It’s not the accompanying restaurant that makes this suburban landmark one of the most recognized sites in town. It’s the sheer bizarreness of it all. The Big Chicken was created as a way to bring in customers to Johnny Reb’s Chick, Chuck and Shake in 1956. The 56-foot triangular chicken has eyes and a beak that move.
The restaurant was sold and became a franchise of Kentucky Fried Chicken, but the Big Chicken remained. Storm damage and development have threatened to tear it down, but every time locals save it. Inside the restaurant is a small exhibit on the history of the Big Chicken. The Big Chicken is also used to give directions around Marietta, like “turn right at the Big Chicken,” or “two miles past the Big Chicken.”