Saturday, June 24, 2017

Good Timin' It Here Last Weekend-- Part 2: Great Music, Boats, Bars, Band, Deluge, a Cubs Jersey and a Snow Shovel

JUNE 17, SATURDAY

Saturday Morning Flashback on WXRT was on 1968 for four hours.  Makes me smile.

It took me two tries, but I finally got the boat back in the driveway.  Mike, my mechanic, wasn't at his place when I first went to get the boat.  I did stop at a new place that recently opened on Grasslake Road called Bon Voyage and had a really good omelet.  For many years it was Skanda House, but had been closed for around four years.

Came home and then went back and successfully picked up the boat.  This is when Mike asked if I knew that I had a snow shovel  in the back of the boat.  Of course, Mike.  With how fast Chicago area weather can change, you just never  know.  Well, actually, I was using it to help prop up the mooring cover to keep water from accumulating during our really rainy May.

We went to Fox Lake's Lake Front Park off US-12 by Beer Can bridge to see the New Invaders play all that great 1960s music, especially the British Invasion (hence the name).  Great show and good crowd, but then the deluge came.  Fortunately we left as the first rain drops fell and were at the Legion across Nippersink Lake when it really started storming.  Had our cocktails and stayed dry.

JUNE 18, SUNDAY

Paul McCartney's 75th birthday, overshooting 64 by 11 years now.  Featured on both Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots on WDRV and Terri Hemmert's Breakfast With the Beatles show on WXRT.  Then WDRV played all the Beatles songs from A to Z.

We went over to Hickory Lodge in McCullum Lake for their pizza and beer special, but their pizza oven was broken so settled for some other good food.  The Cubs game was on and watched it.  Shortly before we were going to leave, the bartender asked if we were going to be there at the end of the game.  We said no.

We then found out that if the Cubs win (and they were way ahead), anyone who was there by the fifth inning would be entered to win a Kris Bryant jersey,  Since there were only two others there at the time we decided to stick around.  With two tickets, we won.  But the jersey was too big for Liz and this White Sox fan "inherited it."

I sure heard about it from my Sox friends when we got over to Sunnyside.  But, I pointed out to them that I WAS wearing my Sox hat, to go along with that Cubs jersey.

Well, A Fun Weekend, Even With the Jersey.  --RoadDog



Friday, June 23, 2017

Good-Timin' It Here Last Weekend-- Part 1: Bar-Hoppin' 'N Fish Fryin'

Again, people often ask us why, if we are retired like we are, why we don't go on vacations often during the summer.  Well, we sure have a lot to do around here.

THURSDAY, JUNE 15

Took the boat key and plug over to Mike.  We always forget to put them in when we bring them in to summerize the boat.  It's a tradition.  And, no plug = boat sinks.  I bought flowers at Ace and Menard's in Antioch.

Did some yardwork and went to Half-Times to check out their newly opened addition (and enjoy the $1 pints).  Met a couple from where I used to deejay back in 1983, Neptune's Cove on Fox Lake  (I wrote about them in my Down Da Road I Go Blog last week.)

Closed up the day at Sunnyside.

FRIDAY, JUNE 16

More yardwork and we went to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, a big tourist town about 20 miles away from us.  We had the delicious fish fry at Popeye's on Geneva Lake with that great (but semi-blocked during the summer by the outside umbrellas) view.

We then stopped at Donovan's Reef in Twin Lakes, Wis., for happy hour (all drinks half price) and then went to The Grove in Spring Grove, Illinois and ran into old friends, Bob and Tracy, and talked with them inside and went outside to watch the entertainer on an absolutely perfect night.

Eating and Drinking.  --RoadDog

Thursday, June 22, 2017

N.C. January 2017-- Part 14: We Finish the Condo and Missile Launch Pad

JANUARY 15, SUNDAY

Another colorful sunrise.  I even watched David Jeremiah on TV delivering his sermon, something that Mom watched religiously every Sunday morning before she went to Sunday School and church.

Drove over to the condo, but they were still asleep.  Bought a copy of one of my favorite newspapers, the Wilmington Star-News at the post office, the only place at Topsail beach you can buy it during the winter months.  Like I said, Topsail Beach is ultra dead during the winter.  (Almost like the time we spent an extra three days out on Put-In-Bay on South Bass Island in Lake Erie, you could go batty here in the winter.)

We went to the condo and finished clearing out everything and loaded the trailer which Julie and Ed were going to take stuff back to Savannah and they left.  We had quite a pile of junk sitting out by the road as well.

I went back to the motel and sat out on the patio which was the launching pad for the U.S. missile program which took place on Topsail Island after World War II.  Enjoyed the view  on a very pleasant day in January and read the paper which had quite a few pictures of the events out at Fort Fisher yesterday.  Boy, I sure wish I had been able to go.

--RoadDog

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Always A Good Time On the Chain of Lakes-- Part 2: Big Party Thursdays

Thursdays are the real big day as far as weekly festivals around here.  The two closest towns, McHenry and Antioch, to us both have great times going on.

MCHENRY SUMMER CONCERT SERIES

This one is held at Veterans Park at the huge gazebo every Thursday from June to the end of September.  It starts with the City band during June then has a lot of great local and regional bands after that, including New Odyssey, (3 Guys, 30 Instruments in August).

IT'S THURSDAY  ANTIOCH

It started last weekend and goes to the middle of August and is held at the bandshell behind Main Street.

This one is probably our favorite one of all, but unfortunately it only goes to the middle of August instead of September.

It is too bad that these two festivals take place on the same night as we often have to make a choice.

Plus, this weekend, a nearby town of Wauconda is having there Waucondafest.  Most every town in the area has a festival during the course of the summer.

Good Times In The Area.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

News From 66, May, 2017: Cabooses, Books and Signs

MAY 18--  Want to stay in a caboose on your 66 drive?   You can stay in a Burlington Northern Railway 1954 caboose at the KOA Campground in Eureka, Missouri.  Also, there are cabooses at the Canyon Motel and RV Park in Williams, Arizona.

Stay in a teepee, stay in a caboose.

MAY 19--  Drew Knowles' 5th Edition of his "The Route 66 Adventure Handbook" has just come out.  A great book, Drew.

MAY 20--  They hope to have the Tropics neon sign up by the spring of 2018 in Lincoln, Illinois.  It will be in the parking lot of the new McDonald's which is on the site of the old Tropics restaurant.

Sounds like a good excuse for a 66 party.

That Is One Neat Old Sign.  --RoadDog

Monday, June 19, 2017

Always A Good Time In the Chain of Lakes Area, Especially Summertime-- Part 1

We have lots of weekly concerts in the area as well as a huge classic car show throughout the summertime.  There is just something great about being outside and listening to a band in the summer.

Here are some of the weekly events we have:

MONDAYS--  GREEN STREET CRUISE NIGHT in McHenry, Illinois.  Every Monday features a different vehicle.  Last Monday was Corvettes and today jeeps, trucks and motorcycles.  I am looking forward to July 10 with Ford Mustangs, July 31 with Camaros, August 21 with pony cars and September 25 with Pontiac.

TUESDAYS--  CRYSTAL LAKE CONCERT IN THE PARK

WEDNESDAYS

WOODSTOCK CITY BAND in the bandstand/gazebo in Woodstock Square.

LINDENHURST LIVE MUSIC IN THE PARK at the pavilion in Lindenhurst and the Lehman Mansion.

More Fun to Come.  --RoadDog

Saturday, June 17, 2017

"Cars 3" Released Yesterday and a Retro Night To See It

I am definitely looking forward to seeing it.  Here's hoping it is better than "Cars 2."  It was ok, but got too far away from Route 66.

When I heard way back when that there was going to be a movie about Route 66, I was really happy, but not when I discovered it was to be animated and, even worse, would feature cars instead of people.  However, after seeing it I became a big fan of animated movies.  They have come a long way since the old Disney ones.

I saw the first one three times and even twice for the second one.  I'll see the new one at least twice.  Once will be in a theater and the second time will be at our McHenry Outdoor theater.  Before seeing it at the outdoor theater i will go to our local Dog 'N Suds for Charburgers and some of that great root beer.

This Is What I Call a Real Retro Trip.  --RoadDog

News Along 66, May 2017: Murals, Tornadoes and Women on 66

MAY 16--  There are five new murals in Miami, Oklahoma and the public was invited to do some of the painting.  I was not real impressed with the murals that I saw.

MAY 17--  One person killed and much damage from a tornado in Elk City, Oklahoma.  It seems that tornadoes have a particular fondness for Route 66 towns.  Also snow and thunderstorms.

MAY 17--  Missouri State University in Springfield got a grant of $2,500 for its "Women on the Mother Road in Missouri.  This is collecting oral histories and a picture of Ramona of the Munger-Moss accompanied the article.

Love That Ramona.  --RoadDog

News From Along 66, May 2017: Red Carpet Corridor and Lebanon 66 Festival

MAY 6-7--  The 2017 Illinois Red Carpet Corridor Festival  The Alban family shot an hour-long video of their experiences during it.  They also had problems finding pins from each town as well.  Those pins were quite popular or they just didn't have enough for the big crowds collecting them.

I enjoyed watching this as we must have been close together when they were doing the festival.

MAY 14--  The Lebanon Route 66 Festival in Lebanon, Missouri, is set to return in June after a seven year break.  There will be a concert and gathering at that great old Munger-Moss Motel.

It is taking place this weekend, June 16-17.

Wish I was There.  --RoadDog

Thursday, June 15, 2017

N.C. January 2017-- Part 13: Moving-- Moving-- Eat

JANUARY 14, 2017, SATURDAY

We picked up a trailer at Holly Ridge to take stuff over to a consignment shop.  The beds and especially the sofas weren't much fun at all.  Thankfully, Mom's Liftavator sure came in handy.  It was an all-day affair.  By the time we finished, the upper and second level were almost completely cleared out.

Talked with the people buying the condo and we are getting close to closing on it.  that was a relief as I sure am happy to be saving the real estate fees.  They are friends of another couple who own a condo in the complex.

We went over to Shuckum Shack in Surf City.  Good food after a long and hard day's moving.  I had eaten there before and really like their shrimpburgers.  Think a slider piled high with fresh shrimp.  There were two of them and fries for $10 and I couldn't eat the second one I was so full.  Poor Andy had mighty poor pickings as he doesn't like anything fish or sea.

Shuckum Shack is a small chain along the Atlantic coast.

Back to the condo for a bit and then back to the Jolly Roger Motel for NFL games and conversation.

Beginning to See the End.  --RoadDog

News From Along 66, May 2017: The Shaffer Spring Goldfish Bowl

MAY 8--  A history of the Shaffer Spring Goldfish Bowl in Arizona.  Located between Kingman and Oatman, the bowl is fed by a natural spring.  During the WPA construction of the "Gold Road Section" from Gold Road Mine to Kingman there was a water shortage.

A man named Shaffer found water seeping out of the rocks.

Goldfish, snails and plants were kept in it to keep algae from growing.

The bowl has frozen over or dried up on occasion, but someone always restocked.

There are 31 steps up to it and no banisters.   You can find it after MM 31 heading to Oatman and those burros.

--RoadDog

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Hey, It's Flag Day

Hope you have one or more United States flags flying today as it is June 14th.  This became a day to fly the flag by President Harry Truman signing a bill making it a day to observe.

