The Elizabeth River Trail Foundation is thrilled to announce the completion of its major donor sculpture, THREE, by local artists Ellenburg & Shaffer during a virtual ribbon cutting on July 13 at 10 am. Special guests include Norfolk Mayor Kenneth C. Alexander, ERT Foundation Board Chair Charles McPhillips and artists George Ellenburg and Avery Shaffer.

Inspired by Norfolk's dynamic waterfront, the elegant design features three freestanding sails fabricated in glass and steel. Located on the small plot of land to the west of the Pagoda, the sculpture will anchor the Elizabeth River Trail’s presence along the downtown riverfront.

“This dynamic three-part sculpture shifts in size and color according to viewer perspective and time of day - much like the river by which it stands and symbolizes the ever-steady, but ever-changing vantage point provided by the Elizabeth River Trail,” said Shaffer. “The three minimal sails are made of an airy painted steel and kiln-formed glass and are grounded by a silhouette of undulating poured concrete bases. Depth carved, hand-made, kiln-formed glass is a signature component of the work of Ellenburg & Shaffer, and we are proud to share this work with the good folks of Hampton Roads as an emblem of the hard work, resources and dedication that resulted in this waterfront trail.”

This sculpture honors the donors who made ERT’s $4-million comprehensive capital campaign a success. Generous sponsors include Sentara Healthcare, City of Norfolk, Hampton Roads Community Foundation, PRA Group, TowneBank Foundation, Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters, Hampton Roads Shipping Association, Landmark Foundation, The Patricia and Douglas Perry Foundation, Virginia Maritime Association and more.

“Our donors are making it possible for our foundation to achieve its mission of creating the most iconic urban riverfront trail in the country,” said Cheryl White, executive director of ERT.

The public is invited to join the virtual ribbon-cutting on Facebook Live at

The Elizabeth River Trail Foundation’s mission is to promote, enhance and transform the Elizabeth River Trail into the most iconic urban riverfront trail in the country. The ERT runs 10.5 miles and connects businesses, historic attractions and 28 neighborhoods within a five-minute walk. The multi-use trail is designed for walking, running and biking. It comprises 12 sections and 12 trailheads from Norfolk State University to NIT Terminals along the Elizabeth River. Highlights include Harbor Park, Downtown Norfolk, Freemason Historic District, Sentara campus, Fort Norfolk, Chelsea, West Ghent, Lambert’s Point, Old Dominion University, Larchmont and Lochhaven. For more information, visit

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