Portland Neighborhood's Blog

Portland Neighborhood Website : Blog Home : November 2005

November 1, 2005 06:47 - Calling All Locals! Win $10 Gift Certificate

Calling all locals! PortlandNeighborhood.com is looking for the scoop on ten Portland neighborhoods and will award the top ten submissions (one per neighborhood) a $10 gift certificate to Amazon.com. The site is brand new, and we need your help in getting each neighborhood page completed. There's no one who can tell the story better than the people who live there...YOU!

We're looking for a local's take on how each neighborhood stacks up:

  • Vibe (hip, earthy, family-friendly, bike-friendly, overall "feel" of the neighborhood, etc)
  • Best place to eat (and why you love it)
  • Best place for coffee (and why it makes you weak in the knees)
  • Your favorite destination spot (entertainment or other)
  • Great parks and trails
  • Information on housing (how easy it is to buy or rent homes/apartments)
  • Misc....Anything else you want to add to make your submission stand out!

The neighborhoods we are targeting this week are:

Arbor Lodge

Overlook

Cathedral Park

Piedmont

East Columbia

Portsmouth

Hayden Island

University Park

Kenton

St. Johns

To submit your review of one of these neighborhoods go to: PortlandNeighborhood's Neighborhood Submissions Page and tell is all about your neighborhood. Or, if you prefer, just shoot us an Email.

We are excited to see your submissions and will contact the winners by email on November 6th. If your neighborhood isn't on the list, don't worry--more neighborhoods are coming soon...!

Thanks for your input, Portland, on making this site an honest reflection of Portland's neighborhoods!

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November 1, 2005 16:14 - NE News - Mayor's Meeting Tonight!

Important news for folks in the Northeast neighborhoods! There is a meeting tonight you may want to attend. Details below:

City of Portland Office of Mayor Tom Potter October 26, 2005

MAYOR POTTER INVITES YOU TO A COMMUNITY MEETING ON DRUG FREE/PROSTITUTION FREE ZONE POLICY Tuesday, November 1st, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm.

Emmanuel Temple Community Center
1032 N Sumner St, Portland, 97217

On Tuesday, November 1st, Mayor Tom Potter and the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods will convene a meeting to receive community input about the current drug-free and prostitution-free zone ordinance. The meeting will be held at Emmanuel Temple, 1032 N Sumner St, Portland, 97217, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm.

While the policy was scheduled for reauthorization by City Council earlier this month, Mayor Potter and City Commissioners voted to extend the current drug-free and prostitution-free ordinance by 90 days to allow time for public input on proposed changes to the code. Drug-free zones were first implemented in 1992 in an effort to curb street-level drug dealing within certain designated boundaries. Later, the ordinance was expanded to include prostitution. The November 1st meeting marks the first of three to be held during the months of November, December, and January to listen to concerned community members and residents who reside within the zones. For more information, please call the Mayor's Office at 503.823.3583.

-Carmen Caballero Rubio
Director of Community Affairs
Office of Mayor Tom Potter
1221 SW 4th Avenue, Suite 340
Portland, Oregon 97204
Ph (503) 823-3578

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November 2, 2005 06:50 - Dance Classes in Portland

Yesterday while I was driving to work, I was listening to 94/7fm and they were playing their "8 at 8" song selections, which happened to be a dance-related theme. Dancing is great fun, and luckily, Portland offers many choices for you to get your groove on.

The popularity of the TV show "So You Think you Can Dance" has inspired many people to get out and take dance lessons. Ballroom, Swing, Irish, Latin, Hip Hop...you name it...we've got it in Portland. Listed below are just a few of the venues in Portland where you can take dance classes. I am personally taking salsa classes at the Satin and Latin dance studio from "Portland's Salsa King", Remos Reynosa, and it is great fun..and great exercise! So, here you are, a list of Portland Dance Classes:

I am sure there are many I have overlooked, so feel free to click the "Comments" below and add more to the list!

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November 3, 2005 06:56 - TriMet News, and Site Changes

First, some news for TriMet riders:

Steel Bridge closed to MAX service on Sunday 11/6

Additional repair work halts train service

November 2, 2005

"Repairs to the eastside approach to the Steel Bridge will occur this Sunday, November 6, and will prevent MAX trains from crossing the bridge. Shuttle buses will carry riders across the bridge during the work. Since more buses will be using the bridge for the shuttle service, it's recommended that vehicular traffic use an alternate bridge. That same day the Broadway Bridge will be closed from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m." - Read the rest of the story on the Steel Bridge and other changes to scheduling.

Of course if you ride TriMet for transportation every day, by now you have probably heard of the rate increase, effective January 1, 2006. This is due to the high costs of diesel fuel. Diesel rates are currently 45% over what TriMet has budgeted. From the TriMet website:

The January 1, 2006 fare increase includes:

  • 15-cent fare increase for regular adult cash fares; $6 increase for monthly passes
  • 10-cent fare increase for Youth/Student and Honored Citizen cash fares; $2 increase for monthly passes
  • To offset the impact of the fare increase, TriMet is introducing a new 7-day rolling pass. It provides the convenience and savings of a monthly pass, but allows a rider to purchase it in smaller increments.

Read the rest of the story on the rate increases and other changes on TriMet's website.

Now, onto another topic--changes to the www.portlandneighborhood.com website.

The site is still in it's infancy, but already we are receiving great feedback from our Portland Neighbors, with input on what you want to see, changes we should make to the site, and possible additions and improvements. We are listening! Thanks to your feedback, you will notice a few changes on the site:

We are splitting the Portland Directory into multiple pages, based on input that it was growing too long and cumbersome to browse on one page. All of the Portland Directory is still here-but will soon be located under navigation buttons off the Home Page.

Changes were made this week to Boise and Eliot pages, based on neighbor feedback that these neighborhoods, while often called by the name "Boise-Eliot", are two distinct communities.

Also, our thanks to fellow Portlanders for their input, as well as kind words of support for our brand new website:

"Thanks for your website. It is great and you are doing a good service." -Joan M. (looking at moving to PDX)

"You guys, this is fab!!!!!!!!! Thank you for such a great write up!" -Pam, North Star Coffee House, Piedmont Neighborhood

From St. John's resident Kelly Tadlock who provided a fantastic write-up for the St. Johns page (her additions are coming soon). Here is an excerpt: "The best Restaurants are Cafe Nola with Lousiana Cajun inspired fare & the best gumbo on the face of the earth--Jambalaya from heaven & chocolate pie to die for!" - Kelly Tadlock, of Kelly's Housekeeping & Cat Sitting Services, (503) 234-6226, St. Johns

Also, our thanks to two local Realtors for expressing their interest in our site: Bill Berger of The Hasson Company Realtors (541-330-8555) and Rambo "The Bungalow Guy" Halpern of REMAX Signature Properties (503 473-4127).

Coming this weekend, we'll make more additions to our individual neighborhood pages, we will start adding business directory listings, and coming soon--how to advertise on our site.

Finally, don't forget it's not too late to enter this week's contest to win a $10 gift certificate!

Thanks Portland, and get ready for another great weekend!

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November 4, 2005 06:49 - Supporting Local Business

Hello Portlanders!

It's fall, raining buckets, and its dark at 5pm! Are you ready for a long and wet winter? I am! I have to admit, I am appreciating autumn more this year than any year in recent memory. Vibrantly colored leaves and those on and off sunshine days are a fantastic combination. Everywhere I go, I am presented with one of a kind photo ops (to the novice photographer!) thus am a little snap-happy as of late. The photo above was taken at Portland University. Make sure to check back with us on Sundays for the ‘Portland Photo of the Week’ (on the bottom of our home page). If you would like to send us a stunning photo of your own, please feel free! You never know, maybe it will grace our lovely (and ever changing) page!

Last night I attended a charity event down at Stumptown Coffee on 4th and Ash. The charity was held by a new company called Lucina which is owned and operated by a wonderful woman by the name of Shauna Mohr. Shauna works with fair-trade importers to buy handcrafted beads and pendants from talented craftspeople in Colombia and Ecuador. She then works with local Portland artists to bring to life what she calls "inspired indulgences". Shauna’s mission (and her passion) is in supporting fair-trade commerce and a global marketplace accessible by all. Last evening’s charity event raised over $2,500 which will be given back to the workshops in the developing world. I met a lot of great people and some very gifted artists and had a fantastic time.

Since the event was hosted at Stumptown and fair-trade was the foremost thought on the minds of most folks there, we discussed Stumptown Coffee and the good that they are doing for the farmers that grow the beans that Stumpie's so lovingly roasts. Stumptown Coffee is a fierce supporter of organic and fair-trade coffee. I’m told that the owner of Stumptown has been known to buy beans from farmers at 200-300% over market, in many cases, to save the farm from collapse. I think this is rather amazing and so very inspiring. I am proud to support local businesses like Stumptown and can definitely see why they were voted "Best Portland Coffee Shop 2005" by the readers of Willamette Week.

