He was a stalwart of the Charnwood street – loved by the community – at least until Saturday, 9 April, when he stole away into the night.
His owner, who prefers to remain nameless, came home from work the following morning to find “Sassy” gone – but not entirely without a trace. The pot plants that normally held down the life-size plywood cut-out sasquatch were spread across the front lawn.
“My assumption was that someone had got on the piss and taken him,” she said.
“A lot of people said that we’re never going to get him back, but you always hold out hope in your heart that your sasquatch is going to make it home one day.”
The good news is that nearly five months later, he’s back. The prodigal sasquatch has returned.
The story began after the owner’s sister’s wedding in October 2020.
“We were just looking for something to do after the big day,” she said.
“Why not make a Big Foot? Everyone knows he’s the hide-and-seek champion of the world, so we thought we’d put him out the front of our house and give people a reason to smile.”
The shape was traced around the owner’s five-foot, eleven-inch body onto a piece of form ply and then painted. Solar-powered light-up eyes were added as the finishing touch.
Sassy was then placed in the front garden alongside several other creations, including “loggy daycare” consisting of a number of wooden logs carved to look like dogs, a wall painted with a yellow submarine, and a patch of cacti with googly eyes. These were all made during the COVID-19 lockdowns to bring a smile to neighbours out for their one-hour of daily exercise.
“He’s quite a stand-out. You can’t miss him, that’s for sure,” his owner said.
At least until you do miss him.
“In April, we had a tip-off from a bloke saying that he thought he had seen him behind the Charnwood Shops, so we went down there and spent a long time looking around.”
But it seems Sassy had already moved on.
“We had no luck.”
It was time to deploy “Sas Watch”. The devoted owner plastered the noticeboards, street poles, and social media groups with posters which read: “Have you seen Big Foot? Don’t worry, no one’s going to believe if you have”.
She said the phone was dishearteningly quiet over the next few months – until one night in early July, when there was a knock on her door.
“One of my neighbours came to my house and told me the sasquatch had been found.”
Upon further questioning, it turned out someone had found the curious cut-out behind the shops and knew he had seen it before but wasn’t sure where.
“So he took it home until it popped up again.”
Slightly stunned by the news, the true owner headed over to the address – still within Charnwood – to rescue Sassy. The only damage was a broken hand.
“Maybe he was trying to get away in a hurry and it got broken.”
How he ended up behind the shops remains a mystery, but the sasquatch is now back in his rightful place in the front garden, surrounded by his “friends” and equipped with a prosthetic hand and fresh coat of paint.
“The number of people who were involved in trying to bring him back was just huge,” the owner said.
“Without the community support, we couldn’t have done it. We have so many people who drive past and honk and say how much their kids love Sassy.”