"It used to be that the only way aquariums could get coral was by taking the real stuff," says Dave Powell, director of husbandry at California's Monterey Bay Aquarium. "Because of tighter controls and concerns about taking live coral, aquariums mostly use imitations now."
At Cabela's, an outdoor-equipment supplier in Sidney, Neb., Larson employees recently completed a 25-foot-high, 2,000-square-foot rock mountain built inside the store. Its peak is covered with ice and snow, and distinct climate changes are evident at different points on the mountain—from snow to spruce and aspen to grasslands at the bottom, where there's a stream formed by the melting snow.
"We'll try to make anything," says Taplin. "If someone wants us to build a spaceship 900 feet wide, we'll give it a try."
Oh, yes, in case you were wondering: Marilyn's legs, both right and left, are in a trendy New York City restaurant.