To fully serve the community, the Mid-county Memo offers this section to showcase upcoming special events, celebrations of milestones in our readers lives, those seemingly small accomplishments that often do not receive the recognition they deserve and everyday events that should be shared with friends and neighbors.
Memo Pad submissions for the February issue are due by Thursday, Jan. 15. For best results, e-mail Darlene Vinson at email@example.com. Or mail submissions to 3510 N.E. 134th Ave., Portland, OR 97230. To leave a phone message, call 503-287-8904. The fax number is 503-249-7672.
High school talent selected as all-stars
Each winter the Oregon Music Educators Association gathers to share knowledge and ideas to keep music programs alive and healthy in Oregon schools. The program includes performances by students selected to the OMEA All-State choirs and bands. Mid-county area schools are well represented this year.
The following David Douglas High School students were selected to perform in the wind ensemble of the OMEA All- State Band and Symphony Orchestra: Alex Burfitt, Lauren Johnson and Julie Schofield (clarinet); Jaycie Morin and Aeron Fredman (horn); Victor Dang (trumpet); Kyle East and Nigel Britton (trombone); Joe Ready (euphonium) and Aaron Weidman and Jason Kelly (percussion).
Shannon Webb (French horn) and David Toscano (trumpet) will represent Parkrose High School in the All-State Band.
In addition, the following Parkrose High choir students were selected to the All-State Choir: Alex Hall and Kayla Stewart (soprano 1); Taylor Mura (soprano 2); Mia Heaslet and Tamara Dan (alto 1); Ciara Dines (alto 2); Josh Latter (bass 1) and Jackson Singleton (bass 2).
Reynolds High School and Portland Christian High School will be represented as well. Student names were not available at press time.
The 2009 OMEA conference is Jan. 16-18 at the Hilton and Conference Center in Eugene. The event will conclude with the All-State High School Gala Concert at Hult Center at 1 p.m. on Jan. 18. To learn more, please visit www.oregonmusic.org.
DDHS honor student selected as Teen of the Month
Vicky, as she prefers to be called, is a member of the National Honor Society, earning her perfect GPA while taking advanced placement classes in English, government, psychology and calculus. Last year she was a finalist in the all-around category of the Multnomah Education Service District Academic All-Stars, winning a $500 scholarship. In September 2008, DDHS recognized her with its Outstanding Student Award.
Galuza plays trumpet in the football marching band, the basketball pep band, jazz band and concert band; she earned a varsity letter and the Outstanding Musician Award. She earned a second varsity letter on the tennis team.
As an alternative to an internship required for health sciences, Galuza coordinates a monthly blood drive for the American Red Cross, has been a volunteer in a summer reading program and, until the program was discontinued this year, helped incoming freshmen adjust as part of the Link Crew.
Galuza teaches Sunday school, attends weekly bible studies and sings in the youth choir at Portland Slavic Evangelical Baptist Church.
In addition to church, school and volunteer activities, Galuza is a crew member at Jamba Juice and enjoys skiing and playing tennis. She also loves to go trout fishing with her father. She is considering a career in nursing and is eyeing the programs at George Fox University and the University of Portland.
To learn more about the Gateway Elks Lodge Teenager of the Month program, please visit www.gatewayelks.com. Applications can be downloaded from the Web site or can be obtained by calling the lodge office at 503-255-6535.
Local dentist helps visiting students
Dr. Dave Carothers helps people smile.
Of course he does it with the latest skills and techniques of his craft, providing dental health care and helping his patients improve their appearance, but hes also providing free dental work to foreign exchange students.
The Mt. Hood Community College Cooperative Association of States for Scholarships program has been collaborating with Carothers and the MHCC Dental Hygiene program to provide free dental work.
The CASS program contributes to Central American and Caribbean development by providing high quality technical, academic and cultural education experiences to promising students from the region. The students live with host families and attend MHCC, returning to their home country at the end of the year equipped with skills to support sustainable development.
Carotherss office is in the Adventist Health Center, located between Adventist Medical Center and Mall 205.
