Connecting people through place and storytelling.

Field Notes: A Stinky Sponge, a Frozen Beaver, and a Camera

Jocelyn Akins knows her audience. “Wanna bust your balls all day in the field with me tomorrow slinging frozen beaver?” This is the text I receive. Entirely out of the blue. Entirely unsurprising, given who it’s coming from. Jocelyn Akins (Dr....

The Sense of Place Lecture will return in Fall 2023.

In the meantime, we are building a new and improved Sense of Place Webpage. Visit us again to see all of the changes.

Don’t forget to join our email list to receive updates about the work our Sense of Place team is doing in the Columbia River Gorge community.

Lecture Archive

To see our past lectures, please visit our Youtube Channel by using the button below.


SOP 13 Sponsor logos

Latest Season

Request for Proposals:

Sense of Place Lecture Series, Season 14 (2023-24)

*If you’re unable to apply online, please reach contact us. 

What we’re looking for:

  • Presenters with expertise on a topic related to the cultural or natural history of the Columbia River Gorge.
  • Individuals who enjoy sharing their knowledge and can present in one of the Sense of Place formats*.
  • Availability to present in Hood River, Oregon. (If pandemic restrictions exist, availability to present via Zoom webinar**.)
  • Lectures happen on the 2nd or 3rd Wednesday of the month, October – April.
  • Speakers are asked to arrive by 6 pm.
  • Lectures begin at 7 pm and run 45mins-1hr, followed by a Q&A session moderated by the host, Sarah Fox.


Sense of Place Format

a) presentation by speaker (can include PowerPoint, props, etc.) [example: Ralph Lampman]
b) conversational format with host Sarah Fox [example: Kat Brigham]


What we offer:

  • Event marketing to 4,000 e-newsletter subscribers and via social media and 7,000+ reached via print media with regional newspapers and partners in Oregon and Washington
  • Book sales facilitated by a local bookshop (optional).
  • A chance to be a part of a popular and meaningful lecture series with a loyal audience.
  • A digital recording of your presentation will be shared/archived online via the Sense of
    Place web page.
  • Lodging for out-of-town presenters.
  • Honorarium.

**Season 14 lectures will be presented live, in person, in Hood River, Oregon. However, if health conditions prohibit this, presentations will be made via Zoom webinar.

Please Provide The Following Information For The Season 14 – Sense of Place RFP:

  1. Name, title/profession (as it relates to presentation topic), email, phone number, mailing address.
  2. Please give us a description of your proposed lecture (lecture topics must relate to the cultural or natural history of the Gorge). EXAMPLE
  3. Please provide a brief bio of yourself and work (this would be included on our website if selected) EXAMPLE
  4. What is your experience with public speaking? If available, please share links or videos of your public speaking experience. If you would prefer the conversation format, will you be able to meet with Sarah before the event to discuss?
  5. What is your connection to this topic, the Gorge and this region, personally or professionally?
  6. How did you learn about Sense of Place? What interests you in being a part of the series?

Quotes from past Sense of Place presenters:

“Thank you all so much! I had a blast. I really appreciate your early outreach to me and support as I get my feet wet in this new role. And thank you for the work you do to offer such an engaging and diverse program series! I”ll be an audience member from now on!” – Season 11 Presenter

“Sense of Place provides a platform to have discussions on complex topics in an accessible format. Our panel discussion on forestry was fun to be a part of and highlighted the nuanced and entangled nature of issues surrounding forestry. We need more dialogue and discourse like this in our society to break down barriers and find common ground to work from.” – Season 12 Presenter

“Sense of Place provides a much-needed space for thoughtful, respectful, civil discourse on issues that matter to Gorge residents and Oregonians more broadly.  Only by talking about challenging issues with our neighbors can we hope to create a more informed and just community.” – Season 12 presenter

“I found working with you on the program very interesting, fun, and great outreach for those who want to learn.” – Season 13 Presenter 

*If you’re unable to apply online, please reach contact us. 

Have Questions?


Contact Sarah Fox, Sense of Place Host & Curator,