What is it Like to Live in St. Helens, OR

Located in the Pacific Northwest, St. Helens, Oregon, is a small town with a big heart and a rich history. Known for its vibrant community spirit, closeness to Portland, and claim to fame as the filming location for the movie “Halloweentown”. St. Helens offers a unique living and working experience.

St. Helens is a beautiful place to live, from its cost of living and job opportunities to the weather, recreational activities, and more. To help you imagine what it’s like, the fine folks at Northwest Self Storage put together the following in-depth information about the town just for you!

St. Helens is a Friendly City

Living in St. Helens blends small-town charm with the convenience of big-city amenities. The community is known for its friendly residents and a sense of camaraderie that you usually only find in much smaller towns. The town’s historic downtown, with its beautifully preserved buildings and architecture, offers a glimpse into its past while hosting a variety of excellent modern shops and upscale restaurants.

The Job Market in St. Helens is Strong

St. Helens’ job market is relatively strong, with opportunities in various sectors, including manufacturing, retail, healthcare, and education. The town’s proximity to Portland also means that residents can (relatively) easily commute to the city for work, opening up many more job possibilities in larger corporations, specialized industries, and various sectors.

St. Helens Has a Relatively Affordable Cost of Living

The cost of living in St. Helens is generally more affordable than in Portland and other major cities in Oregon. Housing costs are lower, making it an attractive option for those looking to buy a home without the high price tag of many other cities. Renting in St. Helens is also feasible for those looking to save money for a home.

According to Best Places, the cost of living index in St. Helens is 114/100, only 14 points above the national average. One cost in Saint Helens that is relatively high, however, is transportation, with a cost index of 137/100. Housing costs are lower than that at 125/100, only 25 points above the US average. They are, however, 25 points lower than the Oregon average. Surprisingly, utilities are incredibly affordable, with a cost index of 75/100, which is good news when cold winter weather rolls around.

The Weather in St. Helens is Mostly Mild

St. Helens experiences a typical Pacific Northwest climate. You can expect wet winters with moderate temperatures and some snow,  plus dry, warm summers. The weather is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy the changing seasons and the lush green landscape that the rain brings to St. Helens.

The most pleasant months in St. Helens are July through September, although August is the hottest month, with an average temperature of about 81°F. St. Helens sees quite a bit of snow in February, although you’ll be glad to know that, as far as humidity goes, it’s almost never bothersome.

St. Helens is Very Close to Portland, OR

Pink sunset over the Portland Skyline

One of the biggest perks of living in St. Helens is that it’s close to Portland, just a 30-minute drive away. This allows you to enjoy the best of both worlds, including the tranquility of small-town St. Helens and the hustle and bustle of a major city. Portland’s cultural scene, shopping, dining, and professional opportunities are just a short drive away when you want a bit more nightlife and excitement.

There are Many Fun and Interesting Things to Do in St. Helens

St. Helens is always full of activities, especially for those who love the outdoors. Picturesque landscapes, rivers, and parks surround the town, ideal for hiking, biking, fishing, and boating. Additionally, the town hosts various events throughout the year, including the famous Spirit of Halloweentown celebration, attracting visitors from all over.


St. Helens is famously known as the filming location for the Disney movie “Halloweentown.” Each year, the town transforms into a Halloween wonderland, drawing fans and tourists from all over the country. The festival includes pumpkin lighting, parades, and various spooky-themed activities, making it a unique and exciting time to be in the town, especially for children.

Hiking, Jogging, and Exploring

For hiking enthusiasts, St. Helens is a delight! The town is surrounded by hiking trails that cater to all skill levels, from easy in-and-out trails to challenging hikes that take several hours to complete. Whether you desire a leisurely walk along the Columbia River or a more challenging hike in the nearby forests, there’s something for everyone and every skill level.


During the winter, you can enjoy skiing and snowboarding very close to St. Helens, with several slopes within a short drive. Oregon’s snowy landscape provides the perfect backdrop for winter sports enthusiasts and is a treat for those who love winter activities.

Columbia Botanical Gardens

This beautiful Columbia Botanical Garden is one of the most beautiful places in St. Helens to see all the local flora in one place. It’s also an excellent spot for a leisurely walk or a first date.

St. Helens Riverfront Farmers Market

From early spring until late summer, the St. Helens Riverfront Farmer’s Market offers some of the best local produce in the area. They also have artisan goods and handmade crafts. You can enjoy live music and a fun, vibrant atmosphere there.

St. Helens Marina

St. Helens Marina during fall time

St. Helens Marina offers boat and kayak rentals for peaceful exploration of the Columbia River. Even if you don’t go on the water, it’s a great place for a stroll to enjoy the scenery and fresh air.

Store Your Things Safely in St. Helens with Northwest Self Storage

Whether you’ve just arrived or lived in St. Helens your entire life, Northwest Self Storage is the best choice when you need to store your valuables. If you’re unsure of the size storage unit you need, please check out our storage unit size guide for help. Once you’re ready, reserve your storage unit in St. Helens on our website. Until then, we hope the information about St. Helens we’ve provided today has been helpful and given you the insight and data you were searching for!