The flag stands for the United States, the greatest country ever to be on earth.

So Proud and Happy To Be In the United States.  --RoadDog

N.C. January 2017-- Part 12: Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda, But Didn't

JANUARY 14, 2017, SATURDAY

As I mentioned in the last entry about this trip yesterday, I would have really have loved to be down at Carolina Beach and Kure Beach today as there were big doings going on about Fort Fisher.  This is the 152nd anniversary of the 2nd Battle of Fort Fisher.

I have been wanting to go for years, but Liz's birthday is January 10 and since dad died, I have been going to North Carolina to visit Mom for Thanksgiving.  To come back from N.C. in early December and then turn around and go back six weeks later was just too much.  (It is 1050 miles to Goldsboro and another 100 to Carolina Beach.)

This morning, the Friends of Fort fisher, to which I belong, was having their annual meeting and descendants reunion at the Marriott at Carolina Beach with Chris Fonvielle, author and Fort Fisher expert speaking.

Then, there were all sorts of things going on at Fort Fisher, about four miles away.  There were re-enactors, cannon firing, kids activities and talks by Rod Gragg who wrote the first book on Fort Fisher "Confederate Goliath" and Richard Triebe who wrote a novel about blockade running, got hooked on the fort, and then wrote two books on Fort Fisher's history and garrison and captured soldiers sent to the Union's infamous Elmira Prison (referred to as "Hellmira").

As much as I wanted to go, I had lots to do at Mom's condo.  And since I inherited it, I don't think the others would appreciate it if I took off for Fort Fisher.

But, I Really Would Have Loved To Go.  Perhaps Next Year.  --RoadDog


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

N.C. January 2017-- Part 11: Jolly Roger Motel and Fort Fisher Anniversary

JANUARY 14, 2017, SATURDAY

This was a day to move stuff.  I mean, move lots and lots and lots of stuff.  I tell you, 65-year-old bones and muscles might be just a bit past prime operation.

Bob, Andy and I are staying at the Jolly Roger Motel, next to the Jolly Roger Pier in Topsail Beach, N.C.

Topsail Island, where Topsail Beach is located, got its name from the topsails of pirate ships which used to wait behind the barrier island for  unsuspecting merchant ships to pass by.  Captain Jack would appreciate this.

Great view of the ocean and a real pretty sunrise this morning.  Temperature yesterday was in the 70s all the way through North Carolina, but today 50 degrees is forecast.  Several fishermen were staying at the motel and there was one on the shore fishing and no one was up on the pier.

I sure know where I'd much rather be today, and that is at Fort Fisher down at Kure Beach, about fifty miles away as you drive a car, but maybe 25 by water.  This weekend is the 152nd anniversary of the Second Battle of Fort Fisher during the Civil War.  This is the battle which resulted in the fort's capture and there were all sorts of things going on there.

Fort Fisher Is MY Civil War Site and the Reason I Got Into History.  --RoadDog

News From Along 66, May 2017: Devil's Elbow to Rebuild and Bloomington Gets a Clue

MAY 6--  Devil's Elbow residents determined to rebuild.  Good for them.  Much too pretty an area to abandon.

MAY 7--    Route 66 visitors center in Bloomington, Illinois, sees a fifty percent increase in attendance to 27,173 with its Cruisin' With  Lincoln on 66.

They have come from 50 countries and 45 states.

They estimate that this increase in visitation brings $861,155 in spending to the community.

It is sure nice that Bloomington and Normal have FINALLY figured out that they should do something with  their Route 66 heritage.

About Time B-N.  --RoadDog

Monday, June 12, 2017

N.C. January 2017-- Part 10: Getting Movers Together

JANUARY 13, FRIDAY

My sister Julie and her boyfriend Ed were coming from Savannah and we met them  at the El Coreal Mexican restaurant in Surf City which Bob had suggested.  It is right by a favorite place of mine called Shuckin' Shack.  El Coreal is quite a popular place as it was packed.

This was the first time I'd met Ed and it was very difficult to talk with him because of how loud everyone was talking.  When we were able to hear, he has quite a few things in common with me, including a love of history and he was a deejay.

We went back to the condo in Topsail Beach and did some more furniture moving.

--RoadDog

News From Along 66, May, 2017: Devil's Elbow, Funks Grove and Kingman

MAY 2--  A county official declared "Devil's Elbow is gione."  Flooding went over the deck of the famous bridge and hit the roof of the Elbow Inn.  One house in the town came loose and crashed into another one.

Here's hoping for a recovery.  This is one of our favorite places along 66.

MAY 4--  Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner visited Funks Grove Maple Sirip during a small business tour.  Hope he got some of that sirip.

MAY 4--  A neon sign returned to Kingman, Arizona's Route 66 for the first time in 70 years.  It was taken down in the late 1940s.  It reads "Entering El Trovatore Unincorporated.

The Route 66 Association of Kingman neon restoration accomplished it.

--RoadDog

News From Along Rt. 66, May, 2017: Flooding in Devil's Elbow and the Mill Reopens

MAY 1--  Devil's Elbow, Missouri, was ravaged by flooding.  residents were ordered to evacuate  The Big Piney River by early Sunday morning had already exceeded its record flooding by four feet and the water was still rising.

In Waynesville, water threatened the historic Roubidoux Bridge.  The Gasconade River overflowed the deck of the Gasconade Bridge.

This flooding was made even sadder in that the Devil's Bridge area had just been listed on the NRHP.

MAY 1--  The Mill in Lincoln, Illinois, reopened Saturday after being closed 21 years since 1996.  Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner was there.  It is now a museum and Route 66 welcome center with lots of memorabilia from the Mill and Hallie's on the Square, which is now closed, but used to serve a lot of the Mill's recipes.

The Mill is at 7385 Washington Street and is open 1-4 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday.

We're sure looking forward to visiting it the next time we're in the area.  I didn't know that Hallie's was closed, but at least we got to eat there.

--RoadDog

Saturday, June 10, 2017

News From Route 66, April 2017: Devil's Elbow Added To NRHP

APRIL 29--  This was kind of sad news, though, in regards to the massive flooding that took place of the area a few days later.

The Devil's Elbow Historic District and Piney Bend Cabins were added to the National register of Historic Places (NRHP).  Devil's Elbow, Missouri.

Also, the Piney Beach, the Piney Beach Cabin, Miller's Market/Post Office, McCoy's Store/Hotel, Elbow Inn (the former Munger-Moss Sandwich Shop), site of the Devil's Elbow Cafe, Hiawatha Lodge, Graham's Camp, Devil's Elbow Bridge and Route 66.

In the 1940s, Missouri referred to this area as "one of the Seven Beauty Spots of Missouri."

The Piney Beach Cabins, at 12810 Tank Road, just off Old Route 66 is sometimes listed as being in the towns of Hooker, Devil's Elbow or St. Robert, Missouri.  It has seven Ozark stone cabins and an office and was constructed in 1952.

And Then Came the Floods.  --RoadDog

News From Route 66, April 2017: Lincoln Mystery Solved

These articles are taken from the Route 66 News site, a clearing house of all things Route 66 news.  It has many more news accounts.  I just take the ones I am most interested in to write about here.  Check the site out.

APRIL 28--  Front Street bridge in Galena, Kansas will be closed until July for repairs.  It is better known to Route 66ers as the Galena Viaduct.  The bridge was in serious need of repairs.

APRIL 29--  The Mosaic Church will now operate the South Pasadena Rialto Theatre.  It is always good to find a new use for a neat old building.  Much better than tearing it down.

APRIL 30--  The Mill in Lincoln, Illinois, plays a role in solving an Abraham Lincoln mystery.  It reopened this weekend.  Lincoln was rumored to have practiced law at the Lincoln Christian Church in the late 1850s after the courthouse burned down and the church was used.

--RoadDog

Friday, June 9, 2017

A High School Joyride in 1917?

From the May 10, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Paul Greeley and Kirk McAllister of Waterman, borrowed a fellow student's Ford after school Wednesday afternoon and took Irene Gilchrist and Elizabeth Heey for a little spin.

"SAs they were going downhill near the Frost farm south of town, part of the steering apparatus gave way and the car went into a ditch and turned turtle."

There was no mention of injuries and I doubt in 1917 that they had seatbelts.  Were they boy and girl friends?  Did the student who owned the car know they were "borrowing"it?  Were they driving fast and dangerously as teenagers often do?  Were they joyriding?

I doubt that many high school students were driving cars to school back then (not like today).  So what gives with the student having a car at school?

Inquiring Minds Want to Know.  --RoadDog

Thursday, June 8, 2017

N.C. January 2017-- Part 9: Andy and Arrival at Topsail Beach

JANUARY 13, 2017, Friday

I picked up my nephew Andy at Raleigh-Durham Airport (he had flown in from Nashville to help clear out Mom's condo at Topsail Beach, N.C., the purpose of my trip).  We did some catching up the rest of the way as we rarely get to see each other.

  Well, we talked when he wasn't on his "Idge Phone."  He is of that generation, you know.

No problems driving through Raleigh as I had anticipated.  Raleigh is notorious for traffic.  Took I-40 to US-17 near Wilmington, N.C., and then north.  I couldn't believe how much traffic there was during rush hour in little Hamstead.  We had a long wait just to turn across the southbound lanes to get gas.

We met my brother Bob at Mom's condo and began moving items from the main and upper levels to the lower level.

Sure was hoping we wouldn't get any heavy rain in the next few days because of the possibility of getting several inches of water in the lower level.  Flooding is something you don't want to happen while collecting stuff to take to the consignment shop in Holly Ridge in the lower level.

--RoadDog

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

19 Bucket List Regional Fast Food Chains-- Part 2: Skyline Chili

Golden Crust--  New York City

Sheetz--  Pennsylvania**

Skyline Chili--  Ohio**  Love my Cincy Chili!!!

Runza--  Midwest

Pal's Sudden Service--  Virginia

Danny & Clyde's--  Louisiana

Harold's Chicken Shack--  Upper Midwest, Great lakes

Winstead's--  Missouri

Xi'an Famous Foods--  New York City

Burgerville--  Pacific Northwest

What!!  NO IN-N-OUT BURGER????  --RoadDog

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

19 Bucket List Regional Fast Food Chains to Try Before You Die-- Part 1: Culver's

From the April 12, 2016, "First We Feast."

**. Places I've eaten.

Waffle House--  South **

Whataburger--  Texas  **

Bojangles--  Mid-Atlantic  **

Friendly's--  Northeast

Biscuitville--  N.C. and Virginia**

Taco Time--  Pacific Northwest

Culver's--  Midwest**  Of course, these are all over the place now.

The Habit--  California

Iceberg Drive Inn--  West

First We Feast.--  RoadDog

Monday, June 5, 2017

100 Years of Bankhead Highway History Last Year

From the April 6, 2016, Weatherford (Texas) Democrat "Celebrating 100 years of highway history."

A vintage car convoy will leave April 23 and drive the Bankhead Highway.  The cars are 1920s-1960s American vehicles.  Drivers will dress in appropriate period clothing.

The Bankhead Highway Centennial Celebration is organized by the North Texas Chapter of Antique American Independent Automobile Association.

Aledo will be the first stop, then Weatherford, Milsap and Mineral Wells.

The Bankhead Highway came into being in 1916 as part of the Federal Highway Aid and Highway Act.  U.S. Senator John Hollis Bankhead, of Birmingham, Alabama, was "instrumental" in introducing and passing legislation for it.

