Hot Tips for Cold and Rainy Riding

November 19th, 2015 by Maria DeLorenzo

Portland is starting to act like Portland again and that means we’re riding in the dark and damp. Whether you’re a bike commuter in fancy work clothes or a spandexed speed demon, we’ve compiled some tips to keep you safe and dry in the rain.


Georgia in Dublin Leggits, waterproof overshoes with reflective straps and rubber toe soles.

Get the right kicks:
Get a pair of nice rainboots or waterproof shoes for riding because nothing is worse than soggy feet. Hit up Next Adventure for new or used shoes, you’re bound to find more than enough gear there to survive the elements. Andy & Bax has a wide selection of boots and shoes; they even have waterproofing spray and waterproof socks!

Online you’ll find that Bogs makes some sweet waterproof boots and shoes and they’re sold in various locations around town: REI or Clogs-N-More. For the dapper dressed, Timberland, Keen, and Hunter make stylish rainboots. And don’t forget Leggits, waterproof overshoes!

Love some gloves:
Keep your handlebar hands from freezing up with a pair of warm and waterproof gloves. Cycling Portland covers the best winter riding gloves in this post. Also check out Bike Portland‘s review of gloves from Showers Pass.


Rain capes from Clever Cycles!

Rainproof yo’self:
So you’ve been living in Portland for how long and you don’t have rain gear? Get on it! Chrome Industries makes upscale bags and gear for urban cyclists; their outerwear provides protection from the wind and rain, with reflective details, active and passive venting, a mobile fit, and bombproof fabrication.

Portland-based Showers Pass makes all sorts of raingear for the sporting rider, while Nau designs outdoorsy apparel for the more fashionably minded (their flagship store is located at 304 NW 11th).

Of course, Andy & Bax, Next Adventure, Columbia, and REI are all local spots to suit up. For the ladies, Gladys Bikes carries a variety of cycling apparel, favoring businesses and makers that are local, women-owned, and USA made. You can always try a bike poncho or rain cape! Local shop Clever Cycles wrote an awesome blog about rain capes.

Winter biking 101:

  1. Tune it up. We know you rode hard all summer, so now is the time to tune it up and hit the slippery roads in better shape. Our favorite shops for tune-up and gear are: Clever Cycles, A Better Cycle, River City, and Bike Gallery.
  2. Check your tires: Decreasing tire pressure can actually help improve traction on slippery streets.
  3. Slow your roll: Road grit and water can erode brake pads, so slow down and brake early. In Portland, our streets are currently covered with wet leaves which function as cycling sabotage. Slow down, brake early, and watch the road.
  4. bikeparty

    Light up your bike!

    Watch the corners: Cornering in the rain can problematic. Shift as much of your weight on the outside pedal as possible, keeping the bike more upright when cornering. You’ll be able to take the corner with a reasonable amount of speed, keeping balance as tires slide over slippy spots.

  5. Be seen: Obviously, visibility is a lot lower in winter. Many local riders even use lights during the daylight hours, due to the low light and gloom. Make sure you’ve got high and bright lights in the front and visible back light (carrying an extra set of batteries isn’t a bad idea either). Our favorite local spot for lights is Portland Design Works, featuring high-quality and simple gear with the urban cyclist in mind. Reflectors wherever possible is also recommended.
  6. Get some fenders: Nobody wants to arrive at their destination covered in a thin film of road grime. Portland Design Works’ also makes beautifully designed fenders, a must-have for rainy day riding.

Moral of the story is: suit up and ride safe. See you on the streets!

Filmmakers Gather for Showcase of Northwest Films

November 5th, 2015 by admin
This year’s Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival (Nov. 12-18) presents 45+ short and feature films from filmmakers across the Northwest, selected by guest Festival judge Steve Anker. Anker is the former Dean of the California Institute of the Arts School of Film/Video and formerly served as director of the San Francisco Cinematheque as well as artistic director of the Foundation for Art in Cinema.

