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Portland Blog: This Week in Portland, January 29 - February 5, 2011

Hello, Portland and happy February.  With February comes thoughts of Valentine's Day, and whether you love to celebrate romance or consider this only another "Hallmark holiday" there are plenty of wonderful Portland Valentine's Day events and romantic restaurants in Portland that are worthy of checking out.  And if a night out for live music, pinball, or cocktails are more your style, run, don't walk-- to your nearest corner and grab your copy of this week's Willamette Week, where they have neatly categorized every bar in Portland worth visiting. It's a great edition, go get it before it's gone.  Below images are of the romantic and swanky Pearl District bar/restaurant "Candy", which is just oozing romance with clusters of red candles, drippy crystal chandeliers, "fireplaces" on TV, red pleather settees, and Pearl District swank.  Ooh la la...

If you have a Portland Valentine's Day event, be sure to load it up on our Portland Events calendar so I can feature it in the upcoming blog!


Candy - Portland Pearl District

Candy, Downtown Portland in the Pearl District

Candy - Portland Pearl District


Don't forget to visit our Portland clubs pages for even more ideas.


This Week's Top Ten in Portland

1) Pickathon Benefest 2011 - A benefit festival to support arts education at Buckman Elementary and the Portland Schools Foundation, produced by the good folks who bring you Pickathon Indie Roots Music Festival. Benefest is a unique collaboration between Portland venues, musicians, Buckman Elementary, and Pickathon. Jan 28-29, Feb 4 & 12.



2)  Pearl Bakery.  Delicious baked goods, and the smell wafting through the air will certainly lure in passers-by, like it did me.  Strolling past the window last night, I snapped this picture of a baker hard at work.  Yum!  102 NW 9th Ave.


A peek in the window at Pearl Bakery

3) Helium Comedy Club - Catch a comedy show at this great Hawthorne venue. 1510 SE 9th Ave.  This weekend's show is  Marc Maron: Marc Maron "WTF Podcast" 01-26 - 01-29, Maron has been a frequent guest on the Late Show with David Letterman and made 44 appearances on Late Night with Conan O'Brien, more than any other stand-up performer.


4) Live music at McMenamin's White Eagle Saloon - A favorite haunt in the Albina area along the industrial East waterfront.  Live tunes nightly.  In fact, ALL of the McMenamins.  Visit our McMenamins page for more info!

McMenamins White Eagle Saloon


5) LaurelThirst Public House - Speaking of favorite neighborhood hangouts, the LaurelThirst is a notable Kerns neighborhood bar with friendly people and great live music.

6) Portland's vegetarian restaurants.  We've just listed some of the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Portland on our Best Portland Vegetarian Restaurants page.

7) Slabtown Pinball.  Portland's pinball aficionados' will enjoy the 12 pinball machines. 1033 NW 16th Ave on the top of the Pearl.

8) Hall of Records at 3342 SE Belmont St.  - Hall of Records is a boutique vinyl shop, cafe & bar specializing in soul, funk, jazz, latin, hip hop, deep funk and rare groove records. It is a social environment to listen, share and discover new music, with listening stations, open turntables and beer & wine. And oh so Portland...

9) Amnesia Brewing.  A favorite summer haunt due to their patio, with all the great weather it was "summer in January" there last weekend.  People were packed under the tents outside, sipping brewskis and eating sausages off the grill.  For more Portland beer, visit our Portland Breweries page.

10) Another episode of Portlandia!  I think it's funny and can't wait to see what they've got coming next. Here's another Hulu sneek peek.


The Portland Photo of the Week

The Portland Photo of the Week winner this week is Indian Beach at Ecola Park, by Lindsay!  This is actually a great time of the year to head out to the Oregon coast, where you can find this exact scene on the Northern edge of Cannon Beach (only 70 miles from Portland).  This is one of my favorite spots in the world, and if you need some soul soothing scenery and peacefulness, I highly recommend it!  

Indian Beach at Ecola Park by Lindsay


Our Portland Photo of the Week winner gets a gift certificate to a local Portland business of our choosing. Lindsay will receive a $20 gift certificate to one of Portland's favorite coffee shops, Barista (now in both the Pearl District and on NE Alberta Street).  Want to learn more about where to find great Portland coffee?  Visit our Portland Coffee page.

