PIR Offering Free Tickets to Rose Cup Races for Kenton Residents

13064574_10153744904273842_2490951681666139451_oThe Portland International Raceway has graciously provided the Kenton Neighborhood Association with free tickets to the Rose Cup Races (July 29-31) for Kenton residents. If you would like tickets, please contact us.

PDX NET: Bulletin for July Released

Take a look at the latest Portland Neighborhood Emergency Teams BULLETIN below:


PIR Holding Open House on Sunday

The Portland International Raceway is inviting the community to come down to the track for an open house on June 26th.  The city’s press release on the event is below:

Portland International Raceway Hosting Open House on Sunday, June 26

PIR offering on-track opportunities, displays, pro drivers and more 

(Portland, OR) –

Portland International Raceway (PIR) is hosting an Open House on Sunday, June 26 in conjunction with and benefitting the Friends of PIR organization.  Admission is free to attendees and will spotlight the many PIR user groups and the diverse set of activities the venue offers to the residents of the Portland metro area and around the Northwest.

The public is welcome to meet and get photos with special guests including Christian Fittipaldi, two-time and current IMSA Prototype Driver’s Champion and Indy Car veteran with Newman/Haas Racing. Fittipaldi is a huge fan of Portland and says he is very excited to be back to meet with neighbors and fans.  Another former Indy Car driver, and Portland’s own Parker Johnstone, will bring his 1995 Reynard – the vehicle which won the very first Indy Car pole position for Honda’s racing team.

On-track activities will bring added excitement to the day.  Visitors to the Open House can take their own street car for two paced laps of PIR (for a donation to Friends of PIR of $20 per car).  And for those wanting to get their pulse rates up, track rides are available in cars ranging from fast street cars, to exotic sports cars to full race cars, including 500 horsepower Porsches and stock cars.  Donations start at $30 person and up depending on the car.  Helmets and driving suits will be provided as needed.

“This is a day to celebrate all things PIR and have the chance to show off the venue’s versatility”, says PIR Track Manager E.C. Mueller.  “We thank our user groups, supporting businesses and volunteers who all pitch in to make this possible.”

Cars on display will include vintage and modern racing cars, true classics and both European and US vehicles.  More information about the Open House is available at www.portlandraceway.com or by calling 503-823-7223.

“Portland International Raceway operates a marvelous array of diverse events which attract visitors from far and wide – all without any General Fund tax dollars,” notes Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz.  “From traditional road races to the spectacular annual holiday lights at the track, PIR is a wonderful destination. I admire the traditions and the versatility of this distinctive Portland venue.”

“The raceway is a unique and exciting part of the Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) system, and in fact it is unique in the country,” says PP&R Director Mike Abbaté.  “PIR generates hundreds of jobs in the area, bringing business to hotels, restaurants, the shops that cater to PIR users, from bicycle racers to runners to car builders, and generates millions of dollars each year to the regional economy.  We are proud to have PIR in the Portland Parks & Recreation portfolio.”

About Portland International Raceway

PIR is owned by the City of Portland and is managed within the Parks & Recreation Department. Beginning in 1961 “Portland’s Fastest City Park” has hosted to a variety of events including road racing, motocross, car cruise-ins, drag racing, swap meets, bicycle racing and numerous foot relays and runs.  PIR is an enterprise fund, meaning it receives zero City tax dollars while providing entertainment to approximately 350,000 combined visitors, participants and spectators of all ages each year.

About Friends of PIR

Friends of PIR is a 501(c3) nonprofit committed to the preservation and enhancement of Portland International Raceway (PIR) as a resource for those who use it, both participants and spectators alike; sustaining and expandingPIR’s civic contribution as an institution in north Portland; providing guidance and support for the ongoing management of PIR in a manner that assures its ongoing value as a venue for motorsports and other diverse forms of recreation and entertainment.


Portland Harbor Proposed Cleanup Comment Period Begins

The public comment period for cleanup of the Portland Harbor Superfund Site launched yesterday and goes until August 8th. See an official release from the EPA below:

Portland Harbor Proposed Cleanup Plan and Public Comment Period

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking formal public comment on the Proposed Cleanup Plan for the Portland Harbor Superfund Site in Portland, Oregon from June 9, 2016 until August, 8, 2016.

The Portland Harbor Superfund Site is located on the lower Willamette River approximately between the Broadway Bridge and Sauvie Island. This area is contaminated with many hazardous substances. The most widespread contaminants of human health significance are polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs-now banned) and dioxins/furans. The most widespread contaminants of ecological significance are PCBs, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), dioxins and furans, and the pesticide DDT (now banned). EPA has determined that human health and environmental risks posed by the Portland Harbor site are high enough to take action under the Superfund Law. After many years of studying the Site, the EPA is releasing a Proposed Cleanup Plan.

