Elephants on Parade

You’ve heard of Party Animals and Pandamonium. Now it’s time for Elephants on Parade

If you’ve been to Washington, DC in the last five or so years, you may have seen some real Party Animals or experienced a bit of Panda Mania. Well, it’s DC’s turn to step aside as Amsterdam plays host to a pack of colorful pachyderm from September 5th through October 31st for the Elephant Parade.

This collection of 100 elephants – whose predecessors were previously seen in Rotterdam and Antwerp – is the brain child of father/son team Mike and Marc Spits and are modeled after real live baby Asian elephants. Local and international artists painted the elephants which are to be auctioned off on Novemeber 12th at Zuiveringshal Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam following a pre-bidding auction November 3-11.

Proceeds accrued from the auction will be donated to Elephant Family, the world’s largest charity for elephants. The hope is to raise money and publicity for the Asian Elephant. With only 40-50,000 in the world today (16,000 of which live in captivity), the Asian elephant – numbered at 300,000 at the turn of the 20th century – is undoubtedly headed for extinction. The efforts in Antwerp and Rotterdam in 2007 raised over €700,000 and the upcoming auction in Amsterdam is expected to do even better.

This past Friday, on my way into a meeting in Amsterdam, I happened to catch a few along Rokin and on Spui. Not having heard of the display, it was an unexpected, yet very pleasant surprise. And, of course I took the opportunity to snap a few pictures to share! More elephants can be seen in the following locations.

  • Museumplein
  • Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal
  • Koningsplein
  • Westermarkt
  • Jodenbreestraat
  • Kalvertoren
  • Amstelveld
  • Frederiksplein
  • and Nieuwmarkt

If you must miss this go around, however, don’t fret. More parades are being planned for France, Belgium, and Thailand. Enjoy the photos! If you have additional ones that you would like to share, leave a link. Do you have an account of your own run-in with the tusked beasts that you’d like to tell us about in a comment? I’d love to hear from you. :0)

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