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KERN PARK FLOWER SHOPPE, 6713 SE Holgate Blvd, celebrate their centennial anniversary Dec 5, 2 – 5 pm. Members of the community are invited to join the celebration, which features light appetizers and refreshments as well as a preview of upcoming holiday arrangements. Kern Park Flower Shoppe is owned and operated by Holly Itami Springfels, whose great-grandfather opened the shop in 1915. For info call 503.771.9000, or email







BEANSTALK consignment store, located in the NE Fremont and SE Montavilla neighborhoods, specializes in modern and hip children’s resale clothing, shoes, toys and gear. With an emphasis on safety, the staff hand-selects each item from a community of consignors for babies and kids size preemie to youth 14. Designed with the consignor and customer in mind, Beanstalk wants you to enjoy a friendly, courteous shopping experience. Pictured are the locally-made Lofty Poppy hats, $22.95. a-hatsOne of the  great gift ideas available at Beanstalk. Visit, 8021 SE Stark St. and 3527 NE 15th Ave.




Coffeehouse Art in SE

By Midge Pierce

As concern mounts over Portland’s creative class being pushed out of town by exorbitant housing costs, a time-honored tradition remains alive and well – coffeehouse art displays.

At Montavilla’s Hungry Heart cafe, the criteria for selection is art that’s affordable, accessible and beautiful. “We showcase local artists whose work we love,” says manager Carolyn Linn pointing to a grouping of exotic bird prints with prices ranging from $45 – $200. The bakery carries a display case of jewelry.

At Sound Grounds on Belmont St., colorful paintings rule. Owner Liz Kuchel has lost track of how many artists have been showcased over the last ten years. She says coffeehouses are a way to keep urban art viable. Music, poetry readings and other forms of performance art are also part of Common Grounds.

Artists requesting wall space have even included the local mailman according to Michael Waterman who curates Sound Grounds’ exhibits. “Our displays are random and diversified, he says, adding that up to five artists can be showcased at a time. Exhibits have included the spiritual representations of neighbor Raven Isabella Greywolf. Other exhibits range from terrariums to photography and three dimensional displays that showcase nature and texture.

At Hawthorne’s Common Grounds cafe, owner Gus Smith says he gets more requests than he can handle so he looks for serious work that shows real effort and dedication. “Being an artist myself, I can relate to those folks who have something to share and just need a venue to do it.”

Exhibitor Cecile Pitts specializes in wood and fabric which she strips, skeins and knits recycled materials onto asymmetrical branches that often take distinctly female forms. A retired math teacher, she found that passion and persistence matter. She sold seven pieces on her first day exhibiting. All proceeds, she says, will go to her favorite nonprofit, TaborSpace.

The Bell Tower, TaborSpace’s own recently renamed coffeehouse, features the work of elementary students to retirees. Artist-architect Jim Longstreet has had three exhibits including the fanciful figures and scenes he drew for a storybook world he created for his granddaughter. He has a popular model airplane on permanent display.

Coffeehouse art is more than just a showcase of SE talent. If is a hopeful sign that not all of Portland’s creative class has fled to the suburbs.


Meals on Wheels Seeks Volunteers


Meals on Wheels Belmont Center, 4610 SE Belmont St., seeks volunteers to assist with delivering meals to homebound elderly.

“These volunteers are invaluable because they not only help us feed our elderly, but they make sure these seniors see a friendly face at least once a week. Sometimes the Meals on Wheels driver is the only person these homebound seniors see all day,” said Robin Gao, Belmont Center manager.

Meals are delivered Monday – Friday between 10:30 am and 12 pm. Drivers must be at least 18 years old and have a valid driver’s license.

The Center is looking for people who are interested in helping to pack Meals, event and fundraising, kitchen help and holiday event planning.

For more info, call Robin at 503.953.8202 or visit

Since 1970 Meals on Wheels People have provided a nutritional and social lifeline for seniors through 30 meal sites in Multnomah, Washington and Clark counties and delivery to homebound seniors.

