Portland Opera Announces 2022/23 Season

Portland Opera Announces 2022/23 Season

Portland, OR. Portland Opera’s 2022/23 season will feature the cultural touchstone Carmen. Maya Lahyani (seen above) will make her Portland Opera debut in the title role of Carmen. Also on the schedule, Thumbprint, a new opera inspired by the story of Mukhtar Mai, a trailblazing Pakistani human rights activist; the company’s first production of the iconic and magical Dvořák opera Rusalka; and an exciting one-night-only concert featuring celebrated opera composer and jazz great Terence Blanchard. The season will also include the world premiere of a youth opera inspired by the life and experiences of Beatrice Cannady Morrow for the regional Portland Opera to Go tour, and additional community and educational programming throughout the year.

“It brings us great joy to present the 22/23 season to the city of Portland!” shares Priti Gandhi, Artistic Director. “This year signifies so much for us as a community. As we begin to reconnect with our neighbors, with ourselves – we invite you to come back and reconnect with the power of live opera once again. This is a season that will fill your soul with the thrill of powerful new voices, compelling stories, and brilliant music-making. As we bring beloved classics – as well as debut operas – to our stages, we continue our journey in embracing the many ways this beautiful art form expresses itself.”

Kelly Kaduce, Rusalka, with the water nymphs (Act 3)rin the Minnesota Opera Production of RUSALK

LA Opera’s presentation of Thumbprint, a contemporary opera-theatre work by Kamala Sankaram explores the deep family ties and tribal traditions that empowered Mukhtar Mai to become the first female gang-rape victim in Pakistan to bring her attackers to justice. In lieu of a financial settlement, she requested that a school be constructed for educating girls to help prevent the humiliation of signing their name with only a thumbprint. (Photo Credit: Lawrence K. Ho)

Portrait of musician Terence Blanchard at his home in New Orleans, LA.

The season begins with one of opera’s most loved works—Georges Bizet’s masterpiece Carmen. This grand production, the directorial vision of legendary mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves, will take place at Keller Auditorium November 5, 11, 13m, 2022. Featuring recognizable and melodic gems like the Habanera and the Toreador Song, Bizet’s opera is a true classic. “Portland Opera is excited to present Carmen, an opera that for many people was their first opera, or is their favorite opera,” says Damien Geter, Portland Opera’s Interim Music Director and Artistic Advisor. “The opera abounds with familiar tunes that have crossed into the realm of pop culture. We are so fortunate to be able to bring this timeless classic to Portland under the vision of the one of the world’s most beloved Carmens: Denyce Graves.”

The 2022/23 season continues with Thumbprint, a piece by composer Kamala Sankaram and librettist Susan Yankowitz inspired by the story of Mukhtar Mai—a trailblazing Pakistani human rights activist who is a victim of sanctioned gang rape. “We want to tell human stories that can empower, and lift up women,” shares Sue Dixon, General Director. “Thumbprint does this beautifully when Mukhtar Mai chooses to advocate for her life over the tradition of suicide when dishonor comes to her Pakistani family. Her continued fight for justice for all women, serves as a beacon of hope for those who find themselves in impossible situations.” Portland Opera will present 4 performances of Thumbprint, March 18, 22, 24, 26m, 2023 at the Newmark Theatre.

In April 2023, Portland Opera will present Antonín Dvořák’s Rusalka for the first time in the company’s history. This piece, based on a centuries-old folktale with roots in Slavic mythology, tells the story of a water nymph who falls in love with a prince. “The world of magical creatures and mermaids exists just beyond our realm, waiting in long-ago memories,” shares Priti Gandhi, Artistic Director. “Dvořák’s lush and richly textured soundscape takes this world and transforms it into a musical experience that gently settles into your soul. When the water sprite Rusalka sings her famous “Song to the Moon”, yearning for her human lover, one feels the touch of magic and childhood again.” Portland Opera will present 3 performances of Rusalka April 22, 28, 30m, 2023 at Keller Auditorium.

On May 26, 2023, Portland Opera will welcome jazz great and celebrated opera composer Terence Blanchard to the company for the first time with a special one-night-only concert “Absence: Terence Blanchard featuring the E-Collective and Turtle Island Quartet.” This special event, conducted by Portland Opera’s Interim Music Director and Co-Artistic Advisor Damien Geter, will feature guest soloists soprano Karen Slack, Portland Opera’s co-artistic advisor, and Will Liverman, who was last seen with the company in La Bohème in 2017, as well as the talented musicians of the Portland Opera Orchestra. “What an honor to share the stage with my dear friend the extraordinary Grammy award-winning trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard,” says Karen Slack. “A prolific artist and an American treasure! I am filled with both gratitude and excitement that Portland Opera is presenting him alongside the thrilling E-Collective band, Turtle Island Quartet and the magnificent baritone Will Liverman. This promises to be a night the city of Portland won’t forget!”

