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Big Bugs Emerge at Lewis Ginter

Big Bugs officially opened today and will be at Lewis Ginter until August 28th. The exhibit is included in your normal Lewis Ginter admission.

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Bee and Flower – Materials used: black walnut, black locust, red cedar, and black walnut. All wood either deadwood or harvested sustainably. Size: Flower is 5ft 5 in in diameter and 9 feet tall.

Did you know that 75% of the earth’s flowering plants and over 70% of its food crops depend on pollinators to thrive? Think about a world without coffee and chocolate?! That’s pretty powerful! This summer, we are putting the spotlight on bugs and birds in a BIG way. Artist David Rogers’ Big Bugs: The Pollinatorsshowcases larger-than-life sculptures highlighting the importance of pollinators and preserving their habitats. Big Bugs is part of M&T Bank Pollinator Power which also includes Butterflies LIVE!

Visitors of all ages and abilities will explore the wonder and craftsmanship of these ten oversized pollinator sculptures created from combinations of found or fallen whole trees, willow limbs, twigs, branches and other forest material. Discover giant ladybugs on a branch, a 17-foot-long daddy longlegs,  a giant dragonfly, a beautiful hummingbird and more!

Ladybugs on Branch – Materials used: red cedar, black walnut, and black locusts. Size: Ladybugs are 2.5 feet L, 2.5 W, and 2.5 Dia. The Sticke is 9 feet long and 34 inches wide

Humming Bird Flower – Materials used: rainbow popular, black walnut, red cedar, black locust Size: Hummingbird is 3.5 feet long and 3.5 feet wide Flower is 5 feet 3 inches wide (there are more flowers out of frame) and 8 feet 3 inches high.

Dragonfly Materials used: red cedar and willow Size: 17 feet long and 17 feet wide

Daddy Long Legs Materials Used: red cedar and willow, Size: 17 feet long, 17 feet wide, and 10 feet high

The artist David Rogers is a renaissance man. As a child, he was in the woods near his home in Long Island, New York exploring and building. Treehouses and fascination with insects of all sorts caught his interest pretty much like most kids that spend time out in nature. Traditional school wasn’t the right fit for David but hands-on learning certainly was the right fit.

Working for a boatbuilder, cabinetmaker, and rustic furniture maker gave him a foundation for all the works you’ll see at Lewis Ginter. Welding which he picked up in boatbuilding is crucial in building the supports for all the bugs. The largest at Lewis Ginter is 1,200 lbs of black locust. Wood alone would suffice for keeping such weight and unique form standing so skill learned many years ago came into play. Knowing the properties of wood and the finish required was a constant across all his previous “real jobs”. On pieces that have more curves such as Spider and Web and Bee and Beehive use willow which was a crucial ingredient in previous what he called “Victorian Rustic” earlier works. Big Bugs made their debut in Dallas in 1994.  The works found their obvious niche in botanical gardens and soon after hit the road. Lewis Ginter Gardens was one of the first to appreciate the exhibit and they made their first appearance here in 1999. Since that start in Dallas the bugs have traveled all across the country and appeared in close to a 100 locations. As David told me, “You don’t have to have a lot of good ideas. All you need is one really good one.”

David loves every aspect of his work even the mundane task of driving a truck full of big bugs across the country for the next exhibit and it shows. He’s quick to smile, and laugh and enjoys talking about his work and the role that insects play. Giant insects could be something that inspires fear like a creature from a bad 70’s monster flick. These bugs with their warm tones, natural materials, and inviting setting instead give a feeling of creativity, curiosity, and exploration. You can check out more of David’s work on his website.

While we were there the last piece Spider and Web was going into place. David had help from his wife/assistant and several Lewis Ginter employees.

A close-up of the armature on the Spider Web. Other works have similar armature but this is a rare case of being able to see it directly. The willow you see has to be replaced about every three to 5 years.

Artist David Rodgers attaching two web halves.

The Spiderweb which is 12 feet by 12 feet is moved into position.

Knot tying skills come into play as the work was set into position.

We weren’t able to stay for the finishing touches you’ll have to head to Lewis Ginter and check that out on your own. Big Bugs will be in the gardens from Friday, May 27th to Sunday, August 28th. You can purchase tickets to Lewis Ginter here.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Enjoy Lunch Discussing Sharks and Dinosaurs at the Science Museum of Virginia

The Science Museum of Virginia’s free, noon-time Lunch Break Science series features two speakers focusing on shark-related topics and one speaker highlighting dinosaur skin this month.

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The Science Museum of Virginia’s free, noon-time Lunch Break Science series features two speakers focusing on shark-related topics and one speaker highlighting dinosaur skin this month. The Science Museum hosts a different speaker each Wednesday for a one-hour talk on a science, technology, engineering or math topic.

