LISTEN LIVE KPR - On Air: Listen Live to classical, jazz and NPR news Schedule LATEST
KPR 2 - On Air: Listen live to KPR's all talk-radio service, KPR2 Recordings

Share this page              

Name That Town! - August 15, 2014

Q: During the third weekend in August, this community in north-central Kansas holds a “Twine-a-thon.” That’s where residents celebrate the city’s claim to fame - having the world’s largest ball of twine. Name the Kansas town that kicks off its “Twine-a-thon” tonight.

Twine Flickr Nan-LTA close-up of the world's largest ball of sisal twine that resides in Cawker City, Kan. (Flickr Photo by Nan LT)


A: Cawker City (in Mitchell County)


TwineBall Flickr_Dave-77459The world's largest ball of twine in Cawker City, Kan. (Flickr Photo by Dave 77459)

Some may chuckle, but there’s a spirited competition between several towns that all claim to have the “world’s largest ball of twine.” It’s a highly-debated topic. KPR’s research indicates that Cawker City, Kan., wins the debate – at least, if we’re talking about the world's largest ball of sisal twine. A farmer named Frank Stoeber started winding twine into a ball on Christmas Eve, 1953. Soon, area farmers started bringing him their own twine to add to it. One piece of twine led to another and before long, it was pretty big. In 1961, the ball was moved to town and placed under a shelter so everyone could see it. Mr. Stoeber died in 1974 but the community and visitors still add to the Ball of Twine nearly every day and during the annual "Twine-a-thon" held the third weekend in August. At last check, the constantly-growing ball weighed more than 19,943 pounds and – if it was unwound – it would stretch more than 1,527 miles! Not bad for a town with less than 500 people!

Fun Factoid: Darwin, Minn., claims to have the World's Largest Ball of Sisal Twine wound by one man.

Source: Linda Clover, Cawker City resident and caretaker of the twine ball.

Kansas Travel - Ball of Twine

Kansas Sampler - 8 Wonders of Kansas

Tower Frequencies

91.5 FM KANU Lawrence, Topeka, Kansas City
96.1 FM K241AR Lawrence (KPR2)
89.7 FM KANH Emporia
99.5 FM K258BT Manhattan
97.9 FM K250AY Manhattan (KPR2)
91.3 FM  KANV Junction City, Olsburg
89.9 FM K210CR Atchison
90.3 FM KANQ Chanute

See the Coverage Map for more details

Contact Us

Kansas Public Radio
1120 West 11th Street
Lawrence, KS 66044
Download Map
785-864-4530 (Main Line)
888-577-5268 (Toll Free)