Friday, June 22, 2018

Lincoln, Illinois' Mill to Host Activities for Tropics Relighting

From the June 19, 2018, Route 66 News.

Along with all the hoopla surrounding the relighting of the Tropics sign in Lincoln, Illinois, another of Lincoln's iconic Route 66 places will also be open and hosting many things in conjunction with it.

From 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The Mill, now a museum, will be open.

Route 66 Roadie Rod Ferguson of Hot Rod Travels will be featured as a guest presenter and will have a display of celebrity autographs that he has collected.  One of those is that of Jerry Muren, the last living of the "Wizard of Oz" munchkins who died May 24 of this year.  He also has one from Adam West, TV's "Batman."

Also, he has autographs by Ernie Edwards of the Pighip and Bob Waldmire.

The Mill Museum has an extensive Tropics collection including an original dining table and chairs and rare Tropics documents like menus, postcards, matchbooks and photographs.

We were just at The Mill on June 10 as part of the Illinois Route 66 Association's Motor Tour and they also have a big collection of PigHip, Ernie Edwards items along with, of course, The Mill.  We did find out that Haley's downtown was no longer open, but you can still get The Mill's famous schnitzel sandwiches at a bar nearby across from the old gas station.

Lincoln, a Town That Knows Its Route 66 Heritage.  --RoadDog

Most Iconic Foods of the Indy 500-- Part 1: Mom Unser's Chili

From the May 25, 2018, Indianapolis Star by Liz Biro.

Indy 500 fans will eat around 20,000 pounds of fries on race day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  Eating food is a major part of the experience.  And, this is considering that you are allowed to bring food and drinks (alcohol included) into the race track.

That is just food bought at the track.

This past running of the race, No. 102, the places serving food actually gave out of burgers and hot dogs, at least in our area.

Here are some foods closely associated with the race.  Mom Unser's Chili, Breaded Tenderloin Sandwiches, Biscuits and Gravy, St. Elmo Shrimp Cocktail, Root Beer and Onion Rings and more.


Thursday, June 21, 2018

Tropics Sign To Be Relit This Sunday

I know that I usually am a month behind on my Along 66  blog entries, but I will move this and the next blog up to present as they are very special to me.

From the June 17 Route 66 News.

The Tropics sign is returning to Lincoln, Illinois.  Ace Sign Company out of Springfield, Illinois, returned the sign on Friday, June 15 to its original home.  Workers put it up, but it no longer will mark the Tropics Restaurant, but will be in the parking lot of the McDonald's which now sits on the site.

There will be a relighting ceremony on Sunday, June 24.

The Tropics Restaurant had been closed for years and the building was torn down in 2017.

We just missed it being put back up as we were on the Illinois Route 66 Association Motor Tour over the weekend of June 9-10 and drove through Lincoln.

We are glad that we hot to eat and watch a Bears game at the original restaurant and were sad every time we drove by the long-closed place.

There is a good picture of the sign at the Route 66 News site as well as more information.

So Glad We Will Get That Sign Back.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Along 66, May 2018: Red Cedar Inn and Fender's River Road Resort

MAY 14--  The Red Cedar Inn building in Pacific, Missouri, was bought by the city in 2017 for $290,000.  It was built in 1932 and abruptly closed in 2005.

We had driven by it several times when it was open and still a restaurant and had planned to stop in for a bite.  But, it closed before we got a chance to do it.  Goes to show that you should always stop by places when you can.

Plans are to open  it as a visitors center/Route 66 museum.

MAY 18--  Someone has made a video about Fender's River Road Resort in Needles, California.  It is right on the Colorado River.  When we went all the way out west on Route 66 in 2006, we drove by this place and next time we plan to stop for the night.

Looking Forward to the Red Cedar Inn.  --RoadDog

Along 66, May 2018: Illinois Route 66 Bike Way in McLean County

MAY 9--  Route 66 Bikeway in Illinois gets grant for extension.  McLean County received a $1.92 million grant from IDOT to extend the present bike path along old Route 66 by 1.1 miles.

It will eventually be 16.5 miles from Towanda in the north, through Bloomington-Normal south to Shirley and Funks Grove.

So glad that Bloomington-Normal and McLean County is FINALLY taking advantage of their Route 66 heritage.


Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The Wall That Heals, Vietnam Veterans Memorial-- Part 4

The Wall Replica

The replica Wall is three-fourths scale and 375 feet in length.  It stands 7.5 feet tall at its tallest  point at the apex.  Visitors experience The Wall rising above them as they walk toward the apex.

The wall replica is constructed of Avonite, a synthetic granite and its 140 numbered panels are supported by an aluminum frame.

Machine engraving of the 58,000 names along with modern LED lighting provide readability of The Wall day and night.

Names are arranged in order of date of casualty and alphabetically on each day, beginning in the center.for the earliest deaths.

Monday, June 18, 2018

The Wall That Heals, Vietnam Veterans Memorial-- Part 3: By the Numbers

22 years, 9 months:  Average age of service members on the Wall

15:  Age of the youngest service member on the Wall

400,000+:  Items left at the wall  (and there were a lot left while it was in McHenry

31:  Sets of brothers on the Wall

3:  Sets of fathers and sons on the Wall

246:  Most casualty deaths for one day.  January 31, 1968  The Tet Offensive

The Wall That Heals, Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall-- Part 2: By the Numbers

Here are some numbers from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Replica Wall in McHenry, Illinois over Memorial Day weekend:

58,318:  Names on the Wall

1,500+:  Service members unaccounted for from the Vietnam War

8:  Women on the Wall

375 feet:  Length of the Wall That Heals

600:  Cities The Wall That Heals has visited

Sunday, June 17, 2018

The Wall That Heals, Vietnam Veterans Memorial Replica, Comes to McHenry, Illinois-- Part 1

When I returned from the Indy 500 race on May 28, we got back in time for us to go over to McHenry Township Park by the Moose Lodge and see the wall.  I was hoping to get there in time as I've seen this replica wall before and it is a real moving experience.

The Vietnam War was a major part of my growing up.  It started when I was in 7th grade and went clear through my graduating from college in 1973.  I thought we'd still be fighting it as there was no end in sight and the U.S. did not appear to be doing what was needed to end it.

And, of course, there was the draft.  I came really close to having to go.  I would have had I been called.

I've seen the real wall in Washington, D.C., as well as a replica of it in McHenry many years ago at the VFW.  All times, I said to myself that I wouldn't get broken up.  All times that did not happen.

This Is One Really Moving Experience.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Lots Happening On Route 66 in Illinois and Missouri Last Weekend and This One

Last week, Liz and I went to Lebanon, Missouri and stayed at the Munger-Moss Motel for three days.  We hit all the Route 66 places from Pacific to there.  Lebanon and LaClede County have a really great booklet out that has every Route 66 place on it (and there are a lot).

We were out that way because of the Illinois Route 66 Motor Tour on Saturday and Sunday, June 9 and 10.  The Munger Moss and Lebanon are having their own Route 66 celebration tonight and Saturday.  Tonight, the party will be at the Munger-Moss and Saturday it will be downtown.

Last Saturday was the Illinois Route 66 Blue Carpet festival with a lot of towns between Litchfield and Edwardsville participating, as well as Edwardsville's 21st annual Route 66 Festival.  Also, the annual Illinois Route 66 Association Motor Tour took place, with a double crossing of the old Chain of Rocks Bridge as a highlight.

And, the Tropics sign in Lincoln, Illinois, will be turned on this month!!!

Sure Wish We Could Have Gone to the Munger-Moss/Lebanon Parties.  RoadDog

Thursday, June 14, 2018

States That Joined the Union During the Civil War

Since today is U.S. Flag Day, there were three states that joined the United States during the war years, causing stars to be added to the union.

1859-1861--  33 stars when Oregon joined

1861-1863--  34 stars when Kansas joined

1863-1865--  35 stars when West Virginia joined

Wikipedia has Nevada joining October 31, 1864


Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Indy 500's Carb Day: Blues Traveler and Train

The cost to attend Carb Day is $30 and I think that is quite reasonable for all that you get, especially the concert at the end.

This year, we saw Blues Traveler opening for Train.  I knew a few songs Train has done, but listened a lot before I went to You Tube and found that I heard another couple songs.  I don't listen much to today's music anymore, or even music from the 2000s.

Train is an excellent group and I even am looking for a CD of their music.

Blues Traveler is an good band that I was familiar with, but they jam too much.  I figure that with a name like "Blues" that is to be expected.


Indy 500's Carb Day-- Part 3: Indy Lights Freedom 100 Race and the Pit Stop Challenge

The Indy 500 practice runs for an hour starting at 11 a.m..  Lots of stops are made to work on details and toward the end, they cars are actually racing.

At 12:30 p.m., we have the Indy Lights Freedom 100 Race, involving smaller Indy cars driven by young drivers who want to be Indy car drivers.  This involves 40 laps around the track.

Along with the running of the Indy cars one final time before the race (they don't practice on the Saturday before race day) there is also the Pit Stop Challenge.  This event was added in 1977.  Crews go through a full pit stop in practice and competition for the big race.

They work on the actual cars with the actual drivers who roar into the pit stop.  This, however, gets a bit boring after awhile so we usually go back to the RV for a bit, before returning for the concert.


Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Indy 500's Carb Day-- Part 2: The "Shake Down"

But, the Indy 500 is steeped in tradition so even though no Indy cars had a carburetor since 1963, the name continues.

Carburetion Day was held on randomly selected  days the week before the big race.  It was not open to the public until the mid-1950s.

In 1969, it was held on Thursday and continued intl 2005 when it was moved to Friday.

Carb Day dives teams and drivers the opportunity to "shake down" their cars and make sure it is mechanically sound.


Monday, June 11, 2018

Indy 500's Carb Day-- Part 1: When a Carb is Not a Carb

From the May 25, 2018, Indianapolis Star "Why it's called Carb Day when Indy cars don't use carburetors" by Dawn Mitchell.

Carb Day at the Indy 500 is on the Friday before the race and is not about loading up on pasta, well perhaps the carbs in those beers.  It is actually about the race cars, but has grown into something a whole lot bigger.

We've been to the last  three Carb Days, now that the folks I go with are retired from teaching.  And, we had to overcome the objection of one person, but she now loves it.  This is a fun-filled day, costs $30 and is worth every bit of it in my estimation.

But, you do know that those race cars that will be tooling around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday in the Indy 500 do not have carburetors anymore.

More On That In the Next Post.  --RoadCarb

Sunday, June 10, 2018

2018 Route 66 Trip: Just Got Back

We just hot back a few minutes ago from a trip on Route 66 from Dwight, Illinois, to Lebanon Missouri.

The trip covered 1,156 miles, three cities and three motels:  Route 66 Hotel in Springfield, Illinois, Munger-Moss Motel in Lebanon,  Missouri and Super 8 in Pontoon Beach, Illinois.  The last two days included the Illinois Route 66 Motor Tour.

We saw a lot of stuff we'd seen before as well as many things that were new.

We ate and drank lots and lots.

