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Bastille Day - This Saturday @ Director Park 

This coming Saturday, July 13, Portland will host the largest Bastille Festival on the West New BD 2013 Coast, drawing visitors from the region, from neighboring states and from as far away as New York. The 11th annual event, to be held in Director Park from noon to 6 p.m., features even more bands (9 groups), vendors (28) and children's activities than last year. A highlight will be the 9th Annual Portland Waiter's Race. A web-resolution version of the event brochure (1MB) is available by clicking here. Also, scroll through the articles below for direct access to specific listings (menus, exhibitor lists, etc.). Printed programs will also be available at Director Park on Saturday.

Art Exhibit, Guillotine Photos & More  

New this year: a joint exhibit of art work from all of Portland's French immersion schools. One of the 30 works Etoile Artto be exhibited is this piece by a 7 year-old who attends L'Etoile French Immersion; the work is in gouache, using mosaics. The shoGuillotinew will also include award-winning photos from the international Plante Femmes exhibit. Also new this year: festival-goers will have the chance to take souvenir photos at a Guillotine station! The victim gets to pop their head into the guillotine while their executioner poses. The photo-op is provided by WillaKenzie Estate Winery (www.willakenzie.com); look for the guillotine at the tents operated by State Farm at the festival.

Cognac Cocktails, Cider and French Cuisine 

National and regional representatives of A. Hardy USA Ltd. will be featuring innovative cocktails with Hardy Cognac, Joseph Cartron Framboise and Thatcher's Elderflower Organic Liqueur. Cocktails Also available in the wine garden will be French wine, Oregon beer (BridgePort Brewing), Lillet (red, white and ros), and, for the first time, European-style craft cider, Virtue Cider. Click here for the wine, beer and cider choices, and here for the cocktails. To complement the excellent offerings in the wine garden, visitors will enjoy French-themed offerings from booths representing a number of Portland's top restaurants, including the Heathman Restaurant, C'est Si Bon, St Honor Boulangerie and Brasserie Montmartre, as well as ice cream (Ben & Jerry's). Click here for the food booths' menus.

French Imports, Paris Trip and Class Raffles  

Bastille Day will host close to 30 vendors and exhibitors; click here for the complEiffelete list. Visit the Alliance booth for Bastille souvenir T-shirts, French gift cards (somewhat scandalous; visit the booth to see why!), French flags, the new Vintage France CD release of Putumayo and more. Also visitors can buy tickets for the raffle of $2400 in prizes donated by Avanti Destinations and the Heathman Hotel. For raffle details, click here. The winners' names will be drawn at the close of the festival on July 13; winners need not be present to win. Tickets can also be purchased online, prior to July 12. The Alliance booth will also have a free raffle for 10-week class (value $285) and other prizes.

Children's Activities, Music and Waiters Race  

Several exhibitors will offer activities for children throughout the park. Click here for the list of options and WaitersRace visit the FAIS sponsor tent for professional airbrush face-painting. On the entertainment side of things, 9 groups will be performing throughout the day on the main stage, representing genres from opera to Cajun-country-folk to West African Jazz Fusion. Click here for the entertainment schedule. Note that the singing of the Marseillaise 2cv by Whitney Martin precedes the Portland Waiters Race, and that the women's cycling club, Sorella Forte, will also be in the activities line-up! Also look for a 2CV exhibit by John Blackwell; click here for the program extract on that iconic French automobile.


Dates to Remember
July 13: Bastille Day in Director Park
July 19: French Public Speaking Organizational Meeting
August 8: Concours de Tartes aux Fruits at Multnomah Athletic Club
Quick Web Links

 Summer Term in progress - some late enrollments possible.

 Visit www.afportland.org 

or call 503.223.8388. 


Conversation Groups

Hosted by Alliance staff or board members. Drop-ins welcome; membership is encouraged but not required.

 NW Portland

St Honor on NW Thurman on Wed., July 17 at 6:00 p.m.

SE Portland

At Chez Machin, Mon., Aug. 12 at 7:00 p.m. & at Vie de Bohme weekly on Sundays, 4-5:30 p.m.

SW Portland / Vancouver

The Lake Oswego & Lapellah/Vancouver groups are breaking for the summer



Bastille Premium Sponsors








 Annual In-Kind Sponsors




Portland's Bastille Day Festival - Why It's Unique 

Bastille Day in Director Park is the only such large-scale festival being organized by a nonprofit organization, with the support of nearly 20 business and in-kind sponsors as listed below, in addition to cash donations from individuals. The Alliance does not receive government support and the event is entirely self-financed through private donations, corporate support and sales on the day of the event.


Explains director Linda Witt, "Most major cities have given up on organizing public Bastille festivals because they are expensive undertakings, not to mention the time that is needed to coordinate them. Fortunately in Portland we have a good spirit of partnership in the French-American community as well as private and corporate support."


So come on down to Director Park on Saturday, enjoy the festival, and help make sure the tradition continues! Vive la fte!


Parking tips: Director Park, a block from Nordstrom's, is between SW Taylor and SW Yamhill, and SW Park and SW 9th. The MAX goes right by the park, and the streetcar is just a block away on SW 10th & 11th. There is parking underneath the park (the garage entrance is on SW Taylor just west of Broadway) and there are many other garages in the downtown area.


Sponsors 2013


Other FETES Around Town: 

Bastille Day will also be celebrated at several events in SW, SE and NE Portland throughout the weekend, when several French-connected bakeries and restaurants will have special menus and events, including Vie de Bohme's Bal des Pompiers with Eric John Kaiser, Pix Ptisserie's Bastille Bash, Le Bouchon's 15th Anniversary Bastille Day Dinner (as mentioned in the last newsletter), and St Honor Bakery's celebrations at the NW Thurman and Lake Oswego locations. (St Honor is also a sponsor of the festival in Director Park.)




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