The largest rocking horse on the planet, a 5,500-pound ponderosa pine pony needs a new home.
Just like North Bay's struggle to find a new location for the Dionne Quints home, the municipality of Innisfil, near Barrie is looking for a place for its giant horse.
Craftsmen at Munro's Furnishings, located at Innisfil Beach Road and Highway 400, built the giant rocking horse in 2010, and an official certificate from Guinness headquarters in London, England, confirmed the world record.
People came from far and wide to see the landmark and take photos, but those glory days are over. Munro's sold the property and the horse is now homeless.
New business owner Camp Mart gifted the horse to the town.
"The municipality currently does not have a permanent location in which to place the horse," economic development officer Marc Seguin noted in a report to council.
However, the strategic report "identified the importance of local attractions as we move forward with tourism and culture."
"In an effort to save this roadside attraction, staff arranged to have it moved to a temporary municipal site until such a time that it could be relocated to a permanent location within the community."
And so the celebrated horse now sits abandoned and alone, across the road from where it was once proudly displayed.
"The giant rocking horse has been known as an Innisfil landmark since it made its way into the Guinness World Record Book in 2011," Seguin said. "It has become a popular piece of public art in Innisfil. Such pieces of public are popular to tourists."
The structure is almost 6 metres high (20 feet), 1.8 metres wide (9 feet) and 7.1 metres in length (23.3 feet).
While it originally weighed 5,500 pounds, it has almost doubled in weight from being out in the elements over the past five years.
A crane and a flat bed truck will be needed to move the icon to its new home.
Staff will be accepting Request for Proposals (RFP's) to relocate the giant rocking horse and have established criteria to determine where its new home should be — including its location, visual impact, opportunity for public access/viewing, benefit to community, benefit to business, proposed use, placement (on concrete pads) and proposed maintenance schedule.
An agreement with the new owner will include first right of refusal to the town for disposal of the horse.
Proposals will be accepted until 2 p.m. on April 29.
"The town could proceed to place the rocking horse up for sale to anyone who wishes to make a purchase," Seguin concluded.
The expected $2,000 to 3,000 moving cost will be paid for through the Economic Development budget as a means of ensuring it remains within the municipality.
"It is made in Innisfil and should remain within the community," Seguin said. "Local business owners should have the opportunity to utilize the horse as a means of attracting tourists and patrons to their site."