I had  no posts over the last six days as we had really big problems with our laptops.

Major Fun for Us.  --RoadDog

Monday, June 4, 2018

Along 66, May 2018: Illinois' Red Carpet Corridor and Lebanon's Murals

MAY 5--  The Illinois Route 66 Red Carpet Corridor Festival was held this Saturday.  The event covers a 90 mile stretch of the famous road from Joliet to Towanda (by Bloomington-Normal).  This year it is to be just one day instead of Sat-Sun..

And, they promise to have more collectibles in each town.  You get a collectible in each town.  Last year we went on it and by Sunday, every place we went was out of them.

MAY 8--  The Nelson family unveiled the latest mural in Lebanon, Missouri.  It is in Boswell Park and this mural shows the long-gone Nelson Tavern and Nelson's Dream Village Motel.

We'll be seeing it this week while staying at the Munger-Moss Motel.


"Unaccountable" Car Fire in DeKalb in 1918

From the May 16, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"William Van Artsdale of Malta came to DeKalb and left his auto standing on the Lincoln Highway, opposite the Princess theater.  When ready to return home, the car caught fire in some unaccountable way and an alarm was turned in from Box 21, which when received at the electric plant, necessitated the blowing of the whistle.

"The fire boys had little to do as the flames were subdued by bystanders and small fire extinguishers in short order."

The Fun of Driving Those Old Cars.  German Spies? --RoadDog

Sunday, June 3, 2018

They'll Never Finish That Garage

From the April 25, 2018, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"The work at the First street (and Lincoln Highway) garage being erected by E,P. Ellwood and Perry Fisk is progressing at a rapid rate at the present time, and the building will soon be ready for the interior finishers.

"The floors have been laid, and today Swanson brothers electrical contractors have had a force of men at work on the inside wiring."

I have been writing about this garage being built since they began building it in the summer of 1917.


Saturday, June 2, 2018

Paige Cars Get New Showroom in DeKalb in 1918

From the May 2, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"The firm of Noren & Johnson, selling the Paige Cras, which has been operating in the Corkins basement, will move in the next few days to the vacant building at 446 East Lincoln Highway next to the laundry.

"The new rooms will give the auto sellers a better office and display room and make it much more convenient for the handling of cars.  The east Lincoln Highway place has been operated by Mr. Jackman, as a wind mill repair shop.

Buying Those Paige Cars.  --RoadDog

A Street Car-Ford Accident in 1918

From the May 23, 2018, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"The DeKalb-Sycamore electric car and a Fort car belonging to A. Montinson, living south of DeKalb, came together this morning at Seventh street, or rather the Ford ran into the street car broadside, the impression of the radiator being plainly visible in the middle of the street car.

"The 'Henry' was badly damaged, while considerable paint was removed from the street car, but otherwise not a great deal of damage was reported."

I imagine "Henry" must refer to Henry Ford.


Friday, June 1, 2018

Along 66, May 2018: A Motel and Murals

These are taken from the Route 66 News site, which has more information and pictures.  I just pick the stories of most interest to me, but if you want to know what is going on anywhere along 66, check out that site.

MAY 1--  The new owners pledge to restore the Hill Top Motel in Kingman, Arizona.  The place has a neat looking sign.  Always glad to have an old motel brought back.

MAY 2--  Miami, Oklahoma, adds five murals to its downtown.

Well, If I can Ever Learn How to Pronounce Miami, Oklahoma-Style.  --RoadDog

Rough Railroad Crossing a Hundred Years Ago in DeKalb

From the May 30, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Aho.

"Automobile drivers of DeKalb and the community are cautioned about the dangers of driving over the Seventh Street crossing, until such time as the proper repairs are made there.

"A crossing plank for one of the side tracks crossing has become loose and one end is protruding about four to six inches above the remainder of the crossover.  Driving over the crossing rapidly and not seeing this obstruction might cause a serious accident."

What!!  Rough Railroad Crossings a Hundred Years Ago!!  Who'd a Thunk It.  --RoadDog

Historic National Road Yard Sale Is Underway: US-40

From the May 26, 2018, Indy Star "Yardsales for miles coming next week" by Jason Truitt Richmond Indiana Palladium.

Runs Wednesday to Sunday and will mark its 15th anniversary.  Founder and chair Patricia McDonald came up with the idea to celebrate the bicentennial of the authorization of the National Road, the country's first highway built with federal funds.

The first year, 2003, the yard sale stretched just from Richmond to Knightstown along US-40, the numbered road that replaced it in 1926, in Indiana.  The very next year, it stretched all the way across Indiana to Terre Haute.  The third year it really took off and went from Baltimore to St. Louis.

In just three years, it went from 37 miles to more than 800.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Along 66, April 2018: The Mill and The Cop

These stories taken from the Route 66 News site which goes into greater detail and even has pictures.  I only write about the ones I am most interested in.

APRIL 30--  Recollections of the early days of The Mill.  Four people who were there when the Blue Mill opened in Lincoln, Illinois, had their stories told in a 2007 interview by Geoff Ladd.  Included are the stories of Robert and Norma McAfee.

Looking forward to seeing the newly reopened, well, a year ago, Mill while on the Route 66 Association of Illinois Motor Tour two weekends from now.

APRIL 30--  Longtime Illinois state trooper Chester Henry died at age 86.  He served 1957-1984 out of the Illinois State Police District 6 headquartered in the art deco building that looked like a pistol when viewed from above in Pontiac, Illinois.

He wrote  a book, "Route 66, My Home Away From Home" and was inducted into the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame in 1993.

Sure Will Be Nice When They Find A Way to Do Something With That Building.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Along 66, April 2018: Blue Whale Vandalized and 92nd Birthday of 66

APRIL 28--  Vandalism at the Blue Whale by Catoosa, Oklahoma.  Evidently, nothing was done to the whale itself but picnic tables were thrown into the water.  Security cameras will now be put in place for when no one is there.

The Blue Whale dates to 1972 and was built by Hugh Davis and is a must-see for anyone traveling on Route 66.

APRIL 29--  Route 66 birthday party set for Monday in Springfield, Missouri, as they say, "The Birthplace of Route 66."

It will be the 92nd anniversary of our favorite highway.  The commemoration will be held downtown where the number 66 was received in 1926.

But, Why the Whale?  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Along 66, April 2018: An Endangered List and New Baseball Team

APRIL 27--  The Nite Spot Cafe in Fairmont City, Illinois, is on the Landmarks Illinois Annual Most-Endangered list.  The town is located outside St. Louis.  It has a neat-looking neon sign.

APRIL 28--  The Joplin, Missouri, baseball team's new logo contains Route 66.  They play at Joe Becker Stadium and the name 66ers was proposed, but the name "Miners" was selected, but Route 66 will be appearing in the team's logo.

The team plays in the Independent Southwest League.  They had a MLB minor league team called the Joplin Miners from 1902 to 1954.  Mickey Mantle played there.


Monday, May 28, 2018

Running the Cars-- Part 1: On the Road

I just got back from my annual trip to Indianapolis where I spent my time from Thursday to today.  For someone who didn't use to like any kind of car racing, I am essentially hooked on it now.


My 67th birthday.

Up early and packed then went on the internet to post to all blogs.  I head previously written out the entries.

Went to Sue and Paul's house at 9:30 a.m. and put my stuff aboard their RV and then we were off.  We took Rollins Road to Grand Avenue and stopped for our breakfast of champions, sliders from White Castle, well, actually a lot of sliders as in a 30-pack Crave Case.

We ate on the way south on the Tri-State Tollway, and past Great America with all those roller coasters.

Thanks I-65, Not Nearly So Jaw-Shattering!!  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Along Lincoln Highway, April 2018: A Diner Gets a New Home

From the April 13, 2018, Trib Live  "1938 Diner moved to new home at Lincoln Highway museum" Jeff Himler.

It was a three mile move to the Lincoln Highway Experience Museum.

A tourist cabin that was at Routes 259 and 30 in Ligonier Township was also moved to the museum.


Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Along 66, April 2018: Catsup Bottles, Tumbleweeds and Trail of Tears

APRIL 23--  The World's Largest Catsup Bottle Festival is coming to an end in Collinsville, Illinois.  I always like a festival, but never got to be at this one.  Guess I won't now.

APRIL 24-- Tumbleweeds invade the Route 66 town of Victorville, California.  They were described as very sticky and there were sure a lot of them that piled up by houses.  I had seen video on TV news in a bar, but didn't know that was Route 66.

APRIL 25--  The Trail of Tears Memorial in Missouri reopened.  Marie Rydberg is behind its rebirth.  Larry Baggett made it.  It honors the Cherokee forced removal to Oklahoma.

We had watched the place deteriorate over the years but it is so nice to see its back.


Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Anita King-- Part 3: Her Cross-Country Drive in 1915

In 1915, she decided to put her automobile driving experience to the test and become the first woman to drive alone across the United States..  She had the backing of her studio boss Jesse L. Lasky and his newly formed Paramount Pictures.

They got Kissel Motor Company to provide a car that was fitted out with Firestone Tires.

The whole undertaking was dubbed "The Paramount Girl" and amidst a lot of publicity, she left Paramount Studio in Hollywood on August 25, 1915.  The Los Angeles Times reported her only companions would be a rifle and six-shooter.


Monday, May 21, 2018

Anita King-- Part 2: Quite a Woman For Her Time

In 1908 she moved to the West Coast where she developed a fascination for fast cars after working as a model in a California auto show.  She learned to drive in the early 1910s and began competing in auto races.  She had an accident in a race in Phoenix and gave up racing.

The Hollywood film industry was growing fast at this time and she returned to acting and took her stage name of Anita King.

She began getting small roles with Jesse L. Lasky's Feature Play Company under director Cecil B. DeMille which led to her getting supporting roles in comedy films.


Anita King and Her Kissell Kar: 1915 49-Day Drive from Hollywood to New York City

Back in 2015, I wrote about Kissell Kars and this woman.  I had done further research in Wikipedia on Anita King.

August 14, 1884 -- June 10, 1963

American stunt driver, actress and thoroughbred racehorse owner.  In 1915, she made an unaccompanied 49-day auto drive from Hollywood to New York City

Born Anna Keppen to German immigrants in Michigan City, Indiana.  Her father committed suicide when she was 12 and her mother died two years later.  She was an impoverished orphan along with her siblings.

In her late teens she moved to Chicago.  There, the attractive girl found employment doing modeling and acting minor parts in the theater.

Kind of an Amelia Earhart.  --RoadDog

Along 66, April 2018: Roadies and Volunteers Needed Also a Sculpture

APRIL 20--  The National Trust for Historical Preservation is seeking roadies for a major cross-country campaign to preserve Route 66.  And, they will pay you to do it.   Shoot, I'd do it for free but you have to be tech savvy, which I ain't.

APRIL 22--  A Route 66 sculpture has been created by Riverton High School students in Kansas.  It is twenty feet tall and features Kansas 66.

Now, if I just could keep getting lost in traffic circle.

