Community Features

The "Events and Activities" for the month are below these featured stories!

Westmoreland, Portland, history
This 1937 Westmoreland photograph was taken near the intersection of S.E. Bybee Boulevard at Milwaukie Avenue, looking north. The Monarch Pharmacy and soda fountain graced the sweeping northeast corner at this intersection, where the Eastside Railway Streetcar either traveled north to the Brooklyn neighborhood, or swung east over the Bybee Bridge to Eastmoreland. A Shell Station provided gas, oil and a lube job if you owned an automobile. (Courtesy of City of Portland archives)

Westmoreland, and the beginnings of a new community

Special to THE BEE

Everyone loves to celebrate an event, an anniversary, or a special occasion.

Recently Cleveland and Benson High School capped 2016 by celebrating notable anniversaries of their beginning. Reed College and what is today Sellwood Middle School just completed their 100th and 140th anniverseries.

But what about the folks who live in the Westmoreland neighborhood? When does their anniversary arrive?

That’s a good question, but a hard one to answer, because there isn’t an exact date that Westmorelanders can rally around.

The non-native settlers, who built homes near “Milwaukie Road” during the early years, didn’t exactly defeat the British or fend off Russian traders to proclaim their freedom from the tyranny of foreign rule.

We can point to when Sellwood was annexed into the city of Portland, in 1893, as that community’s official date. Even though the boundaries of Westmoreland were considered part of Sellwood back then – and some people seem to think they still are! – at that time, there really wasn’t yet a community established as Westmoreland.

In The Oregonian back in 1894, twelve years before THE BEE began serving the area, a reporter describes his first trip aboard the Eastside Railway streetcar, giving people who lived on the west side of the river a glimpse of life styles on the rural eastside. On his excursion down to Sellwood from the Portland city limits, he didn’t mention the trolley stopping at West Moreland.

In fact the reporter’s description that day wasn’t exactly complimentary. It basically said the streetcar left the main street of Brooklyn and traversed through a countryside of dense forest and wild brush until it reached civilization at 13th and S.E. Miller. At the outskirts of Sellwood, passengers disembarked to attend the horse racing at City View Park, which is what we now know as Sellwood Park.

The reporter didn’t stop off at a Starbucks for a cup of coffee or possibly lunch at a Papa Haydn. Once the horseraces ended for the day, there wasn’t any stop on the return trip at a Yukon Tavern or a Kays’ Bar and Grill. There just wasn’t any West Moreland neighborhood or business district in the late 1890’s. There were just a few scattered farmhouses, some meandering farm animals, and fields of plants and flowers where Westmorelanders now live, eat, watch a movie, or mail your letters at the local Post Office.

So maybe it’s time to check the historic records of Westmoreland to find out when and where the community was established. There’s no better place to begin than with the first settlers who set foot on what is today Westmoreland soil.

Henderson Luelling, and his son Alfred, were seeking fertile ground for the grafted fruit trees they brought here over the Oregon Trail. In 1850, together with their best friend William Meek, they bought adjoining land claims around what are today the Westmoreland, Sellwood, and Garthwick neighborhoods. Alfred owned 360 acres of land from Reedway south to Knapp Street, and from the Willamette River east to about today’s 36th.

Alfred really didn’t build anything significant when he lived here. He was kept busy helping his partners grow apples, pears, and cherries in the fruit orchards that were started on acreage now filled by the Waverley Golf Course. Eventually, Alfred sold his land and moved his family to the warmer climate of California; and he convinced William Meek to sell his claim six years later, and join the Luelling clan in that sunny state.

Their donation land claim was sold to speculators and investors who divided the land into small tracts and parcels – renting out the fields, or waiting for an industrious leader to start a community there.

The owners of these parcels of land might sound familiar, if you read the street signs in Westmoreland. They included Ella Bybee, Captain George Flavel, P.J. Martin, and John C. Tolman. The owners of the City View Park Addition and E.R Brown Addition weren’t as widely known as the prominent banker, ex-Mayor and philanthropist William S. Ladd, who owned the majority of land east of Milwaukie Avenue.

When Luelling and Meek left Oregon they did not leave us a street name, but we did name Llewellyn Elementary School in honor of Alfred in 1905, even though the spelling was different.

Among other investors who later occupied land here there’s nothing on file of a Westmoreland Addition existing or even the mention of any Mr. Moreland planting crops in the area.

Lacking a natural waterway and landing point such as Sellwood enjoyhed, the Westmoreland district seemed to have little chance of starting a viable community at that time. Storefronts and family homes along Umatilla street had easy access to the river, and to the amenities of downtown Portland, but those who settled along the Milwaukie country road did not.

The town of Willsburg located just east of Sellwood used both the railway and the river to transport goods. The lumber from the Willsburg Sawmills and bricks from the Willsburg Brick factory were shipped out down Johnson Creek to the Willamette, or aboard the California and Oregon Railroad trains that provided transportation in and out of town during the start of 1868.

Westmoreland’s first chance of recognition was in 1890’s when administrators of the Eastside Railway Company began forming plans for a dedicated a streetcar line from Portland to Oregon City.

By 1893 streetcar tracks had been laid as far as the intersection of ByBee and Milwaukie. The former broad rounded corners on the north side of that intersection are still visible in the pavement, and were needed for allowing the streetcars to make the turns east and west.

After a brief break from their exhausting work, streetcar laborers turned west and continued laying tracks on Bybee, curving south onto S.E. 13th Avenue. The streetcar executives did not foresee the opening of a bank or a yogurt café on that corner. In fairness, a nationwide depression in 1890 scared off any idea of building homes and creating a business district in this area at the time.

Rumblings of urbanization began just north of where the streetcar turned, when a small group of Austrians and Germans emigrated from their homelands and began building a community, halfway between Portland and Sellwood, calling it – appropriately – Midway, which was centered in the north end of what is today Westmoreland.