During the 2022/23 season, the company will also continue its commitment to education and community engagement, including Portland Opera to Go, a program that travels to schools and communities throughout the region with 50-minute operas. This fall, Portland Opera will share the world premiere of a new opera inspired by the life and history of Beatrice Morrow Cannady—a renowned civil rights advocate and the co-founder of the Portland, Oregon chapter of the NAACP. Created with composer Dave Ragland and librettist Marry McCallum, this new commission is designed for school and family audiences, with curriculum targeted for students in fourth through 9th grades. This production is set to tour schools and communities throughout the state and region. “We know that the community is still struggling with impacts from school closures during the pandemic,” explains Alexis Hamilton, Manager of Education and Community Engagement. “We are hoping to use our operatic superpowers to help our educational partners re-engage with arts learning and live events as we share Beatrice’s story while helping students to understand the future by engaging and empathizing with our past.”“The ability to realize our mission, vision, and values continues to grow in these moments when we share this beautiful art form together,” adds Sue Dixon, General Director, “and that happens not just on stage or in the recital hall, but in classrooms, in community gatherings, in our business practices, at every level.” Throughout the season, Portland Opera will produce a host of community engagement activities and professional development initiatives. Opera a la Cart, Portland Opera’s mobile performance venue that brings live opera performance directly into the community spaces where people gather will be found around town again in 2022, along with pop-up performances that have become part of Portland Opera’s community activities during pandemic closures. The company will welcome a new class of Portland Opera Resident Artists back to the revamped program for an 11-week intensive and will announce a new roster of artists in the coming weeks. In addition to the program for emerging artists, the company recently piloted a new program for BIPOC artists/administrators, named Portland Opera’s Ensemble Leaders Fellowship program. The 2022 Fellowship announcement is forthcoming, along with opportunities for local internships, community partners, and free public performances. To learn more about cultural equity, inclusion, diversity, or strategic planning progress, please visit portlandopera.org.

Here are more details about the season: 

Portland Opera 2022/23 Season Casting

Carmen – Georges BizetNovember 5, 11, 13m, 2022


Keller Auditorium, 222 SW Clay

Sung in French with English captions 

The performance is approximately 3 hours, performed with one intermission. 

In addition to the ticketed performances at Keller Auditorium, digital access will be available for a limited time on Portland Opera Onscreen.  




Georges Bizet


Henri Meilhac & Ludovic Halévy


Maya Lahyani

Don José

Matthew Pearce


Richard Ollarsaba


Ariana Wehr


Darren Drone

El Dancairo

Zachary Lenox



Michael Ellis Ingram

Original Production & Staging

Denyce Graves

Associate Director and Choreographer 

Eric Sean Fogel

Scenery & Properties Designer 

Riccardo Hernandez

Costume Designer 

Oana Botez

Lighting Designers 

Robert Wierzel & Amith Chandrashaker

Set in early 1820s in Seville, Spain. Carmen is a factory worker, free spirit, and the toast of the town. She is brave, beautiful, and independent. She falls in and out of love like “a rebellious bird that no one can tame.” Then one day, in the busy streets outside of the bullfighting ring, her ex violently and tragically rejects her choice to move on.

Known for her legendary portrayal of the title role of Carmen, Denyce Graves makes her directorial debut with this production, which will first be staged by Minnesota Opera in May. Eric Sean Fogel makes his Portland Opera debut as Associate Director and Choreographer, along with conductor Michael Ellis Ingram, who leads the Portland Opera Orchestra and Chorus.

Mezzo-soprano Maya Lahyani, a regular on the Metropolitan Opera stage, makes her Portland Opera debut in the title role of Carmen, a role she has previously sung with San Francisco Opera, Arizona Opera, and Opera Maine. Matthew Pearce, currently a Cafritz Young Artist at Washington National Opera, makes his Portland Opera debut as Don José. The cast also features Richard Ollarsaba as Escamillo, Ariana Wehr as Micaëla, and Darren Drone as Zuniga, all in their company debuts, as well Zachary Lenox, last seen on the Portland Opera stage in the 2021 production of Tosca, as Sciarrone.

Thumbprint – Kamala SankaramMarch 18, 22, 24, 26m, 2023

Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway

Sung in English with English captions 

The performance is approximately ninety minutes, performed without an intermission.  

In addition to the ticketed performances at the Newmark Theatre, digital access will be available for a limited time on Portland Opera Onscreen 


Composed by

Kamala Sankaram

Libretto by

Susan Yankowitz



Maya Kherani


Indira Mahajan




Alok Kumar


Omar Najmi

Annu/Young Girl/Reporter 

Samina Aslam



Maria Badstue


Omer Ben Seadia

Thumbprint is inspired by the story of Mukhtar Mai—a trailblazing Pakistani human rights activist who is a victim of sanctioned gang rape. She defied expectations to take her own life after the attack, deciding to live and seek justice. Her hope: open a village school for girls to learn to read and write, so that they may avoid the humiliation of signing their names with only a thumbprint.


This libretto originates from a series of interviews with Mai, paired with a score that is a dynamic collision of Hindustani and European opera influences. This piece features flute, violin, viola, upright bass, piano, and percussion.

Conductor Maria Badstue, recipient of a prestigious 2019-2021 Taki Alsop Conducting Fellowship, makes her Portland Opera debut conducting Thumbprint. Omer Ben Seadia, whose recent credits include productions at Houston Grand Opera, Canadian Opera Company, and Calgary Opera, makes her debut as stage director.

