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Twilight Prom at The Viewpoint Inn

November 18, 2008 6 comments
Twilight Prom in Corbett, Oregon

Twilight Prom in Corbett, Oregon

Twilight is one of the most anticipated movies of the holiday season. Based on a run away best selling series Twilight is the first installment in what looks to be a new major movie franchise (and the launch of Summit Entertainment).

Interest in all things Twilight are so high that one of the locations, Viewpoint Inn has been beseiged by series fans, who want to see where one of the film’s climatic scenes was filmed.

To celebrate the film’s release Viewpoint Inn is throwing a Twilight Prom to give fans a chance to relive Edward and Bella’s prom date.

The Twilight prom runs November 20th and 21st. Admission is $47 and includes:

  • Admission to The Prom
  • A Movie ticket to a midnight showing of Twilight
  • Food and non-alcoholic beverage
  • A Twilight T-shirt
  • A Twilight Poster
  • Pictures from the filming of Twilight

Given the success of the Twilight series it’s possible that not only will Twilight break the Oregon box office curse, but it will more than likely supplant The Goonies as Oregon’s premiere film destination for fans.

Twilight Prom tickets are are on sale now and reservations can be made via phone at 503-695-5811 or email [email protected]  The Viewpoint Inn is located at 40301 East Larch Mountain Road in Corbett, Oregon. Twilight opens in theaters on November 21st.

Categories: Events Tags: , ,

Storm Surge – Storm Large's Next Chapter

November 15, 2008 No comments
Storm Large Sings at The Selfless Afterparty

Storm Large Sings at The Selfless After Party

Storm Large has had a number of phases of her career: local lounge buzz singer, international television superstar (on Rock Star: Supernova),  and local celebrity.  Recently Storm has opened a new chapter to her career, almost literally.  With a novel in the works, a successful run in Cabaret and an upcoming one woman show entitled Crazy Enough Storm Large is expanding her universe and redefining herself as a performer.

Last week Storm appeared as a surprise guest in the much talked about Super Project Lab. She treated the crowd to renditions songs which artists had asked McCain to stop using in his campaign. It was a buzz worthy performance that snagged her another spot in the Super Project Lab November 22nd show.

On Thursday Storm played at the Pander Brothers’s Selfless after party. Storm appears on the Selfless soundtrack, a film which won top honors at this year’s Bend Film Festival.  Dressed in a long skin tight black dress, Storm sang soulfully with a depth of emotion and sophistication that counterpoints her often in-your-face larger than life style.

I spoke to Storm about her new direction and upcoming one woman show Crazy Enough. “I really hope people connect with it,” commented Storm, “there’s a lot of really dark and personal stuff in the show, and I don’t want people to just feel sorry for me.”

Last fall Storm played Sally Bowles in the Portland Center Stage production of Cabaret. “Researching the play and its context historically really impacted me, I was surprised how deep I got into the role,” Storm recalls, “and it popped my theater cherry and set me up for my show.”

In addition to preparing the show, Storm is also working on a novel. “I started blogging around all the election stuff, and it got me my first death threat…from a guy in Gresham!” explained Storm, “but I found that I loved writing, and there have been a number of authors who are really pushing me to write.”

Crazy Enough is set for Portland Center Stage 3/31/09 and will run 3 months. In the mean time Storm is singing up a storm, appearing at many key Portland events as well as providing the entertainment for private functions.

Storm’s single Ladylike made it all the way to  #5 on the Billboard charts, and so now the big questions is will Crazy Enough land her on Broadway?

Categories: Events, Music Tags:

Ignite Portland 4 Hits but KGW has an Epic FAIL

November 14, 2008 12 comments
Ignite Portland 4

Ignite Portland 4

Last night the Legion of Tech delivered another successful installment of Ignite Portland. If you’re not familiar with the event it’s an evening of presentations from people who are passionate about their topic, any topic. Presenters are given a set amount of time to talk with a predetermined number of slides which advance automatically as they speak.

Ignite typically hits a wide range of topics and subjects and is often peppered with Top 5 ways to do this, or the 10 commandments of that. Ignite moves along so swiftly it’s like watching  a stand up comedian telling spitfire jokes, some of them are sure to hit and make you forget about the ones that don’t.

