PortlandSports January 25, 2021

Why I Love Portland!

The Mountain Home Canoe Club

Mountain Home Canoe Club (MHCC) was formed in 1993 as a co-ed dragon boat racing team with a primary focus of competing in the Portland Rose Festival Dragon Boat Races. The team was comprised of members of the Kaiser Permanente dragon boat team of 1992 and various friends and associates. At the ALCAN races in Vancouver, BC, in June of 1993, the team was required to register a team name. On the spot, Adam Kramer, team founder and coach, chose Mountain Home, the name of the water district where he was living near Scholls, Oregon. Under Adam’s leadership, coaching, and management, the team trained hard and competed successfully that first year in dragon boat races in Portland, Iowa, British Columbia, and Alberta. Encouraged by success and inspired by the competition, MHCC members were determined to be competitive at the highest levels of racing and agreed to train year round, on and off the water.

While concentrating on dragon boat racing, MHCC members also enjoyed other paddling sports including kayak racing, marathon canoe racing, and outrigger canoe in six-man Hawaiian style canoes. In 1994, MHCC had obtained their first OC6 and began a transition from dragon boat to outrigger. By 1996, the primary focus of Mountain Home had shifted to outrigger canoe training and racing. In fact, during the 1997 season, MHCC practiced only a handful of times before taking First Place in the Portland Rose Festival Dragon Boat Races. After the success in the Portland Rose Festival, interest in dragon boat waned and MHCC began to concentrate fully on developing highly competitive outrigger racing teams. By this time, MHCC had developed a close relationship with several competitive Canadian paddlers, most notably Peter Heaver and Calvin Chow, who had been providing a lot of support in training. In 1999, Peter moved to Portland and became the head coach for Mountain Home.

Real Estate June 22, 2020

Updated Housing forecast for 2020.

Here’s the updated 2020 Housing forecast from realtor.com.  In mid-December realtor.com released the annual 2020 housing forecast. Fast forward five months and it’s no surprise the numbers have changed. “We got derailed on the forecast as we expected,” realtor.com Senior Economist George Raitu explains.

The updated data forecasts shows “sales of homes to fall 15 percent in 2020 with prices flattening.” That’s compared to the original forecast of a slight home sales decline of 1.8 percent. Single family housing starts were expected to be up 10 percent for 2020, that number has dropped to a decline of 11 percent.

Raitu sums up the market. “Uncertainty is the key word for pretty much every aspect of the market for the rest of the year.” Key market fundamentals include baby boomers not selling, Millennials wanting to buy, affordable secondary markets and an unstable global economy.  The upcoming Presidential election also plays into the uncertainty factor.

Realtor.com does forecast a short-term bump in sales for late summer and early fall due to pent up buyer demand, fear of the coronavirus diminishing and low mortgage rates. Another driver for a stronger third quarter is Millennials with families want to settle in new homes before the school year begins. Don’t expect an increase in sales to last into the fourth quarter though.

Restaurants April 20, 2020

Why I love Portland! A Great Take-Out option during the COVID-19!!

Located in the historic St. Johns area of Portland, Chop offers an innovative spin on some classic menu items, as well as a bevy of new items that’ll have you wanting to try the whole menu. Specializing in breakfast and lunch items, Chop is open every day except Tuesday from 8am – 7pm.

Dining is available, or feel free to call in for takeout orders.

Take Out Food

St. Johns Restaurant

BarsPortlandRestaurants April 15, 2020

Why I Love Portland! Mc Cormick & Schmicks

Our History

Bill McCormick and Doug Schmick teamed up in the 1970s before going on to establish more than 80 restaurants throughout the country. Over time, McCormick & Schmick’s became the nation’s premier family of seafood restaurants. The combination of an open imagination and a respect for tradition is what makes McCormick & Schmick’s the classic and successful business that it is today. For more information about our history, .

