Snowzilla

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For the 2010 U.S. winter storm, see Snowmageddon.

Snowzilla is a giant snowman which has been erected each pre-Christmas season since 2005 in the front yard of private resident Billy Powers' home in Anchorage, Alaska, USA.

History[edit]

The first Snowzilla was built in 2005. It rose to 16 feet (4.9 m), and featured a corncob pipe, a carrot nose, and two eyes made out of beer bottles.[1] After drawing widespread attention,[2] the snowman returned the following year, built to a height of 22 feet (6.7 m).[3][4] In 2008 the accumulated snow rose to an estimated 25 feet (7.6 m) height.[5][6]

Controversy[edit]

One neighbor in the block complained of heavy traffic and cited safety concerns about a very large snowman on the front lawn of a residential neighborhood, as a result of which city officials issued a cease and desist order in December 2008, preventing Snowzilla from being completed (it was about 50% completed when the order was issued and the accumulated snow removed). However, a few days later it "mysteriously" re-appeared on Powers' lawn, although he denied making it.[7][8][9]

A strong public outcry soon arose over the apparent municipal interference with an inoffensive holiday tradition, and a website ("Snowzilla.org") appeared on 23 December 2008.[6] On Christmas morning, a "squad" of small sign-carrying snowmen appeared in front of Anchorage city hall, but the city quickly demolished the "protestors".[10][11] In 2009 a new mayor was sitting in City Hall, and the family said that it expected to be able to erect the giant snowman without interference.[12][13] Writing about the January 2011 version, an editor for Alaska magazine described Snowzilla as "a symbol of Alaska civil disobedience enacted, appropriately enough, in snow".[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Anchorage man builds monster snowman", Associated Press at USA Today, December 19, 2005.
  2. ^ "Giant snowman rises even bigger in Alaska neighborhood", Associated Press at USA Today, December 26, 2006. ("Last year's version, with Alaskan Amber beer bottles for eyes, drew scores of photo-snapping crowds and TV crews from Japan and Russia before it melted in the spring.")
  3. ^ Katie Pesznecker, "Snowzilla II: It's bigger", Anchorage Daily News, December 25, 2006.
  4. ^ "Alaska Snowman Has Some Neighbors Fuming", Associated Press at The Washington Post, January 6, 2007.
  5. ^ http://www.charlotteobserver.com/104/story/434020.html Article in 24 December 2008 issue of US newspaper Charlotte Observer[dead link]
  6. ^ a b Elizabeth Bluemink, "Snowzilla rises again in Anchorage, despite city opposition", Deseret News, December 25, 2008.
  7. ^ http://www.boston.com/news/odd/articles/2008/12/24/giant_snowman_rises_again_in_alaska____mysteriously/ Article in 24 December 2008 issue of US newspaper Boston Globe[dead link]
  8. ^ "Alaska's 'Snowzilla' Rises Again, Mysteriously", Associated Press at Fox News, December 24, 2008.
  9. ^ "Snowzilla Declared Public Nuisance", Morning Edition, NPR, December 23, 2008 (audio).
  10. ^ Kyle Hopkins, "Snowzilla squad suffers setback at City Hall", Anchorage Daily News, December 26, 2008.
  11. ^ Radley Balko, "Humidity Built the Snowman, Anchorage Brought Him Down", Reason, December 29, 2008.
  12. ^ Joshua Saul, "Snowzilla rises again", Alaska Dispatch, December 18, 2009.
  13. ^ James Halpin, "Snowzilla will rise again, likely without city interference", Anchorage Daily News, December 19, 2009.
  14. ^ Rebecca Luczycki, "Snowzilla", Alaska, January 11, 2011, archived from the original at the Wayback Machine (accessed 2013-02-02).

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 61°12′24″N 149°49′05″W / 61.20675°N 149.81802°W / 61.20675; -149.81802