_J4xIydnJMRULqhXpHmkdSJZdxxP1z48CHFUDVzYHJ4Festival film highlights include director Lewis Bennett’s THE SANDWICH NAZI, a feature-length expansion of his short film, which screened to much audience acclaim at the 39th Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival; Zach Weintraub’s SLACKJAW makes its Portland debut after premiering earlier this year at the Locarno Film Festival; WELCOME TO THE CIRCUS, Courtney Coulson’s involving portrait of a mobile, cross-cultural circus for children in Palestine; Michael Turner’s THE WAY WE TALK investigates one of medical science’s most baffling and enduring disabilities — stuttering — through the personal experience of its director.

Eqw0UPZcb3chZOY8JJ2JsmfLxFLKx0S9K2AzF2KvKQUIn addition to features, the Festival offers three programs of short films. Shorts I: Fantasies and Diversions — a collection of films from makers based in Portland, OR, Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, and Vancouver, BC — will kick off the Festival on Opening Night at 7 p.m. with filmmakers in attendance. Shorts II: Tracing Space and Shorts III: Intimate Portraits are collections of films by makers throughout the NW region, ranging from the experimental to animation to narrative and non-fiction.

Beyond the numerous screenings on offer, the Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival also provides opportunities for aspiring and working filmmakers to interact directly with peers and industry professionals through events such as the Northwest Filmmakers’ Un-Conference, previously BarCamp, an opportunity for the regional filmmaking community to gather together and explore the issues and challenges facing today’s independent filmmaker.

pak67Dl9SQxvcfk-IzD7dvynuAhG5XRBLuQTqa7zSgETo compliment the festival, the very first Northwest Filmmakers’ Expo (Thursday, Nov. 12, 10am-5pm) will bring together buyers and users of filmmaking equipment and services with top regional and international vendors offering a hands-on look at their latest technology and the multitude of filmmaking resources available. Already confirmed vendors include Canon, Zeiss, JVC, Panasonic, and Sony among many others.

While drawing heavily from film and video industry professionals, the Expo — held in the Portland Art Museum’s Sunken Ballroom — will also be a different breed of Expo with many of the top creative agencies in the Northwest also contributing their time and ideas to make this a trade show like no other, one uniquely suited to Portland’s creative film community.

Q9DaYm10iZ3qunI-SQT70Ev0YT3jJs1UWHUPY8HkliY,4Z-Hbgg4C8j_G-BTQ5se1PLLgInoI3gEm173isxR-tY,KyKrm_gNjRUCOm_71Vyb-vG4hL-aKWKq4mbovhGYmIA,eD1OQw9_zxSekM-vThis year’s Opening Night party, sponsored by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and the Oregon Cultural Trust, will also be held in the Portland Art Museum’s Sunken Ballroom. Both the entirety of the Expo and the Opening Night Party will feature music provided by XRAY.FM’s DJs.  With the exception of one film, all Festival screenings will take place at the Northwest Film Center’s Whitsell Auditorium.

For more information, visit The 42nd Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival microsite, where you can access film descriptions, ticketing links, and more.

The Northwest Film Center is a regional media arts organization offering a variety of exhibition, education programs, and artist services throughout the region.  The Center presents a program of foreign, classic, experimental, and independent works year-round at the Whitsell Auditorium, located in the Portland Art Museum.  For more information, visit


Hit the Heights at Alpine Fest

November 2nd, 2015 by Maria DeLorenzo

2201398775_bb12063c24_z (1)Winter has struck and it’s time to hit the slopes or hike the peaks of some epic mountain. Alpine Fest is coming this Nov. 17-22, presented by Grivel & hosted by the Mazamas, it promises to be a info-packed weekend celebrating all forms of Alpine recreation.

