Have you seen Nutty Narrows Squirrel Bridge? Well, San Francisco has its cable cars. Seattle has its Space Needle. And, Longview Washington has its squirrel bridge. The bridge, across Olympia Way near Civic Center circle has attracted international attention and is now a local landmark.
The Nutty Narrows Bridge was built in 1963 by a local builder, the late Amos Peters, to give squirrels a way to cross the busy thoroughfare without getting flattened by passing cars.
The original bridge was built over Olympia Way on the west edge of the library grounds. Before the bridge was conceived and built, squirrels had to dodge traffic to and from the Park Plaza office building where office staff put out a nutty feast for the squirrels. Many times, Peters and others who worked in and near Park Plaza witnessed squirrels being run over.
It didn’t take long before reports of squirrels using the bridge started. Squirrels were even seen escorting their young and teaching them the ropes. The story was picked up by the Associated Press, and Nutty Narrows became known in newspapers all over the world. Animal lovers in London, Minnesota and California sent newspaper clippings, fan mail and bags of nuts to Peters. One man wrote, “Little men take time to cater to big people who might do them good. Only big men pause to aid little creatures.”
In 1983, after 20 years of use, Peters took down the worn-out bridge. Repairs were made and crosspieces were replaced. The faded sign was repainted and in July 1983, furry guests from Disneyland (Chip and Dale and Mickey Mouse), local dignitaries, and 300 children rededicated the bridge. To read the whole Nutty Narrows Squirrel Bridges story, visit http://www.mylongview.com/index.aspx?page=77
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