Cattle Drive Sculpture

Cattle Drive Sculpture Project 
Fundraising Campaign

All images from Brownwood Villages that the project will be based on.
Photos by Andrew Tomlin

About the Project

Okeechobee Main Street’s Arts & Culture Alliance is in the planning stages of bringing into Okeechobee, a nine-piece bronze cattle drive sculpture.

The project is inspired by a similar installation located at the Brownwood Villages near Leesburg and also as a way to celebrate the upcoming 500-year anniversary of the first cattle coming in to Florida. In 1521 the earliest Spanish explorers and seven Andalusia cattle arrived on Florida’s shores. Ponce De Leon was their leader. Most people believe these cattle are the first domesticated cattle in the United States. They also believe they are the original ancestors of the hearty scrub cattle we still have in Florida today.

The project will be nine bronze sculptures (full + 1/4 size) and will include a horse with rider, calf, dog and six heads of cattle. They will represent a historical cattle drive, celebrating the ranching lifestyle in Okeechobee County, as well as celebrate the anniversary of the first cattle coming into Florida (completion of the 2-year project will correspond with this milestone).

At this time, the sculptor selected to create the project is  J. Michael Wilson, a celebrated sculptor who created the project at the Villages. He has a vast history of creating larger-than-life size (award winning) sculptures, not only at the Villages but across the western states.

The project will be installed in City of Okeechobee - Flagler Park #5. Initial plan is to have the cattle drive meandering on the grass alongside of the sidewalk with native plants added for an authentic setting. Visitors will be able to walk along the sidewalks and feel like they are in the middle of the cattle drive and will be able to read about the history of local ranchers.

The project will be easily viewed from State Road 70 with easy access in and out. Historically, this is also near the path of cattle drives coming through Okeechobee many years ago.

The Arts & Culture Alliance’s mission is to connect people to the arts and to each other. We want our art projects to celebrate the uniqueness of our community. This exhibit will not only be a celebration of Okeechobee ranchers, but will also be an interactive installation containing historical content within the exhibit.

We are confident this project will draw a lot of attention, not only from the locals, but also from out of town visitors coming to see this installation and the other arts in Okeechobee. This will also be an economic plus for the downtown businesses, as well as the rest of the City and County.

Sponsorship Opportunities
Coming Soon!
Want to be a part of this majestic and historic project?
Opportunities for the community and ranchers will be available soon!
All images in slide show from Brownwood Villages that the project will be based on.
Sculptor/Artist: J. Michael Wilson
Photos by Andrew Tomlin