Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Like Boo, Five More Places to Scare You Around Chicagoland-- Part 2: Realm of Terror



Also get Massacre and Freak Show 3D.  Another 10,000 square feet to scare you.


Round Lake Beach

A very dedicated "Scare Staff."



Come for the scares, stay for the rides.  One or the other likely to scare you.



Located in the home of the former Elgin Casket Company.  Really.



A Two-Fer with Basement of the Dead and Shattered Haunted House.

Mighty Scared.  --RoadDog

Monday, October 29, 2018

Like Boo Time Around Chicagoland-- Part 1: House of Torment

From the October 12, 2018, Chicago Tribune  "Haunted Houses."

Being a listing of Top Haunted Houses Around Town.


Zion   You can even get buried alive.


Melrose Park  In a warehouse with two parts to fright.


Crest Hill  Long-time haunted house  Red and white checkered clown room.


Morton Grove   Slenderman, Dead By Dawn


Lockport   Take a shuttle ride to it.  For an extra $99 you can have someone be a personal target for whole tour.

Prices for these:  $20 to $50.

Not Cheap Getting Scared These Days.  --RoadBoo

Friday, October 26, 2018

2018 IHSA Football Playoffs-- Part 1: US-12 (Rand Road) vs. US-14 (Northwest Highway)

Along with the Lincoln Highway-Route 66 Matchup, I also do another one between two important roads on Chicago's northwest area.



Fremd (Palatine)  (5-4)


Hersey  (Arlington Heights)  (8-1)
Lake Zurich   (6-3)


Wauconda  5-4


Richmond-Burton  (Richmond and Spring Grove)  8-1



Barrington  (6-3)
Maine South  (Des Plaines)


Hersey  (Arlington Hts)  (8-1)
Maine West  (Des Plaines)  8-1)


Cary-Grove  (Cary)  6-3
Prairie Ridge  (Crystal Lake)  7-2
Crystal Lake South  (5-4)


Woodstock North   (5-4)

So, US-14 leads 9-5 at this point.

This showdown started in 2013.    The record stands as US-14 (Northwest Highway) 3  US-12  (Rand Road) 1 and one tie.

Good Luck to Both Roads. --RoadDog

Thursday, October 25, 2018

2018 IHSA Football Playoffs: The Lincoln Highway

These are the teams from high schools in the playoffs located along the Lincoln Highway in Illinois.


Plainfield South (7-2)
St. Charles East  (5-4)
Lincoln Way East  (9-0)
West Aurora  (8-1)


Lincoln Way West  (7-2)
Lincoln Way Central  (8-3)
Batavia  (9-0)
DeKalb  (8-1)
St. Charles North  (6-3)


Rochelle  (5-4)
Sterling  (8-1)
Joliet Catholic  (5-4)


Dixon  (6-3)


Sterling-Newman  (8-1)


Aurora Christian  (6-3)

Lincoln Highway has 19 teams in the playoffs.

Good Luck Lincoln Highway.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

256 Teams, 8 Champions, 8 Champions, 5 Weeks: IHSA Playoffs Begin: Route 66

A fun time of the year begins this Friday, the Illinois High School Association begins its five week countdown to a grand champion in 8 classes.

Every year, I have my own playoffs between Lincoln Highway and Route 66.  I have been doing it since 2012 when Lincoln Highway won.  Overall since then Lincoln Highway leads 4-2.  Final winner is last team standing.

These are the Route 66 teams:


Plainfield South (7-2)
Edwardsville   (^-3)
Bolingbrook  (7-2)


East St. Louis  (7-2)
Normal Community  (8-1)


Normal West  (8-1)
Springfield  (6-3)
Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin  (7-2)
Chatham-Glenwood  (8-2)
Bloomington  (7-2)


Joliet Catholic  (5-4)


Pontiac  (8-1)


Dwight (6-3)
Wilmington  (6-3)
Carlinville  (9-0)
Williamsville  (8-1)


Staunton  (5-4)

Route 66 has 17 teams in the playoffs.

