Bits & Pieces: Portland Parks & Recreation plans to resume summer fun
Fun could be headed back to Portland parks this summer.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and government restrictions, the Portland Parks & Recreation's summer parks programs were canceled in 2020. But, Commissioner Carmen Rubio and the City Council have been working on restoring funding for many things, including the summer programs.
If COVID-19 and government restrictions allow, we could see the return of:
• Free Lunch & Play: Serving more than 100,000 meals to alleviate hunger.
• Summer camps: Outdoor day camps, sports and art camps would be available at 20 locations.
• Environmental education: Nature Day Camps, guided Ladybug Nature Walks and family programs would connect youngsters to the environment. There also would be education jobs and volunteering opportunities.
• Fitness in the Park: Expansion of outdoor fitness programs, including yoga, exercise and Zumba classes. Also, outdoor pools would open for lessons, classes, lap swims and team activities.
• The arts: Multnomah Arts Center and the Community Music Center would open, as well as outdoor activities at community centers, and free art and music activities at Free Lunch & Play sites and small-scale pop-up performances would be available.
• Gateway Discovery Park: Art and cultural activities would be hosted all summer at the East Portland park.
• Splash pads: Interactive play fountains and park splash pads are anticipated to reopen.
So, there is hope for a restoration of normalcy with Portland Parks & Recreation. To stay up to date, see http://www.portland.gov/parks.
International fashion house Gucci has opened at Pioneer Place mall. The 6,500-square-foot store officially opened Feb. 12 and showcases a wide collection of Gucci men's and women's shoes, handbags, luggage, small leather goods, accessories, fragrances and eyewear.
"The mood within the store is one of discretion, where understated drama is created by the surprising and unexpected combination of materials," a news release said, referring to soft elements such as velvet armchairs offset by harder surfaces and industrial fixtures and artisan-painted floors handcrafted in Italy.
Here's a reminder about the online PDX Jazz Fest, which provides programming through Saturday, Feb. 27.
Online access can be had for as little as $5 per show. The PDX Jazz Festival encourages people to join its members club (starting at $50); members can watch every festival concert for free. For details: http://www.pdxjazz.com. Shows will be available to view for 48 hours and films for 72 hours.
Upcoming livestreamed performances from abroad: "Indaba Is," featuring Thandi Ntuli, Sibusile Xaba, The Brother Moves On, Bokani Dyer, and The Ancestors featuring Nduduzo Makhathini and Mandla Miangeni from Johannesburg, South Africa, Feb. 26-27; "Behind the Boards" with Kassa Overall featuring Giovanni Russonello from Brooklyn, New York, 5 p.m. Feb. 27.
Upcoming livestreamed local performances: "The American Refrain: Jazz and Modern Music," featuring Noah Simpson, 8 p.m. Feb. 24; Marcus Shelby Quartet's "Black Music and Freedom," featuring Tiffany Austin, Darrell Grant and Carlton Jackson, 8 p.m. Feb. 26; Wayne Horvitz's "The Royal We" closes out the festival Feb. 27 live from Seattle's Royal Room.
One more film will be introduced: "Herb Alpert Is ...," featuring an exclusive Q&A with director and writer John Scheinfeld and author Ashley Kahn, Feb. 25-27.
Like many arts companies, Oregon Ballet Theatre has evolved. Its 2020-21 "OBT Moves" season continues in March with the launch of "(R)Evolve," a series of live talks exploring a range of issues impacting modern ballet.
The one-hour discussions will include panelists and live performance by OBT dancers to highlight their points.
The first two talks are "The Alchemy of Audience" on March 16 and "Can Ballet Survive Its Traditions?" on March 30 and will be moderated by Kevin Irving, OBT artistic director, and Kasandra Gruener, former OBT community engagement director. They'll be livestreamed at OBTV. For more, see http://www.obt.org.
Lan Su lanterns
There are no tickets remaining for the Chinese New Year Lantern Viewing Evenings at Lan Su Chinese Garden, Thursday-Sunday, Feb. 25-28. But for those lucky to attend, there will be limited capacity and one-hour timed entries (6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m.). And visitors surely will be in awe of the garden's new feature: a new 18-foot phoenix lantern sculpture from China.
For more: http://www.lansugarden.org.
Pink Martini's Thomas Lauderdale and China Forbes, as well as the Phil Baker Quintet, Tony Ozier and The Doo Doo Funk All Stars, and percussionist Miguel Bernal, pay tribute to late Pink Martini percussionist Derek Reith with the livestreamed concert "Beatloric!," 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 24, at http://www.albertarosetheatre.com. It's $20 to watch.
Reith was Pink Martini's percussionist for 18 years. He died in 2014 by suicide after battling mental illness. The concert is a benefit for the upcoming documentary "The Beat Goes On," which is about Reith's life, music and struggles.
Reminder: The 31st annual Cascade Festival of African Films, the longest-running African film festival in the United States, continues online through March 10 at http://www.africanfilmfestival.org. It's usually held at the Portland Community College's Cascade Campus.
It's free and open to the public. The festival celebrates "Africa Through African Lenses" with a curated collection of 25 films by African directors from more than 15 nations.
There has been a proliferation of wineries and tasting rooms in the past decade, but here's a salute to some of Oregon's wine pioneers.
Adelsheim Vineyard in Newberg is celebrating its 50th anniversary. It was one of 10 wineries that made wine from grapes planted on its own property in the north Willamette Valley before 1980. Adelsheim pays homage to the pioneering spirit of its winery and peers with Founders' Stories, a 10-part interview series, hosted by David Adelsheim.
They start March 1 with David Adelsheim. Ensuing interviews with other founding wineries include wine icons Diana Lett, Dick Erath, Nancy and Dick Ponzi and Susan Sokol Blosser and Bill Blosser. Interviews will be released on the first day of each month and can be found on the website http://www.adelsheim.com/50years, as well as podcasts on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and more.
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