Wordstock recap & a visit to E Burnside

Dymaxicon writers

All of Dymaxicon’s writers were there: from left to right, Chris, Hillary, me, Larry, Nancy and Lilly. Over the course of two days, we got to know one another and it began to feel like a family.

the Dymaxicon booth at Wordstock

By backing up a little bit, you can see our booth, with all of our books on display. With seven stages all going at once, featuring readings, panel discussions and conversations, plus an exhibit hall full of booths, no two people attending Wordstock were apt to have the same experience. Portland is a very bookish place, so there were plenty of local writers. More surprising was the number of big names like Pulitzer winners Isabel Wilkerson and Jennifer Egan and best selling author of The English Patient Michael Ondaatje. Lesser luminaries and stars of the future rubbed elbows with students, publishers…basically anyone engaging in a love affair with words. Saturday evening, we all trooped over to the Aladdin Theater to watch the Live Wire radio show being taped. My favorite part of their manifesto reads: “We believe that ‘funny’ and ‘culturally relevant’ aren’t mutually exclusive.” They put that into practice by incorporating many of Wordstock’s authors into a highly entertaining evening. The shows, taped in Portland, can be heard on public broadcasting stations around the country.

the Jupiter Hotel

Not far from the convention center, on East Burnside, is the Jupiter Hotel. A funky old motel from the ’50’s has been remodeled into a stylish place to lay your head, or, in our case, to gather to rehash the weekend, tipple and tell stories in the bar/restaurant, the Doug Fir.

Doug Fir outdoor dining

I had been scoping out E Burnside the week before, so when the question “where shall we go after?” arose, I actually had an answer. It was late, and a bit rainy to enjoy the wonderful outdoor space, but gathering around the fireplace in the lounge served us well. Roll-around tables and seating could be reconfigured to our liking. Now, since this is purported to be more of a garden-centric blog, I will leave the word stuff and take you back a week to my prowl around Burnside.

Burnside swale

Formerly a down-at-the-heels area, considerable work has gone into upgrading. These bioswales occupy several corners between traffic and pedestrians.

Burnside drain dome

I especially like the metal domes protecting the drains.

shops on Burnside

Formerly derelict buildings have been reclaimed to house little boutiques, vintage resale, galleries and restaurants.

another block of shops

…and in the next block, more of the same. Across the street from these is the Jupiter.

bicycle shop mural

I went around the block to get headed in the right direction and came across this bicycle shop with personality.

KBOO mural

In the next block, this radio station was not to be outdone.

outdoor dining

I parked the car to get pictures of the murals, and that was when I spied the back alley of the Jupiter, where guests can enjoy bamboo-lined patios.

umbrellas out back

Or lunch on a fine day, far from the traffic and noise of busy streets.

5 thoughts on “Wordstock recap & a visit to E Burnside

  1. What a happy group! So what did it feel like to be a REAL author among so many just like yourself? Did you take in any readings? Did you buy any books? I know it’s a garden blog but inquiring minds want to know. 🙂 I love those murals! What a fun place. Those metal domes are very cool. I would have been tempted to grab them. But I would have resisted. I think. 🙂 I love the bamboo surrounding the motel’s patios. And look at that sunshine!!

  2. What a fun weekend you must have had! Thanks for going “off-topic” a bit and sharing a recap (I think we would all had been very upset had you not!).

    I do love the Jupiter and the Doug Fir. Did you attend the art fair they had there the first couple of years they were open? Each artist/gallery got a room and the artwork was displayed throughout. It was fun…and great people watching!

  3. Grace~My brain was practically exploding by Sunday night, what with all the input. Readings were great, but panels and Q & A were even better. Now I have a cold, but I suspect it is my body’s trick so I can lie on the couch and read up the books I brought home with me.

    Loree~Thanks! I would hate to become a slave to my blog’s purported subject matter.

    I never did make it to those art fairs, but they seem to have reflected the spirit of the place.

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