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Leech Lake spiritual leader Melvin Goodman, a relative to Chief Bemidji, was given the honor to bless the site Monday night where a new bronze statue of the chief overlooking Lake Bemidji will be placed. (Monte Draper| Bemidji Pioneer)

Ceremony held at future site of Chief Bemidji sculpture

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Leech Lake spiritual leader Melvin Goodman, a relative to Chief Bemidji, was given the honor to bless the site Monday night where a new bronze statue of the chief overlooking Lake Bemidji will be placed. More than 25 family members and Chief Bemidji Committe members who've been working together toward a new sculpture gathered Monday evening for the event. The new bronze sculpture by Washington state-based artist Gareth Curtiss will be installed in early October. The former wooden sculpture -- more than 60-years-old and carved by Eric Boe -- was moved last month to the Beltrami County History Center. 

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