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Updated: Last Thursday fracas raises carfree question

Posted by on April 27th, 2007 at 8:44 am

(*Editor’s note, 4/29): My initial report got some facts wrong. I have tried to clean things up and I’ve added in more details. I regret the errors.


A car-less moment on Alberta.
File photo: 7/27/06

I wasn’t there, but I just read the news on the Oregonian Blog that things got a little out of hand at Last Thursday on Alberta last night.

From the reports (which were confusing, so I apologize if my facts are not 100% correct), about 200 people had gathered at NE 24th and Alberta Street and were dancing in the streets at about 11:00 pm. When the cops showed up to check things out, they got sidetracked by a drunk fight at NE 18th. From here the details are sketchy, but they involve a handgun, a taser, allegedly thrown bottles at cops, and so on…

All that is sad, because now I’m sure Last Thursday will get much less fun. But it’s this part of the story grabbed my attention,

“Some (people) tried to take over the street and jumped on cars, raising tensions with motorists and others in the area.”

I realize cars on the street were not solely to blame for this incident, but it reminded me of the effort begun last year to make Alberta Street carfree during Last Thursday.

As the event gains popularity, people are forced into the street. File photo: 7/27/06

I highlighted the issue last September and have heard since that the idea was brought to the Art on Alberta Organization. The last update was that a group of PSU students was tackling the plan as part of a class project but I have not heard much since last fall (*see update below).

Carfree Last Thursday

Dancers drew a big, on-street crowd last year.
File photo: 9/29/06

With increasing numbers of people attending the event and a very limited amount of sidewalk space, it is inevitable that conflicts between motorized vehicles and people will continue.

In a city with thousands of miles of streets, is it totally unreasonable to consider asking cars to avoid one street (not just an alleyway), for a few hours, for one night a month?

Next summer Portland will host Towards Carfree Cities, an international conference on building more people-friendly cities. Wouldn’t it be great if we had an example to share with the world, right in our own backyard?


UPDATE: According to archives of the Portland Carfree email list, the effort to close part of Alberta Street is being taken on by students from PSU’s Urban Studies department. Art on Alberta President Joe Blanchette has agreed to go forward with the “Alberta Street Safety Project” and is working with community representatives toward a carfree test-run at the upcoming Alberta Art Hop (5/19).

Learn more in emails here and here.

UPDATE: KATU has more details and great video coverage.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

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West Cougar
Guest
West Cougar

Expect massive resistance from Tri-met for any plan to close Alberta.

IMO a partial closure allowing busses but not cars would be a great compromise, but I suspect the liability lawyers at Tri-met would object. If there were ever an accident the plantiff’s attorney would have it too easy.

Paul Cone
Guest
Paul Cone

Actually I heard someplace recently (I can’t recall where) that Trimet at one point diverted the 72 route on to Sumner (one block north) on their own when Alberta got too busy. It is easy to do since Sumner runs straight through from 15th all the way to 33rd. Can anyone confirm that?

just a thought
Guest
just a thought

Although I agree that it would be nice to have a car free zone during special events, and especially one such as these which are labelled as “cultural and arts” events that tend to bring out large numbers of folks; I kind of wonder if it is really appropriate for the last Thursdays on Alberta Street. It seems to me that 95 percent of the people that show up to last Thursday are not very representative of the surrounding neighborhood (ie. whole lotta white folks). I feel like making them close down a major arterial road through that area of town, and possibly making the cars take a detour through the adjacent and quieter neighborhood streets is kind of a slap in the face to the families that have lived in that part of town for a long time (and the people who have just mover too I suppose), and just seems to perpetuate even more of the mass gentrification that has occured there and on other streets such as Mississippi or is trying to haven on Vancouver/Williams (the “gateway” to nopo?). Has anyone heard about how the people in the neighborhoods surrounding alberta actually feel about Last Thursdays?

