In early 2018, Tourism London announced that the Juno Awards would be held in London during March of 2019. For our Tree Trunk Tour, this represented another promotional opportunity as the eyes of the world would be on London once again and, if we played our cards right, Hamilton Road as well.
We would need an appropriate Hamilton Road sculpture location and, as it turned out, Hamilton Road’s very own East Side Bar and Grill was named as an Official Venue for the Juno Awards and the festivities leading up to it. They had a parking lot with one of the most visible locations on Hamilton Road.
At the same time as we were reaching out to STIHL Canada, our primary sponsor, we received an email from STIHL carver Robbin Wenzoski with an idea he had for an animal band sculpture. It was just waiting for the right special occasion. The media seemed to love puns and we had a name that was full of them, so The STIHL Band Tree-0 began to take shape.
This was carved out of three separate hardwood trees (Maple, Oak and Ash) by a four-person team of STIHL’s sought-after sculptors.
• Robbin Wenzoski, Team Leader
• Neil Cox, Toronto
• Jeff Taylor, Barrie
• Nancy Wood, London
The characters depicted would be a three-piece band including a wolf playing the electric guitar, a bear playing the wash tub bass fiddle and an eagle playing the drums, to back them up. Two plaques were attached recognizing London`s Juno Award winners from 1970 to 2018 along with London’s Music Hall of Fame inductees. The sculptures would cost almost $20,000, but we had a full sponsorship commitment from Tourism London, STIHL Canada, Summer’s Home Hardware and East Side Bar and Grill. The synchronized dedication was a resounding success, as we ran a special Juno Awards week on Hamilton Road with Selfie Contests and a social media campaign welcoming visitors to our Tree Trunk Tour and famous ethnic restaurants and businesses that go along with it.
Thanks to our sponsors and strong community support, The STIHL Band Tree-O will now play music in perpetuity on Hamilton Road in London.
by Dave Broostad
Hamilton Road Business Improvement Area