Come and upload your Portland photos to the Photo Gallery for your chance to win each week.  Check back to see if your photo is selected for a spotlight in the weekly Portland blog! 

We've got over 3000 photos of Portland up now.  Here are the current featured photos from the site!  Thanks for sharing your Portland photos.

Find more photos like this on

Featured Portland Events this Week

Here are the featured Portland events this week focusing on events happening this very weekend!  Thanks to everyone for adding all the great Portland events to the community events calendar.  You can add your own Portland events directly to the events calendar, here.  Just click "Add an Event" and fill in the details.

Also, for those of you romantics who want to plan ahead...our Portland Valentine's Day events and ideas page has begun.  If you have a Portland Valentine's Day event you would like to see featured, go ahead and add it to the Portland Events Calendar and drop us a line. Also, if you know of a romantic restaurant in Portland that isn't already on our list, let us know.

Pickathon Benefest 2011

January 28, 2011 to February 12, 2011 – "Mission Theater" A benefit festival to support arts education at Buckman Elementary and the Portland Schools Foundation, produced by the good folks who bring you Pickathon Indie Roots Music Festival. Benefest is a un… Organized by Pickathon | Type: portland benefit

Lakewood Center New Art Exhibit

January 3, 2011 at 6pm to February 21, 2011 at 7pm – Lakewood Center for the Arts, Lake Oswego New art exhibit at the Lakewood Center in Lake Oswego from January 3 to February 21. Organized by Betty Jung | Type: art, exhibit

Safety in Numbers? Images of African American Identity and Community

January 8, 2011 to April 17, 2011 – Portland Art Museum Featuringsome 60 prints, drawings, and photographs exploring the ways in whichisolation, community, and the search for identity affected African Americansduring the 20th century. www.portlandartmuseu… Organized by Portland Art Museum | Type: art, exhibit

Exhibit - Perseverance: Black Pioneers in Early Oregon

January 14, 2011 at 10am to April 3, 2011 at 5pm – Oregon Historical Society Throughout Oregon’s early history, many African Americans came to the territory as slaves and free individuals, despite Black Exclusion Laws.  They worked and lived alongside other pioneers as farmer… Organized by Rachel Butler | Type: exhibit

Ken Davenport's Awesome 80s Prom

January 14, 2011 at 7pm to April 23, 2011 at 9:30pm – Boarding at the Salmon St. Springs. The Awesome 80s Prom is a brand new blast-from-the-past interactive production in the style of "Tony 'n Tina's Wedding" and "Who Stole My Dead Husband?"!  All of your favorite characters are there, f… Organized by Chris Crooker | Type: dinner, theater

Great Northwest Music Tour - Elizabeth Cook

January 20, 2011 at 7pm to January 28, 2011 at 11pm – "Various McMenamins" Great Northwest Music Tour A musical caravan, rolling monthly through our historic properties.In association with opbmusic.orgCheck out our PHOTO GALLERYof past tours. Every month, the Great Northwes… Organized by McMenamins | Type: portland live music

My Mind Is Like An Open Meadow

January 20, 2011 at 8pm to January 30, 2011 at 3pm – the mOuth studio World Premiere from Erin Leddy & Hand2Mouth!   In 2001, Hand2Mouth ensemble member Erin Leddy lived with her grandmother for a year and recorded her memoirs. These tapes form the bones for this s… Organized by Hand2Mouth | Type: theater

Fertile Ground - A Citywide Festival of New Works

January 21, 2011 to January 30, 2011 – various 10 days OF World Premiere PLAYS AND DANCE, STAGED READINGS CLOSE TO 70 Portland-GENERATED ArtS Events of New Work …and growing The glow of creation shines out into the dark, water-kissed evenin… Organized by Fertile Ground | Type: fertile ground

Weld Metal Works by Jill Toberson

January 22, 2011 at 6pm to February 16, 2011 at 4pm – seven virtues Currently showing at seven virtues is the weld metal works of Jill Toberson.  Toberson is a well known artist in the Portland area and has done both custom and commercial metal works all over town.  … Organized by Michael Blair | Type: art, showing

Likeness: Portraiture

January 26, 2011 at 6pm to March 11, 2011 at 5pm – Portland Art Museum The inception of photography in the 1830s brought about radical changes in the look and social uses of portraiture. Dating from the mid-nineteenth century to today, the photographs in Likeness captur… Organized by Portland Art Museum | Type: photography