Today, why not go out and support one of your local neighborhood businesses, and give a little something back to the Portland community?

Don't forget, it's not too late to get in our our neighborhood Contest of the Week. Write about your neighborhood and you could win a $10 Amazon gift certificate!

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November 5, 2005 08:48 - Happy Saturday, Portland!

Photo Above - Irving Park 11/04/05

It's the weekend, and that means my favorite time to get out and explore Portland so I can add more content to our ever-growing and changing website.

Wet weather in our city means we are all looking for more indoor activity choices. So, today I am heading out to Downtown, to check out the Portland Art Museum's latest exhibit, "Hesse - A Princely German Collection". Whether you consider yourself the artsy type or not, it is nice to take a leisurely stroll through the museum, and find some inspiration. Personally, I find my own creativity is sparked after each visit to the musuem, and Portland is lucky to have such a fine art museum centrally located in downtown.

Next up on the PortlandNeighborhood.com website modifications, we have made some changes to the layout of the Neighborhoods page, because this is where a large amount of our content resides. Eventually, we will have a full write-up with photos of every single neighborhood! We still have a lot of work to do, so thanks to everyone who continues to submit write-ups of their neighborhood. We appreciate the emails and feedback!

Have you heard of www.MySpace.com? It is a great place to find local friends, so we created a MySpace page for everyone who wants to follow the progress of this website. Go check it out at PortlandNeighborhood's MySpace Page!

That's all for now--I am headed out to do more Portland neighborhood research. Check back later for my write up on the art exhibit, new restaurant reviews, and more neighborhood pages. Tomorrow we announce the winners of our weekly Contest, so check back. It's not too late to submit your neighborhood!

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November 6, 2005 08:20 - Portland Art Museum - Hesse Exhibit

Yesterday, I visited the Portland Art Museum to see the "Hesse: A Princely German Collection" exhibit. The art museum is always a great place to visit on a rainy Saturday afternoon. If you are a German royalty or history buff, you will enjoy the display, which includes artwork in many forms that run the gamut--from an amazing gilded beechwood, velvet and leather royal carriage, to antique furniture, German silver, oil paintings, military paraphernalia, and jewelry including royal brooches, cameos, miniature watercolor portraits painted on ivory, and two amazing diamond tiaras. All in all, there are 400 some items to view in the collection.

Just a few of my personal favorites included a tiara designed with sparkling diamond "chaffs of wheat", with enough rocks to fill a thousand engagement rings. The portrait that most caught my attention and imagination was not the main feature of the exhibit, the "Darmstadt Madonna", but the stunningly beautiful "Landgrafin Anna of Hesse" painted in 1858 by Franz Xaver Winterhalter. I also enjoyed the massive gilded throne, with claw feet and red velvet, right next to a fine oil painting that displays the image of that very throne. And I admit, I wanted to own the amazing bronze and stained glass table lamp, designed by Peter Behrens. Yes, I imagine I would have enjoyed the indulgent life as a royal. Beauty, of course, is in the eye of the beholder, so you will have to check out this exhibit for yourself to see if anything strikes your fancy. You can enjoy the Hesse exhibit through March 19th. General admission is $15, and $13 for students and seniors. Museum hours are 10am - 5pm Tuesday and Wednesday, and 10am - 8pm Thursday and Friday. Weekend hours are Saturday 10am - 5pm, and Sunday noon- 5pm (museum is closed on Monday).

Also, today (Sunday, November 6) at 2pm, you can catch the Curator's talk on the painting "Darmstadt Madonna", (also known as the "Holbein Madonna"), painted by Hans Holbein the Younger. This painting is recognized as one of the most valuable Old Master paintings in private collection and is represented as the crown jewel in the collection. If you are interested in attending the lecture, go to the Whitsell Auditorium at least 10 minutes early, at 1219 SW Park Ave. Admission is $10 and does not include admission to the museum and the Hesse exhibit. Call 503-226-0973 for more information.

Today is the day we announce our weekly contest winners, so check our other blog post today to see who won, and to read about this week's NEW CONTEST!

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November 6, 2005 08:41 - Portland Neighborhood Weekly Contest Winner!

Last Week's Contest was a call out to Portland locals to write in with your information on the following neighborhoods:

Arbor Lodge

Overlook

Cathedral Park

Piedmont

East Columbia

Portsmouth

Hayden Island

University Park

Kenton

St. Johns

Our winner this week is Kelly Tadlock, a St. Johns local, for the wonderful submission! Our BIG THANKS to Kelly for taking the time to describe how wonderful it is to live and work in St. Johns. Be sure to read the St. Johns page for Kelly's additions!

We didn't get submissions for all the neighborhoods on the contest list this week, so in case you missed your chance, those neighborhoods will be included again, along with this week's new contest. The new contest will be announced in our next Blog posting.

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November 6, 2005 15:54 - New Weekly Contest - Calling all Locals!

Calling all locals! PortlandNeighborhood.com is looking for the scoop on our Portland neighborhoods and will award the top submissions (one per neighborhood) a $10 gift certificate to Powells. The site is brand new, and we need your help in getting each neighborhood page completed. There's no one who can tell the story better than the people who live there...YOU!

We're looking for a local's take on how each neighborhood stacks up:

  • Vibe (hip, earthy, family-friendly, bike-friendly, overall "feel" of the neighborhood, etc)
  • Best place to eat (and why you love it)
  • Best place for coffee (and why it makes you weak in the knees)
  • Your favorite destination spot (entertainment or other)
  • Great parks and trails
  • Information on housing (how easy it is to buy or rent homes/apartments)
  • Misc....Anything else you want to add to make your submission stand out!

The neighborhoods we are targeting this week are:

Arlington Heights

Forest Park

Goose Hollow

Hillside

Linnton

Northwest Heights

Nob Hill (21st/23rd Ave Area)

Sylvan Highlands

Arbor Lodge

Overlook

Cathedral Park

Piedmont

East Columbia

Portsmouth

Hayden Island

University Park

Kenton

To submit your review of one of these neighborhoods go to: PortlandNeighborhood's Neighborhood Submissions Page and tell is all about your neighborhood. Or, if you prefer, just shoot us an Email.

We are excited to see your submissions and will contact the winners by email on November 13th. If your neighborhood isn't on the list, don't worry--more neighborhoods are coming soon...!

Thanks for your input, Portland, on making this site an honest reflection of Portland's neighborhoods!

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November 7, 2005 06:34 - Review of Roux

Above Photo - A Typical Driver's View of Portland (downtown)

This weekend I made it out to the very popular new restaurant, Roux. Roux is located in North Portland, just about a block off the Interstate Max line at 1700 N. Killingsworth. That's right--if you don't mind a little stroll in the rain, you can take the MAX train and walk to Roux! Roux is located in the Overlook neighborhood, bordering Arbor Lodge. The dining room was bustling, and crowded with happy North Portlanders who are delighted to have a fairly swanky, new upscale restaurant plopped right into an area that is, without a doubt--up and coming. The waiter told me there is a plan to re-do the street with old gaslamps, to give it more of an old-timey village feel. Watch this area, Portland--it's going to be hot!

The service at Roux was attentive, warm, and welcoming. Even though they are less than two months old, they seem to have smoothed the bumps out and we didn't experience any noticeable service delays even though the place was packed. Roux offers up New Orleans inspired fare, with a French Cajun twist, with mostly seafood and meat dishes, and a focus on fresh local ingredients. For an appetizer, we sampled savory pumpkin fritters, ham salad "pate" on toast, and we selected a luscious bottle of red wine from their easy-to-follow wine list (all wines categorized by impression, like "soft and lush", or "light and fruity"). Dinner was tender roasted chicken with wild mushrooms, and a pork chop cooked to perfection in a smoky sauce, with side of whipped mashed potatoes. Ahhh yes, Southern comfort food! We couldn't end such a meal without dessert, so of course we went for the delectable bread pudding...mmmmm.

All in all, I found Roux to be a wonderful restaurant, and I definitely plan to return! If you want to try Roux, I suggest you call ahead to make reservations, unless you want to join the throngs of eager, hungry people waiting in line outside or standing at the bar! Phone: 503.285.1200.

This week, we will try to flesh out more information on the Overlook neighborhood, where Roux is located, with new photos and additional facts and information. If you haven't entered our Weekly contest yet--we are eager to hear from you!

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November 8, 2005 06:58 - Books by Portland Authors

Photo Above, Powell's Portland Books Section

This weekend I spent some time at one of Portland's all-time favorite bookstores, Powell's. After all, what could be better in this weather than to curl up with a good read in front of a fireplace or at your favorite Portland coffee house ?

