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Alpine Ridge neighbors clean up entryway

Group of 20 restore 540-foot-long brick wall, entrance sign -

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO: DEBBIE ERICKSON - A group of 20 neighbors worked for five hours over the weekend to cleanup the entryway to Alpine Ridge.A group of Gresham homeowners came together on Saturday, July 30, to clean up the entrance to their Alpine Ridge neighborhood, at the corner of Southeast Stark Street and Northeast Kelly Avenue, in an effort to return it to its former beauty.

Organized by Rod Erickson, who has lived in the neighborhood for more than 20 years, the team of 20 people power washed the 540-foot-long brick wall bordering Stark Street, removed weeds and bushes that had grown out of control, laid fresh bark and replaced missing letters in the sign.

“All of us homeowners own the brick wall and area leading up to the sidewalk,” Erickson said, “and over the years the area didn’t get maintained. Everyone worked really hard to make this all happen.”

After driving by a few months ago, Erickson decided to finally drum up support to fix the issues plaguing the main entrance. He wrote and hand-delivered letters to all the homeowners asking for funding in support of the project, eventually raising $1,225.

Todd Green, Artisan GLM Landscaping, Jacob Reman, JR Construction of Oregon, and Mike Suminski, MS Maintenance Co., all were highlighted as being key contributors to the project. One of the neighbors also designed the new replacement wooden letters for the sign.

In total, Erickson said by doing the work themselves the neighborhood was able to avoid the more than $5,000 it would have cost to hire professionals. Money left over from the fundraising will be used to purchase replacement plants for what was removed.

The entrance had been plagued with graffiti, weeds that had grown to more than two feet and thick juniper bushes that were encroaching on the sidewalk. It took two trips to the dump with a full trailer to remove all the foliage. They also spread 15 yards of bark.

The group worked for five hours.

Erickson plans on once again hand-delivering letters to all the neighbors updating them on what was done and future plans. He is also going to set up an annual gathering to ensure the entrance stays pristine and maintained.

“Twenty years ago, when Alpine Ridge was built, it was one of the nicest neighborhoods in Gresham,” Erickson said. “I think the front entrance is now once again a reflection of that.”