WINTER PARK, Florida (AP) – A little rain didn’t stop a day at Rollins College, Florida, as school officials unveiled a sculpture in honor of alumnus and beloved children’s television presenter Mr. Rogers.
Rollins President Grant Cornwell and others held umbrellas during Thursday’s private ceremony as they drew the curtain on a bronze depiction of Rogers in his iconic sweater and tennis shoes, a work titled “Nice Day for a Neighbor”.
“This inspiring sculpture will be a constant reminder of the ideals and values that Mr. Rogers formed as he sought to make the world a better place,” Cornwell said during a ceremony at a private college of liberal arts in Winter Park, northeast of Orlando. .
Years before the world recognized him as Mr. Rogers, Fred McFeely Rogers in 1948 transferred to Rollins College and graduated in 1951, the school says. He graduated in music composition and served as chairman of his fraternity and chairman of the committee on interfaith and racial relations. He also met his future wife at school. In 1974 he received the honorary title of school.
Rogers was best known for writing and appearing in 912 episodes of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood,” which ran on public television from 1968 to 2001. died in 2003. In recent years, he has been the subject of a popular documentary as well as a feature film starring Tom Hanks.
He designed the 360-degree sculpture Paul Day, a British artist known for his public monuments. The bronze cast is more than 7 feet (2 meters) high and weighs more than 3,000 pounds (1,360 kilograms). It features Rogers surrounded by children, hand puppets from his show, lyrics from the themed song series and the Neighborhood Trolley show.
“I hope this piece will bring joy and inspiration to many people, just as‘ Mister Rogers ’Neighborhood has been for generations,” Day said.
The sculpture will be part of the school Mister Rogers walk.