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Boulder, Colo.-based Alfalfa’s Market has unveiled its hometown city’s newest art installment: Alfie, an 8-foot tall rooster made up of more than 3,000 pieces of farm equipment donated by area farmers.
“We consider this our gift to the community,” said Mark Retzloff, Alfalfa’s CEO and co-founder. “Boulder is known for its unique sculptures scattered around town. We collaborated with [sculptor] Robert [Bellows] to create our rooster as an iconic addition to Boulder’s eclectic sculpture collection. His use of old farm equipment from local farmers is a symbolic reminder of the hard-working farmers who grow the fabulous food we sell in our store.”
Bellows invested more than 1,400 hours in the project over 11 months. He used 1,200 plow sweeps, which became the rooster’s chest feathers. More than 100 points from spring-tooth harrows were used throughout the sculpture, and 30 3-pound cultivator blades became the wings. The back feathers were welded together from 36 industrial water heater flues, and 462 individual sickle blade guards, 800 feet of steel bar and 2,500 steel plugs were carefully connected to form Alfie’s legs, talons, crest and support for the 5,000-pound statue.
Founded as Pearl Street Market in 1979, Alfalfa’s Market was acquired by Wild Oats Markets in 1996. Fifteen years after the merger, Mark Retzloff, an original Alfalfa’s founder, Barney Feinblum, Hugo van Seenus and Jimmy Searcy resurrected the Alfalfa’s name.