Week 4 – Peanuts for Pleasure

Not a surprise to people who know me, but I haven’t ever really grown up.  I am still a child at heart, big time.  Though I can be mature and serious, I love having silly moments of fun.  I still try to do things that entertained me when I was in elementary school, because to be honest, they are still WAY fun!  One of the things that I do, along these lines, is read comics.

Now, I’m not referring to comic books.  I mean, I do still read those.  I have a fairly large comic book collection.  Peter Parker is my best bud.  I am going to name many of my children after X-Men characters.  But no, I am currently referring to comic strips.  Like Dilbert or Calvin and Hobbes.

Now, fun fact: Charles Schulz, the creator of the Peanuts strip, was born and raised in the Twin Cities.  So to honor him, the city of St. Paul hosted something called “Peanuts on Parade” in 2000.  Originally, a total of 101 statues of Peanuts characters were strewn throughout the city.  However, after 2004, the city auctioned many of them off to support local artistic charities, as well as to commission several permanent bronze statues that would be in St. Paul city parks.  Some of the originals are still around the city.  But because they are now privately owned, there isn’t an official map of their locations anymore, nor a well known number of how many.  So for this adventure, a good friend of mine and I went out to look for the non-bronze ones!

It was quite the random trip.  We weren’t sure where many were.  We had a few hints from friends, but not many.  So here was our plan of action: we printed off the original map with the statues locations as of 2000 (12 years ago…).  We then went to the local businesses near the original locations and asked if they knew where any had ended up.  Needless to say, many random conversations were had (and almost all of them were awkward too).  But we found a total of eight statues in one Saturday afternoon, which I think was quite the success!  So here is some photo evidence of the achievements and a small description of how we found it:

The first two statues we tried to find were misses!  There were supposed to be two near the Ford Plant, but alas, none to be found!  However, as we were driving to our next location, we see a Snoopy doghouse on the side of the street next to a bookstore!  Random and awesome!

Our map indicates that there should be one at St. Catherine’s University.  As we check it out, we can’t find anything!  But a campus security guard, who at first looks at us strangely, calls over to her base for help once we explain our plight!  She directed us to the student union.  Inside, we asked the front desk where we could find one, and of course at an all girls university, we find Lucy!

We next head to a bar.  Yup, a bar!  There is supposed to be one at St. Paul’s famous O’Gara’s.  Inside, we ask the bartender if he knows where it ended up.  He directs us across the street to the lobby of a bank, where we found the jackpot!  Four total statues!

We then were close to one that two friends (Whitney and Trevor) had first hand knowledge of: one on the Hamline University campus.  This one was earier to find.

Our last statue was probably my favorite one.  The map said there would be on at the Saint Paul Saints Midway Stadium, and it was still there!  Baseball and comics; two of my favorite things!

Overall, a great Saturday afternoon.  But now that the hunt is on, I need to find more!