A Publication of the Boise Neighborhood Association
Working together Intership connects local businesses with Boise youth
Time for the Boise spring clean-up
By Mark Bernard Steck
By Laura Parisi
Help out and get free food! If you’d like to help out, contact Tara Hieggelke at email@example.com. Volunteers are needed to help load trucks and clean alleyways. Bring work gloves and water. Fresh Pot and Grand Central are donating coffee and pastries to reward volunteers for their efforts.
Psst...got an opinion on dog parks and leashes? Join our conversation on the Back Page!
Eat locally Fresh food galore and a new farmers market to open in May By Rita Traut-Kabeto Just what the doctor ordered— or rather, just what Alice Waters would order us to do if she had it her way. On a recent segment of 60 Minutes, Leslie Stahl interviewed Ms. Waters and called her the best cook not only in the US but perhaps even the entire world. Ms. Waters emphasized that she buys only fresh produce, and mainly that which is in season. So, when we buy fresh at the upcoming King Neighborhood market we will be in good company. The new King Farmers Market will be held on Sundays from 10 am to 2 pm at NE Wygant and NE 7th Avenue, just south of Alberta Street. It will run from May 3 through September 27. This will be in addition to the Interstate Farmers Market at Overlook Park Wednesday afternoons, 3 to
7 pm, starting May 20 and running through September 30. The Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (NECN) has been promoting the idea of another farmers market for our neighborhood and this wish has now become reality. The Portland Farmers Market, which operates 4 of the city’s 14 markets, will open the new King Farmers Market in partnership with the neighborhood coalition. Paige Coleman, executive director of NECN (and Boise resident) said that the area’s 12 inner north and northeast neighborhood associations have endorsed the project. An advisory council of 12 to 14 people will be assembled to represent the area’s interests and to guide the market’s development in keeping with community values and needs. Ms. Waters also promotes gardening as a subject to be taught in schools. Michelle Obama must have been listening, for she is creating a vegetable garden for the White House. That’s a great example of how we may stretch our dollars in
INTERN - Cont. on page 7
Plus! Ready to start your own home garden?! Check out Page 6 to get started!
FRESH! - Cont. on page 7
Recycle, recycle, recycle What you can bring: electronics, metal, yard debris, housing supplies for the ReBuilding Center and cell phones. There will be no plastic recycling this year. Prices are: $5 for a box of stuff, $10 per carload, $15 per pick-up truck, $20 for large trailers and $50 for a huge truck.
d Boise neighborhoo d local around the ay! M is th Eat fresh, healthy, an arket opening w King Farmers M ne e th de clu in to –
PRINTED ON RECYCLED PAPER
As they like to say, spring has sprung. Which means it’s time to clean out the basement—even if the rain doesn’t stop until June. So gather up your junk and bring it on over to Unthank Park between 9 am and 1 pm on Saturday, April 18. No, we’re not dumping it in the park, silly. It’s Scott Batchelar Spring Clean-up time!
Summers when you’re growing up mean freedom from school and teachers and endless assignments. A couple of sovereign months to make your own way. For Boise youth, spending some of this time productively can put a little money in your pocket while picking up invaluable job skills that can have a positive affect on things in life that you don’t even want to think about right now. But getting connected with a job can be tough these days. The Boise Youth Investment Project does just that. Sponsored by the Portland OIC, they are getting ready to kick off another summer season of involving 12 youth in the neighborhood by giving them gainful employment and invaluable work experience. And they get to earn a little money while they’re at it. Shane Endicott of Our United Villages has been involved with the program from the beginning.
