Giant snowman looms larger over Anchorage neighborhood

With powder piling up, neighbors build 25-foot 'Snowzilla'

Posted: Tuesday, December 26, 2006

ANCHORAGE - Snowzilla the snowman is back and bigger than ever.

The original Snowzilla towered 16 feet over Billy Powers' yard in his east Anchorage neighborhood last winter. Now with snow piling up over the past week, Powers is resurrecting the giant figure, supersized.

This time he expects it to tower about 25 feet, top hat and all, he said Monday.

"It's a work in progress," said Powers. He expects to complete Snowzilla II by today.

Last year's version, with Alaskan Amber beer bottles for eyes, drew scores of photo-snapping crowds and TV crews from Japan and Russia before it melted in the spring.

Powers vowed to build the snowman again this year. But until last week, there wasn't enough snow. Then came last week's snowfalls, which dumped 2 feet on the city.

By Sunday, Powers and some friends bundled up in layers of outdoor gear and got to work.

Scaffolding surrounded Snow-zilla. Next-door neighbor John Woolsey pumped water into a garbage bin of snow and stirred to make the powder more moldable. He put globs to Snowzilla's head and smoothed it into place.

At the foundation of the new creation is a piece of the original Snowzilla. Last spring Powers' son Hunter put the last remaining chunk of the melted snowman in a plastic bag and tucked it in the freezer.

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That lump was ceremonioulsly used as a starting piece for the new Snowzilla.

A neighbor with a snowplow pushed drifts up to Powers' house for easy access. Last year, neighborhood children lugged sleds loaded with snow, but doing most of the heavy lifting this year are Powers, Woolsey and neighbor Darrell Estes.

"A snowman's good for everybody," Powers said.

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