Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Big Dog Show

At the foot of a walkway bridge that leads from the Mennello Museum to the suburban neighborhood on the opposite side of Lake Formosa is a "Red Dog" sculpture by Dale Rogers.  I love walking across that bridge as the sun sets. Snapping turtles leisurely paddle their way through the thick green water for a breath of air. The bridge is now part of the Dinky Line Trail, an exercise trail that will weave through the Virginia Drive, Ivanhoe Village, neighborhood. Under current plans, the trail ultimately could stretch from the new arena in downtown Orlando past Lake Highland and the city's Loch Haven Park before terminating at Mead Garden in Winter Park, where it could eventually tie into other trails. Also on the drawing board: a spur to Lake Baldwin.

Driving past the Mennello, I saw a pack of huge rusty dogs, which were giant versions of the "Red Dog" in he Sculpture Garden and around the entrance to the museum. I had to pull in. The museum has welcomed back Rogers with a fresh pack of twenty 8-foot-tall, 10-foot-long sculptures of dogs made of Cor-ten steel. Small  versions are available for sale in the gift shop. Rogers has said that he thinks his work gives you a dog’s eye view of the world, and he hopes art, the public and animal welfare can all come together for a good cause. The show is open to the public now through March 17th, 2012.

Today, Saturday DECEMBER 1st, there will be a Big Dog Show Happy Hour from 4 to 6 p.m. Admission is free. Bring your four-legged friends to this outdoor reception for Dale Rogers and the new installation of 20 Brown Dog steel sculptures. Refreshments for sale for dogs and their owners from The Spork Happy Food Cafe and Puppy Love Cafe, along with litter bags. Bring donations of pet foods and supplies to donate to local animal shelters. Adopt one of the rare breeds to benefit Canine Companions for Independence and A New Beginning Pet Rescue.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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