3903 N. Mississippi Ave. Portland, OR 97227
Presorted Standard U.S. Postage Paid Portland, OR Permit No. 2235
THE BOISE VOICE
A letter from Boise Eliot Elementary By Molly Chun, Principal, Boise Eliot School It’s hard to believe it is almost spring! Boise Eliot students and staff continue to work hard, focused on student achievement. Our 3rd through 8th graders have completed the second round of state testing, the third round finishing in May. Parents should have received their child’s second trimester report card. As the 7th and 8th grade leadership ambassadors and I tour prospective Boise Eliot families through our school, we hear over and over and how impressed our visitors are with the academic focus they observe in every classroom. This month our Schools-Fami-
lies-Housing Community Grant was finalized. Authored by one of our parents, Jason Blumklotz, the grant will fund artists-in-residencies, community outreach projects and housing assistance for Boise Eliot families. I am excited to share with you some of the projects that are under way in many of our classrooms: Pre-K: Rejuvenation of the Boise Eliot gardens, including cleaning and planting as well as decorating the garden boxes with ceramic tile work with the support of an artistin-residence. 2nd grade will continue to work with EARTH ARTS (artists-in-residence). Their focus is on neighborhood habitats for local animals and the environment. 3rd grade will focus on their study
of Portland, in particular the Boise Eliot neighborhood. They will be working with the Boise Neighborhood Association and the NE Coalition of Neighborhoods on a project called Boise Voices, an oral history project involving elders from the neighborhood. The third graders will also work with an artist to create an outdoor history walk on the Boise Eliot grounds. 4th grade will be working with local architects studying and reproducing architectural models from our own neighborhood. 5th grade will continue to work with Norman Sylvester, Brian Foxworth and other musicians, including our own Ms. Underhill, learning about our neighborhood and culture through the history of black music. Middle school students have been
studying our neighborhood and working with the Classroom Law Project to look critically at safety issues in the community Their art focus for this project is still in the development stages. K and 1st grade: Project development is in process. We are very excited about the critical literacy inquiry process and projects our students are working on this year. A celebration of this year’s work will begin in May with a Community Art Walk (date TBD), Storybook Parade on May 29th and BEST Fair on June 4th. Thanks you for all you do to support your child and all of our Boise Eliot children. Warm regards, Molly Chun
Oral history project documents the voices of longtime Boise residents Students are teaming up to interview elders in the neighborhood By Apricot Irving The Boise Voices inter-generational history project is off and running. And if you’ve spent most of your life in the Boise neighborhood, we may soon be visiting your front porch. Thanks to a generous grant from the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods and the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, seven energetic third-graders from Boise-Eliot Elementary School and eight students from the Albina Youth Opportunity School have teamed up to record the stories of long-time Boise residents. Inspired by the rich and complicated history of this neighborhood, we hope to create an oral record that will remain long after we are gone. An audio CD, featuring excerpts from these interviews, will go on sale later this summer. We already have a long list of neighborhood elders whom we hope to interview, but we don’t want to leave anyone out. If you have stories to tell, we would love to hear them. Please contact Apricot Irving at 503501-6075 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved. Note: Despite similar names, the Boise Voice newspaper and the Boise Voices oral history project are unrelated.
Advertise Local Want to reach your neighborhood? We can help. Affordable Rates. Sassy Designers. email@example.com
THE BOISE VOICE
Making our voices heard Verse from Albina Youth Opportunity School poets
By Leightreona Frazier Feeling lonely deep inside I wonder why you left me dry Lost in sorrow, gone for now I wonder how I let you down Never knew this day would come I close my eyes to let tears run I pray to God, you’ll come back in my life Wishing instead of you, he’d take my life
Lying in silence, thinking of you Want to die just to be with you, just to say how much I loved you
As you live day by day know that your Living for a better future to come
You always said you’d be by my side Now you are I no longer have to cry
You know but also have the power to do better then her that came before you And not react to the unfair treatment that you faced
By Lenishia Pryer Lee-Lee hold your head up the obstacles you face will only last shortly
Glorify Jesus and look to him for as the friend, father, and mother you always wished to have But love the woman you Fell upon Even though childhood was taken Look to the future of your children And the future you’re preserving
Lee-Lee hold your head up Who you are today is because of the struggles you Survived A woman a wise woman
By Leonard Roach Waking up is like a blessing Waking up doing my morning chores and Get ready for my day as I do any other day Alarm sounding like a late night concert Getting in the shower as the sounds of the Water drops like a waterfall. Heading to school with my nice outfit thinking I’m real FLY