Good Luck Route 66   --RoadDog

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

NIU Homecoming 2018-- Part 1: Plank Road and Ill. Highway 23


We have been to most homecomings for Northern Illinois since graduating.  Occasionally, however, not for the game and due to a late start from home, we did not see the game.

Woke up late to the first frost f the season.

When we finally got underway, we drove the old way to DeKalb, Il-47 through Huntley to Plank Road to Il. 23.  We used to go through Sycamore on 23, but now use the new Peace Road as a Sycamore bypass to 23 south of Sycamore.  (We drove the old way because right now there is all the road construction on Il-176 to Marengo and on Il-23 south of there.  We started taking this to avoid the horrendous traffic mess that is Huntley, Illinois.)

Plank Road was built in 1850, and, as the name implied was made of wooden planks to make travel easier.  This was a long plank road.  There were toll booths along it.  Now, of course, it is paved.

Illinois Highway 23 between Sycamore and DeKalb was one of the first paved roads in Illinois and was finished as a two lane in 1917.  It became a four-lane super highway in 1941, just as World War II was about to begin.  Today it is an extremely congested, stoplighted highway.


Monday, October 22, 2018

Along 66, September 2018: Black Experience on 66 and a New Oklahoma Travel Guide

SEPTEMBER 21--  There is a new Oklahoma Route 66 guide put out by the state tourism department.  It highlights more than 120 state attractions along the road.

I thought the old one was very good myself, but look forward to seeing a new one.

SEPTEMBER 22--  A new marker in Bloomington, Illinois, tells of the city's parks being segregated.against Blacks during the Jim Crow era.  This took place at Miller Park.  Negroes had very bad conditions where they were able to go.

A part of Route 66's history that needs to be told.  It was a great road for Whites, but not so great for Blacks.


Saturday, October 20, 2018

Along 66, September 2018: Cucamonga and Parkview

SEPTEMBER 8--   Cucamonga Service Station gets government award for preservation.  In Rancho Cucamonga, California.  One of the prettiest of the old gas stations.

SEPTEMBER 17--  The rebuilt Parkview Inn in Bloomington, Illinois, may reopen in November.

It was destroyed by fire two years ago.  It opened in 1928 and was on the 1930-1940 Route 66 alignment on Morris Avenue.

Never eaten there but will look for it the next time through.  Since the Bloomington-Normal area has finally accepted its Route 66 heritage, we will now drive through it instead of taking I-55 around it.


Friday, October 19, 2018

Cruisin' Tunes, 1973-- Part 3: "Sail On Sailor"

I AM THE SLIME--  Frank Zappa
SAIL ON SAILOR--  Beach Boys

DO THE STRAND--  Roxy Music
IF YOU WANT TO GET TO HEAVEN--  Ozark Mountain Daredevils

DANCING DAYS--  Led Zeppelin
DRIFT AWAY--  Dobie Gray
JUST ONE VICTORY--  Todd Rundgren


Name That Tune (from the above songs):  :"I Never Read It In A Book, I Never Saw It In A Show."    Answer below.  --RoadDog

"If You Want To Get To Heaven"

Cruisin' Tunes 1973-- Part 2: "Rock and Roll, Hoochie Coo"

Music to pop that old cassette into the car player and cruise down the road.  Wait, my car doesn't have a cassette player.  NO FAIR!!!

LOST WAGES--  Steely Dan
MY LOVE--  Paul McCartney & Wings

BLINDED BY THE LIGHT--  Bruce Springsteen
READY OR NOT--  Jackson Browne

GIVE ME THREE STEPS--  Lynyrd Skynyrd
LET'S GET IT ON--  Marvin Gaye

Name That Tune (from the above songs):  "I Was Cutting the Rug Down At A Place Called The Jug."  Answer Below.  --RoadDog

"Give Me Three Steps"

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Cruisin' 1973 Tunes-- Part 1: "LaGrange"

WXRT's Saturday Morning Flashback  September 22, 2018.

From 9 to noon at 93.1 FM.

