POL Government Elected Officials Commissioner Nick Fish News Blog Archive Blog

Summer art camps

Is your child looking for something fun to do this summer?


Enroll him or her in one of the many arts camps offered by organizations around our community.  From dance classes with BodyVox to filmmaking at the Hollywood Theatre, there is something for everyone.  The Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) has pulled together a list of options. 


RACC believes that art is pivotal for children, and supports local programs - like these summer camps - that provide enriching arts education in our community.  


Register early to ensure your child’s spot.  For more information, visit RACC’s website.

April 14, 2014

Friday Roundup

April 11, 2014

Sprinkle into spring

The birds are chirping, the sun is shining, and the flowers are blooming - spring is here!  And it’s the perfect time to look over and revamp your sprinkler system. 


Sprinkler systems don’t always fare well in winter.  Pipes can crack, leading to costly leaks, and broken sprinkler heads can waste water – and money.  The Portland Water Bureau has four simple tips to conserve water this spring and summer:

  • Inspect your systems; check for any clogged, broken or missing sprinkler heads 
  • Check that sprinklers heads are properly attached to hoses, and while you’re at it, check hoses for leaks
  • Make sure that only your yard and plants gets watered – not the driveway or sidewalk
  • Update your system’s schedule with the season, so water isn’t needlessly wasted

For more tips and resources to conserve water for your yards, visit the Portland Water Bureau Efficiency Program’s website.

April 10, 2014

Keep water meters clear of debris and guard dogs

Meter readers from the Portland Water Bureau (PWB) read your water meter to learn how much water your household consumes. 


Meters that are obstructed by objects – such as cars, trash cans, or even landscape - prevents meter readers from reading your meters.  The first time your meter is inaccessible, you will receive a friendly reminder in the mail.  By keeping your box clear, you can avoid unnecessary charges. 


The Portland Water Bureau offers tips to for easy access to your water meter:

  • Trim bushes and grass that cover your meter
  • Reduce plants on the path to your meter
  • Remove all branches hanging six feet or lower, above the meter
  • Let PWB know if you have a guard dog!

Check out PWB's website for more information and resources. 

April 9, 2014

Bringing salmon back to Crystal Springs Creek

The Crystal Springs Creek Restoration Project has been a success!


The Bureau of Environmental Services (BES), along with Reed College, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Portland Parks & Rec have worked together - using green infrastructure - to improve Crystal Springs Creek’s water quality.  It is one of Portland’s few free-flowing cold water streams without migratory barriers for salmon, and BES intends to keep it that way.


By replacing old culverts and planting native plants, over a third of the habitat has been restored.  Water temperatures have also decreased nearly 5 degrees Fahrenheit, making an ideal environment for salmon to recover and migrate. 


By using green infrastructure, BES reduces flooding and erosion, filters pollutants, provides lush habitats, and increases neighborhood green spaces for healthier watersheds throughout our city.  Green infrastructure protects our water quality, increases public health, and does wonders for our environment. 


OPB's Oregon Field Guide program recently highlighted the Crystal Springs Restoration. Watch the video or visit BES's website to learn more about the project. 

April 8, 2014

Venture Portland supports neighborhood businesses

Last week, Venture Portland awarded $37,000 in grants to our neighborhood business districts for 19 spring and summer projects. The projects range from street fairs and festivals to website support and walking maps. Private businesses matched Venture Portland’s grants 5-to-1, bringing the total investments to more than $200,000! 


Some of the grant-funded projects are geared towards the highly anticipated Major League Soccer All Star Game this August. The special projects and events will give our local businesses the opportunity to show the world the very best of Portland.


Our neighborhood small businesses are the backbone of our community – and of our local economy. Nick is proud to be Council Liaison to Venture Portland, an organization focused on investing in the smart, strategic growth of our neighborhood business districts.


Check out Venture Portland’s Spring/Summer 2014 Grants list for detailed information on all of the awards. 


April 7, 2014

Charles Jordan, 1937 - 2014

This morning, we lost a great leader and urban pioneer: Charles Jordan.


Charles was one of my heroes. A highlight of my public service was honoring Charles at the dedication of the Charles Jordan Community Center in the Portsmouth neighborhood in 2012.


Charles was a trail blazer. His service to Portland dates back to 1974, when he was appointed and later elected as our first African American City Commissioner.


In 1989, he was named Director of Portland Parks & Recreation. Under his leadership, Parks’ budget increased by more than $35 million – and paved the way to the outstanding parks and recreation facilities we enjoy today.


Charles was passionate about the families and children we serve. He was fond of reminding his audiences that “parks are more than just fun and games.” That through sports and activities young people learn the life lessons that translate into productive lives.


Charles leaves behind a beautiful legacy. And his son Dion continues the family tradition by serving on the Parks Board.


My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. On this sad day for the Parks family, we give thanks for the life and legacy of Charles Jordan.






Former City Commissioner Charles Jordan Dies at 77

Dave Blanchard, OPB News


Charles Jordan, former Portland city commissioner and parks director, has died at 77

Anna Griffin in The Oregonian


Groundbreaking Parks Director Charles Jordan Dies 1937 - 2014

The Skanner News


Charles Jordan, former Portland city commissioner and parks visionary, passes away at 77

Andy Giegerich in the Portland Business Journal

April 4, 2014

Friday Roundup

April 4, 2014

Portland City Hall gets colorful with PHAME

Portland City Hall is pleased to kick off the PHAME @ 30 Art Show!


PHAME is a local nonprofit which gives individuals with developmental disabilities the opportunity to lead full, creative lives through arts education and performance. PHAME offers an array of arts classes, from visual arts and creative writing to musical theory and acting.  


