More than a symbol

Published 3:19 pm Tuesday, April 1, 2008

By Staff
They can’t be eaten, but they can be adopted.
Sixteen of the 32 giant crab sculptures that are part of the Crabs on the Move project have been adopted, with the “adoption” fees — ranging from $500 to $1,000 — going to area charities. That’s reason enough to adopt one of the crabs.
The remaining crabs will be auctioned during the Crab Ball Gala and Auction on April 12 at the Washington Civic Center, again with the proceeds going to area charities and nonprofit groups.
Two years ago, the Pine Needles Garden Club started its Crabs on the Move initiative as a community art project and way to raise money for charities and organizations like the Boys and Girls Club, Zion Shelter, Beaufort County Humane Society and OPTIONS to Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault. To date, the crabs have generated at least $8,000 for those entities.
The Pine Needles Garden Club also wanted the giant crabs to become one of Washington’s identifying symbols.
To obtain one of the crabs, a sponsor made a $1,500 donation, completed an application and paid for the cost of “embellishing” a crab, which meant some area artists earned money for their efforts to embellish the crabs.
The crabs are being displayed around Washington and in Pantego, Belhaven, Aurora and Chocowinity.
The crabs — 6 feet long, 6 feet wide and made of fiberglass — have become more than one of Washington’s identifying symbols.
The Crabs on the Move project has been successful in more ways than just raising money for charities and nonprofit groups. It brought visitors to the area. It created a public-art project that’s had a positive effect on the city.
The Pine Needles Garden Club, crab sponsors and crab adopters have provided a great service to the greater Washington community. The Crabs on the Move project has made it easier for area charities and nonprofit groups to accomplish their missions. The project has allowed area artists to show off their talents. It’s brought people to the city and other Beaufort County locales to view the crab sculptures, with some of those folks spending more time, possibly money, in the community.
Many of the 16 crabs adopted so far will remain on display so the public may enjoy them. Hopefully, the majority of the crustacean sculptures, once they’ve all found homes, will continue to be displayed publicly as reminders of the Beaufort County community coming together for an excellent cause.