The beginnings of Slice of a City and a venture to Portland, Oregon
I moved to Portland for the love of trees, a best friend, and a job that advertised I would be working in the heart of the Rose City’s trendy Pearl District. How great is that? And, how great it was to be lost in a new city with so many unknowns to explore and experience. There I was, feeling 16 again, with a fresh driver’s license and no access to GPS–only adventure.
The new commute to the corporate office downtown brought me in from SE Portland down Grand Avenue. I was in awe of never before seen stores such as Denali Furniture and Rejuvenation Hardware, not to mention, the mass amount of bike commuters heading west over the Hawthorne Bridge. I’d recognize my turn over the Willamette River when I came upon Stark’s Vacuum, and I’d sing, “over the Burnside Bridge I go.” The iconic Stagg sign would sing back, “What’s your dream?” During lunch time, I walked, shopped, and ate my way through the Brewery Blocks.
Lunch in the Brewery Blocks. This five block shopping and professional district (former site of the Blitz-Weinhard Brewery) is located in Portland’s vibrant, post industrial neighborhood known as the Pearl District.
Post run festivities at Tom McCall Waterfront Park in downtown Portland along the Willamette River.
Two months into my newfound favorite Portland neighborhood, the President of our company informed me we were moving our office to the downtown waterfront area. What I heard was, “No more prize-winning flower baskets decorating the light posts, no more happy hour beers at Henry’s Tavern, and no more wandering sprees at Powell’s Book Store.” In place of that though, the waterfront offered perks such as a picture-perfect view of Mt. Hood (priceless), and lunchtime runs with a dose of green and fresh air at Tom McCall Waterfront Park. Casual business meetings were now held on the growing east side of town, and where I experienced the necessity of local artisan roasted coffee. This new work base also offered an alternative commute home, and with that, I fell in love with LexiDog on Macadam and John’s Landing neighborhood. Lesson learned: sometimes we’re creatures of habit and we need a little nudge to send us on our next adventure.
The more I narrow in on Portland’s unique city culture, the more I learn to appreciate all the gifts it has to offer. I wondered, is it possible (and ridiculously insane) to try and box the spirit of this city up and gift it for all to enjoy? While that same iconic Stagg sign can’t fit in a box, is it possible to squeeze in the essence and spirit of this city? And so, I set out to curate a story with items and elements of surprise and Slice of a City was born. Now let’s see where this adventure leads us…