March 12, 2015    //    James Feist
It’s not every day that you’ll see a giant 28-foot-tall Viking standing guard of a city’s downtown! Big Ole was built in 1965 for New York’s World Fair by a fiberglass sculptor named Gordon Schumaker. His shield reads “Alexandria: Birthplace of America,” which we will dive into deeper with the next wonder on the list. The statue was shipped to Alexandria after the Fair closed and was erected on a traffic island on the north end of Broadway Street. He remained at that location until 2002, when he was moved a couple blocks north to the shores of Lake Agnes. Today Big Ole stands guard at Big Ole Central Park at the trailhead of the Central Lakes Trail. Ole is a signature attraction of the city and a must-see stop for a picture with the Viking king!