Tag Archives: Vendor Profile

Vendor profile: Making a pitch for new beginnings

darrylgoeascopy_webBy Erin Fenner, Contributing Writer

Darryl Goeas, 48, is homeless for the first time in his life.

“It’s been kind of scary,” he said.

In August, he moved from Reno, his home for 13 years, looking for work. When a job fell through, he was left in Portland’s city center, not knowing where to sleep or how to stay safe. He was alone for two days before he met “Raider” Dave. Goeas told him that he didn’t have a place to sleep, and Dave took him back to his own spot next to the Wonder Ballroom. He met people there who he become friends with, and now considers family. Continue reading

Vendor profile: A man on the move

By Kara Dimitruk, Contributing Writer

Even though you may not recognize him, Kenny Chow isn’t exactly a new vendor. He gave Street Roots and Portland a try a few years ago. But it was in Seattle where he really earned his vending chops, working with Street Roots’ sister paper Real Change. He commuted between Salem and Seattle on weekends to be with his family.

His roots in Seattle are strong. There, Kenny built a rapport with his customers at Kirkland PCC, a natural foods grocery store, and he developed a camaraderie with the fellow vendors, enough to receive the honors of Vendor of the Week and then Vendor of the Year. “I had a good spot at Kirkland PCC. People know me. I walked into the store and was the man.” Continue reading

Vendor Profile: A good read and a little humor

By Kara Dimitruk, Contributing Writer

The intersection of Southwest Yamhill and Second Avenue is bustling with several active and colorful storefronts. The street rumbles with the noises of a local MAX stop, Portlanders taking lunch breaks, shoppers looking for a deal, and tourists enjoying a sunny day. Also at this corner is David Somers, a Street Roots vendor, smiling and exuding a sunny aura while selling the most recent Street Roots issue in front of the darkened windows of the old Borders facade. Continue reading

Vendor profile: A traveling poet finds a place in Portland

By Cole Merkel, Staff Writer

Like most Street Roots vendors, Harold Thompson has experienced poverty up close. In 30 years of traveling, he says he has visited all 50 states and has spent extended amounts of time in Los Angeles, Chicago and other major American cities with starkly disparate economic gaps. What sets him apart from most other vendors, though, is that Harold has lived in a place with the most severely entrenched poverty in the United States. Harold is Native American — mostly Sioux, part Chippewa — and spent many years of his life on the Sisseton Reservation in South Dakota. Continue reading

Vendor Profile: ‘There’s room for everything’

By Cole Merkel, Contributing Writer

Jonathan Cornelison is not a typical street artist. He seamlessly blurs the boundaries between traditional art, psychedelic imagery, painting, drawing, graffiti and, when he can, teaching. At 26 years old, Jonathan has already produced an impressive body of work with a unique style that incorporates the natural environment, the supernatural and the universal realities of human existence: death, life, love. Continue reading

A positive outlook, good turf keep vendor smiling

By Cole Merkel, Contributing Writer

Nestled in the Park Blocks two streets west of the always busy stretch of Southwest Broadway, is a hidden gem of a vendor location: Starbucks at Southwest 9th and Taylor. It’s quieter here than most places downtown, and on sunny days, as people relax at outdoor tables sipping java with dogs at their feet, the location feels more like a European street corner than the stoop of a typical American coffee chain. Continue reading

Vendor profile: A New York state of mind

By Cole Merkel, Contributing Writer

Earl Bennett speaks frankly about homelessness, poverty, the American government and the need for social change. Perhaps he derives these perspectives from a lifetime of living in large and diverse cities, or maybe they come from a synthesis of the many publications Earl reads each week. Either way, his blend of self-assurance and optimism feels refreshing during our 20-minute conversation over a cup of coffee. Continue reading