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Portland Blog: This Week in Portland September 4 - September 11 2010

Hey Portlandia...Anyone know the origin or designer of this awesome bike rack spotted over at Lloyd Center? If yes, reply to this blog. Inquiring minds wanna know.

So far, September feels a bit autumny if you pretend the scorching near-90 of yesterday didn't actually happen. Nights are cool, mornings are cool and right now, though blue skied and sunny, I feel a slight chill in the air. Its almost sweater weather!  Most Portlanders seem to prefer the cool, wet weather and will admit to missing the rain. I must say that Portland feels most like herself when its overcast, grey and rainy but I'll miss our five-minute summer!  (Yes, this year it did feel unbearably short)

I have much to do on this long weekend: update some Portland neighborhood pages, eat at the luscious Screen Door, harvest my hops (yeah!), ride my moto to Coava Coffee Roasters, boating on the Columbia and mimosas at Bridges cafe. Mmmmm.  I live for three day weekends!

Hope your weekend is loooong and luxurious. Send us pics of what you do and what you see - we'd love to live vicariously through you.  Heck, you might even win something cool. Look below.


The Portland Photo of the Week

This picture was snapped somewhere in downtown Portland and is a pretty good depiction of "Portland". Our favorite photos are candid shots of what it really feels like to live here in this ever-odd and interesting city. Kudos to Earl R Thomas for capturing this Portland moment.

Our weekly Portland photo winner gets a $20 gift certificate to a local Portland business of our choosing. Earl will receive a $20 gift cert to local darling Coava Coffee Roasters.

Portland Monthly calls Coava "the best coffee in Portland - period"!  Coava was also named one of the top ten micro-roasters in America by Imbibe Magazine in the March 2010 issue. Their new cafe is a "tasting room" for their roastery. Prepare yourself to be blown away.  Learn more about Coava Coffee Roasters.

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! 


Featured Portland Events this Week

Here are the featured Portland events this week!  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.

Winderlea Winery Summer Food Cart Series

Summer Sundays at Winderlea Winery - Join forces with creative chefs from some of the best street food. What could be more fun than a visit to our stunning tasting room overlooking some of the oldest vineyards in Oregon for a street cart lunch paired with Winderlea wine.

Sunday Sept 5 - Kevin Sandri of Garden State Carts

All lunches are $20 and include a gourmet cart meal along with a glass of pinot noir rose, chardonnay, or Dundee Hills Vineyards pinor noir. Lunch served from noon - 4pm Sunday.

Learn more about the Winderlea Winery Food Cart Series


The Einstein Exhibit at OMSI

Beginning June 26, OMSI welcomes visitors to Einstein, the most comprehensive presentation ever displayed on the life and theories of the man who many consider the most important figure of the 20th century. Albert Einstein changed the world and our understanding of it: his Special Theory of Relativity paved the way to unleashing atomic energy; his work on the photoelectric effect led directly to the development of vacuum tubes and integrated circuits, and eventually to the computer revolution; and his explanation of Brownian motion created a new understanding of the size and shape of molecules that ultimately helped to unlock the secrets of DNA.

Learn more about the OMSI Einstein Exhibit


Oregon State Fair

From traditional Fair fare to fine wines to the best barbecue this side of — well — anywhere, the Oregon State Fair has more food and beverages than you can shake a corndog at. Oh yeah, don't forget local beers and wines, live music, old fashioned carnival rides and more! 

Learn more about the Oregon State Fair

musicfestNW 2010

MFNW is entering its tenth year as Portland, Oregon's largest and most successful music festival. Willamette Week teams up with music professionals from the local, regional and national music scene to curate a multi-venue festival with bands from indie, hip hop and punk backgrounds. Sept 8-12

View this Portland Event: musicfestNW


Northwest Sunday Parkways

Mark your calendars for Sunday, September 26th 10 am - 3 pm

A 2-way route of city streets open to walk, bike, roll, run, jump, and skip - without having to watch out for cars! The 4.5-mile Northwest Portland Sunday Parkways route will have two loops, connecting SW Stark Street, Old Town Chinatown, Pearl and Northwest neighborhoods. Activities, food, and entertainment will be in Couch and Wallace Parks and along the route.

Learn more about Northwest Sunday Parkways


Portland: Fact or Fiction?

Is Portland Rainy?

Ah, yes. It rains a lot here. Between November and April we normally don't go even one day without rain. Some reports say Portland has rain approximately 155 days per year. Let us clarify though, this is the type of rain we call "The Smattering". It's raining but it's really just wet: this is not a downpour. It's kind of like someone has turned on the faucet and forgot to turn it off all the way; drip, drip, drip--That kind of rain.

Portland Hippies and the other Variation We Call Hipsters

We do seem to have an abundance of hippies and hipsters and I think we're better for it! As some people have joked, Portland might be one of the only places where your suit-sporting CFO does yoga and plays the mandolin on his/her lunch hour! We also have a huge mass of folks who are into urban gardening, raising chickens (in the city), fiercely support their local co-ops, collect rainwater, compost and are hell-bent on recycling everything humanly possible. Is that hippy or is that just smart? You decide. When you move to Portland, it means a relaxed "come as you are" lifestyle that really grows on you.

