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Don Boyd | all galleries >> Memories of Old Hialeah, Old Miami and Old South Florida Photo Galleries - largest non-Facebook collection on the internet >> South Florida SHOPPING CENTERS, STORES, and MALLS Historical Photos Gallery - All Years - click on image to view > 1960s - the Sea Horse fountain at Dadeland Shopping Center
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1960s - the Sea Horse fountain at Dadeland Shopping Center
1960's Malls of America Blogspot

1960s - the Sea Horse fountain at Dadeland Shopping Center

Kendall Drive and the Palmetto Expressway, Miami


This fountain was the centerpiece of the open-air Dadeland in the 60's. The sea horse was one of a series of animal statues in the original mall - others were a Llama and a turtle.

Dadeland Shopping Center was built on a 63-acre tract north of North Kendall Drive and just east of the Palmetto Expressway which opened in June 1961. The shopping center was single level and open-air when it opened on October 1, 1962. Joseph Meyerhoff developed the center and it was designed by Herbert Johnson. The center was anchored by a Miami-based Burdines Department Store and other stores in the original center included a Food Fair, a Gray Drugs, a Forum Cafeteria, Crown Liquors, a Barefoot Mailman and 50+ other original tenants.

In 1965 Jordan Marsh opened a 210,000 square foot store on the west end of the mall and J. C. Penney added a 193,000 square foot store to the east end of the mall in 1969. A seven story parking garage was constructed on the north side of Burdines in 1969. I believe the shopping center was enclosed and air-conditioned in the late 60's/early 70's.

The mall received a major renovation in 1983. Saks Fifth Avenue added a 78,600 square foot store and The Limited/Express added a 76,600 square foot store, both in 1984. Lord & Taylor added a 150,000 square foot store in 1986 and a five story parking garage was constructed between the mall and the canal on the north side of the mall.

The Jordan Marsh store closed in 1991 and reopened as a Burdines Home Store in 1993. Burdine's became Burdines/Macy's in 2004 and Macy's in 2005.

Lord & Taylor closed in 2003 and the building was torn down to construct a new 150,000 square foot Nordstrom store in 2005.

Dadeland Mall now has 1,667,500 square feet of leasable space and over 185 stores and services.


other sizes: small original
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Don Boyd23-Jul-2013 07:03
Guest of 22-JUL-2013, you're right, I just read about the new wing where The Limited/Express used to be and the article said they are still adding stores and restaurants to the wing. I'll take some photos in the near future and add them to the site.

Don
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Guest 22-Jul-2013 03:11
Well, aren't you guys forgetting about the New Kendall Wing located where The Limited/Express used to be? It's been open since late March. Oh and can someone send me pictures of the inside of The Limited/Express? I never went in there but I heard it was nice. My email is okashiiygnv@gmail.com if you have some pictures or maybe even video from the inside. Thanks!
Guest 24-Dec-2012 04:01
I remember the lighting in the parking lot was as such that at night you couldn't tell what color your car was.
Guest 10-Oct-2012 23:58
Does anyone remember the name of the mall manager back in the 60's. I think his last name was Montinero.
Scott 09-Oct-2012 15:46
Does anyone oknow waht ever happened to the horse or where is it now?

