To stay lit, the old White Stag sign needs a sponsor.
Located atop the White Stag Building in Old Town, the sign is ready for a name change.
"People don't realize it costs money to run the sign," said Darryl Paulsen, president of Ramsay Signs, which owns the sign. "Without a sponsor, we would have to take it down, and I don't think anybody wants that."
The name of the past sponsor, Made In Oregon, is still on the famous neon sign. Under that, it says "OLD TOWN." But Made in Oregon's lease ended in January, and the University of Oregon has been paying the maintenance costs, said Paulsen.
The UO wants to have "University of Oregon" replace "Made In Oregon" on the sign.
Paulsen, whose company has owned the sign since it went up more than 60 years ago, said he sees no problem with UO asking for the change. "They're going to sponsor the sign and pay to maintain it, just like White Stag did," he said.
City officials met with Paulsen on Tuesday for a pre-application conference. The next step will be for the application to come before the city's Historic Landmarks Commission.
Mark Walhood, a city planner with the Bureau of Development Services, said he has received e-mails from fans of the sign who object to dropping "Made In" and adding "University of." [Read full article]
By Sam Bennett,
DJC Oregon - December 10, 2008