Burlington's Flying Monkeys
May 18, 2013 7:40 PM   Subscribe

Most people visit the city of Burlington, Vermont, for the pleasant waterfront of Lake Champlain, the quirky shops and restaurants on Church Street, and the various cultural benefits that come with being a university town. Those are all the right reasons. I, on the other hand, went to Burlington for the flying monkeys...

Monkeys With Wings has the full history of Burlington's flying monkeys, which first appeared as whimsical sculptures made by sculptor Steve Larrabee for the Emerald City (of Oz) Waterbeds store (warning: autoplaying audio). The store closed, and the monkeys moved and multiplied over the years, with six flying monkeys now residing in Burlington.
posted by filthy light thief (12 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
I like flying monkeys.

I would like to have flying monkeys.

Burlington just went up quite a few points in my estimation.
(Actually, I never estimated Burlington, never thought about it much before, but my estimation is definitely on an upward trend. Yeah, flying monkeys.)
posted by BlueHorse at 8:38 PM on May 18, 2013 [1 favorite]

Emerald City Waterbeds?

Oh, now I'm flashing back to the ads playing on my parents' shoddy alarm clock that was permanently stuck on Oldies 620, WVMT.
posted by Earthtopus at 8:38 PM on May 18, 2013

Okay, I was gonna talk about Pizza Putt, but I think this is cooler than Pizza Putt.
posted by The Confessor at 8:56 PM on May 18, 2013 [1 favorite]

Here are some closer pictures of them.

I wonder how they're decorated for Christmas.

It would be fun to have a team of them drawing Santa's sleigh.
posted by surplus at 5:23 AM on May 19, 2013

This guy would probably go ape if he visited the Summer Palace in Beijing. No monkeys, AFAIK, but herds of other beasts.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:04 AM on May 19, 2013

This guy would probably go ape if he visited the Summer Palace in Beijing. No monkeys, AFAIK, but herds of other beasts.

That pictures stops just before the best part, the man riding a chicken. okay..okay...it's supposed to be a guy on a phoenix, but it always looks like a chicken to me.
posted by msbrauer at 7:30 AM on May 19, 2013 [1 favorite]

I don't know, The Confessor. Do these monkeys let you golf ON THE MOON!?!?!?
posted by maryr at 3:44 PM on May 19, 2013

Wow, didn't expect to see my hometown on the front page today. Anyway, this is hilariously accurate:

Verbatim and in toto, [the plaque on One Main] goes: “The ‘flying monkeys’ above the clock symbolize the link between Burlington’s proud past and its bold future—with a dash of creativity and fun!” Besides seeming like it was written by a Highlights for Children writer, the statement reaches to the point of dislocated shoulder bones for some generically acceptable meaning. As if it’s not okay to have flying monkeys just for the sake of having flying monkeys. Sheesh.

(And from the first link, those damn whale tails always make me feel like I'm coming home, even though I haven't lived there for over a decade.)
posted by en forme de poire at 3:57 PM on May 19, 2013

Emerald City used to be the only head shop in town, too: Your one-stop shop for waterbeds, bongs, and black light posters! The town's rotten with them now (there must be at least 10), and none of them have 1/2 the charm that Emerald City did back in the day.
posted by brand-gnu at 6:39 AM on May 20, 2013

I dunno, maybe I just don't drive that Tafts Corners to Dorset Street stretch much when I'm home in Chittenden County, but I don't find the whale tails to be nearly as amazing as everybody else does. I mean, the first time I saw them it was sort of "Oh, wow, huh." and then I was pretty much over it.

However, the Tafts Corners to Richmond stretch, which I also don't really drive that often, is GORGEOUS and may be one of my favorite stretches of road. Who knew you could still make Williston look pretty?
posted by maryr at 8:15 AM on May 20, 2013 [1 favorite]

PS: My absolute favorite stretch of road? The pracitcally useless Inn at Essex to 117 stretch of the Circ. So much fun to drive at night with the windows down and the music up and as fast as you can.
posted by maryr at 8:16 AM on May 20, 2013

The monkeys aren't really obvious. I first noticed them when walking to the Main Street Landing, to see my son in his senior class play, and I just thought, "Oh yeah, there are the monkeys."

They — along with the whale tails out by the highway — seem pretty routine for Burlington. But one thing in town did surprise me: the Earth Clock, about a mile and a half south of the monkeys.
posted by LeLiLo at 1:34 PM on May 20, 2013 [1 favorite]

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