While out chasing some beautiful clouds yesterday I remembered the elephants.
Elephant Parade is an open air art exhibition designed to raise public awareness and support for the cause of elephant conservation. Making their first US appearance, thirty life-sized baby elephants will be on display throughout Dana Point from August 23 through November 7 2013.
Elephant Parade was created by the father and son team of Mike and Marc Spits after a visit to Thailand where they met Mosha, a baby elephant who had stepped on a landmine and was fitted with the world's first ever prosthesis for a baby elephant. It is the world's largest support organization for conservation of the Asian elephants, which are on the verge of extinction. The elephants, which have been decorated by local and international artists, will be auctioned on November 17 to raise money for the Asian Elephant Foundation. The organization has raised over $6 million since its inception in 2006.
Some interesting facts from the brochure:
Over the last 100 years, reports indicate a 90% population decrease of the Asian Elephant species.
The elephant is Thailand's national symbol, yet reports indicate that there are only 2,000 elephants surviving in the wild.
Scientists state that the Asian elephant population decreases by 3.5% annually and that without proper action the species will likely become extinct in just a few decades.
Imagine a world without elephants!!
I had only managed to locate 5 of the artworks before I decided that early morning would be the best time to photograph them. Most of them are located along the beach and you will want the sun behind you. Several area resorts are also hosting some of the sculptures and I'd imagine they are also placed in locations best photographed in the morning (unless you want beautiful sunsets behind them and are willing to deal with setting up lights). If you are local and want to check them out you can find more information on the official Elephant Parade: Welcome to America webpage and a walking map here
The elephants truly are beautiful works of art and well worth the time to pay them a visit while enjoying the beautiful coastal scenery of Dana Point. The Tall Ship Festival kicks off in Dana Point this weekend too with the sunset parade on September 6th.