It was the first highway to connect the District of Columbia and San Diego, the southern version of the Lincoln Highway.

'Soon it was a very heavily traveled road.  At one point, it is estimated that one-third of the nation's traffic traveled on it.

--RoadDog


Friday, June 2, 2017

Taking a Ride on the Lincoln Highway Today

In a short time, Liz and I will be heading out to our second favorite old road, the Lincoln Highway and driving a stretch of it.

Thinking of having lunch in Franklin Grove and visiting the National Headquarters of the Lincoln Highway.  It's been a while since we've been there.

--RoadDog

Illinois' Red Carpet Corridor Festival-- Part 9: Bob's Bus Home

MAY 6, 2017, SATURDAY

Also parked behind the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum in Pontiac is Bob Waldmire's converted bus home.  This we had never seen while Bob was alive, but is where he held "court" in his final weeks.  The museum now has it.

It is every bit as crammed with stuff as was his minibus.  We walked through it and talked with Cathy Stevanovich, the president of the Illinois Route 66 Association who was manning it.  She said the association is working hard on find an inside place to keep the bus as the Illinois weather is posing a problem.

They thought they had a place in Pontiac, but it fell through.

Everything inside the bus is just sitting out the way Bob left it.  Sadly, Cathy said that items have disappeared as people go through it.

--RoadDog

Illinois' Red Carpet Corridor Festival-- Part 8: Best Route 66 Mural

We went outside to the back of the museum to view what probably is the very best mural of Route 66 on the back of the building and it is sure a big one.  It is prominently featured in the State of Illinois' tourism 30-second commercials when it has the red '67 Firebird convertible driving at fast speed past it.

However, since the mural is in a small parking lot it is not likely that the great old car (I had a '67 blue Firebird convertible) was going real fast when it passed it.

Sure wish that '67 was still there.

We found out later at Bull's Place that a friend of the manager owns that car.

--RoadDog

Thursday, June 1, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Why Carlinville, Illinois, Has So many sears Homes

APRIL 28--The sears homes in Carlinville are in an area known as the Sears Addition in Carlinville.  Elgin, Illinois, has the most sears homes with more than 210.  However, Carlinville has the highest concentration of contiguous Sears homes with more than 150 in a 12-block neighborhood.

Sears homes were offered by the Sears-Roebuck stores.  You could order it and the home would be delivered to your local train station and you'd move the kit to your home site and build it.

My brother lives in a Sears home in Goldsboro, North Carolina.

In 1917, the Standard Oil Company needed coal as a part of the process for converting crude oil into gasoline.  The company bought land which included the Carlinville Mine.  To attract miners, they purchased more than 192 kit homes from sears and had them built in Carlinville, Wood River and Schiper.  One hundred and fifty-six went to Carlinville by train.

These kit homes cost as little as $1,100 and contained as many as 12,000 pieces and a 75 page instruction booklet.  Standard Oil stopped ordering the kits in 1940.

Of the Sears homes, 152 of the original 156 in the Standard Addition still stand.  Three burned down and one was moved.

Always Interested in Sears Homes.  --RoadDog


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: A Route 66 Wedding and the Mill

APRIL 24--  There was a wedding of two really big names in the Route 66 family at the Arcadia Route 66 Neon Fest at Jim Ross' house near Arcadia.  Jim Ross married Shellee Graham and Michael Wallis officiated.

Both Jim Ross and Shelle Graham are authors.  Jim wrote the "Oklahoma Route 66" guidebook and Shellee is famous for her photographs and book on the Coral Court Motel in St. Louis.

APRIL 27--  Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner and state Representative Tim Butler were to attend The Mill's grand opening in Lincoln, Illinois.  It is good to have a governor and state folks interested in Route 66.  We are looking forward to stopping at the Mill later this summer.

Wedding Bells Did Ring.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Memorial Day 2017: Remembering Our Troops

From the May 29, 2017, Chicago Tribune political cartoon by Signe Wilkinson, Philadelphia Daily News.

A picture of a cemetery with a mass of gravestones.  All have U.S. flags and each one has a different name on it:

Irish American
English American
Mexican American
German American
African American
Scottish American
Native American
Italian American
Iraqi American
French American
Chinese American
Puerto Rican American
Cuban American
Greek American
Japan American

And, so forth.

Pretty-well sums it up, even if I could do without the country classification and just say "American."

We're All Americans.

Monday, May 29, 2017

On This Memorial Day 2017: Just Got Back From the Indy 500

I just got back a couple hours ago from Indianapolis, Indiana, where they held one of the biggest salutes in the country in honor of our veterans.  And, that would be the Indy 500.

A large part of the opening ceremonies are devoted to our military.  And, then, there is always the flyover by military planes.

This year, it was a B-52 bomber.  That thing is massive.

Thank You  U.S. service Men and Women, Past and Present.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

80 To 57 To 90/94 To 55? Chicago Roads or Weather?

No, these numbers are not a song by the group Chicago.

Consult an atlas for Chicago area roads or one of your aps for this one.  Especially considering how crazy our weather has been of late:

80 to 57 to 90/94 to 55.  All interstates.

Yep, our temps are sure jumping around.

Wait a Minute, We Also Have A US-12 and US-14!!  Oh No!!  --RoadDog

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Illinois' Red Carpet Corridor Festival-- Part 7: Bob Waldmire

MAY 6, SATURDAY

Bob Waldmire, Route 66's artist and resident hippy, was often at events along the Mother Road, selling his wares and, of course, talking with all his friends.  And, he sure had a lot of them.

We'll never forget the time in Springfield, Illinois, during the festival when we stopped by this minibus and were talking with Bob.  He asked us if we would watch his stuff for a bit and we agreed.  We'd met him before, but he didn't really know us, but he was willing to let us watch his stuff.

We figured he needed to go to the bathroom and agreed.  How long could that take?  He left and we manned his spot for several minutes.  Then several more minutes, then a whole bunch of more minutes.  Where is Bob?  Still more time elapsed and after thirty minutes, a friend of his came by and we told him what was happening.

The friend said Bob was walking around the other booths at the festival.  We were sure happy when the friend agreed to watch Bob's stuff so we were out of there.

What Ya Gonna Do With That Bob.  --RoadDog.

Illinois Red Carpet Corridor Festival-- Part 6: Pontiac and Bob Waldmire, the Ultimate Hippy

MAY 6, SATURDAY

From Odell, we drove the rest of the way to tonight's destination, Pontiac, the City of Murals and Museums.  Along the way, we passed the famous Meramec Caverns barn and the Log Cabin restaurant.  That barn is looking worse for wear and we hope we don't lose it like we did the one in Hamel.

When we got to Pontiac, we first went to Thornton's as we were almost to red light area on the gas gauge so had to fill up.

Then, it was to Pontiac's downtown where it is hard to look anywhere and not see a mural, museum or those neat little painted cars.  We parked by a mural and walked into the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum and looked around a bit before paying my 2017 dues to the Illinois Association.

I was glad when the museum got Bob Waldmire's Volkswagen minibus.  We had seen it so many times at various Route 66 gatherings along the way.  This minibus was the reason for Fillmore in the movie "Cars."  And everything about Fillmore was Bob Waldmire who was the very epitome of a Hippy.  I never knew whether to feel sorry for him or jealous of him.  To live life exactly the way you want to live it.

--RoadDog

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: The Riviera Fire in 2010

APRIL 23--  The Streetcar Diner was also a target of the Riviera Roadhouse fire in 2010.  It was suspicious from the start and Liz and I were sure it was arson.  But we never heard anything about the cause after the fire.

This is the first time we heard that it definitely was arson as gasoline was used and another, thankfully unsuccessful fire was attempted in the diner.

They know who did the arson, the Riviera's last owner.  At this point it appears they don't know where he is, but I hope he is caught and serves serious time.

The former trolley car was converted into a restaurant in Gardner in the 1930s and later moved to out behind the Riviera where it was restored by the Illinois Route 66 Association.  It has now been moved to Gardner's park which features the famous two-cell jail.

It was so sad to drive by the now empty and cleared site of the Riviera during the Illinois Route 66 Red Carpet Festival two weekends ago.  We had not been by it since before the fire as it was too painful.  We were happy to have the chance to have a root beer float in the diner and liked the marker to the Krafts outside of it.

Great Memories of the Riviera.  --RoadDog

Monday, May 22, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Bill Shea's Reopening As Route 66-Themed Auto Repair Shop

All these articles are taken from Ron Warnick's Route 66 News site, your place for any and all-things Route 66.  He has photos, videos and goes into much more detail than I do.  Plus, I don't write about all his posts.  I pick the articles I am most interested in.

APRIL 22--  Bill Shea's Route 66 Museum in Springfield, Illinois, is returning.  However, now it will be a themed auto repair shop.

Randy Pickett and Jake Niewold are the new owners and will take care of your classic car needs.  They plan to reopen this summer and will  feature old cars and Route 66 memorabilia.

Bill Shea died at age 91 in December 2013.  The contents of his museum were auctioned off in November 2015.

Last year, when we drove by it coming into Springfield, it really tore us up seeing the building standing there vacant and forlorn.  There were many great memories of sitting out in front of the Mahan's Station on the museum property and talking with Bill Shea, his son and Tom Teague.  We had really been hoping his family would continue with his museum and keep all that accumulated memorabilia.

Glad To See Something Else Going In There.  --RoadDog

The Victory Highway-- Part 2: Mostly Became U.S. 40

Washingtion D.C., was dropped from the route and it was relocated to run west from Baltimore to Cumberland, Maryland.  At Cumberland it picked up the old National Road to Vandalia, Illinois, which was already a part of the National Old Trails Road.

It follwed this road until near Fulton, Missouri and then took a different route to Jefferson City and Kansas City then west to Denver over the Golden Belt Highway.  next it went to Salt Lake City to the Wendover Cutoff and into Nevada.

Crossing the Sierra Nevada Mountains into California, to Sacramento and finally to San Francisco.

When numbered highways came into being in 1926, most of the Victory Highway was supplanted by U.S. 40.  The association renamed itself the U.S. Highway 40 Association in 1938.

A Road By Any Other Name.  --RoadDog

The Victory Highway-- Part 1: To Honor America's World War I Deaths

From Wikipedia.

Back on May 18th, I wrote about a Shorpy photograph showing a truck used for signage on the Victory Highway.  This was a highway I'd never heard of before.

It was an auto trail across the United States between New York City and San Francisco.  Immediately, I thought of the Lincoln Highway, which ran  between the same two cities.

The road was created by the Victory Highway Association, which organized in 1921 to locate and mark a transcontinental highway across the country to honor those Americans who died in World War I.  They had plans to have a series of Victory Eagles to mark the route, but only six were ever made.  One of them is at the University of Kansas (the road went through that state).

It 1922, the association determined to run their road from New York City southwest to Camden N.J., Philadelphia Wilmington, Delaware, Baltimore and then Washington, D.C..

--RoadDog

Friday, May 19, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Illinois Route 66 Legislative Bills

APRIL 19--  Illinois Congressman Rodney Davis is on a road trip to promote support for his Route 66 bills for an Illinois Route 66 Centennial Commission and its being made a National Historic Trail.  Representative Avery Bourne is also sponsoring the bill.  I'd vote for them.

