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New art demonstrates Gig Harbor’s dedication to world peace

People walk around and view the Peace Pole after an unveiling ceremony Monday in front of the Gig Harbor Civic Center.
People walk around and view the Peace Pole after an unveiling ceremony Monday in front of the Gig Harbor Civic Center. jbessex@gateline.com

A new piece of art was unveiled Monday in Gig Harbor with a worldwide message for peace.

The Peace Pole, installed in the grass field opposite the Gig Harbor Civic Center, bears the message “May Peace prevail on Earth” in eight different languages.

Included in these languages is Lushootseed, the native language of the Salish Native American Tribes from this region.

The pole was constructed and donated by the Gig Harbor Midday Rotary Club as part of the club’s dedication to world peace, according to club president Howard Svigals.

“Peace has always been one of the fundamental things Rotary’s been about,” Svigals said. “This is really the club’s gift to Gig Harbor and the people of Gig Harbor.”

Club member Bob Anderson first introduced the peace pole idea to the club and is familiar with the history of the art.

The first Peace Pole was started in 1955 by a Japanese philosopher looking to create a symbol for peace around the world.

Present at the unveiling of the Peace Pole was Connie McCloud, the cultural director and an elder with the Puyallup Tribe.

“As we care for the Earth and we care for the water, so do we care for each other. That is the purpose of peace,” McCloud said.

The Peace Pole was unveiled by Svigals and Mayor Jill Guernsey and is open to the public.

Andrea Haffly: 253-358-4155, @gateway_andrea

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