Friendly Area Neighborhood Newsletter - April 2009
Things are Greening Up at Adams
By Barbara Dumesnil, FAN resident

Adams Elementary, the Friendly neighborhood school, is making a mark for sustainability among Eugene schools. In February Adams became the first 4J elementary school to be awarded Oregon Green School Merit status. The award recognizes Adams for its waste reduction and successful composting program, recycling and energy conservation practices, and for providing assistance to other schools.

In March Adams was named a finalist for a $100,000 renewable energy grant from EWEB. We plan to make Adams the first school in the Eugene school district to provide a portion of its energy from on-site solar panels. We'll install a rooftop photovoltaic system to generate electricity and a solar thermal system to provide hot water. By partnering with FAN, the University of Oregon and Lane Community College, we'll show our children and the larger community that a brighter energy future is possible. All EWEB Greenpower ratepayers will be eligible to vote for one of the finalists. The winner to be announced at the EWEB Earth Day Celebration on April 18th.

Also in March. Adams was selected for a City of Eugene Neighborhood Matching Grant for the construction of a wheelchair accessible vegetable garden and outdoor classroom. Construction is well under way—come by and check it out. All are welcome to help out during Adams Garden Work Parties on April 18th and 19th and April 25th and 26th. We'll install irrigation systems, build garden boxes and a trellis. There's plenty to do! Contact Barbara at 342-8127 for more information.
Friendly Farmers update
By Robin Onaclea, FAN resident

Did you know we have at least four beekeepers in the neighborhood and over twenty people raising chickens?

The Eugene Friendly Neighborhood Farmers group now has 87 members. This online forum has helped many neighbors to network and connect about gardening, raising chickens, beekeeping and organic and permaculture practices. It has allowed people with similar interests to find one another.

The website has a place where neighbors can promote events like backyard garden workshops, plant swaps and potlucks. The online discussion forum has been active with people discussing baby chicks, native plants, spring garden preparation and good sources for materials. The Eugene Friendly Neighborhood Farmers website can be found at
Stability, sustainability and you
By Carlos Barrera, FAN Co-Chair

For some time now, we have been hearing about global climate change and how it may affect us. Though there was some doubt in the beginning as to what was causing it, there is no doubt that it is happening and that the rate of warming is accelerating. The effects of this warming are likely to be major. Some people may think that a few degrees of warming are no big deal. If we were talking about the weather, then they would be right. But when we talk about global climate, we are talking about the average temperature of the entire Earth over an entire year, and in that context, a small change can have a big effect. Though the direct effects of this change are hard to predict, scientists are saying that we may see dry areas get drier and wet areas get wetter and that this process likely will disrupt agriculture world wide. Rising sea levels and unstable weather patterns may affect the transportation sector, making it harder to import or export foods and other products. In the Pacific North West, we may see less snow pack in the mountains in the winter and thus less water in our rivers in the summer. Less water for drinking, farming, and fueling our hydroelectric dams.

It's no wonder that the governments all around the world are holding meetings to try and agree on a plan to deal with global climate change and its' effects. But we don't have to wait for the politicians to figure something out, and some of your local community leaders are taking action. Several groups are encouraging people to start growing their own food, devise ways to store rainwater, and encouraging people to adopt sustainable practices so that we can do our part to try and slow, and eventually stop, this warming trend. The Neighborhood Leaders Council Committee on Sustainability is working to make available many tools and resources to help residents prepare and adapt to any change that may come our way. Watch for announcements of resources in your neighborhood newsletter.

The City of Eugene is also trying to address the problem of global climate change by installing more mass transit, bike lanes, promoting recycling, and altering building codes to promote denser housing near shopping districts so that people will find it easier to walk instead of driving their cars.

There are many ways to address this problem and we will probably need all of them. Just as we all breathe the same air, global climate change will affect everyone, and it will take all of us working together to stabilize our climate so that we can all live comfortably into the future. So learn about what you can do to live sustainably, take heart, and take action. The Friendly Area Neighborhood Association's Sustainability Committee is here to help.
Spray park may replace wading pool
By Nancy Ellen Locke, FAN Board member

At the end of 2009, State health regulations require that wading pools either be closed or retro-fitted with re-circulating and disinfecting systems, signage, non-entanglement, and more. This would be cost prohibitive both in capital costs and ongoing operations to retro-fit our aging wading pools in this manner. The logical solution is to convert these well-loved spaces to spray play; creating fun and interactive water play with no standing water, no additional chemicals, and no required staffing. It also provides an extended use-season of the facility, is fully accessible for a mix of user ages and abilities, and allows water conservation techniques through creative and conscientious design.

