Minnesota mayor irked by 'doofus' Paul Bunyan ads

Aug. 20, 2013 at 2:16 PM

BEMIDJI, Minn., Aug. 20 (UPI) -- A Minnesota mayor said she was "not impressed" with a series of state-made awareness ads that depict mythical lumberjack Paul Bunyan as a "doofus."

Mayor Rita Albrecht of Bemidji, home to famous statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox, said she was "not impressed" with the health insurance awareness campaign, featuring Bunyan sustaining a series of injuries while performing activities such as wielding an ax, sledding, ice fishing and waterskiing, the St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press reported Tuesday.

"To have him be a doofus, it doesn't make sense for us," Albrecht said Monday morning. "We kind of think of Paul as stately and handsome and representing a proud era of timber production in our community."

However, Albrecht softened her stance Monday afternoon.

"When we first saw (the ads), we thought: What?" she said in a second interview. "But as we thought about it more, we think it's positive that people recognize Paul and Babe as important, and that people like that."

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