On the beach at City Park, a large log with “Wrangell” carved into it has become a favorite spot for family photos.
And the chainsaw carver who made that sign returned to Wrangell this week and carved “Alaska” into a smaller log to go along with it.
“It’s just what chainsaw carvers do,” carver Rob McElfresh said. “I saw that in 2011 and said it would be a nice thing to carve Wrangell in it. And then in 2012 I came and did it.”
McElfresh lives in Coffman Cove and was visiting friends in Wrangell this week. He decided to carve the new “Alaska” log while he was here.
McElfresh said he has been practicing chainsaw carving for about 17 years.
“I’m retired. This is just my hobby,” McElfresh said. “You have to have a gig in Alaska because it costs so much to live here, so I travel around doing my chainsaw carvings and meeting everybody.”
He displayed some of his artwork for sale at the park, including carved wooden signs, paddles and a bench.
McElfresh said he has future plans for more carvings around Southeast.
“I think I’m just going to do it in every town,” McElfresh said. “Like in Petersburg, I’ll go down to the beach and find a big log and carve Petersburg in it. Just kinda helps my biz.”
McElfresh said it took him about two hours to carve the new sign.