EPA’s Proposed Cleanup Plan for the Portland Harbor Superfund Site presents EPA’s preferred alternative or option to lower risks to people and the environment from contamination in the lower Willamette River and its river banks. Alternative I, EPA‘s preferred alternative, reduces risks to human health and the environment to acceptable levels by dredging and/or capping 291 acres of contaminated sediments and 19,472 lineal feet of contaminated river bank, followed by 23 years of monitored natural recovery. The preferred alternative also includes disposal of dredged sediment in both an on-site confined disposal facility and upland landfills. This alternative will cost about $746 million and take 7 years of construction in the river. This alternative will address waste that poses the greatest threat to people and the environment through construction and relies on monitored natural recovery to continue to reduce remaining lower contaminant concentrations to acceptable levels.

Public comment is critical and EPA believes the best cleanup plans are developed and implemented with the support of a well-informed community. The public is encouraged to review and submit comments on the Proposed Cleanup Plan to EPA during the formal 60-day public comment period beginning on June 9, 2016 and ending on August 8, 2016.

EPA will host official Public Meetings to overview the Proposed Plan and take oral and written public comments.

You are invited to attend the official EPA Public meetings below to be held in Portland, Oregon:

·        June 24, 2016, 11:30am to 8pm, City of Portland Building, 1120 SW 5th Ave.

·        June 29, 2016, 11:30am to 8pm, Portland EXPO Center, 2060 N Marine Dr.

·        July 11, 2016, 11:30am – 8pm, University Place Conference Center, 310 SW Lincoln St.

·        July 20, 2016, 11:30am – 8pm, Ambridge Center, 1333 NE Martin Luther King Blvd.

All locations are easily accessible via MAX trains and bus lines.

EPA will offer two presentations on the Proposed Plan during each public meeting at the following times:

·        12noon to 12:30pm

·        6pm to 6:30pm

Russian, Spanish, Vietnamese, and Chinese interpreters will be available during the June 24th meeting.  Please notify Laura Knudsen knudsen.laura@epa.gov or 503-326-3280, no later than two weeks prior to the other public meetings to request language interpretation assistance.

Throughout the 60 day comment period, written comments may be submitted via:

·        Email: harborcomments@epa.gov

·        Online comment box: https://www.epa.gov/or/forms/comment-epas-proposed-cleanup-plan-portland-harbor-superfund-site

·        Postal mail: ATTN: Harbor Comments, U.S. EPA, 805 SW Broadway, Suite 500, Portland, OR 97205

The public is encouraged to review the Proposed Plan, Fact Sheet and supporting documents at the following locations:

·        EPA’s website http://go.usa.gov/3Wf2B

·        Multnomah County Central Library, 801 SW 10th Ave., Portland OR

·        St. Johns Library, 7510 N Charleston Ave., Portland OR

·        Kenton Library, 8226 N Denver Ave., Portland OR

Questions? Contact Alanna Conley at 503-326-6831


Follow-up From Last Night’s Meeting

The Kenton Neighborhood Association hosted an open house and general meeting last night at DISJECTA. If you attend or not, be sure to take a look at The Kenton Lead Blob site. As well, The Kenton Lead Blob documentary is embedded below:

The Eastside Portland Air Coalition (EPAC) also provided the attached letter as follow-up to last night’s meeting:

Kenton neighbors,
Thank you so much for inviting us last night; we had a marvelous time and wow do you know how to set up a spread! Thank you for the food; it was delicious. We had lots of good conversations during tabling and after the presentations. We met a lot of people ready for action or already taking action for air quality. We saw connections being made between residents. Very exciting. Thank you!
Here are some links and information for your members. Some of this we had available last night and some of it came in this morning. I hope you have a mechanism for sharing this with your members.
The link to the Governor’s 18-month regulatory overhaul of the DEQ’s permitting and rule-making process to prioritize human health: cleanerairoregon.org. I have attached the timeline that can be found on the website. All DEQ meetings are open to the public. There are webinars and opportunities for public input/comment.
Link to the final US Forest Service moss study:
Here us the link specific to the APES and ORRCO [the two oil re-refining places we were talking about] issue that impacts Kenton as well as St Johns, Bridgeton, and Hayden Island:  http://www.deq.state.or.us/nwr/northportland.htm

HiNoon/Hayden Island FB group: https://www.facebook.com/haydenisland/?fref=ts

Hayden Island resident and activist Mary Lou Putnam’s blog on local pollution: www.CauseForABlog.com
And this from Mary Lou: “Kentonites must alert DEQ and EPA each time you detect the petrol based acrid off-gassing. You should report the wind direction, time of day, and intensity on a scale of 1-24. (They told us last fall they don’t really pay attention unless the intensity is at least a 20). In the past, the lack of alerts by concerned citizens have contributed to air permits to be extended, and lax enforcement. ” Here are direct emails to the DEQ & EPA folks dealing with this:
Portland’s own invaluable and non-profit resource: www.LeadSafeAmerica.org
Portlanders for Safe Schools facebook page (Parents organizing around lead at PPS) https://www.facebook.com/groups/1554595391509394/
www.portlandcleanair.org for DEQ/EPA/Fire Marshal data/maps on hazardous materials being used and dtored in Multnomah and Washington Counties.
information about the Precautionary Principle: http://www.sehn.org/precaution.html
and, of course:
Eastside Portland Air Coalition (facebook)
Adequately-funded, health-based Air Toxics regulation, permitting and enforcement based on the Precautionary Principle!
Thanks again,
Katharine Salzmann

Trailer for The Kenton Lead Blob Released

The Kenton Lead Blob, a short documentary put together by University of Oregon journalism students, about supposed lead contamination in Kenton is scheduled to premiere at the Kenton Neighborhood Association General Meeting and Open House on June 8th. Ahead of the debut, a trailer for the film has been released. Check it out on Vimeo.

