Earl Young - His Life and Legacy

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Charlevoix Courier, December 20, 1967

Santa must cheer
Earl Young's magic


Ever had cause to wonder what Santa thinks as he flits through the pre-dawn Christmas sky end looks down on all of Christiandom's communities?

For years I've played this game, from the nation's biggest city to its biggest mountains and in places I dreaded so terribly I couldn't learn to pronounce their names; wherever Christmas and I came together I ended up wondering what I would think of my surroundings if I had Santa's centuries of patient, objective wisdom and compassion.

As Santa's sleigh jingles across Little Traverse Bay this year he surely will emit a sigh that means something like; "It had to happen ... I knew it would."

HE MOST LIKELY won't be overly alarmed at the smog from Medusa's stack. Instead he will be quietly disappointed that it had to happen here. But at the same time resigned to the fact that people will always label their
greed progress and lack the indignation and courage to fight at all costs when wronged.

(Were he to make note of these scratchings he would know that a newspaper editor is wasting his ink.)

As the sleigh swings in low over Big Rock Point, preparing to settle on a rooftop at North Point, the reindeer behind Rudolph will blow gasps of shock and turn their heads, insisting that the red nosed one turn down the voltage.

Then Santa will tell them to lay off Rudolph ... the blinding glare they see is a new jet runway where Bridge St. used to be. Maybe he will reason that the dust from South Point darkened the downtown area so much that people could no longer see and new lights had to be installed.

The reindeer with the best nose may turn and tell Santa that water is more polluted than ever. But the old gent won't get in a dither over this. He knows that it happens everywhere. So why not Charlevoix?

But oh what reassurance he must feel when he nears the downtown area and sees that Earl Young's Weathervane and other boulder buildings have not been replaced by Howard Johnsons and duplexes.

As long as Charlevoix does not destroy the living magic Earl Young's artistry gave life to there is still something uniquely sweet and wonderous about Charlevoix that no other community on Santa's map can lay claim to.