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The Best In-Person Things to Do in Portland This Weekend: A Thousand Ways (Part Two), Naomi Pizza Kitchen, and More

The second installment of 600 Highwaymens interactive performance A Thousand Ways begins its run at Portland Center Stage this weekend.
The second installment of 600 Highwaymen's interactive performance A Thousand Ways begins its run at Portland Center Stage this weekend. Boom Arts via Instagram

Governor Brown announced this week that fully vaxxed Oregonians can stop wearing masks in most public spaces (yay!), but our roundup of weekend activities still keeps social distancing in mind. See our picks below, from a vintage sale at Nordic Northwest to 600 Highwaymen's interactive performance A Thousand Ways (Part Two): An Encounter, and from places to get smoked meat for Barbecue Day (like Matt's BBQ) to a nostalgic Naomi Pizza Kitchen pop-up at Pop Pizza. For even more options, check out our guides to the best online events this week and the best things to do all month long

FOOD & DRINK
Try some new recipes from Gregory Gourdet's cookbook. Local chef Gregory Gourdet, who previously competed on Top Chef and is featured on the current season in Portland as a judge, released his debut cookbook, Everyone's Table: Global Recipes for Modern Health, this Wednesday. The new book features approachable, globally inspired recipes with an emphasis on health and wellness, with dishes free from dairy, soy, legume, and gluten. Pick up a copy at Powell's or your other favorite local bookstore and whip up some flavorful dishes like slow-cooked salmon with Ti Malice sauce or grilled carrots with herby coconut yogurt and spicy beet vinaigrette.

Read on EverOut »

Good Afternoon, News: Multnomah County Stays at High Risk, and To Mask or Not To Mask is the Question

A repeating pattern of blue, disposable masks on a bright yellow background.
Oregon leaders scramble to make new mask guidelines after CDC announcement. Yulia Shaihudinova

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

In local news:

Multnomah County will not be moving to the “Lower Risk” COVID-19 restriction level next week because county health officials did not submit the required vaccination equity plan by today’s deadline. The county health department aims to submit the equity plan to the Oregon Health Authority for approval to move to lower restrictions in time for Memorial Day weekend.

• The Oregon Health Authority is scrambling to develop new masking guidelines for businesses after Governor Brown announced fully vaccinated Oregonians no longer need to wear masks in most public spaces. The state epidemiologist said Friday that businesses choosing to allow mask-free shopping will most likely be required to check each customers’ vaccination card. For the record, I will be keeping my mask on because I don’t want to be confused with an anti-masker and/or anti-vaxxer, thank you very much.

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This Week In Portland Food News: Screen Door Opens Its Pearl District Location, Andina Launches a Takeout-Only Concept, and Quaintrelle is Moving

Screen Door has expanded with a second location slinging savory Southern fare in the Pearl District.
Screen Door has expanded with a second location slinging savory Southern fare in the Pearl District. Screen Door

This week, the brunch favorite Screen Door opens a second location in the Pearl District, Andina launches its new Peruvian street food spinoff Chicha for takeout and delivery only, and Quaintrelle makes a move to Southeast Portland. Plus, a new poutine cart has arrived, and New Zealand-style "real fruit" ice cream is on the way. Read on for all of that and more culinary updates. For more ideas, check out our food and drink guide.

NEW OPENINGS AND RETURNS


Chicha
The upscale Peruvian spot Andina, which has been on hiatus since winter, reopens today with a brand-new menu and takeout-only concept called Chicha, led by the restaurant's new executive chef Alexander Diestra, who's previously spent time at Saucebox and Clarklewis. Named for a word that describes the colorful subculture of artists and musicians in Lima, Chicha's menu is inspired by Peruvian street food, with dishes like papa rellena (Peruvian-style croquettes), anticuchos (skewered meats), empanadas, bowls, and sanguches (Peruvian sandwiches).
Northwest
Pickup or delivery

Read on EverOut »

Multnomah County Misses State Deadline, Will Not Move to Lower Risk Next Week

A gloved hand holding a bottle of the Covid-19 vaccine.
Multnomah County health officials will submit the required vaccine equity plan next week. Paul Biris

Multnomah County will not be moving to “Lower Risk” COVID-19 restrictions level on May 21 as previously anticipated because county health officials declined to submit a required vaccine equity plan to the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) by the Friday deadline. According to a statement posted on Multnomah County’s website Thursday, county health officials will instead submit an equity plan to OHA on May 21, with the goal of moving to “Lower Risk” on May 28, in time for Memorial Day weekend.

