Here’s the background. On June 12th, Realtor Bryan Tillung read a letter to the editor in the "Curry Coastal Pilot", written by Brookings resident, Noreen Foster. In her letter she presented to the Mayor of Brookings a question concerning the "Welcome to Brookings" billboard at the north end of town by the mill. “Over the next few days," Tillung said, "I couldn't stop thinking about Noreen's words she had written with such trepidation. A few days later, I decided to drive out to the location of the billboard, to take a look for myself, at its present state. Realizing that first impressions are remembered, I wondered how soon visitors to our wonderful town, would forget us, or worse yet, not want to return.” [Or very likely just drive right on through without stopping to explore a town that is represented by an aging and decaying welcome sign .]
“My initial thought was to be that "volunteer", Noreen spoke of, and simply touch up the faded and splintering paint. Standing on the soft shoulder of Hwy 101 and Carpenterville, in a bold attempt to size up the project, I turned and looked in the direction leading into Brookings; then turning, looking in the opposite direction. Then it struck me... ‘A project of this magnitude needs to be shared with the community’. I also realized, in order to pull off a successful restoration, it would take community involvement and a team of dedicated, skilled crafts persons”.
Bryan contacted the city, South Coast Lumber and the Chamber of Commerce, who referred him to the Pelican Bay Arts Association for help. There seems to be no ownership of the sign!
Back to the present… Bryan contacted PBAA President Lorelei Hanna, who immediately saw this community need as an exciting opportunity. She has spoken with many others who expressed enthusiasm for the project. PBAA has been given the opportunity to redesign and upgrade the sign. A meeting to “set in motion, a structured plan outlining events that would need to take place in order to be successful in this endeavor” is scheduled for July 12 at 10 am at Manley Art Center. Kerr’s Ace Hardware will donate all the paint, brushes and needed supplies. Bryan has already received offers of donations of funds to commission a sculpture artist to help enhance the project. A small “garden” area to surround the sign is being considered. The project also includes a fresh coat of paint for the welcome sign at the south end of town and possibly restoring the sea gull. What are your ideas?
Bryan urges us: “As mentioned in Noreen's letter, ‘Let's do what we can to show how friendly this little town truly is’”.
Come to MAC on Monday, July 12 at 10 am to learn more and include your ideas in the development of this project. Call Lorelei Hanna at 541-469-5368 for more information.
Manley Art Center
433 Oak Street
Brookings, OR 97415