January 27, 2011 at 7:30pm to January 29, 2011 at 7:30pm – BodyVox Dance Center Don't miss BodyVox-2's January show! BodyVox-2 is comprised of energetic and talented apprentice dancers, and this show features classic BodyVox pieces, as well as new pieces created especially for B… Organized by BodyVox | Type: dance, performance

Percussion Spectacular

January 29, 2011 from 7:30pm to 9:30pm – Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall He just might be the single most unforgettable soloist you see in this or any other season: Colin Currie – the one-of-a-kind percussion wizard – drops into town to perform the Grammy-winning modern m… Organized by Kelly Vanderzanden | Type: classical, concert

Brave Souls & Dreamers

January 29, 2011 from 7:30pm to 9:30pm – Willamette University, Hudson Hall A compelling musical work about the pursuit of peace...cast against the human consequences of war. Organized by Portland Gay Men's Chorus | Type: concert

Malawi 2011 Benefit Concert

January 30, 2011 from 4pm to 6pm – The Old Church Jazz / gospel benefit concert featuring outstanding local artists - pianist Randy Porter and vocalists Rebecca Kilgore and Georgene Rice. Sunday, January 30, 2011 (4-6 PM) at the The Old Church in Po… Organized by Evergreen Presbyterian Church | Type: benefit, concert

History Pub

January 31, 2011 from 7pm to 9pm – McMenamins Kennedy School “The Albina Mural Project: Filling a Void in Portland’s Public Art and History” Presented by Robin Dunitz, Joanne Oleksiak, and PC Peri, co-curators of the Walls of Heritage, Walls of Pride exhibit.… Organized by | Type: lecture

Gardening Class - Intensive Gardening Methods: Growing a Lot in a Little Space

February 1, 2011 from 6:30pm to 8pm – Urban Farm Store Have you heard of SPIN farming? Square foot gardening? Other ways to grow more vegetables on less land than you ever thought possible? Attend this class to become familiar with the highlights of thes… Organized by Independence Gardens | Type: class

Solarize Northwest Basic Workshop

February 2, 2011 from 6:30pm to 8pm – Linnton Community Center Learn how to go solar at home with Solarize Northwest. Attend one of our introductory workshops and we'll explain the benefits of buying in bulk with your neighbors, describe how to participate, and… Organized by Alison Wallisch | Type: workshop

Hip Happening Art & Craft Bazaar

February 5, 2011 from 11am to 5pm – Sellwood Masonic Temple Come peruse over 30 unique local artisans selling eclectic handmade items. Find the perfect one-of-a-kind gift for your Valentine, loved one or yourself! Coffee and sweets! DOOR PRIZES! Face painting… Organized by Hip Happening | Type: art, &,

Greater Vancouver Bridal Show

February 5, 2011 from 11am to 4pm – "Hilton Vancouver Washington" Before You Walk The Aisle, Make Sure You Walk Ours! The 2011 Greater Vancouver Bridal Show will be a one stop shopping trip for the Northwest soon-to-be-Bride and Groom. A one day comprehensive brida… Organized by Luxe Event Productions | Type: bridal show


Looking for something else? We have a ton of other local Portland events -- check 'em out and feel free to add your own!

Lake Oswego Real Estate Report
by Ross Seligman


This month, Portland neighborhood is heading out to the suburbs and surrounding cities of Portland.  Due to reader requests, we've been asked to cover neighborhoods surrounding Portland, like Beaverton, Hillsboro, Vancouver Washington, Tualatin, Tigard, and Lake Oswego.  So, expect to see new spin-of sister sites to coming soon!  We are starting our new series with Lake Oswego.  For those who aren't already living here and are not familiar with this beautiful city, Lake Oswego is a stunning suburban area that is located South of Portland.  Here is Ross's first Lake Oswego area market report:

Are you keeping an eye on Lake Oswego or is it your home?  Check out this link for a monthly updating real estate chart for Lake Oswego.


