Portlandia: Keep it Weird

“The dream of the 90’s is alive in Portland…”


As you may hear (or personally experience) Portland is a bit unique as compared to other US cities, even it’s closeby neighbors of Seattle and San Francisco. Whether you’ve seen IFC’s show “Portlandia,” or read articles about the strange happenings in our city, here’s a list of some truly weird things Portland has to offer.

Urban Chickens

1077804_557453817653091_1765907309_oEven in downtown Portland some residents choose to house urban chickens (up to three are allowed without a an official permit). In July one of our students came across a lost chicken in his apartment complex just outside of campus! It happens here more often than you might think.

Star Trek in the Park

Imagine watching an episode of Star Trek in real-time as it’s being produced- you can in Portland! For the past five summers the Atomic Arts theater company has play-acted episodes from this famous science fiction series. I recently attended the “Trouble with Tribbles” episode at the open-air theater in Cathedral Park wherein the writer of the episode came to watch and show his appreciation for the still die-hard fans. Sadly, this is the last year for Star Trek in the Park, but there are many other quirky events to attend as well.

Foodcart Heaven

pbj-sFoodcarts may have a bad reputation elsewhere, but in Portland they can be as gourmet and creative as a five star restaurant. One of my favorites, PBJ’s Grilled, takes the concept of an easy peanutbutter and jelly sandwich and grills it up a notch. Their Spencer sandwich (which comes to you freshly grilled and piping hot) includes campangnola bread, walnut butter, caramelized onions, capicola, brie, and pear jam. If sandwiches aren’t your thing, don’t worry, there are plenty of other foodcarts to be explored ranging from amazing Gyros to unusual Korean-Mexican combinations.


Those who live in or have visited Portland will know that the city’s westside is full of rambling hills and winding streets. What better way to appreciate this structure than to glide down on a bicycle at top speed? This is what zoo bombers do every Sunday night starting from the Oregon Zoo and racing through Washington Park. There is also the famous late night World Naked Bike Ride which happens annually every summer; more than 8,000 rode this year!

Serious Karaoke290844_2421570141871_2556865_o

While other US city dwellers may cringe at the very mention of karaoke, many Portlanders take this opportunity to either show off their skills or put on a show. From The Alibi Tiki Lounge to Chopsticks, private suite karaoke to large crowds to sing your heart out to, Portland really does have it all, even puppet karaoke.

Juli Tejadilla


  Juli Tejadilla is a full-time student in the Masters of International Management program. She previously graduated with two Bachelor of Arts in Marketing and Studio Art from Linfield College. While her interest in international business began as an undergraduate student, she has been traveling around the world since she was nine months old. Her travels have taken her all across Western Europe, the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, and most recently to Japan, China, and Vietnam. She hopes through the MIM program to learn key insights to conduct business internationally and to establish herself as a global citizen.


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Filed under Juli's Entries, Oregon, Portland

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