Most of the men living in Midway hired on as crewmen and engineers for the railroad, while others took up positions at the Inman and Poulsen Lumber Mill near Milwaukie Avenue and Powell Boulevard to the north. Along the three-block section of Midway, they manned a Volunteer Fire Station, built a school, opened a general store, and lived peacefully in a small cluster of bungalows

Just down the road to the south, from the Midway community, near the corner of 14th and Bybee, one of the first crematoriums on the entire West Coast was being constructed, and on February 5th, 1901, the cornerstone for the Portland Cremation Association was officially laid. Today it still stands at Wilhelm’s Portland Memorial.

Because of the overcrowding of students at Sellwood School (today’s Sellwood Middle School) and the Midway School at Milwaukie and S.E. Ellis, a new elementary school building was built north of the crematorium – and Llewellyn Elementary School officially opened in 1905. A two-story addition of four rooms was soon needed, as the population of Westmoreland was increasing dramatically by 1910. Later, a new and safer brick building replaced the old wooden structure in May of 1929. A neighborhood was slowly beginning to form, but not yet with an official name.

Land development activity was beginning on the east side of Milwaukie Road, in a section included in the Ladd Crystal Springs Farm, established in 1897. A Portland Judge, J. C. Moreland, was appointed top executive to Portland’s Real Estate Board, and helped to plat a farm for the William S. Ladd investment company. Over 400 acres were purchased on both sides of the Southern Pacific railroad tracks, in both present-day Eastmoreland and Westmoreland, and converted into a state-of-the-art breeding farm for Jersey cows.

William S. Ladd died in 1893, and his son William M. Ladd took over his investments. For the next ten years the Crystal Springs Farms successfully raised and sold prized Jersey cows, and rented out the remaining acres to farmers like Emilio Rivelli.

Like many other Italians living in the outskirts of East Portland, Rivelli raised and sold crops at the markets downtown or from a wagon traveling down each residential block. His farm lay near the present day Eastmoreland Golf Course.

William Sibson and his wife Mary operated several large greenhouses for roses on 17th Avenue between Knight and Reedway Streets. They lived near C. H. Tabke, who owned a grocery in the Midway community, and sold plants to customers from his privately owned greenhouse in the rear of his house. C.H. Tabke and William Zinck operated the earliest stores in this vicinity.

Ladd’s Crystal Springs financial advisors eventually decided selling homes would be more profitable than selling beef. In 1908, the Columbia Trust Company, set up by the Ladd Estate, had ambitious plans of platting 700 lots out of 400 acres of land east of Milwaukie Road and the Southern Pacific Railroad tracks.

Where wheat fields were harvested, and Chinese peasants had roamed the grounds, the land was now being prepared for a real estate development. Sidewalks were laid, water mains installed leading from the Mt. Tabor reservoirs, and the modern convenience of electricity was brought in by wire on streetside poles – just some of the incentives that real estate agents used to attract young families interested in owning their own home.

The business section from a local newspaper advertised that, “Westmoreland was actively opened on June 1st, 1909, by the Columbia Trust Company,” and Westmoreland finally had an identity.

Before the end of the year, over two dozen homes had been erected, and a six-room dwelling built by E.G. Dickens was the first house built in that development. City Council member and long-time judge Julius Caesar Moreland was credited as the namesake of the neighborhood because of his professional résumé, and the capital he provided in the development of both Moreland neighborhoods on both sides of the railroad tracks.

Building restrictions more or less required that the minimum price for a house being built was $1,500, and lots for sale started at $500. A beautiful metal arch, anchored in cut stone and designed by A.E. Doyle with the word WESTMORELAND on it, welcomed visitors to the new neighborhood on the east side of the Milwaukie/Bybee junction. The sign was removed two years later to accommodate the widening of ByBee so the streetcar tracks to East Moreland could be completed.

The following year, Westmoreland’s commercial district began taking shape. The Henneman building opened on the southwest corner of Bybee and Milwaukie, constructed by Frank A Waldele. A doctor’s office moved to this location, and the Moreland corner supplied the new neighborhood with its first pharmacy. Julian Chybke announced the opening of the Westmoreland Drug Company on April 1st, 1913 (despite the date, the announcement was not a joke).

Westmoreland proceeded to grow by leaps and bounds during the 1920’s. The growth of the neighborhood began to challenge the Sellwood merchants along 13th Avenue with the announced opening of the C.A Butt building next to where Kay’s Bar and Grill now stands. (Both are still there.) Residents are thankful that Dr. Butt didn’t build there earlier, or they might now be living in Buttland or Buttville.

Neighborhood historian, BEE correspondent, and Westmoreland home owner Eileen Fitzsimons surmises that during the following decades, both neighborhoods were separate in the minds of many residents, “Sellwood being the old-fashioned, and Westmoreland the up-and-coming community.” THE BEE, wishing to show loyalty to longtime merchants and business along 13th Avenue and down Umatilla Street, at first mentioned very little of events and businesses in Westmoreland.

The Sellwood Bridge, which opened in 1925, finally provided easier access into the Sellwood and Westmoreland communities, and the few remaining lots in the first Westmoreland development were snatched up. By the following year, the new Ross Island Bridge, north of the community, cemented “West Moreland” as a destination. A new Moreland Theater was constructed, and Harper’s Sweet Shop and Soda Foundation moved in next door. Westmoreland’s movie theater is one of the longest operating cinemas in Southeast Portland.

By 1928, the Nieman Building on the northeast side of the Bybee-Milwaukie intersection, featuring eight windowed storefronts, was made available to merchants. Emerson’s Dry Goods, the Moreland Furniture store, W.E. Hood and Sons Grocery, Carl Hoffman’s Meat Market, and the Monarch Pharmacy occupied the corner with the elegantly decorated brick front.