APRIL 23--  Hundreds of volunteers are needed to help clean up the Joliet Prison in Illinois  Between 200-300 skilled tradesmen are needed as well.  The prison is 160 years old and quite a striking structure.

Wonder if they need an unskilled person like me?

Will Work For Free.  --RoadDog

Friday, May 18, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 18: A Mardi Gras Parade in Panama City


Unfortunately, whenever the clouds rolled in, it got considerably cooler.

Drove to Panama City for the St. Andrews annual Mardi Gras parade.  St. Andrews was the original settlement here.  We got there just before the parade started at noon and parked near where we were last year which is near the start of the parade.  This makes it easier to leave for us as we are headed out while others are still watching it.  Avoids the traffic jam.

They had around 30 floats and lots and lots of beads, of course.  We ended up with quite a bead collection, even though we were standing back from the curb and weren't really trying to catch them.  Those at the curb and begging for beads were making quite a haul and some had twenty or more layers of beads.

We always love the pageantry and fun.  The people on the floats are dressed alike in colorful garb and there are quite a few people walking in the parade.

Besides the Warm, we are here for the two Mardi Gras celebrations today and next Saturday in Panama City Beach when the parade goes right by our motel, Driftwood Lodge.

Oh, Give Me Some Beads Where The Buffalo  Roam.  --RoadDog

Since the writing about this trip is taking so long, to see all of the posts, click on the PCB 2018 label below this.

In the Mood For Some Cruising Music, 1969: "Proud Mary"

I recorded this on my cassette recorder and plan to pop it into my '85 Firebird tape deck and do some cruising if I can afford the gas which reached $3.20 around here today.  Dadgum Big Oil GRBs!!

Bob Stroud does a show featuring ten songs from a year or of a particular subject on his show on Chicago's WDRV, 97.1 FM and streaming at  It plays M-F at 10 a.m. and 10 p.m..

On May 17, he went to the year 1969, a particularly good one for me as I graduated from Palatine High School and had my freshman year at Northern Illinois University.

QUESTIONS 67 & 68--  Chicago

COUNTRY HONK--  Rolling Stones
EVERYBODY'S TALKIN'--  Harry Nilsson
HELPLESSLY HOPING--  Crosby, Stills & Nash

PROUD MARY--  Creedence Clearwater Revival
EASY TO BE HARD--  Three Dog Night

Name That Tune (from the above songs):  "Virgil Kane Is My Name And I Served On The Danville Train."  Answer below.  --RoadDog

"The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down"

Along 66, April 2018: The Mill and Olde Keg Meet the Bunion Derby

APRIL  17--  The Olde Keg building in Joliet, Illinois, is set to become a Mexican restaurant with a new name, Catrina's Mexican  The Olde Keg has been long-closed.

The building opened in 1897 and from that year to 1908 was the Horvath Cafe.  From 1908 to 1964, it was Jermaine's Tavern.  The last 29 years it was open it was The Keg.

We've driven by it, but didn't know it wasn't open.

APRIL 17--  This marks the first anniversary of The Mill's reopening in Lincoln, Illinois.  Ceremonies will be held April 29.  Sure glad Lincoln saved this relic of 66.  When we first saw it in 2002, it was looking quite bad.

Lincoln deserves credit, though.  I doubt that any town in the U.S. does more with its Route 66 heritage.

APRIL 19--  Oklahoma is marking the 90th anniversary of the Bunion Derby which took place in 1928 with a running race from Los Angeles to New York City, along Route 66 from L.A. to Chicago.  Two points for anyone who knows who won it?

Run, Run, Don't You Know.  --Andy Payne

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Warm Here We Come--Part 17: How 'Bout Them Indians?


Alas, we're in Florida and it was considerably cool this morning.  Could have stayed home and had this.  But still 30 degrees warmer.  

While getting ready to go out to eat, a lady walked by and saw my White Sox shirt and hat and she said she was a Cleveland Indians fan and madder than all get out about them dropping the Indian logo after this season.  She said she was buying as much stuff as she could with Chief Wahoo on it.

I told her that I would have pulled for the Indians in the 2016 World Series, but not with the Chicago Cubs playing in it.  Anybody else in the National League and I would have been for Cleveland.  After all, I AM an American league fan and besides, the Indians are in our division.

Went over to Burger King for their two breakfast sandwiches for $4 deal.  Real good.  Bought some stuff from Dollar Tree and got a King Cake from Winn-Dixie.  It is not Mardi Gras without King Cake!!

Cool though it was this morning, it warmed up enough by noon that I could enjoy shorts and tee shirt.  Makes me much happier.

A Happy Dog is Better.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

US-421 Yard Sale

Harlan (Ky) Daily Enterprise.

A bit late on this one, but I came across this news about a U.S.-421 Yard Sale that was held May 4-5.  Evidently this is not the first year for it as it lists the first weekend in May for the event.

Several places were listed as having yard sales around Harlan, but there were no listings of places elsewhere in Kentucky.

US-421 runs 941 miles from Michigan City, Indiana, by Lake Michigan to Fort Fisher (by Wilmington, N.C.) by the Atlantic Ocean.

I have driven the whole route.


Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Illinois' 200th, 20 Sporting Events To See-- Part 11: The United Center


Seeing the current Bulls and Blackhawks playing at the "Madhouse on Madison" is thrilling, but sometimes infuriating, depending upon how the two teams are playing.  The 90s were especially fun for Da Bulls (6 NBA Championships) and from 2010 to 2016 Da Hawks won three Stanley Cups.

But, no trip to Chicago's Near West Side is complete without visits to the statuers of Blackhawk greats Bobby Hull and Stan Mikita as well as Bulls great Michael Jordan.

You'll find the Hull and Mikita statues outside the center (hey, hockey is cold, you know).  Michael is inside in an atrium.

Chicago Greats.  --RoadDog

Monday, May 14, 2018

Illinois' 200th, 20 Sporting Events To See-- Part 10: A Ski and A Race

18.  NORGE SKI CLUB, Fox River Grove

See where Olympic athletes Michael Glasder, Kevin Bickner and Casey Larson cut theuir teeth ski jumping here at this northwest suburban club.  It was founded by Norwegians in 1905 and said to be the country's oldest continuously operating ski club.

It offers five hills for training and a monstrous one with views of Chicago.


Claiming to have the best clay track in the Midwest, this venue celebrates 55 years of stock car racing in 2018.  Races run Fridays and Saturdays from mid-April to September.

Friday nights they cap it off with a demolition derby.

Sixty miles west of downtown Chicago.  It was highlighted in the 2012 movie "At Any Price."  It was set in Iowa but filmed in the DeKalb County area.


Illinois' 200th, 20 Sporting Events-- Part 9: Da Bears Training and Crosstown Double Headers

16.   CHICAGO BEARS TRAINING CAMP,  Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais

A sixty mile trip south of Chicago to watch da Bears train for a few weeks before the start of the football season.  Free tickets.  Lots of family activities, and, of course, Bear warching.  But, sadly, no more sulking Jays anymore.

17.  CROSSTOWN DOUBLEHEADERS, Wrigley Field and Comiskey Park (I don't call it by the other name), Chicago.

Usually at least once during the season, there is a Cubs home day game and a White Sox night game, or vice versa.

See the one play then the other.  Liz and I have done this several times.

One time we did this with the Cubs in the afternoon then drove to Milwaukee for the Sox game versus the Brewers.

Hey, with the interleague play in MLB now, the two teams play each other in-town for two series, one at Wrigley and one at Comiskey.  As a matter of fact, they just had one this past weekend.


Friday, May 11, 2018

Along 66, April 2018: Get Those Grants, Watch the Neon and a Mill

APRIL 12--  The Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program announces its 2018 grant season.  It is cost-share and applications are taken through May 10 (too late now, sorry).  Since 2001 there have been 139 cost-share grants totaling $5.5 million.  That Wilder's Steakhouse sign in Joplin, Missouri, is one of the grants.

APRIL 15--  The Wilder's rooftop sign glows again for the first time in 25 years.  The relighting ceremony was April 14.  Lots of clapping and cheering in the video.  Now, if they are open for business, perhaps next time through, you know.

APRIL 17--  The anniversary of The Mill's Reopening to be observed April 29.  That would be The Mill in Lincoln, Illinois, and it is the first anniversary of its reopening.

When we first saw it in 2002, it was in very sad shape and looked ready to fall down.  The good folks in Lincoln sure know how to take care of their Route 66 heritage.


Illinois' 200th, 20 Sport Events-- Part 8: Horses and Running


A fire destroyed this beautiful track in 1980, but it arose again.  Lavishly landscaped grounds, rebuilt track and stately new grandstand..

The track made history as the first thoroughbred course to have a million-dollar purse.  This year that race is August 11 for the 36th running of the Arlington Million.  But there is racing all summer long.

15.  CHICAGO MARATHON,  Grant Park, Chicago

Some 45,000 runners pounding the pavement each October in Chicago.  Lots of spectators clapping and clanging cowbells.   26.2 flat-and-fast miles.  Or, help as a volunteer.

This year the race is on October 7.

Not hardly.  --RoadJogger

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Illinois' 200th, Sporting Events-- Part 7: Ground Squirrels, Old-Time Baseball and V-Ball

12.  ROCK SPRINGS GROUND SQUIRRELS,  Rock Springs Conservation Area, Decatur.

Step back to the mid-1800s to see baseball as it was back then.  The Rock Springs Ground Squirrels are one of several vintage baseball teams that use the old-school ways with underhand pitching, gloveless fielders and uniforms of long-sleeved cotton shirts, bibs and dungarees.

Bunting, stealing bases and swearing are forbidden.

Ground Squirrel games are April 28, June 30, August 25 and September 22.

13.  BEACH VOLLEYBALL,  North Avenue Beach, Chicago.  Another reason to hand out at the beach.  Competition goes from fun to fierce.  The Midwesr's largest adult beach volleyball tournament, Volleywood, takes place July 15.  The AVP Gold Series Championship is August 30 to Sept. 2.


Along 66, April 2018: Murals, Fires and a Neon Relighting

APRIL 8--  Windstorm flattens Route 66 mural in Lexington, Illinois.  Hope they get it back up again before teh red Carpet Corridor Festival in May.

APRIL 8--  Rooftop neon sign on Wilder's Steakhouse in Joplin, Missouri,  relighting set for April 14.  The Missouri Route 66 Association is having a meeting there earlier that day.  I've seen postcards of the interior of the place and have always wanted to eat there.

Of course, give me more NEON!!

APRIL 9--  Wildfire forces the evacuation of Winona, Arizona.  Well, it must be there.  Since it is mentioned in that famous song, we were looking forward to seeing it.  When we drove out to the end of Route 66 in 2006, we saw a sign for Winona and never did see it.

Will the Real Winona Please Stand Up?  --RoadDog

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Illinois' 200th, Sports Experiences-- Part 6: Da Sports Museum and Da Wolves and Da Ice Hogs

10.  CHICAGO SPORTS MUSEUM,  Water Tower Place, Chicago

On the seventh floor of the Mag Mile Mall.  See an extensive collection of 2016 Cubs World Series memorabilia, including Addison Russell's Game 6 grand slam and Grandpa Rossi's Game 7 catching gear.