Did you know that Powell's City of Books has a great section on Portland books, as well as many other Northwest-themed books? Check out "the Green Room", in Aisle 114 to find many interesting books about the Rose City. Here in the blog, we'll periodically share with you some of the gems that we uncover. This week, we'll start with a little Portland history lesson.

You never know what you might learn when you go looking to turn back the pages of time in Portland--our city has a mixed and interesting history. Listed below are a few book selections, along with descriptions from publishers and reviewers. I personally haven't gotten through reading them all, yet, but there are a lot of rainy days ahead...

Portland: People, Politics, and Power, 1851-2001, by Jewel Lansing

"Lansing shows that Portland's path to its present place as the twenty-eighth largest city in the United States, with a deserved reputation as one of the nation's most livable cities, has not always been smooth. Corruption, profiteering, and wide-open vice characterized the City of Roses at the turn of the twentieth century, and every era has had its own controversies and rivalries: disputes over railroad franchises and rights-of-way, women's suffrage, public versus private power, the Chinese Exclusion Act, Prohibition, and the siting of freeways, to name just a few. Anyone with an interest in Portland, and in learning more about the individuals, events, and issues that have shaped it, will find this comprehensive history fascinating and informative."

For more historical Portland noir, try on:

Portland Confidential: Sex, Crime, and Corruption in the Rose City, by Phil Stanford

"Phil Stanford's little bit of Portland noir, Portland Confidential, lays it out in all its gritty glory, rattling skeletons in the city's many musty closets....[Stanford] simply preserves some fantastic tales of a very different Portland." The Seattle Times

But wait, there's more...weirdness...afoot in Portland

Fugitives and Refugees: A Walk in Portland Oregon, by Chuck Palahniuk

"The author of the best-selling novel "Fight Club" reveals his favorite Portland, Oregon landmarks in this autobiographical travel guide that describes the City of Roses as "the home of America's fugitives and refugees." "Fugitives feels like a guide to Portland, but one written by and for a Portland resident....You can't go wrong by picking up a copy yourself, and joining...in the search for the minutia of Palahniuk's Portland." Erik Henriksen, The Portland Mercury

And finally, if you are interested in our city's musical past, you'll want to check out:

Jumptown: The Golden Years of Portland Jazz, 1942-1957, by Robert Dietsche

"A fascinating blend of music, politics, and social history, Jumptown sheds light on a time and place overlooked by histories of Portland and jazz. For a golden decade following World War II, a thriving African American neighborhood - that would soon be bulldozed for urban renewal - spawned a jazz heyday rarely rivaled on the West Coast. Such luminaries as Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, Oscar Peterson, Dave Brubeck, and Wardell Gray headlined Portland clubs and traded chops with the up-and-coming local talent."

Well, those are all the Portland-themed books for this week, but there are plenty more to share. I'll see you in the aisles at Powell's!

Do you have a favorite Portland book? What about a favorite bookstore in your neighborhood? Click the "Comment" below, and tell us about it!

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November 9, 2005 06:56 - Brooklyn to Sellwood Art Walk & Public Art Murals

Above Photo - Sunflower Life Cycle Mural in Humboldt

Good morning, Stumptown! The weather yesterday was a shocker to my system: from scraping a thin coat of ice off my windows in the morning to strolling around P-Town with my camera, enjoying the surprisingly sunny Portland day. Definitely a treat-- even if its dark at 5pm! (I know I keep mentioning the 'dark and 5pm' part but I just can't help myself...I'm not adjusted yet!)

So...mark your calendars for a really cool event that is coming up on November 19th and 20th, 10am-6pm: The second annual Brooklyn to Sellwood Art Walk (formerly known as the Sellwood Moreland Art Walk)! There are 36 Brooklyn and Sellwood artists lined up to show off their wares: painting, jewelry, furniture, mixed media, etchings, pottery and more! Enjoy some tasty nibblin's, music and the crisp northwest air as you stroll around, appreciating the artwork and the festivities. Note: Maps to the event are not uploaded yet so those interested can contact Lonnie Feather by email, or at 503-234-6642 or you can pick up maps from participating businesses such as: Ugly Mug Coffee and Hip Chicks Do Wine.

While on the subject of supporting local artists, I have to make mention of the absolutely fantastic mural, "Sunflower Life Cycle", which is proudly mounted on the exterior of the Albina Press coffee shop in Humboldt (North Portland). While I was picking up a latte and snap-snapping a few pictures yesterday, I had the good fortune of running into a great guy by the name of Mark who was involved in the birth of the mural. The work was done by the Native American Youth Association, Pacific Switchboard and a few neighborhood locals-- in just nine days. The 224 square foot plywood mural is simply stunning and should be on your list of "to-see" in Portland. If you would like to learn more about "public art", check out the Portland Regional Arts & Culture Council and the Public Murals Program.

Thanksgiving is a mere two weeks away! Are you ready to gorge until your buttons pop off and laze around watching those old-time classics like "A Christmas Story"? I am! I can barely fit into my clothes as it is (too much eating out and sitting on my butt working on a certain website) but hey...there is nothing better than good food and great friends. Have any recipes you want to share? If so, send 'em along-- I'm always on the lookout for new stuff to try!

Have a great day, Portland!

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November 10, 2005 06:54 - Featured Neighborhood - Hazelwood

Hazelwood, Ventura Park

Above Photo, Hazelwood

Our website is still quite new, and we are attempting to get all of the neighborhoods accurately reflected in the Neighborhood section as soon as possible. This week, we focused on learning more about the Hazelwood neighborhood.

While we will eventually personally visit every single neighborhood in Portland, we feel that each neighborhood can best be described by the locals-the residents and people who work there. This is why we hope to hear from more of you on your neighborhoods, and why we are hosting a weekly contest as a "call for entries" to get an honest reflection of each neighborhood. This week, we exchanged emails with Linda, of the Hazelwood neighborhood association, and she shared her input and feedback for her neighborhood page. Thanks to Linda, we learned quite a bit that we might not have otherwise known about the neighborhood and what is going on there. So, a BIG THANKS to Linda for her help! Listed below are a few highlights of Hazelwood. Be sure to read the page to view more information and photos of the area.

The Hazelwood neighborhood is located in East Portland. It is bordered by the Montavilla, Parkrose Heights, Russell, Glenfair, and Mill Park neighborhoods. Hazelwood is located along the TriMet MAX line, making for a very convenient light-rail commute.

Important issues in the area for Hazelwood neighbors include the Gateway Urban Renewal Project and the 122nd Avenue Station Area Study.

"The Gateway Regional Center is projected to be one of the most accessible locations in Portland Metro due to its superior transportation system. Developed by the community, the (renewal project) plan envisions upgrades to the transportation and open space networks in Gateway, as well as new housing, employment and public institutions such as an education and/or arts center."

"The 122nd Avenue Station Area Study is an analysis of land use, transportation, and regulatory issues in the vicinity of the 122nd and Burnside MAX station. The primary study area generally focuses on the land along 122nd Avenue between NE Glisan and SE Stark Streets in Portland, Oregon. A secondary study area encompasses a larger area from approximately NE Halsey to SE Mill Streets, and from 117th to 127th Avenues."

Once the area is fully redeveloped with improvements to the aesthetics of the area such as additional tree plantings and other upgrades to storefronts and community areas, given it's proximity to convenient transportation options, there is good potential that property values are likely to rise over the next several years.

To make sure YOUR neighborhood is accurately reflected on this website, send us an email, and don't forget to check the Weekly "Calling all Locals" contest for a chance to win a $10 Powell's gift certificate, just for telling us about your neighborhood. We very much appreciate your feedback and input, Portland!

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November 11, 2005 06:51 - Restaurant Review, Site Updates and More

Above Photo, Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden

We have another rave restaurant review for you, Puddletown... I went out to a long time fave last night for dinner...The Bombay Cricket Club on 20th and Hawthorne. Oh, *so good*!! Mouth watering, freshly made naan, tender tandoori prawns with delicate basmati rice...and cosmos to-die-for! I've been a huge fan of the Cricket Club for about 8 years now but rarely get the chance to go. If you've never been there-- try it-- you'll love it! Awesome service & perfect food. Reservations are recommended as they are enormously popular- they usually have at least 4-5 groups waiting to luck out and get a table....1925 SE Hawthorne Blvd 97214. Ph. 503 231-0740. Menu: A great vegetarian selection in addition to some drool-worthy meat dishes. Moderately priced.

