Glenda Goldwater (right) with Barley T. Hop, the Hillsboro Hops mascot

Image: Thomas Teal

In an aggressively casual city like Portland, Glenda Goldwater is unmissable. The 83-year-old bon vivant, with her halo of white curls, oversize glasses, and exquisite style, is a fixture at arts events across the city. Among her regular haunts: First Wednesday (yes, Wednesday) gallery walks in the Pearl District. Wednesdays are aimed at collectors, but no stress, Goldwater says: “They’re not checking your ID or how much you intend to spend.” Plus? “Not quite the same mob scene as First Thursdays.”

Goldwater’s own inner Southeast apartment has scarce space for additional art. But if you’ve got voids to fill, Goldwater recommends the Portland Art Museum’s Rental Sales Gallery, where she volunteers twice a month. Visitors can shop for original art by Oregon and Washington artists—or, if you’re a museum member, rent a piece for three to six months. As for Goldwater? “I don’t rent. I buy,” she says. “I either want it or I don’t.” Galleries she likes for such splurges? Froelick, Augen, and Elizabeth Leach in the Pearl. “They’re just very friendly. They’re willing to talk to you.”

Another staple on her calendar: Hillsboro Hops baseball games. “I love baseball,” she says. “It’s not like football where people get their brains knocked out. It’s slower, easier to understand.” (For the record, she supports Portland’s Major League Baseball dreams. And she’s still bitter about Timbers owner Merritt Paulson’s decision to put up the Triple-A Portland Beavers for sale in 2010 so the soccer team could take over what’s now Providence Park. “I am not a fan of soccer, no,” she says.)

Getting to Hillsboro for those minor league games requires an hour-long MAX ride, plus a shuttle to Ron Tonkin Field. “Every minute of that is worth it,” Goldwater says. She occasionally hauls out to Lents to see the amateur Portland Pickles, but that’s a tougher sell. “The only problem with the Pickles,” she says, “is that they don’t serve wine.”

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