APRIL 20--  Joplin, Missouri is going to have "Fiddlers On the Route" musical festival June 30-July 1 at Landreth Park.  A featured band will be the Road Crew.

They sure have a neat logo for the event.

--RoadDog

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Illinois Restaurants

APRIL 18--  The old, long-closed Tropics building in Lincoln, Illinois, was torn down to be replaced by a McDonald's (at least it is not a Walgreen's).

The restaurant opened in 1950 and closed for good in 2004.  At least we got the opportunity to eat there and watch a Bears game one Sunday.

At least the impressive  sign will be put up again (and I understand it will be at the new McDonald's or somewhere close to it.

APRIL 19--  The famous and historical sign at Dell Rhea's Chicken Basket in Willowbrook, Illinois, has been taken down temporarily for a few weeks and slated to be reinstalled by early June.  It has been there for 71 years and is showing the wear and tear of northern Illinois weather.

This was done by a $17,000 matching grant from the Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program.  The company restoring it is the same one that did the Munger-Moss Motel's famous sign in Lebanon, Missouri.

The restaurant opened in 1946.

--RoadDog

San Francisco's Palace of Fine Arts

In the last post, there was a truck involved with the signing of the Victory Highway in California parked out in front of the this San Francisco structure.

The Palace of Fine Arts was built in 1915 as part of the Panama-Pacific International Expedition celebrating the opening of the Panama Canal.  It was not planned as a permanent structure and made of non-durable material.

But, it was so loved by everyone that it wasn't torn down.  Over the years it deteriorated badly.  The original was near ruin in 1964 and demolished.  However, it was replaced with an exact replica made of concrete and steel.

It was quite impressive in the 1921 photograph.

Glad We Still Have It.  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Signing the Victory Highway: 1921

From the March 17, 2016, Shorpy Photos.

You can go to the site and see the picture.

"We are signing the Victory Highway, San Francisco to New York."

San Francisco, circa 1921, "White motor truck at Palace of Fine Arts--California State Automobile Association."

A project from the early days of long-distance motor travel, when auto clubs took the lead in establishing and marking routes between cities and across the country.

A sign on the truck reads: "California State Automobile Ass'n"  There is also a picture of Yosmite Valley, California painted on it and the words "We Are Signing."

--RoadDog

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Illinois' Red Carpet Corridor 2017-- Part 5: Gardner to Odell

MAY 6, 2017, SATURDAY

Still in Gardner

They had a big car show going on in the downtown area (which isn't very big).  We took a quick look and then went into Vino's where they had 66-cent pulled pork sliders.  We ordered four, figuring we would have to order some more, but when we got them, we were only able to finish one apiece (well, I did another half a piece).  They were huge.

We stopped at the Dwight Ambler-Beckler gas station which had a big crowd, lots of old cars and the Texaco Man as well.  Sure glad the town got around to saving this place as it is a neat old gas station.  When we first saw it in 2002, on our first Route 66 trip, it was looking bad and looked even worse the next several years.

Then, we went to the Odell Standard Oil station where we met a group of motorcyclists flying a French flag (or maybe Belgium).  Those European folks sure love our road.

Next Stop, Pontiac.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Illinois Route 66 Red Carpet Corridor Festival 2017-- Part 4: Gardner

MAY 6, SATURDAY

Next stop was Gardner, Illinois, where we stopped for the first time since leaving Joliet.  We had a taste for a root beer float served at the famous Trolley Diner Car which is now located next to the equally famous two-cell jail in the park downtown.  The Diner Car used to be behind the Riviera, but was moved after the fire.  Sadly, the last owner had also tried to start a fire in it at the same time he burned down the Riviera.

A couple from the Lions Club were inside and making up the root beer floats.  Cost was a donation.  We had been in the Diner Car several times at the Riviera, but had never had a seat and eaten something.  We talked with a couple doing the Red Carpet Corridor from St. Louis.

There is a marker outside the Diner Car for Bob and Peggy Kraft and the old Riviera.

We then went to inspect the two-cell jail and its top-of-the-line bathroom facilities.  Glad I didn't need to use the bathroom at this point.

Root Beerin' Down 66.  --RoadDog

Root Saluting Creedence Clearwater Revival-- Part 2: "Traveling Band"

STAND--  Sly & the Family Stone
STAND TALL--  Burton Cummings

GREEN RIVER--  CCR
COMMOTION--  CCR

WITHOUT YOU--  Badfinger
EVERYBODY'S TALKIN'--  Harry Nilsson
SHE'S NOT THERE--  Santana
SHOW BIZ KIDS--  Steely Dan

MIDNIGHT SPECIAL--  CCR
FORTUNATE SON--  CCR

RAMBLIN' MAN--  Bob Seger
UPTIGHT--  Stevie Wonder
SHOW ME THE WAY--  Peter Frampton

BUS STOP--  Hollies
BLUES FOR MY BABY--  Elton John

TRAVELING BAND--  CCR
MY BABY LEFT ME--  CCR

DREAM WEAVER--  Gary Wright
PHONOGRAPH--  Ringo Starr
BABY I LOVE YOU--  Ronettes

MOLINA--  CCR
SOMEDAY NEVER COMES--  CCR

Now, I sure enjoyed those Creedence songs.

Name That Tune (from the above songs):  "Well, Take Me Back Down Where Cool Water Flow, Yeh."  (Answer Below),  --RoadDog

YOU'RE DRINKING TOO MUCH COFFEE WHEN:  You just completed another sweater... and you don't know how to knit.

"Green River"



Monday, May 15, 2017

Illinois' Route 66 Red Carpet Corridor-- Part 3: Braidwood to the Old Riviera

In Braidwood, we got stopped by police as a lot of people were crossing the road between the Polk-A-Dot Drive-In and where they were having their festival grounds.  We didn't stop.

Driving into Gardner, it was very sad to see the site of the old Riviera.  You'd never have known there was a building there.  This is the first time we'd driven by it since the fire.  We always thought it was suspicious and just this past few weeks we read in the Route 66 News that it had been arson and by the last owner, as we expected.

We are sure glad we got the opportunity to go there a lot.  What a unique place with the kitchen upstairs, restaurant and bar downstairs and the dumbwaiter.  And then... those super high toilets.  As they had a wooden plaque "Al Capone Passed Gas Here in 1932."  Great food and fun people, and, of course, Bob Kraft, the luckiest man in the world, holding court behind the bar.

He was "The Luckiest Man in the World" because he could get dressed, go downstairs, drink in his bar, eat in his bar, and go upstairs at the end of the day and sleep.  And he never had to go outside and never had a drivers license.

We Sure Miss Him and Peggy and the Riviera.  --RoadDog

Root Saluting Creedence Clearwater Revival-- Part 1 "Suzie Q"

On April 23, 2017, Bob Stroud on Chicago's WDRV, 97.1 FM, had a Roots Salute on his Rock and Roll Roots show in the morning to my favorite all-time band, Creedence Clearwater Revival in honor of the upcoming birthdays of bassist Stu Cook (April 25, 1945) and drummer Doug Clifford (April 24,1945).

Here are the songs he played on the show:

SUZIE Q--  CCR
I PUT A SPELL ON YOU--  CCR

IN DREAMS--  Roy Orbison
GYPSY WOMAN--  Brian Hyland
GIMME GOOD LOVIN'--  Spencer Davis Group
GETTIN' TOGETHER--  Tommy James & the Shondells

PROUD MARY--  CCR
KEEP ON CHOOGLIN'--  CCRg

HOW LONG--  Ace
OUT OF TIME--  Rolling Stones

GOOD GOLLY MISS MOLLY--  CCR

LONG TALL SALLY--  Beatles
I'M DOWN--  Beatles
GAME OF LOVE--  Wayne Fontana & the Mindbenders
I'M JUST A SINGER IN A ROCK AND ROLL BAND--  Moody Blues

Name That Tune (from the above songs):  "Left A Good Job In The City, Workin' For The Man Every Night And Day."   Answer Below.  --RoadDog


"Proud Mary"

Saturday, May 13, 2017

A Sad Mother's Day for Me

Last Mother's Day I was in Goldsboro, North Carolina, and with Mom as well as my brother and sister.  This was the first time in many years that all three of her children were with her.  She was sure excited and happy.

Little did we know at the time that that was to be her last Mother's Day.  She died unexpectedly in June.

Just not going to be the same again.

On the way down to her funeral, we were listening to a C.W. McCall greatest hits CD and the song "Roses for Mama" came on.  It hit me hard.

Enjoy Your Moms While You Can.

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Route 66 Bills in Congress

APRIL 11--  There is a fundraiser going on to build a huge Route 66 map to be made entirely of New Mexico license plates to be located near Edgewood, New Mexico.  They have raised $5,500 so far and the map will be 40 feet long and 12 feet high.  That'sa Big Map.

APRIL 15--  There are Route 66 bills in Congress.  One is to name the Mother Road as a National Historic Trail and the other is to set up a Route 66 100th Anniversary Commission.  That anniversary is coming up sooner than you'd think.

APRIL 16--  The Old Station in Williamsville, Illinois, has a new owner.  We sure enjoyed stopping there back when it was open with all those eccentric items and those neat car models.

Any Thing That Was Closed And Reopens Is A Good Thing.  --RoadDog

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Lexington's Kelly's On 66

APRIL 7, 2017:  The former Filling Station restaurant on Route 66 in Lexington, Illinois, will be reopening in July as Kelly's On 66.  It closed in 2011 and is at 905 1/2 West Main Street, right across from the famous neon sign directing Route 66 motorists to downtown Lexington.

We ate there once before when it was The Filling Station and often remarked as we drove by that we wished it would reopen.  We were in Lexington this past Sunday during the Illinois Route 66 Red Carpet Corridor Festival and it has the new name up, but not open.

Looking Forward to its Reopening.  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 11, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: Route 66 On Illinois Endangered List

And, speaking of Most Endangered Places in the last two posts, Route 66 made the Landmarks Illinois list.

APRIL 6--  Route 66 is listed among the Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois by Landmarks Illinois in their annual list.  This is not because of preservation and interest of the Mother Road in the state, but, it needs to be permanently designated as a National Historic Trail.

Unfortunately, many historic motels and restaurants have been shuttered or torn down.

Some other endangered Illinois sites:

Singer Pavilion in Chicago
Ryan's Round Barn in Henry County
McKee House in Lombard
Norway Temperance Hall in Norway
Federal Historic Tax Credit
O'Hara Rotunda Building at O'Hara Airport in Chicago
James R. Thompson Center in Chicago

--RoadDog

30th Anniversary of NTHP's "11 Most Endangered Places"-- Part 2

4.  Little Rock Central High School--  Arkansas.  Once the largest high school in the U.S..  Focal point of the Civil Rights Movement.

5.  Cathedral of St. Vibian--  Los Angeles

6.  Governor's island National Monument--  New York City.  Military base.

7.  Angel Island Immigration Station--  San Francisco.  "The Ellis Island of the West."

8.  Travelers' Rest--  Montana  The only archaeologically verified Lewis & Clark campsite.

9.  President's Cottage--  Washington, D.C.

10.  Nine Mile Canyon--  Utah.  Ute and Fremont Indians

11.  Statler Hilton Hotel--  Dallas

--RoadDog

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Today Is the 30th Anniversary of the NTHP's "11 Most Endangered Places"-- Part 2

The first one came out in 1988 and this has proven to be a great way to make Americans aware of examples of American architecture and cultural heritage that are on the brink of destruction or irreparable damage.

