When you enter the town of Vining Minnesota in Ottertail County, you aren’t expecting to see a giant foot, but that is exactly what greets you from the side of Hwy 210.
The Big Foot sculpture is one of many in the town created by artist Ken Nyberg. Ken grew up in the area, and worked as a foreman for Volden Construction, traveling across the U.S. building grain elevators. His metal sculpture creations first appeared in the 1980’s, and were made from scrap metal just for fun. The Big Foot appeared in 1991, becoming the identifying landmark for the town of Vining.
Ken retired in 1999 and has since spent his free time creating masterpieces out of his shop at his home on East Battle Lake, placing them all around town, and across Ottertail County.
A lot of his creations can be found in Nyberg Park next to the Big Foot Gas Station in Vining. The park features his elephant sculpture, the dancing knife and spoon, a jumbo potted cactus, and a huge watermelon. That park is also home to a special sculpture to Ken, the one he made to honor his daughter Karen Nyberg, a NASA astronaut who traveled to the International Space Station in both 2008 on Space Shuttle Discovery, and again in 2013 on a Soyuz Rocket.
Ken’s whimsical creations have been bringing smiles to travelers through the small town of Vining for years, and will be doing so for years to come.