Sellwood Moreland Improvement League

April 2019 SMILE Newsletter

SMILE -- "The Neighbor"


Annual SMILE Board election on May 1


The annual SMILE May Board Election will be at the SMILE General Meeting on May 1st, with all four officer positions up for election to a one-year term, and with at least four of the eight at-large Board positions up for election to a two-year term. Current SMILE President Joel Leib asks that anyone interested in running for a seat, or is interested in serving on the SMILE Nominating Committee, get in touch with him soon. A message may be left at 503/234-3570.



SMILE April General Meeting updates plans for “Moreland Woods”


As part of the SMILE General Meeting, on Wednesday, April 3, 7:30-9 p.m., the ad-hoc SMILE Moreland Woods Committee will report on the latest developments in the neighborhood hope of establishing a public park on the Portland Memorial land just north of the Mausoleum and just south of Llewellyn Elementary School. This discussion has been postponed from March. Elizabeth Milner, Chair of the committee, says, “The owners of Moreland Woods now have big plans for the property: A new parking lot, a new cemetery under the mature trees, and the potential for a trail connecting the neighborhood to Oaks Bottom. What do you think? Please join us at the SMILE General Meeting to hear more details about the new plan for the Woods and to provide your feedback. We want to hear from you!” For more information about this ongoing neighborhood project, go online to –



“Sundae in the Park” Committee meets “second Wednesdays, 7:30 pm”


If you are interested in helping plan and direct the largest neighborhood celebration in Inner Southeast, SMILE’s “Sundae in the Park” on the first Sunday in August (this year, it’s August 4), you’re invited to attend the next meeting of the SMILE “Sundae in the Park” Committee, meeting on the second Wednesday evening of each month through July at SMILE Station, 7:30 p.m. The committee membership has doubled from 3 to 6.  This year, the event will probably be just noon until 5 p.m., as it has been for most of its history, because the Portland Parks Department, which asked several years ago to become part of it with an evening Movie in the Park, has just decided it will not have a movie after Sundae in the Park this year after all.



SMILE “Buy a Brick” fundraiser – Part 2

The SMILE Station “brick pathway fundraiser” concluded in early August, with over two hundred bricks “sold” in the pathway on the front lawn of the building, at S.E. 13th at Tenino Street in Sellwood. The “sold” bricks were inscribed in place shortly afterward, and whether you “bought” one or not, you’re invited to walk the bricks and read the inscriptions! The inscribing firm intends to return to correct any misspellings, and is willing to inscribe some more bricks. If you didn’t buy a brick – or would like to buy another one – it turns out that it is not too late to honor a loved one, a family member, a pet, or even yourself, by “buying a brick”. The brick sale has restarted, and there are still bricks “for sale”.  If you’re interested, simply go online at – – and buy your brick, and enter its inscription, there.



SMILE seeks more renter input from the community

Renters by their nature are often somewhat transitory, and sometimes are more interested in pursuing their profession than interacting with the neighborhood they live in. But, at the February SMILE General Meeting, a SMILE Board Member who IS an apartment renter, Tyler Janzen, moderated an extensive discussion of how to attract the attention of, and interact with, the renters who rapidly are becoming a substantial percentage of the population of Sellwood and Westmoreland as more and more apartment buildings are in progress and being completed. If you are a renter, consider coming to a SMILE General Meeting (first Wednesday evening each month, 7:30-9 p.m.) and/or a SMILE Board Meeting (third Wednesday evening each month, 7:30-9 p.m.), and learn about the issues the neighborhood confronts, and the services the neighborhood association provides – all run by volunteer neighbors who are committed to the neighborhood they live in, either permanently or temporarily! All meetings take place at SMILE Station, S.E. 13th at Tenino Street, one block south of Tacoma (the “Sellwood Bridge street”).