By Sha’Quoya Hillman Tossing and turning when it’s time to sleep today was a good day so why is this happening to me I feel a pain in my chest and I can’t breathe I’m thinking that it’s the alcohol and my daily trees I’m getting scared ‘cause I’m not at home I tell my friend to wake up so I won’t be alone this is how I felt that night and the next morning when I returned home I found out why I was tossing and turning trying to sleep my brother was getting shot 9 times on the street he was my heart now his no longer beats
When You’re Not Here By Tiffany Smith
The stars are bright When you’re not here it is dark No matter how far we are apart You will always be in My heart When you’re not here I start to fear When I don’t hear from You for days I start to worry Where you are The roses you gave me Maybe dry but your Love from them will Never fade they will Always be a memory In my heart you have Always been there From the start
Going along with my day Friends by my side kickin it and laughing Hoopin it up playin B-ball Heading home getting ready for the night tired, exhausted ready to End the night showering up getting Relaxed putting some food in my stomach Getting relaxed setting my alarm turn of the light it’s 4 hours After dark on my way to sleep I’m Thinking in my head I can’t wait To do my day over…again
THE BOISE VOICE
Stimulating the economy, one restaurant at a time An appetizer tour of the Boise neighborhood By Laura Parisi The Appetizer Tours began five years ago when my friend Claire and I were living in Chicago’s Hyde Park. Surrounded by many restaurants whose best assets were their appetizers, we plotted a route: popcorn shrimp at the Calypso Café followed by peach chicken wings at the Cajun place. Then potstickers and crab Rangoon at the Chinese restaurant and Tex-Mex-inspired egg rolls at the Italian joint (don’t ask). Now that Claire has joined me as my roommate here in Portland, we decided to do an Appetizer Tour Redux. While we were at it, I figured, I’d write about it for the Boise Voice. And since no restaurant review in this newspaper is complete without the inimitable voice of our very own Matt Howl, we invited him, too. Here is our story: Equinox 830 N. Shaver St. We begin the evening with a bang: oyster shooters and mushroom wontons. My companions need a brief lesson in how to properly eat the shots, which leads to an awkward moment that I’m sure Matt will tell you all about. The oysters are swimming in a mystery sweet-chili-mayonnaise aioli that I would gladly eat by
the spoonful if I were ever given the chance. In fact, that sauce may just be the Meaning of Life. The mushroom wontons are also delicious; the dough pockets are packed with bleu cheese and they, too, come with a fantastic mayonnaise-based sauce. But there are five wontons to split amongst the three of us. In an attempt to be egalitarian, I reach for my second, carefully and thoughtfully split it in half, and then proceeded to completely forget that I am sharing and scarf both halves in short order.
and a moist inside, crunchy outside. The oysters are good, but are missing something (perhaps the Meaning of Life?) and I feel the same way about the shrimp and the fish, but I love the hush puppies and the fritters. That’s when I realize: I’m so hungry that nothing without significant fluff or substance is going to sate me. I need bread. “I’m fried-food out!” I declare. We move on.
don’t know, “spinach” in their sips. Me? I taste “wine.” Oysters prove to be no different—they’re yummy, but they taste… like oysters. I note the first one as “good but salty” and the second is “majorly fishy.” I have no clue which oyster is the more expensive one. And I am still starving.
Eat 3808 N. Williams Ave.
Miss Delta 3950 N. Mississippi Ave.
Ordering at Eat is a challenge. We know we want six oysters, but which kinds? Their names mean nothing to a neophyte like me. I am looking for an easy ordering system (good, better, best; tall, venti, grande) and instead I am confronted with monikers that sound like sections of London. “We’ll have three cheap kinds and three more expensive ones,” I order. I know nothing about oysters, even after tonight’s crash course. To me, they are but a conduit with which to eat sauce—like a tortilla chip, except slimier. The oysters at Eat are oyster eaters’ oysters, which is to say: served only with a wedge of lemon. Here, it’s all about the taste of the oyster. Wine connoisseurs will detect things like “oak” and “fruit” and, I
I need bread and therefore I eat chocolate. I don’t know who came up with the idea of putting bleu cheese into a truffle but he or she should be damn proud. I buy one pink grapefruit and two bleu cheese truffles with the intention of saving one for my boyfriend. Well, much like splitting the mushroom wontons, I quickly forget about my selflessness and instead finish all three chocolates before we even leave the joint. Hey, what can I say? I was starving.
The place is packed, especially for a Wednesday night in the midst of the greatest economic crisis most of us have ever witnessed. We wait for our appetizers for what seems like forever. Now, mind you, it’s late and all I’ve eaten since lunch are two wontons, one oyster and a spoonful of dipping sauce. When you’re starving, 40 minutes feels like 40 years. Our Captain’s Platter comes with all sorts of deep-fried goodies: oysters (again), shrimp, hush puppies and catfish. For good measure and added calories, we also order the Black-Eyed Pea Fritters with a jalapeño-blackeye-pea dipping sauce—a perfect combination of spicy, garlicky kick
Hey you! Yeah, you... You’re the only one reading this newspaper, ain’t ya?
