|The Freedom Rock is a large 12-foot tall (approx. 60+ ton) boulder located in rural Iowa located along Iowa Highway 25 in western Iowa approximately one mile south of exit 86 on Interstate 80. Nothing for sale here, no admission fees, free parking, and a wonderful Iowa tribute to the men and women who have served, are serving, and have sacrificed their lives for our freedom.
The artist, Ray "Bubba" Sorensen II, was inspired by the movie Saving Private Ryan, and wanted to give Veterans a unique recognition on Memorial Day. Since 1999 it is repainted every year. Sorensen is not commissioned or paid to paint The Freedom Rock, he uses his own money along with donations and sales of Freedom Rock merchandise to fund the project.
Sorensen paints over the previous years mural with white paint and starts with a black canvas. He draws a sketch of his idea on paper and then draws the design by free hand onto the rock. This takes him anywhere from one to three weeks to paint. He gets his ideas from books, movies, previous artwork and images by other artists. We read on the board that there used to be two green helicopters, but that after some folks came to spread ashes of their loved ones at the base of the rock, Mr. Sorensen offered to put them in the green paint. He did it a few times and eventually turned it into one large helicopter so that it could contain more of the ashes of fallen heroes.
In the Spring of 2013, Sorensen and his family began traveling the state of Iowa to put a smaller, and unique to their area, Freedom Rock in each of the 99 counties. I think that is great!
If you would like to see more photos, the link below shows the rock in previous years:
Freedom Rock pics
If you are anywhere close, you shouldn't miss the opportunity to see what is truly an American treasure.