Gateway Fun-O-Rama returns – this year, in Parkrose

Find out why they moved this traditional Gateway event over to Parkrose High School. And, take a look at all the fun that was had, at this delightful summertime event …

Portland Police Bureau East Precinct Cadets help out, by monitoring the giant Bounce Castle at the 2010 Gateway Fun-O-Rama Community Fair.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
The original idea by the Gateway Area Business Association (GABA) committee members seemed sound: Hold the 2010 Gateway Fun-O-Rama Community Fair & Cruise-in at the empty lot where the JJ North’s Chuckwagon Restaurant once stood, on NE Halsey Street.

> Officials say the vacant property will, someday, become a City of Portland park. To read our story about that proposed park, CLICK HERE.

However, the GABA event planners gave up on the site when they were quoted what they felt were astronomically high permit fees for holding their traditional summertime event in this space.

Portland Fire & Rescue Firefighter Marcus Donaldson shows Mikayla Armstrong around his fire rig. Look at her face: Who says only little boys like playing on fire engines?

Scrambling to find a new location, GABA volunteers talked with the Parkrose School District – and got permission to hold this year’s Fun-O-Rama at Parkrose High School. About a month before the event, they finalized the date – Sunday, July 18.

The date and location provided a good alternative to those not inclined to hop on their bicycles and ride to the East Portland Exposition in Powellhurst-Gilbert, as their long-time promoted event on the same date was tied in with the City of Portland’s Sunday Bikeways project.

This year’s Parkrose event included a Classic Car Cruise-in; live music by the classic rock and blues band “The Stingrays”; fun for the kids, including a Super Bounce Castle; and lots of great food – ranging from BBQ chicken, to pulled pork, pizza, tacos, hot dogs, and more.

Students of Choi’s Martial Arts Academy provided high-kicking, board-breaking action demonstrations.

Business and non-profit exhibitors are lined up side-by-side – along with food vendors run by school and non-profit organizations.

GABA’s President, Ajnesh “AJ” Prasad of Columbia State Bank, and the organization’s treasurer, Karen Montez from Synergy Restoration & Construction LLC, give us a smile.

“The proceeds from the 2010 GABA Fun-O-Rama,” revealed event chair Lou Fontana of Parkview Christian Retirement Community, “supported Loaves & Fishes, Parkrose High Scholarships, the Oregon Humane Society, the Salvation Army, Parkrose Athletics & Band, David Douglas Athletics & Band, Centennial Athletics and band, and the Northeast Portland Rotary Club.”

2010 GABA Fun-O-Rama
Photo Album

“Gentle Biff” squeaks up balloon animals.

GABA VP Lee Powell, a Farmer’s Insurance agent, greets people at his table.

Face-painter Barbara Tolbert finds many takers for her special brand of “beauty makeover”.

Dignity Memorial’s Natasha Tjaarda and John Brutto, both of the Gateway Little Chapel of the Chimes, look like they’re having a good time, even though everyone present was still alive.

The Stingrays play and sing rock-and-roll favorites, fronted by singer Donna Beaudin.

Folks stop to look at specialty cars, ranging the “muscle Z28” to the rare Delorian (which sadly lacked both a hyper-flux capacitor and Michael J. Fox).

Kylie Sepich and Carlea Sundin and Ralph and Karen Goodwin say they enjoy showing off their folks’ 1929 Shay’s Model A Rumble Seat Roadster.

Larry Fry and Joe Sidey and Kris McVicar of Northeast Portland Rotary offer up their pulled pork specialties.

Centennial High School student Jamaika Gilbert, sponsor Kathy, and students Becky Emert and Zach Miller, tempt visitors with their taco salads.

David Douglas Dads Club volunteer John Flaherty and burger chef (and Club President) Dan Deardorff provide offerings “hot off the grill”.

Norma Johnson and Londa Sundin from the Parkrose Bronco Boosters say their Round Table Pizza is a hot seller.

Instructor Cliff Doran, of Choi’s Martial Arts Academy, watches as his young students give the kicking post a good pounding. “We focus on developing character over physical ability,” he confides.

GABA Appreciation Fair scheduled for September 9
Instead of their noontime meeting, this year’s “Appreciation Fair at 111th Square” will be held from 5:30 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. at NE Halsey Street at NE 111th Avenue.

“It’s the fourth annual celebration to say thanks to Portland’s first responders,” said event chair Fred Sanchez. “Come meet, and thank, your Portland Police Officers, Portland Fire & Rescue, and Multnomah County Sheriff’s Department members.”

The evening event includes a flag ceremony, gun salute, motorcycle cruise-in, and Hot Dog eating contest. Food will be available for purchase from a local business, Frankie’s Franks. For more information, see GABA’s website: CLICK HERE to visit it!

© 2010 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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