In just two short years, we’ve seen the Bob White Theatre reborn after two-plus decades of inactivity and decay; renovated; offered to the community for their interests; raucous shows that have angered local businesses and residents; gone dark; stalled; and now reborn again.
Of all those fits and starts, Pulsar Productions’ recent jump into managing/promoting events at the theater brings the most optimism. That optimism, though, simply stems from the fact that A) they have experience putting on shows and B) they’ve brought the most action to the theater since its last heyday nearly 30 years ago. However, not all of the events they’ve thrown have appealed to the community, and some have found themselves frustrated by late-night / early-morning noise and other complaints. And this has happened before, too (pre-Pulsar).
The following is a Facebook post written by one of our readers, in which their complaints about recent activity in and around the theater are worth noting:
“I wanted to address this with the neighborhood since I see it as a nuisance. I am a musician and a very laid back person, but I am fed up with the Bob White Theater. Saturday (into Sunday) they held a rave that went until 5am. My son was up half the night, as was I. When I say “held a rave until 5am,” I literally mean the music was blasting until 5am. My husband checked with the city and that theater has no permit for anything even remotely resembling what took place last weekend. It’s been my experience as a neighbor of this establishment that they bend a lot of rules (with obtaining permits and violating noise laws) and attract patrons that smash glass in the street (and in my driveway), scream at each other until all hours, throw garbage everywhere, and drink outside of the venue (in the SEIU parking lot) and the establishment itself is NOT soundproofed and they have a tendency to leave doors open, etc. Anyway, I am pretty much completely over that place. I’ve tried to talk to the owner, and he is a dismissive jerk. He basically called me a liar when I cited specific examples of uncool behavior from the venue and its patrons. I would encourage people to PLEASE visit portlandonline.com/oni and visit the noise violation link. I would really appreciate it if the folks at the Bob White were made officially aware of how inappropriate they are.”
In their defense, the group currently running the theater recently met with the Foster-Powell Neighborhood Association to introduce themselves and solicit feedback from the community. At that meeting, they readily admitted there will be growing pains as they figure out how to manage large events at a neighborhood venue. They’ve also attempted to offer more variety than the EDM/rave-like shows currently dotting the event lineup. For example: Pulsar Sci-Fi Movie Club and a planned digital-gaming library, dubbed Game Genesis. It’s also very early to make any conclusions, good, bad, or otherwise.
Still, with all that being said, we thought we’d pose the question to you: are you satisfied with the Bob White’s most recent incarnation? Is it a good start? What more would you like to see?