By Ted Perkins
with photos by Jane Perkins
Smack in the center of Northeast Portland, the Roseway neighborhood is bordered by the Rose City Park, Beaumont-Wilshire, Cully, Sumner and Madison South neighborhoods.
Platted in 1911, the neighborhood stretches from roughly Northeast 62nd to Northeast 82nd Avenue between Fremont and Sacramento streets. Its commercial district lies mostly along a few stretches of Fremont Street and Sandy Boulevard, which cuts through the neighborhood diagonally and serves as a community gathering space. Sandy’s diagonal orientation impacts the boulevard’s unique mid-century architecture by carving out irregular triangle-shaped lots that offer a host of uncommon restaurants, bars, coffee shops and retail outlets – many with an international flavor. The neighborhood’s commercial district was formerly known as the Portland International District and continues to embrace the many cultures that have launched businesses there throughout its history.
The historic Roseway Theater anchors the heart of the neighborhood at Northeast 72nd and Sandy and was thoroughly restored in 2008. The theater blends its original Art Deco architecture with state-of-the-art projection and sound equipment and has become a popular date-night attraction for the many young families that are now flocking to the neighborhood.
There are two large parks in Roseway. Glenhaven Park, acquired by the city in 1948, offers sports fields, playgrounds, picnic areas and a skate park. Wellington Park, acquired by the city in 1941, has a brand new playground and soccer field along with lighted pathways for walkers, joggers, and bikers. Rose City Golf Course lies just to the south of Roseway, below Sacramento Street and east of Rose City Park.
There are three public schools located within or adjacent to the Roseway neighborhood. These schools are Harvey Scott, Roseway Heights and Madison High School. The Gregory Heights branch of the Multnomah County Library is a beacon of activity at Northeast 79th and Sandy.
Homes in Roseway tend to be small or mid-sized and somewhat affordable compared to surrounding neighborhoods. Nearly all of the houses were built in the first half of the 20th century, with a flood of newer homes now being added to the mix.
Many neighbors choose to live in Roseway because it still feels like a classic and traditional Northeast Portland neighborhood, while its business district nurtures the roots of the diverse cultures that have grown and thrived there. For more information, visit www.roseway.org.
There’s a lot to love in Roseway. Here are a few favorites:
Classic old-school donut joint, housed in a former Winchell’s building from the 1970s. Locally-owned with fast, friendly service and great donuts, baked fresh daily. No long lines or silly, touristy frills.
Address: 3449 N.E. 72nd Ave. Phone: 503-284-2752. Web: www.facebook.com/annies. Don’t miss: The Buttermilk Bar is rich without being too heavy, and the taste is simple but perfect.
Ohana Hawaiian Cafe
Matt and Sandie Ho’s vibrant spot for authentic Hawaiian dishes, like Huli Chicken and Kalua Pig with classic sides and desserts, has been a neighborhood go-to since 2005, with friendly “island” service and reasonable prices.
Address: 6320 N.E. Sandy Blvd. Phone: 503-335-5800. Web: www.ohanahawaiiancafe.com. Don’t miss: Arguably the best desserts in the neighborhood, if not the entire city, all are exceptional but the Lilikoi Dream Cake with passion fruit mousse is truly amazing.
Casual Vietnamese restaurant in a contemporary space with traditional accents and over 100 freshly-prepared menu items to choose from. Dine in or to go.
Address: 6120 N.E. Sandy Blvd. Phone: 503-281-0215. Web: www.phocorner.com. Don’t miss: C15 Pho Tai Ve Don beef noodle soup with top round steak and skirt flank. The Salad Rolls are excellent too.
Dr. Tongue’s I Had That Shoppe
Mark Pederson’s wild and weird toy shop is a destination for collectors from around the globe, specializing in the stuff your mother threw away, with vintage character toys and collectibles from the early 50s to the 90s. Also offering vintage cocktail gear and retro, decorative items.
Address: 7129 N.E. Fremont St. Phone: 503-893-1991. Web: www.drtonguetoys.com. Don’t miss: Amazing selection of vintage Star Wars toys and figures.
Ed’s House of Gems
Family-run rock shop offering valuable pieces, carvings, polished rocks and fossils, founded by rockhound Edward Panowicz in 1956. They also sell tumblers, supplies, books and maps for hobbyists.
Address: 7712 N.E. Sandy Blvd. Phone: 503-284-8990. Web: www.facebook.com/eds. Don’t miss: Agates, crystals and thunder eggs.
Mom & Pop Wine Shop
Roseway neighbor Telina Rohrer’s warm and inviting wine shop focuses mainly on wines at $20 or less from small producers around the world whose wines are not on the shelves of big retailers.
Address: 6908 N.E. Sandy Blvd. Phone: 503-913-4929. Web: www.momandpopshopwine.com. Don’t miss: Weekly Friday afternoon tasting with four wines and snacks for $5.00. Works of local artists and craftspeople are also on display for sale.
Bradshaw’s Quality Auto Care
Family-owned and operated, full service auto repair shop with 75 years of history in the neighborhood. Quick turnaround times, backed by a two-year 24,000-mile nationwide warranty.
Address: 7305 N.E. Fremont St. Phone: 503-926-6327. Web: www.bradshawsauto.com. Don’t miss: Eco-friendly car repairs, explained in simple terms by a friendly staff.
Shawna Laxson’s neighborhood landmark has been providing old-fashioned milkshakes, coffee, and sodas since 1914, with all the medications and services of a modern pharmacy, but with the friendly and personalized service of an independent business.
Address: 7206 N.E. Sandy Blvd. Phone: 503-284-1159. Web: www.fairleyspharmacy.com. Don’t miss: Can’t go wrong with one of their awesome milkshakes, made fresh with Umpqua ice cream.
Meowhaus Feline Boarding and Day Spa
Anya Stites’ overnight hotel and day spa caters exclusively to cats with 42 luxury suites and two locations – one just down the street in Rose City Park.
Address: 6025 N.E. Sandy Blvd. Phone: 503-281-0222. Web: www.meowhaus.biz. Don’t miss: Each “suite” comes with a private view of an indoor aviary – live Zebra finches – for kitty’s bird-watching pleasure.