Our Food

Each McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant’s menu is printed twice daily, featuring the signature “Fresh List” highlighting an impressive number of fresh seafood varieties, in addition to aged steaks, poultry, entrée salads and pasta. McCormick & Schmick’s commitment to local freshness is apparent in the seasonally inspired dishes and regionally inspired preparations offered.

Our Culture

Since our very first restaurant opened, McCormick & Schmick’s has focused on a true spirit of hospitality, where every guest is treated like family. The McCormick & Schmick’s “people-focus” extends to our employees as well, whom we treat with the utmost respect and for whom we provide growth opportunities at many levels. McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurants also believe in giving back to the communities in which we are a part by supporting local programs and organizations.Seafood & Steaks

Uncategorized April 15, 2020

Why I love Portland. Just in time for Summer!

https://bcjohnson.withwre.com/listing/108555460

Arts and CultureSymphonyUncategorized January 7, 2020

Why I love Portland! The Oregon Symphony

Adventurous programming. Inspiring collaborations. Bridging art forms. Connecting lives. Sparking conversation. Every day, and with each exhilarating performance, the Oregon Symphony is moving music forward.

PortlandSports December 31, 2019

Why I love Portland! Portland Rock Gym

Specialties
Serving the Portland climbing community for over 30 years, Portland Rock Gym offers rock climbing, bouldering, yoga, fitness, and a rock climbing guide service. Now with over 25,000 sq.ft. of climbing terrain including auto-belays, top-ropes, and leading you’ll have plenty to keep you occupied and in shape! Quality instruction and fun events are a staple at the gym, for beginners and experts alike. For youth, PRG offers birthday parties, after school programs, the competition team, and week-long indoor/outdoor camps during school breaks. All these activities will challenge youth with high-rope elements, zip-lines, king swings, and cargo nets! Let our staff lead your group or business in our comprehensive and engaging Team Building Events and Group Belay Events. New in 2015 was the addition of the Wy’east Yoga & Fitness Studio. Instructors maintain the highest level of personal practice, study, and integrity in and out of the studio. They are committed to excellence and are attentive to the developmental needs of the Portland Rock Gym community. Facilities include showers, lockers, Wy’east Yoga Studio, Prasad East cafe, as well as weight and cardio equipment. See you at the top!

History
Established in 1988.

Founded in 1988, the Portland Rock Gym is one of the first climbing gyms in the world. With bouldering, top-rope, and overhanging lead walls, PRG offers a realistic climbing experience for beginning and experienced climbers alike. The Portland Rock Gym offers a world-class indoor climbing experience. You’ll find over 180 boulder problems throughout the gym up to 100 routes at any given time. The variety of course setters and 2-month rotation guarantee a positive experience. In addition, you’ll find a weight room, cardio machines, yoga & fitness classes in Wy’east Studio, showers and AC to round out your workout.

Meet the Business Owner
Business owner information
Photo of Gary R.
Gary R.

Business Owner

Gary has been climbing throughout the West Coast for almost 40 years. On a trip to England in 1987, he got the idea of building an indoor climbing gym. While there, Rall heard about a community center that had a climbing wall where people kept in shape during the winter months when the weather was bad. He thought of Portland’s rainy weather and decided to build the Portland Rock Gym. It turned out to be the second gym in the country, and the first to use modular holds. His wife, Julie, actually came up with the phrase “rock gym” as they named the business.

Arts and Culture April 17, 2019

Why I love Portland! International Youth Silent Film Festival

Arts and CulturePortlandRestaurants April 1, 2019

Why I love Portland! Living Room Theaters

https://pdx.livingroomtheaters.com/about_us.cfm

Visionary. Extraordinary. Earth-friendly.
Living Room® Theaters is a visionary new concept created by longtime filmmakers. We set out to reinvent the way films are viewed and distributed. And to change everything we didn’t like about conventional and art house movie theaters – from the film selection to the lobby ambiance, food, seating and service.

Welcome to the new evolution of cinema – Living Room® Theaters — the sophisticated yet superbly comfortable environment that combines a European style café and lounge with a relaxing place to see wonderful movies. Cinema has come to its senses.