So, I should have mentioned it earlier but...Happy Friday (whoooohooooo!!)! Its a great morning so far and the start of what promises to be a fantastic weekend! I plan on spending this weekend doing a little bit of yard work (arrrrrgggh, leaves!) and some "winter-prepping" (see the Home Winterizing Tips we posted on Oct. 31st for winterizing your home). Speaking of leaves, the City of Portland Online has information on the remaining Neighborhood Leaf Pick Up, where you can get rid of your leaves for $1 per car. I've got some major raking and gutter cleaning to do...I'm pretty sure we are going to see a rather cold winter and who knows when we will have our first official freeze- (speaking of which, turn over your favorite flower pots or take them into the garage so they don't fill with water, ice up and crack!!) its already been in the 30's at night!

For things to do near Portland, there is always a trip to the coast! On Sunday I am heading to the WPBA Nine-Ball Championship at Chinook Winds in Lincoln City. If you're a billiards fan, this is quite the score!! The very best women pool players from all over the world will be playing the event and I'm gonna have front row seats! Jeanette Lee, Alison Fisher-- yeah!!

Today's site changes: Piedmont got a mini-facelift (well, a botox treament ;-)...a few more pictures and the addition of a rather new cafe called The Albina Green (replacing the Small World Cafe). Check it out...excellent eats! Also, we are pleased to announce that you are now able to receive updates on neighborhood changes via the "RSS Feed" icon on each page. I've added it to my Yahoo! account and think it works rather nicely! Check it out...

That's all for today, Portland. We'll be back for another chat tomorrow! Have a great Friday...

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November 12, 2005 06:57 - Saturday's Portland Events

Above Photo, Peninsula Park

Another promising Portland weekend is here. Oh, but what to do? Here are just a few select entertainment ideas to consider tonight:

If you're in a theatre mood, you might want to check out the 7:30pm show "Les Liaisons Dangereuses" at the Lincoln Performance Hall. "Based on the 1782 novel by Choderlos de Laclos, Christopher Hampton's Broadway hit and Oscar-winning film ("Dangerous Liaisons") is a sordid tale of seduction, deception and betrayal." For more information and tickets, visit Citysearch.

Another show to try tonight is Portland Center Stage's adaptation of the classic Jane Austen novel, Pride and Prejudice. "Will Elizabeth get past her prejudice? Will Mr. Darcy over-come his pride? Ah, these are the questions for the ages."

To make it a date, have dinner at a nearby restaurant...you might consider French cuisine. If you want something a little more upscale to put you in a pre-show mood, dine at the Heathman (make reservations). Or, for more of a French Bistro experience, check out Le Bouchon, or Carafe.

If you are more in the mood for contemporary dance, tonight you can check out the show "Not Not Not Not Not Enough Oxygen". "An offbeat evening of song, dance, and theater featuring two playlets by Caryl Churchill that spin the future, repitition, cyclical situations, tortured love, and other mind-twisting body bends."

Of, check out the Osland + Co show at the Wonder Ballroom. "Oslund+Co./Dance presents an evening of both all new and developed repertory works with choreography by Mary Oslund..." Make this a date with dinner at Echo.

In the mood for Opera? Tonight at 7:30pm, you can listen to Puccini's "Tosca" at the Keller Auditorium. "...Tosca seethes with passion and drama. Trapped between the evil Scarpia's desire to kill her lover and his fiendish lust for her, Tosca lashes out in the only way that she can. Frantically. With a knife. And with that blood-letting, the audience is driven relentlessly to one of opera's most stunning conclusions."

Of course, the best way to make this a date is with some Italian fare. Try Pazzo Ristorante or drive over to Northwest and enjoy a cozy meal at Basta's Trattoria.

Have a fun Saturday, Portland!

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November 13, 2005 07:12 - Stumptown Sports

Above Photo, St. Johns

Well, I think the rain is here, and here to stay. Most of the people I know are starting to "nest", knowing the winter is upon us. Aside of lots of movie rentals, eating and bringing winter hobbies out of the closet (knitting, candle-making, stained glass, creative welding, compulsive raking, etc), fall and winter bring back other American favorite pastimes: sports!

Knowing how sports-crazed most folks are, I created a Stumptown Sports page containing information on the various Portland sports teams, venues and ticket brokers...I even found a great listing of the sports bars in Portland as we all know there is nothing better than watching a great game with friends, food and beer where you don't have to have to clean up afterwards...;-) Quite a few of my friends like to frequent Claudia's Sports Pub and Grill on Hawthorne for Sunday football....I'd love to know your favorite sports bars in Portland -- so please comment and share them with us.

Highlights for this week in P-Town Sports:

What about YOUR neighborhood sports? Did you know that we have a Calendar on each neighborhood page, and you can add your own events to it? Do you have a high school game and you want to get the word out? Just go to your neighborhood page, scroll down to the calendar, and just click the "Add" button to add your sports event (or any other events for that matter) to your own neighborhood web page.

If you need help or have questions, just Email Us.

Not in the mood for sports? How about getting out to watch a great show? Check out this link for the best site I've found on the Portland music scene-- from Old Country, Swing, to Rockabilly and more! Click around, and learn about some great venues !

Today I'm off to Lincoln City to watch the best women pool players in the world battle it out in the WPBA Nine-Ball Championship...I'll report back soon! Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

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November 14, 2005 06:37 - Weekly Contest #3 - Calling all Locals!

Calling all locals! PortlandNeighborhood.com is looking for the scoop on our Portland neighborhoods and will award the top submissions (one per neighborhood) a $10 gift certificate to Powells! The site is brand new, and we need your help in getting each neighborhood page completed. There's no one who can tell the story better than the people who live there...YOU!

We're looking for a local's take on how each neighborhood stacks up:

  • Vibe (hip, earthy, family-friendly, bike-friendly, overall "feel" of the neighborhood, etc)
  • Best place to eat (and why you love it)
  • Best place for coffee (and why it makes you weak in the knees)
  • Your favorite destination spot (entertainment or other)
  • Great parks and trails
  • Information on housing (how easy it is to buy or rent homes/apartments)
  • Misc....Anything else you want to add to make your submission stand out!

The neighborhoods we are targeting this week are:

Alameda Irvington
Alberta Arts District King
Beaumont-Wilshire Madison South
Boise Eliot Neighborhood & Historic Mississippi Avenue Rose City Park
Concordia Roseway
Cully Sabin
Eliot Sullivan's Gulch
Grant Park Sumner
Hollywood Vernon
Humboldt Woodlawn
And...because we didn't get all the entries we hoped for in last week's contest, these additional neighborhoods are still open for entry again this week:

Arlington Heights

Forest Park

Goose Hollow

Hillside

Linnton

Northwest Heights

Nob Hill (21st/23rd Ave Area)

Sylvan Highlands

Arbor Lodge

Overlook

Cathedral Park

Piedmont

East Columbia

Portsmouth

Hayden Island

University Park

Kenton

To submit your review of one of these neighborhoods go to: PortlandNeighborhood's Neighborhood Submissions Page and tell is all about your neighborhood. Or, if you prefer, just shoot us an Email.

We are excited to see your submissions and will contact the winners by email on November 20th. If your neighborhood isn't on the list, don't worry--more neighborhoods are coming soon...!

Thanks for your input, Portland, on making this site an honest reflection of Portland's neighborhoods!

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November 15, 2005 06:48 - Oregon Humane Society

Above Photo, Eliot Neighborhood Cat

It's Tuesday morning and we are just about a week away from Thanksgiving. Family, food and a three or four day weekend are on the minds of most and I am certainly among those ranks. My family is small-- I do have a significant other (and while on the subject of Thanksgiving--he's an amazing cook!!) and three (yes, three!) dogs-- two Basset Hounds and a Border Collie. The Border Collie has been raised since puppy-hood and the Bassets came to me via a Basset rescue and a "hand-me-down" (sigh), respectively. To say I adore my dogs is an understatement, and like most folks, I very much consider them to be part of my family. I'm not sure if its the time of the year but I've recently heard at least three people talk about going out to "look" for a dog or cat....Most people know that the best place to find a great (and very thankful!) pet is at the Oregon Humane Society (OHS) or from one of the many rescue organizations in the state.

The Oregon Humane Society opened 137 years ago and was one of the first animal welfare organizations in the United States. Their adoption rates are enormously successful- 97 percent for dogs and 74 percent for cats (the national average is 25 percent for dogs and 20 percent for cats). OHS is a community staple and does a great deal for the dogs, cats and families of the Portland area. OHS offers education programs, animal assisted therapy, spay/neuter assistance, service learning, lost and found pet information, pet care and advice and much, much more. Check out their site and read up on educational materials or how to adopt a pet. Make sure to view the available dogs and cats (there's even a "pet cam"!).

November events at OHS:

Nov 19-20 SAT-SUN Santa Paws: Pet Portraits with Santa

From 11am - 3 pm at Gresham, Gateway, Johnson Creek, Raleigh Hills, and Walker Road Fred Meyer Garden Centers. "Santa Paws is your pet's chance to meet Santa, whisper some holiday wishes, and scamper away with a memento of the season. Just $20 gets you and your pet two professional 5x7 portraits and the 35mm negatives of Fluffy or Fido with Santa. Family members are welcome in the photo too. All proceeds benefit the animals at OHS. "

Oregon Humane Society | Email OHS

Map: 1067 NE Columbia Blvd.

