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ERIE COUNTY, OH – World Peace Pole Project Comes to Erie County

May 24, 2010

On Saturday May 15th, 20 people gathered to witness a peace pole ‘planting’ on the property of William (Bill) Wright on the corner of Tiffin Avenue and Pearl Street, Sandusky, Ohio. It was also a birthday celebration for Bill Wright, the town’s oldest peace and justice advocate at 96. “It may seem like a small thing,” said Wright, “but it’s a sign to remind people to keep peace alive.” The pole which is circled by a ring of spring flowers is adjacent to the playground of Holy Angels Catholic Church and school.

Members of the area’s Voices for Peace and Justice Group, active for 25 years, were in attendance and helped to finance the project as part of the World Peace Pole Project.

200,000 peace poles have been planted over three decades in 200 countries, and they have been blessed by such peace advocates as President Jimmy Carter, Mother Theresa, Bishop Tutu, the Dalai Lama, and several Popes. The simple message  of “May Peace Prevail on Earth” appears on the red cedar poles in four or eight languages. The new pole in Sandusky appears in English, Spanish, Italian, and Hebrew. The dedication ceremony included reciting the message in various languages, a poem reading by Ann Smith, and the singing of “Blowin’ in the Wind,” “This Land Is Your Land,” and “Joe Hill.” Following the dedication the group gathered at a local coffeehouse for more singing and poetry and a birthday-peace cake.

Other peace poles in the area are at parks and school grounds and at the United Church of Christ on Columbus Avenue and the Episcopal Church on the town’s east side. Said Mr. Wright, “I’d like to see these poles planted all over the county and world.”


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