There are interactive exhibits.  Admission is free if you eat at Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch restaurant next door.

11.  CHICAGO WOLVES,  Allstate Arena, Rosemont.

There is nothing minor league about the award-winning pregame show for the Chicago Wolves in their American Hockey League (AHL) games.

The AHL is the only minor league of the NHL (but sadly the Wolves are not the Chicago Blackhawks minor league team.

Of you want to see the Chicago affiliate, they are in nearby Rockford, Illinois, and they are called the Ice Hogs.


Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Illinois' 200th-- Part 5: A Canoe and an Orange Krush

8.  DES PALINES RIVER CANOE MARATHON--  Paddlers go either 18.5-mile course or a shorter 5.25-mile one.  Started in 1958.  Last year, nearly 800 paddlers from 10 states took part in canoes, kayaks and stand-up paddle boards.

Begins in Libertyville and ends in Mount Prospect.

This year's event May 20.

9.  FIGHTING ILLINI BASKETBALL AND FOOTBALL, State Farm center and memorial Stadium in Champaign

Get that good old Big 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 school spirit.  The State Farm center has an intense student section in basketball called the Orange Krush.

A sea of orange and trademark cheers.


Illinois' 200th, 20 Sporting Events-- Part 4: 16-Inch Softball and Car Racing

Illinois is celebrating its bicentennial of statehood this year.

6.  SIXTEEN-INCH SOFTBALL--  Park District of Forest Park, Forest Park.

Softball began in Chicago in the 19th century at the now defunct Farragut Boat Club.  Much of the world now plays 12-inch softball, local leagues keep the 16-inch tradition alive.  It is played without a glove.

This year is the 50th anniversary of the No Glove Nationals tournament (July 26-29) in Forest Park which is also the home of the 16 Inch Softball Hall of Fame.


Near St. Louis. Originally Gateway International Raceway and started as a quarter-mile long drag strip.  Since expanded to a 1.25 oval track for Indy Car and NASCAR racing.

More than 60,000 fans line it for those races.


Along 66, April 2018: Tropics Sign, Pulaski Brochure and a Prison

APRIL 6--  The relighting of that neat Tropics sign is set for June 24 in Lincoln, Illinois. The original tropics has been torn down and there is a McDonald's there now, but the sign will be in the McDonald's parking lot.

That is a neat sign so really glad it will be back.

APRIL 6--  The newly revised Explore Pulaski County, Missouri brochure has a section on additional and obscure Route 66 alignments, including 66 points of interest and 10 detours.

Of course, I would have to say Missouri Route 66 is my favorite of all eight states.

APRIL 7--  The old, 160 year old Joliet Prison may reopen by August.

That  is a neat old prison.


Monday, May 7, 2018

Illinois' 200th Bicentennial, Sporting Events-- Part 3: Race to Mackinac

4.  RACE TO MACKINAC--  Navy Pier, Chicago, start.  This race started  in 1898 with just five boats, but now attracts 300+.  From Chicago to Michigan's Mackinac Island.  Put on by the Chicago Yacht Club.  This year July 21.  Parade of boats sails past Navy Pier on the way to the start at the Chicago Harbor Lighthouse.

5.  THE CHICAGO FIRE--  Toyota Park, Bridgeview,  If you like soccer, this is for you.  Arguably the most intense of all Chicago fans sit in the north end bleachers., the so-called Section 8 fans.  That name comes from when the team played at Soldier Field.  Today, they are in sections 116-118 at the new park.


Illinois' Bicentennial, Sports-- Part 2: Bears-Packer Game

2.  BEARS-PACKER GAME.  .  Of course.  Once a year at Soldier Field  In 196 games (two a year with one in Green Bay, the score stands Packers 96  Bears 94  They also tied six times.  One great rivalry.  As Wisconsin's Happy Schnaaps Combo says in their great song "The Bears Still Suck,"  "As far as football rivalries, we're both #1!!"

Plus, if you go to Spring Grove, Illinois, there is a bar at Wilmot Road and Illinois Highway 173 called K.C.'s Cabin where a Packer fan was giving the Bears fans a hard time during one particularly bad Bear beating and after being warned to stop, was duct taped to the stop sign.

3.  CHICAGO GOLF CLUB in Wheaton.  Considered by many as the Midwest's Augusta National.  An exclusive , private club since the late 19th century.  Some debate if it is the country's first 18-hole course (or if it is at nearby Downers Grove.  This year, the Senior Women's Open takes place July 12-15).


Friday, May 4, 2018

Illinois Bicentennial: 20 Essential Sports Experiences-- Part 1: Rockford Peaches

From the March 4, 2018, Chicago Tribune "Bicentennial Bucket List:  20 essential sports experiences in Illinois"  by Lori Rackl and Tim Bannon.

This is part of a Bicentennial List of 200 things every Illinoisan and visitor to do to commemorate out state's 200th birthday this year.


Beyer Stadium, Rockford.

Penny Marshall's 1992 film, "A League of Their Own" was about the Rockford Peaches, the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League team formed during World War II by Phil Wrigley of the Cubs and chewing gum fame.

The Peaches played at this stadium from 1943 to 1954 and won several league championships along the way.

The stadium has been renovated and the Rockford Starfires, women's baseball team, formed in 2012.  Admission to home games is free with a non-perishable item.  Midway Village also has a display on the Rockford Peaches.

This is the 75th anniversary of the Rockford Peaches and the city plans special events May 30 and June  1-3.

Also, there are other women's professional teams with two in Chicago, the WNBA's Chicago Fire and the Chicago Red Stars soccer team.


Along 66, April 2018: Of Restaurants and Motels

These are taken from the Route 66 News site, which has an entry for every day and often more than one.  Plus the site has pictures and a lot more information.  I just pick the stories in which I have the most interest.

APRIL 3--  Eat-Rite Diner in St. Louis reopens April 5.  Unfortunately, though, I won't be visiting it or any other Route 66 site in St. Louis for awhile as they desecrated that Confederate statue in Forest Park.  I have a boycott, if you will, going on for that city.

APRIL 4--  The Parkview Inn in Bloomington, Illinois, is being rebuilt beginning next week.  It was destroyed by a fire in 2016.  We've never been to it before.

APRIL 5--  The De Anza Motor Lodge sign in Albuquerque, New Mexico, has been taken down for restoration.  It is one of many steps being taken to rehabilitate the long-closed motel into a boutique motel.

APRIL 5--  The El Vado Motel is getting closer to reopening in Albuquerque.

Always Happy To See Old Motels Reopening.  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Along 66, March-April 2018: Motels and the Black Experience

MARCH 31--  Route 66 Motels may help solve chronic housing shortages in some localities.  Two mentioned are the Sundowner Motel and the Luna Lodge.  Both were once seedy, but have been converted into affordable housing options.  But, they definitely have to have standards for the people who get the chance to live in them.

APRIL 2--  The Negro Motorist Green Book has inspired a photography book  "Reclaiming the Mother Road"  by Ashley E. Osborne which follows the travels of two black women on Route 66.


Along 66, March 2018: Neon Park and Sister Jean

MARCH 28--  Update on the Route 66 Neon Park in St. Roberts, Missouri.  They are hoping to have three refurbished signs up and shining by Spring 2019.

MARCH 30--  On the Road with Sister Jean.  With Loyola University in Chicago going to the Final Four for the first time in 55 years and the whole of the Chicago being all fired up about it, the CBS affiliate  sent a team on the road to San Antonio.  They have a cutout poster of Sister Jean and are photographing her at stops along the way.

One stop was at Lincoln, Illinois, where they shot her by the giant Lincoln in a wagon.  They also showed The Mill and an interview with Geoffrey Ladd.


Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Kewpee Hamburgs-- Part 6: Five Left

The original Flint location became Bill Thomas' Halo Burger.  Wendy's founder, Dave Thomas, as a child eating at Kewpee got the inspiration for his burgers from the Kewpee burgers.  He founded Wendy's in 1969.

Early Slogans:

"Mity Nice Hamburgers"

"Your Grandpappy Are Here."

"We Cater To All Folks"

"Hamburg Pickle On Top!  Makes Your Heart Go Flippity-Flop!""

There are only five Kewpes remaining:

**  Lansing, Michigan

**  Racine Wisconsin

**  Lima, Ohio, has three of them:  Downtown, West and East


Kewpee Hamburgs-- Part 5: Beer Offered After Prohibition

From Wikipedia.

Kewpee Hamburgs was established in Flint, Michigan, in 1923 under the name Kewpee Hotel Hamburgs.  (I still have not come across the reason for calling it "Hotel.")  They took the name after the popular Kewpee dolls.  They were the first fast food places with curbside service and to use drive-thru windows.

The current headquarters of the chain is in Lima, Ohio.

After Prohibition was repealed, some locations added real beer to their popular root beer.

By 1929, there were 200 locations.  At its peak before World War II, there were 400 Kewpee Hamburgs.

Get Your Hamburg  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Kewpee Hamburgs-- Part 4: Kewpee in Lima, Ohio

From the Kewpee Hamburgers site.

This one is about the Kewpee Hamburgs in Lima, Ohio.

The chain used and still uses the kewpee doll as a symbol.

In 1928 Hoyt F. "Stub" Wilson and his wife Julia M. "June" Wilson built the first Kewpee in Lima, Ohio.  A sign touted 10 cent bottles of beer and 5 cent hamburgers.  (Beer at a fast food joint?  Very interesting.)

In 1939 they built another Kewpee structure and it was one of the first buildings in Lima with central air conditioning.  They had a drive-thru window.

In 1972. they built the Allentown Road store.

In 1980 the Bellefontaine location opened and was the largest of the Lima stores, able to seat 180 customers at once.

The web site had interesting pictures of the different stores.


Monday, April 30, 2018

Kewpee Burgers-- Part 3: Some More Information

**  Once there were more than 400 Kewpee hamburger sites by 1940.

**  There is also a Kewpee Doll Museum.

**  There is a Kewpee restaurant in Racine, Wisconsin, at 520 Wisconsin Avenue.  Looks like I'll have to go there now.

**  **  Some of the Kewpees shut down during World War II because of meat rationing.

**  There is one in Lima, Ohio.

**  Wendy's founder Dave Thomas was a big fan of Kewpee Hamburgs and when he started his restaurant he replicated the Kewpee square hamburg.


Friday, April 27, 2018

Kewpee Hamburgers-- Part 2: Five Remaining Kewpees (One in Racine, Wisconsin)


**  The Kewpee hamburger chain started in Flint, Michigan, and evolved into what is now known as Halo Burger.  Under recent new ownership and starting top expand into southeast Michigan.

**  Why was the word "hotels" used in the name?  I'd like to know that as well.

**  The area around Rochester, NY, refers to the sandwich as hamburgs and hot dogs as hots.

**  Racine, Wisconsin, has one of the five remaining Kewpees.

My question.  Might Red's Giant Hamburg, a famous Route 66 restaurant, since torn-down, have been influenced by Kewpee Hamburg?  It too is regarded as one of the first places with a drive-thru window.


