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A Bird on a Mission

Photo, Susan Patten, Townsquare Media

With its distinctive red beak and crown, this nameless, cardinal-like sculpture sits quietly as a symbol of giving.

Clearly a little out of the ordinary, its designer hopes those who see it will remember the spirit of the holiday season once all the hub-bub calms down. Typically people through the holidays find that “little extra” to support those who are less fortunate.

The United Way of Eastern Maine however starts their Pantry Project food drive campaign in January when the need is still great, and that’s right where this bird is headed.

Designer Allison Strange is a 2010 graduate of the University of Maine who earned her Masters Degree in Fine Arts, with a background in sculpture.

This is her fourth non-perishable food item sculpture she’s done for Hollywood Casino in Bangor. The first year the sculpture was a tree, followed by two snowmen, and then a polar bear last year.

Strange collaborates with the employees to come up with a design idea and to order the appropriate food product from vendors, which is then donated to the food drive.

This bird stands about 6 feet tall and is made up of 1500 cans of soup, packaged coffee, and NutriGrain bars.

Strange says the first year she created a food sculpture it took her roughly 40 hours to construct but now she says she’s down to about 20 hours.

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