How Portland peninsula’s renters saved their park

The cover story of the first print issue of The Bollard, published in the summer of 2007, envisioned a day when residents of the Portland peninsula would throw off the yokes of their masters in the Deering neighborhoods and establish an independent city called Portinsula. Written in the wake of highly contentious efforts by Peaks […]

Timber: Portland’s natural resource (food) keeps growing

If Portland’s economy is still depressed by the Great Recession, you couldn’t tell by its restaurant scene. Local food sites like Portland Food Map report new places opening seemingly every week. With nearly every available commercial space suitable for restaurant use filled, gastro-entrepreneurs have gone mobile, trolling in their food trucks for vacant lots and […]

Forward Portland’s backward facts

Forward Portland, the political action committee formed to oppose the citizen-initiated effort to save and improve Congress Square Park, is revving up its propaganda machine ahead of the June 10 vote. On its website,, the PAC has a section titled “The Facts” that’s worth exploring and debunking. First off, the PAC claims that if […]

The real gangs of Portland, Maine

Contrary to some wildly erroneous and irresponsible reports in the press recently, Portland has a serious and growing gang problem. The Crips and Bloods are harmless compared with the menacing groups roaming the streets of Maine’s largest metropolis, perpetrating crimes in broad daylight with no respect for the law or common decency. Here’s a rundown of […]

Continually surprised by Hannaford

Apparently Hannaford’s old ad slogan is true: They never stop surprising you. My surprising story began last fall. For the past five years, the free monthly magazine I publish, The Bollard, had been available at Hannaford supermarkets in southern Maine, in racks by the doors among numerous other free monthly and weekly papers. Supermarkets are […]

The year the music died

Two thousand fourteen is turning into a brutal year for Portland’s dining, arts and nightlife scenes. Several of the city’s most creative and beloved establishments have closed or are preparing to shut down or move away, while others have cut back on live entertainment or consolidated, ceding control to a monopolistic corporation based out of […]