Stories for June 2014

Wednesday, June 25

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Revisiting Alberta

Proposed new look at issues comes with racial lens

Two longtime Portland educators are looking to revive a 1992 student-led study of the economy of Alberta Street, for the new millennium.

Tuesday, June 24

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Black Girl in Suburbia

Filmmaker explores racial ignorance and alienation of suburbia

“Black Girl in Suburbia” is a documentary exploring the tales of women of African descent, some still in school, some long past graduation, who were primarily raised and educated in mostly white communities.

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Portland Musician Remembered

Mel Solomon

Long time Portland resident and blues musician Mel Solomon, formerly of “Hank Ballard's Midnighters”, died Monday, June 23 after living with diabetes for many years, according to family and friends.

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Emotional Journey

Film ‘Ida’ keeps its focus on a family’s history

Our 'Opinonated Judge' reviews the film 'Ida'

Friday, June 20

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Summer Kids in the Park

Gresham plans special activities at three parks

Gresham is putting a hop and a skip into summertime with Summer Kids in the Park, an eight-week Gresham parks recreation and free lunch program for all youth 18 or younger.

Wednesday, June 18

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Move Over for Luxury

Trend sees older housing stock leveled for higher-cost living

North and northeast Portland have experienced a number of changes in the past few years adding to the gentrification of local neighborhoods. It’s easy to see the increased density, the changing neighborhood demographics, and, perhaps most apparent for the average resident, rising housing costs.

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Sweet History

Couple broke racial barriers in business

You can’t go there now, but the sweet treats of Milwaukie Pastry Kitchen are once again an Oregon hot spot. Co-owned by Hurtis Mixon Hadley Sr. and his wife Dorothy Bishop Hadley, the historical bakery is currently the subject of an exhibit at the Oregon Historical Society, downtown.

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Issues of Fairness, Justice, and God-given Dignity

Defending the Voting Rights Act

Rev. Chuck Currie details the threats to Justice of today

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A New Meaning and Tone for Memorial Day

Make it a day to celebrate peace

PSU Student and Iraq War veteran Eric Chitoubol says Memorial is a day to reflect on individual and familial happiness

Wednesday, June 11

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Saving Lives

Clinic expands services to fight health inequities

The North by Northeast Community Health Center just might be one of the best-kept secrets in north and northeast Portland. And they say it’s time for that to change. For over seven years the health center served low-income neighborhood adults with no health insurance, focusing on preventing the deadly consequences of high blood pressure, asthma and diabetes.

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Activate Summer!

Opportunities to keep youth engaged

Summer is upon us Portland! How do we keep the young people engaged? The Portland Observer found some great opportunities to help answer that exact question.

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New Fields and Tracks

Jefferson next in line for Great Fields project

A 10-year community-wide effort to provide every Portland high school with a new track and a synthetic turf field took a big step toward conclusion Friday when student athletes, Superintendent Carole Smith, NIKE and community leaders broke ground on the first of four new fields and tracks that will be completed this summer.

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Fitting College In

Student speaker no longer has to put her dreams on hold

After graduating from Lincoln High School, Yesenia Herrera wasn't sure how college fit into her life. Now, she can't imagine it not fitting in. The 20-year-old St. Johns resident was named the student speaker for the Portland Community College’s commencement ceremony on Friday, June 13, at Memorial Coliseum. She was also recently awarded the Community College President’s Award at Washington State University-Vancouver.

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In Loving Memory

James C. Crolley

A memorial service for James C. Crolley will be held on Saturday, June 14, at 1 p.m. at Life Change Christian Center, 3635 N. Williams Ave.

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Kent Ford Tribute on July 4

The All African People’s Revolutionary Party invites the community to its third annual “Fourth of the Lie” program at Peninsula Park in north Portland on July 4 starting at 3 p.m. This year’s theme is a tribute to Kent Ford, the founder of the Portland Black Panther Party chapter. Conscious youth will perform with hip-hop contributions with other musical celebrations.

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Maya Angelou was a prophet of our times

Rev. M. Linda Jaramillo reflects on the life of Maya Angelo. "She knew what it meant to be a person of dignity, which she claimed was the very basis for being a representative of the human race."

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Dr. Maya Angelou: I Rise, We Rise, She Rises

Continuing a legacy of love and vision

Marc H. Morial reflects on the legacy of the recently late poet, author, activist Maya Angelou.

Tuesday, June 10

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Terror at Reynolds

Student dies in high school shooting

A 15-year-old gunman who killed a student at Reynolds High School had an assault rifle, handgun and several magazines of ammunition hidden in a guitar case and duffel bag when he rode a school bus to the campus, police said Wednesday. Details continue to emerge.

Thursday, June 5

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Teams Collide at Joyce Washington Classic

The Portland Observer held its 14th annual Joyce Washington Classic’ basketball tournament this past Saturday, and as-per-usual the talent showed up. Six teams composed of some of the brightest players from Portland and across the state showed up to the court at Self Enhancement, Inc. and played in what were all close games.

Wednesday, June 4

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Please, No Labels

Musical couple explores ‘norms’ with debut EP

"Etheral" hip hop duo 7hirdwav3 explores the bounds of music, society, and the 'norms' with their debut EP 'Thirdwave'.

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Drug Courts Turn 15

Advocates praise corrections programs

For 15 years now, Clark County has operated seven Drug Courts under the heading of Therapeutic Specialty Courts. The accomplishments of the courts were recently celebrated by public officials, advocates, graduates and the public at large during a special ceremony at Esther Short Park in Vancouver.

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Finding Vivian Maier

Mindful curiosity to an odd and ordinary life

Our 'Opinionated Judge' Darleen Ortega critiques the film "Finding Vivian Maier''--that probes mysteries about the human experience with a vigorous curiosity that may be deemed obsessive.

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New Grocer Bids for MLK Lot

PDC updates plans at open meeting

Plans by the Portland Development Commission to develop a long-vacant lot on Martin Luther King Boulevard and Alberta Street are moving forward with many of the same players involved before a community protest caused grocer Trader Joes to pull out of the bidding. PDC Executive Director Patrick Quinton announced at an open community meeting at the adjacent Curious Comedy club last Wednesday evening that California developer Majestic Realty Co. and local minority contractor Colas Construction would be staying on board as participants in the venture.

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Getting at the Root of the Problems at MLC

We applaud the superintendant for her response

Some local African American leaders commend Portland Public School superintendent Carole Smith for confronting recently highlighted racial inequities at Metropolitan Learning Center where she concluded complaints from the mostly white parent-body against the Black principal of the school were in part racially motivated.