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Trailer for “Route 66 Revisited” September 26, 2014

Posted by Ron Warnick in Motorcycles, Movies, Road trips, Route 66 Associations.

In recent days, the Czech Route 66 Association posted this trailer for its upcoming “Route 66 Revisited” documentary.

The film premieres in the Czech Republic on Oct. 22 2014 in Zlin and on Oct. 24 in Prague.

Class of 2014 for Oklahoma Route 66 Hall of Fame announced September 13, 2014

Posted by Ron Warnick in Books, Events, Museums, People, Route 66 Associations.
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Author Marian Clark of Tulsa and the late J.M. Davis of Claremore will be inducted Oct. 18 into the Oklahoma Route 66 Hall of Fame at the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum in Clinton, according to a release from the Oklahoma Route 66 Association.

The ceremony is slated for 2 p.m. and will be free to the public. A plaque for each winner will be placed on the Wall of Honor at the museum. An association panel selects two winners — one living and one dead — from a list of nominations every two years.

Marian Clark

Clark is most famous for writing cookbooks, using recipes from Route 66 restaurants or facsimiles of dishes from long-gone eateries, including “The Route 66 Cookbook” and “Hogs on 66.”

Clark is a native of the Texas Panhandle but has lived in Tulsa for more than 30 years. She resides a few blocks from the Mother Road, which kindled her interest in the highway.

Davis managed the Mason Hotel in Claremore, but became famous internationally for his enormous gun and arms collection and the museum that eventually was built to house it, the J.M. Davis Arms and Historical Museum that opened on Route 66 in Claremore in 1969. Davis died in 1973 and was buried on the museum grounds.

The ceremony next month also will mark the 25th anniversary of the nonprofit Oklahoma Route 66 Association, which aims to “promote, enhance, perpetuate, encourage the development of tourism, economic opportunities, and historic resources and landmarks along Oklahoma’s section of Route 66.”

Route 66 Alliance revealed as the group proposing a Route 66 museum in Tulsa August 12, 2014

Posted by Ron Warnick in Attractions, Route 66 Associations, Towns.
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Prominent Route 66 author Michael Wallis and the Route 66 Alliance he leads are part of the group that submitted a proposal to the City of Tulsa to build a Route 66 museum, revealed the Tulsa World.

City planner Dennis Whitaker and other unnamed city officials confirmed to the newspaper it was the Route 66 Alliance that submitted the only proposal for a museum on the site, which is on Riverside Drive and Southwest Boulevard (aka Route 66) in Tulsa. The site also contains the Route 66-themed Cyrus Avery Centennial Plaza and the East Meets West statue and the original 11th Street Bridge.

Mayor Dewey Bartlett late last year announced that the city was seeking proposals for the project, which is commonly referred to as the Route 66 Experience.

The city’s vision for the center, as outlined in the RFP, includes a thematic interpretive space, retail space — including a restaurant — and on-site parking.

“The facility’s amenities should reach out to all age groups, complement the surrounding river-downtown experience, be a draw for tourism and be an amenity to local residents,” Whitaker said.

The facility, which would overlook the Arkansas River, could also serve as an outdoor staging area for races or car shows, Whitaker said.

The city has allocated $6.5 million for the project. If its proposal is approved, the Alliance would have to raise the rest of the money. Whitaker said there is no timetable of when the City of Tulsa would make a decision on the proposal.

Wallis is best-known for writing the best-selling “Route 66: The Mother Road” during the early 1990s and voiced the Sheriff of Radiator Springs in the 2006 Disney-Pixar film “Cars.” He and Rick Freeland have run the nonprofit Alliance for several years in an office at the Tulsa Historical Society.

The Tulsa World did not reach Wallis for comment. Wallis also did not officially comment about the proposal in an email to Route 66 News. However, he said he did not tip off the newspaper on who or what group was behind the Route 66 Experience proposal.

Tulsa has long desired to have an anchor Route 66 attraction because travelers often bypass the city on the interstates.

