Monday, May 23, 2016

Sculptures of Springfield: Dr. James Naismith - Springfield, MA

Dr. James Naismith
Springfield, MA

N 42° 05.653 W 072° 35.128

Short Description: 

A statue of Dr. James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, his located on the north side of the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame on Columbus Avenue in Springfield, MA.

Long Description:

The game of basketball was invented in 1891 by Dr. James Naismith, an instructor at the YMCA Training School, now Springfield College. He was attempting to create an indoor game that athletes could be play during the winter to remain in condition. He later moved to the University of Kansas where he wrote the first rule book for the game of basketball.

A 6' high by 6' diameter monument to Dr. James Naismith - The First Coach was dedicated in the Naismith Coaches Circle at the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame on September 11, 2015. The sculpture was created by the official sculptor of the Hall of Fame, Brian Hanlon.

The composition consists of a life size bronze figure of Dr. James Naismith. He is seated on a coaches bench wearing, trousers, a shirt with rolled up sleeves and a tie. He is holding a basketball with both hands between his legs. Dr. Naismith is surrounded by three life size children. A boy and a girl are seated on a bench behind and slightly above the bench Naismith is seated on. Both are wearing shorts, sleeveless t-shirts, and athletic footwear. The boy is holding his right knee with both hands. The girl has both her folded hands on her chin. A slightly older boy is sitting on the ground to Naismith's left. He wearing shorts and a t-shirt with sleeves and is looking up at Naismith with both hands around his bent up knees.

On the circular bronze plinth is the inscription: DR. JAMES NAISMITH - THE FIRST COACH. The statue is set on a two tiered 4' high, octagonal, granite base. Inscribed around the upper tier are motivational words such as TEAM WORK and DETERMINATION. The lower tier has quotes from famous coaches.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Political Revolutions: 1916 Easter Rising 100th Anniversary - Springfield, MA

100th Anniversary
of the
1916 Easter Rising
Springfield, MA

N 42° 04.623 W 072° 34.020

Short Description: 

The City of Springfield commemorated the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising against British rule in Ireland by creating Gardens of Remembrance in the Rose Garden in Forest Park.

Long Description:

The 1916 Easter Rising was heavily influenced by the men and women who had settled in the City of Springfield and the surrounding area. Much of the financing that took place for the 1916 Easter Rising came from the people of Irish descent living in western Massachusetts.

The 1916 Easter Rising began the process to British rule in Ireland. An armed insurrection in Ireland during Easter Week, April 1916 was launched by Irish republicans to end British rule and establish an independent Irish Republic. The Rising began on Easter Monday, 24 April 1916, and lasted for six days. The insurrection was organised by a seven-man Military Council of the Irish Republican Brotherhood. Members of the Irish Volunteers led by Patrick Pearse and the Irish Citizen Army led by James Connolly took control of key locations in Dublin and proclaimed an Irish Republic.

The focal point of the Gardens of Remembrances is a monument that includes life size typographical replica of the proclamation of an Irish Republic set in an Irish granite base. Behind the monument is a planting in the form of a Celtic knot. Three benches, flagpoles flying an Irish flag and an American flag complete the garden. Each bench gas a bronze plaque inscribed: 1916 GARDENS OF REMEMBRANCES.

The typographical replica on the monument is inscribed:


IRISHMAN AND IRISHWOMEN: In the name of God and of the dead generations from which she receives her old tradition of nationhood, Ireland, through us, summons her children to her flag and strikes for her freedom.

Having organized and trained her manhood through her secret revolutionary organization, the Irish Republican Brotherhood, and through her open military organizations, the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Citizen Army, having patiently perfected her discipline, having resolutely waited for the right moment to reveal itself, she now seizes that moment, and, supported by her exiled children in America and by gallant allies in Europe, but relying in the first on her own strength, she strikes in full confidence of victory.

We declare the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of Ireland, and to the unfettered control of Irish destinies, to be sovereign and indefeasible. The long usurpation of that right by a foreign people and government has not extinguished the right, nor can it ever be extinguished except by the destruction of the Irish people. In every generation the Irish people have asserted their right to national freedom and sovereignty; six times during the past three hundred years they have asserted it in arms. Standing on that fundamental right and again asserting it in arms in the face of the world, we hereby proclaim the Irish Republic as a Sovereign Independent State. And we pledge our lives and the lives of our comrades-in-arms to the cause of its freedom, of its welfare, and of its exaltation among the nations.

The Irish Republic is entitled to, and hereby claims, the allegiance of every Irishman and Irish woman. The Republic guarantees religious and civil liberty, equal rights and equal opportunities of all its citizens, and declares its resolve to pursue the happiness and prosperity of the whole nation and of all its parts, cherishing all the children of the nation equally, and oblivious of the differences carefully fostered by an alien government, which have divided a minority in the past.

Until our arms have brought the opportune moment for the establishment of a permanent National Government, representative of the whole people of Ireland and elected by the suffrages of all her men and women, the Provision Government, hereby constituted, will administer the civil and military affairs of the Republic in trust for the people.

We place the cause of the Irish Republic under the protection of the Most High God, Whose blessing we invoke upon our arms, and we pray that no one who serves that cause will dishonour it by cowardice, inhumanity, or rapine. In this supreme hour the Irish nation must, by its valour and discipline and by the readiness of its children to sacrifice themselves for the common good, prove itself worthy of the august destiny to which it is called.

Signed on behalf of the Provisional Government, 

P.H.PEARSE                         EAMONN CEANNT
                JAMES CONNOLLY          JOSEPH PLUNKETT

Monday, May 2, 2016

Zippy the Pinhead Location: Luxor Hotel & Casino - Las Vegas, NV

Luxor Pyramid and Sphinx
"Drinks with the Sphinx"
Las Vegas, NV

N 36° 05.278 W 115° 10.417

Short Description:

Luxor Pyramid and Sphinx is located at 3900 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV

Long Description: 

The Luxor is an  Egypt-themed casino resort on the south end of the Las Vegas Strip. It contains a   black 30-story pyramid topped with a 315,000-watt light beam and an over-sized  replica of the Great Sphinx of Giza.  The Luxor Casino-Hotel is the largest in America.  The reason that the Luxor pyramid wasn't built taller than the Great Pyramid of Giza is that it stands opposite the Las Vegas International Airport.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Zippy the Pinhead Location: Leo the Lion - Las Vegas, NV

Leo the Lion
MGM Grand
"Cat Burglar"
Las Vegas, NV

N 36° 06.062 W 115° 10.307

Short Description: 

Leo the Lion is located outside the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino at 3799 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV

Long Description: 

A bronze statue of Leo the Lion is  45 ft. tall and weighs over 50 tons. It is the biggest bronze sculpture in the U.S.

 It was created by Snellen Maurice "Snell" Johnson in 1997 and replaced  a lion  sculpture that some thought to be unlucky because visitors had to enter the casino through the lion's mouth.