Stories for June 2017

Thursday, June 29

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Good in the Neighborhood

The 25th Annual Good in the Hood Festival was a huge success with record numbers of people celebrating.

The 25th Annual Good in the Hood went on as planned, despite racist threats. Record numbers of people and enormous community support made this year's festival one for the records.

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All About the Fireworks

Fort Vancouver plans spectacular show

It will be all about the fireworks when people gather on Tuesday, July 4th to celebrate Independence Day at Fort Vancouver.

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Ready for Waterfront Blues

30th annual event jams July 4th weekend

Thousand of blues fans will do their part to fight hunger in Oregon and southwest Washington over the long July 4th holiday weekend at the annual Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival, a major fundraiser for the Oregon Food Bank.

Wednesday, June 28

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Black leaders rally against violence, displacement

Embracing common goals

Leaders from Portland’s black community are rallying around common goals as they address issues of violence in the community, displacement and other issues.

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Adding Insult to Injury

Even after false arrest, Portland man must pay up

All that James Lea wanted was a public apology from the Portland Police Bureau following his unwarranted arrest, during which he was publicly humiliated in a local tabloid.

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Foul Mouthed Board Member

Principals and administrators say behavior intolerable

Portland School Board Director Paul Anthony has come under fire for making vulgar and disparaging statements against his fellow board members and school administrators.

Tuesday, June 27

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Another Troop Surge and More Casualties

America’s Longest War

Yes, that mess is still boiling, despite President Obama’s 2012 pledge to end our involvement in the longest war in U.S. history.

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Former School Manager Hired

An experienced personnel manager who last month resigned as chief human resources officer for Portland Public Schools started work Monday as the new human resources director for Prosper Portland, the former Portland Development Commission.

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A President Not Interested in the Details

Just wants to undo what Obama did

There’s a lot to say about Trump reversing some of the Obama administration’s policies on Cuba. The White House recently announced it was banning individual travel to the island and further restricting what business Americans can do there.

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McCoy Academy Coming Down

The Portland Observer reported on the alternative school’s financial struggles in the face of gentrification last December. Since that time, the nonprofit Oregon Outreach organization that runs the school hasn’t been able to find affordable space for their classrooms and students.

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Training and Connecting People to Employment

Budgets reflect priorities and values

As the chair of Worksystems, the Portland Metro Workforce Development Board, the Trump Administration's new focus on workforce development sounds promising and signals a recognition that improving the skills of American workers is key to advancing and sustaining the greatness of the nation. However, the President's proposed budget plan includes a 40 percent cut in the primary resources used by the public workforce development system to train and connect people to employment.

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The Unfinished Struggle for Equality for All

Where do we go from here

As he prepared to step down as president and chief executive officer of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, it is likely Wade Henderson pondered the same question that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., did 50 years earlier as he sat alone in a secluded rental house in Ocho Rios, Jamaica – the question that would become the title of his final book: Where do we go from here.

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Ethnic Studies Bill Passes

Measure meant to make schools more inclusive

Students and racial-justice groups in the state are among those applauding a bill now on the governor's desk that should make Oregon schools feel more inclusive for students of color.

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Edible Foods to Forage

Participants in an urban foraging workshop discover some of the healthy, edible foods all around us.

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Rapper Best New Artist

At the tender age of 24, Chance the Rapper won the humanitarian award and best new artist honor during the BET Awards on Sunday, winning over fans for both his musical talents and his philanthropic efforts.

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Free Introduction to Ballet

A limited series of free pre-ballet classes for young people ages 6-9 is being offered this summer and again next January by the Portland Ballet.

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In Loving Memory

‘O.D.’ Richardson

Family and friends are mourning Osborne Dewitt “O.D.” Richardson, a long time Portland resident who died June 18, 2017. He was born July 25, 1928.

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Teacher and School Leader Remembered

Lurene Patrah Campbell

Lurene Patrah Campbell, a retired educator and school administrator, is being remembered after she passed away on May 8, 2017.

Friday, June 23

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Unwavering Support for Smith

Leaders say county chair led biased investigation

An esteemed group of African American leaders issued a rebuke to Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury Tuesday saying the findings of wrongdoing in a county-led human resources investigation against County Commissioner Loretta Smith were unsubstantiated and instead were a political and racist attack against Smith, the only black member of the county commission.

