Portland Italian Film Festival Kicks Off This Week With Free Movies at Lake Oswego’s Lake Theater

Movie buffs are in for a treat this week with the Italian Film Festival taking place in Portland and launching right in our hometown at the Lake Theater and Café.

This year’s lineup features ten films (one is a compilation of seven short films) in genres that include comedy, drama and documentary.

It’s a great excuse to practice your Italian for your next trip to Tuscany but not to worry—all films carry English subtitles. And the films are gratuito! (That’s Italian for free).

As a warm-up to the film festival, you can attend a special library presentation this Thursday from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on “Understanding Italy: An exploration of history, food, cultural heritage and current issues through contemporary Italian cinema.” Portland State Language Professor Zagarella will draw on the themes of the movies to shed some light on the challenges facing Italy today.

Here’s the lineup:

AS NEEDED (Comedy) Thursday, April 18 • 7:30 p.m. • Lake Theater & Café. Arturo, a talented chef with a troubled past, is assigned to serve community time as a cooking instructor at a school for teenagers with Asperger’s syndrome. One of the students, Guido, has great talent and passion for cooking. Will the improbable friendship between the two help Arturo change his life around?

BOB & MARYS (Comedy) Friday, April 19 • 7:30 p.m. • Lake Theater & Café. Married couple Roberto and Marisa lead a tranquil and uneventful life, until criminals break into their house and fill it with boxes containing illegal merchandise. This practice, known as “accùppatura”, forces the homeowners to warehouse the items. That is until the couple makes a bold move!

JUST BELIEVE (Comedy) Saturday, April 20 • 5:00 p.m. • Lake Theater & Café. Massimo, owner of a dilapidated bed and breakfast, is over-whelmed by his tax burden. He has an epiphany: in order to survive he must transform his B&B into a place of worship! Tax-free status! Get ready to convert!

BALENTES (Documentary) Saturday, April 20 • 7:00 p.m. • Lake Theater & Café. A journey to expose the truth about NATO bombing ranges that have had devastating consequences on the local human and animal population of the once pristine island of Sardinia.

MATHERA (Documentary) Friday, April 26 • 6:00 p.m. • Bloodworks Live Studio. A journey to Matera, a troglodyte city once defined as the ‘shame of Italy’ that, today, has become a desired tourist destination, UNESCO World Heritage Site and the 2019 European Capital of Culture.

LET ME INTRODUCE YOU TO SOFIA (Comedy) Friday, April 26 • 8:00 p.m. • Bloodworks Live Studio.  Gabriele, the divorced father of 10 year-old Sofia, meets the woman of his dreams. But Mara doesn’t like children. How can he make the two most important women in his life happy?

UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE (Sentimental drama) Saturday, April 27 • 6:00 p.m. • Bloodworks Live Studio. Vladimir is a young Italian-Russian, raised in St. Petersburg by his mother, a former opera singer. When she dies, she entrusts Vladimir with a mission: find his father, who repairs instruments for the Verona Opera. Cameo appearance by the three singers of Il Volo

THE GIRL IN THE FOG (Drama) Saturday, April 27 • 8:00 p.m. • Bloodworks Live Studio. In a small Alpine village, sixteen-year-old Anna Lou disappears. Vogel, a police detective who is famous for using mass media to create a chaos, arrives. There are no clues, no tracks to follow.

SHORT FILM PROGRAM (Comedy, Drama, Animation) Sunday, April 28 • 3:00 p.m. • Bloodworks Live Studio. Seven recent films—Filmesque, Magic Alps, Happy Hour, SugarLove, Day Labor, Elvis and The World Cup in a Square—are in competition for your vote for best short film.

LIKE A CAT ON A HIGHWAY (Comedy) Sunday, April 28 • 5:00 p.m. • Bloodworks Live Studio. Giovanni and Monica are the most diverse people on the face of the earth. He is an intellectual living in the center of Rome; she is a former supermarket cashier living in a multicultural suburb. They would never have met if their children did not start dating. The two have a common goal: the friendship between their children, like a cat on a highway, must end!

