LitHop: a Literary Pub Crawl

This evening, beginning at 7, a mass of literary talent descends upon NE Alberta Street like a swam of fully mature locusts. Authors, poets, and spoken word artists will read their work simultaneously, creating a buzz at six different locations up and down the street. Portland’s second annual LitHop will see Hawthorne Books, the IPRC, alice blue, Eraserhead Press, Unchaste Readers, and Publication Studio each host a series in which readers will perform for 15 minutes, in quick succession.

The idea is to create something of a literary pub crawl. During the event, listeners can pop up and down the street to hear several, very different performances. Three readers will perform for 15 minutes each at the top of the hour, leaving the remaining quarter-hour to talk, drink, or move on to the next place.

“The 15-minute time slot gives readers more of a spotlight,” says Kevin Sampsell, who produces the event with Jeff Alessandrelli and Bryan Coffelt.

“And they’re great writers so they deserve that time,” adds Sampsell. And he notes that the 15 minutes gives listeners “quality time to get into the voice and style of each writer.”

One of those writers is Mykle Hansen.

“Whenever we bring our best work and our best voice to these events, we’re reminding the world that real human people still exist, offline, off the page,” says Hansen, a frequent PDX Magazine contributor, who was invited by Eraserhead Press to perform at LitHop. Hansen is most likely reading from his most recent novel I, Slutbot, which PDX Magazine has an exclusive preview of here. The book’s robot-themed release party is this weekend at galleryHOMELAND.

For Hansen, the experience isn’t just rewarding as performer, but also as a listener.

Portrait of Kevin Sampsell, by Mykle Hansen

Portrait of Kevin Sampsell, by Mykle Hansen

“I really enjoyed sketching the readers that I saw at last year’s LitHop, so I’m definitely looking forward to doing more of that,” says Hansen, who performs this year at 7 p.m. on the patio behind Bunk Bar and Via Chicago. “Drawing pictures of people while they read helps me to listen more closely.”

In addition to the back patio of Bunk Bar and Via Chicago, readers and speakers will appear at Anna Banana’s, a coffee shop, Bella Faccia, a pizzeria, and Cruzroom, a bar, among others.

“It’s a thrill to take a bar or space that usually doesn’t host readings and see it become this room full of attentive people transfixed by the art of the written word,” notes Sampsell.

Sampsell, who also runs Future Tense Publishing, sees the event as a chance to enjoy his friends and discover new voices. “I like seeing friends of mine read, like Monica Drake, Jay Ponteri, and Michael Heald, but I always like to see people I haven’t seen or read yet,” says Sampsell. “The big thrill of discovery.”

What does author Mykle Hansen think other listeners will take away from the experience? “Hangovers, for some!” suggests the writer. “But for the rest, I hope LitHop stokes a craving for more live language and spoken stories.”

LitHop runs from 7 to 9:45 p.m. at six different locations on Alberta Street. The night concludes with an after party at Radio Room at 10 p.m.


Schedule of Events:

Hawthorne Books @ Cruzroom

2338 NE Alberta

7:00 Tom Spanbauer
7:15 Michael Sage Ricci
7:30 Kerry Cohen­
8:00 James Bernard Frost
8:15 Monica Drake
8:30 Kassten Alonso
9:00 Loretta Stinson
9:15 Scott Nadelson
9:30 Jay Ponteri


Eraserhead Press @ Bunk Bar & Via Chicago Back Patio (all ages)

2017 NE Alberta

7:00   Mykle Hansen
7:15   Tiffany Scandal
7:30   J. David Osborne
8:00   Cameron Pierce
8:15   Karl Fischer
8:30   Carlton Mellick III
9:00   Kirsten Alene
9:15   Vince Kramer
9:30   Jeff Burk


The IPRC @ Ampersand Gallery & Fine Books (all ages)

2916 NE Alberta

7:00  Zach Auburn
7:15  Joshua James Amberson
7:30  Moe Bowstern
8:00  Justin Hocking
8:15  Martha Grover
8:30  Michael Heald
9:00  Natalie Briggs
9:15  Noland Bo Chaliha
9:30  Emily Kendal Frey


Publication Studio @ Anna Bannana’s (all ages)

2403 NE Alberta

7:00  Zosia Wiatr
7:15  Michael Harper
7:30  Timmy Straw
8:00  Dan Gilsdorf
8:15  Rob Schlegel
8:30  Elizabeth Bidart
9:00  Mackenzie Courtney
9:15  Ryann Bosetti
9:30  Ashby Collinson


Unchaste Readers @ The Knock Back Bar

2315 NE Alberta

7:00  Becca Yenser
7:15  Judy Ossello
7:30  Wendy Chin-Tanner
8:00  Cari Luna
8:15  Flavia Rocha
8:30  Sidony O’neal
9:00  Robyn Bateman
9:15  Johanna Stein
9:30  Paula Bomer


alice blue @ Branch Whiskey & Bella Faccia Back Patio

2934 NE Alberta

7:00  Dennis Sweeney
7:15  Robert P Kaye
7:30  Sarah Bartlett
8:00  Tara Atkinson
8:15  Michael Rerick
8:30  Stacey Levine
9:00  Tyler Brewington
9:15  JR Walsh
9:30  Zhang Er


After party @ Radio Room

1101 NE Alberta

10 PM!





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