MNN Galleries

10 water towers that look good enough to eat

By: Matt Hickman on March 26, 2015, 10:10 a.m.
Water towers

Photo: JD Hancock/flickr (watermelon); Bruce Tuten/flickr (Peachoid); uff-da/flickr (corn)

1 of 12

Roadside grazing

If you’ve driven through small town America, you’ve probably noticed that the landscape is littered with bulbous concrete-and-steel structures rising from the Earth like Paul Bunyan-sized golf balls on their tees.

These municipal water towers — traditionally used to store a town’s emergency water supply — are largely ignored and unappreciated, painted a drab pale blue and stating not much besides the town’s name. But some scream for attention as fully realized works of novelty architecture.

In communities with agriculture-driven economies, these otherwise humdrum elevated reservoirs are done up to look like produce and other types of food or drink: an ear of corn, a glass of milk, a can of fruit cocktail. We’ve rounded up 10 notable food-shaped water towers in the U.S., many historical and functional. Among them are almost enough comestibles to create a meal, condiments and dessert included. (Text: Matt Hickman)