The Lake Theater and Café is located at 106 N. State Street, 503.387.3236. Bloodworks Live Studio is at 1210 SW 6th Avenue, 503.517.6000. For further information, visit the website.

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Celebrate Arbor Week This Week in Lake Oswego

Lake Oswegans love their trees. And with good reason, some of which we may not even realize.

  • The city of Lake Oswego estimates that every street tree in Lake Oswego yields $2.63 in energy savings (gas and electric combined) per year due to cooling effects in the summer and wind-protection effects in the winter.
  • Trees also add to our property values, with estimates between 3 and 10 percent. This is true not only for ones standing on our property but also in our neighborhoods.
  • Some studies even suggest that the more trees a neighborhood has, the less crime it will see. What’s the connection? One explanation is that landscaped yards encourage neighbors to be out and about, thereby increasing the informal surveillance.

So it’s no wonder that here in Oregon we don’t just honor trees with one day like the rest of the nation. We dedicate an entire week, April 7-13.

And this year Lake Oswego is also celebrating its benchmark 30th year as a Tree City USA (TCUSA), a certification provided by the National Arbor Day Foundation to recognize cities for demonstrating a strong commitment to managing and caring for trees. Over the last 30 years, Lake Oswego has met the four TCUSA standards by maintaining a tree board (the Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Advisory Board), a tree ordinance, a minimum $2 per capita expenditure for tree planting and maintenance, and an annual celebration and proclamation of Arbor Day.

Here are some of the activities scheduled that you can participate in.


Sunday, April 7, 1-3 p.m., Parking: Gravel trail head is off Brookside Rd./Twin Fir Rd., Lake Oswego. Trail head is behind the Oswego Hunt Club.

Kick-off Arbor Week by helping Friends of Iron Mt. Park as they remove invasive species that crowd out the native plants. The native plants thank you for clearing the forest of invasive species that compete for the sun and soil. Allow extra time to wander the paths that wind through 50 acres of forest to the eagle’s eye viewing platform. Contact: Mike Buck, 503-914-8607 or m.bucks@comcast.net.


Tuesday, April 9, 1010:45 a.m. at Luscher Farm, 125 Rosemont Road

Parents, stroll the farm with your preschooler and enjoy sensory garden-based activities. Hear a story about trees, then take a look at the city’s Heritage Trees. Parents must accompany children. Class is held rain or shine! Free drop-in program for ages 0-5.


Thursday, April 11, 2:30-3:30 p.m. at Lake Oswego Public Library (lower level), 706 4th Street

Using a variety of techniques, participants will pay homage to the humble tree. Make life-like cherry blossoms with twigs and tissue paper, shadow paintings of trees using tape and paints, or outline your arm to form a trunk that supports all manner of leaves. Drop-in event recommended for kids age 5 and up.


Friday, April 12, 10:30-11:30 a.m., Parking: Uplands Grade School, 2055 Wembley Park Rd., Lake Oswego. Park entrance is behind the playground.

Bring your preschoolers to learn how trees help us, birds, animals and even plants. Friends of Springbrook Park will lead participants on a walk in the woods to discover trees that help others. Find a special tree to thank with a great big hug!  Exploration buckets are provided. Be prepared to explore rain or shine. Contact: Laura Tanz, 503-702-7937 or blmjt2205@gmail.com.


Saturday, April 13, 9-11 a.m., Parking: Near the intersection of Atwater Rd. and Knaus Rd., Lake Oswego. Woodmont Park is down a graveled trail.

Join Friends of Woodmont Park to remove invasive species that threaten the native plants. This habitat restoration helps ensure that the native plants thrive. Native plants provide shelter and food for local birds, animals and pollinators as well as stabilize the soil. Mother Earth says Thank You! Contact: Heidi Schrimsher, 503-754-6640 or heidigarden@msn.com.


