World's Largest Collection of Smallest Versions of Largest Things – Lucas, Kansas - Atlas Obscura
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Lucas, Kansas

World's Largest Collection of Smallest Versions of Largest Things

A roadside attraction and museum dedicated to exploring iconic roadside structures. 

Erika Nelson, creator of the World’s Largest Collection of the World’s Smallest Versions of the World’s Largest Things Traveling Roadside Attraction and Museum, travels the US, looking for “monsters of the road” (i.e. largest ketchup bottle, largest ball of yarn), photographs them and makes a World’s Smallest Version of said World’s Largest Thing.

Once a World’s Largest Thing has been photo-documented, researched, and a site visit made, a tiny replica of the ‘thing’ is created. “Once the replica is produced, it’s added to the window displays of the Traveling Roadside Attraction,” said Erika. “When possible, I bring the World’s Smallest Version back to its parent World’ Largest Thing, taking a Meta-Photo of the Big with the Small.” The replicas and photos are then displayed inside the traveling museum, as well as online.

The World’s Smallest Versions of The World’s Largest Things are made from a variety of materials. For example, to replicate the world’s largest ball of rubber bands, Nelson used the miniature rubber bands one can find at an orthodontist’s office.

On, Nelson writes, “I typically travel alone, supplementing the tours with speaking engagements and community events, bringing art to the public and encouraging the celebration of those quirky unique things that combat Genericana.”

Erika Nelson is an artist, educator and one of America’s foremost experts and speakers on the World’s Largest Things. In addition to traveling to communities with her own unique traveling museum, Erika Nelson is a consultant to cities and Chambers of Commerce seeking to create their own “World’s Largest Thing” or roadside attraction to increase tourism, marketing and economic development for their community.

When not on the road, Erika and the “World’s Largest Collection of The World’s Smallest Versions of The World’s Largest Things” van can be found in Lucas, Kansas.

Obscura Day location: April 9, 2011.

Know Before You Go

The World's Largest Collection of Smallest Versions of Largest Things acquired a downtown building in Lucas, Kansas last year. The new building has allowed the collection to transition from traveling displays and sideshow banners to a new Roadside Sideshow Expo. Visitors keen on visiting the collection can find it at 214 South Main in Lucas. The museum is open by chance or by appointment.