Portland Advice: Hotels and Accommodations

Portland Advice: Hotels and Accommodations

Hopefully you’ve already booked your accommodations for NCECA, as many hotels are already booked up.  In case you haven’t, or in case you’re looking for alternatives, this article will provide you with some ideas and information.

The first thing to understand is that the Oregon Convention Center (OCC) is located on the East side of the Willamette River, just across the water from downtown Portland.  The area adjacent to the OCC is sometimes called Lloyd District after the nearby shopping mall. This area includes a bunch of big chain hotels in the $150 to $300/night range, including a Marriott Courtyard, a Crowne Plaza, a Quality Inn, a Doubletree, a Hyatt and similar.  These hotels are pretty much what you’d expect from their national chains.

At this point, to stay in this area you’re going to be booking what you can get.  Still, it pays to check online reviews on Yelp and TripAdvisor; a few of the hotels near OCC have unsavory reputations, and those generally still have rooms available.  In contrast, the Hotel Eastlund is brand-new.  Do note that even the hotels in Lloyd District can be up to 1/2 mile from the OCC, so you should bring a handcart if you have to lug show gear from your hotel to the conference.  Also, check on your hotel’s breakfast options, as other places for breakfast in or near the OCC are limited.

As an alternative, almost any accommodation near the MAX train lines is going to be less than half an hour away from the OCC, 16 hours a day.  So if you’re on a budget or looking for special accommodations, consider staying further out from downtown but near a train.  For example, there are quite inexpensive hotels near the 82nd Ave. MAX Station, for those willing to put up with a very “seedy” neighborhood to save money.  However, due to a roundabout route, hotels near the airport are a bit too far away. In more upscale options, there are some nice B&Bs on the East side of Lloyd Center Mall, such as the Lion and Rose.

Going Westward, the hotels of downtown are available to you, just five to ten minutes on a train across the bridge (which is also walkable if you don’t mind long walks).  Several of these are mentioned on the NCECA website.  While unlikely to be cheaper than staying close to the OCC, they may have more available rooms, and a few may have special deals. One spendy hotel I’ll mention on the other side of downtown, just because it’s spectacular, is Hotel Deluxe.

Portland also has a large number of properties listed with AirBnB and VRBO.  These would enable you to rent a flat, apartment, or similar property, allowing you to house groups and save on meals by cooking.  While these rental services are controversial politically, they may be your best option, especially if traveling with a family or pets.  Do make sure to read reviews before booking these, since they are not hotels, and quality can vary a great deal.  Also, check the transportation options from your rental property to the OCC carefully before booking.  For example, while there are a lot of nice AirBnBs in the charming Alberta Street or Hawthorne neighborhoods, getting to the OCC from there will generally involve a long ride in a car or a cab (spendy either way).

Next week, we’ll cover your Portland transportation options.

Mentors Needed for Student Critique Room!

Mentors Needed for Student Critique Room!

Are you an artist or ceramics professor just itching to give back?  The Student Critique Room is ready for YOU! We are currently looking for people to volunteer an hour or two of their conference time to do several 30-minute critiques with eager students!  The Critique Room gives students the opportunity to receive direct feedback about their work from a professional in the field.

The student critique room will be open Thursday and Friday March 22-25, 2017 from 9:00 am – 4:30 pm in room in room C124 of the Oregon Convention Center in Portland.

It is easy to sign up, Click Here for more information and to see a list of time slots available.

If you are interested in participating, but have questions, please contact NCECA Student Director at Large Naomi Clement at naominceca@gmail.com.

Sign up for a shift (or 3) and change a student’s life!

Student Fellowship Application Deadline Oct. 19!

Student Fellowship Application Deadline Oct. 19!

Attention All Students:

The deadline is fast approaching for you to submit your application for both the Regina Brown Undergraduate Student Fellowship, and the NCECA Graduate Student Fellowship! Successful undergraduate applicants will be awarded $1,800 for use towards their proposed research project, and successful graduate applicants $2,000 (funds may not be put towards payment of tuition).  Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to receive funding to pursue your research.

Applications for both awards (including all Letters of Recommendation!) must be submitted October 19, 2016 (11:59pm EDT).

Learn more about the Regina Brown Undergraduate Student Fellowship.

Learn more about the NCECA Graduate Student Fellowship.



Greetings NCECA Pals!

The NCECA Portland Team has been working hard to make our 2017 conference good and sustainable and we want you to go green with us!

Check it out:

Ideas for lessening your personal conference footprint this NCECA:

1) Take the MAX to and from the airport. There’s a MAX station right outside the doors of the Portland International Airport. The train is speedy and scenic and will take you right into the center of Portland (or wherever else you’re going) and you can just as easily take it back when the conference is over! Public transit is a great way to minimize your use of fossil fuels!


