Giant sculptures stir interest as tourist attraction

It’s kind of a good-news-bad-news scenario for Central Alberta sculpture park investor Morton Burke.

It’s kind of a good-news-bad-news scenario for Central Alberta sculpture park investor Morton Burke.

A Kickstarter crowd-funding campaign Burke launched in June to try to recoup his investment in 19 monumental stone carvings, so he could donate them to a community for a sculpture park, turned out to be “a wash out.”

“I got one percent of the total I was hoping for,” said Burke, who had a goal of raising $75,000 in mind by July 9. This would have allowed him to turn the first five sculptures over to an interested municipality.

He estimates each massive sculpture made during four international stone carving symposiums held from 2008 to 2012 (three were on his Bergen property and was one at Red Deer College) cost him $15,000 in out-of-pocket expenses.

This includes honouraria given to the participating international sculptors, their accommodations, tools and raw materials.

Burke needs to recoup this money so he can host more sculpture symposiums.

It’s also been his long-held dream to turn the created sculptures, now on display on his remote rural property, over to a municipality that would commit to starting a public sculpture park.

He believes the crowd-funding campaign did bring him closer to this goal.

Burke said the campaign stirred interest from several municipalities in possibly starting a sculpture park as a tourist attraction. “They were inquiring if they could purchase (the sculptures).”

While nothing has yet been solidified, Burke hopes it will soon.

“I learned a lot from the (crowd-funding) experience,” he added.

This time, Burke had no way of tracking where the donations were coming from. In future, he believes it would work better to tie a Kickstarter campaign to a particular community, so that a municipality could then drum up interest in a local sculpture park fundraiser.

Meanwhile, the sculptures can be viewed on his property this summer. (Directions can be obtained from the Sundre Tourism office, or on-line from

Just Posted

Community ‘comes together’ at opening ceremonies

The nation will focus its eyes on Red Deer for the next… Continue reading

Red Deer man loses car after being caught twice driving with suspended licence

The Ponoka Integrated Traffic Unit ticketed the man in December and on Valentine’s Day

Plenty of Family Day fun lined up in local communities

Choices abound in Red Deer thanks to 2019 Canada Winter Games

Rural crooks using drones to target properties

Drone hovering over a property in Clearwater County was reported to RCMP

Blackfalds reviewing proposal to open its own registry office

Town administration expected to report back to council in two weeks

WATCH: Canada Games Hall of Honour inductees offer advice to athletes

The inductees were honoured at the Sheraton Hotel in Red Deer Thursday

Games athletes making themselves at home at RDC

Red Deer College’s campus will be home for the athletes during the 2019 Canada Winter Games

Alix resident captures beams of light near Lacombe

Lacombe, Blackfalds, Red Deer photos have since gone viral around the world

Welcome message from the mayor

On behalf of Red Deer city council, the City of Red Deer… Continue reading

Canada avoids world’s top players in opening round of Davis Cup

MADRID — Canada has avoided a confrontation with any of the current… Continue reading

Canada’s McKeever swaps skis for tuxedo, nominated for Laureus World Sport Award

CALGARY — From a glitzy awards ceremony in Monaco to the nordic… Continue reading

Scrutiny, family woes pile pressure on pregnant Meghan

LONDON — When Meghan Markle became engaged to Prince Harry, the American… Continue reading

It’s a girl! Berlin zoo’s baby polar bear has 1st checkup

Berlin’s Tierpark zoo says its latest baby polar bear is “a perky,… Continue reading

Local Sports: Kaitlan Linnell achieves hockey dream

Coming up through Red Deer minor hockey Kaitlan Linnell had a dream… Continue reading

Most Read