Why:
The Science Museum is celebrating all things sharks and skin this summer as they’re hosting the touring exhibitions “Planet Shark: Predator or Prey” and “Skin: Living Armor, Evolving Identity.” Lunch Break Sciences are one of the many extra program offerings the Science Museum is featuring to encourage guests to learn more about fascinating scientific elements of animals and humans.

When:
Guests can attend the following Lunch Break Science presentations:

Who:
Guests of all ages are welcome at Lunch Break Sciences, but the content is geared to an adult audience.

Shiffman and Houppermans will be presenting in person. Shiffman will also host a book signing of his latest book, “Why Sharks Matter: A Deep Dive with the World’s Most Misunderstood Predator,” after his July 6 talk. On July 13, Hendrickx will present via Zoom from Argentina.

How:
Lunch Break Sciences are free. Guests do not need to purchase Science Museum admission to attend, but do need to check in at Guest Services when they arrive.

Lunch Break Science events take place in the Science Museum’s Barbara Thalhimer Theater. Seating is first-come, first-served. The theater seats 125 guests.

As the name suggests, guests are welcome to bring food and drink to enjoy during Lunch Break Science. For guests who would like to purchase food onsite, the Science Museum has vending machines near the Rotunda and grab-and-go items in the café.

Where:
Science Museum of Virginia, 2500 W. Broad St., Richmond, VA 23220

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Cowardin Avenue & Bainbridge Street Hit and Run

The victim was attempting to cross the road and was struck by what eyewitnesses describe to be a dark color, purple/blue, older model sedan with distinctive wheel rims.

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From RPD

Saturday, July 2, at approximately 10:35 p.m., the Richmond Police Crash Team investigators responded to the intersection of Cowardin Avenue & Bainbridge Street for the report of a hit and run.

Investigators arrived and found an adult female pedestrian down and in the roadway. She was attempting to cross the road and was struck by what eyewitnesses describe to be a dark color, purple/blue, older model sedan with distinctive wheel rims. Investigators suspect the vehicle has frontend damage and was last seen headed north on Cowardin Avenue.

She was transported to a local hospital with life threatening injuries.

Anyone with further information about this incident is asked to contact RPD Crash Team Investigator W. Kress at 804-646-0280 or Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones may also be used. All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

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Shootings on July 3rd and Early July 4th Result in a Death and Six Injuries

Two separate unrelated incidents occurred. One at City Dogs in the Fan and another near Cyber Café on Broad Street.

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West Main Street Death Investigation

Sunday, July 3, at approximately 10:26 p.m., officers were called to the 1300 block of West Main Street for the report of random gunfire. RPD officers responded and located an adult male with an apparent gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Medical Examiner will determine the cause and manner of death.

Anyone with information about this death investigation is asked to contact

Major Crimes Detective A. Coates at (804)-646-0729 or Crime Stoppers at

(804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.

This RVA/Reddit thread has some unconfirmed details and first-hand reports on the City Dogs shooting.

Update July 5th:

Arrest Made, Victim Identified in West Main Street Homicide and Aggravated Assaults

The Richmond Police Department has charged the suspect in yesterday’s shootings on West Main Street. Derrick Adjei, 24, of Alexandria, Virginia, was taken into custody by Virginia State Police last night at approximately 11:01 p.m. after the vehicle Adjei had been operating was involved in a single vehicle collision on northbound I-95.

RPD detectives, investigating the West Main Street shooting, have charged Adjei with malicious wounding. Other charges are pending. A booking photo of Adjei is not yet available.

Detectives have identified the victim of the shooting as Kyle Stoner, 36, of Richmond. Sunday at approximately 10:28 p.m., officers were called to the 1300 block of West Main Street for the report of a shooting. RPD officers responded and located an adult male, Stoner, on a patio of a business, down and unresponsive suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Medical Examiner will determine the cause and manner of death.

An adult female and an adult male were also injured during the incident and have received treatment for injuries that were not considered life threatening.

Anyone with further information about this incident is asked to contact Major Crimes Detective A. Coates at (804)-646-0729 or Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.

West Broad Street Shooting

At approximately 3:39 a.m., Richmond Police officers responded to the report of random gunfire in the 00 block of West Broad Street. Six people were reported shot near the Cyber Café, an after-hours club including four adult males and two adult females.

Of the six who sustained gunshot wounds, two are considered life-threatening and four non-life threatening. One man was transported by ambulance, others were self-transported to the hospital for treatment.

There is no public threat at this time.

Anyone with information about this shooting investigation is asked to call Detective Reyes at (804) 646-3874 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.

 

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