Day 13: July 1, 2013
Happy Birthday LHA

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There was no problem starting the car and getting from downtown to the hotel on Sunday. I had a spare fuel pump in the trunk and figured I'd get to that in the morning. I checked in, headed to my room and, as I leaked in yesterday's summary, discovered my laptop would not boot. The fan had been making some noise now and then and once I'd even seen a "FAN ERROR" on the screen but it went away when power was cycled. Powering on resulted in the error being displayed and a few beeps being emitted before the machine shut itself down. There were certainly no repair shops open on Sunday so that became another problem for the morning.

I had a fine time at the jam packed tour wrap-up event and stopped at my car for something before heading to my room. Art Ackerman, who had been just behind me in the parade was parked in the next space. "So when you going to start this job?" he asked, referring to the fuel pump swap. I mumbled something about "the morning", he responded with something about "lending a hand", and the hood was soon raised. It wasn't long before Milton Wheeler was also lending a hand. As a result, the old was off and the new was on long before full darkness. To no one's surprise, an ancient metal fuel line had not survived the operation but that just emphasized the wisdom of not waiting until morning to tackle the thing. In the morning, Mike Curtis took me to drop off the computer (more on that later) and pick up the necessary parts. The car was running jus a few ticks past noon.

There are many stories of people helping others on this tour. I probably could have found others to help me and it's a certainty that those three would have helped out anyone needing it. That doesn't lessen in the slightest my appreciation for what Art, Milton, and Mike did for me.

When I got the car started, I started angling for a gas station and almost got tangled in the Packard parade which had assembled at the hotel before heading to the Arch. I arrived at the Arch behind them by the amount of time it takes to pump a dozen gallons of gas. "Civilians" were supposed to park away from the Arch and ride shuttle buses. Tour participants were among those allowed to park at the Arch. I missed the entrance to the designated parking area and drove by the front of the Arch before turning around. I drove by people waiting for the advertised Parade of Packards but the cars had turned off before reaching that point. The Packards were all parked by the time I was and the would be spectators were starting to move on.

I walked over the small bridge in front of the Arch. The dozen or so Packards were parked under cover in a semi-circle. It wasn't a great set up for taking pictures of the group but it was good for looking over the individual cars. Daniel Hershberger's 1927 auto camp was at the right end of the semi-circle. A large tent in the center was where the anniversary ceremony had, presumedly, taken place on the arrival of the Packards. Some speeches were still being delivered there, with Will Rogers as MC, even after I arrived. They included a reading of the US Senate resolution honoring the Lincoln Highway's Centennial. The recognition is great but it's somewhat unfortunate that they got the wrong date.

Three 1913 dates have significance. July 1 was the day the Lincoln Highway Association was incorporated in Detroit, Michigan. That is the event being celebrated today at the Arch. The first announcement of a complete though short lived route, the Proclamation Route, occurred on September 14 and the nationwide dedication of the route, complete with celebrations and bonfires, took place on October 31. So the resolution "Recognizing June 30, 2013, as the centennial of the Lincoln Highway..." isn't quite perfect but it's still a good thing.

I next headed to the Arch itself and found Michael and Suzanne Wallis signing books on the walkway. It is my understanding that the bricks in the last picture are those that Brian Cassler helped obtain and deliver from a section of Lincoln Highway in Canton, Ohio. I missed a dedication ceremony that was held in the morning. Brian Butko was signing books in a tent next to the Lincoln Highway Trading Post where his books were available. Apparently this arrangement allowed some closer than desired contact with the local wild life and it's possible that a tick was climbing onto Brian's shoe as this picture was taken.

I did not enter the museum section of the Arch (I did in 2009) but spent some time on the ground floor then wandered around outside until it was time for Cece Otto's performance in that big tent across the way. Lynn Asp, from Lincoln Highway Association Headquarters in Franklin Grove, Illinois, accompanied Cece with no rehearsal. Both Lynn and Cece delivered.

Then it was time for my first ride, at least as an adult, in a Model T. I sometimes think that I rode a few times in my great-grandfather's green T but the memories are dim. Today I rode with Ken in his 1922 Model T as it easily negotiated some dirt two-tracks beyond the tent.

Not too long after my Model T excursion, I received a call telling me my computer was ready. I had called two places in the morning. The first explained that they would run three days of diagnostics then order any required parts which would probably arrive in two business days with installation to follow. When I explained my situation and asked for something a bit speedier, I was told that was their standard operating procedure. I thanked them for answering the phone and called the second place. Computer Warehouse #4 said exactly what I wanted to hear on the phone. They understood my situation and that I already knew what the problem was. Although they doubted they had the fan in stock, they would look though their used bin and have it ready today if they found one. If not, it would likely be a couple of days. They didn't find a used fan but still got the machine back to me quickly by cleaning the fan and replacing dried out lubricant. This is definitely the place to take your computer problems in the Kearney, Nebraska, area.

The day ended back at the Arch for the big gala with dinner (BBQ from Dickinson), dancing (to the Bobby Lane Orchestra), and divulging (by Brian Butko of some of the stories behind the new book).

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