Wild rice no longer grows on Rice Lake, except for a few spots and in small amounts. But the harvest remains important to Northwoods Native Americans and a new sculpture on Lakeshore Drive will soon pay homage to the winter food staple.

Manoomin, wild rice in the Ojibwe language, fortified the people who lived on the lakes in northern Wisconsin. Rice Lake once boasted the largest wild rice beds in North America, said Rod Olson, a member of the Rice Lake Historical Sculpture Project Manoomin steering committee.