Seasoned Adult Enrichment Program announces winter term
Dan Haneckow kicks off the winter term of the Seasoned Adult Enrichment Program with a presentation based on his recent book "Portland Then and Now." The talk begins at 9:30 a.m. on Jan. 17.
The SAEP is a member-led club that provides educational experiences to seniors, or "seasoned adults," in Clackamas County; most meetings are held at Clackamas Community College's Harmony Campus, 7726 S.E. Harmony Road, unincorporated Milwaukie. The cost is $3 per presentation.
As the title suggests, "Portland Then and Now" features photographs of familiar metro area landmarks as they were decades ago, and as they appear now.
Sites include: New Market Theater, Pioneer Courthouse, First National Bank, City Hall, Berg Building, Portland Art Museum, Masonic Temple, Paramount Theatre, Union Station, Pittock Mansion, Bagdad Theater, Hollywood Theatre, St. Johns Bridge and Swan Island, among others.
Haneckow's presentation will follow the format of the book, a photo of a location from then followed by a photo of the same place now, he said.
Change seems to be the subject of conversation in the Portland metro area, and some people are not happy about it.
"Widespread demolitions can bring a profound sense of loss. On a strictly visual level, unique and small is often replaced by commonplace and large," Haneckow said.
"The speed of change means we see the same currently in-vogue architectural elements reshuffled and set down again and again. New construction is often built without regard to the context of the surroundings, sometimes almost spitefully so," he added.
"Most people feel a strong attachment to place. It can be manifested as nostalgia, or the appreciation of unique architecture, or the joy of seeing history written on a cityscape," Haneckow said.
But some changes are for the better, he noted, pointing to the "revival of streetcar era retail strips on streets like Mississippi, Belmont, Alberta and Northwest 23rd."
Those strips have created "walkable, varied districts which, along with food carts, propelled a citywide thriving culinary and artisanal scene."
As he was researching the book, Haneckow said he came across fascinating stories.
He was especially impressed by the giant neon goose atop Powers Furniture, now the Director building, on Southwest Third and Yamhill in downtown Portland.
"It was purchased by Harvey Dick in 1964. He wanted to place [the goose] atop the Hoyt Hotel with the addition of a red, neon blinking eye. It never happened, and the goose vanished from history. I like to think it still exists, boxed up in a warehouse somewhere," Haneckow said.
He noted that he likes to make presentations like the one for the Seasoned Adult Enrichment Program because it gives him a chance to point out the three types of comparisons in the book:
Some of the images showcase very little change, others depict images where nothing of the original site remains, and some images depict a mix of continuity and change.
"All three are interesting for different reasons. The images with no continuity restore a lost geography, while those with no change offer a sense of reassurance," Haneckow said.
He added, "The ones that mix the two are for me the most interesting. A static city with no change would be just as boring as one where everything was replaced by new construction. It's the interplay between then and now that draws people in."
To learn more about Dan Haneckow, visit cafeunknown.com.
To learn more about the $3 presentations offered by the Seasoned Adult Enrichment Program, visit clackamas.edu/academics/academic-offerings/community-education/seasoned-adult-enrichment-program or call 503-594-0620.
Upcoming presentations include:
Jan. 24: "Roads Less Traveled in Oregon," by Steve Arndt
Jan. 31: Barbara Smith Randall will talk about Willamette Valley Wineries.
Feb. 7: "Six Signs It's a Scam," by Ellen Kiem
Feb. 14: Field trip to the End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive & Visitor Information Center, 1726 Washington St., in Oregon City.
Feb. 21: "Protecting the Owyhee Canyonlands," by Bonnie J. Quigley
Feb. 28: "Tourism Through a Historical Lens," by Theresa Rea
The final SAEP event will offer the group an opportunity to see an on-stage production from CCC's Theater Department. More information will be available at a later date.