The highlights of Ignite Portland Were:

The biggest failure of the evening was KGW’s reporting.  KGW has been getting its toes wet with social networking and so they decided to try to get involved by covering the event. While it’s easy to forgive Stephanie Stricklen for not knowing how to use the @Reply function on Twitter, Joe Smith’s coverage of Ignite Portland is almost unforgiveable. In some of the worst bumbling reporting on Portland Television so far this year, Joe Smith clearly had no idea where he was or what he was sent to cover. The reporting was so bad, no words can really do it justice, it really just speaks for itself. (View KGW’s reporting of Ignite Portland).

Ignite Portland 5 is scheduled for Feburary 19 and submissions are open now for talks. I’d really like to see the event reach out deeper into the Portland creative community and have a stronger representation from outside the close nit Portland Tech Community.

Categories: Events, Karaoke Tags: ,

Portland Milk Premiere with Gus Van Sant, Sean Penn and James Franco

November 13, 2008 No comments
Sean Penn in Milk - Portland Premiere =

Sean Penn in Milk - Portland Premiere

This Friday, Hollywood comes to Portland with a red carpet premiere of Gus Van Sant’s latest film Milk.  The event will be held at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall (1037 SW Broadway) as a benefit and celebration of the 40th anniversary of Outside In (a local charity which serves homeless youth and low-income adults)

As with any red carpet premier the list of people expected to attend can change, but early word is that Gus Van Sant, Sean Penn and James Franco are all expected to be there. PDXPipeline is reporting that Mayor-elect Sam Adams and The March Forth Marching Band are also expected to be in attendance.

Milk is one of Gus Van Sant’s highest profile films in years and it tells the story of prominent gay activist and San Francisco city politician Harvey Milk during the years leading up to his assassination in 1978.  Early buzz from some select critics who have seen the film is very very good, and this is a fantastic opportunity to see the film early and support a really worthy cause.

Tickets for the Milk red carpet debut are available for purchase online (via Ticketmaster) and at the Portland Center for the Performing Arts (PCPA) box office (1111 SW Broadway). Prices range from $37.75 – $71.75. The event starts at 8:30 pm.


Here is the Milk Trailer:


Categories: Events Tags: ,

Voicebox Karaoke – A Fantastic Addtion to Portland's Nightlife

November 7, 2008 4 comments
Scott Simon - Voicebox

Scott Simon - Voicebox

Karaoke is very popular in Portland, and as a result some find it very difficult to get up and belt out their favorite tunes in front of so many people.

Enter Voicebox, a brand new Karaoke ‘complex’ which just opened near NW 21st (2112 NW Hoyt St). Rather than a traditional Karaoke bar, Voicebox is divided up into six private rooms. Each room has the capacity for a different number of people (as few as 2 and as many as 24) and has its own private karaoke system.

Voicebox’s systems are all high end, with Samsung flat screen TVs and Yamaha speaker systems. The acoustics in each room are also ideal, one of the rooms has the feel of a recording studio and with the doors closed no one can hear your singing outside.  You won’t find a better sounding Karaoke experience in Portland

The karaoke systems are easy to use and let you queue up songs so you can spend less time picking songs and more time singing them. The the library of songs is pretty extensive but had some some notable holes (including Violent Femmes and Metallica).

All the rooms Karaoke connect to a center bar area that serves wine, beer, sake and light food with in-room waitress service so you don’t have to go out to the bar to get your drinks if you don’t want to. The staff at Voicebox is extremely friendly including owner Scott Simon, a former electrical engineer who got the bug to open Voicebox after a trip to Korea. Karaoke complexes are more common in Asia and Simon imported the idea while adding a decidedly North West twist.

Private rooms are rented by the hour with rates varying per room (the average is about $7 per hour per person) and Voicebox holds special events like an upcoming Karaoke Clinic for people to brush up on their karaoke skills.

Voicebox is a fantastic addition to the Portland nightlife scene. I had an absolute blast singing a ton of songs, many more than I’d ever be able to sing at a regular karaoke bar. I enjoyed taking risks and singing songs I’d never consider singing in front of a crowd (including Avril Lavigne’s Sk8ter Boy).  I really appreciated the fact there was no smoking inside Voicebox as going out to karaoke often means coming home reeking of smoke. Voicebox is an idea place for a birthday or bachelorette party and I can absolutely see going back with a group of friends.

Voicebox is at 2112 NW Hoyt St. (503) 303-8220. They do take reservations and I expect them to fill up on key nights very fast.