The Westmoreland Community Club was formed, offering annual dances and events to the neighborhood; and the Westmoreland Improvement Association provided local merchants an opportunity to raise money for many civic improvements to the commercial district. Geneva Cockerline, co-owner with her husband Kenneth of the Moreland Theater, contributed articles to THE BEE of the time reporting on the happenings and events at Llewellyn School and around the Westmoreland district.

Merchants that once sold merchandise and wares in Sellwood moved to the desirable Westmoreland commercial area. Auto dealer P.H Dunn moved his Chevrolet dealership from 13th Avenue in Sellwood to Milwaukie Avenue just south of Bybee Boulevard – it’s now Stars Antiques. The Sellwood Transfer Company (1909) which moved and stored furniture, and sold supplies and gasoline from its garages along Umatilla Street for over 30 years, reopened along Milwaukie Avenue. In the 1950’s the Sellwood Post Office transferred its financial and delivery operations to Westmoreland on Milwaukie Avenue. In 1964 the Sellwood/Moreland Post Office built a bigger station at 16th and S.E. Bybee, where it still is, to accommodate the influx of people who wanted to live in Westmoreland.

New businesses that first started along Bybee and Milwaukie included Crantford’s Flower Shop, Drals Cleaners, Westmoreland Hardware, Sara Jane Beauty Shop, and ByBee Grocery and Meat Market, were mainstays for years. Johnson Jewelers, which arrived in 1945, installed the landmark street clock that pedestrians and motorist pass by daily even today.

Other important turning points included the development of Westmoreland Park in 1936, and the formation of a new four lane expressway (“the Super Highway”) in honor of Dr. John McLoughlin the following year. It was built along the strip of one of Portland’s first airfields, the Bloomfield Airfield.

Mr. Fred Meyer was stymied by local residents when he tried to build a “One Stop Shopping Center” along McLoughlin Boulevard; he eventually yielded to community opposition and The Westmoreland Union Manor now sits where he bought the land for the superstore.

So Westmorelanders, the choice is yours. You can celebrate the start of your community with the announced opening of the Westmoreland residential area, or choose the year when the commercial district was formed. Or you might observe the birthdates of one of the first settlers – or of the prominent judge J.C. Moreland, from whom both Eastmoreland and Westmoreland drew their names.

As Eileen Fitzsimons wisely points out, “Westmoreland and Sellwood were combined by the formation of the Sellwood Moreland Improvement League” – originally a business booster organization that included the other Moreland, Eastmoreland, as well – and today is the Sellwood and Westmoreland city-recognized neighborhood association. (Since Eastmoreland is no longer part of SMILE, its acronym probably should now be SWIL, but that does not seem likely ever to happen!)

This article is not intended as a slight on the fine residents of Sellwood. It just provides an opportunity for residents of Westmoreland to reflect on their community’s own history and past accomplishments, and to understand how two distinct residential and commercial districts have come together – under the umbrella of a single neighborhood association in Inner Southeast Portland.

Duniway Home Tour, Duniway Elementary School, Eastmoreland, Portland, Oregon
The McCloskey “English Cottage” was one of six homes on display during the 2016 Duniway Holiday Home Tour, benefiting Duniway Elementary School. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Hundreds take this year’s Duniway Holiday Home Tour


Once again this year, groups of people were seen walking Eastmoreland neighborhood streets on December 2, for the 38th annual Duniway Holiday Home Tour.

On the tour this year were six Eastmoreland homes, decked out for the Holidays.

This year, THE BEE was invited to focus on one of these homes – a graceful circa-1937 English Cottage, designed by nationally-renowned architect Herman Brookman, and now owned by Susan and Tom McCloskey.

Susan told us how the home underwent an extensive year-long remodel, with the goal of returning the home more closely to its original design and layout.

“We love all the work that was done, and we’re so happy here in our home, we’re glad to share it on the tour this year,” she said.

She and Tom graciously answered questions and pointed out features, including the restored architecture and decorations.

“The best part of being on the tour is all of the wonderful people we’ve met, both before and during the event,” Susan said.

Open to all, again this year, was a “Holiday Boutique” held in the school’s gymnasiums.

And, almost as much fun as touring homes was riding the Holiday Trolley which made a loop among the designated tour homes and the start and finish point at Duniway Elementary School. As well as being fun in and of itself, the tour is also the major fundraiser for Duniway’s PTA, reminded returning organizer Amy Rosenberg.

“Thanks to our sponsors, all proceeds from the event directly benefit Duniway,” Rosenberg said. “Specifically, it helps the school’s PTA to fund applied arts programs, classroom materials, cultural art events, field trips, and more, for the children attending Duniway.”

Portland Puppet Museum, Umatilla Street, Sellwood, Howdy Doody, Clarabelle
Now on display at the Portland Puppet Museum in Sellwood, Stephen Overton shows Holiday memorabilia from the Howdy Doody Show, and the newly-acquired character Flub-a-Dub, a mythical character made up from parts of six different animals. (Trivia: What did Flub-a-Dub cry out when he was hungry? “Meatballs! Meatballs!”) [Photo by David F. Ashton]

New collections for Christmas at Sellwood’s puppet museum


It’s looking a lot like Christmas at Portland Puppet Museum – with a giant brand-new gingerbread house in their front window, and new puppet shows and collections on display.

“Around the gingerbread house are puppets made for Bobbie and Helen Pierce, who created puppet shows in California’s Central Valley from the 1930s to 1950s,” remarked museum partner Stephen Overton, while building the display. “Now these ‘retired’ fairytale puppets have found a new permanent home here with us; and eighteen of the original puppets will be featured in the window display. 