With the help of 8,000 volunteers, the nonprofit organization serves 5,000 meals daily and 1.3 million meals each year.


Service of Grief and Loss

Monday, December 21 • 7 pm

1312 SE 35th Ave.

Portland Mennonite Church


The longest night of the year comes right on the cusp of Christmas.

Amidst all of the “comfort and joy” of the season, some of us are carrying grief, enduring loss, and struggling with depression.

On December 21 is a gathering for a service of readings, contemplative music, silence and prayers.

The hour-long service begins at 7 pm in the Sanctuary and everyone is welcome.

Come seek comfort and light for your soul on the shortest day and longest night of the year.

See for more.




Hawthorne Boulevard will be lit up with festive snowflake decorations and strolling carolers during the annual Hawthorne Holiday Stroll on Saturday, December 5.

Beginning at noon, music will brighten the street and this year’s Holiday Stroll will include:

  • Special offers from merchants
  • Carolers and acappellasinging groups
  • Santa Claus at Fred Meyer from noon to 4 pm
  • Tree Lighting Ceremony at 5 pm at The FernieBrae on 41st & Hawthorne

“We just opened our shop in January of this year” said Gregg Harris, owner of Roosevelt’s Terrariums, 44th & SE Hawthorne Blvd., “and the community has received us with open arms.”


Drumming classes in southeast


Portland Taiko, the Asian American drumming ensemble founded in 1994, will move to the Oregon Buddhist Temple at 3720 SE 34th St. The performing arts organization produces annual concerts, performs at local events, and offers classes and workshops.

a-taikoPortland Taiko is available for school assembly programs that affirm its mission to inspire audiences, build community, and educate about Asian heritage and culture.

The group will offer its Taiko 101 Workshops and 8-week Beginning and Intermediate classes at the temple.

More information about Portland Taiko’s classes and events can be found at, emailing They are available by phone at 503.288.2456.


State of parking


The last time Portland significantly overhauled the parking policy was in 1996. The City has grown since then and by 2035, it’s expected the city will have 122,000 more households, 135,000 more jobs and 1.2 million more daily trips.

Key policy changes will be:

  • changethe zoning code to allow and encourage shared use of existing and new off-street parking
  • redefiningthe purpose and value of the curbside street space used for parking, loading or other uses
  • developinga new Residential Parking Permit Program
  • simplifyingparking regulations in the
    Central city allowing for shared parking and more flexibility in parking regulations.

Since 1996 the Central City has increased parking spaces by 24,000. Fourteen percent  of new buildings are without off-street parking, eighty-six percent with off-street parking.

In neighborhood centers 33% of new mixed-use buildings were built without parking but more than 75% of single family homes include new off-street parking

The Mixed-Use centers and Corridors Livability and parking Analysis Report found that:

  • 87% own at least one car
  • 57% drive alone to work
  • 0.54 occupied spacers per residential unit during the peak hour
  • 51% have paid parking in the building at an average of $108.75 per month
  • 57% park on-streetat no charge
  • 33% live in buildings without off street parking

To find out more, see or email

In the 1960s and 70s Portland suffered frequent violations of federal air quality standards, including carbon monoxide violations as frequently as once every three days. Due to stricter regulations and improved transit, the City has not had an air quality violation since 1987.


Upcycled Holiday Ideas

By Bonita Davis, Master Recycler and Sunnyside resident

This holiday season you may find SE Portland boutiques, gift shops, galleries and pop-ups featuring upcycled art by local artists.

Not sure if you’ve seen upcycled art? The popularity of upcycling is creating a surge of interest in this one-of-a-kind artwork.

An entire gallery of upcycled art is featured at the current Cracked Pots Off the Wall show at the ReClaimIt Store and Gallery located at 1 N. Killingsworth St. The show continues through December 20.

Area artists, many from SE, use upcycling techniques to work brilliant stained glass into salvaged bike gears that transform light, and wood and metal assemblages that evoke conversation and the impulse to touch the objects.