Here are pictures from the Voicebox opening event:

And Videos:

Categories: Books, Events, Karaoke Tags: ,

Wordstock – When Reading is A Party

November 6, 2008 2 comments

wordstockPortland is one of the most literate cities in the country and so when we throw a book festival, it’s a big deal. Every year I make sure to make my way down to the sea of literature that is Wordstock. This Book-A-Palooza is a cornucopia of books, authors, readings, workshops and signings. The festival runs Thursday through Sunday with the main focus being The Book Fair at the Convention Center Saturday and Sunday 9am – 6pm.

The list of authors participating is completely overwhelming so here are the ones that caught my eye:

John Hodgman– You might recognize John Hodgman from The Daily Show on Comedy Central, but if not you’ve seen him play “PC” on many of the recent Mac commercials on TV. Despite the fact that people often say I look like Hodgman (I don’t damn it), he’s my top pick for Wordstock. Hodgman is as smart as he is funny, and it would be a mistake to miss him.

Heather Vogel Frederick – A true luminary in the youth lit category, Heather Frederick has penned a wide range of award winning books including: The Mother-Daughter Book Club, Much Ado About Anne, The Voyage of Patience Goodspeed and Spy Mice: For Your Paws Only. If you’ve got kids, make sure you don’t miss Heather Frederick.

Monica Drake – Put simply, Monica Drake is fucking amazing. Her book Clown Girl is inventive, original and extremely entertaining. Everyone knows that Chuck Palahniuk comes from Portland, and someday soon they’ll know Monica Drake. Catch her now so you can say “I knew her when…”

Jamie S. Rich and Joelle Jones – like peanut butter and jelly these two prominent Portland comic book creators are as complimentary to each other as you can get. Jamie Rich’s latest Have You Seen The Horizon Lately is one of the best undiscovered books of the year and Joelle Jones’s doodles are better than 75% of all the artists out there. Joelle is also a hot rising star with a new book out with DC.

In addition to the festival, Saturday night is the Text Ball at the Left Bank Project. I’m a huge fan of this venue which continues to develop as one of THE places in Portland to throw a bash!

The Text Ball is an opportunity for Portland’s rich literary arts scene to celebrate itself while supporting one of its most beloved organizations, the Independent Publishing Resource Center. Attendees are invited to come “dressed as text” and compete for prizes for the most grammatically-correct costumes. The theme this year is FIGURES OF SPEECH.

The Text Ball takes place Saturday from 6-11 at Left Bank Project 240 N Broadway.

The Wordstock web site sucks (Widen & Kennedy did a crappy ass job on it) but the physical booklet with the schedule is actually usable. So for the complete guide your best bet is to drop by Powells and snag a copy or pick one up at the show itself.

Categories: Books, Events Tags: , , ,

Apple Tasting at The Portland Nursery

October 12, 2008 No comments
Over Thirty Types of Apples

Over Thirty Types of Apples

We’ve lived in Portland now for 15 years, and for some reason we’ve never managed to make it out to Portland Nursery’s Apple Tasting Event. Since we now live in Laurelhurst (after moving from the west side) we swore that we would not miss this popular Portland event.

So this weekend, with the perfect fall weather, we walked down to the Portland Nursery for some apple tasting. I was surprised at just how many people come out for this event (I saw almost half the people who live on our block there).

The whole family loved having the opportunity to taste over 30 different varieties of apples and pears. Our favorites:

  • Elstar – Tart eating apple developed for European markets. Excellent for sauces or pies.
  • Cox’s Orange Pippin – An Old English variety origination about 1830. Firm, juicy and aromatic apple. Wonderful for dessert.
  • Honey Crisp – Macoun x Honeygold. Crisp and juicy apple rated superior to McIntosh and Delicious for fresh eating and keeps up to five months in common storage.
  • Jonatha – Originated in 1826 as an open-pollinated chance seedling of Esopus Spintzenberg. This Apple has crisp, juicy, tart flesh. Goof for dessert and all other culinary Uses.
  • Liberty – Origin New York Fruit Experiment Station. Fruit is almost enturely red-skinned with sweet juicy flesh.

After we picked our favorites from the bunch we were able to buy them from huge tubs of apples in the middle of the nursery. If you missed out the apple tasting this weekend, fear not… the Portland Nursery is doing it again next weekend: October 17, 18, 19, 2008 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (Above apple descriptions courtesy of The Portland Nursery).