Dylan VanWeelden
Guest
Dylan VanWeelden

I was there last night and like usual the crowd was very peaceful. The police came with multiple cars, motorcycles, firetrucks ambulances, and riot gear. The Portland Police created and unruly situation last night. If the police didn’t come to fight their would have been no problems. Like usual people were all having a good time and dancing the street. It’s unfortunate when a few disrespectful people (pedestrians and police) create a bad rap for a great event.

gabrielamadeus
Guest
gabrielamadeus

http://www.katu.com/news/7222156.html

check out that link for video of the awesome dance party in the street!

Kirsty
Guest
Kirsty

This coverage is so, so peculiar.

I was at this spontaneous dance party last night. Walking back to my bike(which was locked up outside the Star E Rose coffee shop at 24th & Alberta) I came across this awesome dance party & joined in for about an hour and a half, until it ended.

It was the most laid back, peaceful, fun dance party in a street I’ve ever witnessed. A DJ spinning records, & a couple of hundred smiling dancers – children, adults, old folks, taking up the entire block & having an awesome time.

There were about five police officers standing a block or so away at NE 23rd, just hanging out on the street, smiling, chatting with the crowd, & watching everything happening. They weren’t aggressive, or oppressive. They were just wonderful. I didn’t see them interfere once with the party. I did see some flashing police lights a couple of times five or six blocks west on Alberta, way in the distance.

Cars driving on Alberta that came upon the dance just politely put on their indicators & made a right hand turn to detour around the block. Many smiled, and honked their horns in support.

It was probably the most perfect, feel-good example of everybody sharing the road I think I have ever seen in my two years in Portland.

I didn’t see any fighting, or police officers being heavy handed, and I guess I’m just wondering when this might have happened. When the DJ played his last record, he thanked the crowd for dancing, everybody applauded and cheered him, and then people began to disperse.

That’s when I unlocked my bike and left, so perhaps things just got out of hand with some leftover stragglers refusing to leave?

Eitherway, I do need to stress that media coverage of this event in the Oregonian did not, in my opinion, reflect the calm, happy, cooperative mood or actions of the crowd whatsoever for the hour and a half I was dancing. It was a fun, happy reclamation of public streetspace.

Just had to share, thanks.

Jonathan Maus
Guest

Kirsty,
I’ll second your concerns over the media coverage. the police Bureau has a PR guy (Brian Schmautz) who does a good job of getting press releases out right away.

the problem is that the bureau is not a completely objective player in these events…they, like everyone, have cultural, personal, and political biases.

but the news outlets develop all their initial coverage solely from these police reports.

it’s not a perfect system, but it’s a bummer that most of the coverage makes it seem like a “chaotic” “mob” of “anarchists” when we all know from experience on Alberta that this is not what most likely happened.

Lisa Bellison
Guest
Lisa Bellison

Cars not *solely* to blame? How are they to blame at all, for people jumping on them? Unless the cars were on the sidewalk, what were they doing wrong? Driving in the street? Oh god forbid.

I live in the 'hood
Guest
I live in the 'hood

What does this melee have to do with car-free streets? I too was on Alberta last night (April 26 ’07) and while most of the crowd was peaceful there was (as always) a lot of alcohol flowing. Enforcing the public drinking/ intoxication laws would be a start to maintaining peace and safety, though potentially inflammatory. It is probably a no win situation.
I don’t know if I am more peeved by the jack booted thugs representing the PoPo, the self-important obnoxious drunks, or the Oregonian for implicating the “anarchist types” (???).
I do think Last Thursday is a nice way to get the freaks from Southeast and the yuppies from Lake O to mingle and pour a few bucks into my ‘hood. I also know Last Thursday has very little to do with ART. It is just a party. And like any party where there is alcohol, there will be those who overdo it.

Jonathan Maus
Guest

Lisa,

perhaps I should have worded that differently (and I may edit the post). I agree that cars have every right to drive on Alberta any time they want.

I just question the wisdom of doing so when there are hundreds of people walking around and I wonder if there’s a better solution.

