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Most Underrated Thing In Or About the Valley

1st Place: April 1 Confluence referendums
2nd Place: Woo’s Pagoda salvage effort
3rd: Record-breaking cold winter


There’s nothing like a project that might transform the community and involves spending taxpayer dollars to get the electorate – not to mention lawyers and accountants – energized. Eau Claire put Chicago to shame with all the political activity and door-knocking that went on before the April 1 Confluence Project referendums despite the fact the Chippewa Valley experienced its coldest winter on record. (The frigid weather ranked No. 3 among memorable events.) The second-place event was poignant for those who patronized the former Woo’s Pagoda (1700 S. Hastings Way. The restaurant’s colorfully lighted pagoda was a community fixture for more than 60 years until it was threatened with demolition to make way for a CVS pharmacy. However, volunteers banded together in May to salvage and relocate the rooftop pagoda. Special thanks go to project leader Dick Hajek; Susan McLeod of the Chippewa Valley Museum; Jeff Nelson from Dell’s Architectural Antiques; and Jack Kaiser from Banbury Place, where the pagoda is being stored temporarily. –Barbara Arnold

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