Soprano Maya Kherani, whose credits include roles with Glyndebourne, Opera San José, and a recent performance locally with the Portland Baroque Orchestra, makes her company debut in the role of Mukhtar Mai. Soprano Indira Mahajan, winner of the Kennedy Center’s Marian Anderson Vocal Award, makes her Portland Opera debut as Mukhtar’s Mother, the Minister, and Reporter. Tenor Alok Kumar, whose recent credits include roles at the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, and Los Angeles Opera, makes his debut as Faiz, Police Office, Reporter, and Villager. Also making their Portland Opera debuts, tenor Omar Najmi sings the roles of Shakur, Abdul, Imam, Reporter, Mastoi, and Villager, and soprano Samina Aslam sings the roles of Annu, Young Girl, and Reporter.

Originally commissioned by Beth Morrison Projects and the Here Center for the Prototype Festival, Thumbprint premiered in 2014 at the Baruch Performing Arts Center.


Mukhtar Mai is still striving for change, justice, and safety. Learn more about The Mukhtar Mai Women’s Organization and her activism at portlandopera.org 



Rusalka – Antonín DvořákApril 22, 28, 30M, 2023

Keller Auditorium, 222 SW Clay Street, Portland

Sung in Czech with English captions. 

The performance is approximately 3 hours, performed with two intermissions.  


In addition to the ticketed performances at Keller Auditorium, digital access will be available for a limited time on Portland Opera Onscreen  

Composed by

Antonín Dvořák

Libretto by

Jaroslav Kvapil based on the fairy tales of Karel Jaromír Erben and Božena  Němcová



Karen Vuong

The Prince

Limmie Pulliam

Vodnik “The Spirit of the Lake”

Andrew Potter


Jill Grove

The Foreign Princess

Othalie Graham



Elias Grandy


Eric Simonson

Scenery and Properties Designer 

Erhard Rom

Costume Designer 

Kärin Kopischke

Projection Designer 

Wendall K. Harrington

Lighting design 

Robert Wierzel


In this centuries-old folktale with roots in Slavic mythology, a water nymph falls in love with a prince. With the help of the moon and a witch, she defies her father’s advice— giving up her home and voice to win the prince’s love on dry land. When it does not go to plan, the regretful prince seeks redemption, and heartbreak reigns in the land of true love.

Elias Grandy, General Music Director of the Opera and Philharmonic Orchestra Heidelberg makes his Portland Opera debut conducting Rusalka. Eric Simonson, writer and director for film, television, theatre, and opera, makes his company debut as stage director. Scenery and Properties are designed by Erhard Rom, costumes are designed by Kärin Kopischke, projections are designed by Wendall K. Harrington, and lighting is designed by Robert Wierzel.

Soprano Karen Vuong, whose recent credits include roles with Seattle Opera, Washington National Opera, and Tiroler Festspiele, makes her Portland Opera debut in the title role of Rusalka. Tenor Limmie Pulliam, whose recent credits include roles with the Los Angeles Opera, and Vashon Opera, makes his debut as the Prince. Mezzo-soprano Jill Grove makes her company debut as Ježibaba, a role she has sung with Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, as well as New Orleans Opera. Also making their Portland Opera debuts are bass Andrew Potter as Vodnik “The Spirit of the Lake,” and soprano Othalie Graham as the Foreign Princess.

Scenery, properties, projections, and costumes for this production were constructed by Minnesota Opera Shops and are owned by Minnesota Opera and Boston Lyric Opera.  



Absence: Terence Blanchard featuring the E-Collective and Turtle Island Quartet 

A One-night-only ConcertMay 26, 2023, 8:00PM

Keller Auditorium, 222 SW Clay Street, Portland

Sung in English with English captions. 

The performance is approximately 1 hour, 50 minutes. 




Damien Geter


Karen Slack


Will Liverman




Terence Blanchard


Charles Altura


Taylor Eigsti

Electric Bass

David Ginyard, Jr.


Oscar Seaton


Turtle Island Quartet  


David Balakrishnan


Gabriel Terracciano


Benjamin von Gutzeit


Naseem Alatrash


In May 2023, Portland Opera will welcome two-time Oscar nominee, six-time Grammy-winner, and acclaimed opera composer (Fire Shut Up In My Bones and Champion) Terence Blanchard to the Keller Auditorium for an exciting one-night-only gala celebration.

This special event, conducted by interim music director and co-artistic advisor Damien Geter, will feature the E-Collective, Turtle Island Quartet, guest soloists soprano Karen Slack, Portland Opera’s co-artistic advisor, and Will Liverman, as well as the talented musicians of the Portland Opera Orchestra.

This performance is an optional addition to a season subscription. Single tickets are available from $35. A limited number of post-show celebration reception tickets are available for $250, in part as a tax-deductible contribution in support of Portland Opera’s bright future.

Subscriptions for Portland Opera’s 22/23 season are available now; and single tickets will be on sale on May 24. For more information, and to purchase subscriptions, visit portlandopera.org, or call Patron Services at 503-241-1802.