“We’re also showcasing Pete Johnson’s puppet collection, which features figures from Myanmar (Burma), ancient China, and India. These puppets are an incredible addition to our collection, and they are spectacular!” Overton added.

When one thinks about it, an “antique” puppet from China or India wouldn’t be just a few years old; some date back nearly a century or more, he explained.

“So we have more than 100 puppets, new to the collection, that no one has ever seen here – taking visitors on a magical journey ranging from the world of the Nutcracker to exotic lands!” enthused Overton. 

The nonprofit Portland Puppet Museum is located in Sellwood at 906 S.E. Umatilla Street. Visit their website for the days and times when they’re open, and for information about puppet shows. It’s:

Safeway, Westmoreland, Boys and Girls Club
Artist’s rendering of Safeway shoppers waiting to enter the newly-expanded store on S.E. Milwaukie Avenue and Rural Street, May, 1951. (From the archives of THE BEE)

First homes, Safeway, then Boys & Girls Club – next come apartments


A mixed-used development proposal is now in the design phase for the property most recently occupied by the Fred G. Meyer Memorial Boys & Girls Club on S.E. Milwaukie Avenue in Westmoreland – the closure of which was reported in the January 2016 issue of THE BEE.  

The square block, whose cross streets are Rural and Ogden, was already zoned for its future use – which will feature commercial storefronts on Milwaukie Avenue, with four levels of apartments above. The design is not final, but preliminary information from the SMILE Land Use Committee suggests inclusion of some underground parking which may reduce the struggle to find on-street spaces in front of surrounding businesses.

With the addition of as many as 232 more apartments, the neighborhood seems well on its way to reaching or exceeding its projected total of 1,100 new units. The availability of an entire block of property (the equivalent of ten 50x100 foot lots) in the popular Sellwood-Westmoreland neighborhood made it attractive for high density redevelopment, and pushed the price well above its $3,891,000 market value.

The County Tax Assessor’s records reveal that at the end of June the new owner, NBP Capital LLC of Southeast Portland, paid $8,825,000 for the site plus an additional $825,000 for the two lots in the northwest corner, one of which presently retains its small 1937 house.

If it is true that “history repeats itself”, then the property is coming full circle, 133 years after the area was first platted for sale. By the 1920’s it was covered with single family homes, but in the 1940’s the block included some commercial use – most notably a Safeway store.

In the late 1980’s the commercial use ended (but the zoning remained) with the arrival of the nonprofit childrens’ service organization. In the future, the site will combine housing and presumably several storefront businesses facing Milwaukie Avenue.

The departure of the Boys and Girls Club reflects the improved economy and changing demographics of the SMILE neighborhood over a span longer than the 30 years that the Club has been in Westmoreland. The story links several buildings and programs aimed at supporting young people in the area.

Efforts to divert youth from antisocial behavior began in the years after World War II. There are probably some residents who survived the Depression and war years who recall that what is now a “hot” neighborhood in 2016 was a weary one in 1945. The financial pinching through the 1930’s meant minimal maintenance and repair of existing structures. This was followed by materials rationing and housing shortages in the mid-1940’s, as every available spare bedroom was rented to house shipyard workers.

At the end of the war, well into 1960’s, “juvenile delinquency” was a challenge in many city neighborhoods, including Sellwood. The Community Center on S.E. Spokane Street continued to offer programs, as it had since acquiring the old YMCA building in 1920, but athletics did not appeal to every young person.  Concerned residents, ministers and business owners formed the Sellwood Youth Activities Committee, to devise programs attractive to youth, especially males between the ages of 13-18.

Finally, in late October 1959, Sellwood PTA President Clyde Brummell asked if the Parks Bureau would consider opening new programs at the 1921 fire station at S.E. 13th and Tenino streets. The building was empty, following completion of the modern fire house at S.E. 23rd and Bybee Boulevard. The Parks Bureau declined, stating that they did not have enough staff to manage a second facility.

Three years later, in late 1962, a second plan to use the empty fire station for “vocational, not recreational programs” was made. The overture came from Howard Busse, a resident of Northeast Portland and former Youth for Christ camping director. Busse proposed training in “auto, radio and electronic repair, photography, woodworking and leatherworking” skills. In addition to these activities, staff would provide encouragement and counseling to reduce delinquency in the Sellwood District.

The proposal gained the support of the several concerned groups as well as the Metropolitan Youth Commission. Subsequently, a city ordinance was passed allowing Youth Adventures, Inc., to lease the old fire station for $1.00/year to “combat rising juvenile delinquency in Sellwood.” Fundraising commenced tp raise money for making building repairs and to pay for some minimal staff, but many of the programs were led by volunteers with donated equipment and materials.

At some point Youth Adventures became part of the city’s Boys and Girls Clubs, and the organization began searching for larger quarters. Fortunately another property became available on Milwaukie Avenue, and after fundraising and construction, the Boys and Girls Club opened in late 1989. The City of Portland was again saddled with a now even more decrepit 70-year old former fire station. But, as the Club left, another nonprofit organization stepped forward.

The Sellwood-Moreland Improvement League (SMILE), the local neighborhood association, was looking for a permanent home. In May 1990, SMILE purchased the old fire station from the city for $1.00. They then applied for a low-interest mortgage, and with hundreds of hours of donated labor, restored and modernized what became SMILE Station. 

When the Boys & Girls Club moved into its new building, its site had already undergone two waves of development. Although it is commonly known as the Westmoreland business district, the property’s legal description is City View Park Addition, Block 10, lots 1-10.

The City View Park tract extends west from Milwaukie Avenue and was opened for development in 1883, a year after the Sellwood subdivision. In that same year the future Westmoreland subdivision on the east side of Milwaukie Avenue was still farmland and remained so for another 26 years.

