“And that makes you larger than life…”
It’s no doubt all I can think about is Backstreet Boys these days. Last week their new single hit the radio waves and everyone has been talking about their big comeback. Then it was announced at the Miss USA pageant that 98 Degrees would be going on tour. What’s next? N*Sync?
In the meantime, I thought we could take a look at few things in Shreveport-Bossier City that are, as I said earlier, “larger than life.” You may be familiar with a few of these, others you may not. Either way, sit a spell, turn up some early 2000s jams and check out all these king-sized objects that are literally larger than life.
1. Art the Dog at Shreveport Regional Arts Council’s Central ARTSTATION
ART the Dalmatian is a beacon of light for those in downtown Shreveport — literally. The 19.5 feet dog sits on the corner of SRAC’s Central ARTSTATION overlooking the city. He was designed by Brandon Oldenburg and William Joyce of the former Moonbot Studios.
2. The Cowboy at Topps Western World
He’s more than just a cowboy — he’s a Muffler Man! According to roadsideamerica.com, these giant cowboy models (our own standing at 22 feet) were built in the 1960s as part of an advertising campaign with Phillips 66 gas station. The late owner of Topps, Bubba Reeves, acquired the cowboy sometime after 1982 when an east Texas gas station went out of business.
3. Roses on the Red River
These stainless steel “RiverView Roses” were created by Keatchie artist Greg Verbois and were installed in 2004 on the Shreveport river front. They have become an iconic place for photographers and a backdrop for weddings, concerts and parades.
4. A Massive Mural
Once in a Millennium Moon was painted in 2001 and was in collaboration with SRAC and artist Meg Saligman. The mural is touted by roadsideamerica.comas the largest mural in the United States spanning 30,000 square feet on a 14-story building. The woman featured alone on the side is a student from one of our area high schools. The mural was painted by over 2,600 people.
5. ‘Safe Harbor’ Buoy
Safe Harbor was unveiled in 2012 along the Shreveport river front. The artist, Deedee Morrison, used 60 sheets of industrial grade aluminum to fabricate the statue. Oh, and it lights up at night!
6. The King Kong of Pawn
As long as Top Dollar Pawn has been around, so have their gorillas. When you bill yourself as the “King Kong of Pawn,” you’ve gotta have a gorilla — and in 2013, the pawn shop had 26 of them. We can only guess he’s grown his collection since then. Oh yeah, and they’re over 12 feet tall.
7. Church of the Cross
If you’re on I-20 headed east, chances are you’ve seen this larger than life cross. The cross, which is a part of Haughton’s Central Assembly of God, stands 199 feet tall (just 11 feet shorter than the tallest crossin the United States). The structure was erected in 2009 and cost over $700,000 to build.
8. The Biggest Beer on Tap
Billboards are used to get our attention and this one totally did! On I-20 heading west (before you get to Industrial Drive) you’ll spot this new addition to the landscape. Flying Heart Brewing and Pub in Bossier City has a billboard featuring a very large beer and tap, the biggest I’ve seen yet. I hear their pizzas are pretty big, too.