Rowdy Last Thursday might lose support

Portland is deciding what to do about city funding for the Alberta Last Thursday art walk, which has gotten out of hand.

Share this article!

Portland Mayor Sam Adams and Commissioner Amanda Fritz recently held a public forum regarding the future of Last Thursday, the monthly art walk in the Alberta neighborhood that has been plagued with complaints of rowdy behavior.

While the event would likely be able to carry on regardless of what the city decides to do about funding, the art walk has changed drastically over the years.

Last Thursday’s biggest advocates say the event embraces the city’s anti-establishment heritage. There’s a Ken Kesey-esque beauty in letting everyone do as they please on Last Thursday, from street vendors to fire dancers to assorted merry pranksters. But only so far.

While those layers of activity indicate the event’s evolution in terms of pure expression, it doesn’t mean it’s matured or ripened. Who’s willing to burden the responsibility for what happens at the event? Right now, no one is. The reality is that Last Thursday takes place on limited geography that requires reliability. It’s one strip. By comparison, it’s not First Thursday’s broad swathe of multiple streets and many square blocks. Activity thus becomes heightened, and hyper centralized; streets, sidewalks and private property get messed up. Throw in alcohol, and the best intentions turn into the worst scenarios.

Read the full story at

{biztweet}Portland Last Thursday{/biztweet}