PORTLAND The popular annual Sunday Parkways series will begin on May 22 this year, in East Portland.

The East Portland route will connect Lents, Bloomington, Ed Benedict and Gilbert Heights Parks with seven miles of traffic-free streets and a long section of the Springwater Trail. Sunday Parkways is a community event which fills the streets with activities, music and vendors from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The public should expect traffic control changes in the vicinity of the event and be aware of increased numbers of pedestrians and bicyclists, said Cheryl Kuck, a spokeswoman for the Portland Bureau of Transportation. Residents will have access to their homes and can cross the route at the designated intersections.

Special activities will include a mini-disc golf course in Ed Benedict Park, a Kids Fair at Gilbert Heights Park, dance classes at Ed Benedict and Lents Parks, and soccer clinics at Bloomington Park.

The major goals of Sunday Parkways are to connect Portlanders to their neighbors and encourage active transportation and physical activity, Kuck added.

Organizers with the Portland Bureau of Transportation, Kaiser Permanente and Metro will host five Sunday Parkways events in 2011. For more information about those upcoming events, or to volunteer, check the Sunday Parkways Web site or call 503-473-3547.

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