Activities scheduled are as follows:

The Summit: An Evening with Alex Honnold & Jim Whittaker. The BIGGEST night of the festival! Nov. 21 at the Oregon Convention Center. You’ll enjoy great food, a huge silent auction with amazing gear from the sponsors, vendor fair, awards, and more. (food is included in the ticket price; beer & wine available for purchase).

Portland Ice Comp: 10th Annual dry-tooling competition at the newly-renovated Portland Rock Gym.

Clinics: 3-hour, hands-on sessions with a pro-athlete. Clinics are limited to 8, 10, or 12 people (depending on location, subject) to maximize your instructional time with the athlete.

Seminars: 1, 2 or 3-hour classroom style learning with a pro-athlete.

Speaker Series: An evening event, slideshow style presentation from a pro-athlete.

Celebration of Trails: A morning of trail running fun in Forest Park for all ability levels.

The Mazamas is a nonprofit mountaineering education organization in Portland, Oregon. Offering over 1000 climbs and hikes annually, classes and activities are open to both members and nonmembers.

Seeking: Friends of Trees

October 22nd, 2015 by admin

Photo from Matt Pizzuti and

Portland Pedal Power was happy to partner recently with the awesome organization Friends of Trees, currently seeking crew leaders for their fall plantings. More information is included below:

The Northwest is covered with outdoor spaces where, although they are open space, the impact of human encroachment is still all too apparent. They are corners of parks and greenbelts where vegetation is trampled or disturbed, or riparian zones where invasive species have choked out native plants. As more and more local land is taken up by development, these protected green areas in and around the city are extremely important habitat for wildlife as well as flood and pollution control.

With an ever-improving understanding of these urban-boundary ecosystems, Friends of Trees is one organization restoring local watersheds by planting native shrubs and trees. As a Crew Leader, you’ll get special training in plant identification, planting techniques and troubleshooting. You’ll lead crews that plant hundreds of baby trees, beautifying these spaces and offering them back to the wilderness.

Friends of Trees’ most visible work in urban areas is promoting and planting the yard and streetside trees that you’ve probably noticed in your area with Friends of Trees tags on them. Urban trees bring numerous benefits you can enjoy directly when they’re growing in your home or neighborhood, and this, too, is done through the leadership and support of Crew Leaders who can provide volunteers with direction and teach planting techniques. You’ll learn a lot about identifying and caring for trees and interact directly with communities.

Being Crew Leader is an easy way to quickly get some knowledge and experience with trees and plants, as well as some basic leadership experience with a lot of support from Friends of Trees staff. After a one-day training you’re ready to show up on planting days to greet your fellow crew leaders, enjoy free food, get your assigned plot and lead your volunteers as they arrive. Crew leading is also a great way to get some regular light exercise and take some photos to spread awareness of trees. For your first season (November-April), you’ll co-lead your crews with an experienced mentor while you learn the ropes.

Register today to save your spot! If you have any questions or need more information about this role, please don’t hesitate to contact Jenny & Randi in the Volunteer & Outreach Program at 503-595-0213 or by emailing

[Post submitted by Friends of Trees: Material from Matt Pizzuti]

Our Catering Kitchen is Growing!

October 15th, 2015 by Maria DeLorenzo

Boise Fry offers a variety of potatoes and cut fries, from shoestring to po’boys.


Luscious fillings from Divine Pie, raw, vegan, and gluten free!


Wolf and Bear’s: the cutest little food cart that ever was.

Part of being your favorite delivery concierge and catering option means providing customized breakfast, lunch, and dinner from the best restaurants in Portland. We’ve made all of Portland our catering kitchen, always adding new vendors, products, and restaurants to our online ordering options. Add some new flavors to your workday and try out these new options:

Tamale Boy: Tamales here are either Oaxacan or Norteño style, filled with chicken mole negro, chile verde pork, passilla pepper and queso fresco, or slow roasted pork. The menu at Tamale Boy also features burritos, enchiladas, and a number of creative seasonal options. There are quite a few vegan and gluten free options as well. Spice up your workday and order up!

