Meet Roseanne, this week’s volunteer spotlight!

Roseanne is one of Congress Square Park’s pioneering volunteers and her devotion has carried her through ten years of service to the park. Yes, that means before the park was established as it is today. She first joined the city’s committee in 2009 called the Congress Square Redesign Study Group which aimed to revamp the space and decide what should be done with it next. When the time came to advocate for Portland’s right to that public space, Roseanne became the co-Chair of Protect Portland Parks with previously spotlighted, David Lacasse. She played an integral role in saving the park and in starting what it is today as the Vice President of the board until 2016.

Since, Roseanne has served the park as a Park Steward, gardener, and event series organizer. She is responsible for our regular meeting group, “Chase the Chill” knitting group which gives away hand knit items on Veterans and Valentines day each year from the park. You can find her at other events such as, Tai Chi and Try Your Hand! Roseanne’s volunteer presence has brought such diversity to the programming offered in the park and adds additional layers of community service to attendees experience in the square.

Her favorite aspects of volunteering mirror those sentiments of many other volunteers. She is in awe of the connections fostered in the space which she gets to witness as a volunteer. Roseanne shared one touching story of an attendee finding a sense of belonging in Congress Square Park. She writes,

“In 2016 there was a young man who arrived around halfway through the evening (it was a Wednesday in September and dark already). He stood around the edges for 15 minutes or so before he started dancing like there was no tomorrow. After around 20 minutes of full-tilt boogie, he came around to the back of the stage and motioned that he wanted to talk to us. He told us he was a student and was feeling pretty down. He had left his apartment to just wander around and stumbled onto Congress Square Park. “I had no idea this was here, you guys saved me. Thank you.” And then he was gone.”

Her perfect day is one where she hears many bird songs. She writes, “seagulls, pigeons, cardinals, robins, makes no difference!” And with that fact, my mind was made up that Roseanne simply brings a lightness to the square in her mere presence! She even let slip that she likes to deliberately mix up the colors of the chairs and tables! In other words, she is the secret perpetrator of more whimsy and fun in the Square!

Thank, you Roseanne. WE APPRECIATE YOU!

To meet Roseanne and other awesome volunteers in the park, check out one of our upcoming events here: http://congresssquarepark.org/events/

And to learn more about volunteering with us check out: http://congresssquarepark.org/volunteer/ OR contact: <volunteer@congresssquarepark.org>

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