Friday night lights out: Portland's last social hurrah
On the evening of Friday, March 20, as elected leaders wavered about whether to restrict Portlander to their homes, signs of street life slowly went down with the spring equinox sun.
The warm evening brought people out to the Fields Park in the Pearl District, where couples sat close together, while bigger groups spaced themselves apart by the recommended six feet.
There was a modest stream of runners, walkers and parents exercising small children along the Willamette River Greenway Trail.
It runs all the way past the Broadway Bridge to downtown.
Crows gathered in the trees at sunset at Tom McCall Waterfront Park.
Some food carts were still open for business.
One food cart has given up the ghost.
Southwest Third Avenue heading south was quiet.
...As was Southwest Fifth Avenue.
The Google map of Friday evening Portland traffic usually still has some red or orange congestion zones on it by this time, but it was all green.
Benson Bubblers have been turned off.
All five locations of Powell's Books are closed, including the flagship at West Burnside Street and Northwest 10th Ave.
Little Big Burger was open for take-out, with two staff and three customers.
The normally bustling Life of Riley pub in the Pearl was dead.
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said he would issue some version of a shelter in place order for his city no later than Monday. "Aggressive social distancing works," he said. "We're moving aggressively to stay ahead of the virus."
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