Oregon Museums Making Collections Accessible

Contributed by SAA Host Committee Member, Katrina O’Brien, World of Speed Collection Manager & Archivist

Oregon has a wide array of museums covering everything from Japanese and Jewish history to environment science, gaming and motorsports, local and national art and heritage, and corporate history. While this is only a small snapshot of Oregon’s museums, each of these museums are utilizing artifact and archival collections as part of their museum experience, special programs, and online resources.



mus1Preserving the stories of the Nikkei—Japanese emigrants and their descendants—of the Pacific Northwest, the Center offers both traveling and onsite exhibits, as well as a research library. It also offers onsite and walking tour apps that provide multiple avenues to experience the Center’s archival collection. As part of its Oregon Nikkei Endowment’s Visual History Collection, over 50 recorded video interviews are accessible online through the Densho Digital Archive.






Mus2OHS looks to “explore the people, places, and events that have shaped the history of Oregon and America.” Besides its digital history websites, The Oregon Encyclopedia, Oregon History Project, and Oregon History Wayfinder, its new OHS Digital Collections website opens a wider window into the OHS Research Library’s collections. At the same time, the OHS Museum provides equally thought-provoking, interactive museum exhibits that make history visible and accessible.






mus3The WFC Discovery Museum offers an interactive experience for visitors to be “both educated and entertained as they learn about the importance of forests and trees in our lives, as well as environmental sustainability.” Visitors find exhibits that pique curiosity and encourage active learning about the forests of the Pacific Northwest and the interconnectedness of global forests, along with the Leadership Hall that celebrates contributors in forestry.




mus4Housing one of the largest publicly accessible game and puzzle collections in the world, IMOGAP seeks to “document and celebrate all aspects of gaming culture” with more than 4,000 games to play. While most of the collection are tabletop games, the collection also includes construction, knowledge, electronic, skill games, and more. The museum offers visitors hands-on tables for gaming along with historical and interpretive displays, and shelves featuring select picks from the collection.




mus5Besides supporting the World of Speed motorsports museum’s exhibits and education programs, the Archive offers “points of access while preserving the rich history of motorsports” with the museum’s complete collection catalog, collection highlights, and digital video collection available online. Besides being open to the public, the Archive Room hosts Open Archive Days each month, offering visitors gloved interaction with select items in the archive collection not currently on display.




mus6Wells Fargo has eleven museums throughout the country, including Portland. Besides artifacts specific to the Pacific Northwest, the museum utilizes the Wells Fargo Corporate Archive to produce local museum exhibits with materials that “range from historical images and objects to modern day marketing samples and digital records.” A select group of its archives are also available online including a photography and advertisement collection documenting the company’s origins, development, operations, and impact.





mus7Founded in 1892, PAM is the oldest art museum in the Pacific Northwest with a collection of 42,000 objects reflecting the history of art from ancient times to today, including North America native peoples’ arts, modern and contemporary art, and Asian and American art. PAM’s Crumpacker Family Library, the region’s most comprehensive visual art resource, holds a collection of over 35,000 volumes originated in 1895 and includes current and historical periodicals, and art archives.





OJMCHE’s artifact and archive collections “document the experiences of Oregon Jews from our earliest history through today.” It acquired the holdings of the Jewish Historical Society of Oregon in 1995, including 150 oral history interviews. In 2014, the Oregon Jewish Museum merged with the Oregon Holocaust Resource Center, taking on the care of the center’s records, artifacts, and oral history interviews of Holocaust survivors and liberators.







Parks and Rec in Portland

Contributed by Laura Buchholz.

Laura Buchholz works in Reed College Special Collections & Archives, responsible all things digital, and grew up hiking in the rain in Portland and Oregon.

As you plan your conference schedule, be sure to build in some time outside! Portland has beautiful parks and hiking opportunities to enjoy, whether your ideal outing is a picnic and people watching, a stroll through forested trails, or a heart-pumping hike up a volcanic cinder cone. All of the following are within city limits and accessible by public transit.

