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New sign on Main St. comes to life after months of planning

Staff writer

An electronic sign at the intersection of Main and Elm Sts. was turned onThursday after months of planning and fundraising.

City electricians completed wiring from the sign base to the sign itself Aug. 28, but when the switch was thrown, the sign did not light. Workers came back Thursday to recheck all its connections and reconnect wiring.

Shortly before noon Thursday, the switch was thrown again and the sign came to life.

The sign was purchased with $20,000 donations from community sponsors.

Besides “welcome to Marion,” the sign will announce community events and the time, date, and temperature.

PRIDE committee member Gene Winkler, who designed the messages for the sign, said major sponsors would be recognized with rotating time, date, and temperature listings.

PRIDE committee member Margaret Wilson said announcements would be permitted on the sign only if they meet guidelines. One of the guidelines is that the announcement is of global community interest. For example, a sale at a store will not be permitted.

If there will be a charged for an announcement, it will be $3 per day, Winkler said.

“It’s going to be case-by-case,” Wilson said. “We have two pages of regulations we’re going to be really careful about what we host on there, By and large it will be a global community announcement.

The regulations are very specific. We’ll put Chingawassa and Old Settlers Day on it, but other announcements will be decided.”

Others involved with the sign are happy the project is finished.

“I’m just thrilled to death with it,” PRIDE member Sally Hannaford. “It’s a great addition. We thank Gene for helping with it.

City administrator Roger Holter said a 24 by 25-inch plaque will be added later to list all major donors.

Last modified Sept. 4, 2019

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