Tuesday, June 20

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Pinched by Development

Expansion next door impacts legacy business

A black family in business in Portland for generations has been hit hard by some unintended consequences of gentrification, raising concerns about how the city’s building codes and utility regulations can negatively affect a minority business.

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Portand Jazz Icon Dies after Illness

Grammy Award-winning Portland jazz icon Thara John Memory died at the age of 68 on Saturday evening, according to his attorney.

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Habitat Homes Rise in Cully

Wells Fargo employees have volunteered more than 130 hours so far this year to build 21 affordable homes in Portland’s Cully neighborhood of northeast Portland.

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Pompeii Exhibit Comes to OMSI

See a city frozen in time by catastrophic eruption

A worldwide exhibit examining life in Pompeii both before and after the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D. opens Saturday, June 24 at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.

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Nikki Brown Clown Party

Portland’s favorite brown clown is having a party.

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New Craft Beer Festival

More than 60 craft beverages will be served this weekend at the first annual BrewFest in the Park, scheduled June 23-25 at Overlook Park in north Portland.

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Urban Kids Fishing Derby

A free fishing excursion for youngsters will be held on Saturday, June 24 at Mt. Hood Community College.

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Food, Crafts and Live Music

Three blocks of food, crafts, and live music highlight the Broadway Street Festival in Beaverton.

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Enticing Kids for Summer Reads

Kids of all ages are encouraged to sign up for summer activities at any neighborhood branch of the Multnomah County Library system.

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Just in Time

Warmer temps arrive as pools open

Portland Parks and Recreation opened all of its outdoor pools for summer Tuesday just as the school year ends and warm warmer arrives in the Northwest.

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An Assault on the Least Among Us

We cannot let our neighbors go hungry

With President Trump's budget, Congress has now seen his plans for low income Americans, and Congress must wholly reject his vision in their own upcoming budget.

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Juneteenth Still Resonates in Powerful Ways

It reminds us how far we have yet to go

So why, amid all this progress, does the Juneteenth holiday still resonate so powerfully for so many Americans? Because Juneteenth reminds us how far we have yet to go. Racial inequality remains one of the top issues of our time.

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What Black Parents Must Do This Summer

Activities to make up for the education gap

There is a three year educational gap between black and white students. Many people love to believe it’s due to income, fatherlessness, educational attainment of the parent, and lack of parental involvement. I believe a major reason for the gap is we continue to close schools for the summer as if we are an agrarian economy.

Tuesday, June 13

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Staying Strong

‘Good in the Hood’ festival will go on

Community refuses to buckle from fear and intimidation

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Returning to the Stage

An award winning adult musical with actors and puppets telling stories of racism, homophobia, and homelessness while also taking on issues like finding the purpose of life is returning to a Portland stage.

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Charles Drew Blood Drive

Event critical for saving lives

Eligible donors are encouraged to give at the 12th annual Dr. Charles Drew blood drive Saturday, June 17, from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the Red Cross Portland Blood Donation Center, 3131 N. Vancouver Ave.

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Celebrate Juneteenth!

‘Freedom Day’ in Portland and beyond

Free celebrations for Juneteenth, also called Freedom Day, are held Saturday, June 17 in Portland and Vancouver, and on Monday, June 19 at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland.

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NBA Title with Best Run Ever

Golden State finished the playoffs 16-1 when they beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 129-120

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Life of an Iconic President

The Oregon Historical Society’s current exhibition “High Hopes: The Journey of John F. Kennedy” explores Kennedy’s early life, his road to the presidency, and the changes he effected during his time in office.

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Field Trips Open Minds

Local students from schools across the region have a chance to visit Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) with its hands-on exhibits thanks to a free program sponsored by Google to introduce students in underserved communities to science and math careers.

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PDX Jazz June Concerts

PDX Jazz closes out the month of June with trumpet sensation Ambrose Akinmusire on Saturday, June 17 at McMenamin's Mission Theater, and The Legendary Murray/El'Zabar Duo on Thursday, June 29 at The Old Church.

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On Alberta Street

Now Showing at Guardino

Several artists are featured this month at Guardino Gallery, 2939 N.E. Alberta St.

