Standing 9 metres (30 feet) tall, the Big Nickel has stood outside the Dynamic Earth Museum in Ontario, Canada, since July 1964. It is, exactly as the name suggests, a giant-sized representation of a Canadian nickel. It was commissioned to mark the centennial of Canada itself, and also shows the nickel designed for distribution in 1951, which was the bicentennial of the discovery of the metal from which the coin takes its name, and which was a source of wealth to the town in bygone days.

A competition was held by a local newspaper to decide how best to mark the centennial, and it was won by a fireman named Ted Szilva, whose idea was initially dismissed as impractical. But he was not to be easily thwarted, and put his money where his mouth was by buying a plot of land, and exploiting a loophole in the building laws to avoid paying some taxes. His tenacity paid off, and along with a local signmaker, Bruno Cavallo, he launched the project, which was to include a coin museum and park, including exhibits as diverse as the "eternal flame" half-dollar coin commemorating US President Kennedy, and ancient forms of money used by aboriginal peoples.

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