In fact, Living Room® Theaters is cinema for your senses – a feast of sights, sounds, flavors, textures and creativity. See movies the way they’re meant to be viewed. Enjoy exclusive new releases and the most-talked about independent films that critics and audiences love – without waiting months for the movies to reach Portland.

Your group can also reserve a theater for a private party or special event. Or use our technology for meetings, lectures and innovative presentations.

Independent. Award-winning. Unlimited.
Living Room® Theaters is a celebration of great, independent films and filmmakers. We’re deeply committed to the vibrant, growing local film community. We also chose to launch in Portland because of active film lovers like you – Portland has one of the highest per capita film going audiences of any city in the U.S.

Our proprietary digitizing technology enables even first-time directors and producers to distribute their independent films – without the prohibitively high costs of making and shipping traditional celluloid prints. We are able to showcase acclaimed films and independent filmmakers, from local to international, as well as groundbreaking movies that otherwise might be screened only at festivals. We also premiere many films that have not yet had distribution in the U.S.

Our digital technology also expands the functions our theaters can offer. Films, television broadcasts, music, dedicated programs and other materials can easily be programmed and shown in multiple Living Room® Theaters locations.

Earth friendly. Energy conscious. Sustainable.
Launched in December 2006, our Portland, Oregon location is the first all-digital and only-digital theater in the country. This new concept offers significant environmental advantages. By eliminating celluloid prints and traditional distribution, we eliminate the use of chemicals like silver nitrate and reduce non-biodegradable materials and pollution. Digital projection is also more energy-efficient, from transportation to projection.

Environmental. Inspired. Inviting.
Located in the heart of the West End just south of Burnside from Powell’s, across from the new Ace Hotel, Living Room® Theaters is designed to be “a jewel box” on Portland’s cultural and entertainment scene.

We used natural materials and light to transform our funky historic building into a stellar space. A dramatic sculptural cedar wall invites you in via a “curtain” that flows from the exterior to the interior. The stunning fireplace, soaring windows and “make yourself at home” arrangement of tables, chairs and sofas in the lounge invite you to linger and connect.

© 2019 Living Room® Theaters – Security and Privacy Policy

ArchitectureArts and CultureBarsHotel/Bed & BreakfastPortlandReal Estate February 11, 2019

Why I love Portland! St. Johns Neighborhood

St. Johns is located in North Portland and is bordered by Linnton, Cathedral Park, University Park, Portsmouth and Kenton neighborhoods.


View Larger Map


St. Johns Features

St. Johns feels very detached from Portland proper and has a distinct small town feel to it. The post office, coffee shops, breakfast places, restaurants, movie theaters, grocery stores, and several parks, are all within walking distance for residents who live close to the downtown strip.

St. Johns has a rich and interesting history. An 1843 pioneer settler of Linnton, James John, moved across the river and started St. Johns in about 1865. St. Johns became part of Portland in1915, two years before Linnton joined the growing city. There used to be a lot of streetcars in St Johns and many interesting old houses & buildings still remain.

It’s not possible to discuss St. Johns without singing the praises of the St. Johns bridge. The bridge is stunning and the focal point of many famous photos. It is often compared to the Golden Gate Bridge and mistakenly reported as being designed by the same person. The builder of the St Johns bridge was John Steinman who was rumored to be a rival to the builder of the Golden Gate Bridge.

One virtue of the bridge that is often overlooked by much of Portland, is a 12 minute commute to downtown Portland and15-20minutes to Beaverton or Hillsboro. Highway 30, the road connecting the other side of the bridge to downtown Portland suffers very little traffic during the 8-5 or 9-6 commute hours (although, anecdotally, it’s busier during earlier hours 5-7 am and 2:30 – 4:30). Germantown road to Skyline or Cornelius pass dissimilarly light traffic during banker’s hours commute.