Boise Fry Company: The standout here is fresh cut local potatoes (pick a potato: Kennebec, gold, sweet potato, yam, purple, or Okinawa; pick a cut: shoestring, homestyle, curly, po’balls), fried to perfection with a long list of signature sauces and seasonings. Order a beef, bison, or vegan burger on the side. Boise Fry is committed to using organic, local, an enviro-friendly products wherever possible.

Sake Japanese and Thai: A fusion of flavors intersect at Sake, from fresh sushi to a variety of noodle dishes and soups: ramen, udon, pad thai. Offer your group a variety of flavors and options by ordering direct from Sake!

Wolf and Bear’s: Get fresh with Middle Eastern inspired vegetarian salads and pita made from fresh quality ingredients, as organic and local as possible. Pita wraps are packed with creative combinations and delicious fillings: grilled eggplant, caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, hummus, homemade kalamata tapenade, creamy Mediterranean cheeses, and tahini.

Divine Pie: These pies may be raw, vegan, and gluten free but that doesn’t keep them from being pure heavenly indulgence, with flavors like Passionfruit Cheesecake, Key-lime, Coconut Cream, and seasonal Pumpkin and Apple. For your next office event or holiday party, add in some divinity fit for all dietary needs. We can easily add a few Divine Pies to any order.

Cargo Bikes to Save the Day!

September 30th, 2015 by admin

Disaster (517x800) (414x640)Imagine this: It’s two days after the big earthquake… roads are broken, fuel is unavailable, but your family and neighbors need supplies. Think you are out of options? Think again! Use your cargo bike!

Portland cyclists are called to test their navigation, problem solving and load hauling mettle on October 17th, 2015 in a disaster drill designed to showcase the relevance of cargo bikes in disaster relief.

Portland’s 4th annual Disaster Relief Trials (DRT) is a cargo bike competition that makes a visual display of the potential of bikes as a key component of disaster response and recovery. In a friendly competition between human-powered vehicles, self-supported riders will carry up to 100lbs. of cargo while navigating a course of 10 predetermined checkpoints throughout North Portland. At each checkpoint, riders will overcome obstacles (e.g. concrete barriers, deep water, rough terrain, etc.) or complete tasks designed to simulate providing disaster assistance to their community.

The 2015 DRT will have a “hub-and-spoke” checkpoint arrangement, centered at the University of Portland. Riders will begin on campus and return periodically to the “hub” at the University of Portland to complete disaster relief challenges, making this year’s event especially spectator friendly. The LeMans start, barrier crossing, flood fording, awkward load lashing, and harried relief cargo delivery will all be located at the campus hub. All are welcome to come to the University of Portland to watch the riders accomplish their challenges and for a resilience fair with information and activities to get you prepared for any disaster.

In addition to being a challenge for riders, the DRT will serve as an exercise for other aspects of community disaster response such as Neighborhood Emergency Response Teams (NET), local Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES), and the newly developed Oregon Virtual Operations Support Team (VOST).

2015 DRT Sponsors include: University of PortlandPortland Bureau of Emergency ManagementMultnomah County Emergency ManagementCascade Regional Earthquake Workgroup


Portland Pedal Power will be participating in this exciting and important upcoming event and we hope you’ll join us!


A Match Made in Portland

September 24th, 2015 by Maria DeLorenzo

Transporting Healthy Food to Those in Need by Bike


European plums and Bartlett pears. Picked by the Portland Fruit Tree Project

For the last three years Portland Pedal Power has partnered with the Portland Fruit Tree Project to support the neighborhood harvesting parties sprouting up around the city. Groups of neighbors on bikes work to harvest urban trees, donating fresh fruit to local food banks. The program is expanding this year from the Richmond neighborhood to start bike harvests in Woodstock and surrounding neighborhoods; there is a current need for neighborhood participation, harvest leaders, and volunteers.


