Community to celebrate Mr. Gresham unveiling

September 19, 2018

Long-time and beloved Gresham resident Todd Kirnan earned the nickname “Mr. Gresham” in his high school days, due to his unfailing kindness, good deeds and community spirit. Now, the Gresham community has come together, with donations large and small, to commission a bronze statue of Mr. Gresham. The art will be revealed at a community celebration and parade on Saturday, September 22 from 10 a.m. to noon in historic downtown Gresham.

Todd was diagnosed with autism shortly after birth and suffered through a rough childhood, including abuse and foster care. Today, Todd is a familiar face in downtown Gresham. His cheerful smiles, warm greetings and willingness to lend a helping hand endear him to local business owners. For the past 15 years, he’s worked helping downtown businesses with food and coffee deliveries, mailing letters, helping set out tables and chairs and anything else that is asked of him

“If you live in Gresham, odds are high that you’ve met Todd. He is a great example of Gresham’s amazing community spirit,” said Gresham Mayor Shane Bemis, who has been friends with Todd since high school. “We love Todd Kirnan, and we love what Todd Kirnan says about who Gresham is as a community.”

Gresham Outdoor Public Art led fundraising efforts to make the statue a reality and worked with the artist on the design. Heather Soderberg-Greene, who sculpted two other bronzes in downtown, will cast the bronze sculpture.

On September 22, a mini-parade, including police and fire vehicles as well as Portland Trail Blazers mascot Blaze and local high school cheer and dance teams, will escort Todd from Main City Park to downtown starting at 10 a.m. The first 50 to check in at NE 3rd and N Main will receive a free Gresham t-shirt, featuring a variety of illustrations of local parks and landmarks. The celebration will continue on NE 3rd Street between N Main and NE Roberts with an unveiling of the statue. Attendees can enjoy free coffee and bagels donated by Jazzy Bagel, free cupcakes donated by Sugar Cubed Cakes, 80s music and a photo booth with Todd-themed props. Celebrants can pick up a “Todd Passport” and visit local businesses to check out their “Todd Special of the Day” to be entered to win a $100 gift card bouquet.

The event is sponsored by Gresham Outdoor Public Art and City of Gresham.