Want to know more about a trail to determine if it is a good match for your mobility needs? The Access Trails site lets you know what to expect, beyond simple ADA compliance, for selected trails.

Forest Park

Forest Park, Portland“Forest Park, Portland” by “Robert Tuck”. Licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0. Accessed 18 April 2017. https://www.flickr.com/photos/roberttuck/5943314587/


Over 5000 acres of forested beauty on the hills west of Portland. So many paths to choose from that it can be overwhelming: I recommend hiking a section of the popular Wildwood trail.


Claim to fame: the largest forested natural area within city limits in the U.S.


Good for: forested and shady hikes for all fitness levels, bobcat or coyote sightings (very rare, but possible!), gurgling creeks, views of Mt. Hood.

Laurelhurst Park

laurelhurst_park“IMG_0806a” by “Sam Churchill”. Licensed under CC BY 2.0. Accessed 18 April 2017. https://www.flickr.com/photos/samchurchill/4041353217/


A large city park with established trees, pond, play areas, and dog park. The surrounding neighborhood is beautiful for a long walk or run.


Claim to fame: Site of an old cattle farm, voted most beautiful park in 1911 by the Pacific Coast Parks Association, site of Rose Festival Queen coronations, and first city park to be included on the National Register of Historic Places.


Good for: picnics, people watching, dog watching, feeding the ducks, laying in the shade, outdoor yoga, free summer concerts, exploring the neighborhood front gardens.

Mt Tabor

mt_tabor“Mt. Tabor, November 2007” by “brx0”. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. Accessed 18 April 2017. https://www.flickr.com/photos/atul666/7426269878/in/album-72157603747075527/


Mt. Tabor is a city park on top of a dormant cinder cone, part of the Boring Lava Field*. Hike your way to the top for a good workout, then watch the sunset over two large reservoirs, with Portland in the background. You can also drive to the top, but the park is closed to cars on Wednesdays.


Claim to fame: It’s a volcano!

Good for: picnics, cardio hikes, views of the sunset, skateboarding down a volcano, people watching, free concerts.


*Unfortunately not named according to some kind of a lava field excitement rating, but instead after the nearby town of Boring, Oregon, which is named after William H. Boring.


South Park Blocks

south_park_blocks“North end; South Park Blocks” by “Rosa Say”. Licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. Accessed 19 April 2017. https://www.flickr.com/photos/rosasay/5741912258/


If you’re staying downtown, you’ll want to check out the park blocks, a strip of 12 consecutive city blocks with tall trees, sidewalks, sculptures, and shade. The far southern end of the park blocks, near Portland State University, hosts a large farmers market on Saturdays.


Good for: city walking, sculpture viewing, farmers market browsing, sipping early morning coffee.


Claim to fame: Site of Portland’s first Gay Pride celebration, among many other marches, protests, and celebrations.

Waterfront Park & Eastbank Esplanade


“Tom McCall Waterfront Park” by “Joel Mann”. Licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. Accessed 19 April 2017. https://www.flickr.com/photos/joelmann/452495325/


Waterfront Park and the Eastbank Esplanade hug the Willamette river and are connected by several bridges, making it an excellent option for a sightseeing bike ride loop. The park hosts many major festivals throughout the summer, including the Oregon Brewers Festival during the conference. Bringing kids to the conference? Salmon Street Springs is a favorite for local kids to cool off during the summer.


Good for: running, biking, rollerblading, frolicking in fountains, memorials, admiring the Willamette river, beer drinking.


Claim to fame: Waterfront Park used to be a major traffic artery, and is an early example of freeway removal in U.S. cities.

Washington Park

washington_park.jpg“International Rose Test Garden, Portland OR USA” by “Travel USA”. Licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0. Accessed 19 April 2017. https://www.flickr.com/photos/amymabela/19235307158/


Washington Park encompasses several Portland destinations: the Oregon Zoo, the International Rose Test Garden (peak bloom is June, but there will still be plenty in July!), the Portland Japanese Garden, the Rose Garden Children’s Park (a massive play structure!), the Hoyt Arboretum, the Portland Children’s Museum, and more.