Portland Opera appreciates the ongoing support of our generous donors, The Collins Foundation, James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Community Foundation, Regional Arts and Culture Council, including support from the City of Portland, Multnomah County, and the Arts Education & Access Fund, special support from The CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Fund, and The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program. 

Dates, programming, artists, and details for Portland Opera’s 22/23 season are subject to change. Portland Opera is committed to the health and safety of our audiences, artists, and company members. The company is working with health authorities and medical advisors to continue to adhere with local, state, and federal guidelines. To create a safe and enjoyable experience for all, Portland Opera may implement staff and patron precautions, which may include face coverings, symptom screenings, temperature checks or other recommended safety measures.  

Oregon Ballet Theatre Fans Will Sink Their Teeth into Dracula

Oregon Ballet Theatre Fans Will Sink Their Teeth into Dracula

Portland, OR. Oregon Ballet Theater (OBT) has announced it will take a uniquely Portland approach to the month of love with the premiere of Ben Stevenson’s Dracula.  It’s based on Bram Stoker’s 1897 gothic novel of the same title. (Photo credit, Kat Luber courtesy Tulsa Ballet). The music is by Franz Liszt and will be performed live by the OBT Orchestra.

Set in the 1800s, the story follows Count Dracula’s fascination with his lawyer’s fiancée, Mina, after losing his beloved wife, Elizabeth, to suicide.

Ben Stevenson, the choreographer of this ballet, has created dozens of full-length ballets for companies in the U.S. and abroad. To create Dracula, Stevenson used the format of the great story ballets of the 19th century.

Here’s more information from OBT:

Dissatisfied with his bevy of undead brides, Count Dracula fixates on Svetlana, a young girl on the cusp of engagement, to satiate his thirst for fresh blood. Abducted by Dracula’s faithful henchman Renfield, Svetlana is dragged away to the Count’s castle from where she may never escape but for the heroism of her true love, Frederick.

Recommended for ages 8 and up.

Showtimes & Tickets

Buy Tickets to Dracula

• Please note the that OBT Box Office is currently unavailable for walk-up sales at our Bancroft studio location.
• All patrons are required to show proof of vaccination or negative Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours of the performance. Details HERE

Purchase with confidence! Our priority is the health and safety of our patrons. We recognize that it may be difficult to plan during these uncertain times, that’s why we have adjusted our exchange and refund policies on future programming that may be impacted by the COVID-19 virus. Read MORE.

About Oregon Ballet Theatre:

OBT is the largest professional ballet company in Oregon, employing nearly 200 people and attracting artists from around the globe with our reputation for excellence. The company is rooted in the traditions of classical ballet, with a repertoire that ranges from the great classics to premieres from some of the most exciting choreographic voices in the field today. Our mission is dedicated to the vitality of, and access to, world-class ballet performance and training in our region.

February 4th is National Wear Red Day for Heart Health Awareness

February 4th is National Wear Red Day for Heart Health Awareness

Portland, OR. Women who think they’re healthy often misread the symptoms of a heart attack because they don’t think it could happen to them. That’s why it’s crucial to learn about heart attacks, know your numbers and live heart-healthy. Now is a good time to review some basics about the Warning Signs & Symptoms of Heart Attack and Stroke.

Heart attack and stroke are life-or-death emergencies — every second counts. If you think you or someone you’re with has any symptoms of heart attack or stroke, call 911 immediately. The Oregon Chapter of the American Heart Association has some important information about heart health.

Signs and Symptoms of Heart Attack

If you have any of these signs, call 9-1-1 and get to a hospital right away.

  1. Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes or goes away and comes back.
  2. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  4. Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
  5. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort.

    But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

What do I do if I’m having a heart attack?

If you experience any of these signs or symptoms:

  • Dial 911 immediately, follow the operator’s instructions and get to a hospital right away.
  • Don’t drive yourself to the hospital.
  • Try to stay as calm as possible and take deep, slow breaths while you wait for the emergency responders.

There is a technique called Hands-Only CPR that is recommended if you should see a person who needs CPR. Here’s a video about it:

Signs and Symptoms of Stroke

If you have any of these signs, call 9-1-1 and get to a hospital right away.

  1. Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg, especially on one side of the body
  2. Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  3. Sudden trouble seeing or blurred vision in one or both eyes
  4. Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  5. Sudden severe headache with no known cause

From the Oregon Chapter of the American Heart Association:

A Culture of Health in Oregon & SW Washington

We’re working to create a world free of heart disease and stroke – a world where everyone can live your healthiest life. We know that true health is influenced by the places you live, learn, play and pray. Our work in Oregon & SW Washington includes working with local industries to improve the health of workers, increasing access to healthy food in our community, teaming up with city and state leaders to promote health policies, and providing our kids with more opportunities to be active in school.

Contact Us

4380 SW Macadam Avenue #480
Portland, OR 97239
(503) 820-5300

Oregon Zoo Offers Two Experiences For ZooLights This Holiday Season

Oregon Zoo Offers Two Experiences For ZooLights This Holiday Season

PORTLAND, OR. Whether you want to explore ZooLights from the comfort of your own car or walk around with your family and friends, Portland Zoo has an ‘enLIGHTening’ experience for you.

