The seven-story Christ of the Ozarks Statue continues to be one of the most visited attractions in the Ozarks. Standing sixty-seven feet high, the statue overlooks the picturesque Victorian village of Eureka Springs, Arkansas. More than 250,000 people come to view the Christ of the Ozarks Statue each year. The Christ of the Ozarks was designed by Emmet Sullivan, an apprentice to Gutzon Borglum, sculptor of the Mount Rushmore National Monument in South Dakota. It is open to the public without charge every day.
"The Christ of the Ozarks turns 50 this year -- 17 years longer than Jesus walked the earth," said Kent Butler, a spokesperson for the Great Passion Play. "We are in the final process of the restoration effort for the memorial statue -- kind of a face-lift if you will -- in celebration of 50 years."
“The restoration has been a slow and tedious process,” said Randall Christy, President/CEO of the Passion Play. "The statue had several blemishes that amounted to deteriorated concrete, which needs to be removed, ground out, refilled with concrete, textured and painted," he said.
Interesting facts about the statue include:
- Every inch and ounce of the statue was built by hand; no segment was poured.
- The foundation of the statue required 340 tons of concrete interlaced with steel virtually welded into the rock of Magnetic Mountain.
- The statue is made of 24 layers of white mortar on a steel frame. It was necessary to build an elevator up the side of the framework, which was completely surrounded by scaffolding during construction.
- The face is approximately 15 feet in height.
- The hands from wrist to fingertip measure approximately 7 feet.
- The total weight of the statue is over two million pounds.
- The arm spread from fingertip to fingertip is 65 feet.
- The statue is located on Magnetic Mountain at an altitude of 1,500 feet.
“We want everyone to come and celebrate the Christ with us on Saturday, October 29, 2016 at 5:00PM,” Christy said. “We don’t worship the Statue, but it is a great reminder of how big our God is.”
The last Passion Play performance of the 2016 season is also on Saturday, October 29, 2016. The Bible Museum, Art Museum, History Museum, and Holy Land Tour is also happening during that day. Ticket reservations, performance schedules and special event information are available online at GreatPassionPlay.org or call toll free 800-882-7529.