Following the recent success of the Fairmount Park wading pool conversion to spray play, spearheaded & funded entirely by neighbors, the next conversion is scheduled for Washington Park. On Thursday, Feb 19, Parks Planning staff in partnership with the Eugene Parks Foundation hosted the first Washington Park Spray Play public workshop. An intimate group of very engaged and informed neighbors enjoyed live blue grass music and refreshments followed by an energetic discussion of park issues and ideas that will help us move forward.

The Washington Park Spray Play project is earmarked to receive $75,000 in SDC funding that will be matched by $75,000 to $150,000 of private fundraising through the Eugene Parks Foundation. If fundraising throughout 2009 is successful, construction is scheduled to begin summer 2010. The second workshop to review a draft design concept will be held in mid-April.

More information about this project can be found on the Eugene Parks Foundation website or by contacting project manager, Emily Proudfoot, at 682-4915.
This is a picture of three magnolia buds on a branch. The first bud is just preparing to open.
Magnolia buds preparing to bloom. Photo by Greg Giesy
Bigger isn't better when it comes to carbon footprints
Submitted by Phyllis Fisher, FAN Resident

Interested in a free Household Climate Consultation today to save money and curb your climate impact?

Chilly days sent your heating bill through the roof? Curious what your food choices have to do with global warming? Want to know how your yard can absorb, instead of emit, greenhouse gases?

If any of these statements apply to you, consider scheduling a free household climate consultation with a neighbor who has become a Master Climate Consultant.  Call or email the University of Oregon Climate Leadership Initiative at 346-1906 or today and arrange for a visit.

What does a household climate consultation involve? When you call or email the Climate Leadership Initiative to schedule the consultation and tell us what you’re most interested in, we’ll send two Climate Masters to your home to tailor a plan for reducing your personal and household greenhouse gas emissions. The Climate Masters will arrive brimming with resources and free energy saving devices for your home that will cut your bills and your emissions immediately, like compact florescent lightbulbs and easy to install insulation and power strips, donated by Jerry’s Home Improvement Center.

No gimmicks, no catch, and no cost to you. In fact, you’re likely to learn ways save money by making some simple changes.

Contact the Climate Leadership Initiative at 346-1906 or with any questions.
Friendlies offer workshops
By Barbara Sklar

On March 17th, 21 Friendly neighbors braved blustery, cold weather to learn about starting seedlings for their vegetable gardens. A newly built cold frame to give our soon to be sprouting seedlings the light that they need was also on display. Have you noticed all those raised beds and front yard vegetable gardens appearing in our neighborhood? Even the Obama family, has joined the grass to gardens revolution, by making space for vegetables on the White House lawn.

The Friendlies, meet monthly to think together about sustainability and building community. We will continue to offer neighborhood workshops in the coming months. April brings a workshop on composting , including how to build a compost bin and in June we’ll meet at Washington Park Community Center for a workshop on bicycle safety. Come join us!


On Sunday, April 26th from 2-4 p.m. master composter Tom Bettman will teach us everything we wanted to know about composting but were afraid to ask. There is a lot to learn about how to make (unsmelly) “hot” compost whose result is a rich, wormy, crumbly, nutritious soil full of the beneficial bacteria, microorganisms and critters that make our gardens/houseplants grow. We will also learn how to build our own compost bin. To register and for more information call Rachel at 343-2770.


GEARS (Greater Eugene Area Riders) will be offering a workshop May 8th (6-9 p.m.) at Roosevelt Middle School on bicycle safety. This class is recommended for adults and children above age 14. “It is designed to give cyclists the confidence they need to ride safely and legally in traffic or on the trail.” Can you imagine the difference it could make to get our kids to commute on bicycles to school? Not only would there be less congestion, there would be less carbon monoxide (and dioxide) in the air. It also gives our kids a sense of responsibility about the planet as well as some good healthy exercise!