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Youth and Justice Focus

Town Hall looks for solutions and best practices

While African Americans in Multnomah County make up less than 6 percent of the population, they make up about 22 percent of the jail population. That overrepresentation – while not new – prompted County Commissioner Loretta Smith to bring together local youth, community members, law enforcement officials and black elected county officials from across the United States to discuss solutions and best practices to address racial disparities in Multnomah County's justice system.

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Sign Up for Albina Head Start

Albina Early Head Start and Head Start is hosting three open house events this summer where you can attend and tour the organization’s pre-school learning facilities, meet teachers and home visitors, and sign up for the program.

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A Feminist Perspective on Trumpcare

Rife with problems and gender bias

Although the American Health Care Act (AHCA) of 2017 is rife with problems, one of the most disturbing is its shocking gender bias. But why should we be shocked that the AHCA, or “Trumpcare,” privileges males, as it was crafted by a group of privileged males and is being championed by the most privileged of all, Donald Trump himself?

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Medicaid Essential for Mental Health Services

Cuts would actually increase overall spending

President Trump and Republican Congressional leaders justifiably want to curb the alarming growth in government healthcare spending. Their proposed solution? Cut $880 billion in federal funds from Medicaid over the next 10 years.

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Remembering the Life of John F. Kennedy at 100

His enduring legacy for civil rights

On May 29th, we marked the centenary of President Kennedy’s birth. Whatever history has assigned to him as flaws, shortcomings and misdeeds, he believed our country could do better for all of its citizens, regardless of race, color or creed.

Tuesday, June 6

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Healing from the Trauma

Rev. Jesse Jackson offers a path forward after transit murders

Rev. Jesse Jackson came to Portland on Friday to help the city heal from the May 26 attack on a TriMet light rail train near the Hollywood Transit Station.

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Fighting Racism

Advocates say political climate has emboldened hate

Racially—motivated fatal stabbings on a Max light rail train more than a week ago has raised concerns from a number of community leaders that a new connectivity on the Internet and a new sociopolitical climate has emboldened people with racist views, energized by the election of President Donald Trump.

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Mourned as Martyr and Hero

Mourners remembered one of the men who was fatally stabbed trying to stop an anti-Muslim tirade against two teenage girls on a Portland light-rail train as a modern-day martyr and a hero who never stayed on the sidelines when others were in need.

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Dueling Protests

Activists counter white nationalism rally

Demonstrators representing the white supremacist alt-right movement squared off against a diverse coalition of Portland community groups and justice advocates on Sunday. The opposing rallies took place just 10 days after a racially motivated stabbing attack left two people dead on a MAX light rail train.

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Festival of Cultural Traditions

Five folk artists will perform or demonstrate a variety of cultural traditions, from traditional Kenyan cooking techniques to Estonian folk dance at the PDX Culture Keepers Festival, Saturday, June 11 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Oregon Historical Society, downtown.

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Turn Your Spoils into Soil

Want to begin composting your yard debris and some of your kitchen waste?

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Cully Market Opens for Season

The weekly Cully Farmers Market has made its seasonal return.

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From the Harlem Renaissance

Honoring female playwrights from the Harlem Renaissance, Triangle Productions continues its Brown Paper Bag series of staged readings of anti-lynching plays by black writers from the early part of the last century.

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Capturing the ‘LA Rebellion’

The NW Film Center series on black cinema continues at the Portland Art Museum.

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Fueled by Racism and White Supremacy

The common thread behind transit murders

The reality is that people of color experience racism and harassment every day in Portland. We fear for our children and ourselves because the current political and social climate has emboldened bigots and white supremacists to be more comfortable, public, and aggressive with their hate. We are frustrated and disgusted when folks are surprised that such overt racism and hatred could exist in progressive, Portland, Oregon.

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Whitest and Arguably One of the Most Racist:

The tale of two Portlands

Portland, Oregon, known for its rainy weather, award-winning restaurants, hipsters, and all things Pacific Northwest, hides a very dark secret in plain sight – Portland, Oregon, is the whitest, and arguably, one of the most racist cities in America.

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Same Divisive Ideals Make Us Less Safe

Word choice doesn’t change Trump message

This isn’t some new, miraculously un-Islamophobic Trump. Just because his speechwriters know how to modify his word choice doesn’t change the hateful, violent, dangerous, anti-Muslim message that calls for the destruction of entire communities.