See why these hard-working law enforcement folks in green spend their free time bussing tables, pouring water, and delivering orders, at this Mall 205 area restaurant …

Mall 205 Red Robin customers Christopher, Sam and Kathy Calkins are welcomed by Dep. Jordan Philpot.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Last month, customers at the Mall 205 Red Robin Restaurant were treated to extra-special service by green-uniformed law enforcement personnel.

“We’re here to earn tips to support Special Olympics of Oregon,” explained Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) Lt. Jason Gates.

Brad Bingham, GM Mall 205 Red Robin, Elyse Seisser, Red Robin server; Multnomah County Sheriff’s Department Dep. Jonathan Zwick; Dep. Joshua Zwick (brothers); and Dep. James Erickson — at Tip-A-Cop day, serving the families of sisters-in-law Melissa Baldwin and Valerie Harvey.

“Today, we have two teams here, each working four hour shifts. All of the donations we get are tax deductible,” Gates told us. “All of these deputies are volunteering their own time for this. Volunteerism is important to us at MCSO.”

Marilyn Davanzo and Joey Davanzo are served by MSCO Dep. James Erickson.

The restaurant’s manager, Brad Bingham, said that they love hosting this outer East Portland event. “We’re proud to be participating an event that gives so much back to the community. And, the deputies are surprisingly good workers!”

In his last act as Public Information Officer for MCSO (he’s going on to other duties), Lt. Jason Gates filled us in on the statistics: Twelve MCSO members volunteered during the 8 hour event; 246 patrons of Red Robin donated to the Special Olympics.

“In total,” he reported, “we raised $3,127.38 — an increase of about $500.00 over last year. We’re grateful for the opportunity to give back to our community.”

Deputies get their “marching orders” during the shift crew meeting led by Red Robin staff members. Check out those official law enforcement aprons!

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

See why failing to heed the “rules of the road” left this bicycle rider in very serious condition with a head injury, after he darted out in front of a car …

Portland Police Bureau Major Crash Team members piece together the accident, near Portland International Airport, that sent a man to the hospital with what officials call “a life-threatening head injury.”

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
An accident that seriously injured a bicyclist at 5:01 p.m. on October 18, on NE Marine Drive near Portland International Airport, shut down the area’s northernmost street for hours, while Major Crash Team members of Portland Police Bureau’s Traffic Division sorted out the details.

Paths cross with disastrous results
It was about 90 minutes before sunset, but the sky was dark with storm clouds. An automobile was traveling at the speed limit; a bicyclist was also westbound on the bike path that parallels the street.

Two witnesses at the scene say the 68-year-old bicyclist was traveling very quickly and didn’t not appear to slow down – or even hesitate – at the bicycle/pedestrian crosswalk stop sign. The bike rider darted southbound, into the path of the car, flipped off his bicycle, and smashed into the windshield of the car.

“The bicyclist was in a marked crosswalk, but failed to stop for a stop sign prior to crossing the street,” confirmed Portland Police Bureau spokesman, Sgt. Brian Schmautz.

Police say the bicyclist didn’t heed the stop sign; turning directly into the path of an oncoming car.

“The bicyclist, Robert Verrinder, was immediately taken into surgery at Emanuel Hospital with a life-threatening head injury. He remains in critical condition,” Schmautz added. “The motorist remained at the scene, and is cooperating with the investigation. Speed and impairment do not appear to be factors in the collision.”

Because of the incline at the crosswalk, investigators believe the 30-year-old motorist may not have seen the bicyclist until he was directly in front of her.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

See how the administration of Parkrose High School got families to come in and meet their student’s teachers, and become more involved in the school. And, discover how the “School Improvement Plan” there is helping freshmen turn into graduating seniors …

Roy Reynolds says he looks forward to a successful school year at Parkrose High.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
In past years, the turnout for Parkrose High School’s “Back to School Night” – a time when parents are encouraged to come to the campus and informally meet with their kids teachers – was often poor.

“This year, we did it a little differently,” reports principal Roy Reynolds. “We offered a community dinner. To better form a community of education, we’re creating a feeling of community by ‘breaking bread’ together.”

Pitching Bronco shirts are Parkrose High students Derek Herman, Jr, Hang Nguyen, and Toyin Oyemaja.

