Alberta Arts District Portland: An Artist’s Haven

“Two hundred, sixty dollars for an almost-new commuter bike? Wow!” As I stood in front of the Community Cycling Center, a handful of cycling enthusiasts were happily outside, tuning up their rides for the day. The Center provides refurbished bicycles for sale, as well as new and used parts and accessories. They even provide repair services. True to its name, it also provides outreach programs and advocates for the cycling community.

Looking for a fun, funky fresh way to experience Portland? You’ll certainly find it on NE Alberta Street. Affectionally known as the Alberta Arts district, this neighborhood is a haven for the artists who live and work here. People from all over the Portland metro area flock to this part of Portland for its unique shopping, stunning murals and culinary experiences.

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NE Alberta Street is mostly residential, until you reach NE 14th Ave, up to about NE 30th. It is then that the color palette explodes with numerous murals depicting the neighborhood’s eclectic and diverse personality. The stunning motifs reflect Latino, Asian, and African-American sensibilities. As one of the oldest parts of the city, Alberta was in its early days populated by poor immigrants, who over the years turned the neighborhood into a thriving center for creative artists and small business owners.

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Last Thursday

During the last Thursday of every month, Alberta hosts its street fair – a celebration of food, art and community. It is an enduring event (going on 19 years!) for local artists to showcase their work.

Alberta Co-op Grocery

Support the local economy buying stocking up at this small grocery store on the corner of Alberta and NE 15th. The store works directly with local farmers to give you fresh produce, and they also offer homeopathic items.

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The bear knows.

Collage

For you crafty folk, this shop cannot be missed! Browse a wide array of sewing, painting, jewelry and mixed-media supplies. They also give classes and workshops.

Petite Provence

A stylish café featuring French-inspired food. THE place to have brunch in Alberta. I recommend the Wild Northwest Salmon hash paired with their tasty mimosas! This place will have you waddling out the door.

Pine State Biscuits

How about the best biscuits and gravy in Portland? Oh, and with a to-die-for side of fried chicken breast? There’s a reason this place consistently has a line out the door. After placing your order, keep an eagle eye out for the next availalble seat as you sip your locally sourced cup of joe and watch the kitchen prepare your delicious meal.

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This brunch line is out the door for a reason. Yum and double-yum.

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The heavenly Pine State Biscuits and Gravy

Frock

Better shop here BEFORE you eat! If you plan trying on their cool dudes, that is. Frock has affordable and whimsical fashions which feature several local designers. Go frock yourself!

Green Bean Books

A new and used children’s bookstore. A great place for families, they have a relaxing deck and garden in the back for the parents while your youngers get their literary fill. They also have crafts, story time and author readings.

This is just a small sampling of what you’ll find on NE Alberta St!

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