I also realize that the interaction between cars and people can often end up in frustration and rage and lead to a dangerous situation.

no driver of a single car is to blame, it’s a larger issue for me and I think both cars and people would be happier if a satisfactory alternative to driving on Alberta during these events was found.

felix
Guest

The media screwed up the coverage and the police were the only reason for any mayhem.

Are you really surprised? Its what both groups do best!

The dance party was awesome!

benschon
Guest
benschon

“is it totally unreasonable to consider asking cars to avoid one street, for a few hours, for one night a month?”

Hear, hear, Jonathan.

It’s a “slap in the face” to the neighborhood to make Alberta a throughway for cars, 100% of the time, regardless of the circumstances. How about some balance? The transportation system won’t collapse, and people aren’t going to lose their civil rights or their livability if street is pedestrianized once a month. Who knows, the majority of users might even like it.

tonyt
Guest
tonyt

First off, drink idiots are drunk idiots, and we should be careful that we don’t appear to be making this mini-riot to be our justification for a car-free last Thursday. Car-free street = fun, drunk idiots = not fun. Although, I must say that I wasn’t there and I’ve seen first-hand how the Portland cops can provoke otherwise peaceful crowds. It’s almost like a skill of theirs.

And I agree with “just a thought” that the folks who actually live there should have a major say in what is ultimately decided.

That being said, I for years have thought that a car-free Last Thursday was an unavoidable eventuality on Alberta.

I don’t go there that often because I’m not a big crowd fan, but when I do go, I’m amazed how crowded and gridlocked the sidewalk can become. Those who wish to walk anywhere with any amount of efficiency simply have to spill onto the street and walk next to the parked cars within striking distance of traffic. That is a fact. We can wish it wasn’t the case but it is. Cops can tell a person here and there to get back on the sidewalk, but that won’t deal with the dynamic that creates the situation.

Last Thursday will continue to become more crowded and the number of peds spilling into the street will continue to grow. There is no way that is going to be stopped.

Are 4 hours of no cars, once a month, too much to ask for in a city that prides itself in being one of the most walkable/bikable/livable place to be?

As with so many things, we can either see it as a problem or an opportunity.

Matt Picio
Guest

“And I agree with “just a thought” that the folks who actually live there should have a major say in what is ultimately decided.”

They do. The neighborhood association is very active, and plays a major role. Any official actions, like diverting Tri-Met routes, having a street closure, etc. has to be cleared by the locals before it can be performed.

Last year for Worldwide Carfree Day, the people involved with Portland CFD canvassed the businesses along SW Ankeny as part of the application to close that street to cars for the weekend. Something similar would need to be done to close Alberta to traffic during Last Thursdays.

Martha R
Guest
Martha R

I grew up in a mid-size town in California, and after a new shopping mall was built in the late 1970s, the planners tried every trick in the book to revitalize the downtown. One of the things they did was to have a weekly farmer’s market on one of the main downtown streets. They completely closed the street to cars for about five hours in the afternoon/evening ONCE A WEEK, and everyone set up their booths and merchants stayed open late that night. The street closure was a few blocks long, so buses had to be re-routed, and all of the cross-traffic had to go way around, but it was quite a success. It brought back the concept that streets are public places, and lots of people regularly turned out for the market and had a great time.

If there are more people out of cars than in cars, NOT closing the street inconveniences more people than closing the street would. It’s such a no-brainer that I’m surprised that it hasn’t been done already.

Ali
Guest
Ali

I too live in the neighborhood – going on 9 years now, but – disclaimer – I’m white!
Lots of people, all ages walk Last Thursday. It’s pleasant to get out and see your neighbors and celebrate. There are many streets to reroute to, and though I don’t usually drive during the week, I know enough not to go down Alberta on last Thursday. Some people choose to drive it, just like they want to drive down Candycane lane, for the spectacle, and maybe to blast some music at the walkers. If we walked the streets more, wouldn’t all of our neighborhoods feel more friendly?