Thursday, April 26, 2018

Kewpee Hamburgs Fast Food Chain-- Part 1: "Makes Your Heart Go Flippety-Flop"

From the October 10, 2014, Shorpy  "Kewpie Hamburgs: 1930."

Photo of one of their hamburger stands (only they spell it "Hamburg."  "Circa 1930.  Kewpee Hotels hamburger stand.  This early  fast-food chain ("Hamburg / Pickle on Top / Makes Your Heart / Go Flippety-Flop") got its start in Michigan in the 1920s.  Location and photographer not known."

Looks a lot like a White Castle.  Not sure why they referred to it as "hamburgs."

Kewp Me a Hamburg!!  --RoadBurg

Along 66, March 2018: That Stolen Gas Pump and the Tropics

MARCH 24--  The pump stolen from the Miami, Oklahoma, gas station was recovered.  It is nearly 100 years old and stolen February 25  from the 1929 gas station.

It was found at a store in Ozark, Missouri.

The gas station is located at 331 Main Street on the Route 66 segment leading out to the famous Sidewalk Highway.

MARCH 24--  The co-founder of the Tropics in Lincoln, Illinois, died.  Helen Francis Schwenoha died February 28 at the age of 98 in California.  She and her husband Vincent started the Tropics after World War II.

I am glad we got to stop in there a couple times while it was still open.  We even watched a Chicago Bears game there one time.  So glad the sign was saved, restored and soon will be put back up at the former location, now a McDonald's.

Don't Steal My Pump.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

How I Cured Those April Winter Blues: Barhopping, CCR and Yardwork


We met up with several of our Usual Suspects group at Squaw Bar in Ingleside for the Chain Crawl signup. We are all boaters.

We stayed there for awhile, then went over to Oak Park Lounge on Pistakee Lake to see Bomber the bar dog and have a couple, three, four beers.  Oak Park Lounge looks essentially the way it did in 1900 as we see in pictures around the bar.  It is good to see a place remain the same.

Then, it was on to Sunnyside in Johnsburg for some more.


Bob Stroud spotlighted Creedence Clearwater Revival, my favorite 1960s band, on his Rock and Roll Roots  show on WDRV, 97.1 FM.  he did this because of the group's rhythm section of Stu Cook and Doug Clifford's  (Cosmo) birthdays coming up next week.  Always great to hear their music.

Then I went outside for my first day of yardwork on a real nice day for weather, something we've not had during April.  It has been quite cold and windy.

Later, we went to Sunnyside and had a good time with oldies music and the friendly folks there.


Tuesday, April 24, 2018

How I Cured Those April Winter Blues Last Weekend-- Part 1: Record Store Day, Hot Dogs and Chain Crawl Signup

As I said last week, this April has been one of the coldest, most miserable ever around here.

However, I found ways last weekend to overcome it.


Record Store Day today.  I went to not one, but two mom and pop record stores in McHenry, Illinois.  I bought five albums and 5 CDs at my regular place, The Vinyl Frontier Records.  And, we now have a second place called Siren Records where I bought two more CDs.

Then, I had a great Chicago-style double dog and fries at Tommy's in McHenry.  Hey, a good hot dog always brings a smile to my face.

Went home and then Liz and I went to the Squaw Bar in Ingleside to sign up for the 2018 Chain Crawl.  We do this mostly by boat.  So if you are doing this, can boating season be far off?

What April?  And, I'm Not Finished Yet.  --RoadDog

Shorpy's Got Those Neat Old Car Pictures

From Shorpy, the old picture internet site.

Just type in the capitalized words in your search.

9-28-14:  GRANT SIX: 1920--  touring car

9-25-14:  BLAZING BUICK: 1922

9-24-14--  JACKED UP: 1919:  Studebaker with an interesting way to work its undercarriage.

9-10-14--  SELF SERVICE: 1920--  Washington, D.C. gas station in 1920 showing a man filling his car with gas.  Self-service back then?

9-9-14--  FILTERED GASOLINE: 1920--  Another shot of the above.

For those of you who dig old cars and stuff.

Fill 'Er Up.  --RoadDog

Monday, April 23, 2018

Along 66, March 2018: Shamrock Court Motel in Sullivan For Sale

MARCH 23--  The Shamrock Court Motel in Sullivan, Missouri, is for sale.  The family who owns it is asking $125,000 for it, but that price is negotiable.

The Weiland family has owned it for 60 years.  It is in good shape, but has been unoccupied for decades.  They have owned it since 1953.  In the late 1970s it was converted into efficiency apartments.

It was built in 1945, 1947 or 1948 and has ten rooms, covers 2,400 feet and on a 43,560 foot lot.

It is made of Ozark stone.

David Wickline's  "Images of 66 Vol. 2"  says it is on Route 66 at Shamrock Street entering Sullivan from the west.  "This early motor court has a simply beautiful indigenous Ozark hand-cut stone and brick faced exterior that has certainly stood the test of time.  No sign remains advertising the building that uis located on the south of old 66."

I keep thinking it would be so great to own something on Route 66 like this, but alas, I'm getting too old and it sure would be a lot of work.  I thought seriously about buying the Blue swallow when it wa sup for sale.


Saturday, April 21, 2018

Record Store Day Today

Well, hopefully this horrible winter April we've been having is at an end.  This is the second coldest April ever recorded in the Chicago area.  Hopefully we will get rid of all the snow by the end of the weekend.  No Global Warming here at all.

But, to get your minds off this rotten weather, today, Saturday April 21, across the United States is Record Store Day.  This is a day to go to your local mom and pop independent record store and flip through those vinyl albums (one of my favorite all-time fun things to do).

If you don't know where your local store is, you can go to the site and find the closest.

I'll be going over to The Vinyl Frontier Records in McHenry in a little while.

No Downloading Here Today.  --RoadDog

Shagging On the Strand Spring Safari 2018

I am listening to the Surf, 94.9 FM out of North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, right now and heard them announce that April 20 to April 29 is the annual Spring Safari S.O.S..  This means there will be lots of Beach Music being played in town over this period.

The Shag (not the English word) is South Carolina's State Dance, a slow form of the bop.  And, of course that Beach Music is some of the greatest music anywhere around (in my humble opinion).

One of these days I sure hope to get there for it.  Not to dance the Shag, but to klisten to that great music and sip plenty of ice cold beer.


Kids Skitching On Their Sleds in 1943

From the January 10, 2018, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1943, 75 Years Ago.

"The alertness of an auto driver during the forenoon averted a serious accident when boys on sleds were coasting on Center Street in Sycamore.  The driver of the machine was able to swerve his machine and thus narrowly missed the youngsters.

"The matter was reported to the police and Chief George Meier states that unless the coasters stay out of the street during this icy weather, it will be necessary to confiscate some sleds.  The kids are again hitching their sleds to autos unbeknownst to the driver, and this also is a dangerous practice.

Those Crazy Kids.  --RoadDog

McHenry's Windhill Pancake Parlor-- Part 3: The Garbage Omelet

For those who don't care to attempt the Challenge, there is the Garbage Omelet.for $12.

A Garbage Omelet includes bacon, ham, sausage, peppers, onions, tomatoes, mushrooms and three cheeses.

It is made with three AA fresh eggs and a choice of two:  hash, 2 small pancakes, petite waffle, fruit, orange slices.

I Might Be Able to Handle That.  --RoadDog

Thursday, April 19, 2018

McHenry's Windhill Pancake Parlor-- Part 2: "The Iron Man Challenge"

In 1986, it was bought by Sharon and Dave Hunt who operated it with their children for seventeen years before selling it to one of their children who runs the place today.

They have a train counter at a bar in the back that can seat fourteen people.  Your food and drink order is delivered by a model train.

They have "The Iron Man Challenge."

It is a 12-egg omelet with mushrooms, onions, cheese that is covered with chili and more cheese and an unhealthy portion of American fries (sliced potatoes) and two biscuits.

If you can finish it in one hour, your cost is $1.99 (to cover tax).  You get a tee-shirt announcing your "accomplishment" and your name goes on a plaque.  You pay $25 if you fail.  So far there have been twenty winners in 188 attempts.

I'd Like To See It, But Know I Could Never Finish It.  --RoadDog

McHenry's Windhill Pancake Parlor-- Part 1: Was a Hitching Post, Then a Filling Station

McHenry, Illinois.

Located by the Fox River Bridge on Illinois Highway 120.  Features lots of antiques and items from local attractions and movies year-round and in a Victorian setting.  They really decorate for holidays and you should go there for Halloween and Christmas.  For Halloween it takes 27 people 124 man-hours to put all the stuff up.

Menus are in old hardbound magazines.

In 1890, the site was a hitching post for the hotel across the street (where the Foxhole Bar and Grill is located today).  In 1893, a two-story building was erected on the site.  In 1934, Warren Holly opened Holly's Filling Station and Ice House which operated on the site until 1974.

In 1976, it opened as a pancake house.


Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Along 66, March 2018: Belgium Radio/TV Tour This Summer

MARCH 18:  A Belgium TV and radio crew is traveling Route 66 this summer.  VRT Radio.  It will have a production music format.

They will start July 30 and finish August 20 in Santa Monica.

Sorry to see they will be staying in just one classic Route 66 motel, the El Rancho in Gallup, New Mexico.


Along 66, March 2018: The Threatt Gas Station and Midpoint Cafe

From the Route 66 News site.

MARCH 14--  Land dispute may hold up restoration of Threatt Filling Station near Luther, Oklahoma.  The people restoring it want it to be a visitors center and museum.

It was built in 1916 and was one of the few black-owned businesses along Route 66.  It operated until the early 1960s.  Then it became a home.

One of the few places black motorists could use.  Just for this fact alone it should be reopened and turned into a  museum about the black experience on Route 66.

MARCH  15--  Midpoint Cafe in Adrian, Texas, reopens with new owners on March 28.  neat place, but how do they know they are at the midpoint of Route 66?


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

22 Words That Have Different Meanings in Chicago-- Part 5: The "L"

First, what it means everywhere else.

18.  THE COACH--  The head person on a team who calls the plays.  In Chicago, it means Mike Ditka, also sometimes called Da Coach.

19.  PARKING METER--  Where you pay for parking.  In Chicago, it is what the mayor sells to buy some stuff.  You can take out a second mortgage to pay for it now.

20.  THE "L"--  The 12th letter of the alphabet.  In Chicago, what you take to get around downtown.

21.  ST. PATRICK'S DAY--  March 17.  In Chicago, it is a day of drunken debauchery where the river gets dyed green.  People have green tongues for several days afterwards.

22.  THE SECOND CITY--  Chicago.  In Chicago, it means New York.


Monday, April 16, 2018

22 Words That a Different Meaning in Chicago-- Part 4: The Taste

First, what it means everywhere else.

13.  FIELDS--  Open area of grass.  In Chicago, it was the old Marshall Fields store, now Macy's.

14.  THE TASTE--  Experiencing something's flavor.  In Chicago, it is experiencing new tastes, and smells at the Taste of Chicago in Grant Park.

