Signage is telling the Lilac Way story.

Karen Laukkonen, founder of Restore Lilac Way, has created custom-designed informational signage for both the renewed Lilac Park in St. Louis Park, MN and restored Graeser Park in Robbinsdale, MN.

Her next idea? Now that the City of St. Louis Park owns Rock Island Park, she hopes they will include informational signage in their plans for this historic Lilac Way park with one of only two rock gardens in Minnesota.

Then, let’s add commemorative Lilac Way signs along the north- and south-bound 12.5 miles of Lilac Way—all the way up to Graeser Park in Robbinsdale.

Lilac Park, renewed

Lilac Park’s informational signage details the transformation of this neglected park.

Partnered with the City of St. Louis Park

After seeing seen her design for the Restore Lilac Way website launched in 2007, the city asked Karen Laukkonen to design and write this large two-panel kiosk for renewed Lilac Park in 2009. The kiosk shares detail about Lilac Way, the story behind the park’s renewal and efforts to move the beehive fireplace from the old Lilac Park to this park, saving it from demolition.

The project also included wayfinding signs, leading visitors from the Cedar Lake Regional Trail into this historic park. The rare beehive-shaped fireplace is visible from the bike trail, drawing visitors to the park.

Graeser Park, restored

Graeser Park, July 6, 2023. Designer Karen Laukkonen partnered with Andrea S. Weber, PLA, Manager of the MnDOT Historic Roadside Properties Program and Kristi Gibson, Robbinsdale Historical Society.

Graeser Park’s restoration included a new sign kiosk.

Designed to continue the branding established in signage at revived Lilac Park, Graeser Park’s custom designed signage was installed as part of MnDOT’s $500,000 restoration project.

Karen partnered with Andrea S. Weber, PLA, Manager of the MnDOT Historic Roadside Properties and Waysides Program and Kristi Gibson, Robbinsdale Historical Society.

Graeser Park, June 28, 2023. Restore Lilac Way's Karen Laukkonen with sign she designed for MnDOT.

Wish List

Let’s install signage along Lilac Way to honor MnDOT’s historic efforts.

It’s just 12.5 miles of Highway 100 between Highway 52 (now 81) in Robbinsdale, and Highway 5 (78th Street) in Edina.

Creating a continuous Lilac Way brand from Graeser Park to Lilac Park would be a lovely tribute to history.

Proposed signage along Highway 100, from Lilac Park in St. Louis Park to Graeser Park in Robbinsdale, MN. Created by Laukkonen Design.