In a press conference Tuesday, Governor Kate Brown announced that in order for counties to move to “Lower Risk” status—most food and entertainment, including indoor dining and gyms, venues can operate at 50 percent capacity—they must reach a 65 percent vaccination rate for residents age 16 and older, and submit a vaccine equity plan to OHA. Multnomah County has vaccinated 63 percent of residents 16 and older as of Monday and is projected to meet the 65 percent vaccination rate requirement on Friday—the deadline to be considered to be moved to “Lower Risk” on May 21.

Multnomah County received the guidelines of what needs to be included in the vaccine equity plan Wednesday morning, three days before the deadline.

County health officials did not submit an equity plan this week because they wanted to give the equity plan the “same attention to inclusion that the County has given to its overall COVID-19 response,” according to the statement.

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Lots of People Are Really Mad at Seattle for Being in the Top Ten BBQ Cities

According to ordinary America, Seattle is permitted to have a top BBQ joint. But it cannot be one of the top BBQ cities in the US. Why?
According to ordinary America, Seattle is permitted to have a top BBQ joint. But it cannot be one of the top BBQ cities in the US. Why? Charles Mudede


[The following was originally published by our sister-wife at The Stranger in Seattle. Follow them for all the news happening up north!—eds.]

At the end of last month, a small business not far from my place in Columbia City, Lil Red’s Takeout & Catering, found itself in the pages of a new book, Black Smoke: African Americans and the United States of Barbecue, by Adrian Miller.

The author, as Seattle Times' Bethany Clement pointed out, is a "James Beard Book Award winner and certified Kansas City Barbeque Society judge"; and so his determination that Lil Red’s was one of the top black-owned barbecue joints in the US put it on the map. Suddenly, something appeared at this small restaurant that I've never seen in the entire time I've known of its existence (2 years): a line to the counter. Indeed, the business was so busy during Mother's Day weekend that it even ran out of food to cook and sell.

A text from a friend:

Lil Red's got a national write up of the top 20 black owned businesses in the United States and now you can't even get in there. People are lining up outside that place; [my husband] tried to get me some jerk chicken for Mother's Day, he waited in line outside for like 15 minutes, and didn't get anything because they ran out of food!

Selecting Lil Red’s as one of the top US BBQ spots was not controversial. It seemed plausible that Seattle could have at least one such business deserving of that honor. The feeling of plausibility, however, instantly evaporated when today, May 13, the website Chef’s Pencil, a "resource for professional chef recipes, professional cooking advice, and news from the culinary industry," placed Seattle in the seventh position for top BBQ cities in the US.

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This Weekend: Watch HUMP's Greatest Hits with Fans and Producers!

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As you know, HUMP! is America's sweetest li'l dirty movie festival, featuring five-minute amateur porn flicks submitted by horny enthusiasts from all over the Pacific Northwest (and the world)! And after 15 years of HUMP!, you better believe we have a huge backlog of great, sexy short films... and wouldn't you like to revisit some? YES, YOU WOULD!

For three more big weekends including TONIGHT, Friday, May 14, and tomorrow Saturday, May 15 (with a live viewing party, where you can watch with other HUMP! fans and producers), we'll be streaming a brand new volume of our festival, called "HUMP! Greatest Hits, Volume 3." This volume contains even more audience favorites—some you may remember, some you've never seen before—that are hot 'n' sexy, creative 'n' kinky, and heartfelt 'n' hilarious. And even better? In select screenings, you'll be able to watch LIVE with other hotsy-totsy HUMP! fans—and even some of the festival's directors and performers! As always, HUMP! features a cornucopia of body types, shapes, ages, colors, sexualities, genders, kinks, and fetishes—all united by a shared spirit of sex-positivity. It's a celebration of creative sexual expression, and a terrific (and hot!) way to be reminded that our humanity lies in our differences.

SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? Put some excitement into your weekends by streaming "HUMP! Greatest Hits, Volume 3" in the comfort of your own home (or bedroom) continuing tonight Friday, May 14, and tomorrow Saturday, May 15 (with other HUMP! fans and producers). GET YOUR TICKETS NOW AND HERE!

Want a sexy taste of what you'll see? Watch the trailer for "HUMP! Greatest Hits, Volume 3"!


Good Morning, News: Gov. Brown Follows CDC's Mask Advice, Council Pauses Portland Street Response Expansion, and What About Vax Fakers?

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

Portland City Council taps the brakes on expansion of the Portland Street Response team, who answers mental health calls instead of the cops.
Portland City Council taps the brakes on expansion of the Portland Street Response team, who answers mental health calls instead of the cops. City of Portland

GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! Look at your watch now, you're still a super hot female. You got your million dollar contract, and they're all waiting for your hot track. LET'S GO TO PRESS.

IN LOCAL NEWS:

• Following an advisory from the CDC, Gov. Kate Brown has relaxed mask mandates for the state, saying that fully vaccinated people don't have to wear masks—either indoor or outdoor—in public spaces. BUT! BUT! BUT! She also said that the state will be offering guidance to businesses within the next few days about the option of lifting mask and distancing requirements after verifying customers’ vaccination status. (So don't go whipping your mask off in the middle of Fred Meyer just yet!) Our Isabella Garcia breaks it all down for you.

• In last night's Portland city budget meeting (that went well past normal working hours) commissioners haggled over allocations for the coming year, with a lot of focus on the Portland Street Response program, which sends non-police emergency response to 911 calls related to mental health crises or regarding unhoused people. Much to the chagrin of its biggest booster, Commish Jo Ann Hardesty, the council voted against providing funds that would allow the program to expand city-wide. Our Alex Zielinski watched these hearings like a hawk, and files this very informative report!

• KOIN News recently wrote another super tiresome and wrong-headed "Portland is Dying" story that is somehow worse than the ones that've come before. Our Wm. Steven Humphrey (hey, that's me!) takes it apart in his usual surgical, smart-assy style.

Continue reading »

City Council Votes Against Fully Funding Portland Street Response in 2021-22 Budget

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Kathleen Marie / Portland Mercury

Portland City Council voted against including funds in the 2021-22 city budget that would have allowed the city's Portland Street Response pilot program to expand citywide within the year.

Commissioners made the decision during a Thursday council meeting on Mayor Ted Wheeler's $5.7 billion proposed city budget, which Wheeler initially released on April 29. The Thursday meeting focused on amendments city commissioners want to see added to Wheeler's proposed budget. One of those amendments, proposed by City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, focused on putting $3.6 million towards Portland Street Response, a program housed within Portland Fire and Rescue that provides non-police emergency response to 911 calls related to mental health crises or regarding unhoused people. The program is currently operating as a pilot confined to a one-van team of four people, made up of mental health clinicians and emergency medical technicians, in Southeast Portland's Lents Neighborhood. The year-long pilot, which was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic's hiring delays, began in mid-February.

During the city's last budget cycle, City Council voted to move $4.8 million from the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) into a reserve fund for Portland Street Response. Wheeler's proposed budget suggests allocating just under $1 million of that fund to Portland Street Response, to allow the program to complete the year-long pilot in Lents. Hardesty's $3.6 million boost would have used those reserve funds to allow the pilot to expand to a citywide program with six teams starting in March 2022, a month after the pilot concludes. City Commissioner Carmen Rubio voted in support of the plan.

Wheeler and city commissioners Mingus Mapps and Dan Ryan voted against Hardesty's amendment out of concern that the pilot needs to be evaluated by City Council before ramping up to cover the entire city.

"We are completely committed to expanding this program as soon as possible, but I can tell you there are pieces of this program that we have not figured out yet," said Mapps, whose office oversees the Bureau of Emergency Communications (BOEC), which manages the city's 911 call center. "It is possible for government programs to fail... and if it does, I think we will have lost one of the most exciting policy opportunities of a generation."