Application Deadline Extended for Kenton’s Food Carts

The Portland Development Commission (PDC) has extended the deadline for parties interested in operating a food cart at Kenton’s future pod, which will be called Nelson Plaza, to June 7th. According to the PDC, they have “not received [a] sufficient number of applicants” to move forward in the selection process.

The Request for Interest is attached below. Applications can be obtained by contacting Sue Lewis.

Does Kenton Really Have a Lead Problem?

Back in February, The Oregonian/OregonLive published maps of toxic heavy metals found in moss during research done by the U.S. Forest Service in 2013. While the maps are considered to have rough boundaries, there is little denying that they show Kenton as a lead hotspot, sending some Kenton neighbors to a near panic.

Seeking to better understand lead levels in the neighborhood, Kenton resident Zach Putnam has been actively investigating what he calls the lead “blob” supposedly floating over the neighborhood as part of an University of Oregon journalism project with Richard Percy and David MacKay.

Moss map

Pins show the locations of moss samples used to create The Oregonian/OregonLive’s heat map of lead levels.

“My house sits just inside the red part of the map, and I wanted to know more,” decided Putnam.

Based on Putnam’s findings, The Oregonian/OregonLive only used three data points in creating their lead map, and only one of those data points, taken near N Arygle and N Peninsular, showed a higher level of lead. The so-called blob is just the result of computer modeling visualizing those three points.

“A heat map is a misleading way to visualize so few data points,” said Putnam. “We do not believe there is a hotspot of lead contamination in Kenton as the Oregonian’s map indicates.”

Beyond the lack of data points, it’s not known how the measurement used in the moss sampling, micrograms per dry kilogram, translates to a level that might pose a health risk, so while a single moss sample showed a higher relative level of lead, it wasn’t necessarily at a level high enough to be unsafe.

The Oregonian/OregonLive actually did their own lead testing to attempt to verify the supposed hotspot only to find fairly low levels, under 43 parts per million, in all their tests.

In the ensuing months since the maps were published, Putnam has been collecting samples from across the neighborhood and getting them tested through the donation-based soil testing service offered by the Lead Safe America Foundation in SE Portland.

The results?

All Kenton samples have been under the federal level approved for play areas. As Putnam explained, “None of our Kenton soil samples tested above the federal hazard level for lead in areas where children might play (400 parts per million).”

Soil Tests

Some lead soil tests from Kenton

According to Putnam, the highest levels detected in Kenton from the roughly 60 samples taken thus far have been located at Portland International Raceway—potentially caused by the still permitted use of leaded gasoline on the track.

However, Putnam pointed out that his work isn’t complete: “We want to collect more data so we can prove this theory and better inform our community about local contamination risks.” Therefore, if anyone has soil results that they would like included in Putnam’s research, please contact him at KentonSoilSamples@gmail.com.

Putnam and his fellow classmates plan to publish their findings online soon and will give a brief presentation at the next Kenton Neighborhood Association General Meeting and Open House that will focus on soil and air quality on June 8th.


The Kenton Farmers Market Resumes on June 1st


The Kenton Farmers Market is set to return to N McClellan St and and N Denver Ave but on Wednesdays from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. starting next month! Here is the official release from Portland Farmers Market:

Kenton Farmers Market is gearing up for a great season. The market will be held in the same spot as last year, at McClellan and Denver, but on a new day: WEDNESDAYS from 3-7pm June-September.

Along with many of last year’s favorites, we look forward to welcoming new produce, cheese,  stone fruit,  and berry vendors. This year we will be offering an increased $10 matching program for folks with Oregon Trail cards, called Double Up Food Bucks. Swipe your SNAP card for tokens at the market information tent to get your Food Bucks. We’ll also have demonstrations about eating healthy on a budget with OSU Extension every 2nd and 3rd market of the month, along with neighborhood visitors like Kenton Library doing a bilingual story time at market.

Want to join the fun?! We’re looking for a steady volunteer to join us at the market each week. Contact annarose@portlandfarmersmarket.org for more information.

Interested in Opening a Kenton Food Cart?

The Portland Development Commission is currently requesting responses from parties interested in operating a food cart at Kenton’s future pod. The Request for Interest is attached below. Applications can be obtained by contacting Sue Lewis.


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