Voice (503) 285-7722, fax (503) 285-0838

Have a great Tuesday, Portland!

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November 16, 2005 06:39 - The Portland Vernacular - How to Talk Like a Local

Above Photo, Signs in Pioneer Square

A lot of people end up relocating to Portland from other cities. And, it's a great place to visit. It's no surprise to us...the city is a complete gem. But, if you're gonna move here...you need to know how to talk like a local so you can blend in. Here's a handy guide:

The Portland Vernacular - How to Talk Like a Local

The City of Portland is often referred to by many nicknames:

City of Roses, or The Rose City - Our climate is favorable to roses. We are home to the amazing International Rose Test Garden, and the Peninsula Park Rose Garden, among others.


Bridgetown - we have lots of bridges spanning the Willamette river downtown. From the North, they are the St. John's, Fremont, Broadway, Steel, Burnside, Morrison, Hawthorne, Marquam, Ross Island, and Sellwood bridges.

Puddletown - well...this is fairly obvious. 36+ inches of rain a year makes puddles.

PDX - our airline code, and commonly used nickname.

Stumptown - Back in the day, we used to be a big logging town, and there were many fir stumps left as a result.

P-Town - just another shortened nickname for Portland.

Geography Slang:

No' Po' - refers to North Portland.

The Sunset - Refers to Highway 26, which runs East-West and explains the blinding angle of the sun's rays shining into your eyes as you attempt your commute West back home to Beaverton or Hillsboro.

Lake O' - Lake Oswego, a well-to-do city located Southwest of Portland.

Tigard - is a city located South of Portland, is not pronounced like the name "TIGGER" (a popular tiger character from Winnie the Pooh), but TI'gerd.

The Beav...- Doesn't refer to Wally's brother on that popular vintage TV show, "Leave it to Beaver", but refers to the City of Beaverton, located West of Portland.

The Coov - refers to Vancouver, the city North in Washington. Vancouver is another popular residence for people who commute into the city to work each day.

"The Mountain is Out" - this means it is a clear day and you can see Mount Hood in the distance, a favorite Portland postcard image. Or maybe you'll see Mt. Hood, Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Adams and Mt. St. Helens all at once, if you are lucky enough to have that vantage point!

The Gorge - refers to the Columbia Gorge, a stunning and very popular natural area and favorite weekend getaway for Portland locals.

The Falls - refers to our famous Multnomah Falls located in the Columbia Gorge east of the city.


The Coast - refers to the Oregon coastline West of Portland, of course.

Timberline - is Oregon's wonderful historic ski lodge up on Mt. Hood.

Willamette - Our downtown river is pronounced with the accent in the middle-"wil LAM' ette", and not "WILL'-am-ette.

Couch and Glisan - Two commonly mispronounced streets downtown are "Couch" and "Glisan". Newcomers may wonder why we named a street after a piece of living room furniture. The street names are actually pronounced KOOCH, and GLEE'sen.

Popular Retail Slang:

Freddies - refers to the ever-popular Fred Meyer chain of stores.

Nordies - Refers to Nordstrom, another local shopping fave.

Les Schwab-is only called Les Schwab-but everyone here knows that is where you buy tires to get one of the few remaining "best service" experiences you'll ever have, anywhere. (They will fix your flat tire for free-even if you never bought your tires there!)

Other Common Portland Terms

The MAX - refers to Tri Met's light rail train (Metropolitan Area Express).

Fareless Square - Ride the MAX for free in this geographical area. All MAX trips that begin and end within Fareless Square are free-all day, every day. Fareless Square includes most of downtown Portland (within the boundaries of the Willamette River, NW Irving Street, and the I-405 freeway), as well as MAX stations from the Rose Quarter to Lloyd Center and bus stops along NE Multnomah to 13th Avenue.

The Schnitz - refers to the historic Paramount theater, now known as "The Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall", a grand theatre downtown. (The Schnitzers are a prominent local family.)

OMSI (pronounced AHM'zee), is the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.

Pill Hill - Oregon Health Sciences University is located on "the hill" South of Downtown Portland. The entire area is often referred to as "Pill Hill".

Spendy - refers to the price of something, considered too expensive for the value

Black Box - The black-windowed box-shaped building located at 200 Market Street Downtown.

Big Pink - The tall peachy pink skyscraper building located in Downtown, South of the Pearl. The largest downtown office building at 42 stories high...you can't miss it, as it rather stands out in a crowd.

Ok, locals...what did we miss? Submit more Portland Slang to our list, by clicking the "Comment" button below.

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November 17, 2005 05:47 - Portland Thanksgiving Recipes

G'day P-Town...

I'm counting down the minutes till Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday by far. I love the mayhem of a holiday kitchen...full of pots and pans and flour everywhere...The aroma of a succulent turkey slowly baking, munching cashews and olives until my stomach hurts...Ahhhhhh....So today I wanted to share a few of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes and hope you might be willing to share some of yours (I'm always looking to expand my options-- and my waistline!)

Turkey (my mouth waters as I type this)....The best turkey (in my humble opinion), is simply done up. I love to pick up a free range bird- the bigger the better (leftovers!). New Seasons has a great "savory bread" stuffing mix (you'll find it at the meat counter) but StoveTop will do just fine too (my other favorite). Stuff the turkey full and baste the outside with a butter oil mixture. I like to drape a few chunks of rosemary on top of the bird and then cook until the skin is a light golden color. Baste again and then cover loosely with a foil tent and remove foil about 10 minutes before the bird is done. You will need a meat thermometer (if you don't have one, buy one now as they always seem to sell out). The turkey needs to be 170 degrees -- don't forget to check the stuffing which needs to be at 165 degrees. Let the bird stand for 30 minutes....

Gravy (fingers trembling...stomach growls) While you're waiting for the turkey to cool down, get a big mixing bowl and make use of that turkey juice sitting in the pan around the bird.

What you need:

  • 5 cups turkey stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery salt (I like to use a pinch of cumin, too)
In a medium saucepan, bring the turkey stock to a boil. In a small bowl, dissolve flour in water. Gradually whisk into the turkey stock. Season with salt, pepper, and celery salt (and cumin, if you like). Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes, or until thickened. Voila, extra fine gravy!

I'll share a few more recipes in the next several days...Next on the list: mashed taties, pumpkin pie cake and vegetarian ideas...If you haven't yet, reserve yourself (or purchase) a turkey and soon! Most of the markets I know of are selling out fast...

There are many great places to eat in Portland, and we are fortunate to have many fine chefs in the Rose City. Have you heard of Caprial's Bistro in Westmoreland? Visit their webpage for more delicious recipes, and stop by the restaurant sometime. Or, for something different, try this luscious horseradish encrusted salmon recipe, courtesy of Higgin's restaurant.

We'll start up our very own P-Town Cookbook page soon. So, please send in your favorite winter and holiday recipes. Just click the Comment button, below, or send us an Email.

Have a great Thursday!

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November 18, 2005 06:02 - Multnomah Village Neighborhood

Above Photo, Multnomah Community Event Sign

This week on the website, we are still focused on developing more information about Portland neighborhoods. Recent additions (in progress), include the addition of Multnomah Village in Southwest. Have you discovered Multnomah Village yet? Especially during the holiday season, taking a stroll through this charming community is a nice way to slow down and step back in time. The village is in the center of the community, and offers many unique gift shops, antique stores, restaurants, and other treasures. These are independently owned little shops, so you can find special gifts that you won't find at your average shopping mall. At the heart of the community is the Multnomah Arts Center, a community events center where neighbors gather for arts and crafts, dance, and other fitness.

Coming up, check out Multnomah's "First Fridays" events:

First Fridays in the Village - December 3rd - A Holiday in the Village

"On the First Friday of each month, shops, restaurants, and galleries stay open late (5-8pm) to invite visitors to enjoy the character and ambience of the Village."

  • A Holiday in the Village Multnomah Village - merchants and residents will celebrate "A Holiday in the Village" on Friday, Dec. 3rd. The First Friday event will feature caroling and live music, carriage rides from 5-8pm,food, special exhibits, sales and other festivities.
  • Special Events - In the past year we've hosted artists, authors, entertainers and even a wearable art fabric show.
  • Open Late - Most shops and galleries stay open until 9:00pm.
  • Wine Tasting - Stop by the weekly wine tasting at John's Market from 5:00-7:00pm.
  • Refreshments - Many shops and galleries feature complimentary refreshments and beverages during First Fridays

Be sure to view our photo gallery on the Multnomah page, and please write us if you have additional information you'd like to share about this wonderful Portland neighborhood!

