Here’s the draft agenda for the January 20th, 2021 CNA LUTC Meeting.
Web: https://meet.google.com/ocg-wgut-iki | Phone: 316-512-3077 PIN: 417604919#
Here’s the draft agenda for the January 20th, 2021 CNA LUTC Meeting.
Web: https://meet.google.com/ocg-wgut-iki | Phone: 316-512-3077 PIN: 417604919#
The Concordia Neighborhood Association (CNA) Board of Directors has three new members, joining three re-elected directors and six at mid-term.
Leading the board for a one-year term beginning in January is Peter Keller as chair. John Fitzgerald and Brittany van der Salm were elected to two-year terms. Re-elected to two-year terms were Amelie Marian and Sonia Fornoni.
The two-year Southwest 2 position was not filled during the election, and plans call for the CNA board to appoint a Concordian to fill it at the Jan. 6 meeting. The only criteria is that you are 14 years or older and that you live, work or own property between 22nd and 33rd avenues and between Killingsworth Street and Alameda.
If you’re interested, contact Chair@ ConcordiaPDX.org.
By Astrid Furstner | CNA Chair
‘Tis the season! Can you believe we made it to the end of the year? Seeing as this is my last Chair’s Corner, I would like to thank and acknowledge those who have made a contribution this year.
The 2020 board and committee members: Chris Baker, Robert Bowles, Matt Boyd, Kathy Crabtree, Donn Dennis, Joel Dippold, Steve Elder, Sonia Fornoni, Tamara Anne Fowler, Tami Fung, Will Goubert, Ike Harris, Lloyd Kimeldorf, Gina Levine, Amelie Marian, John McSherry, Vanessa Miali, Ali Novak, Truls Neal, Heather Pashley, Gordon Riggs, Marsha Sandman, Erik Van Hagen, Nancy Varekamp, Karen Wells, Carrie Wenninger, Dan Werle, Tara Williams and Garlynn Woodsong.
Our neighbors and volunteers who have attended meetings, sent emails, called or offered words of advice: Miguel Acuna, Mary Barrett, Tanya Bushnell, Bette & Wayne Bauer, Sigrid Casey, Allison Cassing, Belinda Clark, Isabel Clop, Keith Daellenbach, Gabrielle Drinard, Ben Earle, Kimasue Garrison, Jeff Geisler, Ann Griffin, Marilee Hankins, Molly Hanlon, Nathan Hanzelka, Elizabeth Hildebrand, Jeff Hurt, Bernadette Janet, Christina Lane, Jordana Leeb, Michael Morrow, Michael Nagy, Greg RochPlease remain involved ford, Shawn Seebach, Thea Sanchez, Pat Sheans, Jack Slocum, Madeline Small, David Sussman, Elizabeth Swanson, Benjamin Taylor, Addie Virta and Erwin Washington.
I’m sure I have missed a few and to those I apologize.
Isn’t this amazing? So many neighbors have cared about Concordia and have reached out to participate at some level. At our November annual meeting, we had 34 people in attendance – that is impressive!
I hope you all keep up the participation and continue to be involved.
At our November meeting, we held elections and I am pleased to announce that Peter Keller was voted as our 2021 chair. See Page 4 for the other new board members.
Congratulations! I am certain that Peter’s enthusiasm for the position and care for Concordia will be evident in the meetings.
While I will not be the chair, I will still be your neighbor. I hope to say hello to you while out for a walk. My hope is that you continue to reach out to your neighbors – old and new.
Keep looking out for one another. Be kind and understanding. Together we build community. Together we are strong. Together we are Concordia.
I am thankful for my time of service, but more important, I am blessed to be among such great neighbors!
Many blessings to all.
Astrid Furstner is a mother, a wife, an immigrant, a local artist and an artisan. She lives with her luthier husband, Brent, and her artist-in-the-making daughter, Luciana. Together, they call Concordia their home.
By Karen Wells | CNA Media Team
While on a neighborhood bike ride, I noticed a brightlycolored mural at the corner of 15th Avenue at Sumner Street. Bold flowers bloomed on a sun-bright yellow background.
A caption, “Empathy is not Allyship” runs along the border. Names of slain African Americans encircle three of the six vibrant blossoms.
The artist – find him at Instagram. com/jamjamart – chose six blossoms as images of peace and hope. Imagine they represent the people: Asian, Black, Latinix, Native, white and the ancestors.
Witnessing the names, caption and visual intensity of the mural sparks the question regarding the current social justice movements: “Empathy is not enough?”
A child as young as 2 shows empathy toward another child who is crying. They try to soothe by offering a toy or hugging. This feeling of empathy pushes them into action to aid someone outside of their immediate world.
