Witness the Beauty Ceremony
It was a happy celebration on Sunday in Sunken Park when the mural “Witness the Beauty” by artist Jake Wagoner of Seattle was dedicated. A beautiful day, chamber music from the bandstand, a prize-winning poem read by Bill Weissinger, and an appreciative crowd complemented the visual art. It’s a continuation of the Town’s efforts to improve our enjoyment of the park.
On Sunday, May 22nd, members of the community, the Town Council, and even passing tourists came to “Witness the Beauty”.
Jake “Dkoy” Wagoner, the Seattle-based artist, presented his mural at the ceremony in Sunken Park. Wagoner gave a small speech at the event.
“Thank you everybody for coming out. This is an idea that I’ve actually had for about three years now, so its really cool to see it come to life. I’m glad I’m getting a lot of good response from the town and everybody who’s stopped by. So thank you guys.”
Wagoner is a designer and muralist who gets “inspiration from the universe, animals, nature, and the connection between us”. His art, design, and murals reflect strong imagery that honor his subjects. (Bio from Jake’s website)
Here is a brief bio on Wagoner and the mural from last week on the San Juan Update… Witness the Beauty.
Also featured at the ceremony was Bill Weissinger, winner of the Sunken Park poetry contest sponsored by the Friday Harbor Arts Commission. Bill read his poem “What You Don’t Want To Do” to celebrate and honor the beauty of San Juan Island.
Here’s his poem in case you missed it before:
What You Don’t Want To Do.
When the camas are blooming sapphire or fawn lilies hide in white patches, you don’t want to drive down Bailer Hill to find glacier-clad Mount Baker reaching out for you,
but if you do drive down Bailer Hill, don’t turn right on Little Road and right again on Cattle Point, because that will take you to American Camp,
but if you go to American Camp, don’t smell the shoals of Nootka rose or walk the miles of beach-logged gravel where always you’ll find solitude enough to listen to the whissshhhh of waves washing against that tightness in your chest,
but if you’re gentled by the waves, still ignore across the Salish Sea the white Olympic peaks, tinged pink perhaps by the setting sun,
but if you are unlucky enough to see this mountain range in alpenglow, don’t listen in the faltering light for whale-breath.
If, spiting my best counsel, you’ve heard the whoosh of whales as the dusk tides carry our sunset west, go back from whence you came. You think I’m kidding, but I’m not. Really,
since if next morning you’re still here, you might drive to Whale Watch Park, in which case don’t walk downhill, because that will take you to more eagles, and maybe Orcas breaching, likely schools of porpoise, salmon jumping, seals, or red-beaked pink-legged black-bodied Oystercatchers, and always a lighthouse, it too warning you off.
And don’t walk uphill, because that will take you through quiet paths in private woods with ravens, pileated woodpeckers, chickadees, and Kinglets in the red-trunked madronas and the firs, and if you know what’s good for you, you won’t just stand in the parking lot, talking to visitors from Germany or China or France or to any locals either for that matter, all having forgotten their aloofness back on the mainland and so happy to chat,
but if you do go to the Park, on leaving don’t head north to English Camp, with more shore and quiet woods and what the Islanders call a mountain, which you should not climb though it’s an easy hike of only twenty-minutes, because – and now we’re to the nub – from Mount Young’s top you’ll see not only Henry Island, not merely Vancouver Island and Salt Spring, but all the way back home,
and if you can see all the way home, you’ll realize you are seeing in a circle, that home is San Juan Island now. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Mayor Carrie Lacher concluded the ceremony,
“By the power vested in me as mayor of the Town of Friday Harbor, I do hereby proclaim this a beautiful day in the town. I hope that you go forth and witness the beauty however you may experience it. Whether it’s visual, the written word, music, the sound of whales, but I hope you all take a moment today to appreciate and witness the beauty that is all around us. Thank you again.”