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Portland Blog: This Week in Portland May 26 - June 2 2012

Welcome to another weekend- Memorial Day Weekend- and another edition of this all-local Portland blog!  May flew by so fast and it's hard to believe June is just around the corner. My garden is in full bloom and mowing once a week is a necessity - not that I do. I'm starting to notice more bees around and about- full of pollination business- a sight that always makes me happy. I love to see all the wonderful creatures come out in the spring and summer months. Even the garden spiders who can somehow make a huge, intricate web overnight- always somewhere most inconvenient like spanning from the backdoor to the awning. Some mornings I discover half a dozen new webs but not so far this year. Makes me wonder if the spider population is down or if I have remembered incorrectly as to when they are the most prolific.

I've been enjoying the many wonderful photos our members have uploaded as they are out and about this spring. Thanks to our thriving online Portland community, we have amassed an amazing library of Portland photos and invite you to enjoy our fine city through their lens. Our pick of the best Portland photo gets featured in our weekly Portland blog in addition to treating the artist to $20 at a 100% local Portland business. It's awesome- everybody wins.

Find more photos like this on

South Waterfront Storage

New Self Storage Facility in South Waterfront – Now OPEN!

South Waterfront Heated Storage offers a State of the Art Self-Storage facility located in Portland, Oregon. This modern day Self-Storage Facility offers extravagant features including: A digital camera surveillance system, personalized customer access codes and individually alarmed unit doors. Also find multiple covered/heated loading areas, freight elevators and a large quantity of flatbed carts; making your moving experience a breeze! 

Just minutes from John’s Landing, Sellwood and Lake Oswego; South Waterfront Heated Storage offers you a convenient location while providing great customer service. Also find moving and packing supplies – Your one stop shopping center!

Visit or call 503.226.7777 to learn more!

Open 7 days a week! Stop in for a cup of coffee and a tour of this cutting edge facility – Great Move-in Specials Available!

Learn how you can receive up to 50% off your 1st 2 Months Rent!


The Portland Photo of the Week

The Portland Photo of the Week is by local artist, Stephanie Lynch. This dramatic photo is entitled "Stag Close-Up" and was taken nearby Lost Lake up by Mt Hood.

Stag Close-Up

Our Portland Photo of the Week winner gets a $20 gift certificate to a local Portland business of our choosing. This week our winner is treated to Powells Books, the largest indie bookstore in the world! 

Powells Bookstore Portland Oregon - If you're a book lover and you live in Portland Oregon, then Powells Bookstore is no surprise to you because it is a local favorite. Powell's City of Books is one of the most visited spots in town whether you're visiting Portland and looking for popular places to visit, or whether you've lived in Portland your entire life.  they say 80,000 people browse the shelves of Powells each day.   If you're visiting with a group, you can even arrange a tour.  "From humble storefront beginnings in 1971 on a derelict corner of northwest Portland, Oregon, Powell's Books has grown into one of the world's great bookstores, with seven locations in the Portland metropolitan area, and one of the book world's most successful dot-coms (, serving customers worldwide." (

Learn more about the Oregon coast.

Powell's Bookstore Picks

We love Powells!   Portland Book Review of the Day   Portland eBooks   Powell's Author Interviews

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! 



Written by PortlandNeighborhood Guest Writer, Rob Creighton Garrison

I had the best cheesesteak sangwich the other day.


If you haven't had one of these gustatory marvels, I suggest you consult your physician and then ignore his or her cautions and go get one. Your mouth will thank you, or would if it weren't so busy. My recommendation: Steaks Fifth Avenue at Pioneer Courthouse Square. Easily located, just follow the sound of collective “omnomnomz” forming a nimbus around the cart.


While you're gnawing on the first of two (or is that just me?), take a look around. You're downtown, but people are happy, eating lunch (or whatever) and chattering away with friends and workmates. Portlanders are very fortunate in that they have a cool downtown to enjoy. In other cities I've lived in, the word 'downtown' was uttered like an epithet (and sure, there are probably some who don't love Portland's either, but I'm betting they are fewer than elsewhere). Those other places, they should have a Pioneer Courthouse Square.


The nickname for the square is “Portland's living room”, which to me sounds a little mundane; the average living room doesn't feature jugglers, live music of all stripes, impromptu political rallies, flower festivals, charity events, food carts, a fountain, a weather machine, statuary, movie nights with a few hundred of your fellow citizens, handy access to public transport including route maps and tickets, AND, come the season, a Christmas tree taller than your house.


