Editorial: Honking Tree art is out of placeDon’t worry, they didn’t think that much about it. Two Harbors City Council members know a third rail when they see one, and the Honking Tree is in that electric category.
Don’t worry, they didn’t think that much about it. Two Harbors City Council members know a third rail when they see one, and the Honking Tree is in that electric category.
People around here love it or hate it – or are just tired of hearing about it. No matter the feeling, council members would prefer having nothing to do with it to avoid controversy. That’s understandable.
But much more thought should have gone into the decision Monday to carve a likeness of the Split Rock Lighthouse from the salvaged trunk of the Honking Tree.
The reasoning is sound. The tree was a symbol to residents across Lake County and depicting the Two Harbors Lighthouse might look a bit like putting ownership on it. The city simply stepped up. The tree didn’t grow in city limits but Mayor Bolen and council members took the lead anyway.
That’s to be appreciated. What needs to be a bit more thought out is the location of John Gage’s finished chainsaw sculpture. Put it across from Dairy Queen in the heart of Two Harbors and all you will do is confuse people. At the intersection of Waterfront Drive and Seventh Avenue (Hwy. 61) there are signs pointing to the lighthouse on Agate Bay.
If the goal is to trick geography-challenged people into thinking Split Rock is near downtown Two Harbors, then mission accomplished.
And promoting an attraction 15 miles away in the heart of a city begging people cruising through to stop is just not a good idea.
It’d be better to place the sculpture on the eastern edge of town on Highway 61 next to one of those signs promoting Two Harbors as the gateway to the North Shore. There, Split Rock makes sense. It’s easily one of the biggest attractions to draw people through town.
If the intent is to honor all Lake County residents’ memories of the Honking Tree, it should remain outside of the city, like the tree itself, in a prominent spot for those coming from the south.
So, one more vote guys, then you can wash your hands of it. Put this memorial where it should be.