Monday, May 31, 2010

Slow Week (at the store at least)

I can't believe it's been a week since our last post! It bums me out because I like to post every few days. But things are slow moving. But on the bright side, the health inspector said we can open before the other side of the building is done. And our OLCC investigator is super awesome. She said to go ahead and get our liability insurance to apply for our sidewalk permit because it can take the City up to 45 days to decide on it. She said while they're deciding she's going to give us a 90-day temporary liquor license - so literally we could open this week and serve beer, no problem. (Except for the fact that we're not ready).

This weekend my college roommates came in to town from the East Coast. They decided about two weeks ago that it'd be fun to have an impromptu reunion. Good thing things have been so slow at the store because the timing couldn't be better! They/we hit up all of the best places; Last Thursday on Alberta, Widmer Brewery, urban hiking around SE, Grandpa's, VooDoo Donut, the Saturday Market, the PSU Farmer's Market, Pine State Biscuits, Powell's, Our Store!, Multnomah Falls, Mt. Hood, Fonda Rosa, a day of winery tours in the Willamette Valley, Jake's Seafood, Deschutes Brewery, The Hotcake House and Forest Park. I should also add that Justin, his mom, Gerry and I all went to the Eagles concert at the Rose Garden on Saturday night and it rocked! Man, did we have a full weekend! But I wouldn't have changed anything for the world.

<3 <3 <3 Them!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Historic Event!

This past Saturday marked a pretty historic event. After being a staple on Belmont for many years, the It's a Beautiful Pizza sign has been put to rest. Our neighbor at the Blue Monk even came out to take pictures of it. We have a bond to him in that we both have taken over places that were once Beautiful Pizzas. It was scary at times, but in the end, it came down gracefully.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Spinning our wheels

We really don't have much left to do in the space. We're waiting on some plumbing and electrical and then we can get everything inspected. Everything seems to have gone through with the City, after three months of back and forth. I have a bunch of our bar and kitchen equipment on hold at their respective restaurant supply stores. After inspection, we just have to close up the kitchen wall, bring in all the equipment, get approval from the health department and we're ready to go!

We've been helping out with a lot of the shared space. Yesterday, I cleaned out the walk-in refrigerator and today I worked on the patio area. We had to take down a water line and tear out a part of the covered patio Carl just put in a few months ago. The guys next door are going to use the alleyway as an entrance at times, which is going to be sweet!

It's been tough because we just want to get open already!! But we have to keep reminding ourselves, all in due time. And when I put it in perspective, we've been waiting for 2.5 years for this to happen, so what's a few more weeks?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Free Diving Lessons - This Sunday!!

I don't usually like to use the Hall of Records platform to promote other things we are doing but we need some students!! As I have mentioned before, I have been hired by Portland Parks and Rec to revive the springboard diving program here in Portland. Official classes don't start until the end of June but we're offering free classes on Sundays to help us get back into the swing of things.

FREE DIVING CLASS! (IT'S FUN!!) This Sunday, May 23rd from 4:00 - 4:45PM at the Matt Dishman Pool.

It's for kids or adults! And you don't need to know how to do anything beforehand. It's Diving Level 1, so it's just a lot of jumping in and out!

Email me at if you are interested and I'll put you on the list so you can get in for free - whether I know you or not! Thanks!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Our first press piece!

Jenny Tatone of the Willamette Week came by last week to ask us some questions about the future of record stores. We ended up having an hour and a half long conversation because, well, we have a lot to say about the subject!!

The article came out today and it's fantastic! She did a great job writing and portrayed us very well. She got how passionate we are about our business and I love that she started off the article with how we asked ourselves the question, what do we really want to do with our lives? Because that's how this whole thing got started a long, long time ago!

Here's the article:

The Pendulum Swings, Willamette Week, May 19th, 2010

We owe Jenny lots of beers when we open!!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The "Gerry"

We are so lucky to get to bring back a Portland classic! Our friend Gerry ran a food cart for many, many years back in the day in Montgomery Park, Portland's NW Industrial District. The cart was called Gerry's and his special was the Polish on Rye. After a while, everyone started to call it the Gerry. Polish Sausage, Rye bread, mustard and a dill pickle. He put his kids through college selling those sandwiches!

Now, Gerry is a good friend and he has graciously given us the recipe and his good blessings to serve the sandwich in the Hall of Records. We are super stoked and can't wait to eat!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Starting to feel like a Real Record Store!

One of my favorite things to do as soon as we finish a project is decorate and arrange everything as if we were ready to open. This week we finished the vinyl display shelves above the vinyl bins and behind the bar. So naturally, I wanted to see what they look like with records on them!

It's still incredibly dusty in the space, so we didn't want to bring out all the good records. But Justin gave me some from the dollar bin to use and take pictures.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Action Shots

Dameian working on the covers to the vinyl bins, standing in front of the newly built vinyl shelves!

Alli's first experience with power tools!

First meal at our newly built tables!

And the arrival of our barstools!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Bench

Today is a gorgeous Saturday! We took a much needed half day at the store and went for a hike around Mt. Tabor. Man, do Portlanders come out of the woodwork when it's nice out!! Mt. Tabor Park was packed!

Last night we finished working on the bench for the front window. It turned out beautifully as well! But holy moly, was it a mind bender to try to figure out. We have learned that biscuiting makes wood settle in all types of weird ways - basically not at all flat. So the bench ended up being slightly less than level, which was a challenge to try to then make level. But we did it!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

So In Love

I am so in love with our store!! I can't even begin to explain the amazing feeling of having something you've dreamed about for years physically manifest itself. It's exactly how I've been drawing it for the past 2.5 years.

Justin and I finished the floors this week. Our friend John had been doing it (and amazingly wanted to continue doing it all by himself) but his knee swelled up and he couldn't finish it before we needed it done. As soon as the floors were done and covered, I started putting the table tops we made on to the stands from Carl's old tables and arranging the tables and chairs. :)

We got a couch and a great mirror for the back bar from City Liquidators. We ended up not getting the gorgeous couch I picked out from EuroClassic Furniture. We figured we want people to feel comfortable eating and drinking on it and that it may have been too fancy.

Our friend Ian lent us a keg cooler he had sitting in his garage. We are incredibly lucky to get to use it!! I also got a sweet deal on an iced tea maker from a lady that closed a cafe in Beaverton. She suggested serving flavored iced teas like pomegranate, raspberry and peach. She said people go crazy for the pomegranate and I think we just might take her up on that suggestion!

So every day we're adding more and more things to the store and it's coming along beautifully!!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Bar

So, it's not completely bolted together yet, but here it is!! We made it ourselves out of recycled wood and 2 X 4's (with the help of some wood stain and polyurethane). I will say, I'm pretty proud of our handy work!

Update on the pre-opening party

After much discussion, Justin and I have decided not to have the pre-opening party on his birthday, May 15th. There are many reasons for this, one being that we're just not going to be ready by then. We want everyone to be really 'Wowed' and we don't think you will be if it's only partly done. We also think it might take something away from our actual Grand Opening if all our friends, readers and fans have already seen it. Therefore, we're going to wait until our Grand Opening to unveil everything (date still TBD - but hopefully SOON!). I think I need to take Justin away from the store for his birthday. It has consumed us for the past three months (actually 2.5 years, but whose counting). He deserves to do something special. :)