During the spaghetti dinner, the school’s great jazz band plays, families and students mingle around tables in the atrium, Reynolds speaks briefly, and the families are sent off to meet – and “make a connection” with – teachers throughout the school.

This year’s focus
“We’ve been working on providing a rigorous education,” says Reynolds. “But another topic is the ‘support part’ of education. One can stress rigor – but if you don’t support it – you’re not there.

“Our School Improvement Plan is focusing on ninth graders. For students who aren’t making the grade, we have planned a series of interventions. We want to get any struggling freshmen back on track.”

These interventions, Reynolds explains, might include mandatory tutoring either during or after school.

“Tutoring will no longer be optional. If you leave it up to the struggling student, we’re indicating to them that extra learning experiences aren’t really important.

“We’re not requiring this because we’re upset at them – it is because we want our freshmen to become seniors, and graduate. Their freshman year sets up their whole high school career.”

Instructor — and director of Parkrose High’s renowned choral program — Lesley Bossert confers with parents and students during Back-to-School night.

Was the evening a success? Reynolds says he thinks so. And, judging from the full parking lots – and the cars lining NE Shaver Street – we’d agree!

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

Not all SE Portland celebrations are German! Learn why the Chinese celebrate their harvest season by making colorful lanterns …

The Lynch family – dad Chris, as well as Melissa, a Lewis 3rd grader and Elizabeth, a Lewis Elementary 1st grader – show their paper lanterns.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
While many folks were enjoying a touch of Bavarian culture at Oaks Park’s Oktoberfest, others were learning the Chinese way of celebrating the harvest season, by making paper lanterns at the Woodstock Branch Library late in September.

“We make lanterns as part of our mid-autumn festival,” explained instructor Jean Choy. “Because the brightly colored lantern reminds us of the moon, we use them as part of our celebration.”

“On the date of our festival, the moon is the biggest and shines the brightest,” Choy told us. “Actually, the celebration is for three days. We say ‘hello, moon’ on the first day, and say ‘goodbye, moon’ on the third day.”

Instructor Jean Choy tells families at the Woodstock Library about the Chinese tradition behind lantern making, while she gives construction tips.

We asked Choy why there was a rabbit on each of the lanterns the kids and parents were making.

“We put a bunny face on the lantern because legend says a bunny rabbit lives in the moon. His role is to make the medicine of longevity; for a long, healthy life.”

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

You don’t have to travel far to enjoy one of the best Oktoberfest events! Take a look at the fun everyone had at the Oaks Park event, right here …

These fun musical cut-ups, providing a rollicking good time, are the High Five Band from The Dalles.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
While some people prefer to travel for an hour or more to attend a traditional German Oktoberfest harvest celebration, thousands of Portlanders take in the same sort of festivities each year at Oaks Park.

From small musical groups to a full polka band, sounds of lively music drifted through the century-old amusement park from as many as three venues at the same time.

“My lederhosen are original, and da genuine article,” confides Al Planatscher – an immigrant from Tiraol, Austria. “I make all these pants myself, since 25 years.”

Daughter and dad Kristy and Byron White drove together to dance and dine at the Oaks’ Oktoberfest – all the way from Bellingham, Washington.

Food was savory and plentiful. Guests dined on sausages, schnitzels, and all the trimmings. The made-while-you-watch soft pretzel we purchased was the best we’ve eaten.

As we strolled around the temporarily-Germanic-decorated park, we stopped to talk with Oaks Park’s Senior Manager, Mary Beth Coffey. “I agree with people who say that our Oktoberfest is ‘the pretty one’. Set in our wooded area, overlooking the Willamette River, overseas guests say it reminds them of their homeland.”

This Portland choir sings traditional German songs. The group’s name, Liederkreis, means “Circle of Songs”.

When the crowd chants, “Ziggy, zoggy, ziggy, zoggy, hoy, hoy, hoy, hoy”, everyone lifts their beverage of choice, in a toast.

Because they’re celebrating German culture, Coffey says they strive for authenticity. “We have really worked at having German food, bands, and beer. The German Society is here, and the German School does the kids’ events. It is a way for people to celebrate a different culture for a day, isn’t it?”

The Portland-based Tyrolean Dancers provide an energetic, swirling, fancy-stepping demonstration.

Flap, Flap, Beak Beak, everyone! The traditional Oktoberfest Chicken Dance is led by The Oregon Chicken!