15.  BOOT--  Type of shoe.  In Chicago, Your car can get one if you owe too many parking tickets.  Can't go nowhere with a boot on your tire.

16.  SUMMER--  Hot weather.  In Chicago, three to four months of extreme humidity.

17.  HILLSIDE STRANGLER--  Two 70s-era Los Angeles killers.  In Chicago, it is a poorly designed expressway merge in the western suburbs.


22 Words That Have a Different Meaning in Chicago-- Part 3: The Beach

First, what it means everywhere else.

8.  DIBS--  Claiming something that's yours.  In Chicago it is a parking space saved by you because you dug it out of the snow.  You mark it with old chairs or some other piece of furniture.  Fights can occur if people disregard your "dibs."

9.  DRAKE--  Guy who hates Chris Brown.  (Not sure what this about>)  In Chicago it is a fancy, expensive hotel.

10.  THE BEACH--  A tropical sandy beach with blue waves coming ashore.    In Chicago it is a sandy beach by a REALLY COLD Lake Michigan.  OK for sunning, not too much fun for swimmin'.  No kidding, that water is C-O-L-D!!!!

11.  THE CELL--  Place for prisoners.  In Chicago, it was the name of the stadium where the White Sox play.  Now named something else, but still called Comiskey Park by most fans.  I still call it that.  And, it is still the Sears Tower and will still be the John Hancock whenever its name gets changed.

12.  THE BEAN--  Food that makes you fart.  Chicago--  Art in Grant Park.


Friday, April 13, 2018

22 Words That Have a Different Meaning in Chicago-- Part 2: Hot Dogs

4.  OCTOBER--    To most it means Fall, but around here it is the month that has two weeks which are not too hot or too cold and where fans drink away the sadness of another failed Cubs and Sox season.

5. PIZZA--  You know.  But in Chicago it means deep-dish.

6.  HOT DOG--  Wiener, bun, ketchup to most, but in Chicago it means wiener, bun (poppy seed), onions, relish, tomatoes, pickle, peppers, celery salt and mustard.  ABSOLUTELY NO KETCHUP OR CATSUP!!!  We can't emphasize that enough.

7.  SOLDIER--  Military, but in Chicago it is where the Chicago Bears play, as in Soldier Field.  Da Bears sometimes play good, but mostly bad.


Thursday, April 12, 2018

22 Words That Have a Different Meaning in Chicago-- Part 1: LSD

From the March 26, 2018 Buzz Feed by Kristin Chirico.

First the meaning else where.  Then the meaning in Chicago.

1.  LSD--  A mind blowing drug, but in Chicago it stands for Lake Shore Drive along the Lake Michigan waterfront.  From that song by Alliotta, Haynes & Jeremiah.

2.  SNOW DAY--  Elsewhere, it means that school is canceled and cars crash.  In Chicago it means that cars might not even start because of the cold, or, because of the snow, you might not be able to find them if parked outside or, if in a  garage, you can't get it out through the snow drift.

3.  APRIL--   Elsewhere it means spring.  But in Chicago it means it is still winter and all those flowers who stupidly push up are killed.


Along Lincoln Highway, March 2018: The Serro Diner-- Part 2

In 1990, the diner was acquired by the Senator John Heinz History Center who donated it to the Lincoln Highway Heritage Corridor in 2003.  The restoration of the diner was completed in 2013.

Eventually the diner will become part of five Lincoln Highway artifacts including a tourist cabin, filling station, Packard vehicle and a historic neon sign at an exhibit in the new wing of the Lincoln Highway Experience.

It is planned that this will be open to the public by late May.


Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Along Lincoln Highway, March 2018: Serro Diner in Pennsylvania

From the March 26, 2018, TribLive  "Historic diner moving from Latrobe postponed" Shirley McMartin.

The 1938 Serro's Diner has been restored with plans of moving it to the Lincoln Highway Experience, Route 30 East near Kingston Dam in Unity.

The 11.5 foot by 45-foot diner was opened in 1038 by the brothers Lou and J.C. Serro of Hermineie and operated at the Pennsylvania Turnpike Irwin exit until 1958 when it was moved to Youngwood and renamed the Willow Diner.


Along 66, March 2018: A Bridge, Motel Sign and a Trail

MARCH 5--  The Desert Sands Motel sign in Albuquerque has been taken down.

MARCH 7--  The Trail of Tears Memorial in Missouri is slated to reopen April 22.  This is also Eart Day.  Time set is 1 p.m.

The intricate structures were created by Larry Baggett.  He died in 2013 and it had deteriorated alarmingly since then.  Marie Rydberg bought it in 2016 and with a lot of help, has restored it.

We went by it back in October and it already was looking much better.  Thanks Marie.

MARCH 13--  MoDot is looking for new owners for the Gasconade River bridge near Hazelgreen, Missouri.

Anyone Wanna Buy a Bridge?  --RoadDog

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Along 66, March 2018: Motels and a Pump

These stories are taken from the Route 66 News site.  I just write about the ones of most interest to me.  The site has stories for just about every day and a lot more detail.

FEBRUARY 28--  The signs at the Paradise Motel in Tucumcari have been removed.  The motel has been long abandoned and has had two fires in the last six months.  The signs will be restored, but sadly, placed in a private collection.

Well, at least they will still be around.

MARCH 1--  The El Vado Motel restoration is nearly done in Albuquerque.  It will be a 22-room boutique motel which will also have food pods and retail stores.

MARCH 4--  An old  pump was stolen from the historic gas station in Miami, Oklahoma.  This place is located near the beginning of the Ribbon 66.

Bring Back My Pump!!  --RoadDog

Knights of Columbus to Build on the Lincoln Highway in DeKalb

From the March 21, 2018,  MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"Regardless of the fact that many people have thought that the Knights of Columbus in DeKalb were not intending to build their new home on Lincoln Highway when today it was learned that bids are now received for the new home of the knights.

"According to present plans, which have been accepted by the building committee of the local council that the building will be of brick construction, three stories and a basement and fitted out n every respect with every convenience."

There is a Knights of Columbus building at 1336 East Lincoln Highway built about 1920 in DeKalb which probably is this building.  I did find another Knights of Columbus building listed at 134 1/2 Lincoln Highway.


DeKalb's Lincoln Inn Expands Food Service in 1918

From the March 21, 2018, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"In addition to ice cream service, the Lincoln Inn has now added light lunches and is now in shape to serve sandwiches, coffee, pie, etc., and the coffee is real honest to goodness coffee.

"The new feature was added during the last few days, a room at the rear of the dining room having been fitted up as a kitchen and it is almost certain that the new wrinkle will prove popular with patrons of the Inn."

We went to the Lincoln Inn in downtown DeKalb last month and asked if the one mentioned 100 years ago and this one were the same, but the people there didn't know.  They are/were both on the Lincoln Highway, of course.


Monday, April 9, 2018

Car-Chasing Dog Gets His in 1918

From the March 21, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"A large collie dog belonging to someone in the City of DeKalb turned up missing today all of the account of the fact that the animal had the most annoying habit of chasing cars and automobiles.

"The street cars, of course, are unable to turn out for the dog, and yesterday the animal in its chase after the car, remained on the track about a second too long, and today he is in dog heaven."

Sorry 'Bout That Doggie.  --RoadDog

Friday, April 6, 2018

Lincoln Highway Is Again Route 30 in Illinois in 1943 (Well, Alternate U.S. 30)

From the April 4, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1943, 75 Years Ago.

"The Lincoln Highway is again Route 30, signs designating the famous route as Alternate U.S. 30 being erected during the past few days.  For years the Lincoln Highway through Illinois carried the official designation of U.S. 30.

"A few days ago, during a revamping of the highway system in the state, the number 30 was given to the former Route 71 and the Lincoln Highway was given the designation of U.S. Route 330.

"A few months ago, Governor Dwight H. Green announced that he had issued an order designating the Lincoln Highway in Illinois as Alternate U.S. 30 and signs to that effect are now being erected."

Today, the stretch of the old Lincoln Highway through DeKalb County is Illinois Highway 38.


That DeKalb Garage on the Lincoln Highway Still Not Open in 1918

From the March 28, 2018, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"Work on the Ellwood-Fisk garage at the corner of First Street and Lincoln Highway was resumed and it is hoped by the contractors and the owners that no interruptions will follow.

"The work has been delayed to some extent on account of lack of material, and then cold weather stopped progress, and today the sound of the hammer and saw was again heard coming from that direction."

World War I was going on and much was diverted to war production which may have caused some of the material shortages.  I have been writing about this gas station for a long time and it was originally hoped that it would be finished by the end of 1917.


Thursday, April 5, 2018

Illinois' 200th Anniversary-- Part 4: Black Hawk and Lewis & Clark

This year marks the State of Illinois' 200th anniversary of being in the United States.  It joined in December, 1818.

These are historical places every Illinoisan should visit at least once.

16.  CHESS RECORDS--  Chicago--  2120 S. Michigan Avenue.  Where Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, the Rolling Stones and many others made music history.

17.  PILSEN MURALS--  Chicago--  These murals have been up fifty years.  Also, the neighborhood is still primarily Hispanic.

18.  BLACK HAWK STATE HISTORIC SITE--  Rock Island--  The sauk and Fox Indians.  Black Hawk led a failed attempt to reoccupy lands his people had lost to whites.  This led to the brief Black Hawk War of 1832.

19.  LEWIS AND CLARK--  Downstate near St. Louis--  Hartford, Illinois--  Reconstruction of Camp Dubois where Corps of Discovery spent the winter 1803-1804, preparing for their epic trip.

20.  ILLINOIS CENTENNIAL MONUMENT-- Chicago-- Put up on 100th anniversary of statehood in 1918 in Logan Park.  Depicts Native Americans, explorers, farmers and laborers.


Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Illinois' 200th Anniversary, 20 Places to Visit-- Part 3: Galena

11.  WATER TOWER--  Chicago.  A survivor of the 1871 Great Chicago Fire.  On Michigan Avenue.

12.  GALENA--  "The town that history forgot."  Looks the same as when U.S. Grant lived there in the 1850s.

13.  LINCOLN'S NEW SALEM--  Near Springfield.  Civilian Conservation Corps reconstruction of where Lincoln lived and worked when he came to Illinois in the 1830s.

14.  HAROLD WASHINGTON LIBRARY--  Chicago.  Seventy miles of bookshelves with lots of history, including its namesake, Chicago's first black mayor.

15.  OLD STATE CAPITOL--  Springfield--Meticulous reconstruction where Lincoln delivered his "House Divided" speech and where his body lay in state after his assassination.  Barack Obama used it for backdrop to announcement for his presidential bid.


Illinois' 200th Anniversary, 20 Sites to Visit-- Part 2: Route 66 and I&MCanal

6.  ROUTE 66--  Well, all of us 66ers knew about the Illinois stretch, Chicago to East St. Louis.

7.  FORT DE CHARTRES--  Near Prairie du Rocher.  One of a series of French-built forts before handing country east of the Mississippi over to English.  The powder magazine is believed to be the oldest standing building in the state.

