The Shoe Tree, decked out in Nikes
The Nike executives scheduled to participate in a conference in Park City in December could hold an event at the Shoe Tree in Old Town, City Hall said this week.
A spokesperson for the company was not sure what sort of role the Shoe Tree would play during the conference.
In a report to Mayor Dana Williams and the Park City Council, Jason Glidden, a Sustainability Department staffer involved in the permitting for the Nike event, said the event at the Shoe Tree would occur around lunchtime on Dec. 12, saying it would be a "small event."
According to the report, the people from Nike will throw shoes into the Shoe Tree as a way to "spotlight the shoe tree to the group." The report says Nike will remove the shoes from the trees afterward.
The Shoe Tree is a row of trees along a pedestrian-bicyclist trail outside the Marriott Summit Watch where people have thrown shoes into the branches for years. The trees are highly visible from Deer Valley Drive. There are hundreds of shoes hanging from the branches nowadays. The shoes are occasionally thinned.
Many Parkites see the Shoe Tree as one of the funky holdovers from the early skiing era. It is believed the tradition of throwing shoes into the trees at the location started in the late 1960s or the early 1970s, years before the construction of the Marriott Summit Watch. A tiny dirt road called Easy Street existed at that time.
A woman in 2011 sharply criticized the Shoe Tree in an appearance in front of Mayor Dana Williams and the Park City Council, saying the trees were unattractive with the shoes hanging from the branches. The elected officials disagreed, saying the Shoe Tree would remain.
Anita Lewis, Brent Ovard and Travis English were influential in shaping how residents interact with the county.