World’s largest watermelon sculpture makes its home in Muscatine park

The World’s Largest Watermelon was delivered to Riverside Park, Wednesday morning.
Published: Sep. 19, 2023 at 1:46 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 20, 2023 at 9:24 PM CDT
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MUSCATINE, Iowa (KWQC) - The World’s Largest Watermelon was delivered to Riverside Park, Wednesday morning.

The Canadian Pacific-Kansas City Railroad pulled the flatcar holding the 40-foot-long, 16-foot-tall 16,000-pound sculpture from Silver Hawk Fabrication to the foundation near Millennium Plaza at about 9 a.m. and residents along the route in the south end of Muscatine had a great first look at the sculpture as CPKC pulled the flatcar through Muscatine.

The Watermelon was created by the fabricators at Silver Hawk Fabrication and painted by local artist Johan Umana, according to a media release from the city.

Bob’s Crane Service & Equipment Rental lifted the melon from the flatcar to its permanent foundation, city officials said.

“We ran it through several committees, the city council, parks and recreation, and also public art commissions,” said Muscatine Mayor Brad Bark. “Everybody was good with it, started talking to the businesses, and we accomplished it by working together.”

Mayor Bark noted that the foundation for the sculpture was a collaborative effort with Premier Yard Restoration, Hahn Ready Mix, Heuer Construction, Inc., Hoffmann Inc Fabrication, and the City of Muscatine.

“I would also like to thank Kent Feeds (Kent Corp), Greater Muscatine Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Community Foundation of Greater Muscatine, Muscatine Power and Water, Ryan Streck, Jason Schillig, Musco Lighting, SSAB, Jack Michaels, Parks and Rec Advisory Commission, City Council, Public Art Commission and HNI Corporation,” Bark said.

According to Bark, with financial and in-kind donations from about 15 entities, the entire project has been paid for without using any taxpayer funds from the City.