Virginia Beach King Neptune Statue Welcomes Visitors to Norfolk International Airport
24-Inch Maquette of Towering 34-Foot Landmark

April 22, 2024 – Virginia Beach, VA

Visitors arriving by air to Hampton Roads will be treated to a familiar sight, a likeness of Virginia Beach’s iconic King Neptune statue. The 24-inch bronze maquette, on loan from the Virginia Beach Neptune Festival, is a scale model of the 34-foot-tall, 12.5-ton landmark which stands at 31st Street on the Virginia Beach boardwalk. Crafted before the casting of its towering counterpart, the maquette can be found in the second-floor atrium enroute to baggage claim and provides travelers with a compelling glimpse into the region’s rich maritime heritage.

Christopher “Kit” Chope, President & CEO of the Neptune Festival, expressed gratitude to the Norfolk Airport Authority for their collaborative effort in making this installation possible. “Norfolk International Airport is an important gateway to Virginia Beach. This installation serves as a welcoming ambassador for the celebration of beach life that defines the City of Virginia Beach and the Neptune Festival.”

Both the maquette and the full-sized versions of King Neptune were crafted by renowned Virginia-based sculptor Paul DiPasquale, among whose many celebrated public installations includes the bronze statue of Arthur Ashe on Richmond’s Monument Avenue. Production on the Neptune statue began in 2003 and took two years to complete. Surrounded by the creatures of his realm, including two dolphins, a loggerhead turtle and an octopus, the King Neptune statue was constructed entirely through the generosity of private donations gathered by the Neptune Festival, then officially dedicated to the City of Virginia Beach in September 2005 during the Neptune Festival Boardwalk Weekend.

From tourist snapshots to t-shirts and souvenirs, King Neptune’s majestic image continues to represent Virginia Beach to all who love her—a shining city by the sea.

About Virginia Beach Neptune Festival

Founded in 1974, Virginia Beach Neptune Festival is a private, non-profit 501-C3 organization, producing over 40 events per year, which generate tens of millions of dollars in the local economy and contribute to the charitable, educational, and recreational development of Hampton Roads. The total economic impact to the area of its flagship event alone, the Neptune Festival Boardwalk Weekend, was $26.1M in 2023. The annual weekend event is ranked among the Top 100 Events in North America and within the Top 20 Events in the Southeastern US by recognized tourism industry organizations. Neptune’s Sand Sculpting Championship is considered one of the best competitions of its kind in the world. The 2024 Boardwalk Weekend is scheduled for September 27th through September 29th this year. For more information, call the Festival office at 757.498.0215 or visit