MIND GAMES--  John Lennon
MONEY--  Pink Floyd
SHA BA DA DU MA--  Steve Miller Band

STIR IT UP--  Bob Marley

ANGIE--  Rolling Stones   This one always reminds me of dtiving back and forth between Des Plaines and Round Lake for my first year teaching job.

CHINA GROVE--  Doobie Brothers   This one reminds me of driving out to Galena, Illinois, for out honeymoon.
HIGHER GROUND--  Stevie Wonder

Name That Tine (from the above songs):  "With No Loving In Out Souls, And No Money In Our Coats."  Answer below.  --RoadDog


Trip to "Cheesehead Land"-- Part 5: Wisconsin Politics and Brewer Fever


Enjoyed the breakfast at the Baymont.  Lots of news on the Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh.  Seems strange to me that these women would all of a sudden have recollections of way past things like this at this time.  Such a coincidence isn't a coincidence.

And, Wisconsin politics are every bit as low as those in Illinois.  All that mudslinging.

And everyone has Brewer Fever right now with this run at the NL Central pennant.

Our Chevy dealer had told us that the battery  in the '11 Malibu was really low a few months back.  Evidently they were right as the car died and needed a jump.  Thank goodness Glenn was there as he really knows his car stuff.

Jumped the car and left it on the whole trip home.  As usual, we encountered some traffic jams around Milwaukee.

Then Liz drove the Malibu to Ray Chevrolet and I followed in the truck.  We dropped the Malibu off and went over to the Squaw Bar and sure had a great time as the Bears destroyed Tampa Bay.  Both the Cubs and Brewers won so will have a one-game playoff tomorrow to determine the NL Central winner.

Go Cubs.  If Not, I Can Take the True Blue Brew Crew.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Trip to "Cheesehead Land"-- Part 4: The Wedding


We left the Brown Baer Bar and went to the Osthoff for cocktail hour with open bar and lots of hors d'oeuvres passed around when you could flag one of the fast-moving waiters down.

Again, a proud Wisconsin beer in tap, Spotted Cow from New Glarus.  Sat with Kevin and Kelly.who were glad to be nearing the end if the wedding.

Much relief.  Now they can have fun.

As is the new custom, there was no greeting line as we entered the ballroom (something I don't miss)   They do a lot of weddings and events at the Osthoff and their people keep everything moving along expertly (if not expensively).

However, another new custom seems that the newlyweds do not walk around to tables to thank people for coming.  We never had any words with them at all.  I don't much care for this.


Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Trip to "Cheesehead Land"-- Part 3: A Wedding and the Brown Baer

September 18, 2018, Saturday

Saturday there wasn't much to do until the wedding which took place outside at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake.  I did find out that the area is famous for its Road America Race Course, located between Plymouth and Elkhart Lake.  And, they have Indy Car racing so one of these days I might go there for a race.

Today was quite chilly, but the wedding was held outside anyway by the gazebo.  Beautiful scenery, but still quite cool and uncomfortable.  We had two hours to kill before the reception.

Glen, Barb, Julie, Liz and I went to a local bar/pub called Brown Baer  (Baer is the name of one of the owners) which is eye-catching in the fact that it must have a hundred beer taps outside it.  A real nice bar.  At one time it was a blacksmith shop.


Monday, October 15, 2018

Trip "Cheesehead Land"-- Part 2: Wedding Rehearsal Dinner

September 28, 2018

We stayed at the Baymont Hotel in Plymouth because we were in Wisconsin for the marriage of Tim and Jordan, the son of Kevin and Kelly (Usual Suspects) , good friends of ours,  Unfortunately, the Osthoff Resort on Rlkhart Lake, where the wedding and reception took place is a whole lot more money than we care to pay, so we saved about a third of the price but had to drive eight miles to the Ostoff.

Today, we were at the wedding rehearsal dinner.  With some difficulty, we found the Ostoff (which is in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, even though it is a huge place).  We had a pizza buffet and I must admit this to be some of the best and most unique pizzas I ever had.  Plus, they had Spotted Cow Beer, from New Glarus, Wisconsin, in a keg.

