News from the offbeat tourist attraction landscape of Roadside America. Sightings Vol. 12, No. 5 - July 1, 2016
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The Hermit Kingdom

The mysterious Alex Jordan Jr. wasn't a road trippy kind of guy. He liked to stay home and work on his house -- but what a house! The House on the Rock, complete with monsters, demons, and massive music machines, was the Seventh Wonder of Roadside America in our original book (more on that later), and hasn't lost any of its eye-popping appeal.

House on the Rock is so overwhelmingly strange that it even plays a role in the upcoming premium cable TV series, American Gods.

The lure of home is always strong -- but, unlike Alex, most of us aren't building a 200-foot-long creature from Hades in the garage. Instead, it's your job to visit HotR and other fantastical dream sites. You won't be disappointed!


Barney Smith's Toilet Seat Art Museum

Barney Smith's Toilet Seat Art Museum.

Barney Smith turned 95 this past May and celebrated by completing his 1,230th artwork on a toilet seat. All of Barney's artworks are on toilet seats. And Barney welcomes everyone to see all 1,230 of them in his very crowded Toilet Seat Art Museum in Texas. Story

Expedition: Bigfoot!

Expedition Bigfoot.

Have you had a brush with Bigfoot? You're not alone, according to David Bakara, Bigfoot researcher. His new Expedition: Bigfoot attraction claims that Bigfoot is everywhere, and offers plenty of exhibits to prove it. Hear a Bigfoot scream! See a Bigfoot buttprint! Story

World's Largest Paul Bunyan

Paul Bunyan.

His suspenders are belts from a lumber mill; his hair and beard were made from more than a mile of resin-soaked twine. And he extends his Bunyan-size palm to all, so that shrimps like us can sit in it for photos. Story

30th Anniversary of the First
Roadside America Book

Roadside America book.

The early summer of 1986 was memorably weird, and not just because of Hands Across America. It also saw the publication by Fireside/Simon & Schuster of an opinionated, humorous, garishly wood-paneled travel guide. Roadside America was the first real print manifesto on better living through roadside attractions -- or "nutball mutants of economic Darwinism" as we called them. Our pledge to be your entertaining and trustworthy Travel Brain remains, across 30 years of highways and countless thousands of life-altering attractions.

(The book is out-of-print, out-of-date... just remember it fondly, okay?)


Roadside iPhone App 1.9.0: Upgrade

Roadside America App.

Users of the Roadside America iPhone app should download the latest upgrade (1.9.0), released in early June. Among other tweaks, it fixes a bug in Region Purchases and Restores that might fail to unlock content. The app also adds map linkage for Waze route guidance. Update on the App Store | App FAQ


Spotted by Tipsters


Tipster Meghan eyeballed a giant Minion made of hay bales - and dressed as a park ranger - in Nebraska. Craig Gee turned his peepers on a farm family putting the finishing touches on their giant Minion silo in Indiana. Don't worry, folks -- this minion thing will be over any day now....

Wild Monkeys.

Julie C.H. spent several days tracking the Wild Monkeys of Dania Beach Blvd. Her assessment: the best place to see them is along the back fence of the Motel 6 parking lot.

cold War Horse.

Sheathed in a form-fitting red hazmat suit, "Cold War Horse" calls attention to the now-shuttered Rocky Flats nuclear weapons plant. John T. paid a visit, snapped some pics, and afterwards probably didn't need a Silkwood shower.

For more fun discoveries and updates from the road, head over to the Latest Tips.


Enjoy the holiday!
The Team

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Apps & Tools

Roadside America iPhone app Roadside America for iPhone
11,000+ USA/Canada offbeat attractions, including research targets, interactive "Near Me" maps. New places added frequently! New categories, top-rated recommendations, and more!

$2.99 on the App Store (incl. access to 1 region); addtl. regions or "All Access" unlock is optional in-app purchase.
iPhone, iPod touch (iPad compatible)


Roadside Presidents iPhone app

Roadside Presidents App for iPhone
US Presidents, VPs, First Ladies, even dastardly assassins -- visit where they lived, worked, played, died!

$2.99 iPhone, iPod touch, (iPad compatible). Available on the App Store.


Roadside America iPhone app My Sights Route Planner - Save places you read about on Roadside America, create a trip, and then email it to friends or export a .cvs file to upload onto a GPS device (Garmin, TomTom, etc.). Learn more and try it!


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Main image: House on the Rock., Spring Green, Wisconsin. The Mikado.