Saturday, April 13, 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Foothills Park, 199 Foothills Road

Bring your friends and neighbors to visit an extraordinary tree seedling to be planted at Foothills Park and celebrate Arbor Week and National Poetry Month. The tree was grown from a seed that survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945 and was brought to Lake Oswego by the One Sunny Day Initiatives Program through the Green Legacy Hiroshima Project. We will unveil a commemorative plaque, hear from guest speakers including representatives from the Veterans Memorial Project and Oregon Poet Laureate Kim Stafford, present the City’s 30 Year Tree City USA Award and enjoy refreshments. Learn more by visiting glh.unitar.org and www.osdinitiatives.com.


April 1-26

Bring In celebration of 30 years of Tree City USA status, Arbor Week and National Arbor Day, the City of Lake Oswego is hosting an art contest for K-8th grade Lake Oswego students. This year’s theme is all about Douglas-fir, Oregon’s state tree and an iconic symbol of Lake Oswego. Contestants are invited to create a work of art featuring Douglas-fir in any way imaginable—from needles and cones to individual trees and groves, as tiny seedlings or majestic giants, providing food and cover for animals, and so much more. Draw, color, paint or create a collage representing this splendid species.


  • One entry per person.
  • Any medium on paper.
  • Not to exceed 15” x 15” in size and must be able to tape on a wall for display.
  • Art should represent Douglas-fir.
  • Drop-off your entry on or before National Arbor Day, Friday, April 26th, at either: the Lake Oswego Public Golf Course, 17525 SW Stafford Road; or the Lake Oswego Public Library, 706 4th Street.
  • Valid entries must include:
    • Name and grade on the front-side; and,
    • Telephone number, e-mail address, and the name of your Lake Oswego school on the back-side of your art.


Entries will be on display at the Lake Oswego Public Golf Course at 17525 SW Stafford Road through early May. Art will be judged on creativity and overall design based on the theme. First, second and third prize winners will be selected in each of three divisions: K-2nd grade, 3rd-5th grade, and 6th-8th grade. The judges’ decision is final.


Winners will be notified by phone on or before May 10th and prize packs will be awarded at the Lake Oswego Farmers’ Market on May 18th.


Contestants are encouraged to learn more about Douglas-fir trees by searching the internet, visiting the local library, talking with gardeners and exploring nature. Consider touring the City’s Heritage Trees, which include six individual Douglas-firs and two groves of Douglas-firs. Have fun!


Saturday, May 19, 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at Millennium Plaza Park, 200 First Street

Celebrate forestry at the Farmers’ Market on opening day! Activities include Urban & Community Forestry booths and activities for children and adults. Spin the prize wheel, do a craft, watch a tree pruning demonstration, receive a free tree seedling, and learn about stewardship opportunities in your neighborhood. Arbor Day Art Contest winners will be announced and prizes will be awarded.


For the 13th consecutive year, the City is pleased to offer a series of free Urban and Community Forestry Workshops for the public. Please call 503-635-0290 or email planning@lakeoswego.city for free registration. This year’s lineup includes:

Tree Pruning – Saturday, April 20, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Foothills Park Pavilion, 199 Foothills Road.

Understand why, what, and how to prune to develop healthy, strong, and attractive trees and shrubs. Explore pruning types, proper cutting tools and techniques, and tree responses to pruning. Bring pruning tools, if you have them, and wear appropriate clothing for working outside in this hands-on workshop led by ISA Board Certified Master Arborist Damon Schrosk of Treecology, Inc. Refreshments will be provided.

Native and Invasive Tree Identification Walking Tour – Saturday, August 3, 10 – 11:30 a.m., meet at Forest Hills Elementary School, 1133 Andrews Road.

Identify and discuss common native and invasive tree species with ISA Board Certified Master Arborist Todd Prager of Teragan & Associates on a neighborhood walking tour. Todd will explain common terms, concepts, and techniques used in tree identification, and help you become familiar with how to identify a tree by looking at leaves, fruit, bark, twigs, and form. Please wear sturdy shoes and bring your own water.

Other Workshops to be Scheduled This Year:

    • Gardening for Pollinators
    • Understanding the Tree Code: Removal & Protection Permits
    • Creating Backyard Habitat
    • Right Tree in the Right Place: Selection, Planting and Care

Visit www.ci.oswego.or.us/planning to learn more and look for workshop dates to be announced in monthly Hello LO newsletters.