Parking is limited this summer due to construction, so take the MAX to the Washington Park station, and hop on the free shuttle to get to your destination.


Good for: Smelling the roses, burning off energy, waving hi to the hippo, appreciating the wonder that is the Pacific Northwest gardening climate, hiking.


Claim to fame: One of 24 testing sites for the All-America Rose Selections (AARS).

What a Difference Portland Makes!

Contiributor: SAA Host Committee Member Katrina O’Brien, World of Speed Collection Manager


SAA’s 2017 Annual Meeting is coming to Portland and between session meeting, poster events, workshops, and networking, Portland is ready to make you feel at home while offering adventure.

prelim 1

Oregon Convention Center and nearby Max stop; Courtesy of Travel Portland

In and Around the Oregon Convention Center
The Oregon Convention Center will be the center of the archives universe during ARCHIVES 2017: alike/different—and it’s easy to get to! Hop on the MAX blue line (http://trimet.org/) from the Hilton Portland. Walk the five blocks from the DoubleTree. Or, if you’re staying somewhere else, rent a bike from one of the many kiosks around town (https://www.biketownpdx.com/).


Cross the street and stop by Citizen Baker (http://www.citizenbaker.com) for a coffee, warm breakfast, or artisan sandwich. After a day of soaking up conference happenings, grab a beer and rethink “bar food” at Spirit of 77 (http://www.spiritof77bar.com). The Pacific Northwest’s own Burgerville (http://www.burgerville.com/about/) serves up a mean burger, fries, and shake. Forgot some essentials? Lloyd Center mall is just a few blocks away, along with a host of eateries, stores, and a FedEx Kinko’s just down the street. Around the corner, the Moda Center is Portland’s premier sports and concert arena. (Bruno Mars will perform there on July 23 and Neil Diamond’s 50 Year Anniversary World Tour lands there on July 28.)


One of the many neighborhood outdoor eateries in Portland; Courtesy of Travel Portland

The Quadrants
Ask any Portlander where she lives and it goes something like this: “North Portland,” “Outer Southeast,” “Inner Northeast,” “The Pearl,” “Alphabet District” (which make up the Northwest), or “Downtown” (aka the Southwest). The Willamette River divides east and west and Burnside Street divides north and south. Each neighborhood has its own unique charm – and all are worth visiting.

The eastside may be easily cartooned as “Portlandia” (there are plenty of quirky boutique shops, eateries, drinkeries, and personalities in this area), but a walk down Mississippi, Alberta, Vancouver, Broadway, Hawthorne, Belmont, or Foster offers you a unique experience—whether you find yourself in a gluten-free bakery, succulents shop, teahouse, comic book store, or sake bar.


Downtown? It’s where culture moves seamlessly among high rises, clubs, gardens, theaters, and museums. Night or day, there’s an adventure for you. Walk through the Lan Su Chinese Garden; find the smallest park in the world, Mills End Park (rumored to be inhabited by leprechauns); or play vintage video games at Ground Kontrol. Within a few blocks’ radius (all close to the Hilton Portland), there’s the Oregon Historical Society, Portland Art Museum, Central Library, and Pioneer Courthouse Square.


Whether on the eastside (via Eastside Esplanade) or westside (via Tom McCall Waterfront Park), explore the Willamette River running through the city or any of the 500+ food carts throughout Portland (http://www.foodcartsportland.com/). Check out Travel Portland (https://www.travelportland.com) for lots of ideas about what to do and see in each neighborhood.


View of Portland from Pittock Mansion; Courtesy of Travel Portland


Beyond the City

After all the learning and networking events, treat yourself to a getaway outside of the city. Head to the western edge of Portland and make your way to Forrest Park (http://www.forestparkconservancy.org/), the largest urban forested natural area in the country. Just a little farther along is the historic Pittock Mansion (http://pittockmansion.org/), with one of the best panoramic views of Portland.