GEARS follows this workshop up with six hours of riding instruction the following day (May 9th, 9-3) The workshop costs $5.00 or $10.00 if attending both days. Sign up at

On May 10thth The Native Plant Society of Oregon offers a tour of many native gardens – three in the Friendly neighborhood. (See article on native plants)


Traffic Skills 101 for Kids and Parents. This GEARS class is designed for kids ages 5-13. It will be held at Washington Park Community Center on Sunday, June 28th from 1-4 p.m. (Thank you F.A.N. for sponsoring this event!) It’s a great way to celebrate school being out and the start of a safe and active summer. For more information and/or to register call Barbara at 687-6879 or e-mail A small fee will be charged to cover the teacher’s instruction fees.
Musical Help Wanted!!

Friendly Area Neighborhood Picnic in search of a good local bands willing to play a free gig on Sunday, July 26th in Washington Park. Great community exposure! Please contact either:

Bernie Corrigan at: Carlos Barrera at:
Letters to the Editor
Stadium serves students, community

Dear Editor,

Thankyou for supporting the efforts being taken to "Save Civic Stadium" ( This historic stadium is of course home to the Ems baseball team. I wanted to let the community know that the South Eugene High School Varsity Baseball Team also plays all their home games at the stadium! The high school baseball season starts early, at the end of March games are being played at Civic. These are free, for the community to attend games. The main entrance gate is open along the third baseline. So please come to a game and support South Eugene Baseball and Civic Stadium!

Schedule of SEHS varsity baseball home games @ Civic Stadium:

Wednesday, March 25th at 1:00pm
Friday, March 27th at 1:00pm
Monday, March 30th at 4:00pm
Tuesday, March 31st at 4:00pm
Thursday, April 6th at 4:00pm
Tuesday, April 14th at 4:00pm
Saturday, April 25th at 12:00 pm (Double-Header)
Tuesday, April 28th at 4:00pm
Saturday, May 2nd at 12:00pm (Double-Header)
Tuesday, May 12th at 4:00 pm

If the team gets in the playoffs there shall be more games. Hope you'll enjoy family-friendly baseball at Civic Stadium .


-Bob Becker

The Friendly Area Neighborhood Newsletter would like to hear from you! You can send your comments, suggestions, ponderings, ideas, complaints, or reflections in two ways:


US Mail

Friendly Area Neighbors
c/o Neighborhood Program
99 W. 10th Avenue
Eugene, OR 97401

Please limit your letters to between 150 and 200 words. Past issues of this newsletter are available online along with other information on our website:
Amazon path improvements coming this summer
Information provided by Ruth Inoz, City of Eugene, Public Works Engineering Intern

The Amazon Path project will rehabilitate/reconstruct major portions of the Amazon Shared Use Path from 19th Ave to 31st Ave. The City plans to conduct this project in July and August of 2009, while the 4J schools are on summer break. During construction major sections of the path will be closed. The project is currently in the design phase and therefore construction phasing and scheduling have not been determined. It will be our intent to keep path closures as short as possible, but construction will significantly impact path uses this coming summer.

For more information please contact staff by email at
Annual garage sale for FAN
By Rick Grosscup, FAN Board member

The 2nd annual Friendly Neighborhood Garage Sale will occur Friday, July 24th through Sunday, July 26th. Last year saw 47 households participating, and this year promises more. With ten of last year's participants offering to chip in to make it happen, we will again offer signage, maps to seekers of garage sale goodies (we have an excellent neighborhood reputation for good garage sales), recycling of what you do not sell before the picnic, and more. This year we are asking for a $5 donation towards expenses not covered by the neighborhood.

If you would like to particpate in putting it on, or if you would like to participate, email

Editor's Note (05/04/09): If you would like to participate in the FAN Garage Sale, please contact the event organizer, Andrew, at
Native plants
By Barbara Sklar, FAN resident

The native plants in our own backyards help to connect us to the place where we live. They are unique to our region and give us the opportunity in a small way to be caretakers of nature. Once established (in the right soil and light) they take care of themselves and thrive. They are quietly beautiful. They offer homes to our native insects, birds and wildlife with no additional care from us humans, except, of course, for our admiration. Each year as the pink currants begin to bloom in my backyard I welcome back the rufous hummingbird which feeds on its nectar. I watch the tiny leaves of Douglas spirea unfold among the bare branches of winter. A community of camas begins to sprout from the wet mucky clay of my backyard. Who would have believed any plant could call this seasonal swamp its home?

