Updated Info: We Have Dates for Leaguefest 2016!!!

Tod Kelly

Tod is a writer from the Pacific Northwest. He is also serves as Executive Producer and host of both the 7 Deadly Sins Show at Portland's historic Mission Theatre and 7DS: Pants On Fire! at the White Eagle Hotel & Saloon. He is  a regular inactive for Marie Claire International and the Daily Beast, and is currently writing a book on the sudden rise of exorcisms in the United States. Follow him on Twitter.

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94 Responses

  1. Maribou says:

    When Jay and I travel my big question is always public transit vs renting a car. Depending on the day, I may be super-mobile or more sluglike, so public transit is my preference. And given the mobility issue I tend to prefer public transit where I’m not going to be standing for long periods all the time, though minor amounts of standing are fine.

    Thoughts on this? How easy would it be, just to pick a hypothetical, to get from Crystal Hotel to the dinner location? Are there better or worse hotels on your list for public transit purposes? Is public transit hopeless (like it would be in COS), all-effective (think Montreal or to a lesser degree Seattle), or somewhere in the middle? Etc?Report

    • North in reply to Maribou says:

      I’ve heard the uber coverage in Portland is especially good and when I visited there the busses and trams were everywhere in downtown.Report

    • Tod Kelly in reply to Maribou says:

      There is a lot of PT in portland. That said, it kind of goes out from a hub. Meaning that you can get from point A to point B quickly and easily — but that it might take several buses/light rails and a long time to get from point A to point C or D.

      The hotels nearest downtown are the best for PT, because that’s the center of the hub. If you are going all PT, the Crystal is a great choice.

      If we can get people w/out rental relatively close to one another, my thought is to have people shuttle in and pick them up for dinner at my place. You can get here by PT, but it’s a little complicated and I’d rather arrange for everyone to just have fun that evening.Report

      • Maribou in reply to Tod Kelly says:

        That makes sense – the hopeful shuttle plan.

        We also don’t really have a problem with renting a car, just considering options.

        It won’t be the dealbreaker about whether we come or not. Basically just waiting for the ok from Jay’s work at this point.Report

    • Burt Likko in reply to Maribou says:

      If you feel sluglike, there’s Uber.

      I sure hope I get to visit with you and @jaybird again — it’s been too long since Las Vegas!Report

  2. North says:

    Husband is talking like a crazy man about quitting his job to make a fulltime run at programming career so finances have suddenly become… fluid… but I will definitely try to make it.Report

  3. greginak says:

    Oh well. It would have been fun to be there. I’ll be down the coast in San Fran running a marathon that weekend. I didn’t really think i had any open travel slots over the summer in any case. Another time i guess ( anchorage is great in the winter). Pix would be fun for those of us not present.Report

  4. Kazzy says:

    This date is definitely possible though it likely entails wee ones. With this in mind, it’d probably be wisest for me to fly in early Saturday and red eye out on Sunday. Does the offer to have a slightly-less-wee Kelly babysit the uber-wee Kazzys during dinner on Saturday still stand? I’d probably be down to tote them around to any moderately kid-friendly sight seeing/exploring folks were up for Saturday and Sunday during the daylight hours.

    Anyone else thinking of bringing their spawn?Report

  5. Burt Likko says:

    I am very much looking forward to this. If you’ve not yet had the pleasure, Portland is a thoroughly awesome place to visit, and should make it a point to come if only for that.

    Then, of course, there’s the opportunity to meet up in real life with those with whom you’ve shared ideas in our online community, which is something very special, fun, and unique to us.

    I hope to meet as many of you as possible.Report

  6. Burt Likko says:

    I should also add that a colleague just got a great deal through Groupon at one of Hotel Monaco or Hotel Lucia for a trip she’s taking with her family. Don’t know how long that will be available.Report

  7. aaron david says:

    This sounds good, and as of now (no idea what the future holds…) I should be there! I would probably drive, as its only 9 or so hours from my place, so only one stop for gas and we are golden.

    Oh, and I have been to the bar under the Crystal and it is pert cool.Report

  8. Saul Degraw says:

    Potentially. My recent lay off might raise cash issues.Report

  9. Slade the Leveller says:

    @tod-kelly Know anything about the McMenamin’s White Eagle? Decent neighborhood? Near anything?

    Also, what about the bike share program? The website says open July 2016. I presume Portland is bike friendly, but what about distances?

