So Minnesota: Pine City Voyageur Statue
This story originally aired on Aug. 8, 2022.
People from all across the country stop to see a towering landmark in Pine City.
The Voyageur Statue is a popular roadside attraction in Minnesota.
Its hardwood history dates back to the 1930s when the owner of Anoka Hotel had a giant redwood log brought from California to Minnesota as a tourist attraction.
Over the years, the large log passed through many hands until it was donated to Pine City in the early 90s.
“When you drive by this thing you don’t think it’s all that big, but when you get down here you realize it is that big,” Michael Sauer, who helped bring the statue to town said. “We were looking for some kind of a tourist attraction.”
City leaders reached out to world champion chainsaw sculptor Dennis Roghair of Hinckley. Roghair turned the 45 feet tall, eight feet around, 40-ton log into the Voyageur Statue. The statue Roghair created pays tribute to French and Native American fur traders that explored the region.
“He had the whole thing done in about three months,” Sauer said
The statue is known as the largest redwood sculpture in Minnesota and one of the largest in the country.