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Unique tree carvings add to Centerville Community Park
by Becky Ginos
Nov 23, 2017 | 1107 views | 0 0 comments | 70 70 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Brent Lowry works on carving a dog from an old tree stump in Centerville Community Park.
Brent Lowry works on carving a dog from an old tree stump in Centerville Community Park.

CENTERVILLE—Among the usual cottonwoods and willow trees at Centerville Community Park, if visitors look closely they might just spot a dog, raccoon, bear or an owl with its two babies. No, they’re not real. They are beautiful wood carvings done by West Jordan artist Brent Lowry.

“For over a year we had a great big white stump,” said Centerville Parks Supervisor Bruce Cox. “Delores Hazzard, a woman who lives by it and walks her dog along the path asked what was going to happen to it and ask if we’d thought about carving it. She said if we could find out how much it would cost she would donate the money for it.”

Cox said he started Googling wood carvers and Lowry’s name came up. “He’d done some amazing stuff. But when he came out to look at the stump it had actually rotted out so he couldn’t do it,” he said. “But we had some cottonwoods and they have a short life span, so we’d been planting new trees in between those. Half of them (old trees) were dead and needed to be cut down. Then we would ground out the stumps. We decided next time to save them and it worked out this year because we had a few to cut down.”

So Cox had Lowry come out again. “He asked what we wanted him to carve,” said Cox. “A while back we found a baby screech owl in the park and rescued it. We thought it would be neat if he carved that. People also walk their dogs and we also have a lot of raccoons, then he also incorporated sports balls from the three main sports played here at the park.”

The dog sculpture is holding a softball, the raccoon a soccer ball and the bear a football. “Hopefully people will be able to tell,” said Lowry of the carvings. “The owl with the baby owls is what Delores picked.”

Lowry created the carvings with a chainsaw. “I’ve been carving for 50 years,” he said. “I was just doing sculpting and stuff and added the chain saw about 25 years ago.”

Hazzard donated about $1,500 for the project and Lowry cut his cost to contribute as well. “The quotes for the cost of grinding the stump and fixing the hole would have been about the same as carving them into something,” said Cox. “So for the money we would have spent on stump grinding having them carved is not much more cost to the city.”

It takes a few hours to complete a carving but Lowry is proud to be part of the project. “I think this will add to the park,” he said. “It’s a shame the trees were coming down. You’ve got to take them out or they could fall. It’s a great thing she’s (Delores) doing. There will also be benches for people to sit on and watch the kids play or just rest. I’ve had a lot of comments as I’ve been working. It’s been fun.”

Cox is happy to see the old stumps being made into something useful too. “If it had not been for her encouraging me it wouldn’t have been done.”

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