February 21, 2014 8:37 pm
Updated: February 21, 2014 10:16 pm

Giant snow dino drawing plenty of attention in Vegreville


EDMONTON – There’s an age-old saying that goes: ‘when life hands you lemons, make lemonade.’ But what if life hands you snow? One Vegreville man believes the answer is: ‘build a giant snow dinosaur.’

“Since we have such an abundance of snow this year, I figured I might as well do something good with it,” said Christopher Cymbaluk. “His name is Snowball.”

Cymbaluk began constructing the giant snow sculpture in his backyard in December.

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“One of the main reasons why I actually built it is because I like photography, so it was almost just a prop really, so I could take pictures.”

He originally thought he might build a dragon, but once he started working, a dinosaur began to take shape.

“As I was piling the snow it kind of built up in areas and I was noticing I was getting a curve,” he said. “And I started to just almost see it. It just appeared.”

Cymbaluk spent about 20 hours making Snowball – 10 hours shovelling and piling the snow and another 10 hours carefully carving the creature with a machete.

Watch below: Time-lapse video of the dinosaur being sculpted, captured by Cymbaluk

The dino’s body also doubles as a snow fort, with room inside to comfortably seat two adults. And with shelves and LED candles, it makes a great place for entertaining.

“Buddies come over, it’s a great place to have a beer and just hang out,” Cymbaluk said with a laugh.

Practically the entire community has come over to check out Snowball. Cymbaluk says his nieces, nephews and all the neighbourhood kids are really enjoying playing on it.

“They love it. They run in and out,” he said. “It’s like a little cave for them.

“I wished I’d put a drawer so you could pull out a Tupperware container and I could offer people freezies and popsicles,” he said. “That would’ve been pretty awesome.”

Cymbaluk says he’s thinking about sculpting something new every winter, with ideas already flowing about building a giant spider next winter.

For now, Cymbaluk will enjoy Snowball, but says he likely won’t be around until spring.

“I almost do want to destroy it with a sledgehammer or something,” he said. “I wouldn’t have to watch it fade away and look all sad and melted.”

With files from Cheryl Oates, Global News.

© 2014 Shaw Media

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