Construction on Block 10 was slow; a fire insurance map for 1908-09 shows only four houses scattered over its ten lots. But, by 1927, six more lots were occupied, leaving only the two lots at the southwest corner of Milwaukie and Rural unfilled.

Finally, in late November of 1940, a small article in THE BEE mentioned the construction of a new Safeway store on the empty corner. A novel attraction for customers would be a parking lot on the north end of the building, which would provide as much space for cars as the store itself (50x130 feet). In fact, that’s what gave “Safeway” its name: It was the first grocery chain to offer on-site parking, the “safe way to shop”. There was another such store up at S.E. 39th and Holgate, today the site of a Walgreens.

The new, purpose-built Safeway opened quietly by March of 1941. Interestingly, Safeway already had a presence in the neighborhood. The space they were moving out of was on the opposite (north) side of Rural Street. This was immediately remodeled and occupied, well into the 1980’s, by a Cornet 5-10-25 Cent store, which is now Stars Antiques Malls.

The original Westmoreland Safeway appeared in 1935-36, but there were also two others in the neighborhood: One on S.E. 13th near Umatilla (now the Old Sellwood Mall), and the second on S.E. 17th near Spokane (now Jake’s Place). These both closed after the new, modern Safeway opened in 1941 on the south side of Rural Street on Milwaukie.

Six years after the end of World War II, it was time to enlarge and modernize the 1941 Safeway. In January, 1951, THE BEE announced a “full-scale remodeling” of the business. The new structure was twice as large as the old one, with amenities that included air conditioning, a 72-foot-long self-service meat counter, and refrigerated produce sections.

A drawing in the newspaper indicated that in order for the expanded parking lot to accommodate 125 cars, all of the houses on the block (except for the one still standing at the corner of 16th and Rural) had been removed. Whether they were demolished or moved is unclear; at least one traveled all the way to 23rd Avenue across from Westmoreland Park (its story appeared in the August, 2013, BEE).  

On May 3, 1951 a three-day Grand Opening celebrated the completion of the enlarged business. In spite of the emphasis on self-serve shopping, store manager Walter Davidson supervised 31 full-time employees and five part-time schoolboys. The exterior was sheathed with a new material, “zorite”, and a tall, upright slab with ‘Safeway’ at the top reached high above the one-story building. The store was popular and lasted for another 28 years, but by 1979 a “Bits & Pieces” store, selling decorator fabrics, occupied the space.

The shift in the several uses of Block 10 from housing to commercial to youth services, and now back to housing and commercial, reflects the changes to the neighborhood over a span of 133 years from the late 19th into the 21st Century. Housing needs change, density increases, new residents appear – and with them, new businesses join or replace old ones.

Whether this more intense urban style is progress will be a matter of individual opinion.  But it is an improvement over the stagnation and blight that blanketed the neighborhood between 1930 and 1970. The services provided by Youth Adventures and by the Boys & Girls Club were supported by neighborhood residents.  Improved individual behavior may have helped make Sellwood-Westmoreland a more attractive neighborhood for residents and newcomers alike. 

Hopefully the funds generated by the sale of “our” Boys & Girls Club will provide similar support and improvement to underserved youth in less fortunate parts of the Portland region.

Sam Adams, Portland, Mayor, Director, World Resources Institute
Sam Adams, home in November for a Thanksgiving visit, is shown with his Woodstock parents: His mother Karalie Adams; and his stepfather Stewart Buettner. Sam evidently took this picture while holding his phone somewhere near the ceiling! (Courtesy of Sam Adams)

Sam Adams’ Woodstock mom: Proud of him


Over the years, neighborhood walks have brought this writer into contact with Woodstock resident Karalie Adams, mother of former Portland City Councilman and Mayor, Sam Adams.

Never has Karalie’s enthusiasm been higher than it is for her son’s current job as Director of World Resources Institute (WRI) United States – in Washington, D.C.

WRI is a global nonprofit that describes, on its website, its mission this way: “The World Resources Institute's mission is to move human society to live in ways that protect Earth's environment and its capacity to provide for the needs and aspirations of current and future generations.”

Karalie explains her special reason to be proud: “This new job for Sam (he started in January 2015) is an excellent opportunity to address the needs of any city in a sustainable manner. As parents, we feel hopeful that Sam's continuing effort to pursue these issues on a global scale will benefit people in many different places.”

The WRI website describes Adams’ job as being responsible for “leading WRI’s efforts to analyze and develop new policies, build political will, and support coalitions that will encourage the U.S.’s transition to a strong, low-carbon economy.”

Recently Adams gave a press conference for the Institute. Later the article was picked up by the Huffington Post.

In part, it read: “The clean energy economy is taking off. It’s bringing new opportunities for U.S. businesses, entrepreneurs, investors, and consumers. If President-elect Trump is serious about his promise to create tens of thousands of good-paying jobs, then he should push America toward a strong, clean energy future.”

We, living in Oregon, often think we are the most progressive state on energy issues. The following quote from Adams’ article might, therefore, come as a surprise:

“In Texas, the nation’s largest wind producer, wind power is now cheaper than oil and gas, accounting for 16 percent of electricity capacity over the year. In embracing wind power, Texas created nearly 25,000 jobs and cut air pollution by an amount equivalent to taking 5 million cars off the road.”

Adams’ article is quite upbeat, observing that, “Regardless of their views on climate change, most Americans support energy efficiency, and decreasing the country’s dependence on fossil fuels.”

Karalie tells THE BEE she feels thankful to be living in a neighborhood and city with a relatively clean environment.

Referring back to the content of her son’s article, she concludes, “Clean air and water keep us alive and healthy. The least we can do is be conscious of our choices.”

