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On the Light Side

December 28, 1987

CINCINNATI (AP) _ A sculptor says bronze, winged pigs would be a fitting tribute for the bicentennial of a city once dubbed ″Porkopolis,″ but some of the respondents to a local poll say the idea’s just hogwash.

″This is an embarrassment to the entire area and will make us the laughingstock of the whole country,″ said Marian Benz of Cincinnati, one of dozens of residents who wrote a local newspaper opposing the statues.

Mineapolis sculptor Andrew Leicester decided to include figures of flying pigs as part of a lighthearted display in a park that will open in June as part of Cincinnati’s bicentennial celebration. Leicester wants to put the figures atop pillars representing riverboat smokestacks by the park entrance.

He noted that the city won the nickname ″Porkopolis″ because of its meatpacking history.

A Cincinnati Post poll received more than 100 evenly divided responses.

″I vote a definite ‘yes’ for the flying pink pigs,″ said Jane Cochran of Rabbit Hash, Ky. ″Society needs more humor, whimsy and creativity in its life.″

″Why should anyone be embarrassed?″ wrote Theresa Conover of Milford.

But Lucille Brodbeck of Cincinnati wrote: ″Pigs are in our history ... but we are not pigs today.″

And Charlotte Kruse wrote: ″Pigs certainly did play an important role in Cincinnati’s history and should have some representation. However, to have pigs so prominent in the sculpture leaves our great city wide open for ridicule.″


BEAVER ISLAND, Mich. (AP) - A yellow cottage awash in a sea of red tape has finally reached shore.

The cottage, docked on Beaver Island in northern Lake Michigan, made a 200- mile journey from the city of Holland to get here.

″It’s going to be a real good home for her,″ said Bud Martin, an excavating contractor who plans to tow the two-story cottage to the north end of the island for his brother Ernie, who arranged the deal.

The saga of the cottage began when contractor Paul VanHuis bought it and made plans to move it from Holland to a resort in Ottawa County. Residents said moving the cottage by land might damage trees, so VanHuis decided to barge it across Lake Macatawa in mid-October.

The house never made it to the resort, however. Officials said it was structurally unsound and violated township zoning ordinances.

So the cottage remained moored until Wednesday, when it was towed across Lake Macatawa, through Holland Channel and into Lake Michigan.

The trip has cost VanHius $38,500, including rental of the barge from Lake Michigan Contractors Inc. in Holland.

In a deal that seemed to please everyone, Ernie Martin plans to swap property he owns where the cottage will be placed with Jose Walsh, president of Lake Michigan Contractors, who owns the barge. Walsh in turn will sell the lot to VanHuis, leaving Ernie Martin with the barge - which he wants in order to get into the marine hauling business.

″This time of year is kind of slow, so people will talk about anything,″ said Beaver Island resident Carolyn Esch. ″They’ve brought mobile homes over on barges and stuff like that. This is the first time they’ve had a house on one.″

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