Some of the places have been lost, but others have made remarkable recoveries.

here is a list of eleven success stories in the last 30 years.

1.  Antietam National Battlefield Park--  It was on the first list in 1988 and today is considered one of the best-preserved battlefields from the Civil War.

2.  Penn School--  South Carolina  This school for black children was established in 1862.

3.  Historic Boston theaters

Congratulations National Trust for Historic Preservation!!  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Illinois Route 66's Red Carpet Corridor Festival-- Part 2: To Wilmington

MAY 6, 2017

We left downtown Joliet, past the Rialto Theatre and then encountered one of the biggest-ever potholes that I ever had seen, unfortunately at a jarring speed.  I figured we'd get a flat for sure, but didn't.

It had been a lot of years since we had driven down this stretch of Route 66 from Joliet to Dwight, Illinois.  It is four lane for much of the stretch, we always reminds me of what it must have been like driving the old four lane 66, before the interstates came.

We passed Mr. B's on 66 near Preston, but it appears the place is closed.  We had eaten there once before.  Also went past the two racetracks.

We went past the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery and the Midewin Nature Preserve (both formerly of the huge Joliet Arsenal.  Midewin was sponsoring trips out to see its bison herd, but we didn't stop.

Always great to see the Gemini Giant standing tall and proud at the old Launching Pad Restaurant in Wilmington.  Sadly, the restaurant has been closed for a long time.  We did see some picture-taking by the muffler man/space man.

That old truck on the hill is rusting away still.  Always something that reminds us of Route 66.

Going Back Into history.  --RoadDog




Monday, May 8, 2017

Illinois' Route 66 Red Corridor Festival-- Part 1: To Joliet

We decided on Friday to get ourselves back to the Mother Road and enjoy the festival.

MAY 6, 2017

We got off at 10 a.m.. with the odometer on the '03 Malibu at 137,999 miles as we backed out of the driveway.  We have never had a car make it over 100,000 miles.

Took Il-120 to Il-47 and then south to a bit past Yorkville where we picked up US-52 into Joliet to begin our festival.  We saw a lot of standing water and new ponds around Woodstock and even more on 52 to Joliet.  The last two weeks have been ones with lots and lots of rain.

At several intersections along the way there were people standing by the roads with placards telling motorists to be aware of motorcyclists.

We have not been to Joliet and that stretch of Route 66 to Dwight, Illinois, in a long time so we were interested in what changes there might be.

This year, the Red Corridor Festival was giving out mini-buttons for all the stops.

We went to the Joliet Area Historical Museum which had free admission for the event and received our first, and as it turned out, only button and I stabbed myself a couple times trying to get it on my tee-shirt (which was a 2011 Missouri Route 66 Motor Tour one (I couldn't find my other 66 shirts).  It featured the Jake and Elwood Blues Brothers statues.

We toured the Lincoln Highway, Route 66 and Joliet Sports Hall of Fame exhibits before leaving.

Good To be Back On Da Road.  --RoadDog


Saturday, May 6, 2017

Going to Illinois' Route 66 Red Carpet Corridor Festival Today

In a couple hours, Liz and I will be heading out for the Illinois Route 66 Red Carpet Corridor Festival.  This will be today and tomorrow, may 6 and 7 and will stretch from Joliet to Towanda (just north of Bloomington-Normal).

Every town along the way has things planned for it, some more than others.

The Joliet Area Historical Museum has free admission .  Then there are the towns of Elwood, Wilmington, Braidwood, Godley and Braceville.  Gardner will feature 66 cent pork sliders served from the Diner by the two-cell jail in the downtown park.

This is the stretch where we rarely go as usually we take Illinois Highway 47 to Dwight where we pick up the Mother Road.

Dwight and Odell will be featuring their old gas stations and the Texaco man.  Pontiac will have a concert by the Route 66 Concert Band.

We plan on spending tonight in Pontiac and then driving to Towanda on Sunday, hitting all spots along the way.

Looking forward to visiting the old Filling Station restaurant in Lexington and then the car show and Best Damn Garage in Towanda Sunday.

Route 66in' It All the Way.  --RoadDog

Friday, May 5, 2017

Trip Advisor's Most Popular State Attractions-- Part 5: National D-Day Memorial

TENNESSEE--  Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail in Great Smoky Mountains National Park
TEXAS--  Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Theatre, Dallas

UTAH--  Observation Point in Zion National Park
VERMONT--  Smugglers' Notch State Park, Stowe

VIRGINIA--  National D-Day Memorial, Bedford
WASHINGTON--  Hurricane Ridge, Olympic National Park

WEST VIRGINIA--  New River Gorge Bridge, Fayetteville
WISCONSIN-- Basilica of St. Josephat, Milwaukee

WYOMING--  Lamar Valley in Yellowstone National Park

June 6, 1944.  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Trip Advisor's Most Popular State Destinations--Part 4: Gettysburg

NEW YORK--  Central Park, New York City
NORTH CAROLINA--  Blue Ridge Parkway--

NORTH DAKOTA--  Fargo Theatre, Fargo
OHIO--  Portsmouth Floodwall Murals

OKLAHOMA--  Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum
OREGON--  Cape Perpetua Scenic Area, Yachats

PENNSYLVANIA--  Gettysburg National Military Park
RHODE ISLAND--  Ocean Drive, Newport

SOUTH CAROLINA--  Hunting Island State Park, Beaufort
SOUTH DAKOTA--  Loop Road in Badlands National Park

Pickett's Charge.  --RoadDog


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Make It a Garden Trip

From the Spring National Trust for Preservation magazine "Gardens At National Trust Historic Sites Provide a Breath of Fresh Air."

They listed and wrote about four of them.  I am quite the person for flower gardens.

1.  LYNDHURST--  Tarrytown, New York   On the Hudson River.

2.  THE SHADOWS--  New Iberia, Louisiana  Former plantation.  Concentrates on shade plants.

3.  BELLE GROVE--  Middleton, Virginia

4.  BRUCEMORE--  Cedar Rapids, Iowa

So, Next Time Traveling, Stop and Smell the Roses.

Route 66 Sites Suffer in Missouri Flooding

I am very sorry to find out that many of Route 66's best sites in Missouri have suffered so badly in the flooding that took place (and still is) because of the torrential rains there this last week.

I was excited to read about the little town of Devil's Elbow and special bar Elbow Inn making the NRHP list last week, now, according to a county official there, "Devil's Elbow is gone."  The worst flood ever in that place.

Plus, the Gasconade River was over the Gasconade Bridge near Lebanon.  We were at that bridge last April in an effort to save the bridge from being torn down.  It was saved, but hopefully now it won't be flooded away.

Sad Times in Missouri.  --RoadDog

Trip Advisor's Most Popular State Attractions-- Part 3 Kancamagus Highway

MICHIGAN--  Guardian Building, Detroit
MINNESOTA--  North Shore Scenic Drive, Duluth

MISSISSIPPI--  USS Cairo Museum, Vicksburg
MISSOURI--  Gateway Arch, St, Louis

MONTANA--  Going-To-The-Sun Road, Glacial National Park
NEBRASKA--  Great Platte River Road Archway, Kearney

NEVADA--  Bellagio Fountains, Las Vegas
NEW HAMPSHIRE--  Kancamagus Highway

NEW JERSEY--  Ocean City Boardwalk
NEW MEXICO--  White Sands National Monument, Alamogordo

Under the Boardwalk.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

News From Along Route 66, April 2017: The El Vado Motel to reopen

These items are taken from the Route 66 News site.  This site has a lot more things in it, but I just choose the ones I am most interested in and have comments about them.  Plus, there is a lot more information and pictures.  If you want to know ANYTHING about Route 66, go to this site.

APRIL 2--  El Vado Motel work begins in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and hope to have it finished by August 1.  It will be reopening as a boutique motel.  Ponderosa Brewing is to open a tap room on premises and there will be food pods, 21 motel rooms and retail spaces.

This is an $18 million project and $3 million has come from the city.

Daniel Murphy opened the El Vado Auto Court Motel on Route 66 in 1937.  It was listed on the NRHP in 1993 and closed in 2005.

Always great when an old and neat-looking structure is re-purposed and svaed.

Albuquerque putting its money where its mouth is!

Congratulations to All.  --RoadDoh

Trip Advisor's Most Popular State Attractions-- Part 2: "The Bean"

HAWAII--  Na Pali Coast, Kauai
IDAHO--  Craters of the Moon National Monument, Arco

ILLINOIS--  Cloud gate "The Bean", Chicago
INDIANA--  Indiana War Memorial, Indianapolis

IOWA--  Grotto of the Redemption, West Bend
KANSAS--  Massachusetts Street, Lawrence

KENTUCKY--  Floodwall Murals, Paducah
LOUISIANA--  St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans

MAINE--  Portland Head Lighthouse, Cape Elizabeth
MARYLAND--  Fort McHenry National Monument, Baltimore

Seeing Star-Spangled Banners.  --RoadDog

Trip Advisor's Most Popular Tourist Destinations-- Part 1: Red Rock Scenic Byway

From the May 24, 2014, Parade Magazine "The Most Popular Tourist Attractions in All 50 States, According to Trip Advisor" by Vi-an Nguyen.

Trip Advisor used their "Trip Advisor Popularity Index" including quality, quantity and recency of reviews.  Some spots that you'd expect to make the list, didn't make it like Disneyland or the Statue of Liberty.

ALABAMA--  USS Alabama, Mobile
ALASKA--  Anan Wildlife Observatory, Wrangell

ARIZONA--  Red Rock Scenic Byway
ARKANSAS-- William Clinton Presidential Library, Little Rock

CALIFORNIA--  Pacific Coast Highway, Route 1, Los Angeles to Carmel.
COLORADO--  Trail Ridge Road,  Estes Park

CONNECTICUT--  Philip Johnson Glass House, New Canaan
WASHINGTON D.C.--  Lincoln Memorial/Reflecting Pond

FLORIDA--  Stetson Mansion, DeLand
GEORGIA--  Mickve Israel Temple, Savannah

--RoadDog

Monday, May 1, 2017

Record Store Day-- Part 3: Made It To the Vinyl Frontier

After the discussion group meeting, I drove back to McHenry, Illinois, and the line was gone from outside the Vinyl Frontier, so parked and went inside.  There were about 25 people inside, and with the narrowness of the aisles, that made for some difficulty walking around and browsing, you know, flipping through the albums.

The owner said this was the best-ever Record Store Day crowd ever with a big smile on his face.  As usual, there were kids and teenagers in there, something that is a good thing for me to see.  It seems that everything I like gets taken away from me.

I did my flipping through the albums and bought three:

The Super Groups Atco Records with songs by Cream, Bee Gees, Rascals, Buffalo Springfield, Vanilla Fudge and Iron Butterfly (1969)

Smash Sounds, Atco Records, with songs by the Capitols, Sonny & Cher, Arthur Conley, Otis Redding and others.  (1967

Beau Brummels From the Vaults   Rhino Records (1982)

I also bought a CD, Harry Nilsson Anthology.

So, I Did My Part for Record Store Day (Even Though I Really Don't Need Any More Albums).  --RoadDog

Looking Back to Route 66: Victorville, California

From the October 12 San Bernardino (California) Sun.  Not sure what year.