To read Adams’ entire article, go online to:

Love Loudly, love poster, Woodstock, Portland, Oregon, Maria Caudillo
Showing THE BEE her poster urging us to “Love Loudly” is Maria Caudillo. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Woodstock families make ‘Love Loudly’ posters


With some downtown rioting in Portland streets, reportedly sparked by the outcome of the presidential election, a Woodstock group has determined to send a decidedly different kind of message.

“Today, we’ve invited in families to make posters at an event we’re calling ‘Love Loudly’, here at Southside Swap and Play,” explained owner Alexis Jenssen on November 19.

“I think that love is stronger than hate – and things that are positive and have momentum are stronger than actions or words that try to ‘tear down’,” Jenssen told THE BEE. “We’re offering families an opportunity for them to declare that we are community that is inclusive of everyone – every race, gender, and age – you are welcome here in Woodstock.

“My goal is to act out of what we want to see happen in the world, instead of what we are afraid might happen in the world,” explained Jenssen. “I woke up with the idea one morning that we need to ‘Love Loudly’, and spread it all over. If each small community takes that on, it will spread like wildfire and make a positive difference.”

To find out more about Southside Swap and Play, go online:

Aaron Myers, Southeast Portland Rotary Club, foundation, wreath auction, Oaks Amusement Park
Ready to perform at the Southeast Portland Rotary Club’s Holiday Celebration at Oaks Park: Twins Sarah and Sophia Fisher, flanking their mentor, concert rock violinist Aaron Meyer. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

SE Rotary Holiday party raises spirits and funds


It was a festive evening for members and guests of the Southeast Portland Rotary Club, when they held their 2016 Holiday Wreath and Silent Auction, for the first time this year, at historic Oaks Amusement Park, on Saturday evening, December 3.

It was cold and rainy outside, but the Oaks Park Dance Pavilion proved cozy – merrily festooned with Holiday decorations.

Over 150 guests browsed silent auction items, including a number of major items and vacations, and a Wall of Wine auction, as well as the auction of several dozen fresh, hand-decorated wreaths, as they awaited a buffet dinner of Caesar salad, pork loin, lasagna, and scalloped potatoes.

“As in past years, we are again auctioning Holiday wreaths, playing the ‘Heads or Tails’ game, and – new this year – we will also have musical performances, including a concert by rock violinist Aaron Meyer,” smiled this year’s Southeast Portland Rotary Club President and Fundraising Chair, Joel Fields.

The event was more than just a grand Holiday party, Fields said. “This is also our major fundraiser for the year.”

Some of the money raised will go to supporting Rotary International health-oriented projects. “But a good portion of it helps support our local Rotary Youth Exchange Program, and other charitable organizations that directly benefit Inner Southeast Portland,” Fields said. “One of the local organizations supported is the Thelma Skelton ‘Meals on Wheels People’ Center on Milwaukie Avenue.

“We’ve had an anonymous donor provide up to a $5,000 match for whatever we collect for Meals on Wheels during our ‘Paddle Raise’, and I’m looking forward to taking advantage of all of that.”

In total, the club hoped to raise about $25,000 for the various causes.

A group of ten key volunteers worked to plan the event and collect auction items, Fields remarked. “We also have seven ‘Rotaractors’ – younger Rotary members – vo lunteering this evening.”

With the event in full swing, Fields looked over the room and said, “The best part is seeing a fine crowd turn out and have a good time.”

Brides For A Cause, Brooklyn neighborhood, Portland, Oregon, Erin Scharf
Erin Scharf, founder of “Brides for a Cause”, displays some of the discounted wedding gowns in the local Brooklyn showroom. (Photo by Rita A. Leonard)

Southeast’s ‘Brides for a Cause’ supports charities with discounted dresses


Who knew you could support charities through your wedding ceremony?

“Brides for a Cause”, established in 2012, is a unique business at 2505 S.E. 11th Avenue, Suite 120, in the Hosford-Abernethy neighborhood. The boutique has over a thousand wedding dresses in stock (sizes 0-24) at discounts of up to 75%. They also carry bridesmaid and mother-of-the-bride dresses.

Profits were originally directed toward “Wish Upon a Wedding”, a nonprofit that is dedicated to granting weddings and vow renewals to couples facing serious illness or life-altering circumstances.

However, in June, the shop itself became a nonprofit, allowing them to support other charities – such as “Brides Across America” and “Abby’s Closet”. Founder Erin Scharf confides to THE BEE, “We hope to support additional women-focused charities.

“Our inventory is donated from high-end salons, designers, manufacturers, and individuals,” she explains. “About half our inventory is comprised of overstock and discontinued gowns from designers and salons. We carry almost every major designer, and our inventory is wide-ranging and constantly changing. New dresses come in daily, and are purchased ‘off the rack’.

“Prices of gowns range between $150 and $1,500. Our Portland bridal store is open seven days a week, and we also sell online. Our Road Shows travel with our gowns to major west coast cities. Our Portland boutique in Brooklyn is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.”

Dress donations are accepted year-round for those who want to help fulfill the mission of recycling wedding dresses for charity. For more information, call 503/282-4000, or e-mail:

Woodstock Farmers Market, Casa de Tamales, Canby Asparagus Farms, Charles Maes
Working the grill is Charles Maes, owner of Canby Asparagus Farm Tamales, who reminds shoppers they’re open year-around in downtown Milwaukie at their restaurant, “Casa de Tamales”. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Woodstock Farmers Market closes for the winter


Established in 2011, the Woodstock Farmers Market has been a success from its first day – when then-Mayor Sam Adams rang the opening bell.

“This year was great!” enthused Market Manager Emily Murnen, just before sounding the closing bell for the 2016 season on October 30.

Although weekend rains slowed their business during our very wet October, as many as 2,000 shoppers made their way to the market week after week, not including children, Murnen said.

