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Preparing for independence

Beaverton City Park fountain provides oasis from heat

by: TIMES PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Samantha Sizelove, 11, and her grandmother Terry Stroud enjoy lunch at the Beaverton City Park fountain on Tuesday, what is so far the hottest day in the Portland area this year. It wasn’t technically the Fourth of July, but the hottest day so far of 2014 attracted a holiday-like turnout to the large fountain at Beaverton City Park on Tuesday afternoon, with city residents and visitors alike beating the heat as they looked forward to their Independence Day plans on Friday.

As morning temperatures climbed quickly to reach just below 100 degrees, hundreds of all ages gathered around the concrete pad and expansive grassy area.

Lake Oswego resident Phil Tabino was drawn into the summer scene when he realized it was too late to take a dip at the Beaverton Swim Center on Southwest Third Street.

“The public swim session just ended,” he said while taking a break on a bench after cooling off in the fountain jets. “The beautiful weather brought me here. I saw the activity at the fountain and thought it would be a good place to take a dip. This is a lovely park.”

Although he will be working on Friday, his celebration of America’s 238th birthday will be spent in a labor of love manning his Philly’s Fat Omelets booth at the Lake Oswego Farmers Market. For 13 years, he’s made and sold omelets, breakfast burritos, quesadillas and Philly cheese steaks at the market.

With a forecast calling for sunny skies and temperatures in the upper-70s, Tabino anticipates a fun day for anybody to enjoy the holiday.by: TIMES PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Jesse Dietz, 9, plays in the Beaverton City Park fountain on Southwest Fifth Street while holding a GoPro camera on Tuesday, when temperatures rose to nearly 100 degrees.

“It sounds like it will be perfect,” he said, adding that it should be more than a day off to fire up the grill. “It’s about the fact that we’re celebrating our independence. I think it’s important that we reflect on the veterans who served for us.”

Aloha resident Nianna Weathersby decided to beat the heat on Tuesday with her mother, Barbara, and her children, D, 13, and Arianna, 5.

She plans to keep her July 4 plans simple by gathering with friends and family on Friday and Saturday. Rather than drive to fireworks displays at Oak Hills or the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival in Portland, family members and neighbors will provide some pyrotechnics of their own.

“I like being with family and friends, enjoying the fireworks, having a day off and sleeping in. It’s nice,” she said. “We’re celebrating the independence of our nation. I let the kids know what we’re celebrating for.”

Sitting nearby, Barbara said July 4 provides time to slow down and enjoy time with her family.

“It’s one of the best holidays,” she said. “I play a lot with the kids. That’s the best part about it.”

Beaverton resident Traci Lipp talked her friend Eryn Latt into visiting from Albany and bringing her children, Meah, 7, and Kaely, 6, to join her 6-year-old son, Tucker in a day by the fountain.

“They were really excited,” Lipp said of the kids. “They came here last summer, so they knew what they were in for.”

by: TIMES PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Alyssa Dietz, 5, of Beaverton drenches herself in the Beaverton City Park fountain on Tuesday morning while holding a GoPro camera.While Latt plans to attend an annual Fourth of July block party in her Albany neighborhood, Lipp will use the long weekend to visit Florida’s Disney World for the first time.

“We’re going to see some family in Georgia, so yeah, it’s going to be more heat,” she said. “Last year we had fireworks at the house.”

Melissa Ozmore, who lives near the Nike World Headquarters campus on Jenkins Road and Murray Boulevard, brought her kids, Melissa and Jha-Kai Dummas, to cool off and play at the park fountain. After a week or two of fluctuations between the low 60s and low 80s, she doesn’t mind Tuesday’s sudden blast of 90-degree heat.

“I was hoping it would come sooner than it had,” she said. “I’m from New York, so I’m used to more seasons. I love summer. I knew it was going to be hot all week. It’s very energizing.”

Ozmore will be busy on Friday and Saturday with 12-hour shifts as an emergency room nurse at Oregon Health and Science University Hospital in Southwest Portland.

“I’ll be taking care of people I hope won’t have blast injuries from fireworks,” she said.


Local Weather





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  • 30 May 2015

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