Then, we hit Coffey with the big question: “Do you dance the Chicken Dance?”

“Yes,” she replied with a big smile, “I indeed do the Chicken Dance. The Oregon Fryer Commission is our main sponsor, so I’ve had the pleasure of dancing with ‘The Oregon Chicken’ as he leads it, front and center.”

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

Take a look and you’ll see why neighbors say this residential SE Portland street should be designated a “no passing zone” …

Police say the driver of this Acura shouldn’t even been on the road – his driver’s license is suspended!

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
“We really need to make SE 136th Avenue between Holgate and Powell a no-passing zone,” comments neighbor Mary Walker, as she looks at the wreckage about to be towed from the street.

Walker says she heard the accident that sent both drivers to OHSU on October 5 at about 9:30 p.m. “I was in the kitchen. I heard this huge bang. I mean, it was a really big boom. I ran out and looked, and called 911. The police were here in two minutes.”

As she walked three doors down to look at the remains of an offset, head-on collision, Walker said the horn of one car was still blaring.

Walker, who is known to East Precinct cops – because she volunteers to restock their patrol cars’ trunks, several days a week – said there was another accident on her road earlier in the day. “This street gets a surprising amount of traffic. And, it seems people are always driving in a hurry; they pass cars when it isn’t safe.”

The Acura hit the Thunderbird with such force, it bent the frame.

Shouldn’t have been driving
According to Sgt. Brian Schmautz, spokesman for the Portland Police Bureau, 28-year-old Lay Nguyen was driving a gray 1991 Acura Intrepid northbound and was “stuck” in traffic. However, Nguyen shouldn’t have been behind the wheel at all – his driver’s license is suspended.

Nguyen whipped out of his lane, stepped on it, and smashed, almost head-on, in to 44-year-old Dean Roundy as he was driving south in his 1993 burgundy Ford Thunderbird just south of SE Francis Street.

“Nguyen was cited for Careless Driving and Driving While Suspended,” Schmutz states.

As we watched tow trucks jockeying to pick up the totaled-out vehicles, Walker says, “I hope the city will take a look at our street before someone gets killed.”

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

If you’ve got kids, you probably know “Anansi the Spider” from the book written by Eric Kimmel. If not, see why an auditorium full of young fans welcomed him – and his famous spider – to their school …

-1 Using a tambourine as he tells his story “Anansi and the Moss Covered Rock”, nationally-known children’s author Eric Kimmel gets a rock star’s reception from kids at Clark Elementary School.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

For some grade-schoolers, learning to read and write is hard work. So, educators at William Clark Elementary School on SE 92nd Avenue, just south of SE Washington Street, came up with an idea to get them involved in literature.

“We thought that inviting Eric Kimmel, a Portland-based author, was a good way to kick off our month-long reading campaign,” explains Kathryn Golden, a 3rd grade teacher, and Principal Intern at the school.

“Our kids here at Clark, and in our SUN School program, have been reading stories about “Anansi the Spider” – Kimmel’s central character in many of his children’s books,” Golden tells us before the event on October 2. “We’ve been doing classroom activities with his books. He’s become like a rock star to them.”

-2 Ron McDonald, SUN program teacher, and Kim Vorasai, kindergarten teacher, serve pizza to students before Eric Kimmel speaks.

As the SUN School kids are enjoying a pizza meal before meeting Kimmel, Joel Todd, the site manager for the Clark Elementary SUN school, echoes Golden’s sentiments. “The energy generated by being able to meet a nationally-famous author has my kids freaking out with joy. They can’t believe they get to meet him and ask questions. The way it has gotten our kids into reading – it is awesome. I love it.”

As the auditorium starts to fill, and the 60 SUN School kids start filing in, we have the chance to speak with Kimmel.

-3 Joel Todd, SUN site manager Kathryn Golden 3rd Grade Teacher, and Principal Intern, and author Eric Kimmel before the program.

Professor turns children’s author

“I’m a former professor of education at Portland State University; and Professor Emeritus, school of administration,” Kimmel says. “But, I’ve been writing for kids for forty years. I’m here tonight to do a program focusing on a new book coming out. [The book] is still in process. I thought it might be fun for everyone to get a look at what goes into making a book.

“I’ll show the kids edited manuscripts and some pictures from the artists. They’ll will learn that books don’t just pop out of your head, ready to put on the library shelf.”

