Monday, December 12, 2011

Wendover Will

Since I have been talking about giants signs on the road I am including one giant that probably not many people know.  His name is Wendover Will.
I came upon this giant in 2010 during my cross country trip.  I had left my brother at the BMW dealer in Salt Lake City and had done the 121 miles to Wendover by myself with a stop at the Bonneville Salt Flats International Speedway.  It was one of the highlights of my trip, the Salt Flats had been a dream visit since childhood when my dad had shown pictures of the famous Blue Bird land speed record cars.

After arriving in Wendover I crossed the state line in the center of town, Utah/Nevada and was immediately struck by the size of the cowboy in the center of West Wendover, the two towns are separated by the state line.

Info from Wikipedia:

Wendover Will was named after the town of Wendover and William Smith, who founded the Stateline Casino. The 63 foot (19 m)-tall sign was intended to draw travelers in from US Highways 40 and 50, later known as Interstate 80. The sign includes 1,184 feet (361 m) of neon tubing.

When the Stateline Casino changed ownership, the sign was donated to West Wendover. The town spent approximately $200,000 to restore the sign; the restoration was done by The Young Electric Sign Company. Wendover Will was moved to Wendover Boulevard in the town's center

Wendover Will was included in the Guinness Book of Records as the "World's Largest Mechanical Cowboy"

I had nothing else to do but wait for my brother to arrive.  I parked the bike in front of Wendover Will and walked to a nearby casino to get a drink and reprieve from the heat.
You can read the blog for that day here


  1. Not only a big sign, but a big cowboy sign. Seems like that should count for double points somewhere.

  2. George:

    one thing about touring is to take lots of photos, like you did. Then when you look at them later it will bring back good memories. Looking at your images made me feel that I was with you.

    Last summer we were just a feel miles from Stateline, NV on the border of CA/NV, but we didn't go, Instead we headed back to SF. Now I am wondering what the main street looked like. There was supposed to be casinos on one side, but not on the other, like in Wendover

    Riding the Wet Coast

  3. @Bob
    Yea, I go back and look through the photos once in a while and read the blog to refresh my memory :-)
    That's the beauty of the blog, later in life I can read it and relive all the trips again.
    Read the next day of my blog here: we stopped just after Zephyr Cove-Round Hill Village, NV, on the border of NV/CA, the pic of the sign is on a corner in California and across the street is a casino in Nevada :-)

  4. I've been there...hehehe. Glad you had a good trip and eye. Though difficult to miss this guy.

  5. I regret not going to see the Salt Flats when in the area. I too would have stopped next to the big cowboy.

  6. @BeemerGirl
    Yea, he's pretty big and the town very small, only one major road runs through it ;-)

    That's why I left my brother in Salt Lake City, he had a valve adjustment service and I didn't want to get there at dark. I'm planning on some day attending speed trials, that's another dream of mine.

  7. If you are ever going to Speed Week, let me know and I will go with you. Seriously, I have always wanted to go.

  8. @Gary
    In 2012 I'm planning on going to Deadhorse, Alaska. I will have to see how things shape up financially ;-)

  9. I just checked the dates and the 2012 Speed Week clashes with the London 2012 Olympics, so it would be 2013 on the salt for me.

  10. Wendover Will has quite a history. Around here we have a different name for Wendover..if it ever became official Will would become Bendover Bob.

  11. @Ken
    Bendover Bob? why? what happened? :-)