Archive for Thursday, June 7, 2007

Council OKs site plan for namesake statue

June 7, 2007

The Eudora City Council approved the layout May 29 for the future home of the Eudora Fish statue.

The statue, cast by Lawrence artist Jim Brothers, will be located at the northeast corner of CPA Park facing toward the river.

The statue will depict the town's founder, Shawnee Indian chief Paschal Fish, embraced by his young daughter Eudora.

The statue is paid for by the combined effort of city funds and fund-raising programs sponsored by the Eudora Lions Club.

"It's going into its final stages, and it's gorgeous," Eudora City Administrator Cheryl Beatty said.

The statue's positioning reflects Paschal Fish's role as a ferryman, Beatty said.

"He spent a lot of his time down along the river," Beatty said.

The city's engineering consulting firm, BG Consultants, designed the site.

The statue itself will be 7.5 feet tall and will rest on a 3.5-foot tall base.

It will be placed in the center of an octagonal area and surrounded by both engraved memorial bricks and a different series of bricks.

The entire corner of the park will be refitted with new sidewalks including ADA access to the statue, Beatty said.

Part of the area will be covered by a two-foot retaining wall, Beatty said.

In front of the training wall, the city will supply two benches.

There also will be a display case highlighting the city's dual German and Native American heritages, Beatty said.

"That's very exciting. They incorporate the history of the town with this project," Beatty said.

The plan includes several lights to illuminate the statue.

"Eudora is going to get something very worthwhile," Beatty said.

In addition to covering the cost of the statue, local volunteers will donate time to help build the viewing area.

"We're trying to use as much local help as we can," Eudora Lions Club member Tom Tucker, who organized the Lions Club fund-raising events for the statue.

The statue itself should be sent to the foundry to be poured within the next two weeks, Beatty said.

The council gave unanimous approval of the site plan.

"I think this will be a lot for our city," Councilwoman Lori Fritzel said.

The council still needs to give approval to begin construction of the site, which Beatty predicted would start in July.

The unveiling of the statue will be Oct. 6, during the city's sesquicentennial celebration.

Shortly thereafter, a time capsule will be buried.

Tucker is collecting photos, personal effects, newspapers or anything that represents Eudora as of 2007 to place in the capsule.

He approached the council about burying the capsule near the statue site.

After looking at other alternatives, the site near the statue seemed best, he said.

"CPA Park is the right place for the time capsule to go," Tucker said.

It will be buried during what Tucker estimated would be a 45-minute ceremony and dug up again in 2057.

"In 50 years this will have a lot of meaning for people," Tucker said.

The council agreed unanimously to allow the capsule to be buried near the statue site.

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