Have a seat at a table or on the steps and all of Portland walks, or dances, or runs, or bikes, or skates by. No kidding, on a weekend you'll feel as if you've sat within six feet of everyone in the city. It's like that Chinese parable about sitting on the side of the road and watching the parade of humanity in its entirety march past. Or is that a Hindu thing? Greek? I don't know, my Google's busted.


You can do all sorts of things at Pioneer Courthouse Square, or you can just sit, munch, sip, and observe. You can still spot mohawks at the square. You can see just how much metal a face can hold without fraying. You can watch a flute-and-drum medley performed with an empty bottle and a skateboard, and once I saw a guy who was pan-handling by blowing into a flute he didn't know how to play (he made a killing from people paying him to sit somewhere else, sort of a musically-challenged remittance man). And everywhere the recursive and reciprocal observing of others watching others. It's a smorgasbord of voyeurism.


You can even sit on yourself. For $100 you can buy a brick with your name on it. That's a bargain for a slice of immortality (Im-mortar-tality?).


Take a look. I'll be watching you.

Read and comment on the original post here. Like this article? Check back weekly for a peek into Rob's world.



Portland Oregon - by photographer Gerry Villani


Featured Portland Events this Week


$5 Everybody, Every Day in May

May 14, 2012 to May 31, 2012  Discovery Museum, Washington Park Come visit the Discovery Museum at the World Forestry Center in Portland's Washington Park  with a discounted admission of only $5 per person for the month of May. it's a deal! Organized by World Forestry Center | Type: discounted,museum, admission



Joseph Beuys

February 4, 2012 at 10am to May 27, 2012 at 5pm –Portland Art Museum One of the most controversial internationally known German avant-garde artists of the postwar years, Beuys (1921-1986) was an influential theorist and teacher for several generations of European artiOrganized by | Type: exhibition




Concordia Art Show

April 24, 2012 to May 31, 2012  Concordia University George R White Library and Learning Center Come join us daily 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. for our annual art show featuring the works of Concordia University students and faculty.  For more information, visit by Concordia University | Type: art, show





April 24, 2012 at 7:30pm to May 27, 2012 at 7:30pm –Artists Repertory Theatre - Alder Stage When it comes to race is justice blind? In this complex, complicated world acknowledging prejudice is an ugly venture into discomfort. In Race, two lawyers (one black, one white) take on a case thatOrganized by Artists Repertory Theatre | Type:performance




"inteREor" at SCRAP's Re:Vision Gallery

May 4, 2012 to June 25, 2012  SCRAP"inteREor" is a wonderfully clever collection of furniture and decor made almost entirely out of reused materials by fabREfab and LeDoux. SCRAP's Re:Vision Gallery features artwork made from a minimuOrganized by Alyssa Kail | Type: gallery, show




The Black Lizard

May 11, 2012 at 8pm to June 2, 2012 at 9:30pm –Imago Theatre Imago’s The Black Lizard will be a verbally sophisticated, physically energetic, and visually sumptuous play—attempting to bring a contemporary fusion of kabuki and melodrama to Portland audiences. TOrganized by Imago Theatre | Type: theatre




Saturday Imbibing Tour

May 26, 2012 from 12pm to 4pm – Portland We begin at Coalition, a small 10 barrel brewery in the inner SE where we taste their handcrafted, highly drinkable beers that reflect traditional brewing techniques and NW innovation. Our next spotOrganized by Brewvana - Portland Brewery Tour | Type:brewery, tour




FUNday Tour

May 27, 2012 from 2pm to 4:30pm – Portland We begin sampling new and usual beer styles at Hair of the Dog, a very small 4 barrel brewery in the inner SE that is known for bottle conditioning beers that improve with age. We then head to WidmerOrganized by Brewvana - Portland Brewery Tour | Type:brewery, tour




Costume Dance Party: Last Thursday on Alberta

May 31, 2012 from 9pm to 11pm – Quaking Grass Wear your favorite duds after walking Alberta Arts for their wild Last Thursday celebration. The brighter and more outrageous, the better! Or, come as you are! Everyone welcome. All Ages. Mingle. DanOrganized by Heather Straube | Type: costume, dance,party., last, thursday., alberta, arts.




