Photo by Barbie Porter
The late Paul Eppling, artist, built the metal moose. I support the idea of naming the scenic area officially the Moose Pond in his honor.

At the public meeting about the skating rink location, the fenced area where the retention pond is located was called a name I had not heard—The Moose Pond.

I’ve heard it called the goose pond and the duck pond, but never the Moose Pond. I love it! I hope the city leaders consider officially dubbing the area, “Moose Pond Park.”

For those that don’t know, the moose at the retention pond was made by Paul Eppling, who died in 2016. He left lauded pieces of public cart all around the country, with several pieces in their winter hometown of St. Petersburg, Fla. 

Eppling summered in Frazee with his wife Sandy. He fell in love with the bedroom community and asked community members to bring him a piece of metal that had some personal history, a deep meaning or personal attachment. As people donated pieces, Eppling learned about the residents. 

In the end he created a piece of artwork that was made with the help of the community and tells the story of its residents.

Yes, I love art. I think art inspires, gives perspective, changes perspective, creates mystery, draws emotion …  

While the name of the pond on Eppling’s dedication plaque says “goose pond,” I have never seen a goose on that pond in my 15 years as part of the community. I’ve seen the messy birds drop their filth at the public beach several years, but never at the pond. Geese  are so abundant that if I were a tourist and saw something named the “Goose Pond” it would not draw my interest at all. 

I’ve always preferred Duck Pond because plenty of ducks have taken up residency there during my time living/working in the city. I like ducks … mostly on my plate in an orange sauce … and unless I was able to pick a duck and have it delivered to Ketter’s for a meal later that week, I probably wouldn’t go to the pond as a tourist. 

If the area had seating and was open to the public, then ducks and their quacks would create an ambiance that would be appealing to some residents who might want step out of the office or home for lunch or friendly visit.

While most years a duck or two does show up, a moose is always present. If I were on a road trip and pulled off for a picture with the World’s Largest Turkey, only to find a kiosk pointing out there is a Moose Pond down the road, I would take a mosey over there. Visitors may envision a moose walking around the area. When they arrive and learn the Moose is a storied piece of art, I think most would appreciate that more than an animal that may or may not be at the pond when they visit.

Back when the group that came through town with a vision of how to enhance the city aesthetics, they saw that area as a little treasure. I’m glad we have grown and tackled more pressing projects that we are now at the point that enhancing that area is an option.

I’m also glad the council and those planting the raised garden beds were able to work out a way for both uses to be achieved. I think the raised garden bends and butterfly/natural grass garden areas would enhance that little gem.