THE "LETTERS TO THE EDITOR" ARE BELOW THE EDITORIAL

From The Editor

THE BEE gets a promotion!

THE BEE’s websites will look about the same this month. No surprise there.

But, the print version will look a bit different – and if you have seen it, you are already aware of it.

After decades of being a “tabloid size” newspaper – 16 inches tall – Community Newspapers and Pamplin Media, our ownership, has promoted us to being a “broadsheet” newspaper.

You’d think that means the newspaper would be wider. Not so. It is still a little less than a foot broad, just as it was before. The difference comes in the height of the pages: The print surface is now 21.5 inches tall, and THE BEE will now be the same physical size as our sister area-wide newspaper, the Portland Tribune, and the 22 other Oregon newspapers in our locally-owned group.

Going to this new size, with our newly upgraded press in Gresham, will mean better reproduction in the print process, but it also means that the color pages are in different places than they were before, and that means that your editor had to find a way to revamp the way we present our Inner Southeast stories and features, and where in the paper they appear. The middle of the paper used to be our color feature section; now the middle is largely black and white, and the color is expanded at the beginning and end.

Since we have no color on our editorial page, that page will be moving further into the paper, and the extra room on that page allows us to consolidate reader “letters to the editor” on the same page, rather than start it on page 2. We got letters again this month, but they are just in a different place. And that’s true for everything else you are used to reading in THE BEE: Look and ye shall find.

There are fewer pages in the paper now, but they are bigger pages, and you are still getting all the same content you would have if we were still printing in tabloid size.

It is significant, we think, that in an era when many newspapers are downsizing, THE BEE and all of our sister Oregon newspapers are expanding. It appears that our style of local journalism may be pointing the way to a bright future for any newspapers that choose to embrace it.

One more thing is obvious this month, and you might be wondering if this is also something you are going to see regularly: The “wraparound” four-page informational section by Advantis Credit Union, to mark its return to serve its many longtime members in Southeast, at their new full-service office on Woodstock Boulevard.

We are welcoming this move ourselves – we’ve been a member for a couple of decades, and were sorry when MAX construction closed and demolished their former office on S.E. 17th in Brooklyn, across from the PGE headquarters building. Now we don’t have to drive up to Belmont Street to see an Advantis teller once again.

This elaborate Advantis section is also a bit of a distinction for THE BEE, in a way, since you probably have only seen this done before occasionally in the Oregonian and the Tribune.

But, no, this is not something you are likely to see very often in THE BEE. This is a very special, but rather expensive, type of advertising – valuable mainly for a major announcement like this! It’s just a coincidence that it happened in the first “broadsheet” issue of THE BEE, and our next issue, in March, will be the first in which the new size of THE BEE will be clearly apparent.

Enough about us; we just thought you deserved an explanation for the very different looking issue of THE BEE you may be holding in your hands right now.

We are proud that we are the most-read of any newspaper or magazine in Inner Southeast Portland, with an estimated 45,000 readers every month – but that’s only because we bring you more solid news about the place you live in than any other medium, and that’s ALL we do. If it’s not about here, it’s not in our paper.

And we also want to salute our contributors, who are responsible for that: David F. Ashton, Rita A. Leonard (who has been with THE BEE longer than anybody), Elizabeth Ussher Groff, Becky Luening, and our historians Eileen G. Fitzsimons and Dana Beck.

They’ll still be there every month with stories just for you, in our new taller-than-ever pages!


Letters to the Editor

Clarified: Memories of Sellwood

Editor,

Loved Dana Beck’s article [December BEE] on the confectionaries in Sellwood. I have fond memories of the root beer floats, and even better – if you had enough money from your paper route or from picking berries during the summer – the rich chocolate milk shakes.

I do have some contrary information regarding the Leipzig Confectionary, as my deceased mother, Genevieve Leipzig Hainley, was the daughter of the owners and worked at the confectionary, along with her three brothers – where she learned her pie-baking talent from a Mrs. Courtney, which she then passed on to all ten of her children.

