Why Portland?

SAA Executive Director Nancy Beaumont

There are so many reasons “Why Portland”!

It started with our ongoing commitment to rotate the SAA Annual Meeting around the country to make it accessible to all members. It was influenced by the 2013 Annual Meeting Task Force’s recommendation to experiment with convention centers in smaller cities. TravelPortland responded to our RFP with a proposal that made it possible to meet in the Oregon Convention Center without breaking the bank on meeting room rental. And since then we’ve learned more about the city:

  • Portland has often been touted as the “Greenest City in America”—and the Oregon Convention Center, which is LEEDR Silver certified, emphasizes sustainable meeting options.
  • It offers tax-free shopping at boutiques, local markets, and the world’s largest independent bookstore, Powell’s Books.
  • Its diverse neighborhoods abound with vibrant coffee shops, brewpubs, and sidewalk dining. And, oh, the donuts! Try my favorite: Blue Star. (A blueberry-bourbon-basil donut, really?)
  • It’s easy and inexpensive to get around via Portland’s TriMet buses and MAX light rail. It’s a pedestrian-friendly city. And Portland International Airport (PDX), located 9 miles northeast of downtown Portland, is conveniently connected to the city center via MAX. The trip takes about 38 minutes and costs $2.50.
  • It has many acclaimed parks and gardens, including the International Rose Test Garden, Japanese Garden, Classical Chinese Garden, Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Forest Park, and Mill Ends Park.
  • If you’re planning a side trip, within two hours you can enjoy year-round skiing on Mount Hood, gorgeous vistas and hiking opportunities in the Columbia River Gorge, Willamette Valley’s world-class wine country, and the scenic towns and beaches of Oregon’s rugged coast.

An article in the January 8 The New York Times travel section named Portland among its “52 Places to Go in 2017”—along with Marrakesh, Great Barrier Reef, and Budapest. And in the category of “Nancy’s dumb luck”: The 30th Annual Oregon Brewers Festival will be held July 26-30 at Tom McCall Waterfront Park on the banks of the Willamette River, just blocks from the Hilton Portland & Executive Tower (our headquarters hotel). Imagine:  More than 80 independent craft beers in one place at one time! ARCHIVES 2017: alike/different is aptly named, as you’ll find many of the same great opportunities to learn and interact that you’re accustomed to from SAA conferences. AND we’re shaking up the schedule a bit to accommodate great ideas from the 2017 Program Committee and individual members.  Watch for the full schedule when registration goes live on April 3, but in the meantime, start making plans:

Sunday, July 23: Full-day pre-conference courses on Tool Selection and Management: Finding the Right Tool for the Job and Implementing “More Product, Less Process.”

Monday, July 24: Full-day pre-conference courses on MARC for Archival Description, Tool Integration: From Pre-SIP to DIP, and Arrangement and Description of Electronic Records, Part 1.

Tuesday, July 25: SAA’s 11th Annual Research Forum + four full-day pre-conference courses (Arrangement and Description of Electronic Records, Part 2, Arranging and Describing Photographs, Visual Materials: Born Digital, and Teaching with Primary Resources) + SAA appointed group meetings + repository tours and open houses.

Wednesday, July 26:  Day 1 of the conference features lots of SAA appointed group meetings + the Leadership Orientation and Forum + two blocks of section meetings + (and this is NEW) the Opening Plenary + the All-Attendee Reception.

Thursday, July 27:  Day 2 features two education session blocks + noontime forums + one block of section meetings + Plenary 2 (the presidential address) + the Expo Hall grand opening/reception + the Oregon Brewers Festival (on your own).

Friday, July 28:  Day 3 features three education session blocks + professional and graduate student posters + Expo Hall coffee break, lunch, and closing break + the Annual Membership Meeting + the Oregon Brewers Festival (on your own).

Saturday, July 29:  Day 4 is all new! This full-day forum on community archiving (“The Liberated Archive”) brings together members of the archives community and the Portland community to learn from each other via a plenary session, panel presentations, and an afternoon unconference. Watch the conference website for more information!

So we hope you’ll come for the learning + connections – and stay for the many delights of Portland!

Annual Meeting referenced: 

SAA thanks the following Sponsors for their generous support!