A pole by any other name...
It’s been six years since two people crept onto the lawn of the fire station at Hillsboro Boulevard and Federal Highway and left behind a manger scene. The one they installed replaced a larger, life-sized one -- mysteriously gone after annual appearances for many years.
Jewish residents protested about a lack of representation and a menorah appeared soon after.
On Thursday, a third totem appeared on the lawn. It sits between the fire station and the nativity and consists of a slender pole made entirely of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer cans.
City officials could not be reached for comment. City Attorney Andy Maurodis said he would have to research the history of the pole.
Resident activist Chaz Stevens happily shared that history. He says he won permission from elected officials to install an eight-foot-tall Festivus pole amidst the religious symbols on city property, which he described as an unadorned metal pole with no lights or tinsel, about six- to eight-feet tall.
When it came to making the pole, however, Stevens and a friend drained 23 cans of beer, then sawed the ends off the cans using a band saw equipped with a diamond-tipped metal blade. The cans were threaded onto a pole. The pole was secured to a stand made of crossed boards and – voila – an unadorned metal pole with no lights or tinsel, no decorations, made entirely of aluminum.
Of course, so is the pole itself. But, says Stevens, “That would not get as much attention as eight feet of Pabst Blue Ribbon conveniently installed six feet from baby Jesus.”
Stevens points out that is display is environmentally friendly, since it can be recycled – something city officials may be eager to test.