Planting Shiraz Roses At the Washington Park Rose Garden


On May 17, 2017 the Portland Shiraz Friendship Community members planted Damask Roses emblematic of the favorite roses in the rose garden of Shiraz.  They will grace the flower beds next to the tennis court and bloom for years to come as a symbol of friendship between our two cities.  Marion Ward, Michael Alexander and Linda McKIm-Bell wield shovels to plant hope and friendship for the future.  We are grateful for all of your generous contributions!

The Steering Committee of the Portland Shiraz Friendship Community

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The Portland Shiraz Friendship Community Rose Project: Bringing Together the Rose Cities of Portland and Shiraz.

The Portland Shiraz Friendship Community has been busy developing plans and building connections to further our goal of a Sister City relationship between Portland and Shiraz, Iran.  Recently, through the kindness and vision of the curator of the Washington Park Rose Garden, Mr. Harry Landers, we have been offered a prominent spot in the Rose Garden to plant roses that are evocative of the roses found in the gardens in Shiraz.

To that end, we are donating twenty lovely Damask Roses, similar to the rose shown above. They will be planted alongside the Rose Garden tennis courts where they will grace a prominent place with commemorative plaques.

We know that you will enjoy being part of this friendship building event and will treasure  these roses in the years to come. We are pleased that this will be a living tribute to friendship between our two cities. We invite you to donate $40.00 to cover the costs of a rose and plaque.  If you wish to donate, please send a check to the American Iranian Friendship Council (AIFC) specifying Portland Shiraz Rose Project.

If you would like to attend a celebratory event at the Washington Park Rose Garden at blooming time this coming summer, please include your contact information.

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Portland Shiraz Potluck

Micky Ryan and John Olmstead hosted a potluck at their home for the Portland Shiraz Friendship Society to raise awareness of the Sister City project. Michel Alexander and Jackie Spurlock described the project to the assembled guests and answered questions.   There was a lot of interest and a number of the attendees volunteered to help and made contributions to sustain the effort.


Not surprisingly, there was lots of good Persian food.


Which was very much enjoyed by all.


It was a successful event.  Those attending were very interested in the project and the hope of improving relations between Iran and the U.S. through people-to-peole diplomacy.  They were also generous in providing contributions to support the effort.

Thanks, Micky and John

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Portland Shiraz at the Iranian Festival

ADC6F37B-2F52-41A1-BC14-1311046A4E64The Portland-Shiraz Friendship Community participated in the Iranian Festival held on Portland’s park blocks Saturday, August 6. The festival, which features Iranian music, food, crafts and information about Iran past and present, was attended by hundreds of people who walked among the various displays and chatted with the presenters.

Our Portland-Shiraz booth featured photos of Shiraz, a pamphlet explaining our project, and, of course, roses.  The booth was staffed by our volunteers, who engaged visitors to the booth about the Sister City program and the history of the effort to link the cities of Shiraz and Portland.  There was a great deal of interest, including people who had connections with Shiraz.  Over thirty people signed up to be kept abreast of activities associated with the Sister City program.  These connections give us hope that our person-to-person effort to link our cities will be successful



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An evening with Iranian-American Professionals

As part of the Association’s first steps in expanding a network of supporters and volunteers, on January 7, several members gave a presentation to the Iranian-American Professional Society of Oregon (IAPSO) during their monthly dinner at the Pasha restaurant in Lake Oswego.

Our very own Goudarz Eghtedar presented a chapter from his forthcoming documentary featuring the late Gretchen Kafoury, who served on Portland’s City Council and was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Iran in the 1960s, and Terrence O’Donnell, a Portland author who spent over a decade in Shiraz and is perhaps best known for his classic book Garden of the Brave in War: Recollections of Iran, revered as one of the finest accounts of Persian culture in English.

The reception was warm, and many IAPSO members have signed up to to volunteer.

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