Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Belle Isle Aquarium Weathervane

After a little more than a year since winning the design competition for the aquarium weathervane, it is finally sitting atop its new home. I have been fortunate enough to have been a part of each step from conception to installation and will do weekly posts about the entire process, but for now I'd like to thank some people. Although, most of the work was done by myself and Giorgio Gikas, there were a lot of people who helped out along the way (even if their contribution was brief, it still helped to achieve the goal). This was truly a team effort. I know that I will probably forget someone, so if you read this post and felt you helped in some way, give me a holler and I'll add you to the list.

First and foremost, thanks need to be said to Dick Rassel and the law firm of Butzel Long. Butyl Long has a connection with the aquarium that goes back 100 years, I believe, and to celebrate their longevity and their connection with the fishes they put up the money for the design contest. They started it all. Dick seems like a good guy and I hope he is happy with the final product.

Next, the Belle Isle Conservancy and the chair people of the Belle Isle Aquarium, which include Michelle Hodges, Vance Patrick, Jennifer Boardman, Katy Wyerman, and Chris Meister. Some volunteers and staff at the aquarium should be thanked for their support and enthusiasm: Tom Drummy, Carol White, Richard Kik, John MacKenzie, Joe Guibourg, Steven Macklay, Steve Huer and many more!

At Venus Bronze Works where the work was done, my thanks to Giorgio Gikas, Leslie Cislo, James Viste, Cory, Josh Martin, Andre, Zach and Nario.

There were some local businesses who supplied materials for the work or did some actual work for us and all of them were super helpful and great to deal with. The staff at Federal Pipe, the guys at Metric Tool, Alro Steel, J&R Sheet Metal...

Brad Shimko and the rest of the guys from the Detroit Fire Department for helping get this sucker to the roof.

The Macomb Daily, WJR and ClickonDetroit for the interviews and coverage.

My wife, Tina, for putting up with me and being supportive during the whole process.

Thanks to all who appreciate such things and for being so patient while this thing was being built.

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