8.  I&M CANAL--  LaSalle, a crucial link between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River.  Hand-dug in teh 1800s.

9.  NAUVOO--  Mississippi River occupied by Joseph Smith and the Mormons before being driven out.

10.  LOVEJOY HOMESTEAD--  Part of the Underground Railway in Princeton.


Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Illinois 200th Anniversary, 20 Historic Sites: Kaskaskia and Pullman

From the December 3, 2017, Chicago Tribune  "Because it's the bicentennial:  200 things every Illinoisan should do -- or see, eat or drink -- at least once."  by Lori Racki.

History: 20 Things to do in Illinois

1.  KASKASKIA--  the first, short-lived state capital by the Mississippi River.

2.  CAHOKIA MOUNDS--  In Collinsville, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, largest pre-Columbian metropolis north of Mexico.

3.  NAPER SETTLEMENT--  In Naperville  What life in Illinois was like pre-plumbing.

4.  PULLMAN--  Chicago's Far South Side.  Pullman Historic District.  One of the country's most famous and controversial company towns  The bloody strike here led to the federal government declaring Labor Day a holiday.

5.  HULL HOUSE--  Where countless immigrants received a helping hand in Chicago.

Lots of History In This State.  --RoadDog

Monday, April 2, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 16: Donovan's Reef and Natty Light

Friday, February 2

Drove from Pompano Joe's to the Driftwood Lodge parking lot across the street and next to Donovan's Reef, our favorite bar in Panama City Beach.  We will go there every night while we are in town.  Being right across the street (Front Beach Road) we can walk to and from it.  No messing with the police here.  Just watch out for cars when crossing.

Lisa, one of the bartenders from last year, recognized us and welcomed us back.  That is one great memory, I'll tell you.  She bought us a welcome back drink and we settled in at the bar.

She even remembered our drink of choice in the place, Natty Light draft pints.  Natty Light is short for Natural Light, a Busch product that is quite popular and cheap in Florida.  The case of beer we bought earlier was Natty Light.


Warm Here We Come-- Part 15: No Shuckums, But Pompano Joe's


No Shuckums, so over to Pier Park we go and a stop at another favorite place, Pompano's Joe's.  It used to be Reggae J's.  They have a real nice happy hour 2-5 with $2 draft pints and several really good food specials.  Plus, it is right across the street from the Gulf of Mexico and has great views.

There is always a good crowd at the bar and several heard us talk about not finding Patches earlier today.  They said they go there all the time, but it is hard to find.  They gave us instructions as to how to get to the place.  Sounds like we drove by it at least twice.  We'll make another attempt to find it tomorrow coming back from the Mardi Gras parade at St. Andrew's.

We got a huge tuna dip plate for $6 which filled both of us up.


Friday, March 30, 2018

More Railroad Tracks in DeKalb County in 1918

From the January 10, 2018, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"The new siding, under construction at Kirkland by the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul railroad, is expected by the company to facilitate the handling of passengers and freight over the road between Chicago and Rockford and to increase the effectiveness of the shuttle train service over the Chicago, Milwaukee and Gary from Chicago to Camp Grant."

Camp Grant was a huge training facility for the United States during World War I and located west of Rockford where the airport is today.


Thursday, March 29, 2018

Vietnam Medal of Honor Keynote Speaker Allen James Lynch at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery

The outdoor public event, which starts at 9 a.m., will happen at the cemetery's main flagpole and will include keynote speaker and Medal of Honor recipient Allen Lynch, a gun salute by the Memorial Squad and taps.

From Wikipedia.

Born October 28, 1945  Received Medal of Honor for his actions during the Vietnam War.  Joined Army in 1964 and by December 15, 1967 was with the 1st Battalion (Airmobile), 12th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile).

During a firefight that day near My An, Binh Dinh Province rescued three wounded soldiers and stayed behind to protect them when the rest of his company withdrew and single-handedly defended them until friendly forces arrived.

Afterwards, he was promoted to sergeant and received the Medal of Honor from President Richard Nixon in 1970.

Well deserved.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 15: Sharkey's But No Shuckums


OK, we are finally at PCB (Panama City Beach) after the one day delay because of car trouble and as of yet haven't had a drink anywhere.  We must remedy that.

Spotting the top of the huge tiki bar at Sharkey's, this be the place to accomplish that drink.  This is one of our must-go-to joints on the beach.  We understand the place gets packed during spring break, but we are in the off-season, so there are a few vacationers and a lot of regulars out at the tiki bar, which is right by the beach.

It has plastic sheets around the sides to keep it warmer and break the wind.  Happy Hour is $1.50 12 oz Miller Lites so had a couple of them.  A bit chilly as well so were thankful for the portable heaters.

Leaving there, we were thinking of going to Shuckums, but it was too crowded.



Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 14: Natty Light, Forgetting Stuff and No Patches


Went to Wal-Mart for a case of Natty Light.  It's cheaper and we have grown quite fond of it over all these years of going to PCB.  It is very  popular.  It is actually called Busch Natural Light, but many call it Natty Light.  I also got a pair of flip-flops since I forgot to bring any of the many pairs at home along with me.  I always forget something.  I also forgot my deodorant so had to get some at Dollar Tree.  Otherwise I couldn't stand myself.

Traffic was horrible wherever we went today.

Took Back Beach Road to Thomas Drive and then as far south as we could go as we were looking for a place that Sue and Paul had told us about called Patches.  They had told us it was hard to find and that sure was on the mark.  We drove up and down the stretch where it should be several times, but never did see the place.  If it was there, it was well-hidden.

We finally gave up and drove back closer to our motel.

Looking For a Patch.  --RoadDog

Along 66, February 2018: Texas License Plates, Cozy, Motorheads

FEBRUARY 25--  Texas approves Route 66 license plates.  Show people your favorite road.

FEBRUARY 26--  Cozy Dog Drive-In in Springfield, Illinois, will be offering its own soda.  Anything to do with Route 66?  I think so.  Now wash those Cozies down with Cozy Cola.

FEBRUARY 27--  The new Route 66 Motorheads Bar and Grill will open in March in Springfield, Illinois.  It is in the former Stuckey's restaurant on Toronto Road West.  It has the former front entrance to Bill Shea's Gas Station Museum and other items of interest to Route 66ers.

Reckon We'll have to Check Out Motorheads.  --RoadDog

Monday, March 26, 2018

Along 66, February 2018: New Owners, a Fire and Neon

FEBRUARY 21--  The Mule Trading Post in Missouri has changed hands and is undergoing renovation.  Always a favorite stop for us  on Route 66.  Just keep it sort of junky, though.

FEBRUARY 21--  Fire destroys the Sirloin Stockade in Rolla, Missouri.  A total loss.  And, I always wanted to eat there.  Oh well.

FEBRUARY 22--  Owl Court in Oklahoma City changes owners.  Built in 1931.  Looks like a neat old motel from the picture.

FEBRUARY 23--  Tulsa takes first step toward a neon sign Route 66 district

Always Love Those Neon Signs.  --RoadDog

Got Our Irish On-- Part 8: Foxhole, PLAV and Sunnyside

Went back to the Foxhole and had another drink and then over to the PLAV, Polish Legion of American veterans for one of their great $2.50 Sunday special Bloody Marys.  Watched some of the NCAA Tournament there.

We then went over to Sunnsyside in Johnsburg and there was a good-sized crowd there.

This NCAA Tournament has been one of the even better ones.  Lots and lots of close games and upsets.


Friday, March 23, 2018

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 7: A Band and A Beer Tent


Liz didn't want to go, so I went by myself over to the beer tent at Miller Point Park located about a block from the Foxhole.  It used to be a popular restaurant called Joey T's, but unfortunately it burned down.  It is located on the Fox River.

McHenry had this St. Patrick's Day festival over two days, yesterday and today.  Yesterday, they had bands all day and into the night at the park.  We saw pictures and the place was jam packed.  Today, it wasn't.  There were perhaps 30-35 people in the huge tent (which was also heated).  No problem getting a seat or a drink.

The band Goin' South was playing while I was there.  Obviously, they play newer country music and do it quite well.  I imagine, though, that they were disappointed about not playing in front of the masses as was at the tent yesterday.  This was the band setting up to play at Sunnyside when we were there yesterday.

Of all the bands they had playing today and yesterday, though, I don't think any of them did Irish music.  This wold have been a great place for Terry and Greg Spizzirri to play.  We sure miss Terry who died last year and was noted for his Irish music.  His father was Italian, but mother Irish.  he referred to himself as The Garlic Celtic.

It was so much nicer with fewer people today.  On the way out I found Girl Scouts selling cookies and bought two boxes.

Much Nicer Today.  --RoadDog

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 6: Back to McHenry


The McHenry Shamrock Fest, or whatever they called it, was the first time they had anything major going on beyond the parade.  And, they were having it both Saturday and Sunday.

Liz and I had a coupon from the Chain Crawl for a half-price pizza at the Foxhole, so called because it is downstairs at an old building by the Fox River.  We were a both concerned that we would run into those huge crowds of yesterday, but figured maybe some of them had had enough and would be staying home, probably nursing hangovers.

We were actually able to park on Riverside Drive by the Foxhole, which only had three customers inside when we got there.  The bartenders said they had run out of beer yesterday, but the local distributor had been making deliveries all day and night.  Most places had run out of beer or come close to it.  Revelers had been three deep at the bar most of the day on Saturday.  Every table was occupied and as soon as someone would get up, it was reoccupied.

The Foxhole, like I said, is in the basement of an old hotel (now apartments) built in the 1890s.  They are noted for their pizza, plus we love their $12 a full slab of ribs they have on Wednesdays.  That comes with soup or salad, baked potato, garlic bread and cole slaw.

While we were there, another 10-12 people came in.  The owner said yesterday had been the busiest they'd ever had.

Reckon This St. Partrick's Party in McHenry Was a Huge Success.  --RoadPat

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 5: On to JohnsO'Burg


We went to Half-Times in Johnsburg, Illinois.  There was also a lot of people in there, but the place is quite big so we were able to get a table.  They had corned beef & cabbage dinners for $10 and $1 pints of green Miller Lite.  We could definitely live with those prices so feasted and drank.

Many people in green attire and everyone in the spirit O' St. Patrick.

Then decided to check out Sunnyside Tap in Johnsburg, which is our main hangout in the area.  The place was also very crowded, but we were able to get a table (the last one) and had some more beer ($5 pitchers) during happy hour so we were happy.  They had a band setting up, but we left before they started.

So, today, we went to five bars and drank a whole lot of beer.

And, of course, at the last two places they had the NCAA Tournament games on.

Home After That.  That Was Enough.  --RoadParty

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 4: PLAV and the Corkscrew


On our way over to the PLAV, we drove on Green Street which was full of people wearing various articles of green attire and carrying green plastic cups.  They were especially numerous around the new bar, D.C. Cobbs by the newly reopened McHenry Theater.

We heard several people in the PLAV talking about how crowded every bar was on Riverside.

