A Port Neches-Groves community icon returns

Published 12:26 am Tuesday, May 9, 2023

PORT NECHES — A very popular piece of Port Neches that once served as a city icon has returned.

A version of a totem pole designed by a maintenance department employee and created by welding students at Port Neches-Groves High School in 2016 has been relocated to the district’s administration building, which officially opened in July.

The totem pole was first placed at the corner of Magnolia Avenue and Merriman Street in front of a 9-feet concrete wall. Lit up at night, the corner served as a welcome to those turning down Merriman Street where the high school is located.

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In 2017, PNGISD and Neches Federal Credit Union began an agreement on a land swap that would allow the credit union to build a new administration building on the corner, where the totem pole was displayed, and the district would then have use of Neches FCU’s Magnolia Avenue branch as a new administration building.

The totem pole came down once the swap was completed and construction began on the new Neches FCU facility.

PNGISD said at the time it would be relocated to the new administration building. The new totem pole contains some replicated pieces of the original but is very near the original design.