Saturday, March 15, 2008

Arbor Day Weekend Fundraiser

Want to rescue trees? Sing the Blues!

First 'Save the Trees' Event to Occur on Arbor Day Weekend (4/26-27)

Arbor Day is a holiday in which individuals and groups are encouraged to plant and care for trees. But that day has come to have special relevance for the residents of the Bridgeton Neighborhood, on the bank of the Columbia River. For nearly a year, the Bridgeton Neighborhood Association and a large number of concerned citizens have opposed plans by the local drainage district to cut down most of the trees along the levee that defines their neighborhood. Three award-winning Blues Bands are helping to alleviate some of the costs associated with this effort to Save the Levee, Save the Trees.

What: Arbor Day Weekend to SAVE THE TREES

A dance party fundraising event featuring Live Music, Belly Dancing, Silent Auction, and more

Who: Ellen Whyte, Bill Rhoades & the Party Kings, the New Iberians

When: Sunday, April 27

3:00 - 7:00 pm

Where: the Old Hayden Island Yacht Club

12050 N Jantzen Drive (next to the Zupan's Building) Portland OR 97217

Admission: $25.00

Tickets available at the door or at Channel's Edge, 207 N Bridgeton Road97217

In the summer of 2007, the residents of Bridgeton neighborhood were notified by the Peninsula 2 Drainage District of plans to cut all the mature trees along the one mile stretch of Bridgeton Road. The Bridgeton Neighborhood Association (BNA) formed a "Tree Committee" to determine alternatives to this plan. For several months BNA engaged in intense negotiations and multiple meetings with the Drainage District, Army Corps of Engineers, Portland City Council members and administrators, FEMA, plus representatives from the offices of US Representative Earl Blumenauer and U S Senator Ron Wyden. When 13 trees were cut on September 19, 2007, BNA and The Columbia Riverkeeper filed legal action and secured a temporary stay to stop the cutting of another 100 trees.

This stay and the ensuing hearing allowed the BNA to inform the public about facts of levee safety and vegetation, and to clarify FEMA regulations concerning disaster relief and flood insurance. It was argued successfully the City of Portland does have oversight responsibility for the majority of the trees on the Bridgeton levee.

Today, three members of BNA meet weekly with a representative from the Army Corps of Engineers, the Portland City Arborist and members of the Board of the Peninsula 2 Drainage District. This group is negotiating a mutually acceptable program of tree removal and replanting for the Bridgeton levee.

While hundreds of hours of volunteer time were involved in this effort, there were expenses incurred. The neighborhood association has raised over $15,000 to cover legal and professional costs, but another $15,000 is needed to pay off the remaining debt.

Three popular, award-winning acts from the world of Blues music have consented to put on a show for the cause.

Ellen Whyte

Ellen Whyte has long been recognized as one of the most accomplished and dynamic Blues entertainers in the Pacific Northwest. A multi-award winning vocalist and guitarist, Ellen was elected to the Cascade Blues Association "Hall of Fame."

Her shows have elated crowds throughout Washington, Oregon, California, and the Midwest.

Bill Rhoades

Known as the "Godfather of the Northwest Blues," Bill Rhoades is on every must hear list for Blues Harp. Not only is he a much awarded Hall of Fame inductee, he is an acclaimed Blues scholar and keeper of the true Flame. Bill Rhoades and the Party Kings are the acknowledged Masters of Chicago-style Blues and Texas Blues, adding their own distinct color to the palette. And that color is pure, straight no chaser, Blues.

The New Iberians

Taking their name from the town of New Iberia, Louisiana, the hot pepper sauce capital of the known universe, they are a Portland band that combines Louisiana Zydeco, New Orleans Second Line and Memphis Soul into a bluesy zesty gumbo of unique and infectiously danceable good time music.

Lots of food and drink options, lots of dancing and belly dancing shows, a silent auction that promises great gifts for a bargain; all is going toward preserving a vital part of Portland, and having a red hot and blue Arbor Day.

So get some tickets, save the trees, and have an Arbor Day weekend like you've never quite experienced.

Map to Old Hayden Island Yacht Club

12050 N Jantzen Drive 97217,+Portland,+OR+97217,+USA&sa=X&oi=map&ct=image

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