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Sneaker Week PDX gives designers the opportunity to showcase their latest work

The annual sneaker exhibition has been going since 2017, and more than 30 designers are participating this year.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Sneaker Week PDX starts Thursday, and this year's event will give more than 30 designers the chance to showcase their latest work. 

"I haven't really landed the role I wanted yet, so moments like this are really special for me," said Michael Nerlino, whose work will be featured in a kick-off event at Jupiter Next on Burnside.

Sneaker Week has been happening in Portland since 2017, and this year there will be events all over the city. Nerlino said he'll be able to mingle and network, which will hopefully lead to bigger opportunities. 

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"Sneaker Week events are some of the most authentically cultural events that we have here in Portland," Nerlino said. "It's a diverse mix of people from all walks of life that truly enjoy sneakers, storytelling and personal expression."

Kayode Balogun, also known as DJ Ambush, works as one of the promotional partners for Sneaker Week.

"We want to make sure that people within different levels of art and different disciplines are represented and have an opportunity to display their art," Balogun said. "Creating sneakers is art."

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Nerlino said the exposure the event provides to creators is crucial for their growth and success.

"The hope is for the exposure to be a stepping stone," Nerlino said. "It's fun to make this stuff. It's very labor intensive and detail oriented and I strive for perfection."

Events with Sneaker Week are free for members. Anyone who wants to attend any of the events can go to the Sneaker Week website. Sneaker Week runs through Aug. 10.

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