“It’s reassuring to see that our numbers of shoppers were up slightly from previous years, giving us very consistent growth,” Murnen told THE BEE. “Our farm vendors told us they did a little better this season than they’ve done during past seasons – and about 80% of them say they already want to come back next year.”

They’re thankful for their host, Woodstock KeyBank, upon whose parking lot the market takes place every midday Sunday in season – as well as their sponsors and volunteers, she added.

“It’s wonderful to see the community come out and support the market for five months out of the year; I’ll miss seeing them all winter long. But we will be back during the first week in June of 2017,” she said.

Southeast Events and Activities
“Breakfast Forum” to address economic issues:

The informal discussion group “Breakfast Forum”, organized and moderated by Reed Neighborhood resident Ann B. Clarkson, has its monthly meeting this morning, 7:30-8:30 a.m., at Mt. Tabor Presbyterian Church Library, 5441 S.E. Belmont. This month’s topic is a review of proposals to update economic systems in the world today, “to create a more democratic and participatory economy”. The Breakfast Forum is an informal group which meets monthly to learn about and discuss educational and political issues “in respectful ways”. Free. No registration required. For information call 503/774-9621.

For seniors in Southeast interested in “aging in place”:

Nonprofit “Eastside Village” – which is an organization, and not a place – invites anyone interested in aging at home to attend an informational meeting on the resources available and the process, at Woodstock Wine and Deli, 4030 S.E. Woodstock Boulevard, this morning, 10:30 a.m. to noon. Informational only, and free.

Today and tomorrow – Chamber music at Reed College:
Chamber Music Northwest’s “Winter Festival 2017” is today and tomorrow in Kaul Auditorium on the Reed College Campus, S.E. Woodstock Boulevard at 28th. There are four concerts of great Romantic works, performed with passion by some of the world’s greatest musical artists, including David Finckel and Wu Han, the Montrose Trio, and the Miró Quartet. Among the highlights, the Miró Quartet is joined by Martin Beaver and Clive Greensmith of the Montrose Trio to perform Johannes Brahms’s spellbinding string sextets. For more information and tickets, please go online:

“Stories from MacLaren Youth Correctional Facility”, onstage in Sellwood:
At the Sellwood Playhouse, 901 S.E. Spokane Street, tonight and tomorrow night, “Rogue Pack” presents a dramatization of the stories of young men in the custody of Oregon Youth Authority. Ten youths, ages 18 to 24, share their personal stories written during workshops conducted by playwright Francesca Piantadosi. Performed by professional actors in an evening of one-act plays directed by Patrick Walsh. “Rogue Pack provides an open forum in which these incarcerated youth, who come from surprisingly diverse cultures and backgrounds, can reveal their challenges, hopes, and desires in these troubled times.” Showtime each night is 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 at the door; $12 for students and seniors.

Volunteers welcome for planting “Springwater Meadows”:

After years of planning, SMILE’s “SNAC” committee this morning, with the help of a Metro grant, will commence the planting of the “Springwater Meadows” block along the Springwater Corridor “gap” in Sellwood. Meet at 10 a.m. at S.E. 9th Avenue between Marion and Linn Streets, and bring your gloves, shovel, and wheelbarrow if you have them. If you don’t, just bring yourself! “With your help we will welcome birds, pollinators, and other wildlife to the neighborhoods with Oregon white oaks, huckleberry, thimbleberry, and so much more. Learn about stewardship, meet your neighbors, enjoy coffee and snacks, and make a lasting positive impact in your community!”

Portland Baroque Orchestra concert at Reed College:

This evening at 7:30 p.m., in Kaul Auditorium at Reed College, the Portland Baroque Orchestra presents a concert featuring the violin concertos of Chevalier Saint-Georges, who was the son of a slave who overcame adversity to be hailed at the “Black Mozart”. In addition to several of his works, the concert also includes music by Mozart and Haydn. For more information including tickets, go online to:

Brooklyn Cooperative Preschool Open House:

This morning, the Brooklyn Cooperative Preschool holds its Open House in the Reed neighborhood, in the back of the Reedwood Friends Church, at 2901 S.E. Steele Street (across from Reed College). Prospective families may visit the school, play in the classrooms, talk with current members, and meet the teacher. Visitors are free to come and go at their convenience, between the hours of 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. Kids can explore activities and play in the three classrooms, while parents meet the teacher and learn more about the nonprofit school.

Dedication party for relic of old Sellwood Bridge:
This afternoon, from 1 to 3 p.m., there will be a dedication party at SMILE Station, S.E. 13th and Tenino in Sellwood, for the last intact piece of the railing from the original and historic Sellwood Bridge – now mounted in front of the flagpole on the front lawn of SMILE Station, where everyone can view a part of the city’s history. The railing was part of a larger neighborhood project led by Rachel Ginocchio to create art out of the old bridge, and at the same time raise money for public education. Everyone is invited to come and thank over 50 volunteers, and the local businesses who made the bridge project possible, and to see Sellwood Middle School receive a check for over $5,000 from the proceeds of the project. Friends, family, and neighbors are all invited to come to the unveiling, munch on cookies, and share Old Sellwood Bridge stories.

For teens – make your own leather cuff:

At this Sellwood Branch Library workshop 1-3 p.m. this afternoon, teens will design their own leather cuff. Puppetkabob will demonstrate how to pattern and cut various shapes; how to add snaps to fit; and how to embellish – with an industrial hole puncher, colorful cords, and specialty paints. For teens in grades 6-12. Free, but space is limited, so come early. The Sellwood Library is on the corner of S.E. Bidwell Street and 13th Avenue.

