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Arizona Dairy Queen on the hunt for missing red spoon statue

This undated image provided by Raman and Puja Kalra shows their Dairy Queen franchise restaurant in Phoenix with 15-foot-tall red spoon. The owners remain perplexed — and slightly amused — as to why someone would steal the giant red spoon that adorned their restaurant. (Raman and Puja Kalra via The AP)

PHOENIX (AP) — The owners of a Dairy Queen in Phoenix remain perplexed — and slightly amused — as to why someone would steal the giant red spoon that adorned their restaurant.

“We were kind of upset but then more puzzled,” Puja Kalra said Wednesday. “What are they going to do with a spoon?”

She and her husband, Raman Kalra, say the spoon-snatching occurred sometime between late Friday and early Saturday. The 15-foot-tall (4.5 meter) spoon stood against the side of the building with the handle nestled in an opening of a roof parapet. Their surveillance camera caught two people appearing to manipulate the screws that held the spoon to a base and then taking off on a “small motorbike.”

“They were so precise about it like they had done it before,” Raman Kalra said. “They just wiggled their way through and made sure the spoon was not damaged.”

The couple reported the theft to Phoenix police.

Sgt. Brian Bower confirmed officers were called and are investigating. No suspects have been identified.

Getting another spoon made, delivered and then installed would cost over $7,000, Raman Kalra said.

Dairy Queen is known for doling out plastic red spoons with their soft serve Blizzards.

The Kalras, who are Indian immigrants, moved to Phoenix from Minnesota in 2007 and decided to go into business operating a Dairy Queen. They now own 34 franchise locations. This Phoenix one is the only Arizona Dairy Queen with the towering red spoon.

With the spoon big enough to hold a small child, it was a popular photo spot.

“It looks empty and incomplete without that spoon,” Puja Kalra said. “People liked to take selfies and put it on Instagram.”

Meanwhile, they're trying some creative strategies to spread the word about the spoon swipe. Staff at the Phoenix location will start wearing “Where's my spoon?” T-shirts with a red spoon and the DQ logo. They've also had flyers to post at various branches around metro Phoenix. The reward? One Blizzard treat from every flavor of the summer menu.

In all seriousness, the couple would love to have the red spoon suddenly be found.

“I appeal to the person. This spoon is too big to eat anything,” Raman Kalra said. “We want you to bring it back. We will not ask any questions.”

Terry Tang, The Associated Press

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