Feeling empathy can be a starting point for social justice engagement and change.
I followed up by contacting the muralist and spoke with several neighbors, including the homeowner who commissioned the mural. Several themes surfaced.
At the top of the list: adults are more complicated than 2 year olds. We want concrete reasons why we should feel empathy toward others, especially those who are outside our social circles.
Next, there is concern: is it OK to feel empathy? Then follows self-doubt as to how to proceed, and inaction.
This introspection can feel bothersome — easier to do nothing or simply become absorbed in feeling empathetic. Use empathy to embrace being an active ally.
Take a moment to suspend the notion that you know all there is to know about being an ally. Take a moment to breathe this in. Let it wash over you.
You can always start tomorrow, yet starting today supports neighbors who are trying to live their best lives today.
Think about this quote from Angela Davis, PhD. “I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.”
Empathy is not enough? Thanks for asking.
Editor’s note: Karen has several resources to offer to further explore this theme. Check Facebook.com/groups/ ConcordiaPDX, where she’ll post them in mid-December.
CNA respects the views and beliefs of all cultures and faiths. The views expressed by this writer do not necessarily reflect the views of CNA.
Karen Wells is a retired early childhood communit y educator, health and safety trainer.
By Garlynn Woodsong | CNA Board Member, SW1, CNA LUTC Chair
“Our house is on fire; we should act like it.” Those are the words of Greta Thunberg. She’s the Swedish school-age climate activist known for protesting the inaction and insufficient response of governments to the threat of climate change. And she’s referring to the urgency to act on climate change immediately.
In Concordia, we’re certainly no strangers to the ill effects of climate change. Smoke from last summer’s wildfires caused us to shelter in place for two weeks. There is wide scientific consensus the wildfire season was worsened by global warming.
But if our house and our forests are metaphorically and literally on fire, what can we do about it?
One thing we can do is embrace urbanism. In this sense, urbanism describes the interaction between inhabitants of urban areas (that’s us) and their built environment (that’s the buildings and transportation systems that surround us).
The author Peter Calthorpe, in his book “Urbanism in the Age of Climate Change,” finds the average American household today travels around 24,000 miles each year by car. The UrbanFootprint software that Peter and I codeveloped shows the average Concordia neighborhood household only drives 10,985 miles per year, or 62% less than the average American household.
That means that the average household here is:
By the way, within the neighborhood, residents of the East district – between 33rd and 42nd avenues – drive the most each year, at 5,356 miles per person per year. Northwest district residents – west of 33rd Avenue and north of Killingsworth Street – drive 4,588 miles Southwest district residents drive the least, at 4,115 miles per year per person.
This all makes intuitive sense, as the Southwest district straddles Alberta Street, with all of its walkable destinations. The East district includes fewer sidewalks or retail destinations, and the Northwest district is just slightly farther away from everything.
These internal differences within the neighborhood are slight, however, compared to the 11,000 miles driven by the average American person each year.
Embracing urbanism means leaning into our low-carbon lifestyle. That’s made easy by the inherent high-quality urbanism of our neighborhood. By default, we’re encouraged to walk, ride bicycles, take transit and drive short trips for our most regular journeys.
For those of us with the means and the desire to do more, we can always do better. We can fuel switch our cars. And we can add solar panels to our roofs for space and water heating to move away from fossil fuels in our homes.
We can also welcome new neighbors to our neighborhood, confident every new resident of Concordia is somebody who is saying “yes” to the low-carbon urbanism that we already enjoy.
Garlynn Woodsong lives on 29th Avenue, serves on the CNA board and is an avid bicyclist. He also is a dad who is passionate about the city his son will inherit. He is the planning + development partner with Cascadia Partners LLC, a local urban planning firm. Contact him at LandUse@ConcordiaPDX.org.
By Nancy Varekamp | CNews Editor
Do you want to help make the holidays a bit brighter for some of the Concordians hit hardest by pandemic quarantining?
Sojourn Church is calling for letters, cards and art to deliver to the 39 longterm care residents at Fernhill Estates.
Crystal Endreola is organizing the effort of Sojourn Church members – and all Concordians – to provide her with items to distribute later this month at the facility.
“Everyone’s feeling isolated during the pandemic,” she explained. “I think that’s heightened during the holidays.” It not only affects people like the Fernhill Estates residents, but people who enjoy volunteering.
“I think everyone is dying to do something. I know I’m eager for an opportunity like this.”
Crystal lives near the care facility that’s two blocks southwest of the park. Last December, she planned a party for the residents with others in a Facebook group of local parents. “We took our kids, played music, had food — all the wonderful things we can’t do this year.”
