Marble sculpture adorns Alberta's first accessible outdoor rink in Calgary
A marble sculpture that took more than two years and 1,600 hours of work to complete is now adorning Alberta's first accessible outdoor rink.
The sculpture is called Creating a Champion and features a parent and child wearing skates and hockey equipment in front of a net.
And it's big.
Sculptor Bill Harvey started with a block of Vancouver Island marble weighing close to 10,000 kilograms and the process of chiseling it into a finished product saw more than half of the stone removed.
"It was a major accomplishment," said Harvey. "I was in a big shop up in Red Deer and after doing all of the cleanup, it was sitting there in the shop all on its own and I turned around to look at it and it was like, 'Wow, I did that,' … and it's a pretty big deal."
Harvey says he got the idea to work with stone after a 1973 visit to Rome.
"Michelangelo was just so unbelievable to do what he did with hammers and chisels," he said. "So what I did is, I said to myself, 'Well, what could I do with modern power tools?'"
He began working on the sculpture in 2019 and it took upward of 1,600 hours to complete. The piece was inspired by a Canadian hockey legend.
"I thought about Wayne Gretzky as a champion hockey player and the idea came to me that well, this is not Wayne Gretzky but it's the creation of a champion," he said. "And I thought to myself, I wonder how Walter Gretzky (thought) of Wayne Gretzky."
Andy Thiessen lives in Parkdale and is the volunteer operations manager at the rink, a fancy term for what he calls "a winter gardener" who watches water freeze. Thiessen saw Harvey's sculpture and thought it would be a good addition at the facility.
"I acquired the piece and then wanted to donate it to this project that I'm so passionately involved with," said Thiessen. "Now it sits here and it's got a little sign that says it was donated by my family and you know what, 30 years from now my kids can come back and see something that dad and grandpa was a part of and yeah, it's pretty cool."
The piece has been appraised at between $15,000 and $30,000.
Josephine Cameron is 11 years old and can't wait to skate on the new ice surface with her friends. She's impressed by the new sculpture and its title, Creating a Champion.
"I love it, it's awesome, it's really inspiring because it's like a boy and his dad learning how to skate," she said.
Cameron learned from Harvey how meticulous the work was on the piece to make it look realistic, like carving the hockey net.
"On each square took like 10 to 15 minutes and there's like hundreds of them," said Cameron.
John Butterwick is another volunteer and the accessible rink project manager. He says five years ago, Parkdale's old outdoor rink had to be closed because it was in bad shape.
"One of our first community engagement meetings, there was a question asked, will the rink be accessible and we thought, 'Wow, why aren't rinks accessible, who knows who's the best person to talk to about learning about this?'" he said.
The community then began consulting with the Sledge Hockey Association and players to come up with a design.
"What's amazing about this facility is that it is completely accessible, it is built for a sledge hockey standards and requirements," said Parkdale Community Association president Amanda Affonso.
"So we've got the clear boards, the wider gates, we've got the warming area so you can transition from your wheelchair to your sled and just having the accessible bathrooms close by and just the ease of access transitioning from outside of the rink to the refit is completely flush."
The grand opening of the new $1,700,000 facility takes place Jan. 29.
Learn more about Parkdale Community Association online.
Calgary Top Stories
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Students trapped inside a classroom with a gunman repeatedly called 911 during this week's attack on a Texas elementary school, including one who pleaded, 'Please send the police now,' as nearly 20 officers waited in the hallway for more than 45 minutes, authorities said Friday.
As Johnny Depp's high-profile libel lawsuit against ex-wife Amber Heard wound down, Heard took her final opportunity on the stand to comment on the hate and backlash she’s endured online during the trial.
A new report says Ottawa, Vancouver and Toronto rank among the top 20 cities around the world when it comes to work-life balance.
Federal Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino will table new firearms legislation on Monday, according to his colleague Justice Minister David Lametti. In an interview with CTV's Question Period that will air on Sunday, Lametti pointed to the advance notice given to the House of Commons, and confirmed the plan is to see the new bill unveiled shortly after MPs return to the Commons on May 30.
An 11-year-old survivor of the Robb Elementary School massacre in Uvalde, Texas, feared the gunman would come back for her so she smeared herself in her friend's blood and played dead.
For 70 years, Andre Hissink has held a grudge against the Dutch government, but this week, the 102-year-old Second World War veteran’s persistence paid off – the Dutch king granted his wish for a rare dual citizenship.
Canada has tapped into its own strategic stockpile of emergency medical supplies -- stored for a national emergency -- to help Ukraine. It has donated over 375,000 items of medical equipment and medicines from Canada's strategic stockpile since the invasion by Russia began.
Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, more commonly known as 'broken heart syndrome' or stress-induced cardiomyopathy, is an actual medical condition triggered by severe emotional or physical stress and is different from a heart attack.
After a six-week trial in which Johnny Depp and Amber Heard tore into each other over the nasty details of their short marriage, both sides told a jury the exact same thing Friday -- they want their lives back.
