|by Kate Appleton||Landmarks and Monuments, State Parks, Texas, Houston||1|
It's taken sculptor David Adickes six years to carve 18-to-20-foot busts of all the U.S. presidents. They're destined for the new Presidential Park and Gardens at WaterLights, just south of Houston, and were inspired by a visit Adickes made to Mount Rushmore—it left him wishing to get closer to the imposing figures.
The park, which includes interactive features on American history, has room to accommodate each successive president through the next century. It doesn't officially open until September 2009 ($1, free for kids under 12), but six presidential busts—chosen by voters in an online poll—are already on display: Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Kennedy, and Houston native George H.W. Bush. Drivers on Highway 288 South get a good view.
Crowd-pleaser Barack Obama will soon join their ranks, both as president and park attraction. Adickes is putting the final touches on the Obama statue to be unveiled on February 16, President's Day, naturally.
See footage of the initial park installation below in the YouTube video "March of the President Heads":