The park stretched from the East Side Businessmen's, around to Starkweather Creek, across the creek and just beyond the hill where Oscar Mayer would set up its toboggan run in the winter, a huge scaffolded structure lined with blocks of ice and big enough to hold an eight man toboggan. The area on the other side of Atwood between the abandoned sugar beet factory and the Hungry, Hungry, Hungry an A&W drive-in with carhops who brought your frosted mugs of rootbeer to your car on metal trays that attached to the driver's window. I don't remember thinking this area on the other side of Atwood Avenue had anything to do with Ohlbrich. It was a pretty seedy area.
The man loved nature and the less fortunate. He had the vision to see a connection and Ohlbrich Gardens has become his legacy."No greater mistake can be made than the belief that taste and esthetic sense is a monopoly of the merely well-to-do or purely a product of formal schooling. The park proposed is intended primarily to bring back into the life of the worker confronted by the dismal industrial tangle, whose forces we all so little comprehend, something of the grace and beauty that nature intended us all to share. For this park has not a passive, but an active function. It is not to stand aloof, a treasure of the city, beautiful, still, reserved. This park above all others, with a warmth and strength of love - of love of all the working world - should hold out its arms, should invite them to itself, until its naturalness and beauty enter into their lives."
Michael Balthazar Ohlbrich, 1921
Robert Mapplethorpe, photographer
Represented by The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation