JUST ASK SHANE: History Behind Richland's "Fingernail" in Howard - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

JUST ASK SHANE: History Behind Richland's "Fingernail" in Howard Amon Park

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RICHLAND, WA - If you've spent any time in Richland's Howard Amon Park, you probably know about the "fingernail".  But do you know the history behind it?

Roy sent me an email recently wanting to know about the history behind the iconic bandshell that sits along the Columbia River.  To get the full story, we found the man who spearheaded the effort to put it there back in 1982.

Local architect Jim Dillman convinced the Richland City Council to let him move the ellipsoid structure from an old concrete business located where Interstate 182 runs through today.  The structure was inspired by a sailing trip the owner took on Lake Washington and was originally used for office space.  But Dillman thought it would make a great bandshell.

It took Dillman and his crew two days to move the 60-ton structure to downtown.  But its nickname came while Dillman was taking a break from installing the structure in Howard Amon Park.

"From over behind the ellipsoid and the big pile of dirt that was behind me, I heard a tiny little girl's voice say, 'the finnernail, the finnernail!' And I said, if that's what somebody wants to call it, it's okay by me," Dillman said.
The move down Wellsian Way and then down Lee Boulevard drew quite a crowd, and city workers had to push a few stoplights out of the way to get the fingernail down to the park.  It's been the site of dozens of concerts, plays, and other performances ever since.

If you'd like to learn even more about the history of the fingernail, click
here to check out  a short video put together a few years ago by the City of Richland. 

Remember, if you've got a question about something going on in our community... send it my way.  You can reach me in the newsroom at (509) 737-6738, or send me an email at JustAskShane@nbcrightnow.com