traveling for games in other states and it always seems fun to think about visiting these places, but over the last four years, I have found myself appreciating Oregon even more through these experiences. Yes, it rains here–a lot–but because of that we have a pretty moderate climate, our fields are always green, and on the sunny days, I think everyone can agree, this state is beautiful. There are almost endless amounts of thick forests, clear streams, and rolling hills running through Oregon’s countryside and Grafletics does an amazing job embodying all the best parts this state has to offer.

I have lived in Sellwood my whole life so I obviously noticed when a cool new athletic apparel shop popped up just down the street. Going in for the first time I had no idea what to expect, but when I got inside, every new piece I picked up for the first time I thought, “I need this.” I was super excited to partner with Grafletics when they gave me the opportunity and am even more hyped to be repping high-quality athletic gear that’s all about Oregon. Swing by the store and meet the crew, everyone that works there is super chill and chances are you’ll make a few new friends if you come by enough.

Thanks for reading!

Jonathan Gritzmacher

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