YES, there is a Seahorse that is currently located right off of US 1 by the Museum of Science. If it is not the original is't an exact replica.
Guest 30-May-2012 18:28
THE SHOPPING CENTERWAS FIRST REFERRED TO AS DEADLAND DUE TO ITS REMOTENESS--J MUDD
Guest 30-May-2012 18:22
THE DEVFELOPERS OF THE DADELAND SHOPPING CENTER HAD FIRST PLANNED TO BUILD A CENTER ON A TRACT OF LAND IN CORAL GABLES ACROSS FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI--WHEN THEY COULDNT GET ZONING APPROVAL THEY MOVED THE CENTER TO ITS PRESENT SITE--J MUDD
Leighton 09-Mar-2012 01:28
Scroll down - read the posts. I found out what happened to it.......
Guest 04-Mar-2012 14:52
Does anyone oknow waht ever happened to the horse or where is it now?
MikeM 31-Dec-2011 08:10
I grew up in Key West, FL. When I was a kid (early 70s) my family would travel to Miami for Christmas shopping. I remember the Dadeland Seahorse in the then enclosed mall. I was wondering if anyone else remembered that in the Dadeland Burdines they had a track up near the ceiling that ran through several parts of the store and had some comical characters traveling along on it. It might have been done for only Christmas, but I'm not sure. I would love to see a picture of it.
Guest 23-Apr-2011 03:24
A Miami native from the '70's, this horse is a wonderful memory. My grandfather and I would throw coins in the fountain. It was later enclosed by a remodel.
mjones09-Mar-2011 04:33
I remember doing that. We lived close to South Miami Jr.High. On a Sunday we would ride our bikes over to Burdines' second floor parking lot, get going as fast as we could down the ramp and coast all the way down to the Food Fair.
David 22-Feb-2011 14:31
We used to ride our bikes to the parking lot after the stores closed & take turns towing each other in the shopping carts using our bikes. What fun!! It was a huge parking lot and lots of room to really get fast, scary rides in a shopping cart. I also remember when they "soaped the dragon" one night. I think my brother & his friends were in on that. The next morning, it was in the news that someone(s) poured a few bottles of soap in the fountain and the next morning it was covered in suds! That was when the mall was first built and the interior was open and accessible, including the fountain
Guest 20-Feb-2011 19:30
I worked at Forum Cafeteria in '71. I remember Dadeland had to change the parking lot lights. It was advertised their lights wouldn't cast a shadow, only problem was folks couldn't find their cars at night because they all looked the same color under those lights.
Don Boyd22-Jan-2011 07:42

My memory tells me that it was on the west leg, west of Burdines, about halfway down to Jordan Marsh on the west end. This would be where the food court to Cheesecake Factory north-south leg is now and there's another art work there in the center where the east-west and north-south legs meet. Back then it was an entrance/exit to/from the mall from both the north and south parking lots.

Don
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Guest 21-Jan-2011 20:27
Don, thank you so much for this site! Does anyone remember exactly what part of the mall the seahorse was located?
Don Boyd20-Jan-2011 12:23
Richard, thank you for your comments and for posting your great memories of Dadeland. Yes, please do tell us about the Serpentarium's giant cobra. Thanks!

And thank you to everyone else for their comments and their memories. I figure that a bunch of us collectively ought to be able to remember just about everything.

Don
Richard 19-Jan-2011 21:19
Thank you Mr. Boyd for the great memories. I have told my children about the seahorse many times. Now they know it is true.

As a child, I remember going to Dadeland when it was open air. We moved from Perrine to our new house on SW 80th Street just north of the mall in 1969.

From 1972 to about 1976, I worked at the Food Fair which then eventually became Pantry Pride and was located where the food court is now. Fished off the walkway bridge that connected the mall to the apartments to the north many times with my sister. That would be the concrete one to the west not the wooden one to the east.

I then worked at The Barefoot Mailman from about 1978 to 1980. I remember Mr. Bliss, Mr. Pal and Mr. Biondi. I sold a lot of fiber optic lamps, Halloween masks and Florida souvenirs. The best memory was working the back counter by the "adult" section and walking up to people and asking their age. A lot of red faces. I even sold a couple of "items" to girls I had gone to high school with (South Miami High class of 1976).

Late 1979 or 1980, I worked for a very short time at the Deli near "The King of the Mall"...the Deli has very dirty behind the scenes and I had to exit quickly. What many people may not have known was that along with Burger King having that store as an experimental store, they also had an actual test kitchen in the Dadeland Towers office complex a couple of blocks to the south. My mother had an office in the Towers and I remember everyone being invited to test the new chicken sandwiches.

Thanks so much. (P.S. - I am going to post a comment on the Serpenterium (sp?) page about what truly happened to the cobra that overlooked US 1 before the attraction was demolished.
Rick 10-Jan-2011 17:41
Ferris Groves is a place I used to work at in 1970-71. Mrs. Marino, the owner was a wonderful person.
Barbara 18-May-2010 23:31
What a great site! Thanks for all the reminders...I went to Safety Town as a very young child. My mom saved a cutting from the newspaper showing me getting my eyes checked. I have to go find it. We LOVED Safety Town and were heartbroken when Jordan Marsh was built there.
Burdines had a Ladies Lounge area, I remember sitting there with my mother. It was an elegant room with murals of palm trees on the walls.
I worked at Barefoot Mailman for a few months in high school. It was HORRIBLE. If I knew then what I know now, I could have handled the constant teasing and sexual comments by the 3 managers. Sorry Mr Pal...but you were a bit creepy acting to a 16 year old girl waaay back then. LOL.
I remember the Food Fair, the Kresge's and yes I shoplifted from a kiosk called Ole. I stole a pair of silver earrings that I have to this day. I got my first platforms from Bakers. And I always had to get a lemon ice from Ferris Groves. When I was really young my school shoes came from Stuart Cantor (sp?) where I got my Stride Rites. We ate at the cafeteria and the Westward Ho.

