May Day tradition starts in Lents: Great for people, less so for the pig

Was their ‘May Day Pig Roast’ successful? Take look at the delighted participants …

These are some of the 75 Lents neighbors who are picking up their meals for dining alfresco at the first annual “May Day Pig Roast”.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Being willing to try new ideas to build community has become the theme with leaders of the Lents Neighborhood Association (LNA) these days.

Their latest idea was to host a “May Day Pig Roast” on the evening of May 1, at Crossroads Plaza in Lents Town Center, SE 92nd Avenue and Foster Road.

Bandon Rhodes of Rolling Oasis Grocers – the greengrocer for the event – spends a moment with LNA Chair Jesse Cornett.

“You remember when we did the Pop-up Coffee Shop a few weeks ago?” asked LNA Chair Jesse Cornett. “Folks were really thrilled with it.

“As a take-away from that, there was a pretty lively discussion about having another event, specifically holding a dining event, such as a pig roast,” Cornett told East Portland News, as he stood near the serving area where savory scents wafted through the air.

The local caterers of the event, Jennifer Dean and Erik Smykal of Plum Portland, serve up roast pork dinners.

“Here at the Crossroads Plaza space, with the new Lents Kiosk, we’re trying to really build community right now,” Cornett went on. “We found people to help with the logistics of cooking a pig, which is not easy. And, a Lents-based business provided all of the fruits and veggies for us.”

Pre-sales were brisk; the event “sold out” all of their 75 tickets.

A couple of people in this group invited their “close college friends” do dine with them at Crossroads Plaza, in Lents.

“But, we still invited everyone to come, and bring their dinner – or buy food-to-go at restaurants in the area – and come join us,” Cornett said. “Our hope for this event, and others like it, is that it brings positive visibility to our neighborhood.”

© 2015 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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