With heritage as a theme for this years show I found delight in once again painting the church on Mirror Lake in celebration of the building being one hundred years old. And, to give a unique twist from the over painted church and swans images that people tend to favor, I placed an elegant shorebird flying past like fleeting thoughts of spring that warms the soul during the cold harsh winters. This female American Avocet in breeding attire is headed for its nesting ground at the nearby reservoir. In alternate winter plumage the head and neck of the avocet is white or grayish color. The male and female are similar with the difference being that the female has a more re-curved bill than the male. It is a true North American species that winters in California and New Mexico and breeds from eastern New Mexico north through the plains where there are shallow lakes and north into Alberta and Saskatchewan.
The Protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Catholic Church that overlooks Mirror Lake is a building that gracefully denies its age. The 100 year old structure has become a well known scenic landmark as the subject of many painters and photographers over the years. The church was initially “constructed in 1909 by St. Francis Xavier Roman Catholic Parish.” In 1927 the building was “sold to the Grace Lutheran Church” then later “sold to the Bethel Lutheran congregation” whereupon it was moved to its present day site in 1953. Then in 1986 this quaint little church was sold once again, this time to the Ukrainian Catholic congregation. This little church may have many tales to tell as it has housed both western and eastern Catholic and Evangelical ceremonies through out its centurion history.
“Quotes and dates” exerted from WCR sept 26/05