She hopes there will be enough items contributed to provide more than one to each resident and even the 40 employees who care for them – physically, medically and emotionally. Contact Crystal at Crystal@SojournPDX.org or 818.564.7311 for details and/or to contribute items.
“Fernhill Estates said we can contribute gifts for the residents too,” Crystal reported. Those might include calendars, gloves, scarves, lap blankets and other items to cheer residents during the continuing quarantine.
People of all ages and locations are welcome to contribute their efforts to the project. Crystal said it’s an especially good activity for budding young artists like her own 2 year old.
“I think it teaches our children there’s a world beyond ourselves and expands their minds to consider other people’s situations.
Nancy Varekamp is semiretired from her career in journalism, public relations and – her favorite work engagement – writing and editing targeted newsletters.
By Steve Elder and Nancy Varekamp | CNA Media Team
This neighborhood picked up its moniker from the school that opened its doors here in 1905. Although the institution matured from parochial school to university status, the name Concordia persisted.
Now the site in northwest Concordia neighborhood is vacant. Should neighborhood association retain its name?
That was the question posed to more than 30 participants in November’s Concordia Neighborhood Association annual meeting. Concordian Dan Werle offered a presentation outlining what factors should be considered.
Why should the name change? What people and businesses might be impacted? Would it be helpful, problematic or not make a difference? What would the new name be?
Former neighborhood names have included Irvington Park, Town of Creighton, Heidelberg Addition and Foxchase Addition.
“My intent isn’t to slam the [Lutheran] church or the university,” Dan explained “It’s a pivotal time in our world, nation, city and neighborhood,” he added, pointing to the Movement For Black Lives; online, verbal and physical attacks and threats toward women; and more racial, social and economic challenges.
“Names matter. Buildings, streets and neighborhoods reflect our values, and they improve our sense of history and our relationship with community,” he said. “It’s an opportunity to honor an individual who has – or people who have – lived in the neighborhood or contributed to the neighborhood.”
It could pay tribute to a marginalized or under-represented individual or group, increase community involvement and/or inspire and reflect inclusiveness.
Considering the possibility of a name change was greeted with interest at the meeting.
One participant commented, “Your initial thought about changing the name is ‘no,’ but, when you get the context, it softens things a lot.”
“I really appreciate the thought,” reported another. “Makes sense to me to cut the tie with Concordia University and come up with a name that reflects our values.
“Love the idea to honoring a BIPOC who made an influence,” she added. “An idea is looking into what the Indigenous folks called this place in the past.”
Another offered his opinion on a new name. “I’d vote for an Indigenous person,” he said. “They’re even ahead of my own race – African American – in being persecuted.”
Chair Astrid Furstner appointed Dan to chair an ad hoc committee to engage in research and community involvement.
Other committee members are: Mary Barrett, Ike Harris, John McSherry, Elaine Oliver, Brittany Taylor and Addie Virta.
View the PowerPoint presentation here, To contact the committee, email Chair@ConcordiaPDX.org.
By Maquette Reeverts | Alberta Art Works
Take the power of art and add community. Art in public spaces creates culture by building character and improves the quality of life.
Art doesn’t have to be a luxury or something in a gallery or museum. Art can happen in your yard. You have an opportunity to improve the quality of place while engaging your brain in something creative.
It is going to be a long winter, so why not use that extra indoor time creating something for everyone to enjoy? Think yard art, little libraries and other ways to enhance your lawn for the good of all.
Engage your neighbors with something that makes them smile, a little surprise along their evening stroll.
Not a painter? Stencils are a great way to enliven a garden wall or concrete steps. Make a stencil using thin cardboard or buy one from a craft store. Hire an artist, or paint a mural yourself on that tired wood fence.
How about a street mural? Start planning this winter by visiting PortlandOregon.gov/transportation/67083, then putting it into action come spring.
Interactive art could be a chalkboard, little libraries or shelves for free piles. Assemblages are works of art that use found objects. Look in your attic, garage and bike shed to find interesting parts to make a yard sculpture.
Those born with green thumbs could start a “kids cut-your-own flower bed” or how about inviting a fairy or gnome into your garden by building them a house or an entry at the base of a tree?
Do it for yourself and do it for your neighbors. Create a smile for everyone to enjoy. By simply participating in a creative way, you can help bring a little humanity to our everyday and improve our community’s well-being.
Editor’s note: After you’ve created and placed your community art, send a photo and its location to CNews for Concordia Curiosities. Or post it on Facebook.com/ groups/ConcordiaPDX.
CNA respects the views and beliefs of all Concordians, and their cultures and faiths. The views expressed by this writer do not necessarily reflect the views of CNA.