I could go on and on. Anyway, thanks for the stroll down memory lane and the great picture of the seahorse. God I feel old now.
Mori 30-Dec-2009 00:38
So many memories. We moved near Dadeland around 1964, when I was 5, and I pretty much grew up and came of age there. My first "Chinese food" was our family's weekly take-out from Won Ton. My first Italian ices (or as they called them, Venetian ices) at Ferris Groves. I always loved their ceiling fans -- they were the first paddle-style ceiling fans I ever saw -- black with 3 blades. Riding the little helicopter outside Food Fair was a big deal when I was younger, as much as buying black lights and black light posters and playing with those little birds that bobbed their head into a glass at Barefoot Mailman a few years later. Next door, I relished the crazy platforms and thigh-high boots at the Wild Pair. Of course, there was every teenage girl's wardrobe trifecta of Lerner's (clothes), Baker's (shoes) and Kresge (jewelry, paid or not). And on the other end (of the mall and the financial spectrum) was Exit IV, the first high-end boutique I can remember. Dadeland was a place that heralded so many new trends, in both fashion and food. I remember the revelation of thick-crust pizza when Cozzolli's moved in (altho I always preferred Snack Shack's thin-crust). Not surprisingly, the Burger King at Dadeland (King of the Mall) had to be the first one dubbed BK Lounge, because it truly had that dark lounge-like feel with booths and stained glass. And the fountain, yes. I don't remember it unenclosed, but it was such a staple of my childhood in the enclosed mall. I remember actually going in it (and getting kicked out of it) in those wild teen years. Speaking of which, anyone else remember skipping school and spending the day on the couch under the bridge that went over the canal behind Dadeland?
fred 27-Aug-2009 19:31
The tabacco store was called Harials (sp?), it moved across Dixie Hwy when the management at Dadeland wanted to clean up the image of the mall.
debra5408-Jun-2009 16:47
I remember that deli. It was wonderful. Too bad they aren't around anymore. I also remember the "little kids town with cars" that is mentioned in an earlier post. It was called Safety Town. It's purpose was to teach kids about traffic safety . . . look both ways before you cross the street, etc.
Vicky 21-Apr-2009 19:34
Does anyone remember a deli in the part of the mall where Burger King was? They had great hot dogs. Also there was a tobacco shop in that part of the mall.
Leighton 06-Mar-2009 05:44
Between 67 - 73, our family went to Dadeland EVERY Friday after school. And Mondays, after school - it was always Key Biscayne. Great traditions, glad we had them.
Frank 01-Feb-2009 19:14
Oh - for people who lived in the apartments across the canal from Dadeland in the 1970's the Dade County Library Bookmobile would visit the rear parking lot of Dadeland (next to the canal) every Thursday evening from 6:30-8:30 p.m. and it was like a little book of the month club meeting - never any fear of security issues, just a small-town library on wheels, since the closest one was in South Miami (there were no other librarys west of there at that time).

I remember Coffee, etc. next to JM in the late '70s - what a great smell of ground coffee that created!

I'd walk through the mall on some quiet summer evening, and, it must have been the most mello mall (MMM) anywhere in the USA at that time - really, it was a reflection of most of Miami in the mid-late '70s - a great place to live year-round...

I'm sitll down here (in Broward County) today, but, it just isn't the same - oh, well - at least we all can say we lived here "back when" and be thankful for that!