ZooLights Walk Night allows you to walk through a display of more than 1.5 million lights with your family and friends, while ZooLights Drive Nights in January lets you explore the magic while in your car.

Visitors drive through ZooLights.

A child and adult enjoy ZooLights on foot

This ZooLights event is presented by the U.S. Bank. Open Nov. 19, 2021 to Jan. 9, 2022 (excluding Christmas Day, Dec. 25), advance timed online tickets required; no walk-up ticket sales

ZooLights is a separately ticketed event. Admission to ZooLights is not included with a daytime admission ticket. All daytime visitors must leave the zoo when the zoo closes at 4:00 p.m. to prepare for ZooLights, even if you have the same night ticket for ZooLights. Your ZooLights admission ticket will be scanned for separate entry at that time.

The zoo comes alive in animal-themed lights, however no animals will be viewable at this event.

All reservations must be made online.

Discounted ZooLights admission is available for Oregon and Washington individuals and families who qualify for a variety of income assistance programs. To see if you are eligible and to purchase tickets visit Oregon Zoo Discounts.

For more information, visit: shop.oregonzoo.org/#/SpecialEvents/ZooLightsDrive


Wy’East Mountain Academy Launches Financial Aid Program With Fundraiser

Wy’East Mountain Academy Launches Financial Aid Program With Fundraiser

Portland, OR. Wy’East Mountain Academy is an outdoor-oriented, action sports academy designed to develop students in the classroom as well as in the outdoors. The organization is launching a nonprofit foundation to help offer financial aid to students who otherwise would not be able to attend.

Most students attending Wy’East Mountain Academy are enrolled in Edgenuity, an accredited online elementary and secondary school. The school’s web-based curriculum meets Oregon state standards while licensed teachers provide the instruction online.

The academy enrolls students ages 12 to 19 who want to combine a rigorous academic setting with skiing, snowboarding, skateboarding, mountain biking, and other outdoor recreation sports.

Wy’East Mountain Academy offers sport-specific coaching that facilitates athletic progression at all levels, from just starting out to competing professionally. Its first annual Good in the Woods fundraising celebration will be held on Friday, December 17th, 2021. The goal is to bring families and supporters together to celebrate the new 501c3 not-for-profit status and to raise $50,000 in scholarship funds so administrators can extend the Wy’East Mountain Academy experience to more students. To help reach the goal, there is a Penny for Penny match on all proceeds raised.

Student at Wy’East academy on graduation day.

The school holds a parent’s weekend each year.

Kevin English, Academy President, explains the plan to raise $50,000. “The goal of Good in the Woods is to help raise funds for tuition assistance. When you look at any of these sports we’re talking about, they’re incredibly resource-intense, these are not inexpensive sports in the first place, and then you couple that with a boarding school, it really limits the number of people who can afford to do something like this.”

Unique silent bid items include fun items like snowboarding & skiing gear, IKON pass, renowned action sports photography, and airline tickets. “Adversity is nothing new to this school,” English said when talking about challenges faced during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Our team, coming from this action-sports world, is really all about risk mitigation. When you’re a high-performance athlete, that’s all you’re doing, you’re never eliminating risk, but just learning to mitigate existing risks and I think that’s what we’ve done with the school and we’ve navigated it rather well.”

From Wy’East Mountain Academy:

Wy’East Mountain Academy (formerly Windells Academy) is a world-class outdoor-oriented, action sports academy designed to develop driven and talented students in the classroom as well as in the outdoors. Wy’East enrolls students ages 12 to 19 who want to combine a rigorous academic setting with skiing, snowboarding, skateboarding, mountain biking and other outdoor recreation sports. To this end, we offer sport-specific coaching that facilitates athletic progression at all levels, from just starting out to competing professionally. We enable students to learn, train and participate in sports year-round while attaining high school or college credits that are transferable in or out of any US accredited school, national or international.

The meaning of Wy’East.

“Wy’East” is the original name for Mt. Hood, given by the Multnomah people who first inhabited its nearby lands. That this mountain draws us together is central to our spirit of adventure and achievement. It is this special place we call home and to which we pay homage.

What we believe.

Our mission is life improvement through people, place, and passion. We believe that if you put the right people in the right place, with shared passions and college preparatory academics, you’ll not just improve the life of young person, but change the world by helping to create driven and compassionate citizens.

Our vision is to be a top ten globally rated outdoor academy with alumni who are helping to improve the world.

Our core values are embodied in these words:

* Relationship-Based * Refreshing * Influential * Authentic * Welcoming *Uninhibited * Genuine *Credible *

* Progressive * Caring * Socially Responsible and Community-Minded * Passionate * Purpose Driven * Humorous *

* Imaginative * Diverse Perspectives *

For more information or ways to contribute, check out the website, or email [email protected]

OSU President’s Dinner Honors Major Donors With Hybrid Event

OSU President’s Dinner Honors Major Donors With Hybrid Event

Portland, OR. Oregon State University supporters celebrated the impact of philanthropy at the President’s Dinner on October 26th. It was a multi-access event for 150 in-person guests at the Portland Art Museum and additional 200 participants online. Alumni emcees Lamar Hurd from Trail Blazers Broadcasting and Cathy Marshall of KGW Television (pictured above) led the program filled with stories of students and faculty.