Got together with other friends Barb and Glenn from the Usual Suspects and talked with Kevin and Kelly.

We didn't stay long as I was more than a bit tired from all that traffic driving earlier.


A Trip To "Cheesehead Land"-- Part 1: Traffic, Traffic and More Traffic


We drove to Wisconsin today, taking smaller roads up into Wisconsin to avoid the ridiculous tolls in Illinois, on I-94.  Then it was on that road to Milwaukee.  Most of the time we had road construction as a huge project us underway on this heavily traveled road between Milwaukee and Chicago.  At several points we had huge traffic jams.

We arrived in Milwaukee at 3 and found that its rush hour was well underway and encountered two more major jams.  To say that this was not much of a fun drive would be an understatement.  Then, we took I-43 north and soon encountered another traffic jam.

We were sure glad to get to Wis.-57 which we took to the Baymont Hotel in Plymouth where we stayed he next two nights.

Sure Not Much Of A Fun Drive.  --RoadDog

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Along Lincoln Highway, June 2018: Saving the L.H. Bridge

From the June 18, 2018, Channel 9 KCRG News (Iowa),  "Our Town Tama-Toledo:  Preserving the Lincoln Highway bridge."

A group of devoted people in Tama and Toledo are vowing not to lose it.  Townspeople have collected money and put lettering on the bridge.

Construction on the bridge started in 1915 and it is the only one left in the country with the Lincoln Highway letters on its sides.  It was built by Paul Kingsley from Strawberry Point, Iowa.

Traffic is hurting the old bridge, especially trucks.  The state has suggested tearing it out in favor of a newer bridge.

A park has been created by it and foreign travelers visit it,


Friday, October 12, 2018

Along Lincoln Highway, May 2018: Tama Lincoln Highway Festival

From the May 18, 2018, Tama (Iowa) News-Herald and Toledo Chronicle  "Tama Lincoln Highway Bridge Festival underway today."  John Speer.

It will continue for two days and is the 34th annual festival, featuring a carnival, parade and music.

A bit late for this year's festival, but will happen again next year in May so mark your calendars.  Of course, the centerpiece of this festival is that wonderful bridge.


Thursday, October 11, 2018

Along 66, September 2018: Underpass Cafe in Missouri

SEPTEMBER 11--  The restoration of the Underpass Cafe near Phillipsburg, Missouri, is continuing.

The long-closed property has been cleared  It was named after the low-clearance Frisco Railroad bridge over Route 66.

A sign telling its story will be erected as well.

A prefabricated gas station opened on the site in 1941 and a concrete block restaurant was added in 1950.


A Runaway Horse in DeKalb in 1918

From the September 5, 2018, MidWeek  "Looking Back"

1918, 100 Years Ago.

"A farmer's horse hitched to a single buggy became frightened at a puffing engine lst night while waiting to get  across Seventh Street in DeKalb and when the gates were raised, the animal started on a gallop and became unmanageable.

"Fortunately, the North Seventh Street  thoroughfare was not a busy one at that time of the accident and the runaway horse had the entire street to himself."

Fun and Games With Horses.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Along 66, October 2018: Illinois Rock and Roll Museum Fundraiser On Oct. 11

I usually run these Along 66 posts a month behind time, but in the case of something happening like this, I put it up earlier.

SEPTEMBER 29--   On October 11, the Illinois Rock and Roll Museum in Joliet will host a fundraiser.  They have a spot for the museum picked out and are currently negotiating with the owners and hope to be open sometime in 2019.

The fundraiser will be at  the Jacob Henry Mansion at 20 S. Eastern Avenue.  Tickets are $50 VIP and $25.  Ronnie Rice (of the New Colony Six) and Skip Griparis (one man show) will perform.

Illinois acts include Chicago, REO Speedwagon, Cheap Trick, Buddy Guy and Smashing Pumpkins to name a few.

Looking Forward To This New Museum.  --RoadDog

Monday, October 8, 2018

Along 66, September 2018: Rails to Trails Project Involves the Sidewalk Highway

These items are taken from the Route 66 News site.  I only pick the ones that are of most interest to me.  The site has an article everyday, so if you want to know what is going on along the Mother Road, check it out.