In my monthly Portland real estate report, I always talk about how each individual neighborhood is a micro-market. If you are looking to buy or sell in a particular neighborhood, the most crucial information that you need to know is what is going on in that neighborhood. In this situation, the overall Portland market report is less important and the national real estate report is just about useless. This posting is a real estate report for the Lake Oswego neighborhood of all homes in all price ranges. Feel free to request particular neighborhoods in which you are interested in buying or selling and I am be happy to do a report, just contact me on this forum or at

If you are looking for homes in Lake Oswego, visit this link where you can search for homes by particular neighborhood: Click Here

The first thing you will notice about individual neighborhoods as compared to the overall Portland reports are that the numbers can be wildly different month to month. Basically, the bigger the pool of data you are working with, the smoother the stats become. As we focus on smaller areas, many different things can happen month to month.

On to the report:

Here is the overall chart of inventory, sold, and pending for Lake Oswego from 10/09 to 12/10:

In December 2010, there were 34 closed sales, 37 pending sales, and 375 homes on the market in Lake Oswego.

One year change from December 2009 to December 2010:

Inventory (how many homes on the market for sale): Down 3.4%
Homes sold: No Change%
Homes pending sale: Up 76.2%


Chart for average price per square footage:

In the past 15 months, the average price per square foot in Lake Oswego has been between $173 and $240/sq. ft. In December 2010, the average price per square foot in Lake Oswego was $195.

One year change from December 2009 to December 2010:

Change in Price Per Square Foot:
December 2009: 233

December 2010: 195

Percentage Change: Down 16.5%

Days on Market, Sold/List Price:

This chart is showing us two things. First, how many days on the market that a home is spending, on average, before being sold. In December 2010, the average time on market for a home in Lake Oswego was 95 days.

The second thing that this chart is showing you is what percentage of the listing price the owners actually are getting when the house is sold.  This is a great indication of the pressure on prices.  In December 2010, sellers in Lake Oswego received, on average, 91% of their original listing price.

More stats for you:

Change from December 2009 to December 2010:

Time on Market: Up 8%
Sold/List price% difference: No Change

Average price for sale vs. average price of sold:
This chart shows us what the average listing was and what the average sale was. In December 2010, the average price of a house on the market in Lake Oswego was $818,000. The average sale was $516,000.

More stats over one year:

Average active price: Down 11.2%
Average sold price:  Down 17.3%

Months of Inventory:

Months of inventory gives a time line of how long it would take for all of the current listings to sell.  Anything above 4 months is considered a buyers market.  This figure is a good indicator of supply and demand.  December 2010 in Lake Oswego was a buyer's market with 11 months of inventory.

By the way, This does NOT mean that it will take 11 months for your home to sell. That figure was, on average, in December 95 days.  Inventory is a figure that means that, if not another home were to come on the market in Lake Oswego from this point forward, in 11 months there would not be another home to sell.  They would all be sold.

Visit my website where you can contact me and search all Portland Metro Area listings from the RMLS:



Best Real Estate Deals in Portland

Every week, Ross shares with us a hand-picked selection of the best real estate deals in Portland.  Whether you are house hunting or not, it is always fun to see the homes that make his list.  Check out the full list of best real estate deals in Portland this week.

9704 SE YUKON ST Portland, OR 97266 - Lents - $129,900

See the listing here:


2645 NE HAMBLET ST Portland, OR 97212 - Alameda - $699,900

See the listing here:

Did you know there are nearly 100 unique Portland neighborhoodsLearn more about these interesting Portland neighborhoods.

Powell's Bookstore Picks

About Powell's Books:  Powell's personifies Portland in so many ways:  first of all, it's an independently owned bookstore.  Portland in general is highly supportive of locally owned businesses and supporting the local economy.  While we don't outwardly shun all big box chain stores, we prefer to do our business at home.  Perhaps more importantly, Powell's Bookstore is simply one of the finest bookstores in the world.  Powell's City of Books takes up an entire city block downtown, and you can get lost for hours exploring the labyrinth of color-coded rooms.  You will probably need a map, the store is so big...  Read more about Powell's Bookstore

We love Powell's!

Portland Book Review of the Day

Portland eBooks

Powell's Author Interviews


That's it for now

We hope you enjoy reading our weekly Portland blog.  Want to see more or less of something?  Let us know!  Once again, thanks for being here and making this Portland website such an asset to the community!  If you love this site as much as we do, tell your friends!  Have a great weekend!  PS -- Want to read back issues of this blog?  Here ya go!

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