News / Calgary

Sage Hill rock becomes Calgary celebrity after flipping SUV

Residents in the northwest community are asking the property manager to preserve the rock

A landscaping rock in Sage Hill got the better of three vehicles within days of being placed in a parking lot.

Nicole Dunai / Courtesy

A landscaping rock in Sage Hill got the better of three vehicles within days of being placed in a parking lot.

A landscaping rock with the ability to roll vehicles on their side may now be moved to a place of honour at a shopping centre in Calgary's northwest.

Sage Hill residents watched the saga unfold on social media over the weekend as not one, not two, but three separate vehicles got hung up on or flipped by the rock in the parking lot of Sage Hill Crossing.

Nicole Dunai, manager at the Sage Hill Bottle Depot, said a curb in the parking lot outside the business had been causing trouble for drivers, who were not seeing it and getting stuck in it.

"We had a sandwich board that was there because the curb itself isn't filled in in the middle," said Dunai.

Vehicles had driven over the curb and into the hole and the property management company – RioCan – told staff at the bottle depot that the sandwich board was a liability.

They removed the board, and for a few days there was nothing. Then sometime last week, the rock was placed in the spot instead.

The first vehicle to tangle with the rock – and lose – was a black Toyota SUV around lunch on Saturday.

Other cars got hung up on the rock, but this SUV flipped on its side. A witness said no airbags deployed.

Nicole Dunai

Other cars got hung up on the rock, but this SUV flipped on its side. A witness said no airbags deployed.

Mark Nguyen was driving into the parking lot with his family when he first saw a police cruiser and the flipped SUV. He snapped a few photos and posted them to Sage Hill Chat – a Facebook group for local residents.

"We kept a safe distance while we walked around it snapping pics. I posted it pretty quickly after that," he said.

Brangwyn Jones, another Sage Hill resident and administrator of the Facebook group, said the rock became a local celebrity after that, as more photos of the other cars found their way online.

He said there was a bit of a divide between those who wanted the rock removed to prevent further mishaps, and those who wanted it saved.

"It's been fun to watch as the community comes together in support of this rock, and against the rock," said Jones.

Dunai said RioCan management told her that the rock would be removed, but she's lobbying to keep it nearby in a safer location.

"We're tying to get it moved to the front of the building so this famous rock will still be a part of the community," said Dunai.

Nguyen, who snapped the photos that set the story in motion, said he was sad to see the rock leave just as it was getting the recognition it deserved.

He even penned a haiku to the metamorphic celebrity:

"Predator of cars

A source of concern and laughs

Farewell, Sage Hill Rock."

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