Kimmel says his stories don’t moralize. “Your job is to simply tell a good story. There is a beginning, middle, and end. A character has a problem, and ends up on a higher or lower plane, based on his decisions. Just like life!”

-4 Eric Kimmel tells the story of Anansi the Spider. The kids have been reading the book, and help by chiming in when asked to do so.

Says sharing his process is important

For Kimmel, says talking about his work is a pleasure. “It is important for kids to know books are created by real people. And, that creating a book is a process.”

Learning to read and write, while vitally important, is still difficult for many kids, Kimmel explains.

“I want kids to see that thinking is the first step in writing. You might actually have to think for quite some time before you write. And, the story will go through several revisions. And, it’s important that they realize that there is a ‘story behind the story’ – books are put together from bits of this and that.”

Another idea Kimmel imparts is “When you have a good idea, you write it down. Be tough on yourself and look it over. Rewrite it. Most books on the library shelf have been rewritten many times. Don’t think that, because your first draft isn’t very good, that you’re not a good writer.”

Kimmel, the rock star of kid’s books

As the author is introduced, he’s greeted with a thundering ovation. As the room quiets down, he starts by telling – not reading – a story about one of his characters, Anansi the Spider.

-5 When Kimmel asks, “What happens next?” – most of the kids know the answer because they’ve been reading the book at school.

Within minutes, Kimmel has the attention of his youthful audience. They love the story. And, ask questions, to learn more about the “story behind the story”. Perhaps one of these kids will, because of this experience, go on to become a famous children’s author some day.

To learn more about Kimmel, see his web site: CLICK HERE.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

Discover why their educational concept is a far cry from “high school shop class”! See how their idea can turn potential high-school flunk-outs into good citizens – with well-paying jobs …

In this building on NE 158th Avenue, the Academy of Architecture, Construction & Engineering will open its doors to students in September, 2008.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
After a distinguished career in education, including being the Superintendent of Parkrose School District for eight years until his retirement in June, Michael Taylor earned the right to put his feet up and relax.

But loafing isn’t in Taylor’s nature. He’s on to his next challenge: Creating a charter school in outer East Portland.

Speaking before the Parkrose Business Association, Taylor, and Oregon Business Congress (OBC) executive director Dr. Richard O’Connor, PhD, outlined their plan to open the “Academy of Architecture, Construction & Engineering (ACE)”.

Four years in the making
“We were approached by the Oregon Building Congress about creating a construction industry related academy four years ago,” Taylor began. “Because the building we were considering was located in Portland, we had to secure the charter through Portland Public Schools. It didn’t work out.”

Michael Taylor (sitting in his new office at the school) says he didn’t give up on the construction academy idea, even though they were spurned by Portland Public Schools four years ago.

But the idea so intrigued Taylor, he kept working on it.

“Terry Kneisler, Superintendent of the Reynolds School District, and I went back to OBC and told them that we’re still interested. Reynolds, Centennial, Parkrose, and Gresham-Barlow School Districts are the educational partners in the academy.”

Hybrid program provides skills and social life
“Public high schools are idealistic. Schools don’t necessarily want to produce laborers. They are about ‘opening doors’, and introducing students to opportunities and possibilities,” Taylor said.

“High schools do well at providing general education. And kids need the social engagement they get in a public high school,” he went on. “But they don’t do well connecting education to the ‘real’ world.”

ACE students will get the best of both worlds, Taylor explained, because they attend the academy – and their “home” high school – on alternate days.

The building that will house the ACE Academy is fully-equipped with modern classrooms and spacious construction laboratory areas.

Not reinventing the wheel
Instead of creating the school from scratch, Taylor said they modeled the ACE academy on East County’s Center for Advanced Learning (CAL).

“CAL provides training in manufacturing, information technology, and the medical professions. The idea of a charter school wrapped around the construction trades makes sense.”

While the new academy’s concept is unique, Taylor says, “What is different is how this partnership is coming together. Typically, the schools are the majority partner; in this case, they’ve agreed to be minority partners.”

More than shop classes
“The concept of specialized learning academies really makes sense,” explained Taylor, “because many students don’t have the money or desire to get a college degree.

“But because of the diverse training available at ACE, students may come in thinking they will learn to swing a hammer, but end up leaving as graduates who want to become architects.”

