Something New Along the Byway
Installation of fourteen interpretive panels is nearly complete. Not just your ho-hum informational panel, Paul Bunyan himself puts his folksy, bigger-than-life spin on these stories of the area. The panels present just the right mix of Paul Bunyan lore and area historical truth blended together to produce cleverly intriguing text.
From the history of the Crosslake Corps of Engineers site to a rendition of how the resorts got started, the panels, located at various sites along the route, provide travelers and residents with a fun day trip or an enjoyable quick stop if they want to read just one or two. Local writer, Dave Skyberg, has developed the stories to highlight the significance of each location while also weaving in the winking wit of Paul Bunyan along with a concluding invitation to visit the next panel because there’s more “lore to explore”.
Panels are housed in roofed kiosks and framed with wooden borders, making them easy to spot for Byway travelers. Information on the locations of the fourteen panels will be available at local Chambers of Commerce offices when the project is completed later this summer.
This project is supported by Crow Wing County and several local businesses and residents. Sponsorships have been received for several of the panels as well. Each panel sponsor will be recognized with an attractive sponsorship name plate that will be located on the kiosk itself. Sponsorships have been confirmed from the following businesses and organizations: Pequot Lakes Physical Therapy Services, Inc; Whitefish Area Lodging Association; Lakes State Bank; Bruce Bundgaard Law Office/KLKS; JM Plein Consulting, Ideal Township and the Pine River Chamber of Commerce.
Since the Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway received national designation in September, 2005, it has become part of a select group of only 125 other byways across the nation known collectively as America’s Byways. The federal government markets this collection of premier byways both nationally and internationally. The curious can view the national website’s selected information and photos about the Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway at www.byways.org.