Pix Patisserie 3808 N. Williams
Post Script This is what I learned: oysters are not very filling. On the next Appetizer Tour, I think we’ll need to diversify our portfolio, if you will. You know, to avoid crashing. To stabilize us. Bail us out. Because in this economy, you can’t put all your eggs in one oyster basket.
What are you doing Saturday, April 18th? Put down that iPhone, raise the horns, and get ready for the greatest day of your life: The Boise Neighborhood Spring Clean-up! Saturday, April 18 9am – 1pm (any time you can...) Unthank Park
Tobias Hogan and Ethan Powell, proprietors of Eat, hold up their daily speci al – fresh , delic ious oyste rs
For Those About to Clean. We Salute You. Cheryl Juetten
THE BOISE VOICE
Three-way oyster party
Or, “stimulating” the economy, (tee hee) um, like, one at a...oh, you know what I’m thinking... By Matt Howl “My boyfriend has a tattoo of Buddha on his chest. But it looks more like, um, ‘boy parts.’” Laura says staring down the barrel of her oyster shooter. “Speaking of…mmmm, these are delicious,” I reply, cupping my own oyster and down the hatch it goes. “Wow, that was meaty.” “I know.” “You guys, you guys…I’m totally not drunk,” says Claire, her outstretched hands knocking Laura’s drink into my lap. And so it begins. Equinox 830 N. Shaver St. Here’s the thing. My neighbors, Laura (also the editor of the Boise Voice) and her roommate, Claire, made the mistake of inviting me to join them for an evening of eating oysters. “Would I?” I shouted, “Hurray! Sexy times!” Oops. So, yeah. What Laura actually meant was an appetizer tour of Boise restaurants that serve oysters. An oyster crawl, if you will. Right. Still awkward. Fortunately, I pretended I was making a Borat joke, and none were the wiser. Ha! Oh wait, no one reads this, right? Anyway, we started off at Equinox which clearly inspires eaters to drink to the final days of the US Dollar. Spend ‘em here before they’re nothing but Weimar postcards. Laura, Claire, and I kicked off the evening with oyster shooters (natch). And I feel obliged to state that the first time you suck one down in front of ladies you don’t know all that well? Be prepared for the highly self-conscious moment that follows. Um. Yes. That was good. Did you think that was good? I did, too. Really, really good. Saltier than I expected. Fortunately, we quickly moved on to some of Equinox’s wild mushroom wontons. Perfectly fried. Crunchy, not heavy. Savory and stuffed with cheese and chives. Like a better class of comfort food, they satisfied and calmed without a whiff of Denny’s. My only complaint was there were five wontons and three of
us. And while I was trying to decide how to best share the last two, Laura jumped in ripping one wonton in half – with her dirty bare hands. Fortunately before I could protest, she ate both halves like a pig. Oink. Miss Delta 3950 N. Mississippi Ave. Let’s get one uncomfortable little fact out of the way. You’re not going to get amazing service at Miss Delta. You are going to get competent service that will be quickly overshadowed by scrumptious, hearty food served up hot and delicious in a swingin’ joint. If you’re looking for a happy little cloister of over-caffeinated sweater folders, I recommend the Gap. Laura, Claire and I sampled two pirate plates. The first was the awesomely-named “Captain’s Platter,” which sounds more like 84 ounces of truck stop slop that, should you actually finish it in under an hour, a grizzled waitress will waive the check (but not the tip, tight-ass) and take your picture, suitable for hanging in the adjoining Citgo men’s restroom “Wall of Fame.” Future truckers will fart out Paradise by the Dashboard Light to your powers of mastication. But tonight, I’m farting Walk on the Wild Side instead because, like a Mennonite praying to Mammon at the Mall of America, I find myself well outside my comfort zone as our conversation has ventured into the finer merits of a getting a Brazilian. Wax, that is. Swimming pools, movie stars. Wistfully, I wonder whatever happened to good ol’ Marilyn Chambers? I dunno. But back here at Miss Delta, the Captain’s Platter is piloting the S.S. Stimulus down the Congo to my heart of darkness because this succulent mix of oysters, shrimp, catfish and hush puppies has defeated our merry band. Way more tasty food than the three of us could ever finish for only twelve measly bucks. And in this economy? You best believe we ain’t complaining. Where our vegetarians at? For you our tummies ached as we soldiered on digging into the First Mate’s Plate of Black Eyed Pea Fritters. Hot vegetables times fried dough plus cheese dippin’s equals an explosion of savory tastes. My mouth is a Jihad
wn for his Sexy times indeed. Matt Howl is reno urant. resta ic publ a in g eatin best manners when
Photo of Food?
