Snowzilla (snowman)

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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.


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]


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 ("") 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]


  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. ^ 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. ^ Article in 24 December 2008 issue of US newspaper Boston Globe Archived December 26, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  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).

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