Life finds a way: Dinosaur carving to be placed at CNCC Craig campus | CraigDailyPress.com

Life finds a way: Dinosaur carving to be placed at CNCC Craig campus

The velociraptor artwork "Blue," a Whittle the Wood carving recently placed at the college's Craig campus, alongside a mural of Walter the hadrosaur.
Courtesy Photo

Another dinosaur is set to grace the halls of Colorado Northwestern Community College’s Craig campus.

Ken Braun’s “Blue” — a depiction of a velociraptor from the film “Jurassic World — was deemed the winning carving in the 20th annual Whittle the Wood Rendezvous, taking first place overall, People’s Choice and co-winner of Artist’s Choice.

The piece was accidentally damaged soon after the event by overeager spectators attempting to take a photo with the dinosaur.

Though city staff were quick to repair it, the concern remained about future mishaps. leading CNCC personnel to offer to house Blue in its Dinosaur Hall.

CNCC President Ron Granger said in a news release the topic came up at the June Board of Control meeting as CNCC’s James Caldwell, vice president of of administrative services teamed with Craig City Councilor Brian MacKenzie, a former CNCC employee, “to facilitate and finalize the move of Blue to CNCC.”

City staff are still in the midst of placing the new bundle of Whittle the Wood carvings around Craig, some of which have already been finalized, including Bongo Love’s “The Sweet Life,” a pair of hummingbirds, at Craig Chamber of Commerce; Robert Lyon’s “Horse of Course,” at Moffat County Fairgrounds; while several will be placed at Breeze Park with others yet to be determined.

Blue will join the to-scale mural depicting Walter, the name given to the hadrosaur fossil currently housed at the college.

“This great collaboration between CNCC and the City of Craig provides a safe place to display Blue while also highlighting CNCC’s designation as a U.S. Bureau of Land Management fossil repository,” the release said.

“We are happy to help preserve this beautiful work of art.”, stated John Anderson, CNCC’s VP of student services for the Craig campus. “CNCC will be a great location to house and protect Blue while still allowing the public access to admire him. He will be in good company with Walter and some of the other amazing pieces in our paleo program.”

CNCC will host a free event from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 29 to feature more information about the paleontology program.