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Aug 05

26 feet of Marilyn Monroe

Palm Springs California

Greeted by Marilyn

On a recent trip to Palm Springs, Red and I were greeted by a 26 foot tall, 34,000 pound statue of Marilyn Monroe. Her appearance triggered an ear-to-ear grin, and we did a double-take as she flashed us her knickers.  We drove past the “Forever Marilyn” Statue from it’s new home at the corner of Palm Canyon Drive and Tahquitz Canyon Way, but went back the next morning, to take a closer look.

Palm Springs California

50th Anniversary of Marilyn Monroe’s Death

2012 is the 50th Anniversary of her death, so it’s fitting that this statue was moved from it’s original Chicago location, to the heart of Palm Springs.  Steward Johnson (the 80 year old Johnson & Johnson heir) recreated the iconic image from the classic scene from the 1955’s “The Seven Year Itch” .

Windy Cities

In the film, Marilyn’s skirt was blown up by the wind from a subway grate. But the scene is just as plausible for the statue’s original home, Chicago “the windy city, and her new temporary home of Palm Springs.

As iconic as Marilyn is to Hollywood Glamour, Wind Turbines are the iconic images for Palm Springs. Hundreds of them line the freeway and highway 111 leading into town.

Palm Springs Wind Turbines California

I can’t think of a better location for the “Forever Marilyn” statue during this anniversary year. Especially given Marilyn’s auspicious connection with Palm Springs.

Marilyn Discovered in Palm Springs

In 1949, Marilyn Monroe was “discovered” by Johnny Hyde, from the William Morris Talent Agency, at the Charlie Farrell Racquet Club in Palm Springs. At the time, she was poolside, having her photos taken by Bruno Bernard.

Bernard of Hollywood 1949

Even though the swimsuit design hasn’t stood the test of time, the wedge platforms are still on-trend today.

Palm Springs “Hollywood’s Playground”

In the 1920’s, Palm Springs started to become the quick jaunt getaway for Hollywood stars.

In the old Hollywood system, Actors under contract had to be available back on Set “within 2 hours”, for photo and film shoots.  As Palm Springs is only 120 miles away from Los Angeles, it hugged the edge of this 2-hour limit and became the playground for the rich and famous.  Palm Springs offered an “anything goes” aura of freedom, away from the prying eyes of the Hollywood Studio system, hell bent on projecting squeaky-clean reputations of their stars.

Palm Springs California

Experience a slice of Marilyn Glamour

If you’re heading to Palm Springs, why not take advantage of some of the activities organized by the Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism:

Marilyn’s Star: Palm Canyon Drive
Similar to the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Palm Springs Walk of Stars has nearly 350 Golden Palm Stars embedded in the sidewalks throughout downtown Palm Springs. Marilyn Monroe’s star is located at 101 S. Palm Canyon Drive, adjacent to the “Forever Marilyn” sculpture.

Marilyn’s House: Take a Celebrity Tour
Marilyn Monroe lived in a’50s bungalow-style house in the Las Palmas neighborhood.  During a celebrity tour, visitors will hear the stories and secrets of the stars and see Marilyn’s home along with many other celebrity homes including the Elvis Honeymoon House, Elizabeth Taylor’s and Frank Sinatra’s homes.

 

 

© 1949 photo of Marilyn by Bernard of Hollywood, all other photo’s Roving Jay

 

 

 

12 comments

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  1. Michelle

    Marilyn was a true icon. She had something special, and that’s why her reputation as an icon is still standing tall today. Great Statue – although it does look like she has cellulite on her arms!

  2. Roving Jay

    Hi Michelle … maybe her arms look a bit blobby – but her legs look great! 🙂
    Roving Jay recently posted..Video of a peaceful morning in GümüşlükMy Profile

  3. Kadedra

    Like i love her soo much!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and her and Betty Boop look soo much alike i mean just soo much alike that’s who i thought Betty Boop was based on but i guess not!!!!!!!!

  4. Nadine

    Ah, that’s looks so cool! She was truly amazing 🙂

  5. Pascale

    Marilyn was bigger than life, so a massive statue suits her just fine. She still is an icon, though she’d probably never imagined getting an introduction like yours. 🙂
    “and we did a double-take as she flashed us her knickers”

  6. Ellis

    Interesting post on Marilyn Monroe. Quite some facts I did not know.

  7. Sheila

    This is great. I have always wondered if it ever crossed their minds (to celebrities) that even years after their departure we would still be talking about them. Would also love to go to one of the celebrities tour.

  8. Jewels

    Marilyn was truly an icon and classic beauty. I learned a lot about her from this article.
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  9. Nastja Novak

    Ah Marilyn is amazing. I always try to do the same pose in front of Moulin Rouge in Paris, or anywhere were wind blows from under 😀 Hehe

  10. Amanda @ The Travelling Blizzards

    A giant Marilyn Monroe statue would be neat to see!
    I’ve been a couple places that have wind farms, and I always find them so neat to watch!

  11. Rosie Fluskey

    I knew nothing about Palm Springs before but (genuinely) a giant Marilyn has just put it on my list. That is one huge dose of Americana! I also never knew about the two hour rule, that is so intense!!!

  12. Kyntra Strickland

    I absolutely love Marilyn! I never knew she was discovered in Palm Springs. Thank you for sharing this great information! I would love to see her house.

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