New Day Herald

Peace Poles Are Present

Duluth, MN. – Peace poles are present! In the last six months 25 peace poles have been installed in neighborhood parks in the city of Duluth, Minnesota. My home town, a picturesque city of 80,000 people on the shores of Lake Superior, now has peace poles planted from one end of town to another – a length of 25 miles, with more to come!

This project started in January, 1999 when I got the idea of promoting peace in our city parks by erecting peace poles in as many parks as possible. I met with my colleagues at the Duluth Parks & Recreation Dept., and brought a sample pole to show them. The response was positive, and I received an initial order of 25 poles.

The different sites selected various slogans to go on the four sides of their poles. One side of each pole said, “PEACE IN THE PARK.” The other three sides had a variety of sayings, like, “PEACE IS PRESENT; PEACE PREVAILS; PEACE BEGINS WITH ME; SHARE THE PEACE; PEACE BE STILL,” and others.

A park dept. employee used a router to carve the lettering in each pole. Kids from different neighborhoods then painted the letters and decorated the poles. Over the last six months, our local papers have had four different articles on the peace poles, and photos of them being made and installed.

In September, I was at a peace festival and had two peace poles there for kids to paint. The response was great! People asked me how they could get peace poles at their schools and homes. With that, I approached the superintendent of schools with the idea of getting a peace pole at every school in Duluth and he was receptive! At the present time, two schools have really taken off with the idea.

Grant Elementary School had the entire school vote on the four slogans that were engraved on their peace pole, and the 6th graders painted it. It was dedicated on Martin Luther King Day at a school assembly, with over 300 people in attendance. The pole was also pictured in our local newspaper. The principal now wants this to be a yearly project, with each graduating 6th grade class to make a new peace pole for the school each year.

I can invasion this project spreading to other communities across our planet. It is a simple idea, but one that people readily support. The poles themselves are inexpensive to make. A 4x4x10 piece of treated lumber is about $12.50. The concrete is another $4.00, and the paint can be found in most homes in a basement or garage. The rest is volunteer labor for wording and decorating.

Are you interested in spreading this project to your community? Drop me an e-mail at and I will be glad to answer any questions you have.

In the meantime, keep Duluth in the Light for getting peace poles at all the schools, in front yards and businesses! Peace is indeed present.

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