The Iris Patch
Welcome to Our Web page.
Who are we?
My name is Freda Kraus and I breed and exhibit show quality Mini Rex Rabbits. I am a member of The American Rabbit Breeders Association (ARBA), a Life member of the National Mini Rex Rabbit Club (NMRRC) and a licensed ARBA Rabbit Judge. The Iris Patch Mini Rex are well known with animals all over the United States and as far away as Great Britain. In 1997 I became a Rabbit judge and as a result I have had the opportunity to judge in a great number of states including Alaska and the beautiful island country of Bermuda.
Where are we?
We are located in the Foothills of the Catoctin mountains of Maryland near the home of Francis Scott Key. In an area steeped in American history it is only a short drive to Gettysburg, Antietam, and Manassas National Parks. Drive a little longer and we are in Annapolis, Baltimore or Washington DC, cities of history, museums and the Nation's Capitol.
Annapolis: State Capitol home of the United States Naval Academy on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay .
Baltimore: The birth place of Babe Ruth, final resting place of Edgar Allen Poe and Fort McHenry where Key penned " The Star Spangled Banner".
Washington DC: Home to the Smithsonian Institute and National Museums of Art, History, Natural History, Air & Space and Zoo. Where else can you find live Pandas, Kitty Hawk, The Spirit of Saint Louis, Hawk Eye Pierce's shirt , Archie Bunkers Chair, The Hope Diamond, a Rembrandt , an Alexander Calder Mobile, a Van Gogh and "The Star Spangled Banner"?
What is a Mini Rex Rabbit?
The Mini Rex Rabbit is a small active rabbit weighing about four (4) pounds with a velvet plush coat of fur. Their endearing character and lush fur have made them one of the most popular breeds raised in the United States. The breed was introduced to the rabbit scene in 1986 by Mona Berryhill at the American Rabbit Breeders Association Convention held in Columbus, Ohio. A smaller version of the popular Rex rabbit, it became an instant hit with rabbit breeders and pet owners across the United States and Canada. Today in most areas of the country, you will find it one of the largest show entries. A great number of dedicated breeders have brought the Mini Rex to the highest level of competition within the American Rabbit Breeders Show system. During the past show year Mini Rex Rabbits were awarded Best in Show at one out of every ten shows, a record that is very hard to equal.
What is a Mini Satin Rabbit?
The newest addition to ARBA recognized in 2005 it is the result of many years of development from the Satin breed. Like the Mini Rex it is a small compact rabbit about 4 pounds with a silky coat of satin. Babies almost glitter as their first coat starts coming in. A good Satin Coat is very soft with very glossy sheen. The white variety appears almost ivory in color due to the thin transparent hair shaft. More varietieswill be added as the process of presentations continues. Already a strong competitor the Mini Satin may well give the Mini Rex a real run for the BIS award.
Enjoy your visit to our site as there are many pages to explore. Don't miss the links page, there are some great and different links to be found there. Keep scrolling for a bit of Maryland's history that is dear to all Americans
Click on the Logos below to visit these web sites and join.
Wye Oak ~1550-2002
photo by Maryalnd's premier Photographer A. Aubrey Bodine (1906-1970)
Maryland's Great White Oak at Wye Mills c 1958
As our country recovers from the events of September 11, 2001 these words penned in 1814 by a young Maryland native carry as much meaning now as they did that fateful night in Baltimore.
Oh, say can you see, by the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, through the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, now conceals, now discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines on the stream:
'Tis the star-spangled banner! O long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wiped out their foul footstep's pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven-rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
Francis Scott Key (1779 - 1843)
"Then, in that hour of deliverance, my heart spoke. Does not such a country, and such defenders of their country, deserve a song?..."