Day 6: July 30, 2012
MO, KS, & OK
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When the time came to leave Carthage, I slipped by the De Soto dealer and the drive-in theater. Both were quiet this morning but the theater was busy as recently as last night.

Ron Hart at the Boots had mentioned a soda fountain equipped place in Webb City for breakfast and that's where I went. The food wasn't earthshaking but it was quite good and was very nicely priced. A good recommendation. The visitors center is also in Webb City and the 1960 Nash Metropolitan is in the center.

I don't know if it's an actual law but I know that something won't let me pass this viaduct near the Kansas border without taking a picture. Four Women on the Route is essentially open by appointment these days and was, as expected, closed when I reached there. The former Eisler's Brothers Store, now called Nelson's, was open and looking pretty. I did approach and drive over the rainbow bridge but I liked the distant view for posting. I actually entered and explored the visitors center in Baxter Springs this time. Very cool with some neat displays and lots of information.

There are two sections of 1922 nine foot wide highway between Miami and Afton, Oklahoma. One I hadn't driven at all and the other I drove just once in 1999. Today I drove them both. The longer one is first when west bound and is the one I'd driven before. I tried to duplicate the 1999 photo on this site's home page but, not only did I not match the location very well, the car doesn't look quite right. The Afton Station sign is right across from where the first nine foot sections reaches the modern road. The last three pictures are from the shorter section. Actually, the last two are beyond where that section reaches the modern highway. There is a very short stretch there and that is where the 2010 marker stands. The last picture is as straight on the marker as I could get without including political signs posted at the corner. A readable version is here.

I knew that Laurel would not be at Afton Station today but stopped in to say hello to whoever was there and to photograph a new acquisition. New to the station is a U-Haul truck painted by Bob Waldmire and donated by xxx and Marion Clark. I parked a few yards from it the asked where it was when I went inside. The first picture is of another bit of Waldmire art. It may have been here when I last visited but I don't think I photographed it. My big mistake was not parking near the truck without seeing it. It was chatting with Robin and Phil, who were doing a fine job minding the place, without getting their picture. Sorry.

I bought a tank of gas in Afton and could chose, for the first time as far as I know, between gasoline with or without alcohol. The premium for "without" was ten cents a gallon. While in the station, I heard a siren and watched the Afton fire truck speed around the corner and past the used (I'm assuming) rock lot.


When one of the (not quite) twin bridges over Bird Creek had to be replaced, a restaurant names Molly's preserved parts of it by using them in their entrance. The remaining bridge can be seen between the Molly's vase and the bridge railing. The second picture was shot from the road leading to Molly's and shows the remaining twin and the plain-Jane replacement.

Catoosa's Big Blue Whale has a smile for everybody and is always a fun stop. I remain amazed that I once drove by this roadside attraction without seeing it. Another part of the whale complex, Noah's Ark, has been dug from the weeds and may get restored. Until that happens, best keep out.

In Tulsa, I checked into my hotel and relaxed a bit before being chauffeured to dinner with this illustrious group of 66ers. That's Laurel Kane next to me with Ron Warnick and Emily Priddy across th table. Laurel runs Afton Station, Ron runs Route66News.com, and Emily "works" at the hotel where I'm staying. Her title is "PR Coordinator" and her duties consist of running a blog and assorted social media and driving up and down Route 66 in the Tulsa area. Sure seems like money for nothing and your kicks for free. Our road talk continued way past the meal. They didn't really have to toss us out to close but it could have happened.

This is the hotel that employs Emily and where I'm sleeping. The Campbell Hotel had been closed for a number of years and just recently reopened following extensive renovations. It sits right on Route 66, and is locally owned but is not by any means a mom 'n' pop operation. One of Emily's accomplishments at the Campbell is arranging a 20% discount for folks traveling Historic Route 66. Even with that discount, however, this is the highest priced bed I'm sleeping in on a trip that includes a night at LaPosada in Winslow, Arizona. That's not a complaint -- it's a very nice bed in an extremely nice setting -- but an observation that this, like LaPosada, is slightly above my normal price range.

The first inside shot is of the lobby with the lounge beyond and the front desk visible to the left. There is an elevator but the stairs are so much nicer. The last inside shot is the view from the door of my room. The view inside my room is here. All the rooms are themed and I stayed in the Leon Russell room. Check out the carpet, the pillows, and the guy up on the tight wire. Yep, I'm normally a no frills sort of guy but I do appreciate them now and then and the frills at the Campbell are pretty cool.


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