Friday | July 29, 2022
Capital funding for The Rabbit hOle continues to grow. Major gifts in July from the Merriman Family and the Hall Family Foundation have advanced our capital position dramatically as we prepare to launch the final public phase of our capital campaign in October. These crucial contributions ensure the steady continuation of building renovations through the end of 2022 and keep us on course to open the museum in 2023. Heartfelt thanks to the Hall Family Foundation and the Merriman Family for their generosity and trust, and to all of our supporters at every level who have kept our momentum strong in 2022!
Today is Pete's birthday. All he wants for his birthday is donations in his honor.
Frog & Toad, one of the most beloved series in children’s literature, is an emblem of the artistry and legacy of children’s book creator, Arnold Lobel. 

The Rabbit hOle’s design for our Frog and Toad exhibit takes visitors on a journey through their world in shifting scale. As you look up at larger than life grasses and cattails, you might feel like Frog wandering along a river bank. As you look down, you might feel like a human again as you see a Toad sized house...but watch out, there's a huge snake ahead! The Rabbit hOle’s fabricators are working large and small to make this design come to life - creating scale miniatures of Frog and Toad’s houses, welding giant metal flowers, and carving low lying rock formations from foam and wood.
Scribe sketches out the design of Frog and Toad in 3D to better understand the environment
Rosie works on the metal armature for a rather sizable fern
A toad sized house for Toad
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Building renovations reached a benchmark in July with the completion of the first of three construction packages. This initial package encompassed the first floor and included the walls, plumbing supply runs, ductwork, lighting and electrical work.

The second construction package will encompass the basement level and include several sensitive areas in and around the Grotto area that are currently being excavated (see below.) This work is set to begin in September.

The third package encompasses the second floor and all remaining finishes, and will begin in late October or early November. Meanwhile, our fabrication staff continues to grow along with our exhibits as we strive to reach full production levels before the end of the summer. 

Also this month, with the help of our friends at the Sunderland Foundation, we completed some vital infrastructure repairs that were not in our original construction scope, including a new fire sprinkler pump for the museum and a brand new roof for our fabrication shops on the back of the building. Let it rain!
Completed walls at the future cafe entrance to The Rabbit hOle
A view of the east wall of the Tons of Fun Room, viewed from the cafe
A journey along the interior wall of the
As construction intensifies, so does our investigation of curious discoveries deep within the Rabbit hOle. A preliminary incident report and statement was released to our board of directors, part of which has been cleared for public release:
We hope this clears things up.
Book Pairing - Frog and Toad are Friends, written by Arnold Lobel, paired with Mrs. Field's Blue Ribbon Chocolate Chip Cookies. Pairing by Mary Clara, Rabbit hOle office manager and sometimes baker.
There are certain things that transport me sideways in time to childhood - lightning bugs in the yard, the sound of a VHS tape rewinding, Mrs. Field’s chocolate chip cookie recipe (our household copy lies in tatters in my mom’s recipe folder), the smell of No-Ad sunscreen, Ricky Martin. Reading Frog & Toad, written and illustrated by Arnold Lobel, is one such experience. Thumbing through the pages and revisiting the illustrations triggers dormant memories, like watching a movie I’ve already seen but forgotten.

Frog & Toad stories hold lessons that hit differently as an adult. Some days, retroactively adding “wake up” to my to-do list can feel like an accomplishment when all I want to do is sleep until May. Exercising will power in the face of "too much of a good thing"…I still haven't mastered that one! I find the moment when Toad’s list flies away in a gust of wind especially resonant, following a collective moment in history when all our plans and dreams flew out the window in a matter of days and we sat like proverbial bumps on a log trying to figure out what to do next. The best part is that Frog sat right alongside Toad, steadfast in his love and support for his friend. Right now, throwing the to-do list out the window and baking cookies to share with friends feels most important when the world is swirling around, beating against the windows.

Mrs. Field's Blue Ribbon Chocolate Chip Cookies:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup dark brown sugar packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup butter
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips

  • Preheat your oven to 300 °F.
  • Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium sized bowl. Set aside.
  • In a bowl attached to a stand mixer equipped with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars together until creamy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated completely. Add in the vanilla, beat again. 
  • Beat in the flour mixture until just combined, then add in the chocolate chips. Stir to distribute the chips evenly throughout the dough.
  • Drop by rounded tablespoonful onto ungreased cookie sheets, approximately 2 inches apart.
  • Bake in the oven from 18-22 minutes.
  • Cool on the sheets for 3-5 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack (or a paper bag like my mom) to cool completely.
Lose a button? The Rabbit hOle's enamel pins make a great replacement in an emergency! Visit our online shop to stock up and support The Rabbit hOle.
Watch This!
Amphibians may not have scales, but our Frog and Toad exhibit has a full range of them! Designed to alter your perspective from that of a human to that of Frog and Toad, the scale of your surroundings changes throughout the space. At one point you might peer in Toad's small house, but in just a few steps find yourself dwarfed by daisies and other riverbank flora.
Social Circle
Do you like reels, book art, and exhibit updates? If you said "yes," The Rabbit hOle's social media is for you! Follow us on social media for more Rabbit hOle magic.
Curious to see what else is up our sleeves? Visit our website to read more about our mission, exhibits, and other exciting progress