First off is that Grandpa’s business was never at the current location of the Leipzig Tavern. As noted in the ad accompanying the article, it was “Catty Corner Sellwood Theatre”, which would put it on the N.W. corner of Spokane and 13th, which jibes with my Uncle Bob Leipzig’s recollection of card games accompanied by some bootleg Prohibition beer in the dirt basement of the building that occupied that corner, prior to its conversion into a Flying A gas station, which was what was there in my growing-up days in the 50's and 60's.

Grandpa Pete’s lunch counter/confectionary moved from that location to the current location of the Reflections Hair Salon during the war years and then, after Grandpa Pete died and his business was sold, the new owners moved it to its current location and converted it to a tavern – much to the displeasure of my Uncle Frank, who was the bishop of the diocese of Baker, Oregon, and did not like the Leipzig name being associated with a drinking establishment.

Pat Hainley
Sellwood

DANA BECK RESPONDS: That was great information from Pat. I knew The Leipzig was at the corner of 13th and Spokane – but I didn’t know the rest of the story, or its second location before it became a tavern. The nice thing about writing an article on history is that it sparks readers to write in and correct any misinformation before our own history disappears completely.

 

Supermarket prices

Editor,

I felt compelled to follow up on Tom Hoff’s letter to the editor about advertised Safeway sale prices not showing up on the receipt. I can confirm his concern. I shop at the Woodstock Safeway all the time as I live within walking distance. Over roughly the last two years, I've had to bring this issue to Safeway personnel no less than six times.

Entering my Safeway card number is second nature to me. Each time I’ve brought the discrepancy to someone's attention, it was confirmed that the sale price was not entered into the system. This even happened to me twice on the same product within a couple of days. They still had not entered the sale price on the subsequent purchase.

I have previously voiced the issue to management. Now I always check my receipt before leaving the store to avoid making another trip. I would recommend that others do the same.

Greg Larson
via e-mail

Concerned about city retrofit mandate’s effect on historic buildings

Editor,

Thank you for being a welcome voice of reason in regards to Portland’s proposed earthquake retrofit program.

I cut my teeth in the early '80’s in construction doing earthquake retrofit on buildings like the New Market Theater. In many old structures there is a limit to what can be done at any price. The idea that a broad brush requirement that antique buildings meet anything close to modern standards is absurd. Any honest engineer will tell you that. If we value at all what historical structures provide us, we must reconcile this fact with our need to maintain and preserve what is left of what is a vital part of our human experience in living here.

These places are our legacy – the legacy from the generations that have gone before us as well as our own. The quality of our community and no less than the quality of our humanity itself is, in the end, measured not in dollars but in who we really are. The richness of the living history that resides in these places is an essential part of that humanity. That richness is simply beyond the reach of even the most talented architect or urban planner. Without that actual history it simply is not the real stuff. The idea that these old buildings can or should perform in the same way as newer buildings is therefore preposterous, period. Worst of all, the way things are going around this town lately

Raises the question, “who is in charge in this town anyway?” Is it the city government that we, the people, elected to serve us – or do these so called city leaders have other voices whispering in their ears who have a stake in making old buildings unaffordable to own. Someone assure me that this is not the case please. But the degree of impracticality suggests that there are other motivations beyond public safety. I am of the opinion that the apparent attitude these days at the city would have spelled doom for  the New Market Theater, The Dekum Building, and others that I worked on as a young carpenter. In their place would have been a new tower designed by some firm with no allegiance to what has made this community a key part of the center of our lives.

Owen Steere
via e-mail


Neighborhood’s tree lights paid for by donors; thanks

Editor,

We did it! We raised $7,000, and purchased new LED lights for our neighborhood’s Christmas Tree [on the Oaks Bottom Bluff, on the 13th-Bybee curve]. A huge thank you to the almost 100 donors who made the new lights possible. Thanks also to all the businesses that helped, including our heavy hitters: Heiberg Garbage & Recycling, Wilhelm’s Portland Memorial, Rumpus Events, Smith Crane, Red’s Electric, and Treecology Tree Service. Also, a special thanks to the Edwards family, who recently purchased the property where the tree is located, and who agreed to let us continue to decorate the tree, hopefully for years to come.

