Will B. Rolling
*2014 Eddy Award Winner
Meet Will B. Rolling, a rider perched atop his Penny Farthing looking out over the Mississippi River and the Great River Trail. At 30′ tall he has a spectacular view and is a can’t-miss attraction in Port Byron. Erected on November 13, 2013 along the Great River Trail in Port Byron, Will B. Rolling was a gift to the people of Port Byron from former mayor Lawrence Bay and his wife Carol.
The giant fiberglass rider atop an equally giant high wheel is a replica of Ben Bikin’ in Sparta, Wis., which the city uses to help market itself as the Bicycle Capital of America. The Gay Nineties-style cyclist arrived on one flatbed-truck Thursday, and his bicycle arrived on another. A team from FAST Corp., which made the statue, raised, welded and secured it on a concrete slab along the Great River Trial during a several-hour assembly process.
It was a gift to the village from former mayor Larry Bay and his wife, Carol, who watched the whole process. Their $60,000 investment is intended to promote the riverfront, the village, cycling and good health. They changed the color scheme from Ben Bikin’s yellow trousers and red jacket to white trousers and a blue jacket (representing the water and sky), spicing it up with John Deere green for his tie and hat band.
“We wanted to create our own attraction, because this is our bike,” Larry Bay said. “It should attract a lot of visitors to Port Byron, and that’s the idea. It’s going to be a landmark.”