This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 21, 2008 12:59 PM. The previous post in this blog was Why the $1 coin will be a big hit in the Rose City. The next post in this blog is Text Message of the Year, So Far. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Thursday, August 21, 2008

More on the Lents Park scam

An alert reader notes that the impending surrender of Lents Park to a minor league baseball stadium could negatively affect the Lents Little League, which is being pushed off its current field for an apartment development, courtesy of the Portland Development Commission, and was promised that it could move its operation to Lents Park.

Comments (11)

If you look at the proposed sighting of the stadium, you'll see that there are little league fields around it. In fact, this is a great opportunity for youth teams in the area. They could host Babe Ruth games, tournaments, high school games etc at the Beavers minor league stadium.

Paulson has donated money to little leagues in the area through his Timbers/Beavers Foundation. I don't think he's going to squeeze little kids out of an opportunity to play ball.

I heard it was going to cost the city $1 million just to relocate little league baseball to lents park. I can't see a successful relocation of the Bevos for as little as the proposed $35 million. Most major league parks go for 10 to 20 times this amount. Pretty high chances the Bevos are toast if they are relocated to lents in a scaled down version of a typical triple A park.

All of the upgraded little league fields will be left intact and the little league will probably get to have an office in the new stadium offices. Add all the opportunities for the little league and Beavers to partner on events and it actually ends up being a situation that most little league organizations would envy.

What I have heard so far is that Lents Little League is pretty excited about the prospects.

The two soccer fields will also be left as is. The only obvious displacement would be of the pee-wee football teams that use the far northeast corner of the park. And, that could be compensated for by relocating the goal posts to one of the soccer fields in the center of the park. There are also the adult leagues that use Walker Stadium...and hopefully they can continue to use the new stadium with some creative scheduling. And, the batters won't have to stare at the sun going down anymore.

I'm not writing from the standpoint of a supporting the stadium no matter what. And, I am concerned about the tree canopy and the effect of creating parking in and around the park. But, I think if we're going to point out problems, they need to be legitimate. The use of the sports fields outside of the footprint of the stadium really isn't one of the issues.

once again...
If "the Don" is involved it is a total scam!

"The use of the sports fields outside of the footprint of the stadium really isn't one of the issues."

I disagree with this assertion. The north eastern field is used for both soccer and football pretty much every day in the fall sports season for both practice and competition. There is also open space in the northern portion of the park (which isn't an official field) that I regularly used for soccer drills, etc. with my younger kids that would get eaten up by seats and parking with new stadium. The assertion that the football kids can somehow just go on over to the south part of the park and share the soccer field is bogus because it's already maxed out by the soccer people every day after school and on the weekends. People who actually use the park know about this stuff and assertions to the contrary are wrong.

Free music on the grass -- another activity that would be crushed by the stadium footprint. Dare all you stadium proposal advocates to find your way from Blue Hour to Lents park, leave the Bruno Magli's in the car, and come to this.

From concert promo material:

Lents Folk Festival,
Lents Park,
SE 92nd Ave. and Holgate,
Free Admission,
Sunday Aug. 24th @ 2 pm,
Misty River,
Anne Weiss and friends,
Chico Schwall and Dick Weissman,

The Lents Neighborhood Association and Portland FolkMusic Society present a series of free concerts at one of Portland’s most beautiful parks. On four Sunday afternoons, the music of the finest acoustic performers will be heard for free in this family-oriented setting. There is ample parking and lots of room for picnics and family recreation.
Misty River (http://www.mistyriverband.com) is a Northwest favorite, whose vocal harmonies and instrumental prowess have brought praise form many corners. This quartet of women, base their music in Bluegrass but also romp through Celtic and acoustic Country with a nod toward European traditional music as well. “When OREGON ART BEAT broadcast a segment on MISTY RIVER, the response was amazing. When these four women weave their lovely harmonies, it is spine tingling.” (Jeff Douglas, OPB)

Anne Weiss (http://www.anneweiss.com/index.php) has just announced her Irish tour in the fall, in support of her new CD titled Concrete World and the Lover's Dream. Combining contemporary folk, blues, acoustic funk, gospel music, and smatterings of classical phrasing and Latin rhythms, Anne is known for her enormous bluesy voice, great guitar chops, and striking stage presence.

Dick Weissman (http://www.dickweissman.com/index.html) is a folk veteran, composer and author. His early work on banjo was heard with John Phillips and Scott McKenzie in the folk trio, Journeymen. He has played all over the world and just released his sixth CD, Four Directions. Weissman has written over fifty banjo instructional books and will bring his special Americana instrumentals with the help of Chico Schwall. Schwall plays a variety of instruments and is a songwriter as well. “His music is simple without being simplistic, an endearingly honest and listenable blend of traditional folk, old-time, country, and a more contemporary singer/songwriter sound.” (Victory Music, Seattle)

Lents Park is named after Oliver Perry Lent, a stonemason who came to Oregon in the 1850s to farm a 190-acre land claim. The area became the center of a growing farm community. George P. Lent, the eldest son of Oliver Lent, platted the town of Lents in 1892. In 1912, the Lents community was annexed from Multnomah County and incorporated into the City of Portland.
There will be three more great concerts to follow in September.
For More Information please contact:
Dewey Akers @ (503) 789-1611

FYI: I live 1 1/2 blocks from the park and I use it daily. I am very aware of all of the activities that occur at the park.

While you're up, why don't you tell us where you work? And what financial interest you have in this deal.


My place of employment / vocation doesn't even come close to causing a conflict of interest or potential conflict of interest,

Financially, it all hinges on property value of my residence, which is a huge gamble where this project is concerned. It could definitely go either way, and honestly, the thought makes me a little queasy. But, that doesn't stop me from stepping back and taking all of the information given to me. I want to make an informed decision about whether or not I support the stadium, as a property owner. I definitely owe it to the community to think about the whole community when I think about it in terms of economic and community development.

Neighborhood parks should be immune from attack by the b.s. that passes for "economic development" (developer, architect, and Hoffman Construction welfare programs) in Portland. The people who founded this wonderful city are rolling in their Lone Fir graves.

If there weren't already a dilapidated stadium on the site, I might agree with you. But, since the majority of the footprint is a poorly sited (faces the wrong direction) field in need of major upgrades (accessible bathrooms, new bleachers etc) I'm leaning toward feeling this would be a win-win situation.

In this case, the park would be getting an upgrade and a cultural activity would be given a permanent home in the community. AAA baseball game tickets aren't egregiously expensive, in fact they can be less than movie tickets at the Century 16 at Eastport Plaza. Plus, we could use the stadium for other events on non-game days and in the off season.

As far as economic development is concerned, the small businesses and potential small businesses in the community would probably appreciate being able to count on a few more customers. That's not park property...

Clicky Web Analytics