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Mysterious ‘burnt’ letters appear in Canadian parkland…

It is often asked why any intelligent circle-making force doesn’t stop all this cryptic stuff and just give us some direct messages in our own language. In fact there have been a number of letter-based formations in the English language over the years – and all of them have been dismissed as hoaxes!

A recent report in the Canadian ‘Halifax Chronicle Herald’ records the appearance of the huge word ‘MAYDAY’ in the grass of a park at Citadel Hill, Halifax this summer. The report (by Sarah McGinnis) reads:


“The word "MAYDAY" was discovered Tuesday in the lawn near the town clock. The letters, each about two metres tall, are burnt grass, but along their edges the grass is twice as long and green as the rest of the lawn, creating a vibrant green patch.

A Parks Canada spokeswoman said the department didn't know anything about the peculiar message. "We have no idea how it got there," said Tanya Taylor, who assumed someone put the word there as a prank. Taylor said grounds crews were going out to Citadel Hill on Tuesday to assess the damage and try to fix it.

Howie Shepard, a Halifax groundskeeper, said the "Mayday" appeared within the last two weeks. "I whippersnip that bank . . . and it wasn't here when we did it two weeks ago," he said…

…Lorraine Robinson of Halifax called the mystery writing "really spooky."

"It seems like something you would see on TLC, like those crop circles," she said, referring to ‘The Learning Channel’. "I've never seen anything like that in my life." Robinson said she walks around Citadel Hill every few days and never noticed the unusual patch of grass before.

She also speculated it would be difficult for someone to burn the grass unnoticed, considering how busy Brunswick Street is, even in the middle of the night.

"There's too much happening downtown for someone to do that thing in a 15-minute period. Surely someone would have seen and called the police."


We have no idea what ‘whippersnipping’ is, incidentally, but we love the word.

The report goes on to speculate that the letters may have been created by fertiliser sprayed on the grass, though the letters are very clear and accurately produced.

Quite why anything or anyone would want to say ‘MAYDAY’ so prominently is open to discussion, of course. A celestial SOS, perhaps?!

The full report can be found at:

(Thanks to Geoff Stray)



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