Frogs net nearly $150,000



The purple-jerseyed "Bret Harte Bullfrog" stole the show Saturday night in a competitive, fast-paced auction that ended with one bidder paying $50,000.

The nonprofit Bret Harte-Angels, Inc. made the high bid because it received an anonymous donation of $50,000, said President Harry Williams. The money will go toward a new multi-purpose sports and recreational complex at Bret Harte High School, he said, and the frog will be donated to the school.

The Frog Gala Auction, which drew more than 500 people, was an evening filled with all the charm, color and mixed drinks one would expect to find on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. Organizers from the Calaveras Chamber of Commerce spent six days setting up the Mardi Gras-themed decorations in Mark Twain Hall at Frogtown in Angels Camp.

They even created the "Rue de Grenouilles" the Street of the Frogs, along which 26 brightly bedecked Painted Frogs of Calaveras County rested on their haunches.

The frogs were auctioned off for a total of $149,100, but to only 20 bidders some bought more than one.

Dean Shoemaker of Morgan Hill spent $18,800 on four frogs, including the "49er Miner" frog that spent some time at Don Boos Design and the "Police Frog" sponsored by Jackson Rancheria.

Shoemaker owns Carmel Chemicals in Morgan Hill and said three of the frogs will be placed around his office and "Police Frog" will be stationed outside the building. He said he first noticed "Police Frog" when he visited Ironstone Vineyard for the Concours d'Elegance last month.

John and Roxie Hertzig of Jackson bought three of the 4-foot fiberglass frogs Saturday night. The couple own John Hertzig Construction and Wendell's Lounge in Mokelumne Hill. They said they haven't decided what to do with all the frogs, although one "Lumberjack Frog" will go to White Pines' Sierra Nevada Logging Museum.

Roxie Hertzig said her father was in the lumber business and her cousin, Pat Bradley, started the museum, so the frog has sentimental value for her family.

The couple spent $14,300 altogether.

The Union Democrat
This image is copyrighted.

Reach all of Sonora, Calaveras County, Tuolumne, Angels Camp, Twain Harte, & Jamestown with your items to sell.

Ads appear Online and in Print

View Classifieds Place an Ad

Connect with The Union Democrat

Union Democrat Newsstand

Monday October 24, 2016

Read digital interactive editions of our publications

Read Today's Edition Take A Tour

More Publications by The Union Democrat

View All Publications
Paying the price


Chris Lusardi, of Sonora, is one of thousands of Tuolumne County residents ... more

Columbia Elementary board ousts superintendent


Five days after receiving a 2 percent raise, Columbia Union School District ... more

New oak disease spreads from coast to foothills


A deadly fungus killing oak trees along the coasts of central and ... more

Mudslide knocks out a portion of TUD’s ditch system


The Columbia ditch will be closed until Saturday, following a mudslide that ... more

Battle for cannabis regulation in Calaveras wages on


Strong opinions and loud accusations have made the battle over cannabis cultivation ... more