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The Best Things To Do from Home in Portland This Week: May 13-19, 2021

Hollywood Theatre will show Melvin Van Peebless 1968 film The Story of a Three-Day Pass in their virtual screening room starting Friday.
Hollywood Theatre will show Melvin Van Peebles's 1968 film The Story of a Three-Day Pass in their virtual screening room starting Friday. Everett Collection

Portland will soon graduate to the Oregon Health Authority's "Lower Risk" tier on its path to reopening, but in the meantime, we've got another roundup of online events to keep you entertained at home. Read on for the crème de la crème of options this week, from a reading with Yaa Gyasi to Hollywood Theatre screenings of the '60s classic The Story of A Three-Day Pass. Plus, look ahead to the best things to do in Portland all month long.

THURSDAY

COMMUNITY
Immerse
Learn how Portland's Freshwater Trust is working to improve the quality of rivers and aquifers in the Northwest and beyond at this virtual fundraiser, which centers a panel discussion with Freshwater Trust President Joe Whitworth, Salt & Straw co-founder Kim Malek, and entrepreneur Kevin Surace.

Read on EverOut »

Fully Vaccinated Oregonians Can Stop Wearing Masks in Most Public Spaces, Governor Brown Announces

Six different types of masks laying on a flat surface.
Fully vaccinated people can stop wearing masks in most public spaces. Kilito Chan

Governor Kate Brown announced Thursday that, starting immediately, fully vaccinated Oregonians can stop wearing masks in most public spaces, both inside and outside, in accordance with new US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.

The exceptions include public transportation, hospitals, correctional facilities, public schools, and long-term care facilities. Shortly after the CDC’s announcement earlier today, TriMet shared on social media that it will require riders to wear masks until September 13 at the earliest, in alignment with US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) guidelines.

In a press statement, Brown said that the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) “will be providing updated guidance for businesses, employers, and others” in the coming days to allow for the option of lifting mask and distancing requirements after verifying customers’ vaccination status.

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Good Afternoon, News: KOIN's Terrible "Portland is Over" Story, Republicans are B-Holes, and CDC Says Vaxxed Can Go Maskless

CDC says, If youre fully vaxxed, you can take off your mask.
CDC says, "If you're fully vaxxed, you can take off your mask." But will Gov. Brown lift the mask mandate? Marina123 / Getty Images

Here's your daily roundup of all the latest local and national news. (Like our coverage? Please consider making a recurring contribution to the Mercury to keep it comin'!)

THE BIG STORY:

• The CDC announced today that those who have been double-vaxxed can go maskless inside and out (with caveats, of course). More on that in our National News section... BUT WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR OREGON, who is still under mask mandates? Gov. Brown is expected to issue a decision about that later this afternoon, so stand by.

IN LOCAL NEWS:

• KOIN News recently wrote another super tiresome and wrong-headed "Portland is Dying" story that is somehow worse than the ones that've come before. Our Wm. Steven Humphrey (hey, that's me!) takes it apart in his usual surgical, smart-assy style.

• Following on the heels of the FDA and CDC's recommendation, both Oregon and Washington state have approved the safety of the Pfizer vaccine for kids 12- to 15-years-of age.

• Spicy City Hall Goss: Suk Rhee, the director of the Office of Community & Civic Life, abruptly announced today she was stepping down from the beleaguered bureau which has had multiple complaints from employees about its "culture of fear." Rhee leaves on the heels of an announcement from the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office that the bureau must release an outside consultant's report that looked into the bureau’s very dicey workplace culture.

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Portland Slam Poet Jordan Wolmut on Trauma, Performance, and Her Poem Trigger Warning

Jordan Wolmut performing <i>Trigger Warning</i>.
Jordan Wolmut performing Trigger Warning. Virtualandia! recording screen grab, via Literary Arts.

In Trigger Warning, her award-winning poem, Portland poet Jordan Wolmut dissects the concept of a slam poetry competition while taking part in one.