Paige, a volunteer at Portland Fruit Tree Project

“The bike events help connect the community a little more,” says Amanda Virbitsky, a harvest leader in the Richmond neighborhood. “Instead of driving cars separately to sites, we ride together and get to experience the neighborhood together.”

Bike harvesting parties typically meet at a set location, then ride as a group to several harvesting sites. They transport all the harvest tools by bike too: fruit pickers, crates, and even an ingeniously made trailer that doubles as an orchard ladder.

Fruit is sorted by quality; everything that looks grocery store fresh is donated to the food banks, and the rest is divided up among the volunteers. Portland Pedal Power then loads the donations by cargo bike and transports the fruit to Urban Gleaners, who handles distribution of the fruit to local food pantries and food banks.

Diana Foss at Urban Gleaners says they’re grateful for the fresh fruit, most of which goes to their Food to Schools program that sets up family food pantries in schools. “Typically food bank food donations have been canned or boxed foods, not the healthiest options,” says Foss. “It’s a really important a source of fresh produce, which is usually really expensive for struggling families.”

The Portland Fruit Tree Project truly empowers Portland’s neighborhoods to share in the harvest. Homeowners and those with urban orchards can connect with the Portland Fruit Tree Project to share the bounty of their trees. Neighbors who want to lead harvests are encouraged to connect as well. Harvesters that need a delivery assist can call on Portland Pedal Power.

Equal Exchange = Small Farmers, Big Change

September 8th, 2015 by admin

Guest post from Hope Williams at Equal Exchange

From left to right : Teodora Lunazco (27) Teresa Trad’o (27) Erlinda Pizarro (28) Naura Navarro (24)

Cacao farmers (Olaf Hammelburg)

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Producer trip India, 2012 (Scott Patterson)


The Equal Exchange rainbow of staff members

Equal Exchange was founded over 30 years ago with the purpose of redefining the way we approach trade. Our goal was to use trade to support and empower small farmers and democratically run coops around the world. We envisioned long lasting and tangible social change through honest and truly fair partnerships.

Today we still fight everyday against the ever changing market, social and climatic events that put at risk our farmer’s livelihoods. We continue this fight by not only paying the best price for our products to our farmers but also providing on-the-ground support to ensure their crops quality, longevity, durability, and productivity. We work with our farmers to organize and claim more control over the volatile market and demand a fair price for their products. We do all of this in the name of authentic fair trade.

At Equal Exchange we roast our coffee fresh locally to the highest standards. Craft chocolate with pure simple ingredients: all fair trade and organic cocoa, sugar, and vanilla. We work on developing non-plantation models of fair trade tea using alternative trade models. To put it simply: we are proud of all of our products. By purchasing an EE product you are making a direct and noticeable impact globally. We can trace every purchase you make to the farmers who provided the product. Our supply chain is always transparent, always Fair Trade and always organic. We truly believe that small farmers create the biggest change.

Teaming up with Portland Pedal Power was an obvious choice. Jenn and her PPP team are a group of outstanding innovators, hard workers, and strict purveyor of the best local products you can find. PPP’s work strengthening local brands and transforming the equal_exchange_186_400x720_72_CMYK (1)Portland delivery system is necessary and exciting. PPP is a great resource to help Equal Exchange expand our work within the Portland market. With the help of PPP, Equal Exchange is eager to reach more local businesses and increase market impact for our farmers

Since Equal Exchange believes in holding ourselves to the same standards as our farmer partners, we organized ourselves into a worker-owned cooperative. Each worker-owner retains one share and one vote. We set very strict pay ratios for ourselves in order to maintain a fair and equal workplace. Additionally, Equal Exchange maintains a no-sell out clause in our bylaws that prevents the owners from ever making a profit by selling of the company. This is done to maintain accountability and responsibility for the company’s choices and actions. We work not for profit or personal gain but for the advancement of our farmers and social justice around the world.