    Really looking forward to this. And to shooting up to Victoria after, to visit an old friend.Report

    • @slade-the-leveller The White Eagle is a little different from the other hotels. Personally, I love it — but it’s not for everyone. The rooms are very small, like something from a ship — which doesn’t really bother me. The big thing for some people is that it’s over the White Eagle Bar, which features bands every weekend. The music is really good, but if you go to bed before 1:00 or 2:00 you might have to hear the thumping bass coming through the pillow.

      The neighborhood is good, though your choices of what to do around the hotel are limited. A lot of great restaurants and cocktail lounges have popped up there over the past few years, most of them within a two block radius. Other than that, though, there’s not a lot going on. Mostly light industrial businesses and residential.Report

  10. Maribou says:

    Crystal is sold out for those dates.

    We got a really great package deal for staying at the Nines (plus my gut is saying STAY AT THE NINES THOSE TUBS WILL MAKE YOU SO HAPPY), so that’s where we’re staying. About 1/2 mile from Powell’s near Pioneer Square.

    We get in at a reasonable evening time on Friday, have to leave WAY too early on Sunday but at least that will put us in our beds at a good time on Sunday night for work on Monday.

    Any interest from folks in going to the Market Saturday morning? Is the market even open yet for the season? Is the market any good??? *to the googles* (and awaiting Tod’s opinion)Report

    • Maribou in reply to Maribou says:

      (as an indicator of how good the deal was: our flight + hotel will be cheaper than when Leaguefest was in Vegas. And Vegas is usually the cheapest place for us to fly/stay in a hotel…)Report

    • Tod Kelly in reply to Maribou says:

      Nines is good too!Report

      • Maribou in reply to Tod Kelly says:

        @tod-kelly thoughts on the saturday market? looks like it’s mostly crafts / lunch rather than fruit/veg? (in which case the siren call of powells or just poking around may be more appealing)Report

        • Miss Mary in reply to Maribou says:

          I recommend checking out Saturday Market. (Still call it that even though it’s all weekend) There’s lots of fun art, shopping, food and performance artists hanging out. In July they’ll have the fountain on so you can watch all of the kids splash about. They only close like three loathsome out of the year. December they’re open for holiday shopping!

          If you want mostly produce, I recommend the Portland State University farmer’s market.Report

        • Burt Likko in reply to Maribou says:

          When I was in PDX before I thought the Saturday market was space awesome. Liked it better than the bookstore, which I liked a lot.Report

        • Tod Kelly in reply to Maribou says:

          @maribou Yeah, the Saturday Market is more crafts and prepared foods. There aren’t really farmer stands there.

          However, if you are looking for more of a Farmers Market, there’s on on Saturday mornings that’s within walking distance of the Nines, over at Portland State. (There are actually a bunch that go on over the weekend, but that is that one you can easily walk to. If you have a car and want to try different ones, that website has most of them.)Report

  11. Damon says:

    Ah Portland. Hell, I’d want to go back to the Clackamus town center just to tour the old stomping gounds. Sadly, vacation time is already obligated. Yall have fun now.Report

  12. Vikram Bath says:

    So, what does July 29-31 mean precisely? Should we come in on the 28th so we can get started before dawn on the 29th? Because that will be when we East coast will be up and ready.

    Similarly, will people be leaving on the 31st or on the next day?

    Also, regarding hotels, I think we ought to post a poll. To be honest, I don’t want to be in the coolest hotel in the coolest area of Portland. I want to be where everyone else is.Report

    • aaron david in reply to Vikram Bath says:

      Well, @vikram-bath I am staying at the Rodeway, so you got that going for you, which is nice…Report

    • Burt Likko in reply to Vikram Bath says:

      My flight lands in the late morning on the 29th, and we’re flying out in the early evening of the 31st. Of course, it’s only a two-hour flight back home for us; folks coming in from greater distances will need to modify their plans accordingly.Report

    • Tod Kelly in reply to Vikram Bath says:

      @vikram-bath If it’s like every other LF in the past, “July 29-31” will mean very little other than giving everyone a specific weekend to shoot for.

      If people want to come in earlier than Friday, I will absolutely organize stuff to do on Thursday, or even Wed night. Same deal with Sunday night or Monday for people wanting to stay later. In the past, we’ve always had a few people come in Wed or Thurs and both connect with others and do stuff on their own, and had folks that left later than everyone else on the other end and did things in small groups late Sunday or Monday. In fact, I really recommend coming in at least as early as Thursday if you can swing the time and money, because there’s too much of Portland to do in just a day and a half.