Victorville is really two towns.  One the new, bix box store and plenty of traffic.

The old one was founded by Jacob Nash Victor in 1885.  The Santa Fe Railroad used the names of employees for its western waterstops.  Mr. Victor was a supervisor.  In 1909, the growing town was renamed Victorville to avoid confusion with Victor, Colorado.

In 1926, Route 66 came through town and much activity developed along 7th Street.

One place, The Red Rooster, was a popular roadhouse and had a small part in the film "The Jazz Singer" with Neil Diamond.  It was forced to close because of loss of business after I-15 was built.  Today it is a Route 66 museum.  They have a nine-foot metal sign of a hula girl and became known as Hulaville.

--RoadDog

Friday, April 28, 2017

Reopening of the Mill in Lincoln!!

Saturday, April 29, 2017, will be quite the day in Lincoln, Illinois, as it will mark the opening of the Mill after many years of work and effort by many groups.

I remember seeing it on our first Route 66 trip back in 2002 and being sad that it had fallen upon such hard times.  I mean, it was looking bad.  Then it continued to get worse.

But finally, the city realized what an excellent piece of history they had and it has since been restored and will open as a museum.

Wish we could be there, but we are planning on doing the Red Carpet Corridor weekend May 6-7 and will probably get to Lincoln to check it out on our way to Springfield.

Happy Days Be Here Again.  --RoadMill

Budget Vegas-- Getting That Gambling Bang for Your Buck-- Part 3

7.  Check out museums.  two of note are the Neon Museum and Mob Museum.  At least you're not losing money gambling.

8.  Also, there are a lot of street performers.

9.  Avoid steakhouses and buffet bonanzas.  Go to delis and local restaurants.  And, definitely, positively, In-N-Out Burgers.

10.  Take the bus on Route 109.  It is $2 a ride or $20 for three days.

11.  Get out of town.  Some neat places to visit are the Valley of Fire State Park and Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.  Also Mount Charleston.

Lucky Seven-Eleven.  --RoadDog

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Budget Vegas, Getting the Bang for Your Gambling Buck-- Part 2

3.  Las Vegas Boulevard has the most expensive rooms.  Stay at a non-casino hotel.

4.  Off strip casinos have the best deals.

5.  Experience Fremont Street.  Its rooms, restaurants, gambling tables, etc. are less expensive.

6.  Tickets to the big shows are expensive and often sold out.  However, you can use Tix 4 Tonight booths, which open at 10 a.m., to get better deals.

--RoadDog

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: Illinois Travel Ads Feature Route 66 Sites

MARCH 27--  Illinois touts Route 66 to young people in its new "Up for Amazing" TV campaign.  The series aims at Gen X and Millennials and Route 66 sites are prominent in two of the thirty second ads.

These ads are shown in 13 Midwestern markets through July.  The Route 66 shield at the Illinois Route 66 Museum in Pontiac is one of the shots as are quite a few in Chicago.

In case your're wondering, Gen X were born in the mid-60s to early 1980s.  Millennials are born from the 1980s to 2000.

I always get a kick out of that Route 66 shield.  That is sure impressive.

We also need to keep young people interested in the old roads.  I look around at Route 66 gatherings and sure are a lot of us oldsters.

MARCH 30--  Meteor City Trading Post may have a savior.  Michael and Joann Brown, from Indiana plan to restore and reopen it.  It closed in 2012 and was ransacked.

--RoadDog

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Budget Vegas, Getting the Gambling Bang for Your Buck-- Part 1

From the April 22, 2014, Yahoo! Travel, Compass  "Budget Las Vegas:  How to save on Sin City fun" by Christy Karras.

Las Vegas increasingly caters to the high rollers and rich.  (A big reason why I don't care if I ever go back.)

Her brother oversees hotel casino pools and says you should avoid the pools of ones hosting big, late-night pool parties as chlorine can only do so much.

Here are some tips if you still want to go:

1.  Avoid weekends, big sporting events like the Super Bowl and big conventions.  Crowds and prices of everything go way up.

2.  Gamble early in the morning when table minimums are lower  Most of the upscale casinos now how minimum $25 bets now at other times.

More to Come.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Record Store Day-- Part 2: No Vinyl Frontier, But Barnes & Noble

I decided to stop at the Vinyl Revolution on my way to the McHenry Civil War Round Table discussion group meeting in Crystal Lake and left early.  Unfortunately, the line was already around the corner and the place wasn't yet open.  And, I really hate lines.

I hate lines, so continued on my way to Crystal Lake.  I was running early, so stopped at McDonald's for a breakfast biscuit and then went to the Barnes & Noble bookstore on Northwest Highway (US-14) and bought a Blue  & Gray magazine featuring the Battle of Bentonville and the Russian Navy and World War II magazine featuring the Sullivan Brothers.

One thing that does my heart good is seeing all the vinyl records they now sell.  Sadly, though, they are all in the $20+ range, more than I like to pay.  I went through Barnes & Nobles's sale CDs, but didn't buy any.

Then, it was on to Panera Bread for the discussion group.  Today's topic was April 1865.

--RoadDog

Monday, April 24, 2017

Record Store Day, April 22, 2017-- Part 1: McHenry's Vinyl Revolution Record Store

This is a day I look forward to every year as it does my heart good to see there are still a few of us out there who still like our old vinyl albums (although I must admit I like CDs better and play them way more often).  There is just something about flipping through albums and looking for that special treasure.  Who knows if you're going to find it or not?  It's a real treasure hunt.

And, I almost forgot about it until I was listening to Chicago's WXRT, 93.1 FM, and they mentioned it.  Sure glad they did.  I was going through some e-mail alerts for the blogs in preparation for driving to Crystal Lake, Illinois, for the McHenry County Civil War Round Table discussion group meeting about events of April 1865.  WXRT, starting at noon and going to midnight, also played nothing but vinyl albums in honor of the Record Store Day.

That means, I will drive right by my local mom and pop record store, The Vinyl Revolution, in McHenry, Illinois.  I even left early to go to the discussion group, only to find the store not opening until 9 a.m., and the line already stretching along the sidewalk and around the corner.

I decided to stop in on my return.

No Record Store For Me!!!  --RoadDog

Friday, April 21, 2017

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: A New Museum for Pontiac

MARCH 19--  Chuck Berry died in St. Louis at age 90.  A real big reason we still have rock and roll.

MARCH 22--  Ruby Street Bridge in Joliet, Illinois, will be undergoing months of repairs.  It is a classic bridge, built in 1935, rehabilitated in 1972 and 2011.  It is 400 feet long and crosses the Des Plaines River.

A real pretty bridge.

MARCH 24--  Pontiac, Illinois, to get a new museum.  It will be the Basketball Museum of Illinois which has gotten the green light in town and will open late 2017 or 2018.  It will cover all things basketball in the state.  And that will no doubt include Herbron, Illinois, whose small high school shocked everyone back in the early 1950s when they won the state championship.

It will be in a closed K-Mart store and will be operated by the Illinois Basket ball Coaches Association  Plans call for it to be next door to a planned Route 66 Museum of Transportation.

This will bring the total number of museums in Pontiac to seven.

Truly a museum and mural city.

--RoadDog

About Goldsboro, N.C.-- Part 2: A Railroad Town and Sherman Target

There is a picture of the Kiwanis Miniature Train that operates Saturdays and Sundays from April to September in Herman Park from 1 to 5 p.m..  Herman Park is across Jackson Street from where my family lived from the 1920s.  I used to ride that train a lot as a kid.

Even though there are no longer passenger train service to Goldsboro, there are still a lot of railroad tracks that have to be crossed, many still used for freight trains.

"Goldsboro's a railroad town, built on the tracks between Wilmington and Raleigh, named after Matthew Goldsborough, a railroad man.  During the Civil War, Sherman had Goldsboro in mind when he burned through the South, hoping to get ahold of bustling tracks,  He did."

People in Goldsboro loved these tracks, but hated them as well.  One April night 91 years ago, a group of unnamed people got fed up with the dirty, noisy trains coming through the center of town, causing fires and sooting up everything and went out in the darkness and pulled the tracks up and stacked them in a neat pile in Center Street.  They even have a DeRailebration Ceremony in honor of it.

The train company sued the city, which just went ahead and paid it.

--RoadDog

Thursday, April 20, 2017

About Goldsboro, N.C.-- Part 1: It's a Railroad Thing

From the July 2016 Our State Magazine (North Carolina) by Eleanor Spicer Rice.

"Wherever you go in this Wayne County city, you'll find yourself crossing railroad tracks."

Very true.  of course, a big reason for Goldsboro's existence involved railroads.  It made the city a target for General Sherman's Army during the Civil War when it was also part of the important Wilmington and Weldon Railroad which kept Lee's Army supplied.

Goldsboro is my home city, where I was born back 65 years ago.  So, it is special to me.  My family has lived there since around 1900 and up until the end of last year, were in the same house since the 1920s.

--RoadGold

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A Cruisin' Cassette Tape "20 Great Oldies-- Vol. 12": "Don't Make Me Over"


The number after the artist is the highest the song got on Billboard's Hot 100 and then the year it was out.

SIDE 2

1.  DON'T MAKE ME OVER--  Dionne Warwick    #21   1963
2.  WATERMELON MAN--  Mongo Santamaria     #10    1963
3.  IT'S GONNA WORK OUT FINE--   Ike & Tina Turner     #14    1961

4.  EVERY BEAT OF MY HEART--  Gladys Knight & the Pips    #6    1961
5.  I SOLD MY HEART TO THE JUNKMAN--    No rank
6.  SOUL TWIST--  King Curtis     #17    1962
7.  TONIGHT'S THE NIGHT--  Shirelles      #39   1960

8.  FUNNY--  Maxine Brown     #25   1961
9.  MOON RIVER--  Jerry Butler      #11    1961
10.  CRY TO ME--  Betty Harris      #23   1963

Name That Tune (from the above songs:  "Dream-Maker, You Old Heart-Breaker."   Answer Below.  --RoadDog



"Moon River"


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

"Black Coffee and Cigarettes" Has a Mention of Route 66-- Part 2

"Black Coffee and Cigarettes" by Mighty Mo Rodgers.

I was casually listening to this song on The Surf 94.9 FM out of Myrtle Beach South Carolina when I heard mention of Route 66.  My ears perked up, of course.

Continuing with the song lyrics:

"I took a bus trip back in time

Route 66 when it was the main line

I saw teepees and motels, design like events.

And then I saw that place where we once spent,

But nostalgia ain't what it used to be.

When you took out the good parts and leave the misery.

But, if I had to do it again, you know I'd do it with you,

It was dumb like sin, yeah."

The video on You Tube has pictures of a US-66 shield as well as a Wigwam Motel.

Well Worth Listening To.  --RoadDog

A Cruising Cassette Tape "20 Great Oldies- Vol. 12: "He Will Break Your Heart"

Sure enjoy getting out in the old '85 Firebird and popping a cassette tape into the player and this is one great pre-recorded tape, featuring some songs I know about and others not so well.