Trek east on I-84 and make your way to Multnomah Falls. There’s a reason why most locals put it on their to-do list for out-of-state visitors. Drive south into the Willamette Valley to explore a treasure trove of award-winning and hidden-gem wineries and tasting rooms (http://www.oregonwinecountry.org/). Pick a direction and you’ll find a worthy destination, whether Mt. Hood to the east, Astoria to the west, Salem to the south, or Vancouver to the north. Some might call it “the beach,” with towns like Rockaway Beach and Canon Beach but Oregonians call it “The Coast”—and it makes for a wonderful day trip.  Whatever you have in mind, Travel Oregon (http://traveloregon.com/) is a great resource for finding your perfect adventure.


Local Repositories

Portland area archives welcome you!  Portland is full of archives devoted to preserving many aspects of our region’s history.  Many will be open for repository tours during SAA2017 alike/different.  Please enjoy this peek at some local collections!

Local Organizations

This page includes a partial list of archives and heritage organizations in the Portland metro area and throughout Oregon. To learn more about each institution or organization click on the link.

localarchivesArchitectural Heritage Center
Association of Personal Historians
City of Portland Archives & Records Center
Friends of Historic Forest Grove
Genealogical Forum of Oregon
George Fox University/NWYM Archives
GLAPN- Northwest LGBTQ History
Hellenic-American Cultural Center & Museum
Lewis & Clark College Watzek Library
Mazamas Archives & Museum
Metro Records & Information Management Program
Multnomah County Records Management & Archives
Multnomah County Library – John Wilson Special Collections
Northwest History Network
Oregon Black Pioneers
Oregon Encyclopedia
OHSU Historical Collections & Archives
Oregon Historical Society
Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education
Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center
Oregon Shakespeare Festival
Oregon State Archives
Oregon State Library
Oregon State University Archives
Pacific University Archives
Portland Art Museum Library
Portland Police Historical Society
Portland State University Special Collections & University Archives
PSU Architecture, Engineering & Construction Archives
University of Oregon (Portland)
Silverton Country Historical Society
Troutdale Historical Society
Vanport Mosaic
Washington County Heritage Online
Washington County Museum
Western Oregon University Archives
Willamette University Archives and Special Collections
World of Speed Motorsports Museum


Source: Local Organizations

The Wonderful World of Powell’s Books

Contributed by: Cris Paschild

Cris Paschild is the head of special collections and the university archivist at Portland State University Library.  As a local high school student, she cut class on a regular basis to roam the aisles of Powell’s.  

Powell’s Books: “the largest used and new bookstore in the world”


A visit to Portland would not be complete for any book lover without a visit to Powell’s. In a city that has undergone great changes, Powell’s Books remains a constant.  Founded in 1971 by Walter Powell and later purchased by his son, Michael Powell, its flagship store has been at its current location since 1979.   Dubbed Powell’s City of Books, it fills an entire downtown block.  The labyrinth of its color-coded rooms and its three levels, home to 3,500 subject sections, are best navigated with a map, available in print at all entrances.  

The shelves of Powell’s hold almost as many used books as new.  Locals still sweep their home for books to bring to the buying counter, only to find themselves walking out with bags full again, unable to resist picking up another round of titles immediately after.  There are seemingly endless temptations for all, whatever the interest.  The Orange Room hosts rows and rows of cookbooks of every cuisine and for every technique.  The Yellow Room, home to the Sci Fi, Fantasy, Mystery, Horror, Thrillers and Manga sections, may be the best for book cover eye candy, rivaled only by the immediately adjacent Graphic Novel section.  For those looking for an extra special souvenir, the Pearl Room on the third floor is home to the rare book room.  

As online shopping boomed and corporate entities rose to dominance, the always independent Powell’s had to respond accordingly, establishing a retail website.  Nonetheless, as larger bookstore chains like Borders fell, the long-term fate of Powell’s appeared uncertain too.  However, as the market stabilized, so did Powell’s and today the store is busier than ever.  And while it has recently added more gifts and tourist-focused bling to its inventory, books are still its heart and soul.  The space itself has also managed to retain much of its old school Portland feel.  The main aisles may become congested with out of town visitors but quiet spaces for browsing and on-the-spot reading still abound.  

