For more than 50 years, Dayton’s own George A. Mikalauskas has created Lithuanian inspired religious works in wood. Examples of his craftsmanship were displayed during the Lithuanian folk art exhibit, “The Passion in Wood and Straw, April 1-May 12, 2006,”in the Marian Library Gallery on the campus of the University of Dayton.The pieces (crafted from oak, walnut, butternut, cherry, pine, coffee wood, and linden wood) range in size from 3 inches to huge, ornate wayside shrines capping 16 feet tall. Born in Dayton to Lithuanian parents, Mr. Mikalauskas continues the arts of his ancestors, incorporating traditional Lithuanian designs and symbols into his handcrafted and carved crosses. Eight large wayside shrines have been erected across Dayton’s landscape, as well as in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Kearney, New Jersey; New York, New York; and even Lithuania’s own Hill of Crosses. His crosses represent themes of hope, love, peace, and forgiveness. Two of them recall his visits to the cities of Neringa and Palenga on the Baltic Sea of Lithuania.