Business districts celebrate – with food, music, awards

From north to south across outer East Portland, take a look at how the Gateway Area, Midway, and Foster Area business associations ring out 2012 …

Members and guests of the Midway Business Association enjoy the David Douglas High School Concert Choir performance during their Holiday Gathering.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Last week, East Portland News brought you the story of the Parkrose Business Association annual Holiday dinner and awards [CLICK HERE to see that article].

Although smaller in scope than the Parkrose event, three other business districts also celebrated the arrival of Holidays with lively gatherings – all within one week.

Midway Business Association

Midway Business Association President Bill Dayton, of Pizza Baron, welcomes guests to the Holiday Gathering.

Around noontime on December 11, the Pizza Baron Restaurant on SE 122nd Avenue began to fill with businesspeople, as the annual Holiday Gathering of the Midway Business Association got underway.

The restaurant swelled with music, thanks to the David Douglas High School Concert Choir, under the direction of Director Christopher Silva. The group performed a cappella renditions of classical music and traditional Christmas tunes.

Some of the many guests at this annual event listen to a presentation.

About 40 members and guests dined on pizza of all varieties, networked, and heard brief presentations about the organization – and the allied Division Midway Alliance, a “Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative” group.

Wrapping up the lunchtime gathering, several guests won door prizes, ranging from fine bottles of wine, to hand-made chocolates, and gift baskets.

Gateway Area Business Association

Santa Claus (we suspect it may be Kevin Minkoff CPA, in costume) brings surprise Holiday greetings to members and guests at the Gateway Area Business Association Holiday Party.

After the workday, on December 13, the Gateway Area Business Association (GABA) Holiday Party was in full swing at the offices of Opti-Con, Inc., courtesy of board member David Panichello.

With the help of his magical keyboard, Gordon Neal Herman of Another Time Music provided outstanding musical entertainment and a festive atmosphere. The group of about 30 folks dined on prepared croissant sandwiches and finger salads.

GABA President Fred Sanchez presents the 2012 “Citizen of the Year” plaque to Portland Police Bureau East Precinct Officer Michael Gallagher.

“We’re privileged again to announce our ‘Gateway Citizen of the Year’,” GABA President Fred Sanchez, of Realty Brokers, announced.

“Thank you to educational superintendents [Dr.]Karen [Fischer] Gray [of Parkrose] and Don Grotting [of David Douglas] for choosing our 12th annual honoree – this year, Portland Police Officer Michael Gallagher. He, his wife and daughter will ride as Grand Marshalls in the 2013 GABA Fun-O-Rama Parade.”

Later, after Gallagher accepted, he confided to East Portland News, “I’m very honored by this award. I’ve worked with the association as long as I’ve been in the bureau.”

Host David Panichello of Opti-Con, Inc., welcomes reelected Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz – a previous “GABA Citizen of the Year” – to this year’s festivities.

Also at the meeting, the 2013 GABA Membership Directory was unveiled by the GABA member who produced it, Dean Wiest of Wholesale Printing USA. These colorful booklets will be available at each GABA meeting, while they last.

Foster Area Business Association

Guests look to see who’s arrived, at the Foster Area Business Association Holiday Meeting.

In the rustic setting of the lodge at “Carts on Foster”, folks associated with the Foster Area Business Association (FABA) held their Holiday Party on December 18.

Attendees had the opportunity to bid on silent auction items, ranging from hand-made macadamia nut chocolates, to kitchen appliances, DVDs, and books.

Guests graze a table laden with snacks during the FABA Holiday meeting.

About 15 people attended the evening gathering that included snacks of shrimp, “sliders” and other appetizers provided by the food court vendors and volunteers.

During their formal business meeting during which FABA and neighborhood leaders highlighted some of the advancement made by the business organization, neighborhood associations and Foster Green Eco District.

FABA President Seth Richardson, of Metacon Bicycles, listens to reports about projects taking place along SE Foster Road, from SE 50th Avenue to SE 122nd Avenue.

Meet the members in 2013

All of these neighborhood business districts hold monthly meetings. You’ll find their times and locations by checking the East Portland News Community Calendar: CLICK HERE to see that page!

© 2012 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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