If you find yourself wanting to linger, there’s a coffee shop onsite.  Or you can take a break at one of the nearby restaurants, bars or bakeries.  McMenamins’ Zeus Café, two blocks up Burnside, is a good choice for a relaxed brunch or lunch in a building that holds its own share of Portland history.  

And as July gets closer, be sure to check out Powell’s calendar for visiting authors and other book-related events.   

The Art of the Archive


THURSDAY, JULY 27TH, 6:00-9:00 PM


Scourge Opening Screen.jpg

As a special treat for SAA annual meeting attendees, the Oregon Historical Society will open its doors free of charge on Thursday evening, July 27th.  Guests are invited to tour OHS exhibits and to sit in on a lecture/performance titled The Art of the Archive : The Intersection of Archives and Art by Geoff Wexler, former OHS library director, and Jennifer Strayer, curator and author.   Exhibits will be open from 6:00-9:00 PM and the lecture/performance begins at 7:00.  Light refreshments will be provided.


The Oregon Historical Society is located in the heart of Portland’s Cultural District on the corner of SW Park and SW Madison Streets, across the South Park Blocks from the Portland Art Museum.  If you take the MAX Red or Blue lines, get off at Pioneer Courthouse Square and walk 4 blocks south (uphill) on SW Broadway, then turn right on SW Madison (uphill) and go one block, turning left to the front entrance of OHS.  If you take the MAX Green or Yellow lines, get off on SW 5th Avenue and Madison St. and walk 3 blocks uphill on Madison St., turning left on SW Park to the OHS front entrance.


For OHS information, please contact Ally Scott at Ally.Scott@ohs.org.

For information on the program content, please contact Geoff Wexler at zth1931@gmail.com



ART OF THE ARCHIVE : The intersection of Archives and Art

A lecture/performance by Jennifer Strayer and Geoff Wexler


Archivists and artists may work in very different sorts of professions, but there is a great deal of overlap in what they do.  In fact, many artists are themselves archivists — of a sort — and archivists often become artists.  When art intersects with archives, many innovative and imaginative things may occur.   The lecture will explore many aspects of this issue with a focus on relevance to the archivist.  From the medieval wunderkammer of European nobility to the contemporary artworks of people like Any Warhol and Christian Boltanski, we will look at artists who draw on established archives or actually create archives of their own.  We will see how these artists use materials in ways that may never have been thought of before, challenging conventions of what is suitable to retain and what may actually constitute an archive.


As an adjunct to our lecture, we will present a performance piece developed by former Oregon Historical Society library director Geoff Wexler, based entirely on archival material from the vast repository of OHS collections.  Mr. Wexler will provide live piano music as part of the performance.

The Perks of Staying at the Hilton Downtown

Contributed by: LauraDenise White, Consulting Archivist for the Digital Manuscripts Collection at the Genealogical Forum of Oregon

One of the greatest things about the Portland metro area, especially central downtown, is the accessibility of everything from over a dozen places to get a quick breakfast scone, coffee, or tea before jumping on a bus or Max train at the Portland Transit Mall for your morning commute, to food carts, Powell’s City of Books, countless tucked away brew pubs, three movie theaters (Fox Tower 10, Living Room Theaters, and Pioneer Place, two local farmers markets (one Wednesday, the other on Saturdays), the Oregon Historical Society with the Portland Art Museum across the street, slow and fast sushi joints, and skyscraper rooftop restaurant lounges, not to mention the west side river plaza, all within a seven block radius. (See below for a full list of Portland’s downtown hot spots.)

Regal Fox Tower 10

(Fun fact. Did you know that Portland city blocks are half the size of typical city blocks? This means that in New York, for example, 10 blocks would be a full mile hike, but 10 blocks in downtown Portland equals just a half mile, accomplishable in 10-15 minutes, depending on your walking pace ambitions.)


