Lumberjack Geno Cummings, Frederic, WI., raced to the top of a tall, wooden pole during a climbing demonstration with another lumberjack, Mike Sharp, Glens Falls, N.Y. (not pictured) at Lumberjack Days.
Jim Gehrz, Star Tribune
Stillwater officials want festival name changed
- Associated Press
- January 25, 2014 - 4:21 PM
STILLWATER, Minn. — Stillwater city officials are asking organizers of a new summer music festival to change the name, saying it could be construed as vulgar.
City Administrator Larry Hansen emailed festival organizer Cassie McLemore on Thursday to request that the Stillwater Log Jam find another name, but McLemore called the request "ridiculous."
McLemore told the St. Paul Pioneer Press that the festival's name fits with the city's history of a logging community. She also said her group tried to lease the name "Lumberjack Days" from the nonprofit Lumberjack Days Festival Association but couldn't reach an agreement.
Mayor Ken Harycki said a resident recently contacted him with concerns over the phrase.
"We were made aware — how can I put this delicately? — that the name was a vulgar reference that we would prefer not to have associated with a family event in the city," Harycki said. "We don't want to be the laughingstock of the nation."
McLemore said her group, the Locals, does not plan to change the name, noting it was in the group's proposal that the Stillwater City Council approved last fall.
"Honestly, I mean how ridiculous do you have to be?" she said. "Are we 14-year-old boys? Seriously. Ninety-nine percent of the people, that wouldn't even cross their minds. Why make a mountain out of a molehill? I think we're just a little too sensitive."
She said organizers can't afford any delays over the name of the event.
"We need to have a website, we need to have social media," she said.
Harycki said Saturday that he will leave the final decision to the council. He expects members to finalize the festival's contract at a Feb. 12 meeting. While he believes there's a better name for the festival, he said he won't fight it if the council is OK with it.
"I will not fall on my sword on this one," he said. "If they want to do it, they can do it."
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