Smile: It's a 15-foot snowman in Rivercliff

A 15-foot snowman in the Rivercliff section of town is giving neighbors and motorists good cause to stop and admire the snow...and smile.

Gary Gray built the snowman on Rivercliff Drive over a period of six days, starting when the snow arrived last weekend and finishing up on Friday.

“I have grandchildren,” he said. “Two of them got snow where they are, and two didn’t. I felt bad for the ones who had nothing, and so I built the snowman and sent them all pictures.”

That’s not the only reason though: Gray said he wanted to make people smile. A poem in front of the snowman explains that.

“I am just a snowman, around 15 feet tall, I can not walk around, I’m rolled up in a ball.

But just the same a snowman, that’s really what I am, I plan to hang around here, and smile for all my fans.

For if I spoke to you, this is what I’d say, please take my smile and put your frown away,” Gray’s poem reads.

Gray said he had aimed for building an 18-foot snowman, but the snow was starting to melt as he worked, so he stopped at 15 feet.

He used a wheelbarrow and a shovel to get the snow where he wanted it, mounded it and then sculpted the shape before moving on to the next layer.

There’s an oil pan attached to a stick for a hat, and a traditional snowman face.

“It’s a pretty good face,” Gray said.

He used an extension ladder for the very top touches.

A business card inside the snowman’s “pocket” explains a little bit more about the sculptor: “Gary Gray, pro painter/odd job specialist for 30 years; former Milford resident back, need your work.”

Gray said adding his business card was a last-minute thought. “I was hesitant, but I decided why not,” he said.