Trees are just one thing that add property value to your home. Want to know what else before you embark on a remodeling project? Give me a call and we can discuss. I’ll let you know what types of home improvements will translate into  returns on your investments when it comes time to sell. 503.939.9801 and check out my website




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Sign Up Now for Summer Camp Fun in Lake Oswego

Today is the last day of Spring Break here in Lake Oswego so it may seem a bit early to be looking into summer camps for your kids, but take it from me—it’s not. Registration for camps offered through the Lake Oswego Parks and Recreation Department opens next Monday, April 8 and classes available through the Lakewood Center are already taking enrollment.

I’ll warn you—there are lots of options to choose from right now with all the popular regular offerings like Angelina Ballerina, Radical Robotics, Gaming and Coding, Teen Service Corps, LO Explorers, Wilderness Survival, Golf, Rowing and Tennis Camps being joined by some new offerings. So give yourself some time to sort through it all. And remember that in many cases, before and/or care is available for an additional fee.

Here’s a rundown of some of the new offerings from LAKE OSWEGO PARKS AND RECREATION


  • Miss Eve’s Fancy Nancy Camp for ages 3-5 draws inspiration from France as budding ballerinas dance, sing, and get artsy. Monday through Friday, August 12 through August 16 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $128/Resident; $148/Non-Resident. Class 19217.
  • Sleeping Beauty Dance for ages 4-7 who want to dancer like Princess Aurora at her 16th birthday ball. Monday through Thursday, August 12 through August 15 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Academy of Ballet & Dance Arts, 311 B Ave., Suite Z. Fees are $4175/Resident; $201/Non-Resident. Class 19221.
  • Sizzle and Stomp Camp for 6-10 year old’s who can’t get enough of So You Think You Can Dance. They’ll learn the basic elements of hip hop like popping, isolation and freestyleas well as how to choreograph their own routines. Monday through Friday, June 24 through June 28 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $138/Resident; $158 Non-Resident. Class 19245.
  • Flashdance fans between the ages of 11-17 will get a chance to learn the moves that have made this movie a classic. Focus will be on ballet and contemporary techniques with a performance at the end. Monday through Friday, July 8 through July 12 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $138/Resident; $158/Non-Resident. Class 19246.
  • Grease is the Word for those musical loving 11-17 year old’s. The focus will be on musical theatre and jazz while students learn routines to classics like “You’re the One That I want.” Monday through Friday August 12 through August 16 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $138/Resident’ $158/Non-Resident. Class 19247.


  • Campfire Music Camp for ages 8-12 teaches the basics of ukuleles, guitars and hand drums so campers can entertain themselves and others. Offered through RMC Studios. Monday through Friday, July 15 through July 19 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $147/Resident; $170 Non-Resident. Class 19256.
  • String Teens Camp for ages 11-17 is an introduction to a variety of string instruments including the ukulele and guitar. Offered through RMC Studios. Monday through Friday, August 5 through August 9 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $147/Resident; $170 Non-Resident. Class 19264.


  • Scene of the Crime for ages 7-12 equips participants with the skills to figure out whodunit including how to collect, analyze and understand what evidence is telling them about a crime scene. Monday through Friday, July 15 through July 19 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $178/Resident; $205 Non-Resident. Class 19273.
  • Harry Potter Magical Engineering using Lego® Materials for ages 5-7 will have your Harry Potter fans finding Platform 9¾, building Hogwarts Express, constructing Hogwarts Castle and challenging the Hungarian Horntail Dragon. Monday through Friday, July 8 through July 12 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $155/Resident; $178/Non-Resident. Class 19280 And for the full immersion experience, sign your potterheads up for the afternoon session where the magic continues as they build Diagon Alley, hop on Broomsticks and play Quidditch, duel the evil Lord Voldemort and hone their magical skills. Monday through Friday, July 8 through July 12 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills. Fees are same as above. Class 19281.


