If you’d rather soak in the sun closer to home, our events calendar has everything from rooftop soirées to inflatable obstacle course races — but we’ll start today with our spotlight series on St. Johns.
The park beneath the St. Johns Bridge has become one of the most beloved public spaces in Portland, hosting everything from weddings to naked bike rides.
But 50 years ago, the Cathedral Park site was home to nothing more than junkyards and factories.
It wasn’t until the 1970s that “honorary mayor” Howard Galbraith and his neighbors raised $7.5 million to clean up the area and build the park we know today.
Check out our video for the full story behind the park, including its connection to Lewis and Clark. And if you’re in North Portland next weekend for the St. Johns Bizarre and Parade, be sure to pay it a visit.
The Oregon Legislature is getting close to passing a $2 billion tax hike on businesses to help fund K-12 and preschool education — but the final bill won’t make everyone happy.
One poison pill is an amendment that forbids local governments from passing new business taxes of their own.
That means programs like the Portland Clean Energy Fund, which local voters agreed to finance with a tax on corporations, would be banned in the future. The provision isn’t retroactive, so PCEF itself can stand.
Another issue is that much of the new revenue could be gobbled up by rising pension costs. The Legislature is considering how to cut costs in the pension system, but any tweaks are far from settled, and they’re unlikely to produce enough savings to close the pension funding gap.
The likely result is that not all (or even most) of this $2 billion investment will be used to hire new teachers and support staff. But it will allow for some gains — and help fend off deep staffing cuts — and that’s probably enough to get it across the finish line.
In other news…
Nearly half of e-scooters crashes result in head injuries, according to a study from Austin, Texas. Helmets are required here in Portland, but many riders ignore that rule, and it’s not clear yet how strictly PBOT plans to enforce it. (KGW)
Mayor Wheeler has released his budget proposal for 2019-20, and a big investment in homeless shelters and social services is one of the highlights. (Portland Mercury)
Blazers center Enes Kanter says he was taunted over his Turkish nationality during Game 2 against the Denver Nuggets. The best-of-seven series resumes tonight in Portland, and we suspect Enes will get nothing but hometown love. (OregonLive)
The inaugural Funklandia festival is going down at Goodfoot this weekend, and the lineup of local artists is impressive. (Willamette Week)
🌿 Friday, May 17 – Saturday, May 18: Geek out on the art and science of cannabis at Willamette Week’s Cultivation Classic (SE | Buckman)
🎙️ Catch a Live Wire live show – (NE | Alberta)
🛍️ Shop for vintage Nordic treasures – through Saturday (SW | Metzger)
🎥 Watch queer documentaries – through Sunday (NE | Hollywood)
🎉 Head to a huge Cinco de Mayo fiesta – through Sunday (Downtown)
🌷 Catch the tulips before they’re gone – through Sunday (Woodburn)
🍄 Go to a psychedelic music festival (Downtown)
🎽 Race through an (inflatable) obstacle course (N | Kenton)
🏇 Celebrate Derby weekend at Circa 33 (SE | Belmont)
👒 Or wear your biggest hat to Pope House (NW | Alphabet)
👋 Ditch your clutter at a spring cleaning event (NE | Rose City Park)
🎺 Get your funk on at Goodfoot – through Sunday (SE | Kerns)
🏃 Run a race along the Columbia River (N | Sunderland)
🐱 Take your cat to a neighborhood social (NE | Laurelhurst)
🎉 Celebrate Cinco de Mayo on a rooftop (SE | Central Eastside)
🛍️ Or support local “makers de Mayo” (SE | Arleta)
🗣️ Hear a talk about addiction and mindfulness (Downtown)
🎙️ Tell a story about motherhood, or just listen in (NE | Albina)
😃 Play games and sports at Monday Funday (SE | Buckman)
🎨 Support indigineous artists and makers (Downtown)
🗣️ Get help sharpening your elevator pitch (SE | Central Eastside)
🎭 Take the kids to an “electrifying” musical – through May 8 (Downtown)
Since we don’t send newsletters on the weekend, we’ll go ahead and say it now: May the Fourth be with you. 😉
We’ll see you Monday.