Summer days might be drifting away, but the City of Wilsonville is hosting one of the largest celebrations of the season August 16. The Community Block Party will take over Town Center Park from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., replacing smaller community parties the City has hosted in years past.
"Over the last two years we had noticed that attendance wasn't what it used to be at the neighborhood events," Angela Handran, community outreach specialist for the City of Wilsonville, says.
The solution? A free citywide block party, complete with both food and activities to help promote an open dialogue between residents and the City of Wilsonville. The block party will be a chance for guests to interact with city officials, acting as a platform for citizens to voice improvement ideas.
"We want to engage the community as a whole," Handran said.
Free food from local vendors will be available on a first-come, first-served basis at the event, including pizza from Maiale di Volo, dumplings from The Dump Truck, burritos and tacos from Celeste at Las Parrillas and pulled pork and hot dogs from Slicks Big Time BBQ.
The City of Wilsonville is working hard to ensure the block party will cater to community members of all ages, with staff members running activities that include beach volleyball, lawn games and the opportunity to build a birdhouse. A rubber duck race will be hosted by the public works department, and the library will run a "Walking Storybook" for visitors to enjoy.
"This (event) is going to be so fun," Handran says. "The City staff has taken on finding activities. The only thing I told them was that we didn't want activities where staff sit behind a desk or a booth. The activities will be engaging. There will be something for all ages."
As another opportunity for citizen engagement, the Wilsonville Town Center Plan project team will showcase the new ideas for Wilsonville Town Center as well as ask for citizen input at the event.
"We really want to continue to gain insight from the community about how they think Town Center Park should be designed," Handran says.
The City of Wilsonville is already taking measures to continue the legacy of the new Community Block Party, and is in talks to make the 2018 picnic an even larger event.
"Next year we have thrown out the idea to have the picnic in celebration of Wilsonville's 50 birthday, but nothing has been confirmed," Handran says.