Frank
Leighton 02-Jan-2009 17:12
Ah, the two-story Burger King...many memories of the "experimental" food, and also getting "dumped" there. Burdines was a cool place - so sorry to see it swallowed up by Macy's (yuck). I recently had to throw away my Sharp TV, purchased at Burdines in 1983 (The College Years). The Burdines of the late 60s/early 70s was definitely more interesting. I'll beat the dead horse, and ask, again, if anybody has any shots of Forum Cafeteria. That was some kind of Mecca for me - our family went there EVERY Friday, after school. We always ate by the windows facing the inner mall, and the bone-breaking stone creatures. I don't remember the grocery store being Food Fair, but we never went there, anyway. Only Publix for my family.
jill 07-Dec-2008 12:49
I was just at Dadeland Mall two weeks ago, while visiting family in Miami. As my fiance and I walked through the mall with my dad, I noticed that thesea horse was missing! My brother later told me that it was gone. Having grown up in Miami in the 70's and 80's - I have very fond memories of the sea horse (along with the turtle and llama) and we also loved throwing coins into the fountain. My mom and I used to go shopping together and always ate at Le Crepe. When I was very young, I remember going to Dadeland with my parents and my dad would buy me either a cherry italian ice or this delicious cocnut milk from some type of little stand - perhaps it was Ferris Groves? I had to laugh when someone else mentioned "Just Pants"! Wow! Talk about a trip down memory lane! In the mid 1980's, in high school, we used to hang out at Dadeland on the weekends; congregating at the two story Burger King. Does anyone remember the "StageLight Cosmetics" counter in Burdines?
steve 12-Nov-2008 19:40
DADELAND MALL!!! Criminey, that brings back a flood of memories. Dadeland was my world for many years. Lived down by South Miami High school and used to ride my Schwinn Collegiate sport down 72nd Avenue -- three, four times a week and hang out there. I remember these apartments right before you got to the mall, called "The Ledges"... the whole thought of living in an apartment seemed so strange. Later, I worked in Burdines, one of those twerpy kids who floated from department to department. I thought I was hot stuff with that job, in my navy sportcoat and 9 inch wide tie. My favorite department was the Garden Shop, part of the store that opened out into the parking lot facing N. Kendall. It was removed enough from the store that you could pretty much do your own thing out there. Plants, tools... You could buy paint there! Amazing.

Burdines also had an Auto center; supposedly the worst place in town to get your car fixed. The had a book department that was the equivalent of an in-line retail store, and you could by large appliances there. Really, a true department store

Not so many chains in the mall as there are now. Like every kid, I snuck into Barefoot Mailman to look at the snarky stuff they had. There was the YumYum shop, some frilly little place where you could get ice cream. It was over by the original entrance, the same aisle as the barber shop and the Stride Rite shoe store. Remember Food Fair? And National Shirt Shops -- I still have a sweater that I wear from that place. Kinney Shoes? Thom McAnn? Arrango? Hickory Farms? Snooty Mayor's Jewelers? Oh, and Lillie Rubin...I swear I never saw anyone in that place in the 16 years I went to that mall.

There was a burger king, just outside of Burdines on the way to Penneys. I knew a girl who worked there; she told me it was the "experimental" Burger King, where they tried new stuff before the put them in other outlets. Had some odd meals there.

And fine dining on the outside... Westward Ho! Ranch House!

I remember working on my Christmas Vacation... It was like a huge party; the mall so crowded that you could barely make it through.

Such a great time. Malls are a dead deal now, but what a ride they had. For Southwest Miami, Dadeland was the center of the universe.
Frank 11-Nov-2008 17:46
We lived in the apartment complex across the Snapper Creek Canal in 1970, and, one of the shops near the Sea Horse center square was Ferris Groves (oranges), perhaps a reminder that Dadeland was built on a former orange grove...

At the time of Dadeland's 20th anniversary, the husband and wife that owned the orange grove returned (from Central Florida, if I'm not mistaken) to visit the Mall and relive their past in Kendall - as they told The Miami Herald, "It has grown"...

Today, it's almost unrecognizeable, but, in 1970, in many ways it did still have the original "look" to it - there was a stand of pine trees across from the mall at that time, a reminder of how the area once looked in it's natural state...

Thanks for the photo!

Frank
Plantation FL
Don Boyd29-Aug-2008 14:11
Thanks for responding, Gary. For some weird reason my memory had your Dadeland store in the wrong half of the mall on the east side of Burdines but I had the storefront direction right. And now that you mention it I now remember the Westland Mall store and the Florida Mall in Orlando store.

