Western’s Upper Great Plains Region gets in the spirit in their local community and wins top honors. Participating in the 19th annual Great
Scarecrow Festival, the Huron employees associations’ “Watts Up!” cow–a metal cow made out of old farm parts and other junk–competed against 33 other scarecrows taking the humorous scarecrow commercial/organization award and earning the traveling trophy.
Watts Up is a metal cow constructed from a fuel barrel welded to an old truck frame with a front and rear axle from an old truck. The whole idea was to make it from used junk; and, if it were farm-related, that was even better. The head is an old cream can with spray can lids for eyes and tricycle horns for ears/horns. The head fastened to a pipe, goes through the fuel barrel, that fastened to a rope tail. A steel fence post from the rear axle attaches to the pipe inside. As the rear wheels turn, the pipe moves up and down to make the head and tail sway back and forth. Also fastened to the pipe, two pieces of aluminum satellite dish sit above the fuel barrel. They swing up and down when the wheels move.
In the past, Watts Up appeared in the scarecrow contest for two consecutive years and won first prize for the kids’ club class both years. She also made an appearance in a Minnesota County Fair, claiming first prize for rural art, and then went into retirement in a used machinery pasture behind some farm buildings.
Then on Oct. 2, an enthusiastic visit from Lisa Wolf, Western’s PC Support Specialist in Huron, SD, inspired Watts Up to come out of retirement and join the festivities at the Scarecrow Festival. Although Watts Up had ‘aged’ a little, she was back in prime condition by 11 p.m., that night and made it to the contest.
“Given enough interest, it’s just possible that Watts Up will enter the age of automation and make another appearance next year, complete with a motor to make her head, tail and wings move; maybe some lights; and who knows what else. Could there be a calf in her future?” said Jack Winter, electrical engineer in Huron.