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A ‘disco cowboy hat’ in Sundance Square is Fort Worth’s latest selfie spot

January 30,2023

See full Dallas Morning News article by Tommy Cummings here.

It might be the most Cowtown thing in Cowtown right now. It’s a giant cowboy hat made of resin over a steel frame and covered in thousands of small mirrors.

The hat sits on a pedestal in the middle of Sundance Square in downtown Fort Worth. Sixteen feet long, about 6 feet tall and 12 feet wide, it weighs about a half-ton. It doesn’t have an official name, but a TikTok user dubbed it a “disco cowboy hat.” And it probably could be worn by the State Fair of Texas’ Big Tex, who wears a 75-gallon hat.

“It looks like some big guy lost it in a wind storm,” said Ed Kraus, chief security officer for Sundance Square.

“Someone has mentioned that it’s maybe our Fort Worth bean,” Kraus said in reference to Chicago’s Cloud Gate, the much larger mirrored sculpture by Anish Kapoor in the Windy City.

Sundance Square commissioned Alvin-based fabrication studio Smash Design to create the piece. Using a 3D model, the sculpture was fashioned into the type of hat worn by Ed Bass, Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo chairman.

“It’s a Fort Worth style ... that’s unique to the area,” said Smash Design owner Steven Ramirez, whose studio also designed a sculpture for the College Football Playoff game that TCU played in this month.

The sculpture was moved from Alvin into Sundance Square for the New Year’s Eve celebration in downtown Fort Worth. It will remain in the square until the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo concludes on Feb. 4 at Dickies Arena.

The mirrored hat has become a sensation, or at least a backdrop for selfies, Kraus said.

“It’s an Instagram thing,” he said. “Everyone has wanted a selfie with it.”

That includes the Fort Worth Police Department. When the hat was moved via forklift from a previous resting place in front of the Sundance mural, the department positioned a car under it for a recruitment tweet.

Like Chicago, Fort Worth is known as a windy city when Mayfest rolls around. Traditionally, Mayfest attracts strong winds during its downtown runs.

“It’s pretty heavy, so it’s not blowing away,” Kraus said of the hat.

Location Mentioned: Sundance Square Plaza