Green Portland

Not only is it green here year round, but we pretty much embody "eco-friendly". The City of Portland has a program that promotes green building as a standard of development. Our best Portland realtors are certified Eco-Brokers.  Portland ranks at the very top of the nation (is that first or second?) in LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) developments. Not only does Portland believe strongly in sustainability but the city offers incentives to those who do. It's not uncommon to see turn of the (last) century homes with solar panels. Most Portlanders eschew cars wherever possible, preferring to embrace bicycle commuting (we are also, ahem, as of 2007, ranked number one in the nation for bike commuting to work). Yeah, we might be a little green and that definitely ain't bad.

Portland is Artsy

Moving to Portland doesn't mean a lack of culture, including fantastic art. We have dozens of art galleries spread across the city. So many galleries, in fact, that Portlanders find great fun in thinking of new ways to experience them. We've got First Thursday in the Pearl District, Last Thursday in Alberta Arts, art crawls customized to take you here and there (from brewery to gallery and beyond) and much, much more. We celebrate art here--with a vengeance!

Portland is Independent

There is a reason that Portland makes headlines for fire-bombing a newly opened Starbucks and storming the city gates demanding Wal-Mart pack their bags and G-O! There is a huge movement here (or is it simply a way of life?) to embrace the locally owned Portland businesses. Restaurants will proudly tell you that they "bought local" meats and veggies, as will your locally owned and operated groceries. We have organizations that exist to promote the locally owned businesses by educating Portlanders on the benefits of shopping local. Think about it: bolster your own economy, keep jobs local/grow jobs at home, support your community, conserve your hard earned tax dollars--What's not to love about a big city with a small town feel?

Read more on our Moving to Portland page, complete with places to see, locals guides and neighborhood profiles.

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.  We have a zero spammer policy to keep the site valuable and hassle free for our members.  Thanks!

We love the Artists Repertory Theatre

Twitter and Facebook Integration

Now you can share your community content postings directly to Twitter and Facebook.  Click the "Twitter" or "Facebook" icons when you post your Portland event, Portland photos, blogs, etc. and post your content directly to Twitter and Facebook at the same time.  Let us know if you have any questions.

Mt. Tabor Neighborhood Real Estate Report

By Ross Seligman

The Mt. Tabor Neighborhood has beautiful old homes and lovely quiet streets. Named for the extinct volcano of Mt. Tabor park located here, this neighborhood is bordered by Sunnyside, North Tabor, Montavilla, South Tabor and Richmond. See more about Mt. Tabor here by reading the full neighborhood profile.

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 Mt. Tabor 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 Mt. Tabor, visit this link where you can search for homes by particular neighborhood.

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.

Here is the overall chart of inventory, sold, and pending for the Mt. Tabor neighborhood from 05/09 to 07/10:


Over last month, inventory has spiked while closed sales are down.  Pending sales, however, have risen.  In July 2010, there were 10 closed sales, 18 pending, and 73 on the market.  

One year change from July 2009 to July 2010:

Inventory (how many homes on the market): Up 5.8%
Homes sold: Down 64.3%
Homes pending sale: Down 25%

Chart for average price per square footage:



Over the past 15 months in Mt. Tabor, the average price per square foot has been between $116 and $167.  In July 2010, the average price per square foot was $164.

One year change from July 2009 to July 2010:

Change in Price Per Square Foot:
July 2009: 156
July 2010: 164
Percentage Change: Up 5.1%

Days on market and 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 July, the average time on market for a home was 55 days.

The second thing that this chart is showing you is what percentage of the original listing price the owners actually are getting when the house is sold. This is a great indication of the pressure on prices. On average, in July 2010, sellers were receiving 97% of their original listing price.  

Change from July 09 to July 10:

Time on Market: Up 19.6%

Percentage of list price sold: Down 1%

Average price for sale vs. average price of sold:


Read the rest of this article by Portland Realtor and Ecobroker, Ross Seligman.


Best Real Estate Deals in Portland

Every week, Ross shares with us a selection of the best real estate deals in Portland.  Check out the full list of best deals.

Portland Oregon Homes

3814 N LONGVIEW AVE Portland, OR 97227 - Overlook Neighborhood - $499,000

See the listing here:

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


Chits and Chats heard on PortlandNeighborhood

One of the really nice things about Portland is the number of co-housing groups here -- at least five, and more forming. Co-housing is about having your own space (like I have my own apartment) but having an extended family living next door. You join co-housing because you want to be part of a community. Some of the co-housing groups in Portland live on the Eastside and some are on the West-side. Some consist of groups of houses, others are remodeled apartment houses. I live in Daybreak Co-housing in North Portland, and our building is new construction...Co-housing in Portland

We're really thinking of putting down roots for our next move. We are late 30-somethings with a nearly 2 year old and live in Baltimore city right now. Can anyone offer some advice on some great areas...East Coast to West Coast

I am middle aged and thinking of making a major life change, moving alone (with cats and dog) from Massachusetts to a place that eventually I can live without driving. I drive but am sick of the aggression in Boston driving and although I love the freedom, I can foresee a day I would rather not depend on driving...How is Portland for a non-driver?

In about a month my boyfriend and I will be relocating to Portland together. We have been looking at apartments on line but we can't decide if we want to live on the east or west side of the river. East or West?

At TriMet's new Bike & Ride facilities, you can park your bike in a secure, enclosed building with keycard access. You pay just pennies per hour, with no monthly fee. Now open at Sunset Transit Center, and opening later this fall at Beaverton and Gresham Central TCs. TriMet BikenRide


Powell's Bookstore Picks

We love Powells!

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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