Officials in Miami, Oklahoma, will use to Rails to Trails to rehabilitate the 9-foot-wide section of Route 66 between Miami and Afton.

The eight mile stretch will be turned into a walking, biking and hiking trail.

The Sidewalk Highway, Ribbon Road was built in 1922 and made narrow so that it could cover more mileage.

Always love driving this road.


Along 66, August 2018: Lebanon, Missouri's Rt. 66 Signs


Lebanon, Missouri, is set to double its number of Route 66 signage in town.  They plan on adding 24 signs.

In addition, the town will be adding Route 66 banners along the alignments.

You can never have too much Route 66 signage.


Friday, October 5, 2018

Along 66, August 2018: 2018 Cost-Share Grants Announced

AUGUST 30--  The 2018 cost-share grants for Route 66 sites have been announced.  seven grants totaling $87,000 were given.

Since 2001, 146 have been given for a total of $2.17 million.

This year:

**  Painted Desert Trading Post in Holbrook, Az  $20,000
**  Risk reduction study for historic Route 66 bridges.  Univ. of Texas- El Paso$13,181

**  Pemco Gas Station  Tulsa, Ok.  $13,061
**  Threatt Dilling Station in Luther, Ok.  $5,000

**  Route 66 Gasconade Bridge at Hazelgreen, Missouti  $6,000
**  Ariston Cafe neon sign and window accent restoration in Litchfield, Illinois  $10,250

**  Route 66 Green Book sites National Register nominations  $20,000

Great To See This.  --RoadDog

Along 66, August 2018: Illinois Governor Brauner a Big 66 Fan

These stories are taken from the Route 66 News site on the internet.  I only take the stories of most interest to me and there are a lot of others, so if you want to know anything about what is going on along our favorite road, this is your go-to place.

AUGUST 29  Illinois Bruce Rauner led a parade of hundreds of motorcycles to four Route 66 sites to celebrate Illinois' Bicentennial.

**  Launching Pad Drive-In in Wilmington

**  Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum in Pontiac

**  Kelly's On 66 Restaurant in Lexington

**  The Mill in Lincoln

They started in Shorewood (near Joliet) and ended at the Governor's Mansion in Springfield where they had a barbecue.

It benefited the Chicago Honor Flight Association.

I do not always agree with the governor (but sure back him in the Madigan Wars), but it is hard to not like a governor who loves his motorcycle and Route 66.

Go Gov.!  --RoadGuv

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Along 66, August 2018: Blue Swallow Motel For Sale

AUGUST 28    The Blue Swallow Motel in Tucumcari, New Mexico, is up for sale.  Kevin and Nancy Mueller have had it fir eight years and are of the opinion it is now time to pass the torch.  They said they will continue operations as usual until it is sold.

They listed it at $1.2 million.  If I recall, when they bought it the price was around $150,000.

The motel was built in 1939 by W.A. Huggins.  It is one of the best-preserved motor courts in Route 66 with original attached garages, stucco walls and that 1950s eye-catcher of a neon sign.  It was put on the NRHP in 1993.

Lillian Redman owned it for more than forty years and her kindness to travelers was legendary.  Dale and Hilda Bakke bought it in the late 1990s.

We were fortunate enough to stay there one night; a real experience.  When it was last for sale I even thought about buying it but then decided it would be too much work.


Wednesday, October 3, 2018

A Question of Chilli or Chili?

In case you were wondering about the spelling of chilli in the last post, this spelling is native to Springfield and credited to the Joe Bockelman who started the Dew Chilli Parlors.

Like Cincinnati, , Springfield has a long-time reputation for its chili and calls itself the "Chilli Capital of the World."

I have had Springfield's chilli before and its ok, but nowhere as good as the Cincy Chili.


Along 66, August 2018: Dew Chilli in Springfield, Ill. Closes

AUGUST 25--  Dew Chilli Parlor in Springfield, Illinois, located a short distance off Route 66 is closing because of traffic and parking issues, but don't worry, they have two other locations in the city that remain open.

