Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Cathedral Park Jazz Festival

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The largest free jazz festival west of the Mississippi

Last weekend was the Cathedral Park Jazz Fest.  It’s one of the few times in the year that people from all over the area travel to St. Johns. 

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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Rocket Boy

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Kirkland Leach gives an impromptu performance in his yard as his caregiver and musical collaborator Shane de Leon looks on.

Last month I photograph a nine-year-old boy with autism who is also something of a musical prodigy.  His caregiver, Shane de Leon, seen above has become part of his musical act as well as his record producer.  Their band is called Road Race and they are having a CD release party at Back Space in NW Portland.  You can read the whole story at The Portland Sentinel website site.

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Monday, July 06, 2009

Canceled!

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A close-up of one of the personal fireworks people were shooting off along the Columbia river
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Distant fireworks could be seen over Clark County as darkness fell, but the big show at Ft. Vancouver never began.

Saturday was Independence Day.  Before our daughter Anika was born, my wife Summer and I used to go to a side-street in a neighborhood to watch the fireworks over the Columbia River.  On the Washington side, Ft. Vancouver played host to the largest fireworks display west of the Mississippi.  The place Summer and I had found afforded a great view of the spectacle while avoiding the crowds across the river.  This year we thought Anika was finally old enough to stay out late and see a fireworks show.  She was very excited about it.  My parents drove up from West Linn to join us.

We drove out and found a nice patch of grass next to the yacht club where we had a great view of Ft. Vancouver location.  As we waited for the twilight to wain, I noticed that there was no barge on the river.  Usually the fireworks were set off from a barge.  As time passed we could see distant firework displays going off all along the Columbia shore—but still there was no barge in front of Ft. Vancouver. 

Finally, I pulled out my Blackberry and Googled Ft. Vancouver Fireworks.  “Due to a lack of funds the 4th of July Fireworks Show has been canceled for 2009” came back in first listed response.  I guess I should have looked it up before I took my whole family out to the edge of the river—but it never occurred to me that such an iconic Northwest celebration would fall victim to the recession.  Still, the weather was warm and pleasant with a cool breeze coming off the water and the other people gathered at our location were providing their own fireworks—though on a smaller scale. 

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Saturday, July 04, 2009

Summer Snow

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My Daughter Anika enjoys tramping in the snow on Logan Pass at the top of Going to the Sun Road.

Here in Portland we are having our first heat-wave of the summer.  It’s been in the 90’s for the past several days.  The current the weather makes it hard to believe that it was just a week ago that Anika was playing in the snow on the continental divide in Glacier Park.

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