Letters of Support
“The Portland Art Museum is fortunate to have deep roots in the civic life of this city, providing access and opportunities for people to experience art, culture and ideas across time and place. Know Your City is an example of another organization that is making a significant contribution to the cultural discourse of Portland and the larger region. The Museum looks forward to future Know Your City collaborations and furthering our shared interests in cultivating learning about our community’s past and surfacing some of the hidden histories of this city we call home.”
— Stephanie Parrish
Manager of Docent Programs & Gallery Teaching, Portland Art Museum
“In October 2010, I participated in the Know Your City’s bicycle tour, Walls of Pride. The tour throughout North and Northeast Portland introduced participants to the rich history of African-American art and murals on view in public locations in the area. This bicycle tour inspired me to think about my position in the community here in Portland. As a white woman video artist and educator, I interact with many of Portland’s artists, art students, arts administrators, curators and other cultural producers. These artworks do not seem to be part of the community conversation around cultural production in the city, despite the fact that the works are often quite large and are located in almost every neighborhood of North and Northeast Portland. I have begun to address this disconnect in small ways, first by talking with people I know and I recently added related content to my courses. All community members benefit when we have a broader understanding of who we are as Portlanders and the KYC plays a vital role in promoting cross-cultural awareness, a role that does not seem to be satisfied by government agencies or other organizations.”
— Julie Perini
Assistant Professor, Portland State University
“I was invited to speak at a two-day event organized by the Know Your City that celebrated the history and contemporary development of Portland’s Chinatown; a subject with which I am infinitely familiar. I was asked to give two interactive presentations following a tour of this ethnic community. It was a notable experience and I was amazed at the high number of people who attended and delighted at the opportunity to participate in a community discussion and a presentation that included the audience. It really was a one-of-a-kind experience for me. Reflecting on the event and the professionalism in which the organization structured my presentation, I can say, without reservation, that it was incredibly well done. Many conferences and seminar organizations could learn a great deal from the dedication and care that Know Your City exhibits in its planned events.”
— Dr. Marie Rose Wong
Associate Professor, Seattle University
Urban Planning, Asian American Studies
“Know Your City is a great addition to Portland’s diverse cultural and educational opportunities. It is unique in that it cuts across normal highly focused interests to look at our community and our state in a broad and exciting way. It also brings together people of wide backgrounds and ages, all connected by the desire to find out who we are as a people and how we got to be what we are. In short, Know Your City is an exciting, continuing adventure into the heart and soul of our region.”
— Ed Klein
“I am a historian and author of books and articles on Portland, the Northwest, their institutions and figures. I hold Know Your City member card two. I have had fun it in, learned from it and met very interesting — and interested — people in it. I admire its multiplying contributions and effective democratic leadership. It is strongly program-driven and full of good ideas. It operates so inexpensively that almost anyone can afford its events and publications — and with added outside support, it will do much more.
It is skillful in encouraging its members to have the final (and earlier) say in things. It does its homework. Each tour description clearly states who will be talking about or showing what and at what places. The speakers, as I have observed and examined in organizational materials, are knowledgeable and the places visited quite appropriate.
In a very short time and on the thinnest of shoestrings, this club has become a quite vital and cleverly publicized small local organization. Older ones (some I belong to) have something to learn from how its enthusiasm keeps mounting and how it attracts and retains a broad income- and age-range. Ages amazingly range from the twenties into the seventies.
Funders and others have a great chance to be in on the ground floor of supporting a dynamic grassroots organization with laudatory long-term goals and inspired ways of teaching them.”
— Harry Stein
Author/ Collaborator, Merchants, Money & Power. The Portland Establishment, 1843-1913