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Sunflowers will soon bloom on Belmont bike corrals

Posted by on May 27th, 2008 at 11:15 am


Greg Raisman wants to make the bike corrals
on SE Belmont a bit more pleasing
to the eye.
(Photos © J. Maus)

By the end of this summer, sculpted sunflowers will adorn the on-street bike parking (PDOT calls them “bike corrals”) on Belmont Street.

The project is community-wide effort being spearheaded by Greg Raisman, a Sunnyside neighborhood resident who was also instrumental in the creation of Portland’s first bike corral at Mississippi and Shaver streets in North Portland.

According to Raisman, the Belmont Bike Art project will bring six sunflowers (which happen to be the official symbols of Sunnyside Neighborhood) to the existing bike corrals on Belmont at SE 33rd and 34th streets. Raisman is working with local artists and business owners to fund and carry out the project.

The plan is for everyone in the community to draw up their own designs for the sunflowers and then let the community choose which designs should be turned into reality.

The project flyer. Click to enlarge (390k, jpg)

Last week, Raisman delivered little stands with pencils, paper, and instructions on how to participate to eight locations in the immediate area (see list below). “Anyone can draw as many flowers as they’d like,” says Raisman.

Once all the designs have been collected (deadline is June 18th), they will all be displayed at a potluck event on June 25th at nearby Sunnyside Environmental School.

Attendees of the potluck will vote on their favorite drawings and the top six vote-getters will be turned over to a team of four neighborhood artisans who will then build the sunflower racks. The artists are cargo trike designer Bill Stites, sculptor Matt Proctor, bicycle builder Sacha White, and sculptor Tim Yohman.

Raisman says support from local businesses has been key to making the project happen. Richard Satnick, owner of Laughing Planet Cafe has given several thousand dollars to the project and Hoda’s Middle Eastern Cuisine has also contributed.

Stay tuned for a look at the winning designs and see the list below for locations where you can submit your sunflower design.

Sunflower Art Drawing/Submission Locations

  • Laughing Planet Cafe (3322 SE Belmont St) – on counter near front windows
  • Opposable Thumbs (3312 SE Belmont St) – on the long study table in the hang out room
  • Aalto Lounge (3356 SE Belmont St) – on the counter in a visible spot in the back of the bar
  • It’s a Beautiful Pizza (3342 SE Belmont St) – hanging next to the Portland Mercury rack
  • Stumptown Coffee (3356 SE Belmont St) – hanging on a pillar as you walk into the shop
  • Propaganda Salon (821 SE 34th Ave) – on front counter
  • Side Street Tavern (828 SE 34th) – on bulletin board near bathroom
  • Hoda’s Middle Eastern Cuisine (3401 SE Belmont) – hanging inside
  • Sound Grounds (3701 SE Belmont St) – on counter near cash register
  • Paradox Cafe (3439 SE Belmont St) – on display table next to counter

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Greg Raisman May 27, 2008 at 11:47 am

    Thanks for the great article, Jonathan. I can\’t wait to see the creative sunflowers drawings that people submit!

    I\’d be remiss not to mention the huge amount of neighborhood volunteer time that had taken this project as far as it has come.

    Meredith Hendricks, Peter Nierengarten, Bill Stites, Beth Raisman, Ben Hung, Donna Cassioli, Tom Marshall, and Damon Eckoff have also put a lot of time into this effort.

    Bring on the sunflowers!

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  • RyNO Dan May 27, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    The bollards around those corrals are
    really ugly. Hope they\’re phased out.
    Good luck with the flowers. –Dan–

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  • Galen May 27, 2008 at 2:01 pm

    FYI, the corrals are at 33rd and 34th. In the photo, Greg is standing at 33rd.


    [Thanks Galen.. I\’ve made the correction — Jonathan Maus, Editor]

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  • Austin Ramsland May 27, 2008 at 2:44 pm

    What a cool idea. Nice work Greg!

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  • Arty May 28, 2008 at 11:05 am


    This is a great idea — public art that promotes cycling! Can\’t wait to see it.

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  • Greg Raisman May 28, 2008 at 11:53 am

    Thanks for the feedback. But — don\’t forget to stop by and draw a sunflower. The more drawings the better!

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  • kiwimunki May 28, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    The mathematical genius of the sunflower and the creativity of our community coming together to beautify our bike parking. How kick-ass.

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  • Damon Eckhoff May 28, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    Keep spreading the word. This is fun opportunity for the community (both artists and non-artists) to make a little magic happen in our neighborhood… conception to finished sculpture.

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