Idaho’s Famous Potatoes proudly stands out on a license plate has been skillfully remade into a dustpan with a tool handle.  On another wall is a series of delicately-painted and evocative landscapes on repurposed wood panels and ceramic tiles.

Flirty, dishy dolls gaze up under glass while being served up on a plate, while vivid, graphic collage work covering a large expanse of wall space invites us to think through their themes.

You may have to remind yourself that these art pieces are made from salvaged materials discarded and then reclaimed.

Cracked Pot artists “promote art made from materials that otherwise would have gone to the landfill or recycling processor”.

We all know that what we throw away never really goes away – there is no “away.”  Finding ways to reduce the amount of waste through creative reuse is key.

Upcycling is different from recycling.  Recycled materials go through reprocessing to change material from one product into another.  This requires energy and sometimes unwanted byproducts.

Learn more by visiting the Off The Wall Holiday Gift Show at ReClaim It.

The Gallery and store are part of the vision of Cracked Pots, a non-profit organization that has “reuse at the heart” of what they do.

Take a moment to look around to see what Portland throws away, and what has been thoughtfully and carefully reclaimed, celebrating sustainablility and creativity.

Learn more about ReClaimIt at about the Cracked Pots, at  

Store hours are Friday to Sunday, 11 am to 6 pm.


Co-op membership drive

Local volunteers have launched a campaign to reach Montavilla Food Co-op’s (MFC) next membership goal: the MFC 500. They are reaching out to residents, visitors and supporters of the neighborhood to recruit 60 more members, for a total of 500 members by December 31. If the Co-op reaches its goal, one lucky member will receive a wellness package worth over $100 from local businesses.

Prospective members can sign up online at: The public is invited to promote this campaign on social media by liking and sharing posts from the Co-op’s Facebook page.

MFC has engaged a consultant from Cooperative Development Services, a non-profit organization that helps establish food co-ops across the United States. Their model includes three stages of development with member thresholds. MFC reached its first member threshold earlier this year, when it achieved 400 members.

Montavilla Food Co-op seeks to establish a cooperative grocery store in the Montavilla neighborhood of East Portland. It is governed by an all-volunteer board of directors and board meetings are open to the public. Volunteers have recruited 437 members as of November 14.

The Co-op is based on seven cooperative principles:

  • Voluntary and open membership
  • Democratic member control
  • Members’ economic participation
  • Autonomy and independence
  • Education, training and information
  • Cooperation among cooperatives
  • Concern for community


ANNUAL ADVENT CRAFT FESTIVAL – Tabor Heights Methodist Church at SE 61st and Stark, Sunday, December 6. A light lunch will be served after the service, and then the group will go downstairs to make holiday crafts. No experience necessary. Teachers will be onboard. Begins about 12:45 pm  to 3 All are welcome to this community event and it is free. Questions? See


HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIR AT PEOPLE’S, 3029 SE 21st. Wednesday Dec. 9 from 2 – 7 pm in the community room for the Annual Holiday Craft Fair. This holiday bazaar features local artisans and handmade arts, crafts and foodstuffs. It’s a great time to get to know local artists in the community. Speak with a crafter, enjoy a refreshment and share a conversation with other Member-Owners. This event is free and open to all. Happy holidays!


BOY SCOUTS TREE SALE – At the SW corner of St. Ignatius’ parking lot at 3400 SE 43rd Ave. This will be Troop 351’s, 35th year selling Christmas trees and wreaths. The non-profit sale funds the Boy Scouts and Venture Crew’s summer camps and activities for the entire year. Open every day through December 23,  weekdays from 5 to 9 pm and weekends, 9 am to 9 pm. For information, call the Tree Lot Trailer at 503.775.2848. Visa and Mastercard welcome for you convenience.