of flavor, and every infidel’s invited. Wait. Does that sound weird? And the truckers go, “Doo, doo doo, doo, doo doo doo, doo, doo doo, doo.” Okay. Time to go. As we walked out the door, I mouthed to our server, “Will you love me? Will you love me forever?” But she just stared right through me like I was Marlow’s ghost. En route to the next venue, I realize I’m getting a little drunk. Not enough to knock over someone’s drink, mind you. (Oh. Hey, Claire.) But certainly enough so I’m feeling, oh, I don’t know… “open to experimentation?” Eat 3808 N. Williams Ave. Eat is the perfect location for experimentation. They’re quickly becoming famous for their fresh bar of on-ice oyster specials. Not to mention an extensive listing of local and international absinthes. Madness and hot sauce await. We quickly ordered a half dozen assorted oysters on a platter of shaved ice. Raw and chilled. We were told their names, but our hands were already full with adorable 10 ounce beer mugs cooling our mouths from hot pepper sauce so we never even got out our notebooks. But each of the six beauties had a slightly different flavor, and they all tasted sumptuous and fresh.
“Sexy times!” And…apparently, you can only get away with saying that once in an evening. After the second time? We’re done here. Pix Patisserie 3808 N. Williams Fortunately we all needed a sweet to clense the palate from the savory. So the three of us stopped by Pix on the way home. What? No oyster chocolates? Okay then, we’ll have the blue cheese truffle. Whoa. That’s good. Let’s have another. I got an extra truffle for the lovely Mrs. Howl as payment for leaving my best girl home on a Wednesday night. Laura got an extra sweet for Mr. Laura but then she ate it for herself. Shh… don’t tell. Post Script After I got home to regale the lovely Mrs. Howl with details of our Oyster/Appetizer Tour, her immediate response was to ask why I spent the entire evening with two charming ladies sucking on oysters. Hmm. Yass… Indeed. Really, I merely talk a good game. It was all just amazingly delicious apps at cheap prices served up by the finest in the Boise neighborhood. Nothing happened, pervs. So long as you’re the kind of person who calls getting a Brazilian nothing.
THE BOISE VOICE
Grow Your Own!
Starting Your Own Home Garden Has Never Been Easier Want to learn more about garden design? Join landscape architect Beth Zauner for a series of four weekly workshops on planning a garden that works for your space. Participants will be provided with the tools, knowledge, instruction and assistance to produce a residential Landscape Plan. The resulting drawing may be used as a master plan to be installed over the years by the homeowner or for obtaining a professional construction bids. Beth Zauner is a licensed landscape architect with 15 years of design experience in the
Pacific Northwest. She has a BS in Ornamental Horticulture from Auburn University and a Masters of Landscape Architecture from Louisiana State. Classes will be limited to 10 participants. Location and time to be determined. Workshop fee is $220, and the a kit containing the tools you’ll need is $30. To secure registration, a non-refundable deposit of $50 is required. The balance is due at the first session. Please contact Beth Zauner at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or to register.
Gardening Class Schedule: Session I: Saturday, June
Session III: Saturday, June
• The Process and Production
• Bubble Diagrams
Session II: Saturday, June Base Map:
• Form, Scale, Color & Texture • Garden Themes
By Rita Traut-Kabeto
The little daisies in the lawn insist on blooming still despite the eager efforts of the man in gardening twill. He mows and cuts and feeds the grass, spreads killers out to catch whatever doesn’t look like blades or isn’t green to match. Yet in that boring sea of grass pop up, to spite the man the little daisies, white and pure and proudly hold their stance. And as with people who don’t like what’s different, other, new the man reacts with his intent of keeping lawns just green and never realizes that in contrast lies the beauty and that his lawn looks only great when visited by daisies.
Congratulations to Paige Coleman, former chairperson of the Boise Neighborhood Association, on her new position as the executive director of the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods! We’d like to recognize and thank her for her unwavering dedication and longtime commitment to this community.
• Site Analysis
Session IV: Saturday, June 27
Good luck in your new job!