The one that is closing is at 1216 S. Fifth Street and has been there since 1954.  the other two locations are at 2312 Wabash Avenue (the 1926-1930 Route 66 alignment) and 301 N. Grand Ave. West.  A third Dew Chilli will be opening at 2690 S. Dirksen Parkway in October --  another Route 66 alignment.

Joe Bockelmann served his first bowl of chilli in 1909 while operating out of his house on Sixth Street (Rt 66) He was evicted from it and relocated to the South Fifth Street location that is closing in 1954 and ran it until his death in 1975.

We'll have to check one of these places out our next trip to Springfield as I have never heard of them.  I am familiar with some of the chilli places.


Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Cruising to 1967: "A Whiter Shade of Pale"

On today's Ten at Ten on Chicago's WDRV, 97.1 FM, Bob Stroud went to that special high school year of mine, 1967.

ITCHYCOO PARK--  Small Faces
PURPLE HAZE--  Jimi Hendrix

DANDELION--  Rolling Stones

KENTUCKY WOMAN--  Neil Diamond
I WAS MADE TO LOVE HER--  Stevie Wonder

In case you're wondering, the #1 song this date in 1967 was "The Letter" by the Box Tops.  The #1 selling album was "Sergeant Pepper's Lonely hearts Club Band" and the #1 movie at the box office  was "Bonnie and Clyde."

Name That Tune (from the above songs):  "'Scuse Me While I Kiss The Sky."    Answer below:  RoadDog

"Purple Haze"

Along 66, August 2018: Update on the Gasconade Bridge in Missouri

AUGUST 24--  The Gasconade River Bridge Guardians have issued a progress report:

The bridge, now closed, is in Hazelgreen, Missouri, not far east from Lebanon.

**  Have raised $7,760 so far.  Needed to get a $6,000 Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program grant.

**  They have contacted an engineer for a feasibility report.

**  Negotiations are ongoing with the Missouri IDOT for a year-to-year lease.

**  They are looking into insurance.

We were fortunate to get to drive across this bridge several times before it was closed for safety reasons.  It is a beautiful bridge and we really hope it can be saved.


Along 66, August 2018: Route 66 Icons and Cyrus Avery

AUGUST 19--  A Spanish director makes a documentary about living Route 66 icons.  Her name is Ana Ramon Rubic and the title of it is "Almost Ghosts."

Some of the Route 66ers featured are Harley Russell of the Sandhills Curiosity Shoppe in Erick, Oklahoma, Lowell Davis of Carthage, Missouri and Angelo Delgadillo of Seligman, Arizona.

It was filmed in March 2018.

Always a good thing to get them on film as they won't be with us forever.  We have met the last two.

AUGUST 20--  A rare photo of the "Father of Route 66" Cyrus Avery has been unveiled at the Historical Society of Missouri.


Monday, October 1, 2018

Me and the Cubs

Two things about the Chicago Cubs and myself.

1.  I have been keeping a journal since 1978 and in April 1981, I noted in it after an early season trip to Wrigley Field that I couldn't drink at Wrigley Field any more.

They HAD RAISED the price of beer to $1.50!!!!  How much does it cost now?

2.  Liz and I used to go to Chicago at least once or twice a month.  Even more often during the baseball season.  But when the Cubs got their lighting and Chicago put sticker-only parking around Wrigley Field and then expanded it to anywhere in Chicago that attracted people, that was it for us.

We now have been to Chicago about three times since 1988.

Oh Well.  --RoadDog

Good Ol' Neighborhood Fun At the Ball Park-- Part 8: So, Who's #1?

1.  FENWAY PARK  (Red Sox)  Here's what they say:

They renamed Yawkey Way, but the streetfest outside the park before games is a must-attend party and gives Fenway a slight edge over Wrigley's neighborhood bar scene.

Italian sausage, lobster rolls, live music, beer -- it's all good.

If only the Cubs were able to replicate it on Sheffield and Waveland.

Still Don't Agree.  --RoadCub