Although the Burlington High School teacher has the holiday off, he is still hard at work. Local artist Chris Sharp has dedicated the last five years of his life to constructing the perfect statue of Martin Luther King Jr.
Several years ago, the New York Times and Washington Post announced the need for an artistic and respectful sculpture of Rev. King. After doing some research, Sharp was certain that he was the man for the job.
"I don't have to make just a single figure, because MLK is more than could be captured in a single figure," Sharp said.
Sharp decided to combine two portraits of King in order to represent his compassion and iconic "I Have a Dream" speech. In 2011, Sharp sent 17 brass sculptures to a wide range of locations across the nation, most notably the White House. The responses were nothing but positive. He explained that the schools were his favorite recipients, "I'll get an email every now and then from the art teacher or the librarian, and they'll take a picture with a bunch of kids in front of the sculpture and the kids are just so happy to be there."
Sharp has now set his eyes on a bigger goal-- a life-size sculpture of King.
"I went with the smaller versions so I could reach as many people as possible, but on the 50th anniversary I thought that this would be a great opportunity to rally support to make a large version," Sharp said.
By the spring of 2014, Sharp hopes to have completed and installed the life-size sculpture.
"I'd like to donate the sculpture to Birmingham, Alabama, from the people of Burlington, from the people of the United States, in commemoration of the 'I Have a Dream' speech, and in commemoration of the fact that our country has the power to change and make things better," Sharp said.
Although he paid for the individual sculptures himself, this larger project comes with higher costs. The sculpture will cost an estimated $160,000 and thousands of hours in manual labor.
"My hopes for the whole project is that this project will continue the legacy of learning about Dr. King and what he had to offer our country-- the changes that were important-- to what makes America what it is today," Sharp said.
With roughly $2,000 already raised and hundreds of emails and calls from supporters, he is hopeful that the project will happen on schedule.
Tuesday, June 18 2013 11:55 PM EDT2013-06-19 03:55:09 GMT
An award winning journalist from Vermont has died.Michael Hastings was killed early Tuesday morning in a car accident in Los Angeles.Hastings was best known for his Rolling Stones article on General StanleyMore >>
Michael Hastings was killed early Tuesday morning in a car accident in Los Angeles.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 11:54 PM EDT2013-06-19 03:54:26 GMT
Bennington Rural Fire Station was packed with people and support for the 15 members recently suspended over their part in an annual stunt. "Do you realize these are the real heroes of America?" askedMore >>
Bennington Rural Fire Station was packed with people and support for the 15 members recently suspended over their part in an annual stunt.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 11:53 PM EDT2013-06-19 03:53:55 GMT
Glen Goodall served in the South Pacific during World War II, now the Williamstown vet is in Washington D.C. for two very special honors.Tuesday marked the 94-year-old's first trip to the nation's capitalMore >>
Glen Goodall served in the South Pacific during World War II, now the Williamstown vet is in Washington DC for two very special honors.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:41 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:41:56 GMT
Former Bennington Rural Fire Department chief Joseph Hayes pleaded not guilty Monday to embezzlement charges stemming from a department-sponsored raffle when he was chief. Participants told police theyMore >>
A former chief at the Bennington Rural Fire Department faces embezzlement charges and 16 volunteers are in hot water over another incident. As allegations of misconduct stack up, some residents are worried about their safety.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:54 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:54:27 GMT
Court documents indicate New York's Chinese mafia may be involved in prostitution at a Chittenden County spa. Tuesday morning, landlord Thomas Booska pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor charge. A tenantMore >>
A landlord has denied charges related to prostitution at an alleged sex spa in Williston. And court documents indicate New York's Chinese Mafia may be involved in prostitution in Vermont.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 12:13 PM EDT2013-06-18 16:13:18 GMT
A Hopkinton, New York man is behind bars, accused of promoting prostitution. Police say Monday, they searched 60-year-old Dean Lamphere's house and business -- Lamphere's General Trucking and Repair.More >>
A Hopkinton, N.Y., man is behind bars, accused of promoting prostitution.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 10:00 AM EDT2013-06-18 14:00:51 GMT
A New Haven man says he was trying to stop another man from cutting down his neighbor's trees, but police say firing shots wasn't the way to do it. Police say on Sunday, 72-year-old David Milson firedMore >>
A New Haven man says he was trying to stop another man from cutting down his neighbor's trees, but police say firing shots wasn't the way to do it.More >>