• Use/Activity Lists
Planting Plan and List
– From her Boise neighbors
• Plant Lists
• Finishing Design Touches • Final Landscape Plan
BOISE NEIGHBORHOOD BOUNDARIES
THE BOISE VOICE
FRESH! - Cont. from page 1 these hard times and live healthier at the same time – not just for eating better, but also for the physical activity it involves. It’s also worth mentioning a local ing better, but also for the physical activity it involves. It’s also worth mentioning a local produce market in our neighborhood. It’s called Cherry Sprout and is located at 722 N. Sumner Street (phone 503-445-4959). This market appears to be open to local input because it sent out a questionnaire, asking the following: What do you wish we had? If we decided to stay open until 8pm would you shop later? Would you choose organic over conventional produce? And Speaking of Fresh...an old business has set up new shop in our neighborhood and it, too, puts emphasis on fresh: pasta, some produce and flowers, breads and cheeses, cured and fresh meats, house-made sausages and pâtés, among many other items. Pastaworks opened recently in the new Mississippi Avenue Lofts building at 4212 N. Mississippi. In her interview with Leslie Stahl, Alice Waters mentioned an organization called Slow Food USA, which seeks to create dramatic and lasting changes in the food system. It attempts to reconnect Americans with the people, traditions, plants, animals and fertile soils and waters that produce our food. It inspires a transformation in food policy, production practices and market forces to ensure equity, sustainability and pleasure in the food we eat. This organization has its roots in Italy, but the US chapter was founded by Peter Degarmo, owner and operator of Pastaworks. For more about this organization, visit slowfoodusa.org.
INTERN - Cont. from page 1 “This is opening up and supporting the youth in the neighborhood,” says Endicott. “It gives them an opportunity to learn job skills and to develop relationships that could last a lifetime, and hopefully open doors for them, whether it’s just learning how you get a job, how you retain that job, or just to earn some money working in your neighborhood—but also maybe they want to open up a business, or they want to do their own venture, or start a nonprofit, and they can learn behind the scenes skills of how to go about doing that.” Participation is crucial for a program like this to work, and there are a few different ways this can look. One benchmark for success would be 100 percent involvement from local businesses. If the capacity for an intern isn’t there, they can also sponsor what Endicott calls a “mentor luncheon,” where every Wednesday the youth have lunch with a business owner who talks to them about their operation and how they make it work, and the youth get to ask questions and share their own aspirations. If you’re not a business owner, you can help out by making a contribution, the entirety of which goes to the youth’s wages. “It’s all free job training and mentoring,” says Endicott. “It’s a really great opportunity. Some of the youth who participated last year have already stepped up and said they would like to participate again this year.” The program is open for youth ages 13-17 who live in the geographical boundaries of our neighborhood. Interns are paid $8 an hour and work between 20-30 hours per week. The wages are paid by a fund that is sustained by contributions from local businesses and individual donors. Business owners interested in hearing more details or joining the project are invited to contact Shane Endicott at shane@ rebuildingcenter.org. Youth interested in learning more about the program or applying for a position should contact Leigh Rappaport at 503-797-7224 or email@example.com.
Managing Editor Laura Parisi Layout Editor Matt Howl Contributors Molly Chun, Sha’Quoya Hillman, Apricot Irving, Leightreona Frazier, Lenishia Pryer, Leonard Roach, Tiffany Smith Mark Bernard Steck, Rita Traut-Kabeto Photographers Scott Batchelar, Cheryl Juetten Ad Sales Mary Cadien, Martha Wright The Boise Voice is written and produced by an amazing and talented group of volunteers to whom we are ever-indebted. If you’d like to help out with the newspaper, or if you’ve got feedback for us, please contact us at boisevoice@gmail. com, or send a letter to: The Boise Voice 3903 N. Mississippi Ave. Portland, OR 97227 Rights to articles are retained by the author. Opinions of the authors do not necessarily reﬂect the ofﬁcial positions of the Boise Neighborhood Association. Due to space constraints, the Boise Voice reserves the right to edit when publishing letters.
Get Involved Locally!
