Jack Purcell Park In Ottawa Honours The Wrong Jack Purcell

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Topical Press Agency via Getty Images
Topical Press Agency via Getty Images

Sometimes it really helps to double-check.

That is what the architects behind new art pieces in an Ottawa park probably thought when they realized the art honoured the wrong person.

Jack Purcell Park in the Centretown neighbourhood was named after a local man who mended hundreds of broken children's hockey sticks in the 1950s and 60s, but new art in the park actually honours Jack Purcell, the Canadian world champion badminton player.

The art installation features 10 curved light poles that look like badminton rackets, clearly not an homage to a community hockey supporter. Each pole cost the city close to $5000.

"I'm sure people are wondering what in heaven's name are these things," local councillor Diane Holmes told the Ottawa Citizen.

Holmes said the mistake was discovered before the architects installed the poles, so they removed the strings from the rackets and are now calling them "futuristic trees".

The city parks manager doesn't believe the poles were a screw-up. Dan Chenier told the Citizen he thinks many people don't think they look like badminton rackets at all, and they provide an "interesting feature" at two of the park's entrances.

Holmes told CFRA News she thinks this shows the city is out-of-touch with local history, but at least one resident thought it shows they're Harry Potter fans.

"I think the park by my house is installing a quidditch pitch," he wrote on Instagram.


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