On a warm August evening, over 80 people turned out in the pleasant shade of Marshall Park, for the annual National Night Out event. National Night Out is celebrated in the US and Canada every year on the first Tuesday of August. Parties focus on preventing crime and drug activity by getting to know the people on your block and in your neighborhood.
It was great to see so many neighbors enjoying themselves. Two police officers stopped by for a social call, and one of them had to spring into action to stop a runaway stroller! Fortunately, the very young occupant was not cited for "reckless strolling". And there were many dogs too --- hot dogs, veggie dogs, and happy four legged dogs. Accompanied by chips, fruit, and veggie sticks. All washed down with soda pop, and finished off with ice cream. It was a splendid little feast.
The event and the picnic was provided free of charge thanks to many donations. So a BIG THANK YOU goes out to the brilliant donors -- SAFEWAY, CANTEEN VENDING SERVICES, OHANA PARTY RENTALS, ICE CREAM EXPRESS, PORTLAND PARKS, and SWNI.
And we must recognize the volunteers who did all the leg work - the planning, the shopping, the cooking, the lifting and the hauling. And for managing to roll the round tables down the slope without any ending up in the creek! And to Betsy who entertained us with her fiddle, and even allowed some of the children to try it themselves. Thank you one and all.
Also there was a very nice display showing ideas for new play structures in the park. Thanks to Paige Lehmann and Andy Moser for their work on the display. Amy Steingrebe (MPNA representative to SWNI Parks), and John DeLance (Chair of Friends of Marshall Park), gave a presentation on the playground status and plans for moving forward. The fundraising is just beginning, and their invitation for contributions was very successful: over $3,000 was raised this one night! It's a tremendous start to the fundraising. If you missed the chance to donate this time, you can still do so -- just go to the SWNI office in the Multnomah Arts Center and write a check to "SWNI", and in the notes write "Marshall Park Playground". Donations are tax deductible.
Lost and Found --- There were several babies present, and one left behind a pretty little quilt. If your baby has lost their quilt, let me know and we'll arrange for you to get it back. You'd better describe it, because who knows how many lost quilts there are out there! And please inform Miss Bo Peep that we did not find her sheep!