November 29, 2007


Thanksgiving in Portland was a cozy affair, a little chilly but that means more hot toddies, right? We visited four black and white photobooths over two days, all of which were well maintained and in interesting locations. First, two notes about locations I had heard of and tried to visit: Despite what is written here, I can confirm that there is no black and white booth at Le Train Bleu. Also, the photobooth that was located at Rudy’s Barbershop on Division is no longer there, and has moved to either the Ace Hotel (according to the woman who answered the phone at Rudy’s) or Ground Kontrol (according to this Flickr discussion); no matter, as we’ve got both locations covered.

So, as far as we know, the only booth that remains undocumented is the booth at the Oaks Amusement Park, which we’re eagerly awaiting from a contributor who has offered to send in photos.

We’ll start with the booth in the lobby of The Ace Hotel, which was already posted in our directory but required an in-person visit to check out the details and see how the booth fits in with the general greatness of the hotel. The engraved glass, above, and the nice window sign, below, were particularly nice touches.


Also downtown, we visited the booth at Little Finnegan’s, the younger sibling of Portland’s venerable Finnegan’s Toys. Somewhat more rebellious and geared toward an older crowd, Little Finnegan’s stocks Last Supper lunchboxes and librarian action figures and the rest, and the photobooth fits right in.

matador_sign.jpgAfter spending an afternoon on Hawthorne, I walked back on Belmont St. and found Holocene, a block up on Morrison, not long after they opened for the evening at 5pm. The place was empty, but the photobooth was in fine working order, and I even found a dime on the floor while I was taking my photos. Who says this is an unpaid job?

The last booth we visited lives at Matador, a dark little bar on Burnside on the way to Nob Hill. The photobooth is back by the kitchen, and is plastered with photos of drunken bargoers, often with shirts pulled up, pants pulled down, or whatever else seemed like a good idea at the time.

From a family-friendly toy store to a true dive bar, Portland’s photobooth scene seems healthy once again.

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