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Celebration of life held in Pioneer Courthouse Square on Sunday, May 15, to honor former mayor.

COURTESY PHOTO: KOIN 6 NEWS - Crowd gathers at celebration of the life Bud Clark.In a celebration fit for "The People's Mayor," family, friends, former colleagues and community members gathered at Pioneer Courthouse Square to remember Bud Clark on Sunday, May 15.

Clark died in February at the age of 90. But he cemented his place in Portland's history when, as the barkeeper and owner of the Goose Hollow Inn, he unexpectedly defeated incumbent Mayor Frank Ivancie in 1984.

That catapulted him onto the international stage, from TV appearances to New York Times articles. He served two full terms through 1992 and his impact on the Rose City continues to this day.

"You look at what he did in his eight years as mayor: the Oregon Convention Center, revitalized Union Station, revitalized the Transit Center, moved community policing. And he did it all with decency, civility," said Kerry Tymchuk, the executive director of the Oregon Historical Society.

Clark's crowning achievement is the Oregon Convention Center, built during a recession.

"It gave people confidence (that) the city had a future and there was prosperity ahead," he said to Ken Boddie of KOIN 6 News in 2016.

The celebration included personal remembrances and performances by the Portland Youth Philharmonic, Pink Martini founder Thomas Lauderdale and Kathleen Saadat, the Mel Brown Quartet and the MarchFourth Marching Band as well as a complimentary "Ice Cream Social" from Salt & Straw. Boddie, KOIN 6 News anchor, hosted the event.

Earlier in the day, volunteers with SOLVE held a "Bud Clark's City" clean-up of downtown Portland, an effort to get residents to work together and keep the city clean and welcoming.

"The best way to honor Bud Clark is to do what he did, to step up, to care about the city," Tymchuk said. "To just get involved and make a difference and to make Portland a better place. We need that now."

KOIN 6 News is a news partner of the Portland Tribune.

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