Our Christmas Tree tradition began in the 1960’s with Dent Thomas, a longtime Sellwood businessman, along with PGE, and SMILE. The tree went dark for a while, from 1974, until it was re-lit in 1989 with the help of a handful of neighborhood businesses and families – some of the very same ones who were instrumental in supporting and lighting the tree this year. This time around, we had over 100 people contributing money, equipment, and services. The lighting of the tree has truly become a community celebration.Mark your calendar for Saturday November 17, 2018. We’ll be hanging the lights that day and installing the star (which we promise to get straight). We will light the tree on Thanksgiving Day at 6 pm.

On behalf of the Sellwood-Westmoreland neighborhood, thank you again to everyone who contributed. We look forward to the new lights shining for years and years to come. Happy New Year!

Matt Hainley
(a/k/a the guy in the crane)


Get MADD

Editor,

As a member of Southeast Portland Rotary, I would like to let people in Southeast know that MADD [Mothers Against Drunk Driving] invites anyone who is impacted by an impaired driver to reach a Victim's Advocate on our local Victim’s Hotline, 503/908-1509. Individuals seeking further Information about the MADD organization can go to its website – https://www.madd.org.

Kathy Stromvig
Former President
Southeast Portland Rotary Club

 

Upset about plans for Foster Road homeless shelter

Editor,

Monday 12/18/17 the Foster-Powell Neighborhood Association was informed that a low-barrier homeless shelter was to be placed on 6144 S.E. Foster Road. They gave no formal notification and e-mailed the neighborhood association mid-holiday season. Previously told this was not a “done deal”, we were informed last night that it would continue regardless of our concerns and input.

The city officials we met with had not done their research on the area. It boasts the shelter is near social services, but the closest ones are approximately 20 blocks away. No grocery store, pharmacy, police, or medical services nearby. It is, however, close to three public schools, across the street from an alternative high school, and down the street from a YMCA and day care. They stated that our neighborhood had a large population of homeless individuals, yet they would be bringing people from other shelters here.

The offered explanation for this location: cost effective rent and two bus lines. In addition to their lack of knowledge regarding the neighborhood, the panel’s demeanor was aloof, at best. Marc Jolin, Joint Offices of Homeless Services Director, stated that he had no knowledge of the crime statistics related to the recently opened shelter in Sellwood. . .

As for Mayor Wheeler, he offered no insight as to how he plans to make the area surrounding this shelter any different from others in Portland. . . As a neighborhood and city, we deserve more from our elected officials and those in positions of power. . . At a time when I’m worried about the fate of my neighborhood, you have at least given me something to look forward to, and that is the next election.

Addison Rutter
via e-mail

EDITOR’S NOTE: There seem to be some misconceptions here, and the facts might be reassuring to this reader. One, this is NOT a City of Portland project; it is a Multnomah County project, although the city does endorse it. Two, the existing shelter mentioned – in Westmoreland, rather than in Sellwood – is a reservation-only shelter for women and couples, with no services for those without reservations; is subject to strict rules; and provides services within – including showers and clothes-washing, lockers, computer services, job assistance, rehoming assistance, and meals. The Westmoreland shelter has been in operation for quite some time, is adjacent to residential housing, and is within a block of a major facility for children – and, since THE BEE is located about four blocks from it, we can say with some knowledge of the facts that it has so far posed no problem in the north Westmoreland community. Police calls to that location have been few, and then mostly relating to people coming up to the Springwater Trail trailhead across the street. In fact, residents in Westmoreland have been donating clothing, and volunteering to prepare meals for the residents. Since the new Foster shelter will be operated in the same general manner, and run by the same nonprofit organization, we would not expect problems from the new shelter in the Foster-Powell neighborhood either.




Letters to the Editor may be submitted via e-mail by clicking HERE.

All letters to the editor are subject to editing for clarity and available space, and all letters become property of THE BEE.


 


Comments? News tips?

Click here to e-mail us!

Note to readers: At some point, this, our original Internet website, will be replaced at this web address by our new website, as part of the Community Newspapers group. At that time, you will still be able to access this, our original -- and smartphone-friendly -- website, if you save this address: 
www.ReadTheBee.mobi. You'll still have your choice of which one to visit!

READY TO MOVE ON TO THE COMMUNITY STORIES AND CALENDAR OF EVENTS ON PAGE 4?  
CLICK HERE!