  • Intro to 3D—Handprinted 3D Creations Camp for ages 5-7. Their eyes will light up when they see the creations they can make with this 3Doodler Pen: robot rocket, triceratops and other models to take home. Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. from August 12 hrough August 16 at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $183/Resident; $211/Non-Resident. Class 19299.
  • 3D Printing—Super Heroes to the Rescue for ages 7-12. They’ll be hooked once they see their hand-drawn designs morph into actual 3D printed models of their superheroes. Kids will explore the basic concepts of 3D printing and CAD computer-aided design. Monday through Friday, August 12 through August 16 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $183/Resident; $211/Non-Resident. Class 19316
  • STEM Challenge and Harry Potter Using Lego® Materials for ages 7-12 is an all-day immersion into engineering and wizardry for Harry Potter fans. Participants will build trains, helicopters, treehouses and beam bridges and then let the action begin. Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. from August 19 through August 23 at Christ Church Parish, 1060 Chandler Rd.
    Fees are $304/Resident; $350/Non-Resident. Class 19284.
  • Roblox Studio Programming and Game Development for ages 9-15. Calling all Roblox gamers for a chance to immerse themselves in a 3D world using programming that uses physics, LUA programming and creativity. Monday through Thursday, July 22 through July 25 rom 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Fees are $150/Resident; $173/Non-Resident. Class 19323.


  • Baseball Camp for ages 8-10 and 11-13 presented by 503 Baseball, a local training facility. Focus will be on skill development through innovative drills. Tuesday through Thursday, July 16 through July 18 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at East Waluga Park 15005 Quarry Rd. Fees are $95/Resident; $119/Non-Resident. Class 19442 for ages 8-10; 19443 for ages 11-13.
  • Jordan Kent Skills Camp for ages 6-12 is hosted by former University of Oregon three-sport athlete and NFL player, Jordan Kent. Campers will get beginning through intermediate training in football, soccer or basketball along with life skills, nutrition, agility and a chance to compete for prizes. Monday through Thursday, June 17 through June 20 and July 29 through August 1 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ($149.95) or 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. ($179.95). Register at the Jordan Kent website. https://www.jordankentcamps.com/lake-oswego-camps
  • Jordan Kent Speed and Agility Clinics for ages 12+ help campers develop this competitive edge so they can be quick on their feet and change direction without slowing down. Wednesdays from July 17 thorugh August 14 from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at East Waluga Park, 15005 Quarry Road. Fees are $25/session or $120 for the entire series. Register at the Jordan Kent website: https://www.jordankentcamps.com/lake-oswego-camps
  • STEM Soccer Camp for ages 7-12 reveals the science behind the game as campers explore ball design, throw-in science, angles and goal line technique. Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. August 12 through August 16 at Forest Hills Elementary, 1133 Andrews Road. Register at the Skyhaws website: https://www.skyhawks.com/

And popular classes from the LAKEWOOD CENTER FOR THE ARTS return including:

  • Kids Create—Summer Stars for ages 4 through 8 inspires children to create, design and produce their own shows based around weekly camp themes. One week camps beginning July 8 and running through August 16. Monday through Friday from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Fee: $115.
  • TV/Film Acting for ages 7 to 11 and ages 12 to 17. Two different sessions, one from July 22 through July 26, and another August 5 through August 9, give young thespians the opportunity to create and perform their own shows, practice improvisation and audition skills while gaining instant feedback. Monday through Friday from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. for the younger group and 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. for the older. Fee: $120.

Check the website for a complete schedule. And don’t forget—kids don’t get to have all the fun! The Lakewood Center offers summer classes for adults too including Acting for Non-Actors and Pocket Sketching Workshop.

Things really pick up in the summer in Lake Oswego. Don’t miss a thing–subscribe to my blog by clicking the “Sign me up” button in the right hand column. The real estate market picks up too so if you are thinking of moving to, within, or out of Lake Oswego, give me a call at 503.939.9801 and check out my website. Let me put my 30+ years as a Realtor in Lake Oswego to work for you!



