MORDEN, MB –A new sculpture stands at the far West side of Morden, book-ending the community along with the sculpture of “Bruce”, the Guinness-World-Record-Holding Mosasaur, which sits on the far East end of the city.
This massive, life-sized sculpture of an Achelon Turtle was built over three months by resident dino-artist, Adolfo Cuetara, who donated 100 per cent of his time to constructing the beast.
A number of other donors contributed materials, time, money, and labour: Meridian Manufacturing, Morden Co-op grocery store, the City of Morden, and Elite Crushing who provided the workshop, loading, transportation, and usage of the crane to settle the sculpture into place.
“The CFDC wants to see the museum expand into the public space”, said Executive Director of the CFDC, Peter Cantelon. “By adding these high-quality, accurate, life-sized renditions of marine reptiles that used to live here, we allow people to connect with the deepest part of our history. It’s educational, it’s fun. It attracts tourists and tourism revenue to the city. And it instills a sense of pride in our unique heritage.”
The turtle sculpture is of the largest turtle to ever live. It swam in the seas that covered Manitoba and Morden in the ancient past. Archelon turtle fossils, excavated near Morden, currently sit in the CFDC collection.
A naming contest will begin immediately to give the sculpture its official name. To participate, email your name suggestion to email@example.com. On October 1st, the top five names will be posted on discoverfossils.com and mordenmb.com. People will then be able to vote on which of the top five names they like best.
Dignitaries present at the unveiling on Friday will be the Honourable Candice Bergen PC, MP of Portage-Lisgar, Conservative Party House Leader; the Honourable Cameron Friesen, Minister of Finance, MLA for Morden—Winkler; the Honourable Cathy Cox, Minister of Sport, Culture, and Heritage, MLA for River East; Mayor of the City of Morden, Ken Wiebe; and newly appointed American Consul based in Winnipeg, Anthony Paglia.
PHOTO: (Left to Right) Doug Eidse, Meridian Manufacturing; Evan Toews, Winkler-Morden Co-op; Hon. Candice Bergen, MP for Portage-Lisgar; Hon. Cameron Friesen, Minister of Finance and MLA for Morden-Winkler; Morden Mayor Ken Wiebe; Hon. Cathy Cox, Minister of Sport, Culture and Heritage; Chris Leach, CFDC vice-president; Peter Cantelon, CFDC executive director; Derek Wiebe, CFDC director; Michelle Charriere, CFDC director; Art Petkau, CFDC director.