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Sean thought he’d want to come back home after 5 days in Portland for a journalism convention, but he was wrong.  I’m just kidding I love CT.  But I had so much fun in Oregon that I wish it lasted a lot longer.  I had a blast while I was out there, and got to know some really great people.  The trip was a 50/50 mix between boring but useful lectures and intensely fun nights spent bar-hopping around America’s self-proclaimed Beer Capital.  Here’s a video and a recap of how the trip went down:

  • Thursday – Everyone was still exhausted from the previous day’s traveling, so I spent the morning by myself roaming around downtown looking for things I might want to check out during my time there.  I had wanted to update my site so I stopped in at a Starbucks, but soon found out that free-wifi is hard to come across in the city of Portland.  I stopped in a few more locations, hoping I’d be able to avoid wasting time sitting in the hotel, but had no luck.  By the time I got back people were finally up so I met up with everyone and we went out for a walk.  A few people had suggested we check out Powell’s Bookstore on 10th and Burnside so we made our way down there.  I wasn’t in much of a shopping mood so I avoided exploring the city-block sized bookstore with the intention of coming back another day.  From there we stopped in Henry’s Tavern for lunch, where I had the best cheeseburger I’ve ever had in my life.  The waitress was somewhat of a bitch, and gave Patty and Eliza a hard time for having the old version of the CT license.   With 100 beers on tap, it was hard to avoid having a few before we left.  Thus began a night of insanity.
  • Friday – We all decided that we’d dedicate the day to attending our required 3 workshops and one of  the keynote addresses.  The first workshop I attended was called "Getting the most out of your on-line newspaper".  It was run by the guys at College Publisher, who were absolutely terrible at giving presentations.  It was highly uninformative and a complete waste of time.   The next workshop focused on newspaper design – not exactly my area because web-based design works very differently.  But I still got a few good pointers out of it.  We all gathered for lunch and had a quick meeting with our adviser to discuss whether or not we should run a controversial story.  I had strong opinions on the matter but decided to keep my mouth shut due to my lack of journalistic credentials. 
  • Friday Afternoon/Night – Took it easy for a while following the convention.  Stopped down for a swim in the pool and then watched the movie Just Friends with Patty.  At night we all gathered and ate dinner at a place called Lotus  and then went out to a bar/club named Barracuda (a.k.a. "Barcelona").  I’d say it was the best night of the week.
  • Saturday – Went on my walk up to Washington Park and the Japanese Garden in the AM and then went with the group back to Powell’s Books.   I spent a good hour navigating through the countless rooms in this place.  I heard it’s the largest non-chain bookstore in world – but I don’t know that for certain.  Either way, the place is massive and if you have any interest in books it’s a must-see. We were all still worn-out from the night before, so we called it an early day and went back to the hotel to relax, encountering a few local-nut jobs on the way.  At night we went to Romano’s Macaroni Grill for our last dinner of the trip. 
  • Sunday – Left the hotel at 4:30 AM, ate lunch in Chicago around 2, made it back to Hartford at 6:45, and then made it home around 8:30.

I loved Portland.  I never made it to Mt. Hood or the Oregon Coast like I had hoped because of the time restrictions, but I found more then enough within the city limits to keep me satisfied.  Now that I’ve gotten a taste I know I’ll be going back at some point in the future to see the rest.  Check out the ACP National Newspaper Convention in Portland album for more pics.

Portland Portland Portland

Written by Sean Henri