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6 Excuses That Do NOT Excuse You from Entering This Year’s Lake Run on May 11

  1. It’s too hard. Yes, the Lake Run has earned the reputation of the run you love to hate because it does pose its challenges, like the McVey hill climb, not to mention a myriad of what I like to refer to as “nuisance” climbs along the way. Even though it has this reputation, however, Mapmyrun has given the Lake Run its least difficult rating category of all its categorized climbs—a Category 5. Climb scores are based on distance, grade/elevation change and maximum elevation. So who ya gonna listen to—the experts… or a bunch of runners who perhaps like to embellish their running horror stories once they’re done? I’ve “been there, done that,” and I’ll give you that it’s challenging but if I can do it, you can do it!
  2. I haven’t trained. It’s March 24. You have seven weeks. Experts recommend allowing eight to ten weeks if you’ve never run a 10K before so you’re just shy of that, but if you have some running experience or have run a 5K before, then you’re good. You’ve got enough time to get ready.
  3. I don’t like hills. You have options. While the highest elevation of the 10K is 454 feet, the 5K starts at 116 feet and only goes up to 230 so easy peasy. The climb is so minimal that the 5K doesn’t even register a category listing on mapmyrun. And race organizers describe the course as “meandering” –that’s not a word that should scare you away. Of course, you could always walk up McVey…you wouldn’t be the first, and you definitely won’t be the last. Just be sure to start at the back of the pack if you plan on doing so to enable more competitive runners to pace themselves.
  4. I only enter races in which I can get a t-shirt. Well, if you register by April 30 you are guaranteed an official t-shirt. So what are you waiting for? If you’re a procrastinator, or you want to train a few weeks before you commit, you can still possibly get a t-shirt if you register after the 30th, but they go on a first-come, first-served basis after that.
  5. I only enter USATF certified races. The 10K and the 5K were measured and certified by an official with the USA Track and Field Association in April 2014. Thus, you can run with assurance that the distance is exact to USATF standards.
  6. I don’t have a babysitter on Sundays so need to push my kid in the stroller. Not a problem! Strollers and the use of MP3s are allowed in the 10K and 5K races. For the safety of everyone, walkers and stroller participants are asked to begin the race at the back of the pack.

So now that you don’t have an excuse, here are a few other things you should know.

  • This is the first year that the run is being organized by Northwest Housing Alternatives. This nonprofit was the beneficiary of the Lake Run proceeds last year and supplied many of the volunteers to ensure a smooth transition for 2019.
  • In addition to the 10K (starts at 8:00 a.m.) and 5K (8:15 a.m. start time) , there will be a Kid’s Dash starting at 10:00 a.m. .
  • Fees are: 10K: $45 through April 11; $50 afterwards. 5K: $40 through April 11; $45 afterwards. Kid’s Dash: $15.
  • Family Fun Festival will take place the morning of the run complete with a DJ, face-painting and crafts for the kids.
  • For more information and to register, go to the Lake Oswego Lake Run website.

If you’re thinking of moving in, out, or around Lake Oswego, you have no excuse not to give me a call at 503.939.9801 and/or check out my website. I’ve been a Realtor in Lake Oswego for over 30 years and would love to put experience to work for you!


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Puppy Love is Alive and Well in Lake Oswego with 2 Dog Parks and 2 Off-Leash Areas

Here’s Buddy Costello out on a family walk back when he was a pup and most of his awake time was spent playing. Buddy happens to be the fourth most popular male dog name in the U.S.

Drive around Lake Oswego and it will quickly become apparent that Lake Oswegans love their dogs. From dressing up their pooches in red white and blue for the Star Spangled Parade to taking them to a local dog park, puppy love is a real thing here.

So in honor of National Puppy Day on Saturday, March 23, I wanted to provide some fun facts about our four-legged friends as well as a guide to our local dog parks and off-leash areas.


  • The most popular male dog name last year was Max. Bella won out for females.
  • When a puppy is born he is blind, deaf and toothless.
  • That may help explain why in the first two weeks of life, puppies sleep nearly 90% of the time, spending most of their awake time nursing. Don’t get used to that—come eight weeks later and most of their time will be spent playing (oh, and chewing when they’re teething).
  • Dogs have over 200 million scent receptors in their noses compared to only 5 million in humans’
  • Over 60 million American households have a dog.
  • The most followed dog on Instagram is Jiff Pom – a Pomeranian with 8.9 followers who some say could be making $35,000 a post!