Michel Reeverts, aka Maquette, holds a master of arts degree in art education, serves Alberta Art Works as director and Alberta Street Gallery as a board member. She is also a practicing artist. Contact her at Maquette@AlbertaArtWorks.org
By Tamara Anne Fowler | CNA Media Team
The drive for peaches has been a long one. Even spanning oceans.
In 2017, Driving for Peaches (DFP) band members Pete Harrington, guitar, came from the UK and Alex Whitcher, guitar, arrived from New Zealand.
Ditte Kuipers, vocals, had hit the Portland soil a few years prior. Ian Kelley, drummer, is originally from California and works at Extracto. Chris Boitz, bass, grew up in Oregon and has spent most of his life in Portland.
“DFP’s music is inspired largely by escape, road trips and relationships and the freedom of driving wherever you want… the journey. The peach is the often unattainable thing you are striving to reach at the end, whether it is the perfect destination or something connected to a loved one or relationship,” Pete said.
DFP has written and rehearsed all of the group’s first songs during COVID-19 lockdown.
“The Pacific Northwest is relatively new to most of us in the band, so we are inspired a lot by the energy, landscape and people of this place. Our music is steeped in the vibes of this beautiful part of the world,” Alex revealed.
“Our first releases channel the energy of different parts of the state – salt: Oregon coast, head straight: Willamette National Forest, blisters: high desert,” he added.
Most of the writing has taken place at Pete’s home, where they also recorded their first three tracks. It’s the only option during lockdown.
“We now practice with the full band at Cerimon House, where they have been amazing. Based on the COVID-19 restrictions and the fact they aren’t able to hold formal events, they were willing to let us use the space for our practices,” Alex explained.
It’s anybody’s guess when playing regular shows will be a reality. As such, DFP members are focused on what they can control – writing and recording music and creating a steady cadence of releases that people can get behind.
Internet presence and building DFP’s following without being able to play live much is important to the band members.
They invite people to follow them on:
Tamara Anne Fowler is Edit Kitten, a writer with 20-plus years of experience offering a sof ter, gentler approach to editing and coaching. Her personal editors – Armani, Max Factor and Spicey’D – are also her cats. Visit her at EditKitten.com or contact her at Tamara@EditKitten.com.
By Sharon Kelly | CNA Media Team
Near Fernhill Park, at the border of Cully and Concordia neighborhoods, Portland’s mutual aid movement blossoms.
A donated refrigerator, an old cabinet and an outlet in a lamp post have been transformed into an ultra-local, 24-hour, no-questions-asked, neighborhood food pantry for anybody in need of the ingredients for a meal.
“We were looking for ways to contribute in a time when there were a lot of different fronts that needed people to fight for climate justice, social justice, racial justice, and especially culminating with the impacts of the coronavirus,” said Ruth Rodgers.
The Cully resident and PDX Free Fridge host added, “We knew we weren’t people who had a lot of money to contribute or time to volunteer. So, when we saw on Instagram that PDX Free Fridge was looking for hosts and volunteers, we jumped on it.”
Ruth and her husband Sean were busy adapting their northeast Portland business, a small independent gym, to the ever-changing climate of COVID-19.
They were also supporting their two children with distance-learning at home, but their concern for their community was growing.
PDX Free Fridge organizers had seen free community fridges working in New York City and many other major cities since the pandemic hit. They thought it could work here too.
Their call for support was met with a resounding response from Portlanders like Ruth, and now a network of 15-plus mini-food pantries spread from Beaverton to Troutdale. Each is hosted and maintained by local volunteers.
Backyard chicken eggs, cheeses, milk, bags of freshly harvested basil, salad greens, frozen organic chicken, individually-packed prepared meals, canned goods, masks, hand-sanitizer and other essentials. Those are just some examples of what you might find in the Simpson Court free fridge on any given day.
Organizers network with local farmers, grocery workers and food bank groups for donations of healthy, fresh food items. Volunteers visit the fridges every day or two to clean, sanitize, restock and snap pictures to post on Instagram. Those are tagged @pdxfreefridge to let followers know what’s in each fridge that day.
“It creates a sense of solidarity every time somebody opens the fridge and it’s stocked,” Ruth said. “When someone comes to drop something off, they feel that they can be part of something that’s bigger than themselves.
“We get a front row seat to mutual aid and how beautiful it is.”
Sharon Kelly uses her outreach and coordination skills to support trees, farmers, small businesses, and engage people to create more healthy, equitable, sustainable communities. She’s best known locally as market manager for Cully and Woodlawn farmers markets and as web manager for Trees for Life Oregon. Contact her at NaturalFarmerPDX@gmail.com.