Making a Statue
In 2014, local resident and craftsman Roger Roy began exploring the idea of making it official with a statue in a public space. Roy searched out options for the cougar, considering many factors, including material. The best option, and most fitting considering Hinton's long standing ties to the forest industry, was a wood carving. And one of the best purveyors of such carvings is Pioneer Log Homes, also known as "the Timber Kings". Pioneer is well known to many Canadians, thanks to their Timber and Carver Kings Programs.
In 2015, Roy pitched his idea to council, and in 2016, it was a part of the budget. But it was not just the Town of Hinton who funded this icon for the community. The statue received magnanimous support from many local supporters, who are listed below, both in terms of financial support and gifts in kind. In total, $60,000 dollars was budgeted from the 2016 and 2017 Town of Hinton Capital budgets, with $12,000 raised in the community to support the project. Total costs are currently estimated to sit at $58,000, less contribution both in kind and in cash, resulting in a total estimated cost to the Town of Hinton of $46,000. The final statue sits larger than the original estimated costs, with a roof and engineered structural basin larger than originally imagined; it is now secure, protected, and serves to mark the cougars place in a way that cannot be missed by any passerby.