A 19-year-old man is in police custody after a shooting near Rogers Place after an Edmonton Oilers viewing party ended Thursday evening.
Ground was officially broken on Edmonton's Valley Line West LRT route on Friday.
The city is looking at ways to get outdoor pools open earlier after feedback from Edmontonians that they’re opening too late in the season.
Vancouver police are investigating a double stabbing they say happened at an apartment building in Kitsilano Friday morning.
British Columbians excited to take their dog on a local hike this summer are being reminded to prepare for the pets, just as they plan for themselves.
Mounties say a suspicious device found on the side of a road in West Kelowna Thursday was, in fact, an explosive.
A lawyer for families of victims killed in the Nova Scotia mass shooting says an 18-hour delay in finding five bodies of those murdered is a sign of "deficient" policing.
A Cape Breton father is warning the public of the dangers in the area he lives after his teenager son fell nearly 40 feet over a cliff in Glace Bay.
Two Muslim sisters in St. John's, N.L., are speaking out after a man approached them where they work, screamed at them and then smacked the 15-year-old sister across the head, nearly knocking her over.
B.C. speedboat driver arrested with 650kg of meth 'feared for his family's safety,' he told U.S. investigators
New details are emerging after a 51-year-old Alberta man was arrested aboard a speedboat that U.S. authorities say was carrying 650 kilograms of methamphetamine between Washington state and British Columbia.
DEVELOPING | Mill Bay mall fire closes Trans-Canada Highway
At least one building was destroyed Friday afternoon as firefighters rushed to a large fire at the vacant Pioneer Square Mall in Mill Bay, B.C.
West Shore RCMP are on the lookout for a missing dog that was inside of a truck when it was stolen from the Langford area on Thursday morning.
Police have released a video showing the arrest of two suspects who allegedly stole a Mercedes – the latest in a string of armed vehicle thefts that has prompted police services in the Greater Toronto Area to create a carjacking task force.
Toronto Pearson International is warning travellers and Mississauga residents they may notice unusual activity at the airport this weekend.
New video has emerged showing the moment a tornado touched down in Uxbridge, Ont. over the weekend, ripping the roof off a local brewery.
Canada's highest court has ruled that Alexandre Bissonnette, who murdered six people at the Quebec City mosque in 2017, will be eligible for parole after 25 years.
Is it unconstitutional to make someone pay to get a legal document translated into French? One of Montreal's top lawyers thinks so, and pointed out two other things from Bill 96 that he thinks the courts would most easily find fault with.
Hydro-Quebec is still struggling to restore power to tens of thousands of homes left without electricity, six days after deadly storms hit in Quebec and Ontario.
As of Friday evening, 26,000 Hydro Ottawa customers remain without power in all neighbourhoods of the city.
The principal of a French Catholic high school in Orleans is leaving the school this week, two weeks after students said a dress code enforcement "blitz" left them feeling degraded and humiliated.
Approximately 25,000 people will take part in Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend on Saturday and Sunday.
A man, who was a referee at high school volleyball games in Guelph for more than 30 years, is facing sex assault-related charges.
The Region of Waterloo says there's a high safety risk at a Kitchener encampment and they are working with residents to prepare them for their eventual move.
The Queen Victoria statue in downtown Kitchener is once again clean after it was splashed with red paint earlier this week.
'We will have to deal with the issues': Saskatoon condo residents at odds with city over public washroom plan
Outcry over the planned location of public washrooms caused Tuesday's city council meeting to stretch late into the evening.
A pedestrian injured by a vehicle in Prince Albert has died.
Saskatchewan Roughriders rookie Nelson Lokombo is ready to return to the football field after missing the entire 2021 season with an achilles injury.
Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) has honoured two people from Sudbury for their rescue efforts during last year's rescue at Totten Mine.
A 54-year-old man is facing several charges in Sudbury, including sexual assault, following an investigation triggered by reports someone was trying to traffic a victim under the age of 16.
There’s an increased police presence around four Toronto schools this morning after a 27-year-old man walking the nearby streets with an air rifle was shot dead by police on Thursday.
Winnipeg police are telling people to find an alternate route this afternoon as they are investigating a fatal crash near the St. Boniface Industrial Park.
On May 2, Manitoba shut down Highway 75 due to rising flood waters and nearly four weeks later part of it is opening up again.
Fifty-eight-year-old Vivian Ketchum is set to receive her high school diploma at a graduation ceremony at the University of Winnipeg next month. It is a moment that is decades in the making.
Premiers from western Canada met to discuss healthcare in their first face-to-face meeting in more than two years in Regina on Friday at the 2022 Western Premiers' Conference.
A Regina family facing homelessness will not be evicted from their government-owned rental unit after it was discovered they owed more than $1,000 in back rent.
An alleged mail theft and identity fraud has resulted in more than 100 charges for a 42-year-old Edmonton man, according to the Regina Police Service (RPS).