The silver 1974 Airstream sparkles in the sun. Inside, the simplicity of the décor—sleek Douglas fir flooring, with wood locally sourced from Aurora, Oregon, white vinyl cushions to match the walls, and turquoise throw pillows—makes the small interior seem much larger than it is. There are two seating areas on either side of the trailer with a bar, refrigerator and two ice wells in the middle section.
The vibe is reminiscent of the bohemian tranquility Don Draper finds in Los Angeles in season two of Mad Men. Just like the television series set in the mid-century, the space transports you to a place of timeless cool.
“Yeah, that’s the thing—everyone brings their own nostalgia into the space, so it’s a unique experience every time,” says the trailer’s owner, Shelby Wilson.
“If you can’t tell already, we’re kind of midcentury freaks,” she adds.
This is “Stolen Pony Lounge,” opened to the public in January and available for hire. (Shelby says the cost varies depending on the event and use.) Wilson says the name is inspired by something an unsuspecting child might find at a birthday party. Shelby hauls the Stolen Pony Lounge to wherever it needs to be with the “Brown Beast,” a Ford pickup truck complete with horns between its headlights. When off-duty, it’s stored at a covered RV park near her Parkrose Heights home.
A Bainbridge Island native, Shelby moved to Portland several years ago with experience working weddings and major music festivals. She decided to create her own positive party space by gutting the Airstream trailer she found on Craigslist and turning it into into "thirty-fun feet"—that is, 31 feet—of mobile entertaining.
Wilson was inspired to start the Stolen Pony after noticing the lack of attention paid to ambiance at hospitality events, especially when trailers are seen as just utilitarian space.
Shot of the #stolenponylounge being used as Beck's dressing room last night. Had such a blast at Project Pabst this last weekend-can't wait until next year! ✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨ @pabstpdx @mfnw @project_pabst @beck @pendletonwm . • • • #projectpabst2017 #iggypop #beck#vipdressingroom #vipgreenroom #airstream #airstreamrental #airstreamlounge #mobileeventspace #pdxeventspace #pdxevents
So far, clients have used the space for a variety of occasions, from office meetings and green rooms to photo-shoots and parties. Recently, Stolen Pony hosted the headlining artists of the Pabst Project music festival, Beck and Iggy Pop. Word of mouth, fueled by Instagram, has meant a steady stream of clients, so Wilson recommends booking at least three months ahead.