More roses adorn 82nd Avenue

Find out why this streetside rose garden was planted – and, where you can go to see it …

Daniel Cogan, General Manager of Montavilla’s Burgerville, welcomes everyone to the rose planting ceremony.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
While the effort to identify 82nd Avenue as the “Avenue of Roses” has waned since it began in 2005, there appears renewed support, evidenced by a rose bush planting ceremony that took place on July 7.

  • See an official rose planting we covered in April, 2006: CLICK HERE.
  • Look at an effort to help reduce crime along the avenue in June, 2006: CLICK HERE.

As officials gathered, Daniel Cogan, General Manager of the Burgerville restaurant at NE 82nd Avenue of Roses and NE Glisan Street, said that he runs Store #4. “We’ve just planted a rose garden of 15 rosebushes along NE 82nd Avenue of Roses. Today, we’re having a special ceremony by the Portland Rose Society and the Royal Rosarians to dedicate a special rose.”

As a member of the 82nd Avenue of Roses Business Association, Cogan said he’d been approached by the Rose Society’s Eileen Curtis, who said the society would love to see more roses along the thoroughfare.

“I pointed out that we had a pretty nice strip along the sidewalk along 82nd Avenue,” Cogan told us, “And perhaps by planting roses, we’d encourage others along the avenue to do the same – and really spruce up our street. We believe 82nd Avenue is a great corridor for business, and it would be wonderful for folks here to be able to look over, and see beautiful roses.”

These newly-planted rose bushes – the variety is called “Walking on Sunshine” – symbolize a resurgence for recognizing 82nd Avenue as the “Avenue of Roses”, businesspeople say.

Hai Nguyen, President of the Business Association, joined us, and agreed. “The rose is our symbol, and bringing more roses to East Portland increases our visibility here.”

In what he called its “glory days”, Nguyen pointed out that the avenue had been considered a “destination” for shoppers and those looking for entertainment and restaurants. “We’re hoping to persuade people to come back to visit, shop, go to restaurants, and enjoy our community.”

As business manager of Columbia Medical Clinic, Nguyen pointed out that both their old and new buildings were located several blocks south, along the avenue. “We could have chosen to build our new clinic anywhere in the city. But we feel that there’s a lot of potential here; we want to reinvest in the community. Fortunately, the community has embraced us, and we’ve grown at a good rate because of the community. We believe in East Portland. It’s nice to see that other people believe in it also.”

Royal Rosarians Prime Minister Ray Hanson, tells about the rose planting ceremony.

Members of the Royal Rosarians – citizens and leaders of Portland’s mythical realm of Rosaria, and ambassadors for the City – took over the program.

Royal Scribe Katie Bagley said that, since 1912 the Royal Rosarians have proclaimed the rose to be the “queen of flowers” and Portland to be its capital.

Royal Gardener John Perkins proclaimed that day’s gathering was to “pay respect to the worthy individual, Dan Cogan.”

Dan Cogan and Rosarian Royal Gardener John Perkins plant a rosebush called “Gold Medal”.

After a “royal watering” and benediction by Gayle Whitehurst, the ceremony concluded with the familiar sentiment, “For you, a rose in Portland grows.”

While the ceremony is over, these roses continue to beautify 82nd Avenue of the Roses.

© 2011 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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