Tampa artist collective Crab Devil will preserve Fun-Lan's iconic entrance sign

The sign will move to Nebraska Avenue and be part of Crab Devil's "Peninsularium" immersive art attraction.

click to enlarge Crab Devil collective members examine Fun-Lan's front entrance sign as dismantling begins. - JUSTIN GARCIA
Justin Garcia
Crab Devil collective members examine Fun-Lan's front entrance sign as dismantling begins.

This morning, members of the Crab Devil art collective showed up to Tampa's recently-shuttered Fun-Lan Drive-In and Swap Shop to take on the daunting task of preserving its iconic front entrance sign.

They brought trucks full of tools and a flatbed trailer and began dismantling and inspecting the sign. Getting it to come apart and move safely is easier said than done.

Dave Kibby told Creative Loafing Tampa Bay that he's never seen anything like the task at hand, and several other workers were trying to figure out how to best take apart and move the sign to Crab Devil's location at 3800 N Nebraska Ave. in Ybor Heights.
click to enlarge Crab Devil preservationists work to dismantle and move the Fun-Lan sign. - JUSTIN GARCIA
Justin Garcia
Crab Devil preservationists work to dismantle and move the Fun-Lan sign.
The body of the sign was there since the beginning of Fun-Lan and is 71-years-old, Fun-Lan manager Jerry Corgnati told CL. Since then, there have been some additions like neon lighting and the digital sign that projected Fun-Lan's farewell message, "Merry Christmas & Happy New Year we will miss you..."

Corgnati told CL contributor Kelly Benjamin—who helped arrange the preservation of the sign—that Crab Devil should take it for free in order to avoid its destruction.

The combination of old parts with added electrical components  present a challenge to the Crab Devil workers, but they're hoping to get the entire project done by today, if not, by tomorrow.

Once the sign makes it back to Crab Devil's compound, future plans may include propping the sign up high on a shipping container above Crab Devil's "Peninsularium" immersive art attraction so it can be seen from Nebraska Avenue, highlighting the project's  goal of being, "Cooler than a museum, smarter than a theme park, weirder than a carnival."
Location Details

Crab Devil

3800 N Nebraska Ave., Tampa Tampa

1 article
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About The Author

Justin Garcia

Justin Garcia previously wrote for the USA Today Network, The Economic Hardship Reporting Project, Scalawag Magazine, and various other news outlets. When he's not writing, Justin likes to make music, read, play basketball and spend time with loved ones. 

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