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portland wed

Who’s at the front door? We’re expecting Bride’s Maids. Has anyone seen the Bride’s Maids? Or the bride? via DG Studio

Every marriage has a beginning. This is one of them. Portland Born, Portland Wed.

I met my wife in early 80’s NW Portland.

She was a new professional starting her first practice next to my apartment building.

I should say my studio apartment, a sort of mini-pad that’s all the rage with the kids these days.

No car, just a bike. My mom asked who I planned on dating with a bike.

It was a part of town transitioning from low rent and biker bars to coffee shops. Who doesn’t love coffee?

We transitioned right along, moving from neighbors, to dating, to husband and wife, though we weren’t Portland wed.

When the business exodus to Hawthorne started, we followed.

It was exciting to ride the wave of urban evolution.

While NW 21st shops started new east side stores, we started a new family. Our son was born in a second story flat on 11th and Lincoln.

He was our Portland boy, our Portland anchor after we moved to the suburbs.

Twenty eight years later we still make a detour to cruise the big house on the corner of the 11th and Lincoln intersection and say, “That’s where we started our family.”

It’s a good feeling, along with many other memories, and they all just got demoted.

portland wed

The ladies have the look of ancient tradition with the bridal window behind them. They were a beautiful sight on Yamhill. Still, no bride sighting?

For example, I saw Portlandia swim up the Willamette River and climb to her perch on the Portland Building. It’s been called a great moment in public art, maybe the greatest, but it just moved down a notch.

Before the KOIN Tower blocked the view, I drove the east lanes of Highway 26 out of the tunnel and saw Mt. Hood.

It was a rare treat on clear days and always had something of an omen about it.

If you could see Mt. Hood it would be a good day.

portland wed

My mother in law and step dad lined up the wedding march. No bride in sight, but no worries.

Since then I’ve seen the mountain from a KOIN penthouse. It was an exclusive view once available to everyone coming out of the east bound tunnel and it’s moved down, too.

What could possibly be more stunning than Portlandia or the mountain?

portland wed

Father and son sharing the glow. “Where’s the bride?” “Just keep smiling.”

Only my Portland boy all grown up and marrying his true love in downtown Portland’s Adrianna Hill Grand Ballroom with the wedding party camped out for two nights in the Broadway Marriott.

Trusting all the moving parts would work on time in Portland congestion seemed a stretch. I was wrong.

It felt like coming full circle watching the wedding ceremony inside the art deco Pythian Building with my friends from fifth grade and my kid’s friends from kindergarten.

portland wed

The groomsmen doing their best Godfather on the wedding day. Is the bride over there? Where?

Heads turned between Director Park and the bright tower of Park Avenue West, then absorbed the contrast of going up the steps on Yamhill into old Portland.

The city made a difference while the kids grew up to be Portland wed.

From Powell’s to Saturday Market to the Park Blocks, we took urban hikes.

Toddlers turned into adults with great memories. Now there’s another one.

portland wed

Two brothers and the MAX train. No one even joked about making a break for it. No one asked, “Is the bride on the train?”

It’s a tribute to Portland manners when a young couple gets married without a hitch.

The wind, cold, and rain was perfect Oregon weather… for the coast, but it didn’t put a damper on festivities.

This city center Portland wedding warmed the town streets like a fresh batch of Voodoo donuts, or plate of Pok Pok wings.

It was everything you ever wanted in a wedding, and a couple to make it all work.

portland wed

The first wedding of the bunch gets the vote of approval.

Pictures of the MBB (most beautiful bride) are on hold until further notice. She looked incredible on their wedding day, but I’ll wait for the green light before posting any here.

The FOG (father of the groom) has a role that needs patience.

For example, this FOG took the role of valet and parked cars, shuttled flowers, and picked up any slack in the line.

If you decide to do more than wait until the ceremony, be sure to communicate what you’re doing.

Ignore the wedding chain of command and you’ll hear about it.

“Where have you been hiding?”

“How do you disappear where no one can find you?”

And my favorite, “Have you been in the bar the last three hours?”

Unless you’re good at hiding, disappearing, and drinking, let others know what you’re up to.

And answer your phone.

About David Gillaspie


  1. San Francisco had Herb Caen, Chicago had Mike Royko, and Tigard has the Boomer!

    • David Gillaspie says:

      Hi Ed,

      You’ve got me in great company. Royko was best when he had his pals join him in columns. I’ve invited them here, too.

      Thanks for coming in. I think you get it.



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