Organizers say, “With this year’s President’s Dinner, we were able to blend the best of both worlds and offer guests the choice of how they wanted to participate. Our in-person offering was designed with COVID safety in mind – vaccination required and a smaller number of attendees than in the past. We also got creative with ways to connect our in-person guests with those joining virtually. We had a live chat feature and placed iPads on each table to help make sure our in-person and virtual guests has a shared experience.”

The OSU Foundation hosted the event, celebrating a record 25 households and organizations that have recently joined the Milton Harris Society, which honors OSU donors for lifetime gift commitments of $1 million or more.

The OSU Foundation hosted the event, celebrating a record 25 households and organizations that have recently joined the Milton Harris Society, which honors OSU donors for lifetime gift commitments of $1 million or more.

OSU Foundation President and CEO Shawn Scoville said, “One silver lining of the pandemic has been finding new ways of engaging alumni and friends in the life of the university, regardless of where they live.”

OSU Interim President Becky Johnson discussed OSU’s work related to the pandemic and climate impacts, aided by donors who invest in faculty. “I’m proud that OSU is a leader in providing access to affordable higher education among top research institutions,” she continued. “This year’s entering class is the most diverse in our history. About one-fourth of Corvallis students and one-third of OSU-Cascades students are the first in their families to attend college. Much of this would not be possible without your support, and I’m profoundly grateful for your generosity.”

Here’s a video about the new members of the Milton Harris Society:

From Oregon State University Foundation:

Here’s a list of the new Milton Harris Society members:

Robin & W. Charles “Chuck” Armstrong, ’66
Todd A. Baker, ’94
Eastern Oregon Coordinated Care Organization
Susan Hamm Fritz, ’69, & Dennis W. Fritz, ’64, M.S. ’67
Kristin Gilley Fritz, ’88, & Michael W. Fritz, ’88
Robert M. Goldstein, ’77
Sheila and J. Michael Goodwin
Eric H.I. Hoffman, ’79, & Janice Kelleher Hoffman, ’81
Marilyn & Ronald R. Hudson, ’69
Paula D. & Kenneth S. Krane
Marilyn K. & Russell V. Kuhns, ’68
Christine Pullin Levy, ’70, & Thomas H. Levy, ’70
Lone Rock Resources
David A. Montagne, ’87
Dixie L. & Kelly C. Morgan, ’79
Northwest Farm Credit Services
Gwendolyn A. & Michael D. Purdy, ’76
Roy L. Rogers, ’56, Family
Roundhouse Foundation
Kelly K. Douglas & Eric H. Schoenstein, ’88
Nancy Billingsley Searles, ’71, & V. Kent Searles, ’71
Linda K. & Murray L. Smith, ’59
Nancy M. & Edwin M. Squires
Sunderland Foundation
Unique Botanicals LLC

Watch videos from the 2021 President’s Dinner:

The Oregon State University Foundation seeks to create a better world by inspiring support of – and for – OSU. The OSU Foundation partners with OSU to engage the community, inspire investment and steward resources to enhance the university’s excellence and impact.

Autism Society of Oregon Holds In-Person Fundraising Walk

Autism Society of Oregon Holds In-Person Fundraising Walk

Portland, OR. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic prompted the Autism Society of Oregon (ASO) to shift towards a virtual walk fundraiser rather than their standard in-person event. This year the organization is back in full swing for its annual Autism Walk fundraiser at Oaks Park in SE Portland on August 15th. The event will include a wide variety of fun activities for individuals with autism and their supporters.

ASO says the event will be “a family-friendly, autism-friendly community event celebrating the people we love on the autism spectrum.” Some of these activities include the half-mile walk that gives the event its namesake, a photo booth, a water display courtesy of Portland Fire and Rescue, and sewing/needlecrafts with PDX Stitch. Additionally, the nonprofit has partnered with several local groups and organizations such as Cosplay Characters for Kindness and Portland Ghostbusters who dress up as fictional characters and attend charity events for photos and to make attendees smile. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 concerns, the event will not include face painting as it normally would in a non-pandemic year. Those interested in attending the Autism Walk can register for the event to help raise funds for it here.

A group of people dresses as Star Wars characters hold the ASO banner at a previous event.

All funds raised for the Autism Walk will go towards ASO’s various programs and resources designed to support people on the autism spectrum. ASO aims to maximize the quality of life of Oregonians on the autism spectrum, guiding them towards self-determination and working to end societal stigmas against autism. Money raised at this event will be used to create further educational materials on what autism is, and resources for those on the spectrum and their families such as a sensory booklet and cookbook which can be downloaded off the organization’s website. In addition to informational resources, funding for ASO will also go towards the organization’s initiatives to directly support those affected by autism and their families, including the “take a break” and “take a breather” programs which put vouchers or tickets for activities or monetary funds into the hands of autistic Oregonians and their caregivers.