Eight years ago when a CASS student had a dental emergency, CASS Program Coordinator David Sussman noticed that almost all the CASS students needed dental care, as this is a luxury in their home countries. Carothers offered his services and organized a one-day event. Carothers opens up his office on a day it is usually closed and works on all the CASS students teeth.
This is a pure act of generosity, said Sussman. Were talking tens of thousands of dollars of free dental work that hes providing our students each year.
Carothers offered the free clinic last month and felt the spirit of the holidays.
We loved doing this during the Christmas season, Carothers said, as there are others in the world who are not as fortunate as us. Giving is the spirit of Christmas.
And five years ago, Carothers started coordinating with the MHCC Dental Hygiene program to provide the necessary radiographs. Dental hygiene students are required to take four sets of radiographs each term of their second year, and this provides them with an opportunity to complete their requirements.
This collaboration also provides the dental hygiene students with the opportunity to rub shoulders with students from another country and to practice being good communicators, said Klissa Johnson, dental hygiene instructor.
This is a great example of the community coming together to benefit people who are in need of a little assistance, Sussman said. This is a great statement about the college and local communitys support of students from developing countries.
Parkrose student wins essay contest
Laura Mersereau died in 1999 at age 46 as a result of drug and alcohol addictions begun in her teens. After her death, her brother Brad Mersereau established the Laura Mersereau Memorial Essay Contest and teamed up with Oregon Partnership to promote the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse by high school students.
Aquatics center almost set to open
The long-awaited grand opening celebration of the new East Portland Community Center Aquatic Center, a dream for many since EPCC opened in 1998, has been delayed. Lack of materials and the weather are to blame.
When it eventually opens, the 24,000-square-foot addition on the backside of the East Portland Community Center, 740 S.E. 106th Ave., will house three pools a conventional lap pool for serious exercise buffs, a warm-water leisure pool for seniors and young children, and a whirlpool spa. It will be the third public pool in mid-Multnomah County, after the facilities in Parkrose and David Douglas high schools.
One of the first green aquatics centers in the country, the EPCC Aquatics Center will feature one of Portlands largest solar arrays, reducing energy use by up to 74 percent and water use by 54 percent over national standards. An innovative spa-water-reuse system will also prevent 1,700 gallons per week from entering the sewer system, while an advanced pool filtration system will save at least one million gallons of water per year.
Nominate a woman of achievement
March of Dimes Greater Oregon Chapter is accepting applications for the 27th Annual White Rose Award -- A Salute to Women of Achievement.
White Rose honorees are selected on the basis of volunteerism, professional excellence, commitment to improving the status of women in the region and contributions to the community as a whole. Honorees must live or work in Oregon. Award recipients will be recognized at the White Rose Luncheon, Thursday, May 21 at the Portland Marriott, 1401 S.W. Naito Parkway in downtown Portland.
Nomination applications are available by calling 503-222-9434 or visiting www.marchofdimes.com/oregon. Applications must be submitted by Friday, Jan. 16 at 4 p.m. to the March of Dimes Portland office, 1220 S.W. Morrison, Suite 510, Portland, OR 97205.
Proceeds from the luncheon benefit March of Dimes, the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health.
Mid-Multnomah County is brimming with women of achievement. Submit your nomination today.
Bundle up your home without spending a bundle
With winter upon us, many homeowners are looking for ways to keep their homes warm and toasty without going overboard on energy use. Fortunately, there are some simple fixes that can make a difference right away and most only require a few minutes to complete.
"As cooler weather sets in, homeowners can improve the comfort of their home and wrap in energy savings without a lot of effort or expense," said Steve Lacey, director of energy efficiency at Energy Trust of Oregon, a nonprofit serving Oregon utility customers. "There are a number of quick ways to reduce drafts and keep warm air where you want it."
Energy Trust offers these cold weather tips to homeowners:
1. Use your curtains. Open curtains and drapes during the day to let the sun in and close them at night to help keep heat from escaping.
2. Close the fireplace damper. Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is going. Leaving the damper open is like keeping a window wide open during the winter; up to 8 percent of heat from the furnace can escape through the chimney.
