Project Bulldog is back in full swing — only this time, the mascots are miniature.
The town-wide art project has made its return within the with the introduction of miniature bulldog collectibles, or "Project Bulldog Next Generation," as founder Ira Friedman likes to call it.
"We're very excited about the mini replicas," Friedman said. "We're getting a very good response, and that's in the absence of having a finished sample to show."
The anticipated bulldogs are 12-inches long, and a perfect imitation of the 38 bulldogs that were displayed around the community last year. Instead of being decorated, the bite-size bulldogs come as a blank vinyl canvas so each individual can customize theirs as they choose.
"They make a great keepsake," Friedman said of the new additions. He explained that students have free range to paint the items, use them for autographs from friends or educators or keep it in its original, mint condition.
Project Bulldog originated in the summer of 2009 by Friedman and a team of students, artists and volunteers. Thirty eight larger-than-life bulldogs were decorated and put on display around the Hewlett-Woodmere community.
"I wanted to do something to give back to the place where I grew up and to support the school district that has done some very good things for my daughters," said Friedman, who is also an alumni of .
At the end of the town showcase, all 38 custom designed mascots were brought to the public library for a ceremony before being sold.
Susan De Sciora, director of the Hewlett-Woodmere Public Library, was shocked at how much the event brought local residents together. "It was probably one of the most lively and successul things that I have ever seen in the community," she said.
After the final exhibit, the statues were auctioned off at the in Hewlett where the Art Honor Society Bulldog scholarship, the Project Bulldog Scholarship and the Bulldog Visual Art Education Trust.
Although the bulldogs will not arrive until March, the school district is already accepting orders in advanced. Each bulldog costs $25, and order forms can be printed from the Project Bulldog website.