      As to the Rodeway, it’s not bad, especially for the price. It used to be a Shilo, which is kind of an in-between moderate and mid-upper-tier priced chain. The one potential drawback is that it isn’t really near much that’s interesting, unless you love looking at mile os car dealerships. So I would recommend it for those who, like @aaron-david , will have access to a car (either their own or rented).Report

  13. Miss Mary says:

    I can’t believe people aren’t staying at McMenamins! I get that Maribou says Crystal is full, but there are so many good ones to choose from. I stay at a McMenamins any time I’m driving into the city and want to crash for the night or a spoil me weekend. I love the food and drinks that you can find at any of their hotels. Try the vegan hemp burger! You *will* love it.Report

    • Maribou in reply to Miss Mary says:

      My deal with the Nines was 1) whoa price cut and 2) THEY HAVE A LIBRARY BAR. A. Library. Bar. Basically Maribous cannot resist the second of those two things.

      Otherwise I would’ve totally stayed at another McMenamins; they look chill.Report

      • Miss Mary in reply to Maribou says:

        There’s a McMenamins east of the city that has a library right above the wine bar. I get everything I need at the wine bar and head upstairs. What is it that makes booze and books go so well together?Report

  14. Zac says:

    Sixty-five bucks a night at the Rodeway? Yeah, I think I can swing that for a couple nights. I’ll start setting aside tips now for a Leaguefest fund.Report

  15. Roland Dodds says:

    I will be there for the dinner Saturday. Is this the kind of thing that I can bring my wife and child to?Report

  16. Maribou says:

    There are many reasons why I have been wishing it would just hurry up and be July already this week, and Leaguefest is the only FUN one.


  17. Miss Mary says:


    Totally warranted all caps and three exclamation points. I might be slightly obsessed with finding fun things to do for Leaguefest in my down time. 🙂Report

  18. Burt Likko says:

    Mrs. Likko and I are very much looking forward to meeting you all, and sampling the great food and beer and wine, and enjoying the uber-wonderful city of Portland Oregon once more!

    If you’ve not been to Portland, this is a great excuse to go and learn about one of the most remarkable of the many remarkable American communities.

    If you’ve not been to a Leaguefest, but enjoy the writing, commentary, and thought shared here at Ordinary Times, it’s well, well worth your time. No one has ever been a raging asshole and it’s remarkable how much it feels like a gathering of old friends: even though many will be meeting in person for the very first time, there is a great familiarity and comfort in it because we so often exchange our ideas and thoughts here on these pages.

    See you all in Portland!Report

  19. I also booked a cheap hotel for Friday and Saturday nights, and am planing to drive up on Friday (possibly carpooling with aaron david.)Report

  20. Brandon Berg says:

    We Have Dates for Leaguefest 2016!!!

    One exclamation mark would have been sufficient. No need to rub it in the faces of us single folks.Report

  21. North says:

    I can’t make it. Am so sad. But I want regular updates and stories!Report

  22. Oscar Gordon says:

    I will be in WI that week, visiting family and taking bug to EAA. I’m sorry I’ll have to miss it, especially given the proximity.Report

  23. Miss Mary says:

    1. You couldn’t keep me away even if you tried.
    2. I’ll be here for the entirety since I live here!!!
    3. So attending! No dietary restrictions.
    4. My six year old son may or may not attend, so no need to plan around him.

    If you’re going to do a post each week about fun stuff to do, can I help with content?!

    “If you haven’t been to a Leaguefest, I want to encourage you to come this year.” I wholeheartedly second this. You must come visit! Portland is awesome and everyone I’ve ever met at Leaguefest is awesome. I hardly participate and they all welcomed me with open arms. If I can fly from Portland to Chicago *and* DC to meet up with a bunch of strangers I met on the internet, than so can you!Report

  24. Michelle says:

    Love Portland, and would love to come to another Leaguefest, but the costs of flying in from NC might be prohibitive. We used to have an old friend we stayed with when we came down from Seattle, but he’s since unfriended both me and the Russian on FB. Because politics.Report

    • Burt Likko in reply to Michelle says:


      Boo to no Michelle and the Russian. I enjoyed meeting you in Chicago immensely.

