Category: Built to Last

Serves four (hundred)Long Beach, WA and Seaside, OR

Giant Frying Pan sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Well, I can’t feature the Winlock Egg without giving you something to cook it in, can I? Just over the coast range from Winlock is the town of Long Beach, home of the perfect roadside companion to the World’s Largest Egg. Since it’s not exactly as flamboyant as, say, a giant orange, people often blow… More

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Eggstra largeWinlock, WA

World's Largest Egg sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Now, I know I can go to the market and find eggs in small, medium, large, extra-large and jumbo. But can I get a round dozen in World’s Largest? (Maybe that’s what those Washington cooperative farmers have been hatching…)

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Two-ton tater totO'Leary, PEI, Canada

Giant Potato sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Oh, the fates were cruel to me this day. I happened to pass through a town that shared my last name, and in that town I stumbled upon a giant fiberglass potato. In front of a potato museum. Which had closed an hour before. Now, really. That’s just not fair.

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Tuxedo twinsCut Bank, MT and Chehalis, WA

Cut Bank Penguin sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Bless their hearts, these birds aren’t quite so elegant as the Topeka Wren, but that’s no reason not to stand proud and proclaim their purpose. Actually, even that is a little muddled here. Maybe Cut Bank really is the coldest spot in the nation… just don’t tell International Falls, MN. Or, you know, the entire… More

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Wild goose chaseWawa, ON, Canada

Wawa Goose sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Wawa is the Ojibwe word for “wild goose”—a fact the town of Wawa, Ontario would prefer you didn’t forget. And just to make sure the lesson hits home, there is a veritable flock of giant geese waiting to welcome you. I just hope these guys don’t get the notion to fly south for the winter—then… More

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Wrented wingsTopeka, KS

Topeka Wren sketch by Chandler O'Leary

I’m always up for the hokey and awkward when it comes to roadside attractions, but every now and again you find a true masterpiece. Case in point: the Topeka Wren (formerly the mascot for WREN radio in Lawrence, KS) nearly took my breath away. This bird is a couple decades older than your average roadside… More

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In the pinkMarquette, IA

Pink Elephant sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Some of my favorite roadside attractions are the ones that are totally incongruous with the surrounding area (like finding a blue whale in the middle of Oklahoma). Unless, that is, I’m wildly misinformed, and Iowa is actually chock full of elephants…

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And the winner is…

Darwin, MN illustration by Chandler O'Leary

I don’t normally post on Thursdays, but I had to break in here to tell you that the Giant Twine Ball in Darwin, MN is the clear people’s choice! No disrespect to its lovely (and technically larger) sisal-sister in Kansas, but the voters have spoken, and by an overwhelming margin, Minnesota’s masterpiece is the clear… More

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Feeling blueCatoosa, OK

Blue Whale of Catoosa sketch by Chandler O'Leary

I’m not sure if kids used to find this guy diverting or terrifying, but the Blue Whale of Catoosa is still just as memorable as he must have been in his heyday. This spot was once a roadside swimmin’ hole along Route 66. These days it’s just a roadside monument, but that’s okay—it’s not like… More

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Orange you gladShasta Lake, CA

Giant Orange sketch by Chandler O'Leary

Apparently these giant orange stands (which are actually ducks) used to be so common along the old Pacific Highway that by the time you got thirsty on your journey, you’d have arrived at the next one. There are just a handful remaining today, and I was extra lucky to discover that this one was actually… More

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