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Sculptor Doug Roper Designs Bronze Sculpture for Morgan's Wonderland Park
Date:2/24/2010

e was cast in over two hundred pieces and assembled like a giant jigsaw puzzle. The entire process from Roper’s first meeting to the installation of the sculpture took one year.

“No doubt ‘Taking Flight’ will be one of the most-photographed elements of Morgan’s Wonderland,” says philanthropist Gordon Hartman, whose 16-year-old daughter, Morgan, is the inspiration for the park. “This beautiful work of art shows a butterfly ready to spread its wings and soar. Likewise, it’s our fervent desire for anyone with special needs to soar beyond any physical or mental challenges.”

Once the sculptures were complete, the two hands (3,100 lbs. each) were moved into place using telescopic handlers and welded in place on two 48’ piers. “The staff of the Deep in the Heart Art Foundry’s team from Bastrop, Texas employed amazing skill and patience throughout the creative process and installation,” says Roper.

“My hope is that those who view this sculpture will be inspired to become unfettered and take flight while they are at the park and beyond,” says Roper. “I received only a fraction of what I would have charged other clients, but it was my pleasure and joy to donate my time and design fees to Morgan’s Wonderland. The facility is absolutely amazing and will be the vehicle that will open up new adventures to those who have experienced obstacles. I am truly blessed to be associated with this wonderful endeavor.”

Having dealt with several physical and cognitive challenges such as a congenital heart defect, dyslexia and ADHD, Roper was moved by the significance of the project. “My experiences have helped me to be more aware of what courage it takes to live a full and meaningful life, in spite of difficulties.” Roper adds. “My wife of 36 years is the Director of the Achievers’ Center for Education, a small
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