The Boise Neighborhood Association is a local nonproﬁt organization dedicated to enhancing the livability of our community and acting as liaison between the neighborhood, local government, schools, businesses, churches and nonproﬁt groups in Boise. We provide, encourage and facilitate an open process whereby all members of the neighborhood may involve themselves, or be heard on the issues, affairs and concerns of the neighborhood. To meet these livability objectives, the BNA aims to address the following issues: 1. Citizen Participation 2. Education 3. Economic/Job Development 4. Health Services 5. Housing and Physical Environment 6. Law and Justice, Community Safety 7. Social Services 8. Recreation 9. Honoring Diversity of Culture 10. Transportation The BNA welcomes all renters, homeowners, property owners, businesses of all cultures, incomes and backgrounds to participate in strengthening our community. Every second Monday of the month, we hold a Community Meeting to learn more about each other and the values and concerns we have. Each meeting, there are at least two informative presentations and a time for visiting with neighbors over snacks provided by a local business. Childcare, translation and transportation services are available with one week’s advance notice to allow for arrangements. Please see the map on the back page for information about the BNA boundaries.
THE BOISE VOICE
Letters to the Boise Voice In the last issue of the Boise Voice, we ran a story entitled “Bark for a Park,” in which the author, dog-owner and neighbor Nicole Dobrow, wrote about how many neighbors use Unthank Park as an off-leash dog run. She interviewed neighbors who have safety concerns about off-leash dogs as well as dog owners who say the park is the only place they feel comfortable letting their dogs run. Her conclusion: Boise needs a separate, off-leash dog area. After publication, we received the following letters from neighbors: Dear Editor: I am a new arrival to the Boise neighborhood and received the most recent version of the paper. I am particularly dismayed by ‘Heather’s remark (the non-law-abiding mom) and the author’s dismissive reporting regarding Heather’s responsibilities; just because she has a child does not mean that she gets to pick and choose which laws she obeys. The stop signs around the park, does her child excuse her from obeying those laws? And what gives her the right to endanger other children? I bet she wants people to abide by the laws that protect her child, does she think it’s okay
for people to use drugs in the parkhaving been attacked by dogs before I would rather a drug user than an unleashed dog around my children because dogs are more unpredictable. Lastly, there are scores of mothers who have babies and also own/use leashes, and frankly the article does little to demand accountability for these arrogant persons who think that they are exceptions to the laws that have been put in place for a reason. There are legal avenues for residences to go about getting a dog park and until that park is in place they are required to obey the laws that exist. Where’s the report about that? –CC James
Nicole Dobrow responds: “People should explore legal avenues to get a dog park – that is what I was hoping my article would encourage.” Dear Editor: I found your article on the idea of an off-leash dog park in our neighborhood very interesting. However, it misses a very important and crucial point—responsible dog ownership doesn’t begin and end with obeying a city leash law. Having your dog on a leash does not make you a responsible dog owner (sound redundant? It is meant to be). Some of the most responsible dog owners I know use Unthank Park regularly as a place to exercise and socialize their dogs every morning before there are children using the facilities—and they all let their dogs off their leashes, which is crucial to a dog behaving in their normal (pack) mentality. There are rarely any incidents. I have been a resident here for over 11 years, a dog owner for over 9 of those. I use Unthank Park every morning practically, and I never have my dog, Angel, on a leash. One of the primary facets of responsible dog ownership, perhaps more than having your dog on leash, is picking up after your dog! Carrying a bag and removing his/her feces from the public ways are mandatory–and I’ve noticed a lot more dog poop on the sidewalks, streets, parkways and public grounds–obviously from the greater number of dogs in this neighborhood. If you have your dog on a leash, but you don’t bother (or feel it necessary) to pick up your dog’s crap, you are
not responsible. I see so much more poop in places I would think obvious that must be picked up—in the BoiseEliot school playground, for example. If dog owners aren’t responsible about picking up after their dog, then they can’t be responsible about using an off-leash dog park. Also—dog owners who don’t want their dogs to socialize and sniff other dogs don’t understand that that is what dogs do naturally—they are from a pack mentality, and it’s the way they interact with each other. Having the dog restrained by a leash totally changes this dynamic and can actually lead to more “aggressive” behavior between dogs. If people don’t want their dogs to socialize with other dogs, then they probably shouldn’t have a dog. An off-leash dog park brings the necessity of proper socialization skills between dogs and their owners! And it’s something a lot of dog owners here aren’t ready (or willing) to handle!! –Rob Mareneck Hey! Do you want to join the conversation? Do you have an opinion or concern you’d like expressed in this paper? Send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org or Boise Voice, c/o the Boise Neighborhood Association, 3903 N. Mississippi Avenue, Portland, OR 97227. We reserve the right to edit for length and clarity.
Dog Park? Yes, please.
Boise Voice April 2009