MONTREAL - Following a recent trip to Montreal, Dave Barnes was inspired to showcase his passion for the Canadiens in his own unique way.
The 35-year-old Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador resident did just that when he used a push lawn mower to create a giant Habs logo measuring 50 feet long and 30 feet high outside his duplex.
"When I got to Montreal, you could feel the pride of the team. That kind of got inside me. I could really notice the pride people took in their property out there, and you could see the red, white and blue everywhere. Walking downtown, you're always submersed in it. It just gives you that feeling," said Barnes. "When I came back to Newfoundland, I was looking back on my holiday. One day I was mowing the lawn and I thought to myself, 'How could I make this fun?' And it turned into something better."
According to Barnes, the project took somewhere between 30 and 45 minutes to complete from start to finish.
It all began shortly after his girlfriend, Jeannie Nugent, took their dog, Pablo, for a walk.
"She left and I was just mowing the lawn. When she came back, that's what we had," explained Barnes with a laugh. "Then when she saw it, she kind of just looked at it, smiled and walked in the house. I thought she was going to get quite upset at first, until she smiled. But, she actually started helping to take pictures after that, so I knew my stuff wasn't going to be out on the front step."
As for the feedback from his neighbors, so far so good.
"One of them said that he might do something similar. That was kind of the goal, for people to notice it and take pride in their property," mentioned Barnes. "Tourism is always big for every community, so it's always good to have stuff like that. I'm going to do my best to keep it alive until the snow comes."
While he isn't an artist by trade, the lifelong Canadiens fan certainly has a penchant for creativity. This was his inaugural push lawn mower project, though.
"This kind of stuff always intrigues me. It comes naturally. I literally just cranked the mower to the lowest setting and just started going. No planning," said Barnes. "I've always liked doing things with my hands, kind of artsy. We have snow sculpture contests and stuff like that, but this is a first."
He does have one small regret about his creation, however.
"If I knew it was going to go this far, I wish I took the time to make things even, make it a little better," joked Barnes.
It looks pretty darn good to us, Dave! Job well done.