about us


about the friends

Friends of the Portland Memory Garden was informally founded in 2001 as a small group of volunteers and was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 2008. During the interim years, our web site was maintained through the kind efforts of the Center of Design for an Aging Society.  We extend our special thanks to them  and encourage you to visit their site at www.centerofdesign.org.



Claire O’Laughlin, PhD

Vice President

Brian Bainnson, ASLA


Tara Hicks, HTR


Kathleen Kennedy, BS, HTA

Board Members

Julie Brown, HTR

Patty Cassidy, MA, HTR

Christopher Mandeville
Gary Miranda

Mailing Address

PO Box 16831

Portland, OR 97292

The Portland Memory Garden is located at SE Powell Blvd and SE Bush Avenue

The Portland Memory Garden is a demonstration garden project created as part of the “100 Parks, 100 Years” centennial celebration of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Of the eight Memory Gardens that were built as part of this celebration, only one other is located in a city park.

The Development Team

Many different organizations came together to make this garden a reality: The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), the Alzheimer’s Association, The Center of Design for an Aging Society, Legacy Health System, Portland Bureau of Parks and Recreation, and the Institute on Aging/School of Urban Studies and Planning at Portland State University. The team also worked closely with the area’s neighborhood associations to develop a design that was responsive to the needs of their community.

The team was particularly strong because of the cooperation of many different disciplines, including landscape architects and designers with prior design experience in planning sensory and therapeutic gardens, as well as a horticultural therapist and an environmental psychologist, a specialist in design for older adults, and experts in Alzheimer’s disease.

A Community Comes Together

One always hopes that a project like the Portland Memory Garden can bring together those who see its value and simply want to be part of making it happen. More than 50 local suppliers and contractors donated their services, along with three youth programs: The Boy Scouts, Youth Builders, and AIM High School.

The garden is a true testimonial to what can happen when diverse public, private, and non-profit organizations, and individual volunteers come together in the spirit of creating a better community.


About the Garden


For a 6-minute slide tour of the Garden with narrative CLICK HERE.