Hazelia Dog Park at Luscher Farm, 17800 Stafford Road.

  • There are two separate off-leash areas, one for timid and shy dogs (northernmost area) and one for more outgoing and assertive dogs (the larger area facing the parking lot). Both are a good size allowing for lots of romping around.
  • Poo bags are provided as well as receptacles to dispose of them.
  • It’s free to all-comers.
  • The park is open daily from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
  • It can get muddy when it rains so be prepared to clean your dog up before loading him/her back into your car
  • Know that the park is as much for socializing among the dogs as it is for their owners. Regulars enjoy the company of other canine-smitten humans as well as their wet-nosed charges.

 West Waluga Dog Park:  15775 Waluga Drive

  • This is the newest addition to Lake Oswego’s dog parks built in 2018 as a team project with the help of the Maintenance Board of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Association.
  • Poo bags are provided as well as receptacles to dispose of them.
  • It’s free to all-comers.
  • The park is open daily from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.


Off-leash areas are designed to give dog owners and their dogs another option for recreational activity without impacting over park visitors or the environment. Success depends on dog owners respecting others’ park experience and following the rules which include:

  • All dogs must be kept on-leash except in areas designated by signs as “off-leash” and must be under control by owner/keeper at all times
  • Owners/keepers must promptly remove excrement or other solid waste desposited by the animal.
  • All dogs on park property must be licensed and current in vaccinations.
  • Dogs are not allowed on Athletic Fields unless authorized by the Parks and Recreation Department Director.
  • Off-leash areas are open March 15-Spetember 15
  • Designated off-leash areas are located at the following parks:

-Pilkington Park, 19043 Pilkington, open area, no fencing

-McNary Park, 43 Beckett, open area, no fencing

Don’t miss out on what’s to love about Lake Oswego. Subscribe to my blog by clicking the “Sign me up” button in the top right hand column.

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Lake Oswego’s St. Patrick’s Day Festival Kicks Off Friday With a Passing of the Torch

They say “All good things must come to an end,” but not if you’re Maher’s Irish Pub. Instead, “All good things must continue…just with a name change,” according to new co-owner, Justyn Reese who has invited the original owners, the Maher family, to help kick off the annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival this week with a “passing of the torch/Guinness” at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 15.

After the handoff, Maher’s will become The Dullahan Irish Pub but besides the name change, Justyn and his co-owners, wife Heather and brother Brian, expect to carry on the traditions that have made the local pub a popular spot.

That starts with a festive lineup for the annual St. Patrick’s Day celebration which runs from 11:00 a.m. Friday until 11:00 p.m. Sunday night. Activities include live music, Irish dancers, bag pipers, giveaways, drink specials and Irish classics like corned beef and cabbage, shepherd’s pie, and bangers.

Whiskey drinkers will not want to miss this year’s event. The pub will be featuring a rye whiskey that has been out of production for 130 years from Kilbeggan, the oldest continually licensed distillery in Ireland. And a Jameson Whiskey representative will be on hand offering tastings. And if you agree with Mark Twain that “Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough,” then head over to the ICB (Irish Car Bomber) station to round out the night.

The event will be kid-friendly until 5:00 p.m., with a $10 cover charge going into effect starting at 4:00 p.m. Sunday morning, starting at 11:00 a.m. kids can enjoy face painting and outside games as well.

Justyn has been in the industry for 16 years as a bartender, manager, performer and musician and has been looking for an opportunity for a place to call his own. His family fell in love with the personality of Maher’s pub and hope to breathe their passion for the business into it.

The Dullahan name? Let’s just say that’s another story to be revealed in the future and something tells me it’s going to take another party to tell it.

The pub is located at 352 B Avenue. 503.305.8087.

I’m a 99.6% Irish Costello and would love to put my Irish charm, luck and over 30 years of experience as a Realtor to work for you in searching for your next home. Give me a call at 503.939.9801 and check out my website. I promise you no blarney! 

