In case you haven’t seen it in the news lately, Mac the Moose has become a celebrity over night. He has made it onto Canada’s own This Hour Has 22 Minutes, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and numerous other news programs and papers. Long before all this craziness started swirling around, I had already fallen in love with the cement giant outside my office window.
Mac is the most googled roadside attraction in all of Canada. It is estimated that he has anywhere between 125,000 to 150,000 visitors a year. If you stop to think about it, how many homes all over the world have a family picture hanging lovingly on the wall with Mac in the background. Or how many postcards with his picture on it have been sent to friends and family near and far, even the memories that have been shared around the kitchen table about long ago trips that included a stop at the giant moose.
Sure Mac isn’t as beautiful as the Silver Moose in Norway, but Mac is ours. He has sat watch over our city for 35 years. Just about every kid that grew up in Moose Jaw in the 90’s remembers, to put it gently, sharing their artistic abilities with him. So many memories include a little piece of Mac.
Mac was originally built in 1984. His sole purpose was to get travelers from Highway 1 to stop and check Moose Jaw out, with the hopes that they would spend some time in our city. To this day, he still does just that, but what I have witnessed over the last few weeks of Mac’s stardom has reinforced what I love about Moose Jaw. A 10 tone cement Moose has brought a community together. We have had offers from so many of our local businesses and residents willing to lend a hand and help put him back on top. It has been heartwarming to say the least.
To me, Mac is a beacon that sits on our cities edge, welcoming visitors from near and far. It puts a smile on my face seeing all the happy people taking photos with him and to see the sheer joy on the faces of little ones as they glare up at our giant. I have met countless people over the last 2 years that have left an impression on me and made my job that much better…all because of Mac!
All I can really say for sure is that this last 3 weeks have been a wild ride with Mac leading the charge. The community support has blown all of us away and we can’t wait to get working on the old guy to put him back on top!
See you around,