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Local dentist injects a little whimsy into practice with treehouse

Kids might not like the idea of going to the dentist, but if the tooth fairy lives at their dental practice in Lebanon, that might make the trip a bit more exciting.

A tooth fairy treehouse was installed at Dr. Adam Kirkpatrick Family Dentistry Oct. 5 at 270 S. Main St.

When Kirkpatrick had to remove a large cedar tree from his dental practice parking lot several years ago, he began thinking about what he could do with the trunk.

“I wanted to keep the stump because I really wanted to keep the spirit of the tree alive,” he said.

Some people suggested he have it carved into a large tooth or toothbrush, but Kirkpatrick, who describes himself as a big kid, wanted it to be something that would spark the imagination.

One day he saw a stump in someone’s yard that was decorated as a treehouse, so he began thinking about how to use that idea, and then a family friend, who was about 10 years old at the time, gave him the answer he was looking for.

“You should turn it into a tooth fairy treehouse!” Adrianne Lang told him.

Deciding that was the perfect solution, Kirkpatrick asked his friend, Jesse Beam, a mixed media artist, to design it. Although it was Beam’s first tooth fairy treehouse project, it turned out better than expected, Kirkpatrick said.

From the little wooden steps to the peaked roof and chimney, the treehouse delights onlookers. The tooth fairy’s hobbit-style door includes a tooth-shaped window, and the top window of her house has a planter box.

In time, Kirkpatrick said, he would like to add to the tree house. He’s thinking a rock garden with gnomes, and maybe adding a light in the window. He might even rig it so the door opens to reveal the inside of the fairy’s home, he said.