She'd probably go under a bit faster, but the Titanic model made of recyclables that Eldersburg librarian Chris Badeker has been constructing for the last three weeks could be every bit as detailed as the original — just replace the smoke stacks with Starbucks cups, and the hand rails with soda tabs.
The finished model, made entirely of reusable material collected by various Carroll County offices, will be on display throughout the day at Eldersburg Library on Saturday, which marks the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster that ended in the sinking of the luxury ocean liner.
The display will accompany programming co-sponsored by McDaniel College and Random House.
At least 20 toilet paper rolls and bits of styrofoam have been stuffed into the frame to provide the ship with structure, Badeker said. The '07 McDaniel College graduate in arts and communication said that after that, he started winging it in terms of which materials should go where.
"I'm sitting there drinking out of a coffee cup, looking at Titanic pictures, and I'm like, 'Hey, this cup kind of looks like a smoke stack," he said.
Java jackets became deck material, coffee stirrers helped create lines, and cut-up sugar packets came to represent hundreds of little windows throughout the vessel. "A lot of duct tape" holds it all together, Badeker said. The replica is 72 inches long, 14 inches tall and 12 inches wide.
Most people tend to have varying degrees of fascination for the fate and history surrounding the Titanic, branch manager Nadine Rosendale said.
She's right, if blockbuster films like the 1997 James-Cameron directed Titanic are any indication. The entertainment industry has made a push to capitalize on the 100-year anniversary, releasing 2D, Real D 3D and IMAX 3D versions last week. (Local showtimes can be found here.)
"It's an interesting topic that we can do a lot with," Rosendale said. "It's weird because it's a tragic event … but we do want to celebrate it somehow."
Badeker said he has a keen interest in painting and photography, but never thought he'd be constructing something like the model of a ship that could serve as an homage to his caffeine habit.
"I kind of feel like saying, 'Thanks Starbucks! Thanks Panera!" Badeker said. "Most of it is coffee stuff."
The library will be holding the following events to commemorate the Titanic’s 100th anniversary. No advanced registration is required. Seating is first come, first served.
- Now through Saturday: People can watch Chris Badeker as he builds a Titanic model out of recycled materials in the public area of the library. The model will be finished by Saturday, April 14.
- Saturday, 11a.m.: David Coe will present The RMS Titanic: Myth and Reality, in which he will dispel the myths and get to the truth behind the tragic event that happened 100 years ago.
- Saturday, 1 p.m.: Meet Kate Alcott, author of The Dressmaker. At this free event, Kate Alcott will discuss her historical novel about a spirited young woman who survives the sinking of the Titanic only to find herself embroiled in the media frenzy left in the wake of the tragedy. Refreshments will be served after, provided in part by Just Desserts.
The Eldersburg Library is located at 6400 West Hemlock Drive.