Sellwood’s “Summer Concerts” now run by a SMILE committee


Jim Friscia, a former SMILE Board Member who for many years has been spearheading the widely enjoyed Summer Concerts in Sellwood, that are part of the Portland Parks’ “Summer Free For All” events, reports that changes in the program at the city level have changed the rules and opportunities for local business sponsors of the concerts, and increased the need for public participation in the funding if the concerts on July Monday evenings are to continue. Consequently, at Friscia’s request, his independent concert planning and fundraising group is now an official ad-hoc committee of SMILE, and under SMILE’s 501c3 nonprofit status, public contributions may again be directed specifically to this concert series by making tax-deductible contributions to the committee. This committee now needs interested local residents to volunteer to join and help plan the future Sellwood summer concerts.



Attend a SMILE meeting!


You’re invited to attend SMILE meetings every month at SMILE Station, an historic fire station now owned by the Sellwood Moreland Improvement League neighborhood association. The March General Meeting is at 7:30 pm on Wednesday, April 3rd – and the regular monthly Board meeting is scheduled for 7:30 pm on Wednesday, April 17th. SMILE Station is on the southeast corner of S.E. 13th at Tenino, a block south of Tacoma Street, at 8210 S.E. 13th in Sellwood. Meeting agendas beforehand, and draft meeting minutes afterward, are posted online at –



Rent SMILE Station – or the historic church!


SMILE is the renting agent for the historic and picturesque Oaks Pioneer Church, on S.E. Spokane Street at Grand, just north of the Sellwood Bridge – overlooking the Willamette River. The church is available at very attractive rates for weddings, memorials, christenings, and other events. In addition, SMILE owns its own building – SMILE Station, S.E. 13th and Tenino, at 8210 S.E. 13th – which is also for rent at very attractive rates for business meetings, parties, wedding receptions, and special events; it will seat up to 100 and has tables, chairs, and an industrial kitchen facility. See more at: For information on renting either building for your event, call 503/234-3570, and leave a message for Lori Fyre; she will return your call. To research Oaks Pioneer Church and what it offers, visit its own Internet website –




Community volunteers serve on SMILE committees, too!


SMILE is also looking for neighbors to serve on one or more of SMILE’s committees, including:

  • Transportation Committee
  • Land-Use Committee
  • Stewardship of Natural Amenities Committee (“SNAC”)
  • Sundae in the Park Committee
  • History Committee
  • Emergency Preparedness Committee
  • Crime Prevention Committee
  • Friends of Sellwood Community Center
  • Historic Pioneer Church Committee
  • SMILE Station Committee
  • Finance Committee
  • Communications Committee
  • Various ad-hoc committees as needed

Attend a SMILE meeting, and find out more about what we do!



Websites for Sellwood-Westmoreland


SMILE offers two complementary websites as a resource for the neighborhood. One is the neighborhood’s blog: – posting neighborhood news, and regularly updated. A second website contains SMILE’s agendas, minutes, announcements, documents, resources, and much ongoing and regularly-updated neighborhood reference information – it’s online at: In addition, SMILE maintains an informational website for the Oaks Pioneer Church on Spokane Street at the east end of the Sellwood Bridge, for which it is the renting agent: For more on SMILE Station:



Who SMILE members are


SMILE members are EVERYONE living in, working in, or owning property in, Sellwood and/or Westmoreland – unless they specifically exempt themselves. All SMILE members are welcome to volunteer for any of the SMILE committees of particular interest to them.



SMILE is a 501c3 nonprofit


Of the 95 recognized neighborhood associations in Portland, SMILE is one of the few to be authorized by the IRS as a nonprofit “501c3” organization. This means that donations made to SMILE are tax-deductible – and are very welcome!





SMILE 2018-19 Board election results!

At the May 2, 2018, Annual General Public Meeting, SMILE's annual Board election was held. The results were:

Officers (1-year terms):

President: Joel Leib

Vice President : Gail Hoffnagle

Treasurer:  Pat Hainley

Secretary: Eric Norberg


At-Large Board Seats (2-year terms):







Bob Burkholder

Tyler Janzen  [elected to fill an unexpired term on May 2, 2018]

Kim Borcherding

Kevin Palmer



Elaine O'Keefe

Elizabeth Milner

Julie Currin

Simon Fulford


Portland, Oregon 97202

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