GRESHAM, Ore. -- Gresham Mayor Shane T. Bemis will deliver his annual State of the City Address tomorrow, Wednesday, February 17.
The speech, considered one of Gresham's signature civic events, begins at 11:30 a.m. in the banquet room at Persimmon, 500 SE Butler Road. The luncheon will be held in conjunction with the Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce. The speech is delivered to an audience of City Councilors, community and neighborhood leaders, and residents. Attendees have the option of purchasing a plated lunch through the Chamber or enjoying complimentary refreshments in the additional free seats.
"The Chamber's mission is to serve and promote this community that we all love, and we are honored to co-host this important event for all the citizens of Gresham," said Warren Allen, Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce Board President.
This year's speech will focus on community livability, safety and economic development in Gresham. In last year's speech, Bemis spoke about his passion for Gresham's children and families, and his address this year will document some promising advancements in that arena, while speaking to the challenges and opportunities on the horizon.
"This is one of my favorite events of the year because we can come together as a community, celebrate our progress, collectively assess our needs and assets, and chart a path for the future," Bemis said.
This is the first year the State of the City has been held in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce. In previous years the speech has been at City Hall, Mount Hood Community College and Gresham High School. The start time and location vary from year to year to help accommodate new audiences.
The general public is encouraged to attend the State of the City Address; free seats are available. For those who cannot attend the daytime event, Mayor Bemis will do a second reading of the speech in the evening at 6 p.m. in Council Chambers at 1333 N.W. Eastman Parkway.
MetroEast Community Media will videotape the event, and a speech transcript will be posted at www.GreshamOregon.gov.
MEDIA NOTE: The content of the evening State of the City speech is the same as the 11:30 a.m. event. For the best interview and photo opportunities, members of the media are encouraged to attend the luncheon.