Neighborhood Vibe

St. John’s is described by locals as “extremely friendly“, “A town within a city…” “There seems to be quite an underground of artists and fellow travelers in these parts.”  Some parts of St Johns feel new and others gritty and perhaps not so safe, especially at night.

 


St. Johns Real Estate

St. John’s features all styles of Portland architecture, from ranches and cape cods, to the occasional Victorian home. St. Johns is an older Portland community.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in this Portland neighborhood, visit our Portland Real Estate Page for more information, or visit our Portland Real Estate Map to search the RMLS for neighborhood homes for sale.

 


St Johns Community Resources

Zip Code 97203

St. Johns On-line Community

St. John Neighborhood Information

Local Crime Stats

Census

St. Johns Farmers Market

St. Johns Schools:

Elementary school: James John Elementary School

Middle school: George Middle School

High school: Roosevelt High School

Portland Public School Boundaries

Neighborhood Demographics and Census Statistics

 

Local Google Map

Neighborhood Boundary Map


Parks

St. John’s is home to beautiful Cathedral Park. The aptly named park, directly below the bridge is home not only to the “cathedral-like” arches of the bridge piers, but a boat ramp, a dog off-leash area, and a hiking trail. The park itself was created out of what was essentially wasteland under the bridge in the early 70s by St. Johns honorary mayor Howard Galbraith (per Portland Parks and recreation). There is a water pollution control lab that has a charming natural habitat wetland sanctuary where you may spot nutria and red winged blackbirds. The yearly St Johns blues jazz festival is also held in Cathedral Park.

Forest Park has a trailhead on the west side of the St. Johns Bridge. You can walk across the bridge and be right in the forest. Forest Park is the largest old-growth urban forest in the United States. This trail area of the park features the most wildlife–you may spot some deer and other animals foraging quietly in the forest.

The Smith & Bybee Lakes wildlife sanctuary is tucked away in St.. Johns, also. It’s a protected wetland scenic area that is unique and beautiful–and a bird watchers delight! The Portland Parks website indicates that most visitors to the lakes can find beaver, river otter, black-tailed deer, osprey, bald eagles, and one of the largest remaining populations of Western painted turtles in Oregon. The Columbia Slough has boat ramps where people take canoes and rafts for a relaxing ride. There is public art along the restored trail.

Pier Park is another great park that is like a little forest, and sometimes hosts classical music performances.


St. Johns Restaurants & Businesses

Originally settled independently of Portland, St. Johns used to be its own city complete with City Hall.  Now that building houses the police station, and the two towns are one.  Or are they?

Of course legally the two cities are one.  And then there’s that Kum Ba Yah can’t-we-all-just-get-along way, sure.  But walking the streets, it doesn’t take long to get the vibe that, “Toto, we’re not in Portland anymore.”

Somewhere between the architecture that’s frozen at different moments in Main Street Americana and the fiercely, did I mention fiercely, proud neighbors and proprietors, is a sense of community that is different, special, even self-reflective. It’s as if the community pastime consists of pinching oneself at the opportunity to live and work in St. Johns.

Of course, some of the St. Johns’ satisfaction has to do with age. No rocket science here. Plain and simple, history equals roots equals pride. And in St. Johns, you can’t throw a rock and not hit something historic.  Some of the oldest buildings in all of Portland are in St. Johns and some of the oldest businesses. The bike shop clocks in as the very first, established in 1925 and now in its third generation.  The bakery is also in its third generation.  The hardware store was the oldest in the land before hard times, but it’s making a comeback.  You can chomp on pizza at a gas station that goes back to the‘30s, and the soda fountain was flowing in the ‘50s.

Most of the proprietors live nearby, and their sense of community weighs in far stronger than any feelings of competition.  When you talk to shop owners in St. Johns, they can’t wait to recommend several other shops on the block.  They’ll tell you who owns them, how long they’ve been around, and the quality work they’re up to.

Taking their lead, here’s what we found.

