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Originally intended as an extension of the South Park Blocks, the North Park Blocks were the result of a donation of five blocks the city of Portland received from John H. Couch in the year 1869. In 1904, one block was reserved for women and children, and, two years later, a new block with a playground was added. After 1924, the park fell into disrepair, but Huo Baozhu's donation of bronze elephants in 2002 breathed new life into the facility.
This fourteen story tower known as the Commonwealth Building, formerly known as the Equitable Building was said to be one of the first glass box towers that was ever built. The building, built between 1944 and 1948 operated as the headquarters of the Equitable Savings and Loan Association and was known to be equipped with modern elements for its time, such as double-glazed window panels and complete air-conditioning.
Is there a certain art to the way you clean a room? Can a machine have historical significance? You could survey the janitors and housekeepers of the world, or you could just stop at this museum and see for yourself. Attached to the vacuum cleaner showroom of the same name, this establishment, which has kitsch written all over it, is filled with vacuums dating all the way back to the turn of the century. Check out the Hoovers, Kirbys, Royals, Eurekas and more. Admission is free.
Located in the heart of the cultural hub of Portland, Upfor is an art gallery which goes above and beyond simple visual exhibitions to include installations, performances and much, much more. The gallery displays contemporary art in all its forms with a bias towards the new-age digital media. Contextual presentations and performances are organized here side by side with regular installations of sculptures and paintings to create an interactive environment which is both intriguing and unique.
This spectacular square is one of the best places to find all kinds of people, concerts, festivals, fund-raisers and everything else that goes on in the city. Once an address to Portland's first school, today visitors and locals come here to eat their lunch by the on-site waterfall, tall columns and wrought iron structures. Quite possibly one of the busiest blocks in town, it is a great place to people-watch and get an idea of what a typical Portlander looks like. In the blocks surrounding the square you'll find some of the best upscale shopping in the city. The square is also where you will find the Portland Visitor Information Center.
An eclectic, electric live art form is always progressing here. Staged in 8,000 square feet of Portland's Pearl District, Portland Institute For Contemporary Art focuses on getting audiences involved and evolving art into new forms through performance and fusion. Past presentations have included Monsters of Grace, a digital opera, and a benefit with the work of pop surrealist Kenny Schaf. The newer theater always seems to be expanding and raising funds. Members receive discounted admission and other perks.