Richard O’Connor, Oregon Building Congress, says this new charter school will help students earn family-wage jobs, plus provide able workers for the construction trades.

OBC: Ten years of construction education
OBC’s Executive Director, Richard O’Connor, told us, “The organization was created in 1921, and has successfully dealt with industry issues. In more recent years, it searched for a mission; it was like a ‘hammer looking for a nail’ until we developed the ‘Building Futures’ educational program.”

About 10 years ago, OBC started working with high schools, helping them create “construction academies”. They created teacher development programs that integrated construction skills with traditional math and English courses.

Since their “Building Futures” program connects academics with real-life job skills, O’Connor continued, “Kids become jazzed about taking more math courses and finishing high school. Upon graduation, many students took more schooling and entered trade apprenticeships.”

“We’ve successfully worked with more than a thousand teachers,” confided O’Connor. “Because our courses were provided by top industry professionals, the teachers rate our program highly. Although the ACE academy is brand new, OBC has a wealth of educational experience.”

Richard O’Connor, Oregon Building Congress, presents one of their two “Educator of the Year” awards to the Michel Taylor, the new Executive Director of ACE academy. Although not shown, Terry Kneisler, Reynolds School District Superintendent, was also named “Educator of the Year” for his work in establishing the ACE Academy charter school.

Fills needs of industry and workers
At the Oregon Building Congress’ annual meeting, held this year at the site of the new ACE academy on October 10, O’Connor told us there are three reasons why this new charter school fills an urgent need.

“Construction is the fasting growing industry in this area In addition to construction workers, engineers and architects are also in short supply.

“Secondly, this education will provide solid, family-wage jobs to graduates. Graduates will have new choices: They can go directly into the construction trades or pursue technical or managerial careers.

“Finally, consider this. East County has the highest poverty rate in the greater Portland area. We think this school can be an engine for economic development.”

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

See what happens when a neighborhood and business association team up to host their first joint neighborhood party …

Raydene Taylor, volunteer with the Montavilla Neighborhood Association, serves up delicious, freshly baked-from-scratch pie, donated to the event by the Bipartisan Café on SE Stark Street in Montavilla.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
One of the fun community activities we do is being the master of ceremonies for outer East Portland Events. The first annual Montavilla International Festival held in September was a truly delightful and colorful event.

The event’s coordinator, Natalie Ullman, an intern with Southeast Uplift, was supported by volunteers from the Montavilla Neighborhood and Montavilla/East Tabor Business Association. Together, they produced a great event at Portland Community College SE Center.

Community groups, and representatives from city and county agencies, provide a wealth of information to attendees.

Young dancers from the Society for Haitian Arts and Culture provide rhythmic entertainment.

Ullman told us there were two ideas behind this event: Building a stronger network among residents, businesses, and cultural centers; and, through dialogue, finding ways the Montavilla Neighborhood Association can better serve the community.

The Montavilla International Festival’s aim was to provide a networking event for residents, churches, businesses, cultural centers, and other organizations; as well as a celebration of the growing cultural diversity of the Montavilla neighborhood.

The class of Master Brown from Kim’s Taekwon-do – offering instruction at the Montavilla Community center for 14 years – demonstrate their skills.

Tateyanna Parente (seated) and Natalia Hougen play and sing Russian, folk, and Gypsy romantic compositions during their lively program.

The hundreds of folks who came to the festivities enjoyed international-themed foods, live music, and information from fifteen organizations.

The Montavilla Community Center provided activities at a kids’ table; and we ourselves were treated to a high-energy martial-arts demonstration.

Dan Bechtold, serving up special “red hots” from Edelweiss Sausage & Deli.

Jared Oaks, Flying Pie Pizzeria in Montavilla, gives pizza-dough-tossing lessons.

Bringing eclectic music that ranges from folk rock to indie soul to jazz-influenced blues is Acoustic Minds, with Jenni and Amanda Price on vocals; Jeremy Serwer on vocals and acoustic/electric guitar; Chris Chard on bass; Rod Nightingale on drums; and Dave Jorgenson on the keyboard.

The community event was funded by a grant from SE Uplift, a non-profit organization that provides support and technical assistance to 20 southeast neighborhoods, to increase public outreach.

Was the event a success? Our guess is yes; they’re already planning for their next International Festival in September, 2008.