But, we intended to take a walk over to Corkscrew Pointe where friend Mark was cooking food.  The inside of that place was so packed you couldn't get a drink nor hardly move.  We had seen signs that there was another party going on outside behind the place so decided to see that.  No one was cooking at the grills back there and a deejay was playing Irish music out by the Fox River.

It was less crowded, though, so we got beers and commandeered a table.  We soon found out why there weren't a lot of people out there.  There was a mean wind blowing some really cold air on you.  After a half a cup, we had had enough and moved back to the side of the building which served as a windbreak so it was comfortable.

W met Mark who said they had run out of food about the time the parade had started.

But, we had had enough of the too many people hassle and decided to go over to Johnsburg.


Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 3: Over to the PLAV


OK, so we didn't get to see the Fox River dyed green or the parade, but we were going to do as much St. patrick's Day stuff as possible, regardless.

After several green beers at Corner Tap in McHenry, Illinois, we drove over to the PLAV, Polish Legion of American Veterans, a short distance away.  McHenry is kind of a different town in that it has three "downtowns."  The very first one was by the Fox River on Riverside Drive.  The second one was around today's Green Street and the third came about because of the railroad and is called Main Street.

The Corner Tap is in the third downtown on Main Street.  The PLAV is one street off Riverside.  Corner Tap was getting really crowded, but it was standing room only at the PLAV with lots of people wearing various outfits of green.  We eventually got seats at the bar and had several more cocktails.


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 2: The Mineola, Al Capone and a Green River


How about having the actual St. Patrick's Day on a Saturday.  Big grounds for some major partying.

I went to the Fox Lake/Grant Township Historical Society meeting and we had a presentation about Fox Lake's historical Mineola Hotel, built in the 1890s.  As is the case of most pl;aces out in the Chain of Lakes area, there is always the rumor that Al Capone was there, but no proof has been found to substantiate it.

The Mineola was one of many resorts and hotels around the Chain of Lakes back then when it was a major tourist attraction.

McHenry, Illinois, dyed the Fox River green (like Chicago) at 10, but I was at the meeting so didn't see it.  By the time we got to McHenry later in the day, sadly, the dye was gone.

Liz and I drove to McHenry with plans to see the St. Patrick's parade, but we could not find any parking spaces anywhere near it, so went to Binny's and bought some beer and then over to the Corner Tap on Main Street where we had green beer and met up with Kevin and Kelly, two actual Irish folks.

Not Al, So Don't Call me Al.  --RoadCapone

Monday, March 19, 2018

Got Our Irish On Last Weekend-- Part 1: Donovan's & the Legion

I  kind of figured that St. Patrick's Day, March 17th, happening on a Saturday would make it an even bigger event, and it sure was around here in northeast Illinois.


Kickoff with Irish soda bread at Donovan's Reef in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin.  Stopped at Tommy's in Spring Grove on the way home.  And, of course, watched a whole lot of college basketball as some sort of tournament was going on.


We went to the Legion in Fox Lake for their St. Patrick's Day party.  Enjoyed the corned beef & cabbage dinners and, speaking of the Luck O' the Irish, Liz, who is half Irish on her mother's side, won the 50-50.  All sorts of green swag given out   And, we had a guy playing solo music (but, alas, no Irish music).

Watched the NCAA Tournament there and then at home in Margaritaville when we got home.

Two More Days To Go.  --RoadDog

Gas Station Completion Nearing on the Lincoln Highway in DeKalb in 1918

From the January 10, 2018, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"The new garage at the corner of First and Lincoln Highway is fast nearing completion, that is, as far as the contractors are concerned.

"The men have been working nearly all week and the brick walls have been climbing at an appreciative rate all during the week.  When once the walls are completed the inside work can be rushed to completion regardless of the weather conditions."

Taking Forever to Finish That Gas Station in DeKalb, Illinois.  --RoadDog

Friday, March 16, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 13: We Finally Get to PCB and the Driftwood Lodge


We finally arrived in Panama City Beach's west end on Fla. Highway 79.  As bad a s 79 is from Bonifay to Ebro, it is a fast and smooth ride when you get past Ebro.  Four lanes and 65 mph.  Hopefully it won't take much longer to get it like that from Ebro to Bonifay.

Drove east a mile on Front Beach Road and checked into the Osprey for our room at the Driftwood Lodge.  They are both owned by the same family.

We have been staying at the Driftwood Lodge for a lot of years.  It was built in the 1950s and is what would be classified as an old mom and pop motel.  There are two stories of rooms up by the street and down a short hill the rooms where we stay which are called cabana rooms.  The cabana rooms are about 200 feet from the Gulf of Mexico.  And for between $55 and $60 a night in February that is a great deal.

We Like the Price and We Like the Location and Room.  --RoadDog

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Along 66, February 2018: Kingman's Arch, Launching Pad, Cyrus Avery III

FEBRUARY 15--  Kingman oks arch near Locomotive Park.  The $177,736 cost will be paid for by motel taxes.  Like with neon signs, you can never have too many arches.

FEBRUARY 15--  The grandson of Cyrus "Father of Route 66" Avery dies at age 85.  Cyrus Avery III.

FEBRUARY 16--  Launching Pad Drive-In in Wilmington, Illinois, may partially reopen for the May Red Carpet Corridor celebration.  The 30-foot tall Gemini Giant is still there, thankfully, despite the place's closure for six years.

Full opening is scheduled for 2019.


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

I'd Like To Add Some Food You Should Try in Illinois

That was an impressive list for sure.  But, they overlooked some so I feel obliged to include them here.

1.  CHICAGO DOG--  No ketchup, though.  All over the area.

2.  CHICAGO PIZZA--  All over (and you cut the pizza into squares)


4.  COZY DOG--  Springfield

5.  BEER NUGGETS--  Fried dough.  Started in DeKalb, but now in many places in the northeastern part of the state.

6.  ITALIAN BEEF--  Thin slices with au jus,

7.  ONION LOAF--  Hackney's  Chicago suburbs


Oh Boy.  --RoadHog

Along 66, February 2018: Wilder's and Dem Burros

FEBRUARY 10--  Wilder's Steakhouse rooftop sign removed for restoration in Joplin.  A relighting ceremony is set for April 14.  It is an animated sign and has not worked in at least 25 years.  Opened in 1936.

I saw postcards of the interior of the restaurant.  Sure wish that was still open.

FEBRUARY 13--  Contraceptive program suggested to control the population of the Oatman burros.  Something needed badly.  They're cute, but too many of them.


Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Illinois' 200th Anniversary: 20 Things Every Illinoisan' Should Eat-- Part 4

16.  LARS BAR--  Anderson's Candy Shop, Richmond.  Hey, that's near me!!

17.  BISTER JIBAROTO--  Jibarito's Authentic Puerto Rican Restaurant, Chicago

18.  PACZKI--  Herb's Bakery, Elgin

19.  SMOKED SALMON--  Calumet Fisheries, Chicago

20.  MOONBURGER--  Moonshine Store, Moonshine (near Martinsville)

Sounding Good To Me.  --RoadMoon

Illinois' 200th Anniversary: 20 Things Every Illinoisan Should Eat-- Part 3

11.  CHICKEN DINNER--  White Fence Farm, Romeoville.  A Route 66 Classic

12.  QUAD-CITIES-STYLE PIZZA--  Harvis Pizza,  Rock Island

13.  RAINBOW CONE--  Original Rainbow Cone,  Chicago

14.  CINNAMON ROLLS--  Great Pumpkin Patch, Arthur

15.  BABY BACK RIBS--  17th Street Barbecue, Murphysboro

Eatin' Good In the Neighborhood.--  RoadFood

Monday, March 12, 2018

Illinois' 200th Anniversary: 20 Foods Every Illinoisan Should Eat:

4.  STRAWBERRY BREAD--  What's Cookin' in Charleston

5.  CHICAGO DOGS--  Superdawg inChicago

6.  SALTED CARAMEL GELATO--  Prairie Roots Farm & Creamery in Champaign

7.  RIB TIPS--  Lem's Bar-B-Q  in Chicago

8.  WHITE ASPARAGUS--  Eckert's Belleville Farm in Bellecille

9.  GARRETT MIX POPCORN--  Garrett's Popcorn Shops in Chicago

10.  CHEESE CURDS--  Marcoot Jersey Creamery in Greenville

I'll Bite.  --RoadDog

200th Anniversary of Illinois: 20 Things Every Illinoisan Should Eat-- Part 1

Illinois became the 21st state in 1818 so we are celebrating the bicentennial of statehood.

The Chicago Tribune is running a series of articles in its Travel Section to pick out twenties.

These are 20 things every person in Illinois needs to eat at one time or another:

1..  Horseshoe--  Springfield and central Illinois.

2.  Pink Cookies--  Southern Illinois

3.  Birria--  at the Birrieria Zaragoza in Archer Heights.  (A Mexican dish)


Friday, March 9, 2018

Sycamore Drivers Going Through Stop Signs in 1943

From the January 3, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1943, 75 Years Ago.

"Observation shows that many Sycamore motorists are becoming careless at the stop signs, following removal of much of the ice at the various intersections.  When ice covered the streets, and there was a chance of becoming stalled at some of the street intersections, auto drivers became accustomed to driving past the crossing to avoid wasting gas to get going again.

"Now that most them approaches to the stop, streets have been cleared of the treacherous ice, it seems the auto drivers still cling to the former practice and drive through the stop signs, even if they delay traffic approaching from each direction."

Stop Running Through Those Stop Signs Guys!!  --RoadDog

A Fire At the Station at Fourth and Lincoln Highway in DeKalb in 1917

From the September 20, 2017, MidWeek  (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1917, 100 Years Ago

"Fire of an undetermined origin caused some alarm last night at the DeKalb Independent filling station at Fourth and Lincoln Highway.  A transient car pulled in for service and the driver was using a can to fill up his gas tank when the car suddenly burst into flames.

"The attendant at the station, while attending another car on the other side of the drive saw the flames and with the aid of a Pyrene extinguisher squelched the flames almost immediately."

A Scary Time At the Ol' Station.  --RoadDog

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Warm Here We Come-- Part 12: That Horrible Florida Highway-79 Bonifay to Ebro

Alabama Highway 167 is a nice cruise.  Two-lane road and little traffic, all the way to Florida where it turns into Florida Highway 79 and goes straight to Panama City Beach (PCB).

In Florida it remains two lanes to Bonifay where I-10 crosses it.

Eventually, and I say EVENTUALLY, the drive from Bonifay to PCB will be fantastic when its four lane all the way with 65 mph speed limit.  Like a limited access road.  But not at this time.

From Bonifay to near Ebro they are making it four lane.  It does not appear there has been any progress made since we last drove it last February.  And, even though with the exception of one small area, there is NO CONSTRUCTION going on, it is 45 mph the whole way.  I really hate when the speed limit is dropped for construction and there is no construction going on.

Making it worse, the Florida folks who drive it are pretty insistent on going much, much faster than 45 mph.  I mean 65 moph.  Just no way I am going to go 20 miles over the speed limit and especially in another state.

Sorry Guys.  --RoadLimit