Dropped
Guest
Dropped

Said Jonathan: “I just question the wisdom of doing so when there are hundreds of people walking around and I wonder if there’s a better solution.”

I agree. Everytime I go down there I wonder why in god’s name would someone try and drive down that street on last Thursday. It’s not like you can’t take Killingsworth, which is four blocks north, instead. Closing the street once a month would be a great idea. Again, it is not like you are shutting down a vital artery — plenty of alternatives.

Of course, even through I live two blocks from Alberta, I admit I don’t go down to Last Thursday often. It doesn’t seem like it’s much different from any other day, with the exception of lots of drunk people walking around. Fun!

Matt Picio
Guest

I think more than one post has touched on a key issue here – society usually caters to the largest group being inconvenienced. On a “normal” day (is *anything* truly “normal”?), that would be drivers, but on Last Thursday, there are many times more pedestrians / cyclists / skateboarders / etc on the sidewalks of Alberta than there are motorists on the street. If we cater to the majority, then Alberta *should* be closed to motorized traffic on those Thursdays.

I suppose that’s a dangerous concept – I mean, what if people enjoy it? They might want to walk / bike / skate / dance more often, and we can’t have that, can we?

I mean, ’cause dancing is of the devil. Oh, wait, no – that’s video games. Or bicycling. Or clowns on tallbikes. (ok, sarcatic mode = off)

thedude
Guest
thedude

In other parts of the world its not that big of a deal to close off streets for pedestrian parties. Just a good old fashion street party. As US cities mature, carfree areas are going to become more and more desirable alternatives to auto dominated areas. Monthly carfree parties is a good start and relatively harmless for auto’s considering the alternatives they have.

BURR
Guest
BURR

I say party down!

spaz
Guest
spaz

“They just kept dancing, with no respect for the law!”

Holy crap, that is rich.

I live in the 'hood
Guest
I live in the 'hood

I realize this is the bikeportland site, but come on, how can a couple of drunk white guys help you make the case for diverting traffic onto other streets?
Were the drunk guys on bikes or what? Give it a rest.
Be the change you want!

Scott
Guest

If any of you don’t want last night to be the direction Last Thursday takes, you MUST contact the mayor and commissioner’s offices. Call them. E-mail them. Whatever and whoever you can. Call the liquor control commission. Call the police and express your support. Do what you can to help get this situation under control.

I live here. Last night was a mess. There were two primary locations of concern that are getting mixed up. Between NE 18th and NE 19th the police were met with thrown bottles and “F-ING PIGS!!!!” being screamed by lots of very drunk ‘kids’ (20-25 year olds).

Last Thursday is soon going to be out of control if last night was an indication. We saw nearly as much alcohol flowing down that street as I ever saw in my years in New Orleans. Vomit, beer bottles and cans, and urine became the fun artsy thing last night. We spoke to several officers and to several drunks. The drunks were, well, idiots, usually indie kids blasting “f-ing PIGS!”. The officers were clearly frustrated. They pulled officers in from all over the city to be ready to deal with what was close to turning into a riot – officers that should have been elsewhere.

We spoke at length with neighbors and business owners near our home. All expressed distress at what’s happening. More than a few had been scared by the behavior they saw last night. Think about that. This fun festival has some people scared. If you think they’re over reacting, you didn’t see what we saw. The malcontents didn’t save all their venom for the police. I was told to fuck off more than a few times last night. Coming out to find people pissing in your yard and tossing beer cans and bottles in to your bushes and on your car, screaming obscenities at anyone who dares tell them to move off isn’t what anyone should have to tolerate.

