My View • Baseball is just the type of family activity that our community needs
by: L.E. BASKOW, The Portland Beavers' Craig Stansberry connects with a hit against the Sacramento RiverCats last summer. A My View writer believes the team has been an essential part of Portland’s history and needs to be saved for children and the community.

While I offer my support to Mayor Denny Doyle and members of the Beaverton City Council for the development of a public facility in Beaverton that can accommodate the Portland Beavers baseball team, I may also have a different perspective than many other people on this issue.

At the kickoff rally I attended at Beaverton High School in August to bring baseball to our community, I brought along a 1946 Beavers program and spoke about opportunities I had as a child to watch the Beavers play in Portland. Sixty-three years ago, in 1946, the franchise had already been established in our community for more than 40 years - an unbelievable legacy in a time when many businesses were closing due to awful economic times.

I have long been a proponent of bringing Major League Baseball to Oregon, because I know it would be great for our families and our local economy. Baseball and other family activities are exactly what is needed in Beaverton, just as when I was a child growing up watching players like Eddie Basinski, Luis Tiant, George Freese and many others.

Over the past few years, we have been unable to prevent a number of disturbing things that have occurred and changed our world here in Oregon. We have lost many major companies and local jobs, and several community icons have gone away. The Portland Beavers have been part of our history, and it is essential that we do everything in our power to save the Beavers and baseball for our children and the community. If ever there was a quality of life issue that warranted your support, this is the one you need to support.

We need a 'win'

In this difficult economy, we should not stand by and watch as we lose another great business. Here, we also have the opportunity to watch the synergistic effects the new facility will have on our Beaverton community. Construction jobs will be followed by new full-time jobs and new restaurants, and businesses will surely follow in the neighborhood. This will be a win for the community, I have no doubt.

I was active in supporting the development of the library in Beaverton, and we continue to support Sunset High School baseball, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, PCC Foundation, the Broadway Rose Theater and many other worthwhile community efforts. In that same manner, I am passionate in my support for bringing the Beavers to Beaverton and saving the team for our community and our children. I am asking you to join me in that support and bring your passion to the table as well.

In closing, let me simply exhort you to realize that we are able, together, to cast aside the indifference displayed by many and make a difference in this particular matter. I realize there are issues that need to be resolved and difficult choices to be made. However, I am convinced that by working together with purpose, we can achieve a common goal that will make Beaverton a tremendous place to live and play, and pave the way for families to enjoy life together.

Harvey Platt is chairman of Platt Electric Supply. He lives in Southwest Portland and has been active in many community endeavors, including arts, sports and health care issues.

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