Also, don't forget our weekly contest, Portland. Write in about your neighborhood for a chance to win a $10 Powells gift certificate!

Have a great Friday, Portland!

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November 19, 2005 06:46 - Portland Thanksgiving Recipes #2

Good morning and happy Saturday, PDX....

Today, I am breaking all the rules and sharing a family secret (and I'm not kidding). The secret is: Pumpkin Pie Cake. I promised more recipes and well...here's one you need to try. I made this dish last year for a Thanksgiving potluck and the phone has been ringing off the hook all this week -- they want the recipe for this year's potluck! I'm sharing it with you so you can wow your friends and family (or simply eat it all yourself). Just promise to dole out the recipe sparingly-- it can be your family secret now...

A little history: Pumpkin Pie Cake comes straight to you from...South Dakota. That's right-- land of the flat, flat fields, home of the corn...Midwesterners love Thanksgiving and always make sure to have an array of desserts on hand for pre, post and in-between T-Day snacking...

Whatcha need:

  • 9x13 pan
  • 1 large can of pumpkin (3 cups)
  • 6 eggs (I use organic eggs)
  • 1/8 tsp salt (I like to use Tillamook salted butter)
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 cups milk (one cup evaporated milk and one cup milk to make 2 cups)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • Mix and put into 9x13 cake pan (don't the grease pan)
  • Topping mix: Half box of yellow cake mix and 1/4 cup margarine mixed
  • Sprinkle over top of unbaked mixture
  • Bake 1 hour at 350
  • Top with Miracle Whip when done
Enjoy the rants and raves of your friends and family! Do yourself a favor and try this sweet little punkin cake out...Give 'er a whirl and let me know what you think! More T-Day recipes coming your way in the next few days...

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November 20, 2005 11:03 - This Week's Contest Winner!

Above Photo, Taken in Grant Park 11/19/05

Congratulations to Lee Ann Moldovanyi for winning the weekly contest! Lee Ann wrote about her wonderful Portland neighborhood, Grant Park! Below is Lee Ann's entry. Thanks, Lee Ann, and enjoy your gift certificate to Powell's book store!

Neighborhood Name: Grant Park, Northeast Portland

Submitted by: Lee Ann Moldovanyi

Neighborhood Vibe- Very family-friendly. Grant Park adjoins Grant High School, and has lit tennis courts, a pool, a track, and lots of playground equipment for kids. Excellent bus lines. Most houses, lawns and gardens are very well-maintained, and if you like tree-lined streets, Grant Park is your neighborhood!

Describe any great restaurants, coffee shops, markets or other "hot eats" you would like to see on your neighborhood page:

  • Gustav's for sitting at their bar and eating house-made pretzels and fondue, and drinking from their huge beer selection.
  • Hama Sushi has friendly service, clean and cozy interior, and good prices.
  • It's a toss up between Tuk-Tuk and Sweet Basil for Thai food

Best place for coffee (and why it makes you weak in the knees)

  • Just tried the new Ristretto Roaster's in Beaumont; Grant Park residents usually walk up to Fremont or down to Hollywood for coffee.
Your favorite destination spot (entertainment or other)

  • Trader Joe's!
Describe activities and entertainment that you would like to see on your neighborhood page:

  • Walking through the hills behind 35th and Siskiyou - beautiful views;
  • Exploring the hillside stairwells to take you to the top of the Alameda Ridge.
  • Also, EXCELLENT neighborhood for summertime yard sales!!!

Information on housing (how easy it is to buy or rent homes/apartments)

Some great cottages/bungalows are still for rent in Grant Park. Houses aren't cheap but there are still some good bargains out there, since the housing styles and sizes are rather varied compared to other neighborhoods in Portland.

Miscellaneous

Definitely drive under the trees on Knott Street between 33rd and 42nd in spring (cherry blossoms) and fall (maple leaves)!

Of course, this week, another neighborhood contest begins, so check the blog for more information. Also, be sure to view the Grant Park neighborhood page and enjoy the photo gallery that was just added.

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November 21, 2005 05:53 - Local Portland Charities

This morning I picked up my turkey from my local New Seasons market and later, as I was unloading the car, I was struck by memories of being a child and how much I always looked forward to Thanksgiving. Most every family as their holiday tradition. For my family, we enjoyed a pretty simple meal, football in the afternoon, the inevitable showing of A Christmas Story and later in the evening, a trip to the movies to see whatever blockbuster movie was showing. Its funny how old habits die hard-- Thanksgiving just isn't Thanksgiving without those things you are accustomed to or grew up doing. As a testament to that, I still do the same things today- many years later. For instance, I always pick up black olives and peanuts for snacking, prepare a green bean casserole (reminds me of my grandmother), check the movie listings and hold a house vote on the movie selection (though I do use Fandango to purchase my tickets ahead of time now)...My husband makes the gravy, carves the turkey, the dogs get an afternoon walk, the wish bone gets set on the window sill....These things are "normal" and therefore comforting to me.

The holiday season is a lot of things to a lot of people. To me, its a reminder of how lucky I am to have a great family and a fantastic group of friends to spend the day with. It goes without saying that I am always thankful that I have the means to enjoy a nice meal and that I have a nice, safe and warm home to relax in.

I cannot help but to think of those who are less fortunate than us. I think of the children who may not have food to eat, the homeless, and the families in need. I like to donate to a few key charities and hope that my donations will help to make the holiday more comfortable and perhaps a little closer to "normal" for someone somewhere in Portland who needs a little helping hand.

A few of the local charities I support:

Transition Projects - Transition Projects has been operating since 1969 and focuses on providing long-term shelter, job training, continuing education, substance abuse and mental counseling services and much more. You can help by donating food, clothing or by providing and serving meals

Union Gospel Mission of Portland - Founded by 40 area churches in 1927, the Union Gospel Mission provides meals and addiction recovery services to those in need in Portland. They served 104,986 meals in 2004 and have introduced a hot lunch program in 2005. You can help by volunteering or donating goods and non-perishable foods.

Oregon Food Bank - The hub of a statewide network of 894 hunger-relief agencies, distributing food to 20 food banks across Oregon. "For every $1 you donate,Oregon Food Bank can collect and distribute 6 pounds of food worth more than $7 and address the root causes of hunger through advocacy and public education."

Looking for more charities? Check out the Charity Navigator.

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November 21, 2005 06:31 - Contest WEEK 4 - Calling All Locals!

We have two blog entries today, so be sure to read today's blog entry below on Portland Charities!

I also wanted to get today's Contest Entry up for those of you who are waiting to write in about your neighborhoods. We have upped the ante....write about your neighborhood and if you win, you'll get a $15 gift certificate to Powell's bookstore! Read the contest details, below:

Calling all locals! PortlandNeighborhood.com is looking for the scoop on our Portland neighborhoods and will award the top submissions (one per neighborhood) a $15 gift certificate to Powells! The site is brand new, and we need your help in getting each neighborhood page completed. There's no one who can tell the story better than the people who live there...YOU!

We're looking for a local's take on how each neighborhood stacks up:

  • Vibe (hip, earthy, family-friendly, bike-friendly, overall "feel" of the neighborhood, etc)
  • Best place to eat (and why you love it)
  • Best place for coffee (and why it makes you weak in the knees)
  • Your favorite destination spot (entertainment or other)
  • Great parks and trails
  • Information on housing (how easy it is to buy or rent homes/apartments)
  • Misc....Anything else you want to add to make your submission stand out!

This is WEEK 4 of our contest, and this week we are looking for input on ALL Portland neighborhoods. That's right, the contest is open for you to write in about any Rose City neighborhood.

To submit your review of your neighborhood go to: PortlandNeighborhood's Neighborhood Submissions Page and tell is all about your neighborhood. Or, if you prefer, just shoot us an Email.

We are excited to see your submissions and will contact the winners by email next Sunday. Thanks for your input, Portland, on making this site an honest reflection of Portland's neighborhoods!

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November 22, 2005 06:37 - Portland Holiday Displays

Above Photo, Window Display Multnomah Village

Hey, Portland! Are you looking for some ideas to stir your holiday spirit? I know, it's hard to believe it's already that time of year. It's crept up on me, anyway! Here are a few upcoming events to mark on your calendar. These might help you feel a little more festive:

For a unique twist on your standard holiday tree, check out Alberta Street. "Trade in your FA, LA, LA for a dose of HMMM, HA, AHH! Art on Alberta presents Tannenbaum Madness- A walking tour of whimsical artistic and unique holiday trees created by the artists and businesses of Portland's NE Alberta Street. The street-long tour runs November 25th - December 31st. The event sponsor, Alberta Street's non-profit art association, Art on Alberta is teaming up with the non-profit Oregon Food Bank to help relieve hunger, by providing sites for monetary donations at their Tannenbaum "people's choice" voting stations. The Oregon Food Bank is the hub of a statewide network of more than 894 hunger-relief agencies serving Oregon and Clark County, Washington. For each $1 donated, the food bank is able to collect and distribute $7 worth of food. The Tannenbaum Madness event opens during the "almost last Thursday" art walk, held on Friday, November 25th." Check out www.AlbertaArtsDistrict.com for more information.