As the SAA Hosting Committee, we know how intimidating a new and strange city can be, especially if you’re trying to find parking while tentatively navigating the confusion of one-way streets in a foreign downtown metro area. So if you’re trying to decide whether to take advantage of one of the SAA conference block of rooms at the downtown Hilton Hotel, we’re happy to proclaim that Portland is easily the best no-car-needed city you’ll ever find, especially if you’re staying in the heart of downtown.

City Bike

Let’s walk through what a typical day might look like for an SAA Annual Meeting attendee, let’s call her Midge, staying at Portland’s downtown Hilton. Let’s say Midge wakes up Wednesday morning to the beautiful view outside her Hilton hotel window overlooking the pink and orange sky fading gently behind the stark steel blue edges of the majestic Mount Hood as it stands at attention over the sleepy city of Portland with the Willamette’s hushed current reflecting the sky’s colorful ode to the first lights of the new day. Not bad, really. Midge has done quite well for herself it would seem.

Let’s then say that Midge has until 11 o’clock this unrealistically gorgeous morning before her first scheduled SAA conference meeting of the day. Given her overabundance of free time, she finds herself heading out from her downtown Hilton hotel room on SW 6th Avenue (between SW Taylor and SW Salmon) at 8 a.m., and makes her way two blocks west, just past the downtown Portland Transit Mall, to pick up a coffee at City Coffee (corner of SW 4th and SW Salmon). She then continues another four blocks west past the World Trade Center to the waterfront park trail, which she then leisurely follows south for three blocks before turning east again to emerge back onto the now somewhat busier city streets.

Finding herself now on SW Jefferson, she meanders farther east again, aiming for the Wednesday morning farmers’ market (open 10am to 2pm) she read about on the SAA Hosting Committee’s blog. On the way, she notes the ridiculously close and convenient location of the Oregon Historical Society (on the corner of SW Jefferson and SW Park Ave*) where the SAA social scheduled for Thursday evening would be held. After picking up some fruits and a mini packet of Mio’s Delectables at the farmers’ market, Midge walks north along the length of the park blocks, past the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, then the Barlow Artisanal Bar, and Regal Cinemas Fox Tower 10 on the edge of Director Park.

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Let’s say that after her full morning of exploring the blocks around her hotel, Midge takes a right at the northeastern corner of Director Park, and walks east on SW Yamhill for just one more block until she finally finds herself at the Pioneer Courthouse Square Max stop, part of the Portland Transit Mall. She also notes at this point that her hotel room is situated one block south of the eastbound Max stop. If it were any closer, she’d feel downright lazy.

With service every 10 minutes, she remembers she can take either the blue or the red lines for an 11-minute ride to the front door of the Convention Center, or she can take either the green or the yellow lines from across SW 6th Ave on the northeastern side of the Pioneer Square’s block to reach the same front door of the Convention Center in just under 15 minutes. Validating one of her $5 All-Day Trimet passes (these are available in packets at the Visitor Information Center in the middle of Pioneer Courthouse Square, and are good for all buses, trolleys, and Max trains in Portland) at one of the metal machines at the stop, our lovely Midge then hops on the next available train and settles in to enjoy her ride over the Willamette river.

Later that evening, let’s say Midge and a few of her colleagues grab a table for sushi at Shigezo (calling ahead to reserve a table for larger groups is advisable, but not absolutely necessary as a rule) on the west side of SW Salmon and SW Park, after which they stop at Departure Restaurant and Lounge to sip cocktails from the rooftop of The Nines Hotel on SW Morrison and SW 6th while watching the sunset over the West Hills.


Here’s a complete list of hot spots downtown we recommend you take advantage of while staying at the downtown Hilton.


Imperial and Portland Penny Diner

Try the Imperial for a sit-down gourmet brunch, and the Penny Diner next door for a quick lunch sandwich to go. Located at SW Broadway and SW Stark.


Kure Juice Bar

Kure Juice Bar

If you’re looking for a healthy but light breakfast or snack, this is a crazily great place to grab a smoothie or one of their famous acai bowels.


Veggie Grill

Veggie Grill

Located on the corner of SW 5th Ave and SW Taylor, this lunch spot is complete with eclectic salads, bowls, sides, and shares.


