World’s Largest Ball of Twine, Cawker City, KS

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Probably the king of roadside attractions, the world’s largest ball of twine (sisal twine, to be exact) has been a work in progress since 1953. The ball was started by resident Frank Stoeber as simply a way to store extra twine. According to Roadside America, “By 1957, his twine ball weighed 2.5 tons and stood eight feet tall. By 1961, when he turned it over to the town, Stoeber had over 1,600,000 feet of twine rolled into a sphere 11 feet in diameter.” Now (as of October 2015), the ball has a circumference of 43 feet, could stretch 1530 miles, and weighs nearly 20,100 pounds. It is obviously a source of pride for this small town in northern Kansas. The ball has its own shelter, the surrounding sidewalks are painted with squiggly lines depicting unraveling twine, and a Twine-A-Thon is held every August. Visited October 2015.

Location: On Wisconsin Street (Route 24).

 

 

 

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World’s Largest Strawberry, Strawberry Point, IA

054The World’s Largest Strawberry is appropriately located in this small town in Iowa. We’re not talking about real giant fruit here, but rather a 15-foot-tall sculpture located outside city hall. Made of fiberglass, it was erected in the 1960s. Visited June 2015.

Location: 111 Commercial St.

World’s Largest Big Mac, North Huntingdon, PA

Big Mac

“Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickle, onions on a sesame seed bun” — and it’s 14 feet tall. The World’s Largest Big Mac is inside a McDonald’s located along the historic Lincoln Highway in North Huntingdon, Pa., just south of Pittsburgh. The restaurant also houses a Big Mac Museum, featuring items such as bobbleheads, Big Mac packaging through the years, and old equipment that once helped make the sandwich that launched an advertising and food craze. According to Roadside America, the museum was opened in 2007 on the 40th anniversary of the birth of the Big Mac. RA explains the restaurant isn’t the actual birthplace of the famous double-decker sandwich, however; that honor goes to another McDonald’s located in nearby Uniontown run by the same family. The North Huntingdon location is right off the Pennsylvania Turnpike, so it gets more traffic. I wonder what’s in that special sauce, anyway? Visited December 2008.

Location: 9061 Route 30, one-half mile west of the I-76 Irwin exit

World’s Largest Bug, Providence, RI

Big Blue Bug

This giant termite, known as the Big Blue Bug or Nibbles Woodaway (get it?), is quite the landmark in Rhode Island’s capital city.  It has been featured in movies, on TV, and even on the state’s lottery ticket.  At 9 feet tall and 58 feet long, it is reportedly the world’s largest bug.  New England Pest Control erected the Big Blue Bug on its roof in 1980; the exterminating business changed its name to Big Blue Bug Solutions in 2012.  The bug was named Nibbles as a result of a contest in 1990.  Visited August 2014.

Location: Big Blue Bug Solutions is located at 161 O’Connell St.  The bug can be seen along an elevated portion of I-95, just south of the interchange with I-195 (making it a bit tricky to take a picture!).