E

ven with all that’s happened over the past few months on top of the past two years, it’s hard not to feel hopeful in Portland in spring. All over town there is budding and blooming, trees are pushing out fresh canopies, tulip neons are popping in neighborhood yards, and the lengthening days remind us that summer will come again. This is the perennial Portland promise, writ large in glimpses of Mount Hood against a blue backdrop, in reddening rhubarb and magnolia buds. 

As we figure out how and when this winter—the actual and, yes, the metaphorical one–can be put behind us, we at Portland Monthly are leaning into this season of hope. True, the pandemic has taught us never to claim victory—and there’s so much of the recent darkness that will stay with us, regardless of what future seasons hold—but it has also taught us to value every splash of sun on our eyelids, every crisp asparagus bite, every sudden wash of sweet jasmine scent. With that in mind, we’re looking around our city and finding everywhere signs of life: Portland’s heart beats on, all the slings and
arrows notwithstanding, and we are all a part of its pulse. 

People are still making their homes here, according to the many real estate agents we spoke to. And it’s not difficult to see why. In our city’s backyard, the spectacular Columbia River Gorge carves a perfect playground, with blazing views, tiny but mighty stalwarts, and mall-beating retail delights. Back in Portland, human connection is front and center as we celebrate a new way forward for the once stuffy, then slapdash midday meal. We are planning our hikes and unmuting art and finding just the right locally made, eco-friendly shoes in which to walk back out into the world. 

And this steady march is soundtracked by the 50 albums that define our state, a deep dive into the history of music here, from the early 20th century to the present day. 

Which brings us back to the now. We’re here. There’s a stretch in the evening. It’s spring. Let’s put that in our step again. 

Fiona McCann
Editor in chief

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