In addition to these programs, ASO also hosts workshops, classes, and webinars to educate Oregon about autism and how to approach it. Further, the organization has supplied its supporters with a directory of support groups for those with autism as well as a comprehensive list of scholarships and financial aid for autistic individuals to apply to. All of these helpful and informative resources can be supported by registering for the Autism Walk fundraiser this Sunday, the 15th from 9:00 AM- 12:00 PM. Registering for the event will also make those interested in attending eligible for a discount coupon on ride bracelets at Oaks Park, to be used at noon once the rides open. Ride bracelets for the event at Oaks Amusement Park can be purchased here.

A large crowd in attendance at a previous Autism Walk event hosted by ASO. The organization expects lower attendance in 2021 than in previous years due to COVID-19 concerns.

For other ways to support ASO’s mission, the organization has have a donation page on its website. If readers would like to attend other upcoming events hosted or sponsored by the organization, all upcoming events can be found within the Autism Society of Oregon’s event calendar.




Feral Cat Coalition Holds Showcase of Kitty-Friendly Outdoor Play Enclosures

Feral Cat Coalition Holds Showcase of Kitty-Friendly Outdoor Play Enclosures

Portland, OR. The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon (FCCO) is holding its ninth-annual “Catio” Tour in September. “Catio” is a portmanteau of “cat” and “patio,” which describes outdoor enclosures for pet cats to climb and play in safely, without risk of the animal escaping. To adjust to pandemic restrictions, FCCO has converted the tour to include both in-person observation and virtual self-guided tours of this year’s selections around the Portland metro area.

Catios come in all shapes and sizes, often containing ramps to climb, perches to rest on, and toys to play with. Following a year when many spent extensive time at home working on DIY projects, the trend of creating safe outdoor spaces for cat recreation has increased in popularity.

After many submissions, the nonprofit has selected all Portland-based catios to showcase. Registration for the event is now open here, for all interested in watching cats explore innovative constructions designed for their leisure. The 2021 Catio Tour event will take place on September 11th, 2021. The in-person self-guided tour is $10 and virtual tour access is $15.

The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon has already announced that the event will be happening in 2022, and invites all catio creators to prepare for application. The FCCO has posted additional information online detailing what catios are and can be, as well as a list of resources for Portland residents interested in having their own catio. The list includes Portland-area construction businesses that design and build catios, as well as information and instructions for those who wish to build their catios independently, from scratch.

The 2021 Catio Tour event comes as part of a partnership with Portland Audobon society, as part of their Cats Safe At Home campaign, which aims to “reduce the number of cats living outdoors in the Portland metropolitan area in a humane and environmentally responsible manner.” Catios can assist with this initiative by providing outdoor time to pet cats, while ensuring safety from outdoor hazards, protecting wildlife from cat predation, and preventing cats from running away from their owners.

From The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon:

The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon is a Portland-based nonprofit that offers spay and neuter services to Oregon and SW Washington. Their services are free for feral, stray, and barn cats, but unfortunately due to the pandemic, The FCCO is unable to offer cheap services to pet cats as they usually would. In addition to spay/neuter services, the organization also coordinates a “kitten caboose” program which has successfully relocated over 1,300 feral kittens into adopted homes. You can support the Feral Cat Coalition in its mission of housing cats, and keeping them safely off the streets on its website.


The Green Light for In-Person Concerts is Music to the Ears of Local Nonprofit

The Green Light for In-Person Concerts is Music to the Ears of Local Nonprofit

Portland, OR. As Oregon reopens, one activity Oregonians are eagerly anticipating is the return of concerts and live music. The Portland nonprofit, Friends of Noise is a local organization making a  return of live music possible, and accessible for anybody who wants to get involved. It provides sound equipment to performers, hosting free age-inclusive shows, and helping creative youth navigate the local music scene. Now starting its summer 2021 season, the nonprofit has a fresh slate of performances and events to bring the joy of communal music experiences back to Portland youth, including a dance battle, hip hop cypher performance, and multiple outdoor concert events for youth artists.

Friends of Noise provides programs, workshops, and other professional development opportunities for teens and young adults to gain experience with sound equipment, and performing so they are more prepared to navigate the music industry.

An integral core foundation to Friends of Noise is the belief that getting young performers and audience members involved in music is essential to the growth of the local and global music community. 

The nonprofit offers a variety of services to support Portland’s musically-oriented youth, including professional development workshops providing skills for involvement in the music industry, paid opportunities for youth musicians to perform, and offering sound equipment services for independent, youth-organized concerts, teaching those interested how to operate such equipment and offering youth paid opportunities for work with sound technology. According to Friends of Noise executive director André Middleton, the nonprofit’s mission is to “facilitate healing and growth in the community” for Portland youth artists, with a focus on BIPOC individuals.

Middleton admits that the COVID-19 pandemic was difficult for Friends Of Noise, with the nonprofit completely halting operations like most other businesses at its start. However, the organization still found ways to utilize its services mid-pandemic to further its commitment to justice by providing sound equipment to local Black Lives Matter protests and marches to “lift up the voices of the unheard.” Friends of Noise even helped host a BLM protest event on labor day 2020 in Portland’s Cathedral Park, providing and setting up sound equipment for speakers.