I was into practical joke stuff and you had a great variety of that stuff to buy plus some great Halloween masks. They were neat stores to shop in and it's a shame that malls got so greedy with their rents over the years. Thanks again for providing information on your stores. At least most people my age remember the name of your stores, which is more than we can say about numerous other stores that are no longer operating.

Don
Gary Bliss 29-Aug-2008 12:18
Don
We were facing south and about half way down to where the old Jordan Marsh store use to be. If you came in the original front entrance to the mall and turned left we were on the right hand side. I don't know if the Arango store is still there but we were next to that and I believe the original store there was called the Iron Monger on the left and a National Shirt store on the right side. We closed the store in 1984 when they wanted to move us to a store half the size and raise the rent to $17,000. a month plus overages. We had in Westland Mall Hialeah, Miami International Mall, Pompano Fashion Center, West Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, Florida Mall Orlando, Orlando Fashion Center, and Tyron Square in St. Pete. We closed the stores a year or so after Andrew and over 30 years in business.
Don Boyd29-Aug-2008 05:04
Thanks for writing, Gary. It's funny how everyone who was in their teens back in the 60's remembers your store. I remember seeing one at another mall but can't remember what mall it was. Can you reply back with the names of the other malls where your stores were? And what year did you close your store at Dadeland?

Also, we were having a little debate as to your Dadeland store's exact location in the mall. I remember it east of Burdines, about midway to the east end of the mall with the storefront facing south. Can you elaborate on where it was and if you moved in the mall during your tenure there and if so where the store was?

Don
Gary Bliss 29-Aug-2008 02:48
What a treat to see some of the old pictures. We were the owners along with our partner Robert & Patty Fleming of the Barefoot Mailman Store in Dadeland and 6 other malls through out Florida. What a change the mall has under gone since it's open in 1963
Matthew 22-Jul-2008 02:28
I hadn't realized the horse was present prior to the mall becoming enclosed. I definitely remember it post-enclosure, and playing as a kid on the llama and turtle. Thank goodness for those distractions. Shopping was boring for a 5 year old!
Ray17-Jul-2008 23:05
I think you got the Barefoot Mailman reference Kenny. And I remember a major Boy Scout hike that did some of the same route. It was a great store to hang out in while our parents did real shopping elsewhere.
Kenny Blanton 20-Jun-2008 00:34
If I rememebr right, the "barefoot mailman" was actually a US posteal carrier who made a trip from Juno Beach, the county seat at the time, to deliver mail all the way to Miami, I wanna say once a month ?

I don't quite remember the details, but it was something like that.
Leighton 01-Jun-2008 06:17
Yep, Dadeland was the center of the universe in the late 60s, early 70s. You'll have to explain the BM name - I was too young to get it. I returned to Miami in the 80s - UM. Bought a Sharp TV in Burdines - 1983 - it just died two years ago. Sad that Macy's devoured about every local chain left in the US.
Ray29-May-2008 02:57
I remember the Barefoot Mailman West of Burdines. And yes, facing South. Is there a chance that it briefly moved toward JC Penny's near the end of its time at Dadeland? I bet the mall management hated that store and the deviants (like us) it attracted. Does anyone know what that name comes from? Hint, think Florida history, not drugs.

I have memories of looking towards the east from Burdines as the 'new' section was being added. Also remember going up the ramp to the new parking garage for the first time. Seemed so high. My grandmother used to frequent a haberdashery store. For some reason I think they had a card for buying 8 hats and getting one free. The oddest things that remain in the memory. Having a grocery store in a major mall is laughable today but made sense then. I remember lots of recessed bright lighting, lots of mirrors and boring background music in that Food Fair.

Anyone remember Burdines having a sort of outdoor sale in the area that's now the parking garage?

Under bad history, there was a major shooting there. In the liquor store? I think many FBI agents lost their lives in that shootout.

This was THE mall for so many of us. Cutler Ridge was closer, but Dadeland was the best mall and worth the extra drive. As far as I remember, Dadeland never had a Richards, Jackson Byrons, Jeffersons, or any of the other big anchor stores we know from South Florida.

The tower at the SW corner of the property is one of the things that still looks original.

