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Dear Venture Portland Community,

I feel like I say this every week but . . . what a week! Have you ever walked onto the floor of a Pachinko parlor? The sound of a million pachinko balls bouncing and dinging and triggering light shows combines for a sort of full spectrum onslaught of the senses. Overwhelming, for sure. Just being alive right now sometimes feels like stepping into that parlor. Being a small business owner, with so many competing priorities like staffing decisions, covering rent and the constant pivot due to Covid-19 is a whole other overload in itself. I think that’s why it’s helpful for business owners to get involved in their neighborhood business community. When we’re feeling alone and overwhelmed, when everything feels tough, it helps to know that there’s a business network to turn to  and to remember that we’re all going through this “new normal” together.
For those times when you want to reach out for hope, answers and connection, we’re launching a segment called “Just Ask Joy”. If you have a question large, small, or inconsequential about small business/business district, email me at joy@ventureportland.org with the subject line “Just Ask Joy”.
Although I surely won’t have all the answers, I’m good at researching and love small business trivia! I’ll do my best to answer questions in a timely manner. 🤞
 Design by @DrawnHungry
Dear Joy:
I've noticed recently that several parts of the city have new murals and some have paintings, actually *on* the street. How can the business district that I volunteer with get in on this?
-Public Art Lover
See the answer on ventureportland.org!
It seems like social change always introduces a lot of new language. New ideas demand new words, and a word that used to be academic jargon gets launched into the mainstream. Ten years ago which of us knew what “intersectionality“ was? Now “equity” is ubiquitous, and it gets at an important concept, but how is it different from “equality?” This explainer is valuable and timely.
Thanks to everyone who joined us for this week’s webinar on BDA Membership! You can see how other districts are handling membership and pick up a few tips to take home here.
In celebration of Women’s Equality Day (August 26th), we wrote up some of our favorite women-owned businesses.
This Go By Greenways scavenger hunt seems like a fun adventure for kids and families, and I love an excuse to explore new parts of the city.
The second episode of the Small Business Portland Podcast is up! I’m joined by Helen Ying, Chair of the Old Town Community Association, and Jessie Burke, owner of the Society Hotel and OTCA Board Member, to discuss the situation in Old Town amidst pandemic, street demonstrations, housing crises and more.
That’s all for now. Here’s what’s happening this week! 


Let’s take a collective deep breath and have a great weekend!
-Joy Church and Liz Smith, Venture Portland’s Executive Director and Board President 

Since 1986, Venture Portland has supported Portland's unique and thriving neighborhood business districts through grants, training and technical assistance.
503.477.9648 | 503.477.9641 fax
1125 SE Madison St, Suite 112 | Portland, OR 97214

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