Story poles on Chemawa Rd. receive dedication

Michele Roland-Schwartz (from left), Beth Melendy and Kim Steen dedicate the Story Poles at Keizer Civic Plaza on Saturday, Sept. 18.

A six year project came to fruition on Saturday, Sept. 18, when two carved story poles in were officially dedicated in Keizer Civic Plaza. The idea of turning two trees near the end of their life into story poles came from Keizer Public Works Director Bill Lawyer over six years ago.

A small group gathered as Keizer Public Art Commission members Michele Roland-Schwartz and Kim Steen each dedicated a story pole.

Mayor Cathy Clark spoke of the art commission’s dedication to the years-long project.

The first pole was carved by Kevin and Tyler Stauslin of Oregon 3D Art and Chainsaw Sculptures. The design includes representations of the American and City of Keizer flags, a beaver, and a Chinook salmon. The pole is topped with the original bell of the Keizer School building, which is now the Keizer Cultural Center, sitting on the Keizer Civic Center campus.

The second pole was carved by artist James Lukinich and is topped with a wood cabin that represents the Wallace house, the first known white settlement in the area. Wallace House Park is located in southwest Keizer. The pole also features irises, grapes, hops and a river.

The two story poles stand in front of the Keizer Civic Center on Chemawa Road NE near the Thomas Dove Keizer statue.