The number after the artist is the highest it got on the Billboard Hot 100

SIDE ONE:

1. ANY DAY NOW--  Chuck Jackson   #23  1962
2.  YOU'LL LOSE A GOOD THING--  Barbara Lynn    #8  1962
3.  HE WILL BREAK YOUR HEART--  Jerry Butler    #7   1960

4.  POOR FOOL--  Ike & Tina Turner    #38  1962
5.  MAMA SAID--  Shirelles    #4  1961  
6.  IF YOU NEED ME--  Wilson Pickett    #64   1963
7.  STEAL AWAY--  Jimmy Hughes    #17   1964

8.  ALL IN MY MIND--  Maxine Brown    #19    1960
9.  SNAP YOUR FINGERS--  Joe Henderson      #8    1962
10.  LETTER FULL OF TEARS--  Gladys Knight & the Pips     #19   1962

This is some really fine R&B/Soul Music, even if I do say so.

Name That Tune (from the above songs):  "Met A Little Boy Named Billy Joe And Then I Almost Lost My Mind."  Answer Below.  --RoadDog



"Mama Said"


Monday, April 17, 2017

"Black Coffee and Cigarettes" Song by Mighty Mo Rodgers Mentions Route 66

This song was getting some play on Beach Music stations, especially on the Surf, 94.9 FM WVCO out of North Myrtle Beach, S.C..

I was listening to it when I heard the singer, Mighty Mo Rodgers, mention Route 66.

Here are some of the lyrics:

"I don't drink. I just smoke.  I don't gamble no more.  And I don't use no toke.

All I wanna do is be with you. Smoke some cigarettes and have some java brew.

Make it black and strong, that's what I need.

Cause when I think of love, don't you know what I bleed?

I bleed blues, and rhythm and rock 'n roll

All that funky stuff that shakes up my soul."


As you can guess, this is a blues song and a really good one.  He then goes into what he said about Route 66 and a certain motel we all love.

Give It a Listen on You Tube.

I'll write his account of a trip on 66 in the next post, tomorrow.

Bring On the Coffee and 66.  --RoadDog

Some News From Route 66-- Part 2: Slow Drags on the Route, "More Corporate Blandness, Less Mom and Pop Character"

**  The Slow Drags are a 6-piece alternative country band from Portland, Oregon, and are traveling the western United States, much of it on good old Route 66.

On May 10th, they stayed at "this cool old motor court last night called the Apache Motel" in Prescott, Arizona.  "It will soon go the way of the Do-Do bird as it is being sold and then torn down.  It's the wave of the future, more corporate blandness, less mom and pop character."

They essentially traveled Route 66 from California through to Arizona.  "We got to see some of the old billboards, hotels, gas stations and shops in Williams and Flagstaff.  It's pretty amazing to think of all the people that have traversed the route over the years, especially during the dust bowl.:"

Welcome to the Road.  --RoadDog

Some News From Route 66-- Part 1: Sprague Super Service and Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame Museum

I found these items in some old notes.  Not sure what year they are from, though.

**  May 6:  WJBC AM, Voice of McLean County says the Sprague Super Service station has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP).

**  May 9:  The Pontiac Daily Leader says the elevator work will begin at the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame Museum and the Pontiac War Museum.  The west entrance will be the main entrance for the next three weeks.

Pontiac, Museum City Now.  --RoadDog

Friday, April 14, 2017

Looking Back to 1942: Thank Goodness Sycamore's State Street Is So Wide

From the January 25, 2017, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"Citizens of Sycamore driving automobiles and the merchants as well as the city officials are thankful at this time that state Street is wider than the average smaller city thoroughfare.

"Because of the heavy snow, and the impossibility of the department of public works to remove it as rapidly as it falls, there is considerable piles on the sides of the road."

Must have Been a Lot of Snow.  --RoadDog

Route 1 Really is a Super Highway-- Part 3: Road of Many Names in Buck County

Route 1 is rarely called Route 1.

In Middleton, it is the Lincoln Highway.

In Bensalem it is Roosevelt Boulevard.

In Pennsylvania, it is County Line Road, Township Line Road, State Road, the Media Bypass, Baltimore Pike and Kenneth Oxford Bypass.

In New Rochelle, New York, it is Main Street.

Along the east coast, it is called Caribou Road, Jefferson Davis Memorial Highway, Biscayne Boulevard, Augusta Highway, Broadway, Dixie Freeway, Atlantic Highway and Boston Post Road.

Name Me a Name.  --RoadDog

Thursday, April 13, 2017

About Last Weekend: Steak 'N Shake and Bands

Just hanging around town as it were.

APRIL 7, FRIDAY--  Went to Crystal Lake and had breakfast at Steak 'N Shake in McHenry. Did some shopping and went to the Legion in Fox Lake.

APRIL 8, SATURDAY--  Breakfast buffet at St. John the Baptist in Johnsburg and presentation on Charles Lindbergh at the McHenry Area Historical Society meeting at the McHenry Savings Bank.  Shopping afterwards and yardwork and sure enjoyed the 70 degrees temperature.

Went to Sunnyside and saw several sports games on TV and watched the Central Stone Rollers band for a set.

APRIL 9, SUNDAY--  Did my usual radio shows and then yardwork, Steak 'N Shake for lunch and Jim Sieg's jam session at Sunnyside.

Plenty   to Do Around Here.  --RoadDog

N.C. January 2017-- Part 8: Radioing My Way Through N. Carolina

Continued friom March 17.  Perhaps I will get there at some time.

January 13, 2017, Friday.

I am driving through the western part of N.C., now, listening to the Classic Country station, windows down and enjoying 77 degree temperatures..

This is my fifth drive to and from North Carolina since May because of my mother's death, so I am getting quite used to the drive.  As I get east of Greensboro, I lose WBRF and switch to 850 AM out of Raleigh, which plays a mix of oldies like our MeTV Radio back in the Chicago area.

I was to meet my nephew Andy's plane from Nashville at RDU and then drive him to Topsail Beach  We drove I-40 to US-17 outside of Wilmington and took it most of the way to the beach.  We got to Hamstead at 4:40 p.m. and the traffic going both ways was almost Raleigh Rush Hour bad.

--RoadDog

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: A "Sirip" Shortage and The Mill

MARCH 12--  Warmer weather decreases sap harvest at Funks Grove Maple Sirip.  Oh NO!!  No Sirup for me!!!  How will I eat my flapjacks?

MARCH 14--  The 66 Drive-In movie theater in Carthage, Missouri, has had a change of owners.  As long as it stays open that's ok with me.

MARCH 15--  New fundraiser launched for The Mill in Lincoln, Illinois.  It is slated to reopen as a museum on April 29.  The new fundraiser is through Crowdrise Funraise.  They hope to get between $3500 and $5,000.

Still Thinking of Going There.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Route 1 Really Is a Super Highway-- Part 2

US Highway 1 was originally known as the Atlantic Highway and started out as a rough wagon road.  US-1 was created piecemeal from existing roads, much the same as all early numbered U.S. highways.

There is a 40-foot wide stretch of the road built in the mid-1800s between Buberry and Neshaming creeks.  Parts of it is known as the Byberry Pike, Benesalem Pike and Lincoln Highway.  It became a limited access highway in 1921, lengthened in 1932 and rebuilt in 1971.

--RoadDog

Route 1 Is Really a Super Highway-- Part 1

From the Buck's County Courier Times by Brian Scheid.

Us Route 1 is very congested in Bucks County (near Philadelphia).  You can go from Canada to Key West, Florida, on this road.

The original path of US-1 in Bucks County can be traced all the way back to 1793

The northern part of it goes through New York City with a population of 8.2 million to Littleton, Maine, with a population of 971.

It hugs the east coast and passes through nearly every major coastal city.  It has twists and turns and sometimes is just a two-lane highway and at others a four lane expressway.

Bucks County has 14 miles of US-1/

--RoadDog

Monday, April 10, 2017

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: Route 66 Thief and Radiator Springs

MARCH 10--  Woman stole $313,000 in Petrified Forest National Park entrance fees.  She will serve one year and repay the money.  She did this between 2010 and 2016 when she was responsible for accounting the entrance fees.  Like I'm sure she'll pay the money back.

MARCH 11--  Radiator Springs cast will make an appearance in "Cars 3."  Hope it's not just a brief one.  I liked those townie cars.  The more Radiator, the better, I always say.

The Route 66 News site also has a link to the movie characters and places real life and people that were their basis.

--RpadDog


News From Along Route 66, March 2017: Illinois Route 66 Goes Big in England

MARCH 8--  Exporting the buzz of Route 66 to England, the Outside Collective Group has made a big Route 66 mural in the side of The Hat and Feathers Pub on the corner of Clerkenwell and Goswell roads in London.  The mural measures in at 52-feet high.

Route 66 places featured on it are Illinois' Paul Bunyan statue in Atlanta,  a gas pump from the Soulsby gas station in Mt. Olive, the Brooks Catsup bottle in Collinsville, the Cozy Dog Drive-In mascot in Springfield, the Chicago Theatre marque in Chicago and an Illinois Route 66 shield.

Impressed Me.  --RoadDog

Friday, April 7, 2017

About Last Weekend: B-Ball, Beer and Bands

MARCH 31ST:  We went to Riverside Pub on the Fox River at Burton's Bridge (Ill-176) for lunch and then found four other places too crowded to go to and ended up at Sunnyside Tavern in Johnsburg.

APRIL 1ST:  Actually got some yardwork done before going to the Fox Lake American Legion where we saw the duo Honeymooners from 3 to 6 p.m..  Where else ya gonna get entertainment on a Saturday afternoon on April Fool's Day?

Sunnyside Tavern was a madhouse and we ended up at half-Times where we watched Gonzaga win in their Final Four game.  Came home and watched Carolina win a close one in Margaritaville while listening to the Ultimate Jukebox.  The two Final Four contests today were some great games.

APRIL 2ND:  Listened to Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots on WDRV.  he played "Look Through Any Window" by the Hollies.  This was either the first or second 45 I ever bought.  The other one was "Any Way You Want It" by the Dave Clark Five.  Those two songs sure bring back lots of memories.

We then went to Sunnyside Tavern in Johnsburg where we saw the Blackhawks lose and then, at 4, Stevie G put on a solo performance of mellow rock.

Good Times All the Time Around Here.  --RoadDog

PCB 2017: Finally Arrive Home: Eagle Nest, Gas Gouge, Getting Colder

MARCH 2, 2017

From Terre Haute to I-74, we get on Indiana Highway 63, which is four land the whole way.  We got gas at the Pilot Station on Indiana 63 and I-74 exit.for $2.20.  Took the usual I-74 west past Champaign-Urbana to Illinois Highway 47 at Mahomet and then north to Woodstock.

We noticed that gas prices had also increased in Illinois from two weeks ago.  Must be the pre-summer driving season gas gouge that Big Oil and the GRBs like to do on an annual basis.

I have always wanted to get something to eat at the Eagle Nest Restaurant in Forrest, Illinois, and this was the time to do it.  The food was good and reasonable.  I always like to eat at places I drive by so often and this is one of them.

The rest of the trip home, the temperature on the odometer continued to drop until it got to 32 degrees and we began seeing traces of snow.  This is a big drop from yesterday's travel where the temperatures were as high as 78 degrees.

We got home after having driven 2,178 miles.

Love To Travel, But Just As Good To get Home.  --RoadDog

Looking Back to 1917: Not Enough Dodge Cars

From the January 25, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"A representative of the Williamson Motor Company who deals in Dodge automobiles was here yesterday and says that the motor car dealers and makers are feeling the car shortage as badly as any other interest.

"The production of the factories is so large and the demand for the machines so great, while facilities for moving the machines in freight cars are so small that the flow of cars from factory to consumer is badly choked."

