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"The dream of the 90's is alive in Portland!"

Portland, OR (not to be confused with Portland, Maine, after which it was named due to a coin toss between its two founders who both wanted to name it after their home town—Boston was the loser of the coin toss if you were curious) is Oregon's largest city and a major city of The Other Rainforest. Portland is known for being almost as rainy as Seattle but twice as bizarre. Portland's nicknames include the City of Roses/the Rose City, Stumptownnote , Portlandia, PDXnote , Rip Citynote  and "the place where young people go to retire". The residents are often stereotyped as hipsters, Granola Girls, New Age Retro Hippies, left-wing Moral Guardians, or any combination of the above. It is, however, not quite as bizarre as Portlandia would have you believe. Portlanders are serious about their beer, bicycles, books (Powell's Books is the largest independent new and used book store in the world), and food carts.

Portland is divided into six sextants: North, Northeast, South, Southeast, Southwest, and Northwest. North and South are divided by Burnside Street (and addresses along Burnside are merely given the designation of "East" or "West"), while East and West are divided by the Willamette River. South Portland, a narrow strip of land hugging the Willamette, was officially split from Southwest in 2018, with street addressing reflecting the split in 2020. North Portland, finally, is basically a peninsula that juts off from Northeast Portland going into the Willamette. Downtown Portland is made up of central Southwest and Northwest Portland, while the "cool" hipstery areas are largely found in Southeast and Northeast (and are where a lot of the neighborhoods accused of having gentrified are located). There is an unofficial seventh "sextant" occasionally referred to as "East Portland" or "East County" that starts roughly at 82nd Avenue and runs Eastward until it runs into Gresham, which has a reputation of being significantly poorer, under-served by city and county resources, and less white than the rest of the city, with a heavy Asian and Slavic influence. African-American Portlanders have traditionally been concentrated in North Portland (it used to be that they were "redlined" out of living in any other part of the city, though this is no longer the reason) although gentrification has pushed more and more black Portlanders Eastwards.

Notable people connected to Portland:

Works set in or near Portland:


  • In Tattoo, a collection of short stories based on the music of Tori Amos, the story for "Take to the Sky" is based in Portland's black community.
  • Portland was the main setting of The Transformers during the Marvel era, apparently being the closest city to Mount St. Hilary.
  • Portland is the main setting for Stumptown, as evidenced by the name of the main investigation agency.

Films — Live-Action

  • The Hunted (2003). The film features an action scene where Benicio Del Toro's character is pursued through Downtown Portland (notable for a sequence involving a MAX train on the Hawthorne Bridge—in spite of the fact that the MAX doesn't go on the Hawthorne Bridge).
  • Mr. Brooks: A successful Portland businessman turns out to be a serial killer.
  • Untraceable. The climax prominently features Portland's Broadway Bridge, which made some local headlines when the film was first released.
  • The first Twilight movie was largely filmed in and around Portland, although it takes place in Forks, Washington. For the second movie onwards, production was moved to Vancouver, British Columbia.
  • Mr. Holland's Opus was filmed and set in Portland, though the only indication in the movie that it is Portland is the city seal on the wall during a meeting of the City Council.
  • The first and final thirds of Gus Van Sant's Drugstore Cowboy take place in Portland circa 1971.
  • Reds starts off in Portland, it being the hometown of John Reed. The scenes there take place in 1915 and portray Reed meeting Louise Bryant, who was then a writer for The Oregonian. Like most of the movie, these scenes were actually filmed in England.
  • Elephant (2003) chronicles a school shooting at a high school in the Portland suburbs.
  • The Day Called 'X' is a 1957 dramatisation of an evacuation of the city in the face of a nuclear attack. Of interest to history buffs not only for the Cold War theme, but because of the footage of areas of the city that have now changed. Portland residents played all the roles except The Narrator.
  • The first part of Leave No Trace takes place in Portland, where the main characters live off-the-grid in Forest Park.



  • InCryptid: The Price family compound is located outside Portland.
  • Blue Like Jazz, a semi-autobiographical work by Don Miller.
  • Beverly Cleary's Ramona Quimby books
  • Chelsea Cain's Archie Sheridan novels take place here. It's a nice place, except for the serial killers.
  • The climax of The Amy Virus takes place in this city, as it's the city Cyan runs away to with the help of Renate and Eroica to escape her abusive parents.
  • Poster Girl is set in a Mega City formed from Portland, Seattle and Vancouver.

Live-Action TV

  • The short-lived Life Unexpected
  • Leverage during the fifth season, though it had been filmed there from Season 2 on.
    • The fourth season episode "The Gold Job" sees the team pulling a con on a brother-sister cash-for-gold scheme in Portland. Little details of the scenery start seeping in, like how Parker keeps getting distracted from the con by Voodoo Doughnuts.
  • The Librarians 2014 being made by the same people as Leverage is also filmed in Portland, but is actually set there from the beginning, with the Annex's entrance being under the St. Johns Bridge
  • While New Girl is set in Los Angeles, the protagonist, Jess, hails from Portland. The cast visits the city in season four to attend her father's wedding.
  • Everything Sucks!, actually set in the nearby bedroom community of Boring.


  • The song 'Light Rail Coyote' by indie-punk band Sleater-Kinney is about the city and mentions many of the sites.
  • The Bon Iver song Holocene is about a Portland bar where the band played an early show.
  • "Portland, Oregon" by Loretta Lynn and Jack White, from the former's Van Lear Rose album.

Tabletop Games

  • Shadowrun: After the whole state of Oregon was handed over to the newbown Elven nation and renamed "Tir Taingire", the city of Portland became more important as a port of commerce and City of Spies.

Video Games

  • Not actually mentioned in The Oregon Trail, but the game ends with you rafting down the Columbia River to reach the Willamette Valley. This places your final destination roughly in the location of modern-day Portland. In Oregon Trail II and Oregon Trail 5th Edition, you raft down the Columbia River to Fort Vancouver (present-day Vancouver, Washington) before rafting down the Willamette River to Oregon City. Vancouver and Oregon City are now both within the Portland metropolitan area, downtown Portland being just to the south of Vancouver and to the north of Oregon City. In Oregon Trail 3rd Edition and Oregon Trail 4th Edition, you raft to Fort Vancouver and then travel overland to Oregon City. Between Fort Vancouver and Oregon City, you should encounter Portland, then a tiny settlement on the Willamette River, but neither game includes it, presumably for the sake of The Law of Conservation of Detail.

Web Original

  • For Portlanders Only, a sub-site of Platypus Comix, is full of Portland-related media.
  • Curbside Classic is based in Eugene and started with the site's owner photographing older, interesting cars he found in use in the area, which has plenty due to a lack of road salt.