As the longest government shutdown in U.S. history stretches toward its fourth week, a local business is trying to ease the sting of no paycheck for furloughed federal employees—and provide a bit of entertainment for those who've suddenly found themselves with more time on their hands.
Movie Madness is offering free video rentals to government workers affected by the funding impasse that's led to an estimated 800,000 people missing their first scheduled pay date Jan. 11. All you have to do is show proof of federal employment at checkout.
That deal is good for the duration of the shutdown. And if it lasts for as long as Trump has threatened—months, perhaps even a year—at least you can find some solace in the fact that Movie Madness isn't any corner-store Redbox. There are more than 80,000 titles there to help tide you over if the shutdown presses on.
That's not the only shutdown special federal workers have available in Portland.
As previously reported, the Oregon Zoo is also offering free admission to affected families. The Portland Japanese Garden has joined its Washington Park partner and is also allowing federal employees and their families in at no charge. And as a small show of support, downtown event center Punch Bowl Social is slashing the bill on all food and games by 25 percent for individuals who present their ID card to servers before ordering, and that includes happy hour pricing. While it doesn't cover drinks, cans of PBR and Olympia are already $3 apiece. And while that won't fix the furlough, it may make the process a little easier a few bucks at a time.