All Saints’ annual “Crab Feast” today in Woodstock:
The annual “Crackin’ Crab Feast!” at All Saints Episcopal Church, on Woodstock Boulevard take place this afternoon. Two seatings are available: 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the church hall on 4033 S.E. Woodstock Boulevard. Tickets make great Holiday presents and stocking stuffers! “A bargain at $37.50”, the meal comes with fresh crab, salad, and bread. A cash bar is available as well, and children 6 and under eat free with a macaroni and cheese option. All proceeds support All Saints’ outreach ministries. For tickets or more info, go online: – or call Nancy at 1-916/202-7132.

Renters’ Rights Workshop at Woodstock Library:

Know the law so you can protect yourself. Understand your rights and responsibilities at all stages of the renting process: Searching for a home, filling out applications, paying deposits and fees, getting repairs made, moving out, and more. Free, but seating is limited, so come early to be assured a seat. The Woodstock Branch Library is at the corner of S.E. Woodstock Boulevard and 49th Avenue.  

Woodstock Library Teen Comics Book Group:

Engage in conversation about comics; exchange perspectives about characters, design and plot; and get to know other teens. It’s free this afternoon 4:30-5:30 p.m., and is free also on February 23 at the same hour. The Woodstock Branch Library is on the corner of S.E. 49th Avenue and Woodstock Boulevard.

Homeschoolers ask the experts – “people with cool jobs”:

Everyone welcome for monthly special presentations from local community experts, at the Sellwood Branch Library. A short Q&A and time for pictures will follow each presentation. This afternoon, 1-2 p.m., meet a neighborhood police officer. Free, but seating is limited, so come early. S.E. 13th at Bidwell Street in Sellwood.

Free “tech help” at Woodstock Library:

Do you have technology questions? Meet one-on-one for 30 minutes with a friendly and knowledgeable Tech Helper, who will help you find answers to questions about mobile devices, websites, downloading, e-readers, getting started with tech, and much more. “If you need help with a smartphone, iPad, or tablet, please bring it with you – we may or may not be able to help.” Free, but registration is required; register in the library, or by calling 503/988-5234. The library is on the corner of S.E. Woodstock Boulevard and 49th Avenue.

“Breakfast Forum”, rescheduled:

The monthly “Breakfast Forum”, organized and moderated by Reed Neighborhood resident Ann B. Clarkson, has rescheduled its December program on the future of the Progressive Party, featuring speaker David Delk, for this morning – 8:30 a.m. in the Mt. Tabor Presbyterian Church Library, 5441 S.E. Belmont. The group meets monthly to learn about and “discuss political issues in respectful ways”. Free. No registration required. For information call 503/774-9621.

Blood Drive in Westmoreland:

The Red Cross will be taking blood donations at Moreland Presbyterian Church this afternoon, 4-7 p.m., at 1814 S.E. Bybee Boulevard. Make a reservation to donate by calling 1-800/733-2767. Walk-ins accommodated as the schedule allows; help save a life with a blood donation.

Portland Baroque Orchestra features Bach Suites at Reed:

This afternoon at 3 p.m. in Kaul Auditorium at Reed College on S.E. Woodstock Boulevard, the Portland Baroque Orchestra, Paul Butt, director and harpsichord, will lead the Portland Baroque Orchestra in Bach’s complete Orchestral Suites in their original scoring. For more, and tickets, go online:

Scrabble at the Sellwood Branch Library:

Attention word lovers: Have fun while exercising your brain, improving your vocabulary, and making new friends – by playing Scrabble at the Sellwood Branch Library this afternoon, 2-4 p.m. Beginning, intermediate, and advanced players are welcome. Free. Bring your own set, or use one of the library’s. The address is S.E. Bidwell Street at 13th Avenue.

Blood Drive in Sellwood:

The Red Cross will be taking blood donations at Sellwood Baptist Church this afternoon, 1-6 p.m., at 1104 S.E. Spokane Street; the blood drive is sponsored by the Sellwood New Seasons Market. Make a reservation to donate by calling 1-800/733-2767. Walk-ins accommodated as the schedule allows; help save a life with a blood donation.


     Useful HotLinks:     
Your Personal "Internet Toolkit"!

Charles Schulz's "PEANUTS" comic strip daily!

Portland area freeway and highway traffic cameras

Portland Police

Latest Portland region radar weather map

Portland Public Schools

Multnomah County's official SELLWOOD BRIDGE website

Click here for the official correct time!

Oaks Amusement Park

Association of Home Business (meets in Sellwood)

Local, established, unaffiliated leads and referrals group for businesspeople; some categories open

Weekly updates on area road and bridge construction

Translate text into another language

Look up a ZIP code to any U.S. address anywhere

Free on-line PC virus checkup

Free antivirus program for PC's; download (and regularly update it!!) by clicking here

Computer virus and worm information, and removal tools

PC acting odd, redirecting your home page, calling up pages you didn't want--but you can't find a virus? You may have SPYWARE on your computer; especially if you go to game or music sites. Click here to download the FREE LavaSoft AdAware program, and run it regularly!

What AdAware doesn't catch, "Malwarebytes" may! PC's--particularly those used for music downloads and online game playing--MUST download these free programs and run them often, to avoid major spyware problems with your computer!

Check for Internet hoaxes, scams, etc.

Here's more on the latest scams!

ADOBE ACROBAT is one of the most useful Internet document reading tools. Download it here, free; save to your computer, click to open, and forget about it! (But decline the "optional offers" -- they are just adware

Encyclopedia Britannica online

Newspapers around the world

Stain removal directions

Convert almost any unit of measure to almost any other

Research properties in the City of Portland

Local source for high-quality Shaklee nutritionals

Note: Since THE BEE is not the operator of any of the websites presented here, we can assume no responsibility for content or consequences of any visit to them; however we, personally, have found all of them helpful, and posted them here for your reference.


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KPDX, Channel 49 (Digital/HDTV broadcast channel 30)

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