Submitted by Connie April 17th, 2010
Certifikitsch Winner

Yes, right here in North Ft. Myers, Florida is the world famous, WORLD’S LARGEST Shell Factory! (Lame local joke: “AH! So THAT’S where shells are made!”)

I was thrilled when they finally painted the giant (cement) conch shell, and quite realistically, I might add. But, sadly, it no longer rotates.


  1. Allee Willis

    Wow, wow, wow! That big honking cement conch shell could certainly be interpreted many ways. I hope it actually looks like a shell once you get close to it because from this distance it’s somewhere between a female body part and a spewing dinosaur head.

    I also love how the two arrows on the almost-McDonald’s-golden-arches-but-not-really really clunk up the design. Excellent that one of them is pointing to fishbones.

    Also like that the subway sign is attached to the shell factory sign when it seems like there’s plenty of space to mount it self standing and not have the dinosaur look like it’s poised to swallow a sub. Though I always like to be eating a sub when I’m looking for my shells.

    With this said, I’m obsessed with shells and would kill to go to this place. I hauled tons and tons of sand into my backyard about 20 years ago so I have my own private beach (with no decent sized body of water around for at least 20 miles). I collect shells whenever I see them to stock my beach.

    I have a feeling that North Ft. Myers is a kitsch fantasy of architecture and design. More shots please!

  2. Connie

    You have your own (person-made) private BEACH????
    I am so jealous.
    Geeze, Allee, if I can sneak a camera INSIDE The Shell Factory, I could take pictures that would probably give you a heart attack.
    This is such a big tourist trap that the Red Sox Spring Training Bus is spotted here on occasion. (Yes! That really IS Jason Veritek buying a “Baby Shark in Formaldehyde” for one of his kids!)

    • Allee Willis

      Yes, sneak that camera in! I always get away with taking shots like that because I tell them I’m taking photos so I can show someone the merchandise so they can tell me what they want to buy.

      I’m sure I would pass out inside there but the shells are probably expensive, right? I haven’t found a good bargain on shells in ages.

      And YES, a private beach – though it’s shrunk in recent years because I had to build a little office/ pool house outside.

  3. denny

    Connie! My Mother would have had a fit oif she had seen this when we drove through heading to Sanibel. I don’t know if my Moms shell collection has been cleared here yet but it will give you an idea where I get my love of collecting. Oh she’ll die when I tell her about this. I love the Conch!
    @ Allee – Shells can be VERY costly. My mom is over the top with her collecting.

  4. shirlie williams

    Denny I thought of your mum when I saw this……I want to go , Connie, sneak some pictures from the inside .

  5. Connie

    OK, OK! Pictures.
    But my camera is way bigger than 007’s, so if I get bounced, or worse, arrested, you guys will post my bail, right?
    Yeah, right.
    Denny: Please, DON’T TELL YOUR MOM about this place! Tourist prices, etc., etc.
    Give me your address, I’ll MAIL you some shells for her instead.
    Think what a hero you’ll be!
    P.S: Big article yesterday in the local Lee (County) NewsPress about folks being fined for taking live shells off the beaches in Sanibel.
    Big no-no.