Categories: Events, Food Tags: , ,

Mythbusters – Live

October 5, 2008 1 comment
Mythbusters Adam and Jamie with Rich Emerson

Mythbusters Adam and Jamie with Rich Emerson

Let me get this out right from the start, in their live appearance the Mythbusters DO NOT Blow stuff up. Sitting in the sold out crowd at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall you could feel the collective hope that all the warnings and disclaimers about the show NOT containing explosions were false.

The two science geeks who host the popular Discovery channel show had a huge task ahead of them, how to entertain a group of people who would rather see you blowing crap up than talking about it.  I’m happy to report that Adam and Jamie (prompted by Host Rick Emerson) did a fantastic job of engaging and entertaining the audience for an hour and forty five minutes.

Billed as a ‘Behind The Scenes / Inside The Actor’s Studio for Science Geeks” the interactive talk gave an experience with Adam and Jamie that you just couldn’t get in an audio commentary on a DVD or in a behind the scenes snippet.  Shooting entirely from the hip both Mythbusters showed just how immensely entertaining they are, even in their every day life.

Peppered with video clips (which I wish they had more), the talk did have a few slow points, but Emerson did a solid job of moving things right along. The show reached its high point when members of the audience got to ask the Mythbusters their own questions.

Some of the nuggets of info gleaned from the talk:

  • In their spare time they do the kind of experiments that Discovery Channel won’t let them do on TV.
  • Upcoming episodes include ‘How to Polish A Turd” and “Slipping on a Banana Peel”
  • Discovery Channel nixed “How Many Licks Does it Take to Get To The Center of A Tootsie Roll Pop”
  • Jamie owns and runs his own company which does work for the private industry and the government
  • An Airplane will take off on a conveyor belt runway…damn it (so stop sending emails)
  • None should ever mess with Jamie’s béret
  • Their absolute favorite episode is “Lead Balloon”
  • The exploding water heater actually went up 750 feet in the air (with a 15 second hang time)

The finale of the show was a blooper reel and clip reel of some of their best explosions which they called “Explosion Porn” including a lot of footage from a high speed camera which was an absolute hit with the crowd.

The Mythbusters could have done a kitchy stadium style show for ‘the kids’ filled with explosions and pyrotechnics but they opted for a much more honest and informal chat.  I really enjoyed it but I think my sevenyear old son sill wanted to see explosions.

Categories: Events Tags:

Musicfest North West and Time Based Art Festival – TBA '08

September 4, 2008 No comments
Time Based Art at The Left Bank Project

Time Based Art at The Left Bank Project

Tonight two major arts and entertainment festivals had their kick-off events. Both showed that Portland is big enough to support two huge festivals, even when they run at the same time.

I started the evening at MusicFest NW, their kick off party was an outdoor cocktail party in the lot next to the Wonder Ballroom. Less of a scene than a gathering, the party was most notable for the extremely long line for the open bar. The bar line was almost as long as the line of people waiting to get in to see the bands. Did I really wait fifteen minutes for a shot of Soco?!?

I caught the Battles whose set was well received. As I listened to their mostly instrumental music, I couldn’t help but think “Music Geeks”. The Battles play with passion and energy but their music often is over-thought and muddled. I enjoyed some of their songs but wasn’t ever pulled out of my ‘hey I’m watching a music show’ space and so my aside from some toe tapping and light head bobbing the set left me a little cold. I was surprised at how many people brought kids to the show. Maybe mathrock is something that appeals to kids.

Just a hop skip and jump away at the new Left Bank Building PICA launched their Time Based Art festival with a warm and welcoming party. The party was open to anyone and everyone and the scene was a nice mix of people. The Left Bank Project (which is dubbed ‘The Works’ for the TBA Festival) is a very cool venue with so much space that there were tons of nook’s and crannies to explore. One area’s tenant was a version of Backspace Cafe just for the fest. Also a nice patio area featured a work in progress by Justin Gorman whose large format graphic painting was fantastic to see in progress.

Some of the other art, including Big Skin by Lizzie Fitch, Anna Halprin’s Blank Placard Happening and the Flash Choir were solid misses. (Perhaps the Flash Choir would have done better performing in the outdoor space).

A solid start though to two landmark Portland festivals

Categories: Events, Music Tags: ,