The growing popularity of the automobile.

The Problem Is Not the Factories, It is Getting the Cars to the Customers.  --RoadDog

Thursday, April 6, 2017

PCB 2017: Through Indiana

We crossed the Ohio River at Henderson and now ere in Evansville, a city that sure has a lot of stoplights on its stretch of US-41.  And they continue way north to the I-64 interchange.  This is a town (along with Terre Haute) which could really use a bypass.  But, one of these days I would like to spend some time looking at things around town.

But, once through the Evansville area, it is clear cruising, other than an occasional stoplight the whole way (except, of course, Terre Haute) until we got off at I-74.  I had hoped to get gas in Terre Haute, home of Indiana State University, but it was $2.34 to $2.36, a bit higher than what we had been paying.  We were getting mighty low on gas by the time we got to I-74.

--RiadDog

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: Westport Lodge reopens As Enlight Inn in Joplin

MARCH 5--  Westport Lodge in Joplin, Missouri is to hold a grand reopening on March 6th.  .  It is now the Enlight Inn, a wellness center, motel and cafe.

The Westport Lodge was built in 1947 and located at North Main and Fountain Street.

It is the last motor court in Joplin.

Always glad to see a neat old place repurposed as opposed to being torn down.

--RoadDog


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: The Holbrook, Arizona, Wigwam Motel

These news items are taken from the Route 66 News site, which goes into much more extensive detail.  I just write about the ones of special interest to me.

MARCH 4--  There was deep background on the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona.

**  Closed for almost seven years  (1980-1987)

**  Had problems getting people to stay in it when it opened in 1950 because of competition from the many other motel;s and hotels in Holbrook.

But I doubt any of them could be more unique.

We were disappointed that we arrived in Holbrook way too early to stay there during our 2006 drive across all of Route 66.  The same thing happened to us at the one in California.

--RoadDog

News From Along Route 66, March 2017: Section of 66 Closed in the Mojave Desert

MARCH 2--   A section of Route 66 in the Mojave Desert just east of Amboy will be closed until until mid-September for bridge construction.

Two new bridges are to be built as well as road improvement.

--RoadDig

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Looking Back to 1942: Increased Bus Service Because of the War

From the January 11, 2017, MidWeek "looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"The Charter Coach Company today was issued a temporary certificate by the Illinois Commerce Commission to operate motor bus service until May 20, 1942, between DeKalb, Sycamore, Genoa, Marengo, Woodstock, McHenry, Volo, Round Lake,  Grays Lake and Waukegan."

Bus service will become even more important because of wartime shortages and gasoline rationing.

These towns were in DeKalb, McHenry and Lake counties in northeastern Illinois.

--RoadDog

Looking Back to 1942: Route 64 To Be Widened

From the January 11, 2017. MidWeek "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"Sycamore highway enthusiasts are in an optimistic mood today.  They think it is highly possible that Route 64 might be widened from Chicago to the Mississippi as a war measure."

Moving Troops and Supplies.  --RoadDog

Monday, April 3, 2017

Gasoline Goodies: Downtown Pilot Mountain, N.C.

From the October 2015 Our State Magazine by Susan Stafford.

A 6,400 square foot museum in downtown Pilot Mountain, North Carolina features one man's passion for everything petroleum.

Pilot Mountain is just south of Mt. Airy, N.C., which served as the basis for Andy Griffith's Mayberry.  They would often go over to Mount Pilot on the show.  Pilot Mountain is named for a very interesting mountain as well.

Some really great photos accompany the article as well.

This is the collection of Thornton Beroth, whose father was the Amoco distributor in nearby Winston-Salem. and also had the Amoco-branded Four brothers Food Stores.

The Pilot collection is one of te largest if not THE largest petroleum collections in the country.

Maybe If You Go You Might See Good Ol' Barn and Andy Come Over From Mayberry.  --RoadDog

Looking Back to 1917: Save Your Nickels, Buy a Car

From the January 11, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago.

"Gus Kirchner, proprietor of Kirchener's Drug Store buys a Ford with 7,230 Buffalo nickels.   January 1, 1916, Mr. Kirchener started saving Buffalo nickels.  Every Buffalo nickel that was presented at the store was saved.  In one year's time he collected 7,568.  With 7,230 he bought a Ford roadster.

This car will be used for delivery purposes."

--RoadDog


Saturday, April 1, 2017

I'd Go Out On My Harley...But

From the February 8, 2017, Pickles comic strip.

1.  Earl is sitting on a park bench with his friend and says:  "Today's the kind of day when I feel like just hopping on my Harley and take off."

2.  Then he continues:  "If my wife would let me."

3.  "And I had a Harley."

4.  "And my hemorrhoids weren't killing me."

Not me.  I'm going out on my Harlet right now.  April You-Know-What.

Well, With Me, As Much As I'd Love to Go Out On a Motorcycle, I'm Too Scared of Them to Do It.  --RoadDog

PCB 2017: It's All About the Bradford Pear Trees Blooming

The Pennyrile Parkway is limited access the whole way through the state and an easy ride.  I am still amazed that it was built as a tollway, with the promise that once it was paid off, the tolls would be dropped.  And, they REALLY did!!

The Bradford pear trees were blooming all along the road, and especially in and around Madisonville.  This town could be named the Bradford Pear Capital of the United States.  There are no prettier blooming trees anywhere, even the cherry trees.  There is a Bradford Pear Lane in the city.  I don't know if the numbers of these trees in this town were accidental or if they were planted on purpose.  Either way, it is a striking view.

If I lived there I'd push for a Bradford Pear Festival this time of the year.

Bradford pear trees are among my favorite.  Those gorgeous blooms in the spring and then they are generally the very last trees to lose their leaves in the fall and turn that beautiful russet red color.

Once you get to Henderson, Kentucky, at the northern end of the Pennyrile Parkway, you lose the limited access and hit some stoplights in a commercial district before crossing the Ohio River into Evansville, Indiana.

Bradford Pear Tree Capital of the United States  --RoadDog

Looking Back to 1966: Illinois Highway 23 Completed Between Sycamore and Genoa

From the December 28, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

1966, 50 Years Ago.

"After months of detour problems Route 23 between Sycamore and Genoa was opened for traffic this morning.  Grades have been lowered, the highway shoulders are broad and curves are gentler.

"Just south of Genoa where the highway crossed the Illinois Central tracks a newer and wider viaduct has been constructed."

This is a part of Illinois Highway 23 which i have written a lot about with its stretch between Sycamore and DeKalb being turned into a super four lane highway in 1941 (including the last post).  This is the route we now use to get from home to DeKalb for NIU activities so as to avoid the Huntley Horror.

--RoadDog

Friday, March 31, 2017

Looking Back to 1941: The New DeKalb-Sycamore Road

From the December 28, 2016, MidWeek (Dekalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

"Now that the 'closed' signs have been removed from both ends of the new DeKalb-Sycamore road some details of changes that have come to pass along its right of way are noticeable.

"Many have not noted that fact that a gateway is missing at Hopkins Park.  The wide central entrance to DeKalb's park has been done away with.  The gateway pillars have been removed and a curbing built across the former approach.

"Replacing the center entrance are two entrances, one at the north and the other at the south ends of the park."

--RoadDog

Thursday, March 30, 2017

News From Along Route 66, February 2017: The Gasconade Bridge

FEBRUARY 24--  Missouri is going to build a new bridge next to the Gasconade Bridge which is really good news.  We were at the Save-the-Bridge rally last April.

However, Route 66ers have to find an organization or entity to take over the running of the old bridge or the state might go back and decide to remove it.

Sure Glad That It Appears, Anyway, That the Old Bridge Will Remain.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

News From Along Route 66, February 2017: Lots Going On In Illinois

These stories are taken from the Route 66 News site which goes into much greater detail, has pictures, and also covers a lot more Route 66 items.  I just write about the ones of particular interest to me.

FEBRUARY 16--  The Tropics sign in Lincoln, Illinois, may get erected near its original site by next year.  If not there, I would say put it up by the welcome center or even the Mill.

FEBRUARY 17--  The Sprague Super service Station in Normal, Illinois, will likely reopen in May.  Looking forward to visiting it.  And again, I am really happy seeing Bloomington-Normal starting to embrace their Route 66 heritage.

FEBRUARY 24--  The Mill grand opening is set for April 29, 2017, in Lincoln, Illinois.  There will be a parade and all sorts of other things going on around it.

Lincoln is another town doing all that it can for its Route 66 heritage and is to be commended.

Lots Going On in Illinois.  --RoadIll

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

PCB 2017: Returning Home, Kentucky's Pennyrile Parkway

MARCH 2, 2017  Thursday.

We were taking a way home that we haven't driven in awhile.  This way we can go without passing through (l)ouisville.  There is no excuse for what they did with that Confederate statue.  I will continue to stay out of this place.

We took I-24 the short distance into Kentucky and then got on the Pennyrile Parkway.  This is always amazing in that, unlike Illinois, when the Pennyrile Parkway was established as a toll road, it was understood that it would cease to be a toll road once it was paid for.  In 1992, it was paid for and the toll booths removed.  That would NEVER happen in Illinois!!

The Pennyrile Parkway was the original name, but now the name of Kentucky's 51st governor, Edward T. Breathitt.  I was uinable to find out how it came to be called Pennyrile, though there is a state park by that name.

The Pennyrile Parkway runs alongside and on the US-41 and near the northern end is signed as I-69.

--RoadDog

Monday, March 27, 2017

PCB 2017: Clarksville, Tn., for the Night

As said, traffic was mighty heavy essentially the whole way to Clarksville.  Some people must commute this distance every work day.  At least it never came to a complete stop.

We got a room at the Baymont Hotel, off I-24.

We then drove around looking for a place to have a relaxing drink and perhaps engage in conversation with some locals.  We found a place called Overtime nearby and pulled in for that cocktail.  This is a sports bar and we saw East Carolina defeat Connecticut in a late season basketball game as well as part of the Blackhawks hockey game.

One guy in there was originally from Chicago and happy to see us in out Blackhawk gear.  We talked with a guy from Charlotte, North Carolina, in town on business.  he said he would be going to Panama City Beach next week on another business trip and we told him about the Driftwood Lodge where we had just spent 13 days.  He liked the idea of a smaller mom and pop place and said he'd look into it.

Good Night's Sleep After a Long Drive.  --RpadDog

Friday, March 24, 2017

PCB 2017: On to "Last Train From Clarksville," Tennessee

Traffic was heavy, but at least moving along all the 30-40 miles to Clarksville, Tennessee.

We've often joked about whether or not this Clarksville was the one the Monkees were singing about in their big hit "Last Train to Clarksville," their first hit that went all the way to #1 in the fall of 1966.

I looked the song up in Wikipedia and found it was written by the famed team of Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart (Boyce and Hart) and, although many people think the name Clarksville comes from this Tennessee town because of its nearness to the huge Fort Campbell complex, home of the 101st Airborne, writer Bobby Hart says it isn't.

I always thought Clarksville was in California, myself.  I looked up towns with the name Clarksville and found there are quite a few.  A short list of them:  Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, Arkansas, Ohio, Texas, New Hampshire, Virginia, Maryland, Indiana and Illinois.

Must be another of those "Simpsons" Springfield things.

Last Train to RoadDog.  --RoadDog