Kenton Repair Cafe


OK folks, it’s time to grab your broken toaster and get your repair-groove on.

No broken toaster? How about a ripped hem, a non-functioning bike? Maybe a lesson on how to repair a flat tire on your bike, or a diagnosis on your broken speaker?

Yep – you heard that right. Speaker repair. If your speaker doesn’t work, bring it in. One of the volunteers will take it apart, diagnose the problem, tell you what parts to buy and where to buy them. He will show you how to fix it, plus give you his phone number in case of q’s. You just can’t get much cooler than that – oh wait! You can. The cost for this diagnosis? Zero dollars. Sign up here for repairs at the Old Kenton Firehouse on Tuesday, August 27. Or just show up!


The goal is to disrupt that oh-so-annoying purchase, discard, purchase again cycle. To do that, the group would like to make you question the idea of throwing out the broken toaster (the toaster here is a metaphor for broken items – bear with me). Do you really need a new toaster? Not if you can get a (free) repair instead. Not if you can learn how to repair it yourself the next time around. And if we, as a society, start questioning all that goes in the trash, everyone wins. The Repair Café volunteers are contributing to this effort by giving you a very good alternative to the landfill. Get your item repaired or learn how to repair it yourself in a group setting at a really low-key event. The volunteers are nice and mellow, and they don’t scoff at people who don’t know how to fix a toaster.

And if you are so inclined, the group has really cool Ts for sale ($10). I got my junk fixed at – I’ll be wearing mine!

(FYI – future events will possibly include book and toy repair, tool sharpening, and dedicated sewing workshops.)

Portlander Nancy Ranchel is a self-described accountant, design fan, serial re-modeler, compulsive re-user and blog writer.