There’s a really big roadrunner in Texas. His name is Paisano Pete, and he wants to welcome you to the town of Fort Stockton (he is their mascot, after all). Paisano Pete, one of the many off-beat roadside attractions that make road trips so great, has been a fixture in this West Texas town since 1980.
Measuring 11 feet tall and 22 feet long, Pete was the idea of then-mayor Gene Cummings, who thought that the statute would be right at home in the community—the bird is, after all, a common sight in the area, and who wouldn’t love being the home to (what was then) the world’s largest roadrunner.
Purchased from a Wisconsin company for $6250, the fiberglass statue was perched in the center of town at the corner of Main Street and Dickinson Boulevard. The city then held a “Name the Roadrunner” contest offering $50 to the best suggestion, and after fielding a number of suggestions, Paisano Pete was the winner. Unfortunately, in 1993, Pete lost his world’s largest title to an enormous statue in Las Cruces, New Mexico, but this hasn’t dimmed his appeal, nor stopped him from becoming Fort Stockton’s most photographed resident.
Know Before You Go
Pete is located at a busy intersection, so it's best to park at the Visitor's Center across the street if you want to stop to take a picture.
- Roadside Giants by Brian and Sara Butko