Big Kahuna’s Barbeque

Big Kahuna's Barbeque, St. Johns So this place isn’t the oldest in the’ hood, but Gary Herrera, owner and Big Kahuna, does it the old fashioned way.  He smokes and barbeques all his own meat right there on the premises.  This guy with the huge, welcoming smile is so serious about barbeque that he holds classes and even barbeque competitions.  The next one will coincide with the St. Johns parade that is the annual kick off to the Rose Festival season.

Recently Gary’s won best caterer of the year, and the restaurant is listed as one of Portland’s Top100.  He’s the champion of several competitions across the States.  And with dishes like Kalua Pig Plate and Smoked Beef Plate with some Mango Cole Slaw, the Big Kahuna seems to have found the winning recipe for making a place in St.Johns’ history.

8221 N. Lombard Street

Big Kahunas Barbeque and Catering

Portland, OR 97203

Call in Orders:  (503)522-4012

Catering:  (503)310-9480

www.bigkahunasbbq.com

Pattie’s Homeplate Café & Fountain

Pattie's Homeplate Cafe and Fountain, St. Johns The namesake proprietor grew up in St. Johns and used to spend her typical 1950’s Saturday sitting at the fountain here slurping Orange Julius.  Two doors down, the owner of the fencing center says he’s seen a photograph of Pattie when she was a kid sitting at the tables and chairs outside – the exact same tables and chairs that are there today.

All grown up, Pattie bought the place with her husband, Gene, and expanded the deli into a café.  They serve exactly what you would expect they would in a place that still holds sock hops every first and third Saturday of the month.

Pattie’s Homeplate Café & Fountain

8501 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 289-7285

Signal Station Pizza

Signal Station Pizza, St. Johns The antique gas pumps are still out front.  The service bay door into the garage still rolls up.  And inside, what else?  Pizza!  You can enjoy the warmer months inside the “garage” or at tables set up just outside.  And word on the street is they’ve got good rep.

Serving pizza by the slice or whole pie, Signal Station also makes sandwiches and salads and scoops up Blue Bunny ice cream.

Signal Station Pizza

Hours:  Tues-Thurs 11:30-8:30, Fri-Sat 11:30-9:00, Sun 4:00-8:00

8302 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 286-2257

Blue Moon Camera and Machine

Blue Moon Camera, St. Johns In the market for that latest digital SLR? Or maybe you’re just in the mood to talk mega pixels?  Not in St.. Johns you’re not and certainly not at Blue Moon.  Purists down to their last shutter, each and every Blue Moon staff member is a photographer first, clerk second, and they do traditional film the traditional way.

On the equipment sales’ side of the business, they carry the best vintage: ‘60s, ‘70s, and early‘80s.  And processing Blue Moon style means high quality optical printing that requires hands-on, one negative at a time attention, focusing optical light through each individual frame.

In addition to keeping tradition, Blue Moon has also made one in these parts.  As they see literally every exposure their customers submit, the staff sets aside a few favorites for an annual customer show that has become so popular that this year there’s an encore presentation.

Blue Moon Camera and Machine

8417 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 978-0333

Greg’s

Greg's, St. Johns

The name doesn’t give away much, but a simple title would have its hands full trying to nail down this store’s contents.  Instead of slinging the shopping “E” word – “eclectic” – manager Michael Talley refers to the establishment as an “all inclusive gift shop.”  Cards to fountains, the inventory will soon also boast a nursery with garden supplies and garden art.

Greg’s

8218 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 289-7510

www.gregspdx.com

The Man’s Shop

The Man's Shop, St. Johns

“Meet us and be well dressed,” was the slogan started 67 years ago by Ben and Jean Leveton.  Their sons, Bob and Jerry, have run the operation for many years now, and The Man’s Shop remains the place for smart attire, as well as casual, in the neighborhood that made them who they are.

Though the family has always had a St. Johns presence, once upon a time they also owned a second location in Jantzen each.  There they won the “Friendliest Store in the Shopping Center” so many years in a row that the trophy was finally retired with their name on it.  What bearing does that have on their business today?  According to the brothers, they learned what it meant to run a truly friendly shop from St. Johns– and that’s right where they continue to do so.