Qdoba Mexican Eats


Whether you have an hour to sit and mull over your tacos and burrito bowl, or just a few minutes before the Max train or bus across the river, this is the perfect lunch spot, located on the corner of SW 5th Ave and SW Taylor, just across the street from Veggie Grill.


Pizza Schmizza

Pizza Schmizza

By the slice pizza! Located on SW Taylor just west of SW 5th Ave.


Portland Transit Mall

Located along SW 5th and SW 6th Avenues. The rest of Portland is at your fingertips, literally right outside the downtown Hilton’s front door for heading to any of the SAA Repository Tours in NW or NE Portland, and one block east on SW 5th for any tours in SE Portland, like the Genealogical Forum of Oregon’s Manuscripts Collection, just a 10 minute bus ride on the #4 heading to Division Street.


Barlow Artisanal Bar


Take a journey back to the 1920’s at this glittering corner bar, across the street from the Arlene Schnitzer Hall.


Yard House

Yard House

With over 100 beers to choose from, and just a block and a half from your room at the downtown Hilton.


Jakes Grill

Steak, seafood, wines and beers in an upscale but relaxed atmosphere. Located on the corner of SW 10th Ave and SW Adler Street, just six blocks from the downtown Hilton.


Habibi Restaurant

Family owned Lebanese cuisine, with wonderful outdoor seating. Located on SW Morrison, just west of SW 10th Ave.


Luc Lac Vietnamese Kitchen

Luc Lac

The best Vietnamese in the city, located on SW 2nd Ave just north of SW Taylor Street. This one’s counter service, so it can be a few minutes’ wait, unless you want to order food to-go on the north side of the bar in the middle of the restaurant where you can have a beer or cocktail while you wait.


Sushi Sakura

Nothing’s more fun than a sushi train, great when you need a quick lunch or dinner. Located at SW 6th and SW Washington.



*SW Park Ave is synonymous with SW 8th Ave, and in the same vein of rational thinking, SW Broadway is synonymous with SW 7th Ave

A Taste of Gluten Free Portland

Contributor: Mary Hansen

If you are gluten free, you have come to the right city. There are 5 different dedicated gluten free bakeries in town and that it just the beginning.  Most restaurants either have a dedicated GF menu or indicate how you can modify a dish to make it GF. There is also a refreshing understanding of not just gluten free food needs, but all kinds of food allergies and sensitivities.

Some of the cafés and restaurants listed below are near the Oregon Convention Center, but others are in neighborhoods you might want to explore while you are visiting Portland.


Back to Eden – Great for vegans and they have wonderful doughnuts and vegan sausage & biscuits



New Cascadia Traditional Bakery – Bagels that make you wonder if they are indeed GF and delightful cupcakes



Petunia’s Pies & Pastries – Get a cocktail and a GF sweet treat or maybe something savory



Gluten Free GEM Bakery – Wonderful pastries that you can find in coffee shops and stores all over town



Some of my favorite restaurants in great neighborhoods – fun and filling!


Verde Cocina – multiple locations, GF kitchen, great breakfast, lunch and dinner and happy hour (with a good selection of tequila); locally sourced meat and the best vegetables I have ever eaten outside of my own kitchen



Pastini – multiple locations, knowledgeable staff regarding what can be modified and a phenomenal GF tiramisu



Mississippi Pizza – one location with a dedicated GF oven and amazing toppings and you get to explore Mississippi Ave



Cultured Caveman – Several carts around town as well as a restaurant, grain free, paleo-friendly and wonderful with modifications for those with dietary restrictions.



Jade Bistro & Patisserie – One location but worth the drive/ride to Sellwood; Vietnamese and Thai cuisine with lots of GF options. Start with dessert – try the sesame ball with caramel sauce



Hawthorne Fish House/Corbett Fish House – two locations in town with rice flour based fried fish, GF beers, desserts and even fried cheese curds



Andina – Upscale and definitely a treat with a separate GF menu, happy hour and small plates