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Portland Parks & Recreation, partners present New Portlanders Cultural Celebration & Family Day

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Multicultural food, music, dancing and much more, part of Portland Sunday Parkways

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POSTED MAY 10, 2016

(Portland, OR) –

Multicultural food, music, dancing and much more, part of Portland Sunday Parkways

Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R), Parks for New Portlanders, and other valued partners present the New Portlanders Cultural Celebration & Family Day on Sunday, May 15, 2016, at PP&R’s Bloomington Park. All are welcome to the free, multicultural community gathering to celebrate people new to Portland – and to the United States. The New Portlanders celebration is a key part of the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT)’s east Portland Sunday Parkways, the first of this year’s popular car-free events through Portland’s neighborhoods.

  • What: New Portlanders Cultural Celebration & Family Day
  • Where: PP&R’s Bloomington Park, SE 100th Avenue and Steele Street
  • When: Sunday, May 15, 11am-3pm

Portland teens of Yap Islander heritage (in the western Pacific) relaxing after a traditional warrior chant and dance.
Photo courtesy of Colored Pencils Art and Culture Council and Portland Parks & Recreation, Portland, Oregon.

Opening Ceremony takes place at noon. Enjoy food vendors and raffle prizes, Zumba, soccer games. Celebrate with live music and multi-cultural dances from nearly a dozen of Portland’s refugee and immigrant communities. Part of east Portland’s Sunday Parkways. 

Special guests include Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury, City Commissioner Nick Fish, and dozens of immigrant and refugee community leaders.

“We aim to foster a sense of belonging for all communities, particularly for those that have traditionally been underrepresented,” says Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, whose recently proposed budget for fiscal year 2016/17 includes ongoing funding for the Parks for New Portlanders program (pending City Council approval). “Supporting immigrant and refugee families enriches our community, and I look forward to a vibrant and fun New Portlanders Cultural Celebration & Family Day with families from around the world.”

“One in eight Portlanders was born in another country,” notes Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz, herself an immigrant who came to Portland thirty years ago.  “Parks are vital community gathering places. This event is another step towards inclusion of all Portlanders in enjoyment of our shared parks and public spaces.”

The goal of the festival and of Parks for New Portlanders is to connect Portland Parks & Recreation programs, services and activities with people new to the Rose City – and to the USA. 

“Embracing a diverse group of immigrants and refugees instills a sense of belonging and connection to the community,” says Mike Abbaté, Director of Portland Parks & Recreation. “Our parks and recreational opportunities are for all Portlanders, in the hopes they thrive in and enjoy their new home.  It is a key program to ensure that PP&R services and spaces are welcoming and accessible to communities of color, new immigrants and refugees.”

The Parks for New Portlanders program hosts events such as the Portland World Cup Soccer tournament in the summer and the Intercultural Basketball Tournament in the fall.  These sporting and cultural celebrations are many people’s first experience with their city government, and help new Portlanders access Portland Parks & Recreation and other City services. 

The New Portlanders Cultural Celebration & Family Day is made possible by

  • The Parks for New Portlanders program
  • Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI)’s New Portlanders Program
  • Citywide Teen Services
  • Portland Parks & Recreation
  • Sunday Parkways – brought to you by the Portland Bureau of Transportation.
  • Sponsors Organized to Assist Refugees (SOAR)

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