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About Portland Pride Pages and about the person behind the pages.

Creating www.PortlandPridePages.com is my way of saying, “Hey, we got this," to the LGBTQ+ community! It’s a virtual hug, a high-five, and a nod to the people moving back, new to the community, natives, and the late bloomers like me who found their voice a little later in the game.

I initially started Pride Pages in Boise and it was such a success, that I wanted to bring it to the rest of the Northwest and create safe spaces everywhere. Having lived in Portland for a few years and having 2 adult children and 2 grandchildren in Portland, I especially wanted to create a safe space for all of us Queer folks!

I grew up in Oregon and in Idaho. I didn’t come out until very late in the game, until I moved away from Idaho and moved back to Oregon in my mid-30's.

I grew up in Salem, Oregon, moved away during high school, and I graduated from Bonners Ferry High School, in Bonners Ferry, Idaho (for those that don't know, it is North Idaho, way up North!). I was very traditional for North Idaho, and was a very conservative Christian as a young adult. Coming out was nowhere on the horizon back then. I got married young, had three children, was very involved in church, raised my kids in the traditional sense, and even worked in the school district alongside my children, all in Sandpoint, Idaho.  When the kids were teenagers, I went through a divorce, and we all moved away to Oregon.

 

When I finally did come out, no one was surprised, including my teenage children, whose biggest response was “It’s about time you figured it out mom!”

As a person with foundations in tradition, I sought out some new traditions and followed the old cliché of the traditional ‘U-Haul lesbian’ move and made my way to Palm Springs for about a 10 year stint.

Fast forward to when I was even older, we won’t mention my age, and I made my way back to Oregon, for a few years through the Covid pandemic to be close to family. For some insane reason, I moved back to Idaho, even though I swore I would never move back. Never say never. It was a bit intimidating and honestly, the only reason I was moving back was Amy, a Boise Native, happened to be a girl that I fell very much in love. I had heard all the political unrest, and uproars about Idaho, I found out that I was losing some of my rights, including equal housing, and you can say it was a little scary moving back here.

After I got to Boise, I was trying to find some resources, and I realized that our LGBTQ+ community, including me, needed more than the occasional annual Pride event.   We needed a steady place to call our own where we could find resources, safe spaces to be, and feel at home. Guess what? I couldn’t find it. I thought I found a website once, that claimed these resources, but it had only 3 businesses listed, and the links were broken, but one link worked, however, that business was no longer in operation! It felt like finding a gay needle in a very straight haystack.

That is when the lightbulb went on, and I took action, and www.BoisePridePages.com came to life! Voila!


I have now started several locations, including Palm Springs, Seattle, and now Portland!

This website isn’t just about places and business listings, it is about creating a safe and welcoming space right here in the heart of Portland. Starting in new places can be scary, moving back, starting a new job, or whatever your reason for being here is. You know what is scarier than that? The idea of not having a community to lean on.

This is a project of passion born out of my own personal journey. Let’s turn www. PortlandPridePages.com into that safe space we were looking for – a place where everyone, no matter where they are on their journey, can feel safe, seen, heard, and valued.

Find your safe spaces and business to support, that support you. Check out a podcast, or read a blog post.

Celebrate Porltand Pride Pages and build a community that is as diverse as it is awesome!


Cheers!

Meda Thompson





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