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Video premiere to focus on Skyline Parkway system

When Mark Ryan was a young boy growing up on Seven Bridges Road, he never imagined that the road and the man who built it, former Duluth Mayor Samuel Snively, would engross him for almost 10 years of his adult life.

When Mark Ryan was a young boy growing up on Seven Bridges Road, he never imagined that the road and the man who built it, former Duluth Mayor Samuel Snively, would engross him for almost 10 years of his adult life.
But that's just about what has happened.
It all started out innocently enough.
"I was going to write a short, three-page article on Seven Bridges Road. That's kind of what I set out to do," said Ryan, who now lives in the Twin Cities. "But then Snively's name came up, and I realized he was the one who built the seven bridges as a private citizen. So, it really expanded from that."
Expanded is one way to put it. Not only has Ryan published two major articles about Snively and his road building since then, but he has also created a Web site about the former mayor and his influence on the development of Duluth's Skyline Parkway.
Ryan is also in the final stages of completing a documentary about the man and his work, which will be premiered at the Duluth Public Library on March 1.
Called "Samuel Snively and the History of Skyline Parkway," the one-hour video is brimming with historical photographs and modern day videos of the most beautiful and beloved spots in Duluth -- the Skyline Parkway.
Like many lawyers and real estate men at the turn of the century, Snively owned a small farm in the rural area above Lakeside.
"He built a stone house up there and then realized he needed an easier road to get to it from Superior Street," Ryan said.
So he decided to build one himself, but not just any road. This road would be aesthetically pleasing and be graced by stone bridges that have stood the test of time. "He hired some local men to actually build the road," Ryan said. "And he paid for half of it out of his own pocket. Duluth gave some money for it as did private landowners. When he finished it, he gave it to the city in hopes that one day it would connect with Skyline Parkway, which had been started seven years before. And that's happened, too. It was very gratifying to Snively."
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Today, Skyline Parkway remains a testament to the vision of Snively and other early Duluth leaders. Snively himself was one of Duluth's most popular mayors, serving four terms from 1921-1937.
Snively was inducted into the Duluth Hall of Fame in 1938.
Ryan's video will feature not only historical photos from the era, but lots of footage of beautiful spots that can be found on Skyline today.
The screening is free and will be at held in the Green Room at the library at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 1. The event is sponsored by the West Skyline Planning and Preservation Alliance. For more information, call Nancy Nelson at 728-1002 or visit the WSPPA Web site at http://www.wsppa.tsx.org .
NEWS TO USE
Event: The premiere showing of the video "Samuel Snively and the History of Skyline Parkway" by Mark Ryan will be at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 1, in the Duluth Public Library Green Room.
The screening is free.
For more information: Ryan has also created an extensive Web page about Snively and Duluth's history at http://www .
geocities.com/SoHo/Lofts/4839/SevenBridges/
Joan Farnam is the Budgeteer community page
editor and can be reached at joan.farnam@duluth.com . or 723-1207.

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