Retiring owner of “the” neighborhood market in Montavilla, Errol Carlson, is presented with an “award for service and dedication to the community” – including hosting numerous parades, by Alema McCray, President of the Montavilla/East Tabor Business Association.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

If you believe outer East Portland issues are getting lost in City and County bureaucracy, learn about this opportunity to meet directly with Mayor Tom Potter and Chair Ted Potter to hatch strategies to improve livability east of 82nd Avenue of Roses …

City of Portland Planning Bureau’s Barry Manning, the East Portland Liaison, says the “Action Plan” is an effort improve livability – both long and short term.

Story and photo by David F. Ashton
When it was announced that the City of Portland and Multnomah County were putting together an “East Portland Action Plan and Committee”, we called the coordinator, City of Portland Planning Bureau’s Barry Manning, the East Portland Liaison, to ask about it.

Specifically, we asked Manning, in light of “visionPDX”, and the planning of town halls for transportation and other topics, why we need yet another committee…?

“Here is the chance for members of the outer East Portland community to work with elected officials, and agency staff, on actions that can help shape the future and livability of outer East Portland,” Manning told us.

The committee, Manning went on, will look at both long- and short-term actions, programs, and improvements. “The city of Portland has a small budget allocation to address some short-term actions this year. The community will identify the ones that are most pressing. In the long term, it is an opportunity for the community to air concerns and set priorities.”

Because this committee meets with both City of Portland and Multnomah County officials, Manning added, “This is an opportunity to coordinate programs from various agencies to work together, to benefit neighbors in outer East Portland.”

Multnomah County Chair Ted Wheeler and Portland Mayor Tom Potter say the new process will help improve the livability of outer East Portland by coordinating agency efforts.

Topics open for discussion include:

  • Business Enhancement: Identify strategies for improving the business climate in East Portland, focusing on specific strategies for different areas.
  • Schools, Families, Housing:  Develop a partnership and specific strategies with school districts serving East Portland to address school facilities’ overcrowding.
  • Community Safety: Develop partnerships to intensify the city’s public safety and social services responses.
  • Community Organizing: Develop and fund methods to improve public participation, and to broaden the base of community involvement in East Portland.
  • Transportation Needs: Refine transportation priorities for East Portland, and explore budget proposals necessary to fund them.
  • Land Use Planning: Explore and implement land use code changes to address infill development issues, and lay the groundwork for longer range planning.

While the committee meeting schedule is still being formulated, Manning said it is expected to meet monthly from October 2007 to about May 2008, with subcommittees that may meet more frequently.

Don’t complain! Get involved!
Apply now; they’re looking to hear from potential participants by October 12.

For an application, CLICK HERE. Then, click on the “East Portland Action Plan” link.

“Call me at (503) 823-7965 if you have questions about this effort or the committee or process,” said Manning. “We’re putting together a group that includes State Representative Jeff Merkley. We envision the committee as a mix of community members, elected officials, and agency representatives working together on problem-solving and improvement strategies for East Portland.”

Or, come to the Midland Business Association meeting on October 9 and talk with Barry Manning in person. They meet at 11:45 at PIZZA BARON on SE 122nd Avenue, just south of SE Division Street.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

You see listings for the Ladybug Theater every month in our Community Calendar. See some of the treasures sold in this most unusual yard sale …

Buying pieces of Portland theatrical history, Ladybug Theater garage sale patrons Stacey and Jon Maurer, from the Richmond neighborhood, hold “Uncle Sam” and “Tom Thumb”. Troupe founder, Michele Earley, is also selling them “The Bald Guy” – and Janell Collier, a Ladybug actress for 26 years, holds the show signs.

Story and photo by David F. Ashton
In an effort to clean out the Ladybug Theater warehouse, founder and impresario Michele Earley held a “garage sale” to make room for new theatrical materials in late September.

As customers browsed through old Ladybug Theater costumes, props, set furnishings, and puppets, at the sale in Ladd’s Addition, Earley told us, “The proceeds will benefit our 40-year-old children’s theater troupe.”

You and your young ones can enjoy Ladybug Theater presentations at Sellwood’s SMILE Station. Check our Community Calendar for times and dates.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

How many hippies can you crowd into Sellwood Riverfront Park? Take a look; you’ll see what happened at this year’s location of this annual cannabis festRead the rest of this entry »

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