Suits, shirts, ties, tuxes, and even tee’s and jeans, The Man’s Shop has a tremendous inventory in addition to their share of smiles.

The Man’s Shop

8511 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 286-3514

www.gregspdx.com

Tulip Pastry Shop

Tulip Pastry Shop, St. Johns

Making St. Johns smell good since 1950, Tulip Pastry Shop still bakes every last morsel like they did 57 years ago –from scratch.  In the business for so long, Melodie Presler of its third generation can’t smell any of her family’s sweeter concoctions anymore, but it’s worth it for cakes that are legendary, custard – also from scratch – that is a conversation piece, and a Marionberry stuffed cookie that will demand your complete attention.

Tulip Pastry Shop

8322 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 286-3444

Vinyl Resting Place

Vinyl Resting Place, St. Johns

Vintage vinyl + historic St. Johns = no brainer. Owners Toby Tobiason and Pat Smith, Vinyl Magnate and Vinyl Design respectively, specialize in jazz, folk, and blues records but also carry much more.  Simply stated, they “buy and sell interesting records.”

They like the old sound, and they like the old way. Pat likens their store to any mom ‘n pop shop you’d find in the 50s.  And why shouldn’t she? Doing it the vintage way, her commute consists of walking and waving to the neighbors who frequent the shop so often they have their pictures, like family, hung in a collage on the wall.

Vinyl Resting Place

8332 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 247-9573

www.vinylrestingplaceusa.com

Weir’s Cyclery

Wier's Cyclery, St. Johns

Before biking was Portland chic.  Heck, practically before God created the seventh day so that the entire city could go biking – there was Weir’s Cyclery. Saddling bipeds on two wheels since 1925, Weir’s is the oldest in the city.  Passed from father to son a couple of times, Weir’s is in its third generation with Steve, who specializes in Specialized and Raleigh, and of course the traditional Red Line for the BMX crowd.

In reality, not a word needs to be written about these folks.  They’ve been thriving for 82 years in the crazy obsessed Portland bike culture.  ‘Nuff said.

Weir’s Cyclery

5036 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 283-3883

www.weirscyclery.com

Fencing Center – Salle Trois Armes

Salle Trois Armes, St. Johns

A classic sport for a classic neighborhood –it’s a classic fit.  Coach Rocky Beach and Maitre d’Armes, Delmar Calvert, who received his first fencing master’s degree while serving in the French Foreign Legion, offer traditional as well as Olympic-style sport fencing training for both genders, all ages.

The story goes that Coach Beach used to live in St. Johns in its earlier heyday and believed it would be the right spot to which to return to establish his beloved fencing center.  At that time, however, the area had suffered a few setbacks, and his shop lights were the only ones on the street still bright come nighttime.  But Rocky believed if he just kept those bulbs burning, other proprietors would eventually come.  Suffice to say that Kevin Costner and a cornfield have nothing on Rocky Beach and Portland’s St.Johns neighborhood.

Fencing Center– Salle Trois Armes

8517 N. Lombard Street

Portland, OR 97203

(503) 285-2962

www.fencingcenter.org

St. Johns Theater — Not to be confused with the McMenamin’s Theater and Pub. This awesome old movie house serves pizza and beer, good coffee and general movie snacks all for prices you don’t find in movie theaters. There are theaters up and downstairs but potential patrons should take note that the top theater screen is much smaller and the seating a little awkward. The bottom theater is stunning and every seat is a good seat.

Thanks to our contributing authors to the St. Johns page, local residents Kelly Tadlock and C. Smith.

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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St Johns Review Newspaper 
St. Johns has had their own newspaper for 107 years. It is the oldest community newspaper in Portland. While it accepts advertising to pay for the publication …

Under the St. John’s Bridge 
A great place to be!

St. John’s Parade 
The St. John’s Parade has an official web site now at http://www.stjohnsparade.com Check it out.