Lately I’ve gotten way behind on blogging some of my roadside adventures, but in honor of Memorial Day, it seemed fitting to share this one.
In my travels west of Des Moines, I’ve often breezed by I-80 exit 86 without even knowing about the Freedom Rock. So one day when a friend and I decided to make a quick detour, we were awed by what we found.
Just a mile south of the interstate sits a nearly 60-ton boulder that artist Ray “Bubba” Sorensen II has transformed into a memorial to thank Veterans for their years of service. Every year in early May, Sorensen paints a new patriotic tribute on the boulder to honor troops just in time for Memorial Day—these photos are of the 2013 design.
We also learned that Sorensen is in the process of organizing a Freedom Rock Tour, in order to spread the message of the Freedom Rock to all 99 Iowa counties. More than a dozen counties already have their own miniature versions of Sorensen’s work with more across the state that have commissioned pieces.
Freedom Rock, 1199 Iowa 25 in Menlo, Iowa