In the poem, Benson High School senior Wolmut recounts the traumas she’s experienced in her life—childhood abuse, and the death of her mother at 14—while weaving in observations about how slam poetry sometimes requires poets to retraumatize themselves on the stage. In Trigger Warning, she calls this “Reliving every pain possible to get all 10s” from the judges.

“Don’t you see me breaking?” the poem continues. “Don’t you see me shaking? The judges love that shit.”

Earlier this month, Trigger Warning earned Wolmut the top prize in the #Virtualandia! Youth Poetry Slam, a virtual version of Literary Arts’ annual Verselandia! competition for Portland high schoolers. It was Wolmut’s second time winning the competition; she first won in 2019. Wolmut has also competed as part of the Oregon team in Brave New Voices, an annual international youth slam poetry festival.

In fact, it was the Brave New Voices final competition in 2019 that inspired Wolmut to pen Trigger Warning. Wolmut tells the Mercury in a recent interview that while Brave New Voices typically includes trigger warnings for sensitive subjects before poems begin, some trigger warnings were accidentally omitted in 2019, prompting anger and hurt from some attendees. For Wolmut, the incident brought up ambivalent feelings about trigger warnings, and about how trauma functions in slam poetry in general.

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Takeout Club: Tope's Rooftop Tacos and Spicy Margaritas Are Back!

Pescado Frito Tacos at Tope
Pescado Frito Tacos at Tope Suzette Smith

Taco bar on a downtown rooftop sort of reviews itself. Yes, of course you want that. But then you find out there's vodka in the fish fry batter and the Spicy Margaritas come with a ring of salt and dehydrated chili peppers. Hold up. There's chocolate in there!? Lets get into why I think the Hoxton hotel roof restaurant Tope should probably start taking reservations.

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New Savage Lovecast: Wait. Bill and Melinda??

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My, what a fetish-y show we have for you this week!


Genital stretching? Check. Chastity belts? Sure. Piss play? Why not? Gainer/Feeder? Let's go!


In a more wholesome turn, Dan welcomes Dr. Debby Herbenick back to the show. The sex educator answers a question about the nature of multiple orgasms for women and the unwelcome phenomenon of sex headaches.


And finally, Dan gets into some complex thermodynamics as he explains how to keep your dildo nice and cold. But not too cold.


Listen here:


The 7 Most Terrible Lines from KOIN's "Is Portland Over?" Article

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Screenshot from KOIN News

Citizens of Portland: I regret to inform you that the internet has given birth to yet another tiring, thoughtless “Portland is dying” think piece—this one courtesy of KOIN news.

I can’t imagine that viewers were clamoring for such a story, since it’s been done (so terribly) before, but KOIN’s recent article “From Wonderful to War Zone: Portland’s Reputation Transformation”—posing the unasked-for question, “Is Portland Over?”—takes the trope to new and dizzying heights.

While each paragraph of “From Wonderful to War Zone” contains at least one problematic phrase—that title for starters!—I’m a busy guy, and I’ve got more important things to do than constantly swatting down wildly inaccurate opinion pieces from every uninformed ding-dong that comes down the pike. But to give you a quick idea of the pro-business slant this article takes, the story contains quotes from 14 people, 7 of whom are business owners (!!), four out-of-towners, two misinformed people, and one local mayor—whether he knows what he's talking about is for you to decide. Interestingly not a single local homeless or social justice advocate was interviewed, even though the story hinges on homeless and social justice issues.

As you can guess, there's A LOT of ridiculousness here—which is why I’m limiting this rebuttal to only 7 of the most egregiously stupid statements in KOIN's article (of which there are oh-so-many). Buckle up! It’s gonna be fun.


1) “Everywhere you look, the City of Roses has become the city of trash and filth.”

This is THE VERY FIRST SENTENCE. Now if this story was clearly labeled as an "opinion piece” from yet another know-nothing, white business dude shaking his fist at the clouds while cursing the rising cost of potatoes… who would care? We'd all roll our eyes and move on with our lives. But nope! KOIN's article is presented as actual “news,” which means they presumably believe that this wild first statement is solidly based in fact.

So let’s break it down, shall we?

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