Here’s the deal with the tree guy arrested in downtown Portland

The Portland man arrested while dressed as a tree in the middle of a downtown street said he wanted to “‘impact people’s natural choreography,’” according to police.

Asher Woodworth, 30, gave his reasoning to authorities at Cumberland County Jail, according to Portland police Lt. Kevin Cashman.

Dressed in evergreen boughs, Woodworth blocked traffic at the corner of High and Congress streets Monday before being taken into custody by two Portland police officers, as captured on camera by local station WCSH-TV.


Woodworth was arrested for refusing to leave the road and charged with the misdemeanor of obstructing a public way, Cashman said.

The “performance,” as Cashman said Woodworth later called it, may have been planned for some time. A September post on a Tumblr blog linked to Woodworth’s personal website shows a person dressed in tree branches similar to what Woodworth wore Monday.

On his website, Woodworth expresses interest “in facilitating diverse experiences of being-in-the-world.” “He is impulsive” and studied philosophy and dance at Bennington College, the site states.

Woodworth did not immediately respond to a request for comment.