· Egg Width: 25.7 feet
· Egg Height: 18.3 feet
· Total Height: 31.6 feet
· Material: Alumuinum skin
· Turns like a weathervane
· Weight: 5,000 pounds
· Star Patterns: 524
· Triangular Pieces: 2,206
· Visible Facets: 3,512
· Nuts and Bolts: 6,978
· Internal Struts: 177
· Man Hours: 12,000
Vegreville, Canada is the site of the largest Easter egg in the world. The Easter egg or Ukrainian 'Pysanka,' was constructed in 1975 to commemorate early Ukrainian settlements in an area east of Edmonton.
The unique nature and complicated geometry of the egg shape made the design of the Pysanka a highly complex undertaking. Professor Ronald Resch, a computer scientist at the University of Utah, agreed to take on the design project.
Professor Resch was responsible for the entire Pysanka concept which required the development of new computer programs. The Pysanka is really an immense jig-saw puzzle containing 524 star patterns, 2,206 equilateral triangles, 3,512 visible facets, 6,978 nuts and bolts, and 177 internal struts.
As a result of Professor Resch's work and leadership, the Pysanka is recognized around the world as not only a unique artistic masterpiece but also an achievement of nine mathematical, architectural and engineering firsts. The design represents the first computer modeling of an egg.
Thousands of tourists from around the world visit Vegreville annually and marvel at the Pysanka. It measures 25.7 feet long, 18.3 feet wide, and stands 31.6 feet high. It is one of the premier tourist attractions on the Trans Canada Yellowhead Highway.
The 2,000-pound aluminum skin is attached to the central mast at a 30-degree angle with 177 turnbuckle struts. Cessco International Ltd., Edmonton, fabricated the massive internal structure which weighs 3,000 pounds. The Pysanka rests on a 27,000-pound base of concrete and steel and turns in the wind like a weathervane.
Paul Sembaliuk, an authority on traditional Easter egg design, used three colors - bronze, silver and gold - to symbolize prosperity. Bronze is the predominant colour of the design and suggests the "good earth", the land on which our forefathers struggled for survival and existence.
Five distinct symbols make up the design. The radiating gold stars on the end sections symbolize Life and Good Fortune. The three-pointed stars, in alternating gold and silver, symbolize the Trinity, representing the strong devotion to the faith of our ancestors. The band of silver circumscribing the Pysanka, with no beginning or end, symbolizes Eternity.
On the central barrel section, gold and silver windmills with six vanes and points symbolize a Rich Harvest. The most prominent motif of the design - the silver wolf's teeth which point to the centre from the silver band - symbolize the main message of protection and security afforded our pioneers by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
The dedication message is written in four languages: English, Ukrainian, French and German. It reads: "This Pysanka (Easter Egg) symbolizes the harmony, vitality and culture of the community and is dedicated as a tribute to the One-Hundredth Anniversary of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who brought peace and security to the largest multi-cultural settlement in all of Canada."