2) Take Public Transit the whole time you’re here! Every person who registers for the full conference will get a Portland Public Transit Pass for the duration of the conference! Many of the off-site exhibitions will be walk-able or easily accessible by public transit and there’s even this handy dandy Transit Tracker App you can download for your smart phone. Do we have you covered, or do we have you covered?


3) Check out Portland’s shiny new bike-share program, BikeTown. The program has 1,000 bikes and 100 stations across the city. You can purchase a single ride for $2.50, or a day pass for $12 and show up to the off-site exhibitions in style (the bikes are orange, plan your outfits accordingly). And of course there’s a fancy app you can use to make purchases and locate stations. Make sure to pack a helmet if you plan on biking around this NCECA– the bike rental doesn’t come with one and we want your noggin safe!

New Policies for a Greener Conference in 2017: 

The Oregon Convention Center and the city of Portland have shown leadership in concerns of environmental sustainability. A recently updated waste management policy in the convention center prohibits single-use plastic bags, foam core (for signage), and other environmentally unsustainable materials. If you are planning to bring promotional materials to the conference, NCECA wants you to know early on that at our Spring 2016 board meeting we determined to establish some reasonable limits on how and how much paper promotional material will be permitted in the convention center. Rather than in hallways, there will be a designated space for free distribution of promotional materials within the Reading Room. The area will be maintained by a volunteer, and attendees will be limited to distributing no more than 500 pieces per conference. Anyone wishing to distribute materials more broadly might consider a bag insert with NCECA, details can be found here.

And be sure to check out https://www.oregoncc.org/about/sustainability for more info on the Portland Convention Center’s sustainability and waste diversion policies.

Yay GreeNCECA!

STUDENTS – Apply Now!

STUDENTS – Apply Now!

NSJE application deadline is September 28th

Are you a current undergraduate, graduate, or post-bac STUDENT?

Stop procrastinating, and apply now for the National Student Juried Exhibition! This year’s exhibition will be held in conjunction with the 2017 conference Future Flux at the Hoffman Gallery at Oregon College of Art and Craft, March 4 – 28, 2017.

Take the opportunity to have your work viewed by this year’s jurors, Linda Arbuckle and Justin Novak.  Last years exhibition featured works by 56 artists including graduate, undergraduate and post-bac students.  In addition to the opportunity to showcase your work on a national stage the NSJE also features over a dozen awards.

The process is easy; simply follow this link for the application guidelines.  Apply HERE!

The deadline is SEPTEMBER 28, 2016!!!

Questions? Just ask!

Shalya Marsh, Student Director at Large – shalyamarshnceca@gmail.com

Naomi Clement, Student Director at Large – naominceca@gmail.com



Future Flux, the 51st Annual NCECA Conference takes place in Portland, Oregon March 22-25, 2017

Deadline for Programming Proposals: May 4, 2016, 11:59pm MST.

In less than a week the call for programming proposals for Future Flux in Portland will close. Much of the conference’s programming is member generated. That means you get to help create the conference you want!

Have you been wishing that a certain topic would be addressed in a panel or lecture?

Do you know someone who has been doing great research into a ceramics related topic?

Then you should consider sending us a proposal for NCECA’s 51st annual conference. NCECA is seeking proposals for lectures, co-lectures, and panel discussions on clay, teaching, and learning in relation to the theme of Future Flux, as well as those pertinent to the Portland, Oregon region. Submissions are evaluated by the entire NCECA board and are selected based on their relationship to the theme, relevancy to our field, presenter(s) depth of knowledge, and the general interest in providing a balanced and inclusive program for the conference.

Proposals should correspond with at least one of the following program strands:

  • Aesthetics, Criticism, Theory and Practice, including presentations about concepts of beauty and value, art attitudes, art in society, content and interpretation, analysis and evaluation.
  • Art History, including presentations about traditional and non-traditional artists and movements, styles, surveys of regional, national and international art in clay.
  • Education, including presentations about traditional and non-traditional curricula, goals, standards, methods and pedagogy including but not limited to those that advance knowledge and awareness of environmental concerns.
  • Professional Practices, including presentations about working standards, goals, methods, and attitudes or, the professional working relationships of guilds, co-ops and other ceramic centers.
  • Technology and Sustainability, presentations about traditional and non-traditional materials, processes, kilns, equipment, including but not limited to those that mitigate adverse environmental impact through innovations in sustainable systems and practices.

Click here for detailed submission guidelines.