The first sculptures in the highly anticipated “Otter-ly Amazing Public Art Project” were installed Wednesday in downtown Fredericksburg.
Dedicated Fredericksburg Public Works crews labored throughout the day Wednesday to move heavy boulders into place around town that will be the resting place for the otter statues. The first sculptures were put into place Wednesday, and more will follow Thursday.
The program has been spearheaded by Fredericksburg VA Main Street, led by former President April Peterson. Funds were raised for the bronze sculptures of river otters, which were created by Steven and Stewart Wegner over the past year. The Wegner brothers are local artists who own The Foundry, Wegner Metal Arts at 520 Wolfe Street.
The program is patterned after similar programs including a well-known one featuring bronze mice in Greenville, S.C. River otters were chosen for the program because they are a sign of a healthy river, are lovable-looking creatures and more.
The goals of the program are to:
- Generate movement between Riverfront Park and the Downtown Business District
- Provide a fun family activity that is appropriate for all ages and during all times of the year
- Help inform residents and tourists about the attributes of the Rappahannock River
The Fredericksburg Visitor Center at 706 Caroline Street will soon have a scavenger hunt form available that will help people find all seven planned locations for the otters. We could reveal them here, but that would ruin the fun, so we won’t. Suffice it to say that they are scattered within walking distance of each other in Fredericksburg’s historic core.
We are so excited for this program and can’t say thank you enough to the Public Works crews, the Wegners, the sponsors of the individual sculptures, Main Street and especially April Peterson! Be sure to go check them out. The formal unveiling of both the sculptures and the Riverfront Park will be at 10:30 a.m. May 21 in Riverfront Park (713 Caroline Street). The Visitor Center will have the scavenger hunt ready that day.
Check out more details about the program at FXBGotters.com and use the hashtag #FXBGotters for social media pictures with the otters.