The museum complex was part of the Vision 2025 sales-tax package passed by voters in 2003. The city eventually decided to ask for a public-private development because of the municipality’s tight budgets in recent years.

(An artist’s rendering of Tulsa’s Route 66 museum, circa 2003, via Vision 2025)

2014 inductees to Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame announced July 9, 2014

Posted by Ron Warnick in Businesses, History, Route 66 Associations, Signs.
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Three inductees — including a previously announced historic bar in Edwardsville — were announced to the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame during the Illinois Route 66 Association’s Motor Tour last month.

Detail on the inductees may be read here. Here’s a brief overview of each:

Hi-Way Cafe and Tavern, Edwardsville — Sicilian immigrants Frank and Dora Catalano opened the combination liquor store, cafe and tavern along Vandalia Street (aka Route 66) in 1934. Their advertising slogan was “Good Cheer with Good Beer.” The business eventually expanded and engulfed the house next door. It was known for friendly service, spaghetti and biscuits-and-gravy. The Catalanos died many years ago, but the tavern recently reopened as the Hi-Way after being closed for two years.

Postville Courthouse, Lincoln — The building, originally erected in 1840 in the village of Postville, was one of the many places in Illinois where a young Abraham Lincoln practiced law. Eventually the county seat was moved, and the building was used a store, post office and residence. In 1929, Henry Ford bought, dismantled and re-erected the courthouse at his Greenfield Village in Dearborn, Michigan. However, a replica of the building was built in 1953 on what turned out to be alignment of Route 66.

Nelch and Son Concrete, Springfield — The longtime business is located at 900 S. Ninth St., on a 1930-1940 alignment of Route 66. Not only did the business play a role in constructing roads in the region, but also with many buildings, sidewalks and parking lots. The company was founded by Henry Nelch, the son of German immigrants, in 1896. The company is considered to be the oldest family-owned company in Illinois. The company also has a historic neon sign, which is hopes to restore in the coming years.

(Image of Hi-Way Tavern courtesy of 66Postcards.com; image of Postville Courthouse by OZinOH; image of Nelch and Son sign by the_mel)

A chat with the operator of Texas Ivy Antiques March 4, 2014

Posted by Ron Warnick in Businesses, People, Route 66 Associations.
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In his ongoing “Genuine Route 66 Life” video series, KC Keefer interviewed Dora Meroney, operator of Texas Ivy Antiques along the Sixth Street Historic District (aka Route 66) in Amarillo.

Not only does Meroney sell Route 66 memorabilia and other items in a converted 1920s house, but she serves as president of the Old Route 66 Association of Texas.

Route 66 program is accepting grant applications January 10, 2014

Posted by Ron Warnick in Businesses, Preservation, Route 66 Associations.
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The Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program announced Thursday it has opened its 2014 season for accepting applications for cost-share grants.

The deadline to submit an application is March 28. It requires a minimum investment of 50 percent of the cost.

Nearly $1.8 million in grants have been awarded since 2001. Forms and more about the program’s guidelines can be found here.

If you’re a Route 66 business owner who needs a new roof, climate-control system, or some other essential work, I encourage you to apply. If you need technical help filling the application, you can contact the program’s office or your local historical preservation agency.

(Image of the Hill Top Motel sign in Kingman, Ariz., by Mitch Barrie via Flickr. The Hill Top was a recipient of a Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program grant in 2013.)

John Lasseter’s introduction at the Route 66 roundtable December 7, 2013

Posted by Ron Warnick in Events, Movies, Route 66 Associations.
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The folks at the World Monuments Fund a few hours ago posted this video that played at the beginning of the “Route 66: The Road Ahead” roundtable a few weeks ago near Cars Land at Disney California Adventure.

If you’re a newcomer to Route 66, John Lasseter directed the Route 66-inspired 2006 Disney-Pixar film “Cars” and is CEO of Pixar. Lasseter also is a member of the Route 66 Alliance.

Introduction to Route 66: The Road Ahead from World Monuments Fund on Vimeo.

An initial report about the roundtable — including a proposed merger of two national Route 66 associations — is here.

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