Or, for more holiday cheer, head to Northeast Portland to enjoy The Grotto's Festival of Lights from November 25th through December 30th (except Christmas). 60,000 plus people will come to visit the light display, featuring more than a million and a half sparkling lights. For more information, visit their website.

Next, Providence is featuring the Festival of Trees from Dec 2 - 4, 10am - 4pm daily at the Oregon Convention Center. Come see over 100 trees, holiday displays, live entertainment and more. "Join us for the twenty-third annual Providence Festival of Trees at the Oregon Convention Center, December 2-4, 2005. The Festival is Portland's premier holiday event, lighting up the season in style and generating funds to support critically needed health care services offered by Providence Health System, a not-for-profit organization. Visitors can stroll through 65,000 square feet of decorated trees, wreaths and holiday vignettes created by the city's top designers. The Festival also features two specialty shops, holiday-themed displays, and an array of children's activities. Our main stage features continuous live entertainment and attracts people of all ages." For more information, visit their website.

Have a great day, Portland!

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November 23, 2005 05:32 - Portland Thanksgiving Recipe

The holiday countdown has begun! Tick-tock, tick-tock..As promised, here's a "turkey" idea for the vegetarians out there! This dish is tried and true and above all, well loved! I have a few veggies coming over on Thursday and will be fixing it for them. Enjoy!

"Tofurkey" & Stuffing

Tofurkey

  • 5 pounds firm tofu
Stuffing

  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped fine
  • 1 and 1/3 cup celery, diced (4 stalks)
  • 1 cup mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup sage
  • 2 teaspoons marjoram
  • 2 teaspoons thyme
  • 1 teaspoon winter or summer savory
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons celery seed
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 3 cups Pepperidge Farm Herb Stuffing
Basting mixture
  • 1/2 cup toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tablespoons miso
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon vegan mustard of choice

Cooking steps

Mash tofu until the of the lumps are out. Line a 12" colander with wet cheesecloth overlapping the sides of the container. Add the mashed tofu to the cloth covered colander, press down and cover with the overlapping sides and place in a large bowl. Cover the cheesecloth with a pan or plate that fits inside the colander and place a 4-5 pound weight on top. Refrigerate and let sit for two to three hours.

Now, get started on your stuffing. Sauté a mixture of onions, celery and mushrooms in 2 tbsp sesame oil. Next add garlic and the rest of the stuffing ingredients with the exception of the stuffing and mix well. Stir and cook for five minutes. Add herb stuffing and mix well.

Remove tofu from the refrigerator. Remove the top of the cheesecloth and hollow out the tofu to within 1 inch of the sides and bottom, placing the tofu in a bowl. Place the stuffing inside the shell and pack in firmly. Cover with the remaining tofu and pat down tightly. Place the stuffed tofu onto a greased baking sheet with the flat side down. Gently press on the sides of the "turkey" to achieve a more oval shape.

Whip up your basting mixture and baste the tofurkey with half of it. Cover tofurkey with foil, and bake at 400 degrees for about 1 hour. Remove foil, baste with all the remaining mixture except a few tablespoons and return to oven for 1 hour more, or until the tofurkey is golden. Remove from oven and use the remaining basting mix. Serve with the gravy of your choice and of course, 'taties!

Have a great day, Portland...

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November 24, 2005 07:40 - Happy Thanksgiving, Portland!

Happy Thanksgiving! It's a day of eating, drinking, sleeping...eating some more...sleeping...eating...and of course--giving thanks. I am thankful for my family, friends, dogs, home, and the rich life I get to experience by living in Portland, Oregon. In fact, my friend and I enjoy Portland so much, that we created this website only three short months ago, and you--our fellow Portlanders, are responding with positive feedback. As a matter of fact, since September, daily visitors to PortlandNeighborhood.com have increased more than 11,000%! So, thanks Portland, for coming and visiting the website. It is good to know that the time we are spending on it is valuable.

For those of you who don't feel like cooking today, I wanted to share a couple of ideas on local restaurants. www.Portland.Citysearch.com has a list of hassle-free thanksgiving restaurant ideas you might want to check out:

Huber's Restaurant 411 SW 3rd Ave, Portland, OR This venerated downtown den is known for its turkey year-round, so hurry up and make those reservations.

Portland City Grill 111 SW Fifth Ave Ste 30, Portland, OR Reserve a window table and take in the gorgeous view for a spectacular Thanksgiving to remember. Seatings available from 4pm to 11pm.

London Grill 309 SW Broadway, Portland, OR A fabulous four-course meal ($39.50 per person), complete with swanky ambiance will keep the family in high spirits for the holiday.

Heathman Restaurant & Bar 1001 SW Broadway, Portland, OR Dine either in the elegant dining room (prix fixe; noon-5pm) or in the upstairs mezzanine ($41 buffet; noon-8pm).

Three Degrees 1510 SW Harbor Way, Portland, OR River views and a specialized Thanksgiving Day menu will ensure a relaxing yet opulent holiday meal at this waterfront eatery.

Also, I aw an ad in Willamette Week that said that The Cheerful Tortoise sports bar is offering a FREE Thanksgiving meal today, with turkey and all the trimmings from 11am - 6pm.

Finally, for some Thanksgiving fun, check out the Clinton Street Theater's "Thanksgiving Kung Fu Marathon". Whoa! From noon to midnight today, you can drink beer and watch Kung Fu movies! Admission is $5.

Have a great holiday, Portland!

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November 25, 2005 06:24 - Favorite Portland Theaters

Well, believe it or not, I broke my own tradition this year and did not see a Thanksgiving movie at the theater! Instead, I hung out, ate way too many helpings of turkey, tofurkey, taties (and much more), watching some of the funniest zombie movies ever on the Scifi channel. It was great fun but I just have to know: what is the connection between Thanksgiving and zombies (or are there just no real scifi movies geared towards Thanksgiving)? At any rate, nothing could be better than terrible acting, transparent plots and ready-to-pop-full tummies. The food was great, company was fun and fantastic (funtastic?) and I am now at least 10lbs heavier. My kitchen looks like a bomb went off: empty wine bottles, plates, glasses, liquor bottles, food everywhere, you name it...I've got my work cut out for me...

So I'm definitely seeing a movie today to satisfy the flick craving. I've got a few favorites theaters in Portland and wanted to share them with you. Everyone knows about the McMenamins Theater Pubs, right? If not, you are so missing out. The pubs are outfitted with mismatched, older furniture (tables, couches, armchairs, etc), great beer, super tasty pizza and snackies. McMenamins draws a healthy and pretty diverse crowd- make sure to get there at least 15 minutes early. I really like the Mission Pub (downtown) and the Bagdad (SE Portland) the best- they seem to have the best vibe and some of the coolest people. The McMenamins mission has always been to make the pub experience friendly and fun for their patrons and I have to say, it works for me. I love beer, pizza and good ($3=cheap!) movies! "Children, grandparents and the whole of the neighborhood should feel comfortable at a pub, whether it's three stools in a shed or a 38-acre manor. Keeping this in mind, we giddily wrangled with the established bounds of what a pub could be, adding such new twists as microbrewing (beginning in 1985 with the Hillsdale Brewery & Public House), historic preservation (the Cornelius Pass Roadhouse being our original National Register property), theater pubs (The Mission Theater became the first in 1987), wine-making, distilling, gardening, lodging, and golf (all first served up at Edgefield, which opened in 1990), and the staging of national music acts (at the historic Crystal Ballroom, beginning in 1997).

Outside of the McMenamins realm, I also have a love affair with the Laurelhurst Theater and for all the same reasons. The Laurelhurst has typical movie theater seating and very few tables but that doesn't really translate into a negative. I love a good theater experience and the Laurelhurst has that in spades...Friendly employees, good beer and awesome patrons (I loved seeing Dawn of the Dead here for the crowd alone!)-- this place is a keeper. Definitely try it out. "The theater's four screens bring the best of modern cinema, independent art and classic film to Portland's movie lovers. All films are just $3"

Shopping today? Go out and support your local artists and shops-- they work hard and they need your support!