Great memories. Thanks.
Leighton 24-Apr-2008 03:43
Guess they didn't read my comments below.
Guest 14-Apr-2008 21:16
Dadeland Mall has been a very important part of my life growing up on 92nd avenue between Sunset Drive and Miller Road. Being born in 1963, I've seen all the changes from being open air to today. My fondest memories are of the Sea Horse fountain which was a crime when it was removed. I herd they completely destroyed it when they took it down and it was design by Morris Lapidus (designer of the Fountainbleau Hotel) . Also, The Snack Shack, Wicks and Sticks, Mr John, Le Crepe, Forum Cafeteria, The Wild Pair( when it first opened), Just Pants, Raffels and many more...
Leighton01-Apr-2008 01:48
No, I haven't been back to Miami in twenty years, so I don't know where they are in the zoo, or if they're still there. I imagine they are used for decor, and no longer for playing, as they were pretty dangerous at Dadeland.
NLNB 27-Mar-2008 07:27
Leighton - thanks for letting us know what happened to the animals. Are they still at the zoo and do you know where exactly?
Leighton20-Mar-2008 14:10
The cement animals ended up in the Metro Zoo, when it was first built.
Steve 19-Mar-2008 02:05
Thanks NLNB for remembering those animals around the mall. I forgot about those. Who remembers Ferris Groves which was on the NE side of the fountain? They served tropical drinks and shipped fruit and coconut patties to your relatives up north.
NLNB 10-Mar-2008 17:45
When I saw the picture of this fountain, it brought back such wonderful memories. We used to go to Dadeland Mall all the time and we would throw pennies in that fountain. I really hope the fountain wasn't destroyed. We would buy our shoes at the Stride Rite store (which just closed after so many years) and run up and down the mall testing the traction of our new shoes. We would also play on top of the large stone/cement animals in the mall. I wonder what happened to those? Also, when my Grandmother would visit, we would go to eat at the Forum. It was her favorite place and I remember we would always dress up to go there. (I loved the blueberry pie there and of course, the balloons tied to a stick.) I also remember grocery shopping at Food Fair. Anyway, Dadeland certainly isn't what it used to be. If I could only back to those days...
K. Blanton 22-Feb-2008 20:08
Does anyone remember the little deal in the west parking neard the Palmetto Expressway lot that had those little cars that you drove around? It was like a little town set up there & kids would go & drive the little cars around.
Leighton21-Feb-2008 06:00
Ah, the Forum balloons....obtained from that container near the round, check-out register counter. The balloons were tied to long plastic sticks, with "candy cane - type" stripes, in a variety of colors. Wasn't there a fountain in that area, as well?
Cindy Long (maiden name Pierce) 20-Feb-2008 04:15
I have a picture of myself at about 7 or 8 yrs old holding a balloon from Forum Cafeteria on an Easter Sunday in front of the Sea Horse. Whenever I went to church with my grandparents, we had lunch at the Forum. Years later as a teen, I worked at Hickory Farms in the 'new' section of the mall (around 1973). I loved that mall! But to quote and old rock and roll song 'it's all over now'.
Don Boyd19-Feb-2008 17:46
Let's see what others remember as to whether they recall it east of, or west of, Burdines. At least we agree on it facing south, haha. Don
Leighton 19-Feb-2008 16:59
Wait, I remember "Barefoot" WEST of Burdines, close to "The Horse," facing South - halfway between B and JM.
Don Boyd19-Feb-2008 06:14
I've read a similar news story about the Sea Horse somewhere and it's a darn shame.

My buddies and I loved the risque stuff at the Barefoot Mailman - that was worth a trip down the Palmetto from Hialeah. As I recall they were in the wing east of Burdines with the storefront facing south.

Don
Leighton 19-Feb-2008 04:21
I researched the horse around 1997 - talked the the mall office, and they tracked somebody down who told the following story...after the 83 renovation, the horse was dismantled, separated into two pieces, and stored across the canal, in a warehouse. At some point in the late 80s, thieves or stupid idiots broke in, and the upper portion of the horse disappeared. It is thought that it was thrown in the canal. Nobody bothered to check, and the person assumed that the remained of the horse was destroyed. I hope it's not true. I tried to get the Herald, or CG paper interested, but no reporter gave a damn. I guess they don't realize JUST how important this figure was, to kids of the 60s/70s. Every Friday, after eating at Forum, we would throw pennies in the fountain (and look at the nasty stuff at The Barefoot Mailman").