Features (188)

Finding A Common Tongue — How Immigrant Women's Organization In Her Presence Does the Good Work

“The hardest was to find snow suits for the babies,” Penny Carson tells me as she gestures to the navy toddler suit lying next to the heaps of English Language Learner workbooks and vocabulary flashcards on the couch. Penny Carson, a retiree in her seventies, volunteers as an English teacher to newly arriving refugees and asylum seekers at local non-profit In Her Presence. “There will always be more need this winter you know, so I’ll…

The 2017 Portland Cheap Eats Guide

Welcome to Portland, Maine. Food is good here. (We get it.) Real talk, though. The praise heaped on the high end of city cuisine is totally well deserved. But sometimes, y’know, that’s not what we’re about. Here, we carved out space for some amazing meals Portlanders can get on a tight budget. If you’re someone with a busy lifestyle who juggles a love of food with an appreciation for “old Portland” aesthetics (and maybe class…

The Horse in the Room — Watching 'The Bachelorette' as a POC

When sociologists look back through the annals of television at Rachel Lindsay’s season of The Bachelorette — which comes to an end this Monday, August 7 — they will get a closer look at America’s collective anxiety about race and culture.  Will they find it odd that Rachel, the first black Bachelorette in history, has two white best friends? Or that several of her relatives are in interracial relationships? Will they be as shocked as…

The Kids Will Have Their Say — Telling Room Students Review Portland

  From angry tweets to Yelp reviews to presidential declarations of FAKE NEWS, you can't go anywhere without being subjected to an adult's opinion. It's completely exhausting. So for this week, we collaborated with the Telling Room, Portland's homegrown writing hub, to get the unvarnished opinions of Maine youth. Students from their summer "Week in Review" camp dove into the city's cultural attractions — new Italian restaurant Lazzari; the song "Anna Kendrick" by Wells rapper…

The Art Of Protest — Every Decision Counts in Mainer's Participatory Film 'The Maribor Uprisings'

In 2017, the stakes of organized dissent seem exceptionally high. The 214 people charged as part of the anti-fascist protests on January 20 — a/k/a the DisruptJ20 action during the inauguration of Donald Trump — have been hit with felony charges and currently face up to ten years in prison. These blanket charges — levied onto some without evidence that they did anything more than show up — are the most severe repercussions for nonviolent…

Is Portland Dying? Housing, Inequality, and the Future of Bayside

“In cities that function as growth machines, where economic growth is prized above all us, the needs of the poor and middle class are eclipsed by the desire to inflate the value of land.” Peter Moskowitz.   Two black youths — let’s call them Alex and John — were playing basketball in Kennedy Park last week, and musing about the neighborhood they live in: East Bayside. It didn’t take long for their conversation to turn…

This Thing Is On — Inside the Portland Maine Comedy Festival

A great comedy set is an extremely subjective experience. They come in so many different themes and styles that it’s impossible for one to be universally loved. Someone in the audience is bound to get offended, and typically, comics don’t care. On the contrary, it fuels many of them. George Orwell’s words, “every joke is a tiny revolution,” ring true today in a time where comedy sheds the remaining vestiges of our puritan past and…

Conflict By Design — How a Power Struggle Between Mayor and City Manager Was the Plan All Along

Imagine, if you will, City Hall as a large playpen. Now place into it three children. One we shall call Jon; a second named Council (what odd names these parents are giving their children these days!); and a third named Ethan. Now, imagine some hypothetical parents toss in two beach balls — one to Jon and another to Council. Seeing that he has no ball to play with, Ethan wants to use Jon’s. But Jon…

Portland's 2017 Summer Guide

Summer in Maine reminds us how good it is to be alive.   Our state is peppered with beautiful lakes, miles of epic coastline, and gorgeous mountain trails that when witnessed, makes us appreciate our paltry existence. Here, seemingly sheltered from the world and its myriad problems, many of us are lucky to breathe fresh air, drink clean water, and exist a short ways away from natural marvels. As cliche as our state motto is,…

A Phoenix Guide to PortFringe — 8 Days of Raw, Risky Performances from Around the Country

The Yellow Wallpaper by Bare Portland, Photo by JJ Peeler/James Patefield That's right, PortFringe is back for its sixth year! From June 17-24, nearly 50 new, weird, and edgy original shows by artists from around the country will be performed in tight, intimate venues throughout Portland's arts district. Since wading through these acts can be a bit daunting, we created this handy guide to this year's festival. In the mood for something dark and apocalyptic?…
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