3. Weatherstrip doors and windows. Seal drafty windows and doors with easy-to-apply weatherstripping. Replace the door sweep on the bottom of any door where cool air is creeping in.
4. Seal gaps and holes. Seal air leaks on exterior walls using caulk and spray insulating foam. Check for gaps where phone and cable wires or pipes enter the house.
5. Add a layer to windows. For a low-cost alternative to new high-efficiency windows, install interior plastic film storm windows available at most hardware stores. These lock into place and are more effective than ordinary plastic film coverings.
6. Wrap the water heater. Wrap your water heater in a special blanket available at most home center or hardware stores. It can save up to 10 percent in energy costs.
7. Check the furnace. Vacuum away dust and lint and install new furnace filters every month during heating season to be sure you are heating your home most effectively.
Energy Trust of Oregon, Inc., is a nonprofit organization dedicated to changing how Oregonians use energy by promoting energy efficiency and clean renewable energy for Oregon customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural and Cascade Natural Gas. For more information, visit the Energy Trust Web site, www.energytrust.org, or call 1-866-368-7878.
2-1-1 connects uninsured with low-cost health resources
Tough economic times are especially difficult for families seeking health care. Losing employment often means losing health insurance or the ability to pay for other options, such as COBRA. The nonprofit social service help line, 2-1-1, has seen a 12 percent increase in calls this year from people seeking low-cost medical treatment, dental care and prescription assistance. 2-1-1 helps callers locate available health and human services such as rent assistance, foreclosure prevention counseling, food boxes and health clinics. 211info staff anticipates the call volume will continue to grow. The help line serves northwest Oregon and southwest Washington; simply dial 2-1-1 on any phone.
"People new to poverty often don't know about community-based clinics that can help, and often wait until their situation becomes dire," 211info Call Center Specialist Jenny Dodd said. "Yesterday I heard from a caller who broke his leg a week ago and knew he couldn't afford to go to the emergency room. I encouraged him not to wait any longer, and we talked about his options to get treatment at one of the community clinics or to seek help at a lower-cost immediate-care clinic."
Waiting to seek help is also common for those seeking dental services. "Every day we hear from callers with broken teeth, abscesses and severe pain," 211info Call Center Specialist Emily Berndt said. With limited low-cost dental services available, callers are often referred to the emergency room for antibiotics and pain medication. About 53 percent of 2-1-1 callers are without health insurance, compared to 16 percent of all Oregonians.
2-1-1 refers callers to clinics that serve low-income or underserved populations, including the Coalition of Community Health Clinics. Tracy Gratto, executive director of the Coalition of Community Health Clinics, reports that over the past two months, their network of 13 safety net clinics in Multnomah County has seen a 15 percent increase in people seeking services.
The 2-1-1 help line is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Telephone interpreters are available to help in more than 170 languages. The nonprofit 211info has provided the 2-1-1 Community Information and Referral Help Line for the Portland Metro and Southwest Washington region since 2004.
For more information about 211info, visit www.211info.org. To search for low-cost health resources in your area, click on Search for Help.
For more information about the Coalition of Community Health Clinics, visit www.coalitionclinics.org.
Collaboration will enhance park property
Work will begin soon to enhance the Gates park property, located at Southeast 136th Avenue between Holgate Boulevard and Mall Street. The seven and a half acre site was acquired over a period of several years to provide a future park in the Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhood. While development of this new park is still years away, these enhancements will improve public access and recreational use of the property.
Portland Parks & Recreation is working with the Northwest College of Construction on this project, a partnership which will give NWCC students invaluable heavy equipment training and will enable PP&R to expand the available park space in east Portland.
The first steps will be to remove weedy shrubs and invasive plants, grade the site and establish appropriate access points. Once this is a complete, basic features like soft paths, open lawn, signage and seating areas will be installed. Construction work will begin later this month and continue through the winter. The park property will be open to the community in summer 2009.
Enhancements to the Gates park property are being funded by Park System Development Charges. Park SDCs help ensure that Portland's quality of life keeps pace with our changing city by providing additional parks, trails and natural areas in growing neighborhoods.
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