April 1, Fanning, MO: On April 1, 2008 two cranes lifted the World’s Largest Rocking Chair onto the rockers that welder Joe Medwick had already put in place. Medwick then welded the chair onto the rockers. Channel 5’s Heidi Glaus and her videographer were on hand to film the rocker raising and to interview owners Dan and Carolyn Sanazaro and their kids. When Glaus called Carolyn early that morning to say that they would be coming to Fanning to film the rocker raising, Carolyn thought it was some of her friends playing an April Fool’s Joke on her.
You can read about it in the Cuba Free Press article “Channel 5 films rocker raising.” Or you can see a snippet of video here. Another article “Giant Rocker constructed at Fanning” tells how three men, Dan Sanazaro, John Bland, and Joe Medwick teamed up to produce the rocker.
In 2009, the Guinness organization officially designated the rocker as the World’s Largest Rocking chair.” It was in preparation for the Guinness application that Medwick cut the welds to the rocker so that it could be filmed rocking for the application process. The official dimensions are 42’1″ tall, 20’3″ wide, and 27,500 lbs.
UPDATE: The Guinness Organization now features the Fanning Rocker in its hardback version of its records.
In the two years since the Rocker was lifted into place next to the Fanning US 66 Outpost General Store as a roudside attraction to bring in customers, a Rt. 66 mural by John Bland has been added to the outside of the building, the Archery Range is a thriving business, as is the Taxidermy Center. Travelers stop for a photo and enjoy everything that the store has to offer.
When Viva Cuba members meet groups for mural tours, a stop of the rocker is often a requested part of the itinerary.
The Rocker has taken its place in community events.
After a number of years having the Picture on the Rocker day in August, insurance concerns caused them to cease this popular practice in 2015.. People were lifted to the rocker seat in ducally in groups and could take photos.
In September, archers gather for the Iron Buck Archery Tournament.
In the spring, usually in March, it is the destination JOG,inc.’s 4-mile Route 66 Race to the Rocker. In 2010, 433 racers ran to the Rocker for the annual group photo. In 2012, the race takes place on Saturday, March 31, to raise money for local charities. Check the Race to the Rocker website for details.
Local students study the rocker during Missouri History Days, and teachers report the rocker is a popular topic for discussion.
The Fanning Community and Cuba, MO, just 4-miles from the rocker, are proud of the rocker’s place in local history. Citizens love showing off the rocker and the well-run businesses next to it. Danny and Carolyn Sanazaro have had a lot of fun and worked hard at their business.
Viva Cuba salutes their work and wishes the Guinness World’s Largest Rocking Chair a happy 2nd birthday.
The latest award given to the Rocker:
After having its record as the World’s Largest eclipsed by a rocker in Casey, Illinois, as part of a expansion on the grounds of the Fanning General Store, the rocker was painted red, with a record of its past designation painted on a plaque. The rocker continues to be a unique Route 66 attraction and a center of community events, such as the Route 66 Race to the Red Rocker in March when 100s race 4-miles from historic Cuba to the rocker to raise money for community non-profits.
To contact the Sanazaros at the Fanning US 66 Outpost General Store and check hours call 573-885-1474, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the website at www.fanning66outpost.com. Visit their website for updated event information.