A major milestone has been accomplished.
Just in time for the centennial celebration of the Lake County Round-Up, the Western Heritage Committee (one of the three sub-committees of the rural tourism studio) unveiled their statue on Tuesday, Aug. 27, made entirely of horseshoes that featured the Chamber of Commerce logo; a pair of cowboy boots that stand approximately six feet tall. The statue is located in the heart of downtown Lakeview behind Washington Federal bank facing F street. It has LED lighting inside the boots so the statue will shine bright at night.
The artist of the masterpiece is Bud Thomas an artist from Philomath, near Corvallis, who has had a love for creating masterpieces for various towns and companies.
He’s been working on the project for eight months, coming up with the design and the process.
“The horseshoes are all different sizes,” Thomas said. “In the base is a quarter inch worth of welding to create the base. There’s about 110 horseshoes per boot.”
Of those 110 horseshoes, they are all welded and sculpted together to make the design. He had to shape the horseshoes in order to get them to look the way that they do. The spurs are made of horseshoes as well, with little ball-bearings put in to help hold them together.
“I probably slept about three hours a night for the past month,” he said with a laugh. “I’ve been designing it in my head, then I’d wake up and do some work, sleep for a few more hours and then get up and begin working again.”
Thomas said the horseshoes on the base are number fours and the boots are made up various sizes including number two and number three horseshoes.
“I had to come up with the entire style and I wanted them to have kind of a wrinkled affect and coming up with the idea to put the stitching in,” he said. “This entire design was a free-hand design. There was no blue print or anything to go off of.”
Thomas said he worked entirely off of the pair of boots that are located on the Lake County Chamber of Commerce website and he admitted that the hardest part was coming up with the shape and the design.
“I used that design to help come up with the design for the buckle and spur,” Thomas said.
This is the second milestone of sorts for the Western Heritage Committee as they were also responsible for the Fair and Round-Up banners that hang on every light pole throughout downtown Lakeview and the big banner between the Heryford building and The Gathering Place across Hwy 395 and F street.
For more information contact the Lake County Chamber of Commerce at 541-947-6040.