More than $65,000 was raised at Saturday evening's auction of 14 blue heron statues. The birds had been perched throughout Winona since April as part of a fundraiser for the Winona Fine Arts Commission.
Artist Barb Halvorson's "The Garden of Sugarloaf" heron was the top bird, fetching $12,500. No minimum bid was set for the auction; however, the lowest starting bid was $1,000. The average winning bid was $4,600.
"It was a fabulous turnout," said project manager Natalie Siderius. "It was quite the eclectic crowd."
All of the statues were bought, with one being purchased outright before the auction. Winona artist Lynette Power designed the 7-foot high statues, with other area artists painting them with their own creative flair. Before each piece was auctioned off, the artist spoke a little about the inspiration behind the design.
"The auction is a good indication that the arts are an important part of this community," said Chad Ubl, community services director for the city of Winona.
The total raised from the auction was $65,500. Some of that money will be used for expenses related to the project. The rest goes to the Winona Fine Art Commission. Siderius hopes that money will help fund other public art projects.
"We want to continue to keep the arts out there in front of people," Siderius said.
Posters of the birds are available at the Winona Park-Rec office for $20.
Contact KÃ¤ri Knutson at email@example.com or (507) 453-3523.
Blue heron auction
Barb Halvorson, "The Garden of Sugarloaf," $12,500
Cynthia Jennings, "Backwater Shy Poke," $10,500
Patsy King, "Here-on the Mississipp," $5,000
Herb Hultgren, "Winnie the Blue," $4,500
Patty Albrecht, "Falling Apart at the Seams," $4,500
Mary Singer, "Winona Wings," $4,500
Matthew Semke, "Artist selected will be required to sign a contract," $3,750
Gayle Nottleman, "Artimus Heronimus," $3,500
Julia Crozier, "Lights, Camera, Heron," $3,500
Douglas Snyder, "Elvis Haaron Presley," $3,250
Lynelle Snyder, "This Little Birdy Went to Market," $3,000
Julia Crozier, "Brewbird," $3,000
Laura Birdsong, "No rEgrets only Heron Here-on," $3,000