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November 26, 2005 07:40 - Portland Shopping Ideas

It's shopping season! If you joined the throngs of people out at Best Buy, CompUSA, Target, Fred Meyer, and the malls yesterday for some early sales...you are probably already feeling a little burned out from shopping. If you are looking for this season's hottest gift, the X-Box 360, you've probably found it is sold out (but still available on eBay!). However, you don't need to spend over $500 (or get into a bidding war) to find a nice gift in Portland. We've got lots of unique shops located throughout our neighborhoods, plus it's always nice to "support local". Read more about benefits of supporting our local economy, here.

Here are just a couple of shopping ideas, we will share more in the next few weeks.

Hi-iH on Alberta Street. What cool lamps! Artisan, handmade paper lamps make a totally one-of-a-kind unique gift idea.

Powell's Books - in addition to books, offers a lot of unique gifts scattered throughout the store. They always have a great selection of magnets, cards, T-Shirts, Mugs, book ends, and other fun gifts.

Here's an idea--instead of a box of citrus from Florida or California, why not send someone some local, organic produce? Organics to You offers 50% off your first order. www.organicstoyou.org

Give someone you love a night out on the town. How about a gift certificate to a favorite local restaurant or independent theater? There are so many to choose from...just select any (non-chain) restaurant in your favorite neighborhood!

That's all for now, but more Portland shopping ideas are coming soon. Have a great day, Portland!

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November 27, 2005 05:29 - Exercise in Portland

The holidays ring in shopping insanity, eating frenzies and a pile of cocktail and other parties....By the time the holiday season comes to a close (New Years), we've puffed up like Santa Claus himself and are making devout oaths to drop the holiday pounds we've so gleefully put on...So, knowing the inevitable is on the way, lets get a jumpstart and chat about exercise options (personally, I don't have the willpower for Atkins;-).

I like the kind of exercise that reinvigorates and gives me insta-energy...Yoga is a perfect fit for me (pardon the pun)-- one of my favorite yoga spots in the Portland area is Yoga in the Pearl  As the name implies, this hot spot (oops, there I go again) is located in downtown Portland in what is commonly called "The Pearl".  I really like the feel of this place-- its open and airy and the folks who work here are very friendly and engaging.  Very nice shower and primping area to boot...

For a classic blood, sweat and tears workout, I am a fan of doing it the natural way.  I love to hike Forest Park, rain or shine.  It's an absolutely stunning area and in my humble opinion, one of the very best places to get out and completely clear the mind and recharge the soul.  I am amazed that such a large park is quite nearly smack dab in the center of Portland (located just above the boomin' NW 23rd district).  "Forest Park is the largest naturally forested urban park in the United States.  Covering more than 5,000 acres, the park features over 70 miles of recreational trails and is home to 50 species of mammals and birds."  Source:  Friends of Forest Park   If you are one of the many that has never been to Forest Park-- do check it out.  Especially now when we continue to have these shockingly fantastic sunny November days.

Have a great Sunday, Portlanders...

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November 28, 2005 06:53 - More Shopping Ideas

Today we continuing our list of unique Portland holiday shopping ideas. For those of you who are a little bit craftsy...or you know someone who is, check out these options for your gift shopping:

Mimosa Studios - Paint your Own Pottery.  Spend an afternoon painting a one-of-a-kind coffee mug for your favorite sweetie.  Or, how about a personalized family platter?  Use your imagination and create something unique. 

"Mimosa Studios is a "paint your own pottery" studio located in Portland's Alberta Arts District. Mimosa's doors opened in 2001, welcoming everyone, no matter what skill level, to experience the fun in pottery painting. The studio is a place where both kids and adults discover the joy and pride of making something all their own. Ceramics, paint, instruction, and friendly personal attention is provided."

Another "make your own" pottery shop you might want to visit is Amazin' Glazin' on 8128 SE 13th.  They also offer Art Clay Silver crafts and classes.

Handmade Jewelry is always a special gift, or for the favorite beader in your life, put together a selection of sparkly things and special beads so they can create their own wonderful design.  Or, consider purchasing a gift certificate for a "how to" class.  Check out some of our local bead shops:

Dava Bead & Trade has two stores--one in the Irvington area, and one in Hillsdale.  They have a wonderful selection of beads and findings, and also offer classes.

A relative newcomer to Alberta Street, Picasso Beads is a nice neighborhood bead store that offers some vintage beads, pre-made jewelry, and also some classes.

Another favorite neighborhood bead shop is Beads Forever on Hawthorne.

Do you know someone who loves to knit or crochet?  Knitting has seen a resurgence and there are many new knit shops popping up around town, with an offering of luscious yarns, and fun classes.  Drop in and pick something up, or purchase a gift certificate for a class.  Here are a few local yarn stores to check out in your neighborhood:

Knit Purl on 1101 SW Alder.

The Naked Sheep Knit Shop at 2142 N. Killingsworth.

Yarn Garden at 1413 SE Hawthorne

Lint, 1700 N.W. Marshall St

The Knit-Knot Studio, 1238 N.W. Glisan St.

Those are your gift shopping ideas for today, Portland.  More ideas coming soon...

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November 29, 2005 06:12 - Portland Bad Weather Tips

Howdy, P-Town,

The inevitable Portland ice storm is right around the corner...I've learned a few things about bad weather and scary road conditions over the last several years and feel compelled to share.

  • Sigh...I'm never prepared. I always get locked in my house for a few days with hardly any food, no movies to watch and zero board games to pass the time. Even worse, if I lose power, I can't find candles, matches or a flashlight. Solution:  Knowing bad weather is on the way, prepare a small stock of food (don't forget the four-legged ones!), plus a few candy bars- ;-) - and tuck it all away. Put together an 'emergency kit' with necessary supplies, stowing the kit away under the sink or in a closet. Don't forget any prescriptions you might need, as well as a manual can opener.
  • Drive only when you really need to. We Portlanders just don't get enough practice driving on slick, icy roads. Even those folks who have sufficient experience from a "past life" need to be wary-- the roads aren't full of seasoned-bad-weather-drivers...What's worse, the city simply does not have the resources to take care of all the roads (plows, salt, sand, etc). Personally, I would rather grab a pair of cross country skis, snow shoes or spikes and wander out on foot than get in a car and drive. The ice storms out here are just wickedly awful at times!
  • If you have to drive, please keep the following in mind:

    Thoroughly clean ice and snow off all windows, the hood and the trunk before you leave. This is a perfect time to warm up the engine while you prep the vehicle. By the way, an ice scraper is a pretty good $3 investment-- sure extends the life of your drivers license!

    Utilize snow tires, studs and chains if necessary. Les Schwab is my choice for outfitting the car before a trip to Mt. Hood, but that's usually the only occasion where I will don chains...

    This one is important: Drive slowly. Depending on the weight of your vehicle, you will need 3 to 12 times more stopping distance on icy roads than on dry surfaces. Ease off the accelerator when stopping.

    Remember, bridges and overpasses usually freeze first, so slow down when approaching them.

    Be aware of alternate routes to your destination in case of road closures.

    Listen to the radio or check the web for road condition updates.  I really like Katu's Weather Page-- you can even set up a profile so that Katu will send weather alerts to you via email.

That's it for today...have a splendid Tuesday and be careful on the roads!

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November 30, 2005 02:53 - Portland Holiday Shopping Ideas, Continued

For today's holiday gift ideas, we'll focus on the word "indulge".

Moonstruck Chocolate Cafe - 608 SW Alder St.

I don't know anyone who doesn't like chocolate. Here you will find imaginative designs and creative ingredients. Their truffles will melt in your mouth. Pick up a lovely gift box of your own selections, and while you are there, treat yourself to one of their amazing milkshakes.

Pix Patisserie - 3402 SE Division St.

Or, drop by a local's favorite dessert and chocolate restaurant for their house specialty--Chocolate Drenched Drunken Cherries. So bad and yet so good!

Sahagun Chocolate Shop - 10 NW 16th Ave

For the chocolate purist in your life, you must visit this shop. "To name a few ingredients she combines with base Venezuelan chocolate are: Sundance Farm's Hidcote and Grosso lavender, Marion berries from nearby Sauvie Island, Royal Ann cherries from Rickreall, Stumptown's expertly-roasted coffees, orange mint and rose geranium from a treasured private herb patch. She has come to rely on real spices, seasonal herbs and fresh fruit flavors (not flavorings) to create pure tastes, usually limiting flavor ."

Aequis Spa - 419 SW 11th

To treat the other senses, consider a spa gift certificate. Aequis offers amazing massage and facial treatments, in a wonderful zen atmosphere. Many luxurious body and facial treatment options, with gift certificates available. Check their website.

Ruby Violet - 2641 NE Alberta St.

If you really want to splurge on your sweetie, pick up a gift certificate for the "Mandarin Spa Teatment" (their most popular treatment), 2 hrs $130 - A one hour Revitalizing Facial & one hour Massage with complimentary Foot Soak. Ahhh...

Those are your holiday gift shopping ideas for today, Portland. More ideas are coming soon.

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