The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

September 26, 2013

Boomer statue moved to storage

By Robert Barron, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — The statue of “Boomer” that has graced the downtown area beside Cherokee Strip Conference Center has been placed in storage.

Jim McClain, public works director for the city of Enid, said the statue is being stored in a city building until officials determine where its new home will be. The trees around the grounds also have been removed and will be replanted at the Enid Recycling Center in Frisco Park.

The statue and trees were removed Thursday to make way for the demolition of the conference center. A new hotel and parking garage will be built in the space occupied by the old center. The Kress Building facade also will be removed. City officials said it would be too expensive to try to save it and incorporate it into the new hotel design.

The Enid Walk of Fame, which contained pavers in honor of outstanding Enid residents, also has been taken up and placed in storage, pending a move to a permanent location.

“Boomer” was created by renowned Enid-area artist Harold Holden, depicting a man on horseback at full gallop riding in the Cherokee Strip Land Run of 1893. The rider holds the reins in his proper left hand and a flag stake in his right hand. The statue was placed and dedicated in 1987.

“We obviously want to protect it when the building comes down, and we’ll do that,” said Assistant City Manager Joan Riley.