DETROIT — Designers often hope for an opportunity to make a meaningful mark on history. Now, they have a chance as the Belle Isle Aquarium celebrates a milestone — its 110th birthday. The Belle Isle Aquarium is hosting a Weathervane Design Competition that begins today.
The winning entrant will receive a $500 prize. The weathervane design will adorn the Belle Isle Aquarium’s cupola. The design competition, sponsored by the law firm of Butzel Long, is open to U.S. citizens at least 18 years of age (a maximum of one entry per person). Submissions are due at midnight on Aug. 29. Entry forms can be downloaded at belleisleconservancy.org. Submissions will be reviewed by a five-person Belle Isle Aquarium weathervane jury for merit and feasibility. The winning designer will be notified by Sept. 12. The winning design will be announced Sept. 19 during a private party at the Belle Isle Aquarium.
“Butzel Long’s ties to the Belle Isle Aquarium date back to 1899 when Leo Butzel’s cousin David Heineman introduced a bill to construct a combined aquarium and horticultural building in Belle Isle Park,” says Richard E. Rassel, chairman, Butzel Long.
“The Belle Isle Aquarium is a hidden gem in our community,” Rassel says. “At the time it opened in 1904, the Belle Isle Aquarium was the third largest public aquarium in the world. The winning entrant’s design is historic because the weathervane will be something that can be enjoyed by families today as well as by future generations.”