Middleton says that his organization’s greatest challenge of the pandemic has been the recruitment of new youth performers and sound technicians to work with, stating that reconnecting with the musical youth of Portland is the current “highest priority” for Friends of Noise. Thankfully, they were still able to support independent young musicians of Portland through the pandemic by recording isolated performances in various Portland music venues from a wide range of talented youth, editing them, and uploading these performances to the Friends of Noise Youtube channel as part of their “Friends of Noise TV” series.

Here’s a video from ‘Friends of Noise TV’:

A woman of color performs music on a stage outlined in orange lights and backdropped by blue curtains in a small music venue with red curtains hanging from the walls. She stands next to a banner with the "Friends of Noise" logo on it, and in front of her there is a camera mounted on a tripod filming her performance. in the foreground of the image, we see the back of a male sound technician wearing headphones to the left, and a computer screen showing the different camera angles recording her performance to his right.

Behind the scenes photo depicting the filming of a live performance by Arietta Ward/”Mz. Etta” at Jack London Revue for the Friends of Noise TV YouTube concert series.

Middleton says what he was most excited for about the return of live music, but for Friends of Noise, concerts have been back for a while as they have done sound equipment for and hosted a series of concerts for youth artists in parks around Portland, following COVID safety procedures such that youth could still gather, connecting to both music and one another, safely. He is most eagerly anticipating the Friends of Noise Summer Jam being held for free at Oregon Contemporary on July 11th from 6-10pm, where the organization will be hosting a variety of talented young performers. Middleton also noted that he is currently working with a youth graphic designer in a paid opportunity to create a poster for the event, highlighting his organization’s commitment to uplifting creative youth and getting them involved in as many ways as possible.

Middleton hopes support for Friends of Noise will take off this summer in comparison to last year, as the organization has its eyes set on a large, yet important project— the creation of a free, youth-led, all-ages, all-inclusive space for performances, music, workshops. and creativity as part of public housing in Northeast Portland. He expressed disappointment in the fact that Portland currently has no all-ages, youth-inclusive concert spaces, and hopes to change that by saving the organization’s funds and donations to establish the community center.

More information about Friends of Noise can be found at the nonprofit’s website, friendsofnoise.org. Here, supporters of FON’s mission can find times and locations for all of the organization’s upcoming events mentioned in this article and many more. Further, readers can donate funds through the website via posted PayPal, Venmo, and Cashapp to help make André Middleton’s dream of an youth led and focused, all-inclusive community concert center a reality— one which places the importance of creative expression above alcohol sales.

‘Hope Reigns’ as Rose Festival Gears Up for Second Scaled-Down Year

‘Hope Reigns’ as Rose Festival Gears Up for Second Scaled-Down Year

Portland, OR. The theme for this year’s festival is ‘Hope Reigns’ and organizers are encouraging local businesses to decorate their buildings and storefronts. It’s the second year with modified activities. In 2020 some aspects of the festival were similar to the past, like the crowning of Queen Anya Anand seen above, but organizers explain, “Oregon isn’t quite ready yet for big outdoor events, and the health and safety of our community is still our top priority. The Rose Festival has been here for more than a century despite many challenges and will be here when Oregon is ready for big outdoor events again as we start down the runway to the traditional Rose Festival in 2022.”

Click here for a  link to a festival website event list. Programming like the Court and Porch Parade will continue this May & June 2021. This year, with Portland businesses hit especially hard from the pandemic and social unrest, the Festival is reaching back to the time when all of Portland turned out with Rose Festival-themed floral decorations. Businesses are once again being encouraged to decorate a front door, window or even building face. The Portland Rose Festival will produce an online map with the locations, so the public can walk, bike, or drive around, and share in the celebration.

The Rose Festival Porch Parade celebration runs from May 31 through June 13, 2021. (Registration is now open at this website on the Porch Parade page.) The Rose Festival Porch Parade celebration runs from May 31 through June 13, 2021. (Registration is now open at this website on the Porch Parade page.)

Click here for a link to the porch parade info and registration.

The Rose Festival’s Parading in Place concept wasn’t only popular in Portland, festivals across the country picked up the idea in: San Antonio, Detroit, New Orleans, Mobile, Alabama, and Washington D.C. to name just a few.

Themes for the 2021 Rose Festival Porch Parade honoring the Rose Festival’s three traditional parades include The Grand Floral, the Starlight, and the Junior parades. Porch designers are encouraged to pull out their seasonal Christmas lights and create a multi-themed concept with a Grand Floral Parade or Junior Parade in daylight hours, and a Starlight Parade theme by night. Porch Parade designers are not limited to Rose Festival themes and are encouraged to create their own family-friendly fun ideas to share with the greater Festival community.

In 2020, the Porch Parade encouraged people to decorate outside their homes.

Last year, dignitaries formed a procession to tour selected homes.

From The Rose Festival:

The Portland Rose Festival Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that serves families and individuals with programs and events that promote the arts, education and volunteerism. We value environmental responsibility, diversity, patriotism and our historic & floral heritage.

For more information www.RoseFestival.org

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Twitter: @PDXRoseFestival

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