sShe was his first statue, but not his last. A second became a cow-girl.
She stands on a 10-foot fiberglass rock in a field behind the
lagoon, looking out over a herd of longhorn steers. A third one lies
in the grass behind Graham’s house, waiting to be painted.
“She will be an Indian girl,” he says. “She’ll stand in the back
Indians and rearing horses.”
He’s planning to create a fourth, a black woman who will have
two black panthers with her.
The new statues might attract more Uniroyal Gal spotters, but
that’s not why Graham is creating them. They will be among the
attractions for Grahamland, the amusement park he intends to
create on his property.
“I’m going to put animals on motorized bases,” he says.
“When the motor comes on it’ll spin the animals. You’ll
be able to ride a horse, a bull, an ox, a rooster, a bear —
any animal that’s here you’ll be able to ride. There’ll be
mini-golf over here on the right. I’ll have the heads with
the holes in their mouth so you’ll be able to putt the ball
into the mouth of the animals.
Boo-Boo Bear will be at the
10th hole. If you make a
hole-in-one you’ll get
a T-shirt that says,
‘I made a Boo-Boo at
His dream includes a seafood restaurant with a replica of the Cape
Hatteras Lighthouse on the roof, talking cars, and flying horses.
It seems like a grandiose undertaking, but spend a few minutes
talking with Graham and it’s easy to catch his vision. Especially
when you look around and see what he’s already created. There are
fiberglass animals everywhere — flamingos, horses, chickens, cows,
a pair of seahorses pulling a wagon.
“This is all God,” he says. “God created this. God is making all
this happen. I’m only the shepherd.”
The idea for the amusement park can be
traced back to a burglary in 1996.
“We had a break-in in the house,”
Graham says. “I said, ‘I’m going to
put something outside the road that’s
going to start recording people and
the lights will come on when they
break the beam.’”
Graham made a couple of 8-foot
metal lighthouses with lights on
“We plugged them in and bam, everybody
said, ‘Where’d you get the lighthouses?’” he says. “I
said, ‘I made them.’ Then people started order-ing
them. I started selling a few here and there
but it wasn’t a big, booming business.”
WBM august 2017