Sponsored by Julianne Hansen Fine Art & Pottery, the Alabama Poppy Project is a program inspired by the many individuals who have given their lives in service to their country. Around the world, the Poppy has been used as a symbol of remembrance of those who have died while in the service of a country they love.
It all started with a man, a poem written in the midst of war after the burial of a brother in arms.
The poem was written by Lt. Col. John McRae remarking of the poppies that were growing between the crosses and the kind of legacy does war leave.
Steven and Julianne Hansen worked tirelessly along with Hansen Fine Art staff and volunteers to roll, cut, shape, glaze, kiln fire and "plant" over 1,000 ceramic poppies in 2020 all while a worldwide pandemic basically shut down virtually all Memorial Day celebrations. While her gallery, Hansen Fine Art & Pottery was closed during state mandated shut-downs, Julianne was still able to keep her employee busy working independently at her gallery studio, while making the poppies at her home studio. Steven, who usually works at Maxwell Air Force Base, was working remotely from home during the day and handling the glazing and two kiln firings each poppy needed prior to being ready for the outdoor exhibit.
"We knew we could continue with the exhibit, because it was outdoor in the open, social distancing was more than feasible and individuals could enjoy the field of poppies at any time of day without risk of exposure to anyone," She said. "It truly was such a moving experience."
Each poppy can be sponsored for $45 and named in memory of a friend or family member who served in the armed forces, but is no longer living. The name of the individual is added to a white satin ribbon in gold lettering, and tied to the poppy for the week-long exhibition.
At the conclusion of the event, the poppy is then ready to be picked up by the sponsor, shipped or donated back to the event for use in the following year's exhibit.
$10 from each $45 sponsorship is divided and given to several non-profit organizations that support the memory of our fallen or the families they left behind.
This drone footage was taken during the 2020 Poppy Project with over 1,000 handmade poppies on display in historic downtown Prattville, Alabama.
This video shows how beautifully the poppies seem to fit in the grassy area next to the Prattville Gin Shop Dam on Autauga Creek.
Sponsor a Poppy
For just $45, you can sponsor a poppy in the name of a friend or loved one who has served in the armed forces, who is no longer living.
Your poppy will be displayed along with the name of the person whom you are honoring for one week. At the conclusion of the exhibit, you may come pick up your poppy, or choose to donate it back to the event for future use.
Once you have sponsored a poppy, you will be emailed instructions on how to pick up your flower after the event has concluded.
Volunteer to Help
Planting 2,000 Ceramic Poppies is a huge undertaking, and you can certainly help with the installation, security or break down of the event. Click below to let us know how you would like to help. We will contact you soon to confirm your participation.