Woodstock Farmers Market Opening Day

June 3, 2012 from 9am to 1pm – KeyBank parking lot The popular Woodstock Farmers Market will begin its 2012 season on Sunday, June 3, offering shoppers even more organic food choices, more produce vendors, hot prepared food, a longer market season, aOrganized by Amy | Type: farmers, market




9th Annual Buddhist Festival in the Park: Transforming the Heart

June 2, 2012 from 11am to 4:30pm – Colonel Summers Park Dharma Talk and Panel Discussion on the Theme of Transforming the Heart Ceremony with Blessings for All Beings Activities for Children Tabling by Buddhist Communities Workshops Shared Food (Potluck fOrganized by Heidi | Type: free, festival




Molalla Brew Fest

June 8, 2012 at 5pm to June 9, 2012 at 11:45pm –Downtown Molalla Molalla Brew Fest in conjunction with Molalla's Second Friday Celebration Friday, June 8, 2012 5pm to 12:30 am Saturday, June 9, 2012 - Noon to 12:30 am. Located at corner of Ross St. and Molalla Ave. –Organized by Molalla Brew Fest | Type: brew, fest



Add your own events to our Portland events calendar! Its totally free. If we like it, we'll include it in this weekly Portland blog.

New to the site and want to add your own two cents to the Portland blog?  Please do!  But please remember to keep it real and community focused. Read our terms of use and don't spam the planet with self promoting material or weird stuff as it will just get deleted and you might get banned.  We have a zero spammer policy to keep the site valuable and hassle free for our members.  Thanks!

Tryon Creek State Park

Tryon Creek State Park by local photographer Michael Barton


University Park - A Portland Neighborhood Real Estate Report

By Ross and Leah Seligman

University Park is located in North Portland and is bordered by Cathedral Park, St. Johns, University Park and Linnton neighborhoods.  To learn more about University Park, click here.

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

On to the report:

Here is the overall chart of inventory, sold, and pending for the University Park neighborhood in the last 15 months:

In April 2012, there were 38 closed sales, 53 pending sales, and 113 homes on the market in the University Park Neighborhood.

One year change from April 2011 to April 2012:

Inventory (how many homes on the market for sale): Down 39.6%

Homes sold: Up 31%

Homes pending sale: Up 89.3%


Chart for average price per square footage:

In the past 15 months, the average price per square footage in the University Park neighborhood has been between $101 and $129/sq. ft. In April 2012, the average price per square foot in the University Park neighborhood was $123.


One year change from April 2011 to April 2012:

Change in Price Per Square Foot:

Percentage Change: Down 4.8%

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 April 2012, the average time on market for a home in the University Park neighborhood was 54 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 April 2012, sellers in University Park received, on average, 96% of their original listing price.

More stats for you:

Change from April 2011 to April 2012:

Time on Market: Down 34.9%
Sold/List price % difference: Up 2%

Average price for sale vs. average price of sold:

This chart shows us that the average listing was and what the average sale was. In April 2012, the average price of a house on the market in University Park was $194,000. The average sale was $196,000.

More stats over one year:

Average active price: Down 4%
Average sold price:  Up 2.1%

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.  April 2012 in the University Park neighborhood had 3 months of inventory.

By the way, this does NOT mean that it will take 3 months for your home to sell. That figure was, on average in April, 54 days.  Inventory is a figure that means that, if not another home were to come on the market in University Park from this point forward, in 3 months there would not be another home to sell.  They would all be sold.


In my monthly Portland real estate report, I always talk about how each individual neighborhood is a micro-market. 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.


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 University Park 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

Visit our website where you can contact us and search all Portland Metro Area real estate and homes for sale from the RMLS, including school and neighborhood reports at


Best Deals in Portland this Week

 Each week Ross and Leah share some great Portland real estate listings for us to drool over.  Enjoy!
7326 SW BRIER PL Portland, OR 97219 - Corbett/Lair Hill - $695,000

Click the image to see the full listing

3632 SE HENRY ST Portland, OR 97202 - Eastmoreland - $499,000

Click the image to see the full listing


7230 N FOSS AVE Portland, OR 97203 - University Park - $299,000

Click the image to see the full listing



Visit our website where you can contact us and search all Portland metro area homes for sale and real estate from the RMLS, including neighborhood and school information:

Did you know there are nearly 100 unique Portland neighborhoods?  Read and learn all about these interesting urban communities.


Stub Stewart State Park

Stub Stewart State Park by local photographer Lindsay


That's it for now

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