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Wild West Show featured at 6th annual Rossi Farms Barn Dance in Parkrose

Rossi family hosts annual fundraiser for Parkrose youth activities


Former KATU meteorologist, Rob Marciano poses with student volunteers at the 2002 Rossi Barn Dance.
Sorry, this year’s Rossi Farms Barn Dance won’t include a new installment in the saga of your favorite local wild west matinee idol, Parker Rose.

Still, the annual fundraiser-celebration from 6 p.m. to midnight July 12 does have a few things going for it.

Once again, the affair at Rossi Farms, Northeast 122nd Avenue and Shaver Street, offers all the barbecued chicken you can eat, plus green and potato salad, dessert and a soft beverage (the harder stuff is available at cost). Plus dancing from 7 p.m. on to music by the Last Rodeo Band, all this and more for $10. Proceeds go to the Parkrose Youth Activities Fund, which provides money for the youth football team, the Parkrose High School wrestling team, and the dance team and pep club, among other things - needed more than ever in this year of budget deficits and no spare cash.

And the great Parker Rose will even make a guest appearance.

For those new to the story, for two years running the Rossi Farms Barn Dance has featured the world premier of a locally produced western movie. In 2001, “The Legend of Parker Rose” told how the heroic frontier sheriff saved the town (and himself) from the evil designs of a corrupt rival. Last year, “James Prescott and the Legend of Parker Rose” told the continuing story of how a feud born in the Civil War played itself out in a battle for the community’s future. Produced and directed by Tom Mannen of Turkey Creek Productions, the films starred many of your friends and neighbors. “We decided to give it a rest for a year,” Joe Rossi, farm manager and barn dance host, told the Memo.

Tom Mannen (left) and Tom Bernard of Turkey Creek Productions will offer a live Wild West show at the 6th Annual Rossi Barn Dance, Saturday, July 12, from 6 p.m. to midnight for only $10.
In its place, however, Mannen and his friends have constructed a western town movie set at the farm, and they will perform a few short Wild West shows at the dance. “It will be good guys against the bad guys, something like the movie,” Rossi says. At this years event here will be a showing of the original “The Legend of Parker Rose.”

Mannen and Rossi took the playacting off the farm earlier this year, at a naming ceremony for Senn’s Dairy Park. Dressed as a sheriff, Mannen (who usually plays a bad guy) attempt to “arrest” retiring Portland Parks director Charles Jordan for considering naming the place Prescott Park and giving unwarranted respect to the bad (albeit fictitious) James Prescott. Rossi, who had led the campaign for the Senn’s Dairy name, intervened on Jordan’s behalf.

“We’ll have another movie next year,” says Rossi, who some say bears a resemblance to Parker Rose, and often performs the same kind of community service in a quieter way.

As one Hollywood production put it, “It’s all true - with a lie or two thrown in.”
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