Local Lounge @ 3536 NE MLK: Mediterranean goodness.

The Platinum Posse and I dropped into Local for beer & snacks the other day. This spot hosted, briefly, Chances Bar, and before that the Kik’nbaque Lounge, and before that, Chances Bar again. Apparently all four (three) of these bars have had the same owner, but I was so grateful for good snacks and beer that I decided not to press the issue, and instead we spent our time watching the Boulevard.

There was lots of foot traffic out and about, some people strolling on the boulevard; numerous others were heading to the liquor store next door. We even saw seom biker-types, presumably Gypsy Jokers, wander across the street for some Subway sandwiches.

When I was outside for a bit, I watched two people in a strange verbal altercation of sorts. They had passed one another on the sidewalk, one smiling and the other frowning, and the smiler called out the frowner for not being friendly. He hassled the frowner for a bit of time while I watched, then fessed up that he was kidding; with a grin and a wave to the surprised frowner, he wandered away.

As dinner time came closer, Local began to pick up a nice crowd, a different one than I’ve usually seen in this bar throughout its different incarnations. In the past, it seems to have served as a younger crowd/ “punk” bar, a sports bar, a bar primarily visited by African-Americans…. all in the last couple of years.

The crowd last week was white, reasonably upscale, and definitely queer. It’s an interesting thing to observe, that one place on the boulevard can serve so many different clienteles in such a short timeframe. It’s also a reflection of the different kinds of folks who live in Albina.

The food was good. We were happy.

from the Oregon Advance Times, April 5, 1968

City of Portland, Oregon

Press Release

FROM: Mayor Terry D. Scrunk

TO: Media

SUBJECT: Death of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The people of Portland join in expressing to Mrs. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the doctor’s family and associates deepest sympathy and serious concern for the tragedy which struck down this outstanding American leader at a time when the nation needed him most. We are gravely concerned with the viciousness of this dastardly act, and hope and pray that the individual or individuals responsible will be speedily apprehended and tried for this crime.

I have directed that the flags on city public buildings be flown at half staff through Sunday.

I call upon all churches in the Portland metropolitan area to observe in their Sunday services a memorial service to this leader, and to pray for responsible citizens across America to pick up the principles for which Dr. Martin Luther King gave his life, and to move forward in a rapid and orderly manner to bring about understanding and justice for all of our citizens, regardless of race, creed or color. The fine progress and advancement brought about by Dr. Martin Luther King and his associates must not be lost by additional acts of violence. The finest memorial to the good works of Dr. King will be a new awakening of all the American people to the fact that we have much work to do and we can and will accomplish these objectives through peaceful means by a concerned America.

Portland Development Commission advertisement in the Observer

This week’s Portland Observer, released yesterday, contains a full-page ad from the Portland Development Commission. Interspersed with photos of buildings along the Boulevard and a photograph of Rev. King himself, is text urging readers to “support local merchants” since “local restaurants and store-owners are the backbone of a healthy economy”.

Further text reads:

“The Portland Development Commission believes that economic opportunity should be shared throughout the community. PDC is committed to working with its partners to increase minority home ownership, to create opportunities for minority-owned, women-owned, and emerging small businesses, and to value employee diversity.”

Photos on the page include Vanport Square, the Old Town Pizza delivery bicycle, Hankins Hardware, Horn of Africa, Bridges Café, and the building that houses the Eliot E-Mat Café.