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Southeast's best-known food cart pod is on S.E. 82nd at the Springwater Trail crossing -- but it got burgled

DAVID F. ASHTON - The following morning, there was still broken glass on the front counter of Amy Collins temporarily boarded up cookie-making cart, We Are Baked, from when several Cartlandia food carts were broken into by thieves. When midnight thieves smashed open the small shops at "Cartlandia", along S.E. 82nd Avenue of Roses, in the wee hours of August 25, they left several food cart owner-operators with devastating losses.

One of those was Amy Collins, the proprietor of cookie cart "We Are Baked".

"People from the Portland Police Bureau Forensic Division team came out and dusted for prints, and told me it's likely the perpetrator or perpetrators were wearing gloves, and also apparently did not leave any DNA behind," Collins told THE BEE.

"It cost me far more than the few dollars they stole – it left my place vandalized inside, with our front window smashed out, so I'll have to rebuild the whole front of my cart," Collins reflected.

She explained she's been in business for about a year, and moved to Cartlandia in February just as the COVID-19 coronavirus concerns began. "I'll find a way to, as they say, 'make lemonade out of life's lemons' and come out on top – because I must," vowed Collins. "This is how I feed my family and pay my bills! So, I'm going to have to rebuild, and do better."

No food taken

Cartlandia owner Roger Goldengay was surveying the damage on his lot that morning. "We had nine carts damaged by a person or persons who broke into them, looking to steal things," he said. "This was not done by a poor, hungry person seeking food; whoever it was didn't take any food. They were looking for spare change, computers, tablets, anything of value that they could sell.

"Hopefully, we'll catch these criminals; we do have video cameras all over, and we are doing an investigation with the help of the Portland Police," remarked Goldengay.

Loses day sanitizing kitchen

Working to replace parts on his broken door, Eddie Manjarres of "La Wawa" said that when the thieves got in, they found little of value in the cart, so virtually nothing was taken.

"But still, this damage really hurts us; instead of being open, serving customers and earning money for our family today, we're having to completely clean the inside of our cart from top to bottom, because we don't know what filth he may have left behind," Manjarres explained.

However, the "Cartlandia" food cart complex remains open, offering variety of food, and serving hungry customers. "Cartlandia" is at 8145 S.E. 82nd Avenue, where the Springwater Trail crosses 82nd. Find out more online – www.cartlandia.com


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