Thank You Southeast Neighbors!

I hope everyone enjoyed the Southeast Neighbors Picnic and Neighborhood Festival this year. It was by far the best attended (300+) and most supported event since the neighborhood association was recognized by the City of Eugene 25 years ago as a merger of the South Hills, Southeast Firs, Dunn, and Oak Hills Neighborhood Associations.

I loved the diversity of music, the smiles on faces of all ages, the food, seeing friends, collaborating, and above all  – the sense of community from so many of us coming together. This has become a beautiful tradition of summer to fall for me and I look forward to our next one together in 2015.

Thank you to all who attended and especially Emily Fox for coordinating the music and also for playing her signature children’s music, Debbie Hebert for coordinating the raffle and garden sharing table, Len Epstein for coordinating the survey (click here to take it if you haven’t yet – it’s short) and his help with obtaining donations for our raffle prizes this year (we raised $440!) , Steve Chaddick for his excellent logistics, David Saul for publicity and that amazing flyer design, Madronna Holden for rocking it as the emcee, Deborah Noble for her continued support and fabulous hula-hooping, Lealan Swanson for holding the booth down and coordinating food options, William Zwicker for setup and cash management, Noah Chamerlain for sharing the field, anyone I have forgotten to mention, and the many supporting organizations that came out and tabled or provided service to the community with us this year:

  • City of Eugene Recreation Services
  • Parks and Open Spaces
  • Parenting Now!
  • The Bubble Guy
  • Face Painting
  • Yoga West
  • Kickin’ It For Vets – Kickball Tournament
  • Tamarack Pool
  • Support Local Food Rights
  • Lemonade Stand Families
  • Neighborhood Gardeners @ The Sharing Table
  • Edewaard
  • The Traceys
  • Linda Danielson & Kevin Rothaar
  • Eugene Bhangra
  • Late to Dinner
  • Good Samaritan Eugene Village
  • Master Gardeners
  • Brahma Kumaris
  • Adaptive Recreation Services
  • American Red Cross, Oregon Pacific Chapter
  • EWEB
  • City of Eugene Transportation Planning
  • Eugene Police Department
  • South Eugene Community Emergency Response Team
  • Long Tom Watershed Council
  • No Industrial Pisgah
  • West Coast Dog and Cat Rescue
  • Senior And Disabled Services (S&DS)
  • Eugene Gleaners
  • Edward Jones
  • Yoga West Eugene, Lube It USA, Good Samaritan Society, The Glenwood, Laughing Planet at 29th & Willamette, Pet Smart, Eugene True Value Hardware, Pegasus Pizza, Metropol Bakery, Emily Fox, Lorna Flormoe, and Safeway for their donations to the Southeast Neighbors raffle
  • Marty Wilde for Neighbors Who Gave Donations for the Ghaznavi Family: From Marty: “Our efforts came together!  Abdul, Seema, and 5 of their children arrived on time Monday night.  The refugee agency, SOAR, helped us gather them up and take them to the Howard Johnson’s for the night.  We met up in the morning and got the kids to the apartment, while the adults started the mountains of paperwork necessary to get established. Thanks to you all for the donations, Frank for his van, and Kelly for the garage space, I managed to get all of the donations to the new apartment.  It’s a nice little 3 bedroom place in Beaverton, right by the transit center and an easy walk to shopping.  Since they probably won’t be driving soon, convenience is key.  The agency managed to get the basics in place, but your gifts of beds, bedding, kitchen supplies, clothes, and so many other things will make their lives much more pleasant.  When I left, the kids were happily playing and exploring their new things. In terms of future material needs, Ghaznavi will get back to me with anything else.  Chief, I know the kids will be grateful for that TV, and, lacking any local Dari or Pashto language broadcasts, they’ll probably even learn more English!  They have already picked up a bit of the language, and were anxious to practice, when they weren’t laughing at my Dari! One happy story – I was afraid Ghaznavi would have to leave his youngest daughter in Afghanistan.  She’s adopted, and Afghanistan lacks a formal adoption law that the US is willing to accept.  35 years of war will do that.  I should say that it lacked a formal adoption law, since Ghaznavi was able to use the skills he acquired working for USAID to successfully get one passed by the legislature there.  It’s soon to be published.  When it is, his youngest will be able to join him.  For now, she’s staying with his oldest daughter (who is married and remaining in Kabul). I’m hopeful that a guy with that kind of talent will easily find a job here.  Unfortunately, Portland isn’t a hotbed of economic activity for people with expertise in governance.  He has a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Washington.  I pointed him in the direction of Mercy Corps, since they’re local do relief work in Afghanistan.  Any other local connections or suggestions would be most welcome.  Feel free to reply directly to him at  He’s still working on a US phone. Sincerely, Marty Wilde

Our next event will be the Neighborhood Meeting and Fall Dessert Potluck in November. Sign up for our neighborhood newsletter to receive information about it in the coming weeks.

Thank you for participating in our community.

Heather Sielicki
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Southeast Neighbors
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