CBC Digital Archives

Drumheller's colossal dinosaur

A giant hockey stick. A big nickel. An historic covered bridge. A history-changing oil well. People pass by these attractions all the time on their travels throughout Canada. Sometimes, tourists trek for days to just to catch a glimpse. Some attractions are monumental, others merely quirky. They are all the stuff of local legend. CBC Digital Archives goes province to province to admire the big things in our big country.

A seven-storey Tyrannosaurus rex that you can climb inside may attract visitors, but it's certainly no replica of the dinosaur that roamed Drumheller, Alta. some 65 million years ago. "It's way bigger than any T. Rex ever was," says Bruce Naylot of the Royal Tyrrell Museum, which houses a world famous dinosaur collection. That's besides the point, notes Corey Campbell, the man in charge of the T. Rex building project. "It's purely for marketing purposes, and to display what a T. Rex really looks like from a far distance," he says. As this 2000 CBC-TV clip shows, the massive monument is bound to attract more attention to the self-proclaimed dinosaur capital of Canada.
• Drumheller's giant T. Rex is 25 metres (82 feet) high, 46 metres (151 feet) long, and weighs 65.7 kilograms (145,000 pounds). Conversely, a real T. Rex was only about 4.6 metres (15 feet) tall and 12.2 metres (40 feet) long.

• The statue is made of fibreglass and steel and is built in three pieces: base, body and head. Construction began November. 30, 1999 and was completed in October 2000. It was a millennium project of the Drumheller Regional Chamber of Development and Tourism. As noted in the clip, the project cost about $1 million.

• Visitors can enter the dinosaur just behind its right leg. There are 106 stairs inside that lead up to the viewing area in the mouth, which can hold up to a dozen people at a time. Fossils and bone are embedded in the walls of the enclosed staircase.

• The Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology is a world-renowned tourist attraction and centre of palaeontological research. The facility is located in the middle of the fossil rich area of the late Cretaceous Horseshoe Canyon Formation. Its collection of more than 120,000 fossils originated in such locales as Dinosaur Provincial Park and the Devil's Coulee Dinosaur Egg Historic Nest Site, both in Alberta.

• This clip cites three other notable roadside attractions in Alberta: Glendon's large perogy, the giant Pysanka Easter egg in Vegreville and a UFO landing pad in St. Paul's.

Other prominent Alberta roadside attractions include:
• Cowboy in Airdrie
• World's Largest Mallard Duck in Andrew
• World's Largest Beaver in Beaverlodge
• Angus Shaw - Fur Trader in Bonnyville
• Antique Underground Coal Train in Canmore
• World's Largest Chuckwagon in Dewberry
• World's Largest Western Boot in Edmonton
• Buffalo in Fort McMurray
Giant Perogy in Glendon
Leduc # 1 Oil Derrick near Leduc
• Mozzy the Mosquito in Rainbow Lake
Pysanka Easter Egg in Vegreville
• Starship Enterprise in Vulcan
Medium: Television
Program: Calgary Tonight
Broadcast Date: May 12, 2000
Guest(s): Corey Campbell, Bruce Dalen, Ron Lausman, Bruce Naylot
Reporter: Len Grant
Duration: 6:19

Last updated: October 1, 2012

Page consulted on December 6, 2013

All Clips from this Topic

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