Monday, July 14, 2014

Annie the Dragon

In 1971, Florida artist Louis VanDercar constructed an enormous hollow dragon statue on an outcropping of rock on the Space Coast's Merritt Island. Popular for children to play inside, it was affectionately known as "Annie". After Warren McFadden took over the property in 1981, he used it for many fundraising events for charities like Yellow Umbrella Abused Children Foundation. McFadden made a number of additions and improvements to the statue, such as rigging it to shoot flames out its nostrils on the 4th of July.

Unfortunately, the sculpture partially collapsed into the water and fell apart during a storm in August 2002. The owner and the Brevard County government were unable to come up with a mutually viable plan to rehabilitate it. In 2008, a developer planned a luxury hotel/spa on the site and promised to reconstruct the dragon as the hotel's centerpiece, but like so many developer's promises, it never to came to pass. Many have tried to mount campaigns to bring the sculpture back, but all have stalled. Oddly, it seems virtually everyone in the area wants it to be rebuilt, so why hasn't it?

Above: Annie in her heyday. Below: An old postcard depicting the outcropping before Annie's construction.

1 comment:

  1. The photo at the top was taken by Bradford Martin and is copyrighted. You may purchase a print at You can purchase a license by contacting me using that site.