The Willamette Light Brigade is a Portland, OR based nonprofit committed to connecting community and enriching the public realm by harnessing the power of artful lighting to transform the cityscape. We light bridges, produce a dynamic winter light festival, and advocate for the importance of night-time identity and place-making.
The Willamette Light Brigade was founded in 1986 with a mission to enhance and beautify the city of Portland by lighting the bridges that span the Willamette River and therefore uniting the East and West sides of the city. Over the last two decades, the Willamette Light Brigade has successfully advocated for and facilitated the lighting of many of Portland’s iconic bridges, and continues to be part of long term planning for the bridges in the city of Portland.
In 2015, The Willamette Light Brigade founded the Portland Winter Light Festival in an effort to propel forward its mission of connecting community and enriching the public realm through artful lighting. The light-based art and technology event began as a coalescence of ideas in 2016, and continues to be a beloved annual winter event that is presented for free to the public each February, and provides significant economic and cultural stimulation to Portland during the darkest time of year.
Are you one of the thousands of locals and visitors who enjoy the LED lights on the piers of the Morrison bridge? Want to put your colors up there? To have your say in lights on the the community’s riverfront? Thanks to the enthusiastic leadership of County Commissioner Deborah Kafoury and her chief of staff Beckie Lee, the Lighting Partner program exists so you can do just that.