WEATHERIZATION WORKSHOP – Free workshop where participants learn how to stop drafts in their home, especially around doors and windows to save energy and increase comfort. Great for renters too. Qualified participants receive a free weatherization supply kit. Offered on multiple days. Tues, Dec 1, 6 – 7:30 pm – Arleta SUN School, 5109 SE 66th Ave.; Mon, Dec 14, 6 – 8 pm – Community Energy Project,  2900 SE Stark St, Suite A and Wed, Dec 16, 6 – 8 pm – Community Energy Project,  2900 SE Stark St, Suite A.


NEIGHBORHOOD CHRISTMAS CAROL SING –  Friday, Dec 11, 7 pm Tenth Church of Christ Scientist, 5736 SE 17th Ave. Come together with friends and neighbors to sing your favorite Christmas Carols, listen to the Christmas story, and get into the Christmas spirit!


FREE MEALS are served in the St. Francis Dining Hall, in the lower level inside the St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, 330 SE 11th Ave. Hot meals are served daily, Mon – Fri 5 pm; Sundays 3:30 pm. Roughly 150-300 “home cooked” meals are served daily to those in need in dignity and peace.


COLONEL SUMMERS PARK PAVILION IMPROVEMENT – Wednesday, December 2, 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm at Hinson Baptist Church, Room 102,1137 SE 20th Ave, entrance on Salmon St. Refreshments provided. For more info: Elizabeth Kennedy-Wong at 503-823-5113, or For project information visit

Clinton Greenway diverters installation

As a part of the Clinton Neighborhood Greenway Enhancement Project, the Portland Bureau of Transportation has scheduled the installation of two traffic diverters on SE Clinton Street at SE 17th and 32nd Avenues. Weather permitting, the diverters will be installed during the first week of January 2016.

Beginning in early December, PBOT will conduct an education and awareness campaign to alert people who use SE Clinton to the street’s status as a neighborhood greenway.

The campaign is a direct response to the feedback PBOT received during the public involvement process which included two open houses with approximately 300 total participants. Over 700 comments were submitted to the bureau either at the open houses or online.

The Enhancement Project focuses on reducing auto traffic volumes and speeds to comply with the performance guidelines recently established for neighborhood greenways in the Neighborhood Greenway Assessment Report.

This report was unanimously accepted by City Council this past summer. Using newly-adopted guidelines, the report evaluates Portland’s existing Greenway network.

This evaluation determined that neighborhood greenways are a very popular element of Portland’s bicycle system and some of the older routes are no longer providing conditions that allow for safe and comfortable bicycle use.

This is the case on SE Clinton. Between SE 12th Ave. and SE Cesar E. Chavez Blvd, traffic volumes currently exceed the upper acceptable limit of 2,000 cars/day by 200 to 1,000 cars.

Much of this traffic is believed to be non-local cut-through traffic that should be using either SE Division St. or SE Powell Blvd.

Public comment leading up to the adoption of the assessment report strongly supported SE Clinton as a candidate for improvement to address the speed and volume issues.

Diverters will be installed as part of a six month trial period to assess their effect on improving conditions for people who walk and bike on SE Clinton and decreasing the traffic on the street.

PBOT engineers have recommended against introducing too many diverters, into the neighborhood in phase one of the trial period.

In addition to diverters, PBOT will be changing 34th Ave. to a one-way northbound street, with a contraflow southbound bike lane.

If traffic volumes can be reduced below 2,000 cars per day, the street section will also be signed for 20 mph. Construction of the changes to 34th Ave. will begin as soon as weather permits striping work.

Neighbors living on Woodward are concerned that it could become a cut-through route.

Commissioner Novick said PBOT is committed to safety on Woodward and neighbors concerns. PBOT has committed to closely monitoring the situation and introducing traffic calming elements.

East of SE Cesar E. Chavez Blvd, PBOT will install speed bumps beginning next spring when weather conditions allow.

A citizen’s advisory committee will assist in the evaluation of the trial period and recommend if modifications are needed for the project’s second phase.


Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the City’s transportation system, and a community partner in shaping a livable city.         

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