      And boo to losing a friend to politics. What a silly reason to lose a friend!Report

      • Michelle in reply to Burt Likko says:

        I know, right? But between too much wine and rightwing media, he’s become convinced I have the power to brainwash. As if. He’s a crazy Russian.Report

      • Michelle in reply to Burt Likko says:

        Hmm. Cheaper than I thought if I fly into Seattle and then tack on a visit to the parents in San Diego. Having done Greensboro to the West Coast, there’s no point enduring the royal pain of cross-country air travel unless you stay a few days. Guess I’ll be talking to the parental units and my friends in Seattle this weekend.Report

  25. Maribou says:

    1. We are definitely coming. Tickets have been bought. (I am answering for me + Jaybird, if this wasn’t obvious.)

    2. Purportedly, we land around 5pm on Friday and have to be at the airport at like 4am Sunday morning.

    3. Jaybird has no particular dietary restrictions. I have several. Long version: allergic to onions, even onion powder, shallots, green onion tops, etc (not as far as I can tell leeks or garlic, though I’m getting more sensitive slowly…) (but love onions and could be swayed to accept the hives and sleepiness, and eat them anyway – i manage my onion allergy rather than kowtowing to it). allergic to pepper (black/white/etc not bell/jalapeno/etc), processed cheese (eg american), and mayo/ranch/etc type dressings if they are at all commercial (not allergic to fresh from scratch preparations of such for some mysterious reason probably involving a food additive; not allergic to coleslaw I have NOOOO idea why- maybe the vinegar??): these three allergies will cause some combination of throat swelling, tongue swelling, breathing issues, and/or projectile vomiting – though never to the point of anaphylactic shock so far, thank goodness – so I REALLY want to avoid those things. And they tend to get snuck into stuff (at least the pepper and mayo do), so must be watched for. tl;dr: onions, processed cheese, black/white/etc pepper, mayo, ranch. It’s possible there’s other stuff I can’t eat that I just rarely encounter & thus forgot, but ifso it’s most likely easy to avoid.

    4. We have no younguns nor will we be bringing any cats;).Report

    • Maribou in reply to Maribou says:

      3. addendum Blue cheese! blue cheese is not a good thing for me at all. (Which is weird, at one point I hated it, then grew to love it, then BAM, one day I could not eat it without barfing and have since grown to be revulsed by it. My body is so strange.)Report

      • Maribou in reply to Maribou says:

        3. addenda Olives! Olives and olive tapenades and such will spoil any dish for me or Jay, although if we can fish them out (eg salad) we will be fine. Also olive oil is more than fine, it is marvelous. (It’s not an allergy, just one of those “do you really want me to throw up?” things.) For me, green olives are barely-edible-if-must-or-by-accident, black are just not on ever. Jaybird is equally revolted by either type.
        Also, I am subject to major major pain if I ingest overly much nuts, chocolate, or caffeine, though that is more of a management thing… I adore all three of those things, so will cheat here and there and then take painkillers later. So I guess that one doesn’t even really matter, unless you were planning a mole chicken main dish, with candied walnuts and mocha ice cream for dessert, or something. (*sighs wistfully, thinking of mole chicken followed by mocha ice cream*)

        (I am beginning to wonder how I ever eat anywhere other than my own darn house. Sorry to have so many things.)Report

  26. Slade the Leveller says:

    1. I am in. Stag.
    2. Hopeful to land at PDX sometime Friday, but I won’t know for sure until the last minute as I’ll be flying standby. If that changes, I’ll let you know.
    3. No food restrictions. I’ll bring a bottle of the exquisite Small’s gin to add to the party. You Oregonians are so lucky to have this stuff nearby. It’s available here in Chicago, but only sporadically.
    4. No kids.

    I’d really like to catch some live music, if possible, but really I’m just looking forward to putting faces to names.Report

  27. Is anyone else up for a field trip to Powell’s Books?Report

  28. Vikram Bath says:

    1. I’m definitely coming.
    2. Arriving at PDX 1 PM Thursday. Leaving at Midnight on Sunday.
    3. Oh, dear. I’m vegetarian. Please don’t make any significant portion of your plans revolve around me though. Remember I’m the guy who wrote a post that said people should be happy with a sweet potato, which I’ve since discovered can even be cooked in the microwave.
    4. I’d love to bring the better and littlest Bath, but I can’t.Report

  29. I’ll probably show up for at least some of it. The 31st is my birthday, so that day is scheduled for a nice long ride in the country, but I’m sure I can meet up for /something/ on the 29th-30th (Portland resident, so vegan.)Report