I love this neighborhood. I love what Last Thursday is and can be. But the alcohol has to go. If last night is repeated, the vendors will leave, the businesses will close early, and we’ll be left with nothing more than a drunken mess. Vendors are already packing up early. Business owners are already starting to shut their doors earlier. When a walk down the street reveals nothing but drunk faces, something has gone wrong.

p.s. the police I met last night did an astounding job of maintaining their composure.

felix
Guest

Quick! Someone call whine one one! We need a wahmbulance!

sanita
Guest
sanita

i am usually stuck working the disaster of public, often underage, amateur drunk fest -better known as last thursday… and it comes as no surprise that this has happened. it was only a matter of time…. (i’m sorry, i know that many love that day of the month yet i equate to the worst day of my period.)

you combine all the ingredients stated above and add a few hundred people and dogs and bikes and cars…… what a mess. –block the street off….put more cops on foot or bike keeping an eye on the drunk children. blech!

missing six blocks
Guest
missing six blocks

From the “correction” of 18th to 24th it’s clear Mr. Maus is vaguely aware of the problems with the official spin here, but in fact a real correction would have to acknowledge that the dancing at 24th and fight at 18th had nothing to with each other.

James
Guest
James

When I lived in Austin, Texas, the city would close 6th Street, a major downtown route, every weekend to allow for the crowds bar-hopping, clubbing, and just generally hanging out. I don’t drink or go to clubs, but I would often join the crowds. There were street performers, artists, and probably a police presence, though I never noticed it. While it sounds like irresponsible alcohol consumption and juvenile behavior might be a barrier to creating a similar arrangement for Last Thursday, the regular closure of 6th Street is Austin is undoubtedly a success, and if they can do it in Texas we should be able to pull it off here.

what residents think
Guest
what residents think

Some posts have appropriately brought up the subject of the attitudes of residents and business owners towards Last Thursday. A Portland State researcher published a paper entitled Reassessing Gentrification based on surveys of NE residents. It provides an interesting perspective on gentrification and Last Thursday. The abstract to the report states:

“The results suggest that the majority of residents—including owners and renters, Whites and minorities, newcomers and longtime residents, those college educated and not—like how their neighborhood has changed and think it will improve even more in the future. However, regression analysis reveals that renters and longtime Black residents are less likely to view these changes positively.”

Just a reminder that what may seem like an obvious solution to one person might not be true for someone else. Someone else might see a totally different problem.

edjukator
Guest
edjukator

To Scott #23 – I can see some Alberta businesses closing early on Last Thursdays – but I wouldn’t imagine food and alcohol establishments would decided to reject the revenue.

About trying to stop folks from drinking in mass – you would have to tell the food/alcohol places to stop serving too… Which is probably not going to happen.

About moving toward a police state on last Thursdays – that would probably cause mass protests, which might not look that different from what you had before.

Perhaps you should consider this growing pains – you now have yuppies and hipsters who have displaced your dealers and homies (really only as far as Killingsworth though). As the prices rise, you’ll see less and less hipsters, and just more yuppies.

It’s your middle class revolution – revolutions can take time to fully oust the undesirables. But you’ll probably get a white middle class, safe place soon.

If this sounds like false dichotomies and hyperbole (and perhaps a complaint without an answer) – it may be because I don’t appreciate the movement toward a heavy policing, anymore than I appreciate people pissing on my lawn, and I wanted to respond to your comment 🙂

Scott
Guest

I don’t want to see heavy policing. I want to see the merchants take some responsibility for their choices. Unfortunately, with places like the Nest, we probably won’t see that. The owner of the Nest told me a few months back in not so many words, “I wouldn’t want this place in my neighborhood.” When that’s the attitude of those serving booze in this neighborhood, those of us that actually live here don’t have any choice but to go to the city and police. It’s very frustrating.

But, yes, much of this is growing pains.

zilfondel
Guest
zilfondel

This is exactly why there are public plazas in Europe… gives people a plac to congregate and do crazy things!

I am very much in favor of closing streets down for the weekend… Alberta, parts of Clinton street, NW 13th is already closed during 1st thursday, right? NW 21st late at night should probably be closed during the summer or could be for events…

Apprently some people believe that only cars will allow a ‘vibrant urban environment.’ Complete bunk, although Eugene’s pedestrian mall – which was a total failure – certainly helps that theory out.

