Upon first impression, Eugene’s Friendly neighborhood appears to be one severely divided.
On one hand, it’s family oriented. Parks, picnic areas and signs of childhood are abundant:
Tire swing found at Westmoreland park. The park includes multiple playgrounds, a jogging track and Amazon pool for family recreation.
A stuffed frog wrapped around a tree in the Oregon Community Credit Union parking lot off of 29th Ave.
Yet, amidst the family atmosphere lurks an unspoken economic and social underbelly.
St. Vinnies donation truck stationed at the corner of Willamette and 29th.
Tagging is rampant within the Friendly neighborhood. Parks, fences and buildings all bear the mark of graffiti artists.
Ultimately, the neighborhood’s most iconic landmark – Civic Stadium – stands as a powerful representation of the area’s pervasive tone: family orientation, hindered by economic difficulty. Or perhaps, economic difficulty, made more bearable by an unbreakable familial affection.
Civic Stadium, an old baseball park sandwiched between Willamette and Amazon near 18th Ave, is a controversial Eugene landmark. Debate rages over whether or not the stadium should stand as a historic landmark of the days before PK Park, or whether it should be re purposed for recreational or commercial use.