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For those who were around in the late 50s and 60s, The Great Western Walk-O-Wonders. We received these from Diane Westlake Poston '58.

We don't know who originally took the pictures, but they will bring back some memories for those who saw it up-close-and-in-person.

A sky-view picture of the Great Western parking lot showing the Walk-o-Wonders in the center.

Per information found on the Internet when the project was opened: ". . . Proudly presents “The Walk of Wonders” Don M. Casto and Don M. Casto, Jr., Developers, who pioneered the development of shopping centers in America, and Mr. Joe Skilken, Associate, one of the nation’s leading General Contractors, are responsible for the beautiful replicas of the “Wonders of the Modern World”, which are reproduced here at Great Western Shoppers Mart.
Don M. Casto has had the opportunity to visit the Seven Wonders during his worldwide travels and as early as 1953, conceived the idea to bring this magnificent cultural display of the “Wonders of the Modern World” to people everywhere and to serve as an educational exhibit for all school children."
"Exhibit built in the late 1950s
Size of exhibit - 700’ x 60’
Construction cost - $165,000-$250,000"


The bronze plaque detailed the project.
As much as we can make out says:
Showing the wonders of the modern world
in exact replica in miniature has been
created here. It is dedicated to the school
children and to you the people for your
enjoyment and education by
Great Western Shoppers Mart, Inc.
Don M. Casto, President
Joe Skilken, Vice President
Don M. Casto, Jr., Vice President

 

Taj Mahal, Agra, India
(information from the Internet)

Don M. Casto preferred to build the” Walk-O-Wonders” in Columbus, Ohio.

When the land for the Great Western Shoppers Mart was acquired, the Castos and Mr. Skilken designed the Shopping Center so the “Walk-O-Wonders” would form a central motif of the huge center.

The “Walk-O-Wonders” connects the north and south wing of the Center and is 700 feet long and 60 feet wide.

Mr. Joe Skilken was in direct charge of construction and engineering for the “Walk-O-Wonders”. The project had to be built without blueprints, since there were no plans in existence for the development of this character.

The thousands of features going into this project as is was being built, were determined only after long hours of study and research by the entire staff. Mr. Ivan E. Pusecker, noted artist and designer, who is known nationally, was placed in charge of construction. He is the originator of the famous “Smiling Christ” painting."
Leaning Tower of Pisa, Pisa, Italy
(information from the Internet)

"Mr. Pusecker made several trips to the Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls and Carlsbad Caverns. He also did a tremendous amount of research for the type and color of the various stone and material used in the construction of each and every Wonder.

Mr. Pusecker commissioned Mr. Louis Mori, sculptor and mold maker, who was born in Barga, Italy, and who has a renowned reputation in sculpturing and mold making, to assist him in the completion of the “Walk-O-Wonders”.

Landscaping for the beautiful gardens was designed by Charles M. Frank, Landscape Architect.

The winning combination of Don M. Casto, Sr., Don M. Casto, Jr., Joe Skilken, Ivan Pusecker, his assistant, Louis Mori, Charles M. Frank, and the many craftsmen and tradesmen finally produced the Wonders you are about to behold.
THE WALK-O-WONDERS"

Grand Canyon, Arizona
(information from the Internet)





Grand Canyon – 40’ long x 8’ deep

Ivan E. Pusecker, noted artist and designer, oversaw construction of exhibit.

He commissioned Louis Mori, an Italian sculptor and mold maker, to help complete exhibit.















Niagara Falls, New York
(information from the Internet)
(one of the Niagara Falls pictures was included in the summer Alumni Occident)

"Landscape architect was Charles M. Frank. Thousands of children visited the exhibit on school field trips. Also, popular stop for tour bus groups. Exhibit deteriorated by late 1960’s."

"Pranksters would regularly put soap powder in Niagara Falls display.

In 1985, a portion of the parking lot collapsed into the basin of the Niagara Falls exhibit. Scale models of tiny railings and houses were found by maintenance worker."


Eiffel Tower, Paris, France
(information from the Internet)

"Eiffel Tower – 22’ high"

"(the site had) exorbitant maintenance costs."

"(the) Eiffel Tower, the last remaining exhibit, was moved to one of the owner’s properties in 1979."


Pyramid of Cheops and Sphinx, Egypt

Trevi Fountain, Rome, Italy (“Three Coins in the Fountain”)

Also included in the display but not pictured -
Carlsbad Caverns, Carlsbad, New Mexico, and
The Parthenon, Acropolis, Greece
 
 
 
   
 

 
 
   
 
 
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