John Wilmot
Guest

Well, here we go again! This is a debate that’s going to rage all summer, I bet.

I’ve got to say this is a real bummer, because lets face it folks, this is the beginning of the end of Last Thursday as we know it. It’s really unfortunate that next month on Last Thursday, the police will (logically) have a stronger and more visible presence, which will inevitably piss people off. And it’s even more unfortunate that every “radical” (aka drunken asshole who’s still mad at his dad) in town will show up too, looking for trouble. Together, they are going to make it much less enjoyable for the rest of us. (Look what they did to Critical Mass. Same thing. Pigs versus the Mass-holes. Ruined it for everybody.)

Unlike so many people here, I strongly disagree with the idea that closing the street is a good idea. First of all, the more “official” the event becomes, the more regulated it will get in general, and the more bland. How would you feel if you had to pass through a staffed entrance with someone checking I.D.s to prevent underage drinking? How would all of those vendors feel if they had to sign up well in advance and pay a fee to sell their wares? Sure, lots of them would be willing, but they would be the most organized (and most generic) of the bunch. We already have that event: It’s called Saturday Market. That’s blocked off with no traffic, and look how much fun it is.

One of the reasons Last Thursday is so entertaining is that it is not an “official” street festival. It’s supposed to be just a series of art openings — in GALLERIES. The street scene just happened on its own, and when it gets more “official” with all the inevitable rules, it will simply not be nearly as interesting or fun.

I can already hear some people suggesting that shutting down the road doesn’t mean the event has to get more regulated, but come on, do you think that the city or Tri-Met or the police are just going to say “Here you go. Here’s what you want. Naw, we don’t need anything in return; we’ll just go away and leave you alone. You guys have fun!” No way. Dream on. There will be strings attached and rules to follow. Why would Last Thursaday be the exception?

The second reason the street should not be closed is that it would actually have the oppsite effect that most people want. It will become LESS interesting. Some folks seem to imagine… what? wide open spaces and room to ride a bike too? …all while having people and vendors close enough at hand to keep things stimulating? There are only so many vendors and people who show up to Last Thursday, and beleive it or not, they would not be able to fill the street. (The sidewalks are narrow strips and both sides together MIGHT add up to one street lane. Alberta has FOUR lanes.) The whole thing would be much more diffuse, and while that might leave lots of room for the street “art” (which nobody goes there to see, admit it), it wont be very good for people watching (which IS why people go). Sure, you might get your wide open space, but why would you want it? It will be BORING.

Don’t believe me? Anyone who is familiar with the popular “pedestrain mall” concept from the seventies knows what a dismal failure they were. People don’t actually WANT room to spread out and stroll and be free from corwds. People are ATTRACTED to crowds, even if they profess to hate them. Closing Alberta to cars would actually ruin the appeal of the event for lots of regular visitors, even though they might think the opposite.

In any case, I imagine that any street closure will be a long time in coming. In the mean time, we have to deal with the mess that a bunch of brats and drunks have created, which is only worstened by the attitude of tolerance for them that is so rampant among Portland’s “anti-establishment” knee-jerk reaction crowd.

Cops are SUPPOSED to break up drunken brawls. Get over it. And please don’t throw stuff at them, because that just means they’ll be back in higher numbers and with lower tolerance the next time around. If you give a crap about Last Thursday, get rid of the “radical” jerks who ruin it for the rest of us. The car drivers are not really hurting anybody; so give your pet peeve a rest just this once, okay?

Scott
Guest

I’ve spoken with various people in City government. The city is looking hard at how they can prevent what happened at this most recent “Last Thursday” from happening again. Among other thiings, they will be firmly reminding the various businesses what they can and can’t do (e.g. serving alcohol to clearly intoxicated people). They will also be educating neighbors and business owners about what they can do when they see people doing unacceptable things (e.g. a business owner is fully in their rights to kick a vendor off the sidewalk in front of their store).

