Farm Horizons, October 2013

Say hello to the Peaceful People

By Starrla Cray

The people in Laura Dimler’s pumpkin patch on Highway 7 and Carver County Road 10 (near the roundabout) are pretty easygoing.

They don’t require food or water, and they never complain. As their cheerful yellow sign indicates, the 50 figures in the field truly are “peaceful people.”

It started with 25 of the peaceful scarecrows, created by Laura’s parents, Chuck and Ursula Dimler of Chanhassen, and two friends, Larry and Charlene Knorr of Waconia.

“The four of them took three days of their time,” Laura said. “They did it as a birthday gift for me.”

However, when Laura first saw the people in her field, she didn’t pay much attention.

“I assumed they were people taking a tour, so I didn’t even look,” she said. “I really thought there were people out in my field.”

Laura eventually figured it out, and enjoyed the peaceful scarecrows so much, she decided to add more.

She hosted a two-hour contest in her field Sept. 21, involving members of a local Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Each participant had the opportunity to create a peaceful person, and four winning families (Johnson, Peden, Holland, and Plaziak) received locally produced honey.

Laura opened her pumpkin patch to the public Sept. 22, and visitors are welcome to take a closer peek at the peaceful additions to the field.

Laura’s parents got the idea for Peaceful People from a similar exhibit at the Erickson Center for the Arts in Curtis, MI. This year, the center has more than 100 wooden “people” outside, wearing everything from fishing T-shirts to glittery pink wigs.

According to the Erickson Center for the Arts website, Curtis residents Karen and Bill Mundinger came across the idea while traveling through Europe.

In a field north of Suomussalmi, Finland, there are about 1,200 scarecrows known as “The Silent People.” According to a travel blog by Jamal Masood of India, “The Silent People” were created by artist Reijo Kela in 1988, and were moved to their current location in 1994.

The blog states that the artist will not provide an explanation of his idea, and instead wants the viewer to form a personal conclusion.

To learn more about Laura’s pumpkin patch on Highway 7, call her at (612) 747-0319.

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