Come admire and learn more about native plants on Sunday, May 10th from 12-5. Eight private homes – three in the Friendly neighborhood will be on the tour as well as four public settings. For more information visit the Emerald Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Oregon website at, or contact the Native Gardening Awareness Program at

Finally, are you interested in getting together to place a large, wholesale, bulk order of native plants through a local nursery? If so, give me a call at 687-6879 and we can talk. Happy Spring!
FAN general meeting April 23rd
By Bernie Corrigan

The annual Spring general meeting of the Friendly Area Neighbors (FAN) will be held Thursday, April 23rd from 7:00 to 9:00 PM at the Washington Park Cottage at 2025 Washington Street.

The FAN April General Meeting will feature appearances by Jan Wostman to tell us about the West Eugene Coalition and by Al Urquhart to discuss the history of the Friendly Area Neighborhood.

Please plan on attending. It's a great way to stay informed and meet your neighbors!
College Hill Reservoir Access
By Greg Giesy, FAN Board

Over the past few years a sub-committee of the FAN executive committee known as FANCH has worked with the Eugene Water and Electric Board to keep the roof of the College Hill Reservoir open to the public. One of the key pieces to this task was that equal access for all our citizens be designed and built as part of the overall plan.

FANCH and EWEB have agreed on an ADA access path plan to the reservoir and have gone after a City of Eugene Matching Grant to pay for most of the materials. Most of the labor will be provided by neighborhood volunteers to cover our side of the matching grant. EWEB will be providing the engineered plans and the railings for this project.

We have received good news the Neighborhood Matching Grants Departmental Advisory Committee (DAC) has recommended the College Hill Reservoir Path project for funding.

The DAC recommendations will go before the Eugene City Council on April 13th for final approval. If our project is approved by City Council we will be trying to install the path this spring.

If you are interested in volunteering to help on this project please phone or email Greg Giesy at 687-1858 or

We do not have dates and work schedules yet. This is a project that will take a building permit but please notify us of your interest as soon as possible and we will try to schedule things so that you can be involved.
Visual clear zones promote neighborhood safety.
Submitted by Nancy Ellen Locke, FAN Board member. Information provided by the City of Eugene

The City of Eugene has established visual clear zones at all intersections to help people approaching an intersection see each other clearly. The zone incluces an area on the street side of the property line (within the public right-of-way) and an area behind the property line (on private property).

This article describes the location of the visual clear zone and limitations on visual obstructions (such as fences, shrubs and trees) within the zone. It is the property owner’s responsibility to maintain the visual clear zone to code standards. This includes the portion located on private property as the portion in the adjacent public right-of-way. For more information, call (541) 682-4821.

-Street intersections with curbs

The visual clear zone lies between the property line and the curb line and is L-shaped with legs of equal length. Each leg is 35 feet long measured from the intersection point of the curb lines when extended. Maximum height of all vegetation within this area is 18 inches above the crown of the adjacent roadway.

-Street intersections without curbs

The visual clear zone is semicircular and the center of the semicircle is the private property corner. The distance measured from the property corner to the edge of the semicircle is 25 feet. The zone extends from property line to property line. Maximum height of all vegetation within this area is 18 inches above the crown of the street.

-Alley/bike path intersections with curbs

The visual clear zone is a 15-foot-long rectangle lying between the curb and the private property line. The area is measured from the alley or bike path along the property line. Maximum vegetation height is 18 inches above the curb.

-Alley/bike path intersections without curbs

The visual clear zone is a quarter-circle with the center of the circle at the property corner. The distance from the corner to the edge of the circle is 15 feet. Maximum vegetation height is 18 inches above the street.

-At street intersections

On private property, the visual clear zone is triangular-shaped. To establish end points, measure 15 feet along each property line, beginning at the property corner closest to the intersection. Connect the two end points with an imaginary line to form a triangle. The zone must be kept free of all visual obstructions (fences, shrubs, etc.) between 2 1/2 feet and 9 feet above the curb line. Where curbs do not exist, the height is measured from the crown of the street.


To keep visual zones clear and to protect traffic, pedestrians and bicyclists from running into low limbs and trees within or overhanging the public right-of-way, branches must be trimmed to at least 9 feet above the sidewalk area and adjacent parking strips and 15 feet above a street or alley. The City of Eugene Public Works Department will prune trees planted between the street and sidewalk at no charge to property owners. Call 682-4800 weekdays between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM.
This is a picture of a flyer announcing the Friendly Area Neighbors Summer Solstice Pancake Breakfast. This is a first annual event. Join us for some fun in the sun! Free pancake breakfast. Live music. Kids fun and Games. Sunday, June 21st in Washington Park from 8:30 AM to 11:00 AM. 2025 Washington Park.