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7 Mistakes Your Don’t Want to Make When Pricing Your Home to Sell in Lake Oswego

Price is considered by many to be the most important marketing decision you can make when it comes to selling your home. Given that, you want to be sure not to make these mistakes:

1. Listing it at a price your neighbors told you they sold theirs for. When deciding how to price your home, you need to do more market research than asking your neighbor. While you may live on the same street, you may not be comparing apples to apples. Theirs might be newer or have been recently updated. Yours might have a bigger yard. Theirs might have a downstairs master while yours is on the second floor.

Timing is another factor to consider. Maybe your houses are pretty similar but they sold theirs in a seller’s market and now there is a backlog of inventory giving buyers the upper hand.

2. Listing your house at a higher price so you have room to negotiate. This is one of those real estate myths that just can’t be put to rest but if you rely on it, it can work against you. Here’s how.

You could be eliminating potential buyers. Buyers shop with a certain budget in mind, many times thanks to a pre-loan approval. If you’ve overpriced your home and out of their budget, they may not even look at it, when in fact, they could have afforded it if you’d listed it at its true value.

You could be lengthening the time your house stays on the market. If your house is overpriced, it’s very likely it will take longer to sell. Days on market is one of the factors that influences a home’s perceived value so the longer it sits there, the more “negotiating room” the buyer believes he or she has. So that “wriggle room” you left room for just got a lot bigger.

3. Listing your house without a comparative market analysis. Remember what I said about comparing apples to apples? That’s what a comparative market analysis done through a professional Realtor does. It takes your house’s square footage, condition, location, age, etc. and compares it to similar homes that have sold. You should start your listing decision with this data-backed information in hand and only list with a Realtor who insists on doing one.

4. Listing your house at a higher price because you’re in no hurry to sell. If you’re not in a hurry to sell, then it’s better to wait before putting your home on the market. This luxury of time that you feel you have can be eaten up by that “days on market” factor I mentioned earlier. An overpriced home will sit on the market longer because (a) experienced Realtors will advise their clients that your home is overpriced (b) potential buyers won’t even look at your home because they think it is out of their price range. Waiting until you’re ready to move on and then list your house at its market value.

5. Listing your house with the real estate agent who comes in with the highest listing price. Sellers often go with what they want to hear, only to pay for it later. Every Realtor has his or her own approach to getting listings and one of those is to essentially “buy” the listing by offering the highest price. But if you’ve interviewed several real estate agents and they’ve all come in with lower values, consider what I’ve said earlier about the perils of overpricing your home.

6. Listing your home before you’ve taken care of repairs. Some sellers prefer to ignore certain home repairs to save money when putting their home on the market. Others, once again, may hike up their asking price anticipating that they will have to chip in later for repairs. This is another decision that can come back to haunt you. Home inspections which are required before a sale goes through will turn up your “dirty laundry” (or loose stair railings, leaky roof or basement moisture)  and could end up costing you more money down the road with credits to the buyer and/or losing a buyer altogether. Better to address the problems head-on when you are in charge of who’s doing the repairs and for how much. Then price your house accordingly, factoring those costs in.

7. Listing your house for less to account for the “condition” it’s in. Sometimes this strategy works and is necessary but in my experience, buyers have a hard time overlooking things. If at all possible, try to present your house in the best condition possible–clean, uncluttered and updated as much as possible. If you’re not in a position to do that, then be sure your listing price is discounted enough to enable buyers to see the potential and be willing to realize it. I can speak to this personally. Recently I tried selling a home I owned in an “as-is” condition with a price that reflected that, assuming the buyers would either tear it down or remodel. After a few months with no offers coming it, I took it off the market and fixed it up–painted, updated the kitchen, redid the hardwood floors, new carpets. When I put it back on the market at a much higher price I was able to recoup my updating costs and increase my profit considerably over what I would have made the first time around.

If you’re thinking of selling your home, I’d love to put my 25 plus years’ experience as a Realtor in Lake Oswego to work for you. Give me a call at 503.939.9801 and/or check out my website. Let’s meet and start our conversation with a comparative market analysis. Hope to talk with you soon.

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