Nature Boy
Guest
Nature Boy

I know what most don’t as to the “jumping on cars” line that led to the “near riot”. After the DJ called off the dance party, the crowd began to disperse, with responsible less enebriated citizens cleaning the street of bottles and trash, so that traffic could resume safely down the street. The 72 bus line service to Swan Island returned to it’s route on Alberta.
The driver was nice and waved as he took his time while folks got out of his way, which went over well with many of the crowd, who patted on the bus windows as a sign of appretiation. The next vehicle behind the bus was a SUV jeep/truck thing that some of the crowd rocked and jumped on. The driver sped around the corner with a party goer clinging to the roof, north on 24th, doing about 50mph.
I sped down the street on my bike ready to put my first aid skills tothe test, only to find the driver and roof rider pulled over at the end of the block having a jolly good time. They were friends, the people shaking his car were friends, and that he did this sort of crazy shit all the time. Upon returningto the lingering crowd of about 60-70 people one minute later, I was informed that the police were all geared up and ready to roll in, which they did a minute later, coming from the west turning south on twenty fourth, parking, and twelve riot cops step out of three cars, and start an approach on the 35-45 lingerers who were just leaving.
At this time my account of the situation must draw to a close because I was on my way home(riot cops=less fun) and pedaled for home going north on 24th with my accomplice in fun to find three more squadcars full on the next corner. We informed them that the party was over, that they missed all the fun, and that we hoped they enjoyed the free over time, followed by shifting into warp pedal, because they looked pretty upset.

some talking points that I see in this are:

1. the cops were already on the way but became sidetracked with a fight.

2. that they mishandled the situation severely,enough to get bottles thrown at them by random passersby. Perhaps they could have used words like “stop” or “freeze,Police” or ” break it up” to deescolate the fight.

3. don’t pull guns on a crowd of Portlanders, we generally do not like cops.

4. going 50 on a street filled with people and a guy on your roof is dangerous, and could have been averted simply by closing the steet to through traffic, which would allow space for arists and other venders to set up market in the street.

5.move the 72 to killingsworth permanently, it’s where us working class bus riders live. If you can afford to shop on Alberta, chances are your not taking the bus.

6.F*** corporate “news” and the police being such busom buddies, I saw a camera truck roll in by the party an hour before the police showed up. Who called the “news” in, did an officer get some of that informant money for leaking police operations to the “media”?

7. more people moving about freely means that they can get to what they want to buy faster. Drinking is proven to lower one’s decision making and can lead to more impulse buying, at the benefit of local business

8.F*** P.R. officer Brian Shmautz,for calling us all a bunch of anarchists. Maybe if the police took their time picking the weeds from their flowers, he wouldn’t have to tell so many fibs.

Scott
Guest

The news crew arrived prior to the police probably for the simple reason that Last Thursday was already a story. This city is otherwise so mellow, that an event like this is enough to warrant coverage.

barry
Guest
barry

LT is an amazing event so always expect some kind of wierdness but always remind the police verbally [if your there]to \”put down your guns\” because for all my years of attending LT [3] never until a month ago were guns drawn for such a silly altercation at the nest,which really implies that certain people[\”cops\” for the hearing impaired] have become fed up being powerless over something that gets more attention,and face it;this requires \”FUN\”. The info is still sketchy about the incident,but if i see a taser on the ground im certainly not going to pick it up no matter WHO says its his/hers and neither should you. That spoken its liberating to finally be in control at the fair and NOT the menacing brew in blue with their [WHAT?]rifles?!.

I even heard a while ago that there was talk in 2005 about extending the fair further if things stayed balanced and closing the street off for the event too! Now,wouldn\’t that speak more about whats REALLY happening at the fair as opposed to \”suggestions\” of minor negative happenings?! Aren\’t they all outnumbered anyway on every positive level? Is that whats scaring the brew?

lovely lovely lovely event. The pictures say it all not the corposound. Keep your channel detuned and your vision spared.