For more information visit: or our blog:

New Partnership with Newspace Center for Photography

September 2nd, 2015 by admin

2015_Fall_Newspace (800x788)Newspace Center for Photography is a multidimensional photography resource center and community hub for students, working artists, professional photographers, educators, and photo-enthusiasts of all types. Through a full roster of course offerings, gallery exhibits, digital lab, darkroom, and lighting studio access, artists’ lectures, portfolio reviews, an artist residency, and more, Newspace makes a wide spectrum of enriching photographic opportunities available to the Portland Metro communities.

The Center’s broad curriculum is made up of beginning, intermediate, and advanced classes. From foundational, technical classes to classes on creative studio lighting, darkroom and alternative processes, design and digital applications, personalized training, and creative classes for the fine-artist, Newspace has an evolving variety of educational programming to choose from.

The Newspace gallery mounts 12 exhibits annually. Artists are showcased in solo or two-person shows with the occasional group show or juried exhibition. Curatorial emphasis is placed on modern, fine-art and documentary photography and has included the work of emerging as well as established artists. The gallery is free and open to the public.

In addition to regular programming, Newspace fills a particular niche in supporting the regional nonprofit community by partnering with other organizations to enhance the programming goals of all institutions involved. Newspace has partnered with Washington School for the Deaf, Saturday Academy, Portland Community College, as well as Pablove Shutterbugs – a nonprofit that teaches children living with cancer to develop their creative voice through the art of photography.

facade8Newspace sees Portland Pedal Power as an undeniable partner within the PDX community. We both strive to support and collaborate with organizations that are locally owned and sustainably minded. We engage and challenge the community to think differently – whether creatively through art and photography or holistically through sustainability and green practices. Newspace is proud to be aligned with Portland Pedal Power and encourage all of our members, followers, students, and donors to help improve Portland through healthy and holistic practices. Be Creative! Make Photographs! Ride a Bike!

(Guest post from Newspace)

There’s a New Sandwich in Town

August 31st, 2015 by Maria DeLorenzo

Chef Charlie and wife Ali at the deli

We’ve just added a new yummy vendor into our always growing delivery stable, Charlie’s Deli. Chef Charlie Mattouk has got an east coast flair for hefty sandwiches, thick cut meats, and classic deli sides. Their food is handmade from scratch, meat is always smoked or slow cooked in-house, and they don’t skimp on size — these sammies are BIG.

The menu boasts a large selection of meats: smoked brisket, pork shoulder, prime rib, corned beef, and pastrami. The Willamette Week raved about the pastrami on rye and called the brisket “damn juicy.” All sandwiches come with a free side too!

Some menu stand-outs include:
Corned Beef on Rye: Charlie’s Home Made Traditional Corned Beef | Smoked Swiss Cheese | Pearl Bakery Marble Rye Bread | French’s Yellow Mustard | Pickles
Smoked Pork Shoulder: Applewood Slow Smoked Pork Shoulder | Smoked Pepper-Jack Cheese | Pearl Bakery French Baguette | Tomato | Lettuce | Onion | Pickles | Mayo | BBQ Sauce
Pastrami on Rye: Applewood Slow Smoked Angus Brisket Pastrami | Smoked Swiss Cheese | Pearl Bakery Marble Rye Bread | Pickles | Deli & Dijon Mustards
Smoke Angus Brisket: Maplewood Slow Smoked | Angus Brisket of Beef | Smoked Tillamook Cheddar | Pearl Bakery French Baguette | Lettuce | Onion | Pepperoncini | BBQ Sauce | Smoked Garlic Mayo

We’re also excited about their giant fresh baked cookies and cannoli.

He and his wife Ali are an exceedingly friendly pair of hosts as well, with a great staff, and their location downtown is definitely worth a visit. Or even better, order some sammiches direct from us, and we’ll deliver them hot and piping!