In celebration of their 30th Anniversary, PHAME is presenting a full season of art shows and performances around our community.   PHAME begins its celebrations with two arts shows – and we are pleased to welcome one of their shows to Portland City Hall!  


The City Hall art show opens April 7, and will include abstract paintings, self-portraits, drawings, costume designs, and unique pieces from the art forms known as “fluffilism” and “smoosh mandala” – all created by PHAME’s talented artists.  


PHAME’s second show also opens April 7 at Studio 3 @ Zoomtopia. 


Learn more about PHAME, their arts programs, and their 30th anniversary shows on their website.     



April 7 – 11, 9 am – 5 pm

City Hall Atrium

1221 S.W. 4th Ave.

April 3, 2014

Visit the Pearl District, for the love of art

Take a stroll in the heart of downtown Portland, and explore and appreciate our local art scene.

The Pearl District Business District is hosting its monthly First Thursday event tomorrow! First Thursday is an evening of arts celebration across the Pearl.  Free and open to public, this month’s event showcases 18 art galleries with new exhibits.  Many galleries provide food, wine, and music, and the artists are often available to discuss their work. 


First Thursday initially started 20 years ago as a gathering among art dealers and collectors.  Today, over ten thousand people enjoy the event each month. The event serves as a great connection for two of Nick’s top priorities – supporting our neighborhood small businesses, and creating a vibrant arts and culture community in Portland.


Join Venture Portland and the Pearl District Business District tomorrow night from 6 - 9 pm.  Check out the Pearl's official website for First Thursday details.

April 2, 2014

A Decade of Northwest Dance


This morning, Nick was pleased to read a Proclamation celebrating Northwest Dance Project’s 10 year anniversary.


Companies like Northwest Dance Project help raise Portland’s profile as a world-class arts destination. They also provide opportunities to grow our community’s next generation of dancers and arts lovers.


To keep the celebration going, Northwest Dance Project is presenting “Director’s Choice” this weekend. Watch these international award-winning dancers the Newmark Theatre this Thursday through Saturday.


Thursday’s opening night show will also be live-broadcast at sunset on the side of Portland’s Jive Building at SW 10th & Stark.


Congratulations to Artistic Director Sarah Slipper, Executive Director Scott Lewis, and the amazing dancers in the company for reaching this milestone!


For more information and to purchase tickets, visit Northwest Dance Project’s website.


Director’s Choice

April 3, 4, 5 at 7:30 pm

Newmark Theatre

111 SW Broadway


Northwest Dance Project Proclamation


April 2, 2014

Traversing Portland, Meter Reader style

Ever wonder how the City records how much water you’re using?

Twelve Portland Water Bureau meter readers are out in the community each day, ensuring our public water system is running smoothly. Readers work Monday through Friday, through good weather and bad, to read meters across the city.  On an average day, a meter-reader reads 500 meters and walks seven miles!  In January alone, our 12 readers read 65,000 meters in Portland. 

By using small handheld computers, meter readers calculate the amount of water used in homes and businesses.  The handheld computers also compare your water usage from the same time last year.  If water usage has increased, our meters will leave a courtesy notice with common reasons for high water usage – such as additional people living in the home and using water, or possible underground leaks. Noticing changes in water use and catching leaks early can help save you money!

Next time you see a meter reader, say hi! They are an essential part the Water Bureau.  Visit the Water Bureau’s website to learn more about meter readers and other public services.

April 1, 2014

Celebrating 10 years of Northwest Dance Project

For the last 10 years, Northwest Dance Project has presented unique, bold, and stirring dance performances for the Portland community.  


As Arts Commissioner (and a huge fan of dance), Nick is pleased that Northwest Dance Project calls Portland home. To honor Northwest Dance’s 10-year anniversary, Nick will present a Mayoral Proclamation naming April 2, 2014 as a day of recognition for the dance company.


To celebrate their decade of dance, Northwest Dance Project is presenting “Director’s Choice” – their biggest dance show yet! Inspired by poetry, the shaker religion, outside temptations, and passionate relationships, the Director’s Choice performances are all original works that include visually stunning ballet and modern dance. 


Watch these international award-winning dance performances at the Newmark Theatre, April 3-5. 


The April 3 opening night show will also be live-broadcast at sunset on the side of Portland’s Jive Building at SW 10th & Stark. 


For more information and to purchase tickets, visit Northwest Dance Project’s website.


April 3, 4, 5 at 7:30 pm

Newmark Theatre

111 SW Broadway

March 31, 2014

Honoring Portland’s history through art

Portland will soon be home to an extensive art installation dedicated to our community’s rich history of North Williams Avenue. 


The Committee to Honor the History of Williams Avenue is seeking artists and/or art-teams interested in developing historical artwork in the historically African American neighborhood.  The project will honor the experiences, stories, and complex history of those who call the North Portland neighborhood home – from the early 20th century to present day. 


With an $80,000 budget, artists or teams will work closely with the Committee to  bring cultural awareness through public art. The new artwork will reach from NE Broadway to NE Killingsworth St. along Williams Avenue.  


The Honoring History project is funded by the Portland Bureau of Transportation, and administered by the Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC).  Nick is proud to be Council liaison to RACC, an organization dedicated to providing arts services to underserved populations in Portland and throughout the region. 


The application deadline for the Honoring History Project is Friday, May 16, at 5 pm.  Visit RACC’s website for information on how to apply.

Photo courtesy of the Regional Arts & Culture Council

March 28, 2014

Friday Roundup

March 28, 2014

Previous Articles | RSS Feed