A Circle of Friends


Renovations are coming to the Circle of Friends at Marshfield. The Circle of Friends was placed in the middle of the Pirate circle on Tuesday, Oct. 1.

The sculpture was created by the manufacturing class. It is a ring of eight rust colored figures holding hands. It was made to fill the space where a tree formerly stood, but was cut down as a prank in 2011. Multiple students enjoyed the tree and were upset once it was gone, including senior Sasha Strain.

“They should’ve done something different for their prank,” said Strain. “That wasn’t really necessary.”

Once the tree was gone, it left the roundabout empty. Freshman Jesse Stringer was among those who noticed that something was missing.

“A lot of people hung out [by the tree],” said Stringer. “When they cut it down a lot of people abandoned the place.”

The manufacturing class decided to change that by creating the Circle of Friends. Although there are many levels of manufacturing, students at different skill levels were given the opportunity to participate. Manufacturing teacher Tom Hull advises the classes and projects.

“All kinds of kids [work on it] if they have the skills,” Hull said.

The construction of the Circle of Friends began last spring. It is made out of ¾ inch thick metal supplied by American Bridge. Derek Seevers, a junior in advanced manufacturing, was heavily involved in the construction.

“I did a lot of welding on the Circle of Friends,” Seevers said.

In addition to welding, Seevers also constructed a plywood model of an obelisk. An obelisk is a four-sided tapering structure that has a pyramid shape on top. According to Hull, the obelisk represents the sun in the place where it originated, Egypt.

“Humans just like the shape,” Hull said.

A commonly known example of an obelisk is the Washington Monument. The obelisk will soon be placed in the middle of the Circle of Friends.

“It will be done before Christmas at the rate we are going,” Seevers said.

Jonathan Goudge, a senior in advanced manufacturing, is working on the steel capstone that crowns the obelisk. It requires a special kind of welding called tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding.

“You can’t weld stainless steel without TIG,” Goudge said.

According to Goudge, TIG welding includes heating up the metal with electricity. Not all of the students in manufacturing have this ability.

“He [Goudge] has a particular skill level,” Hull said.

Although Hull came up with the idea to add the obelisk, the students in his classes are given freedom to work on many parts of the projects.

“Mr. Hull treats people like adults, not high schoolers,” Seevers said.

Before the obelisk is placed, it will have designs representing Coos Bay put on it, such as trees and fish.  The students also incorporated a piece of themselves into the work on the Circle of Friends.

“Everybody that worked on it is putting their name on it, or a symbol,” Seevers said. “Something to represent them.”

The Circle of Friends refreshed the look of the bare roundabout, but the tree is missed by those who enjoyed it before. Eighth grader Dilyn Baum said he likes the new additions but thinks it needs plant life.

Strain agrees.

“It needs some green in there,” Strain said. “If somebody maybe planted like a flowering plant to climb up the obelisk and the Circle of Friends [it would be complete].”