We thought we’d tackle this piece with a short list: plenty of bars, plenty of food, plenty of rad people, and lots of promise. Boom, done.
But that doesn’t quite do Foster justice. And, well, there’s a lot about Foster we’re thankful for.
Sure, there are plenty of bars, but to gloss over them all without honoring their individual quirks and attributes wouldn’t be fair. We don’t have time for all that, though. Suffice to say, we like what most of you barkeeps and bar owners are doing. Keep doing what you do…we’re thankful.
As for the food—sure, “restaurant row” we are not. But we have some real winners. To name a few: An Xuyen, Foster Burger, Portland Mercado (take your pick), pizza at O’Malley’s, Bar Carlo, Nayar Taqueria, Henry Higgins Bagels, Torta-landia, Tambayan, Carts on Foster, and the limited but scrumptious offerings at NWIPA. (Special shout out to Midpoint Food and Drink, Siri Thai, and Arleta Library Bakery Cafe also.) We’re thankful for all of you servin’ up that tasty grub. We’re lazy and would much rather stay local when eating out.
But there’s more. We like coffee. Thanks, Pieper Cafe, for all you do. Kelsey and the girls make getting coffee more than just a caffeine fix. Thanks. Speedboat makes a mean cup of joe, too, as does Sandino Coffee Roaster at the Mercado. Cheers to caffeine.
Ok, now on to the good stuff.
We’re thankful for the rad people, the grit, and the quirky charm that makes Foster what it is. Fiddle-playing hen, dub-stepping sign-swinger, Crazy Eddie, tweakers, biker gangs, artists, neighborhood advocates, drunks and stumblers, new-type bourgeois, and all the sidewalk seating and bar patios that give us front row seats to it all. Thanks…you make Foster unique.
Laurelwood Park. Thanks for giving refuge to the kids from Mt. Scott Learning Center, those waiting for the 14-Hawthorne, the homeless, and those who just want to soak in the humm of traffic, sirens, and live music permeating from the bars, dance studios, and music venues nearby. We heart you.
We are also thankful for the small business owners who make Foster, well, kinda funky. Red Castle Games, Fat Yoga, Velvet Goldmine, the whole collective at Foster Row, Green Noise Records, the tattoo shops, SMART Collective, I Heart Retro, Backstory Books, and even the taxidermy shop and sketchy upholstery joints. (And that’s just a small taste.) We like you. Thanks for making Foster home.
Foster Streetscape Plan. We thank you for keeping us enticed and enraged and hopeful and involved and cautiously optimistic for the last several years. We hear you’re going to become a reality soon, not just a figment of our imagination and stubborn anticipation. Can’t wait to finally meet after hearing so much about you all these years.
See, there’s a lot to be thankful for. Foster’s like the gift that keeps on giving, even when you don’t want it to (see tweakers and biker gangs above, for example). But in all its grittiness and filth, there’s a charm that keeps us coming back for more. Venture into the neighborhoods, and you’ll find community gardens, little free libraries, and people who are actively making this area the place to be. They know what time it is. Thanks.
One more thing, though. We’re thankful for you, our readers, and those who share a similar love for Foster. It’s the one thing we all have in common. And in many ways, for better or worse, it’s what defines us as a neighborhood.
Happy Thanksgiving week, y’all.