Day 24: November 24, 2016
Happy Thanksgiving

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I'm not sure that the Prairie Lodge Motel qualifies as a cabin court since each cabin contains two units but it's close. It's also clean, cozy, and comfortable and reasonably priced. My room is here.

This concludes my hunt for Madonnas. With this stop in Council Grove, Kansas, I have now visited all twelve of the Madonna of the Trail monuments. I even remembered to photograph both panels that are specific to the location. They are here and here. The panel at the park entrance talks about this being a good place to "Rendezvous on the Trail". The Madonna has the park pretty much to herself with Guardian of the Grove occupying a simiarly sized park across the street.

Not far from the Madonna of the Trail park, an open shelter covers the remnants of a tree that an information panel says "once witnessed a council" between the U.S. and Kaw and Osage Indians. This is the Council Oak. The stone slab in front of the shelter holds panels related to the tree, the park, and the benefactor. Nearer the street there is a two sided DAR Santa Fe Trail marker. A cute touch is designating a nearby tree Council Oak Jr.

Before leaving Council Grove I grabbed pictures of a multi-message ghost sign and some historic buildings including a daylight view of the Hays House.

I was tired of smiley-face water towers right after I saw my first one but this I could live with a little longer. It's in Tipton, Missouri, and was originally the work of a pool table manufacturer. It reportedly went blank when the company moved out of town but later returned.

Approaching Jefferson City from the west, you can see the capitol beneath an overpass.

These are just a couple of views that caught my eye and got recorded as I cruised through eastern Missouri. Still on US-50, I crossed the Mississippi and out a few miles of Illinois behind me before calling it a day. I checked into a Super 8 which was next to an open Bob Evans. They offer Thanksgiving Day specials including turkey and dressing but I opted for ham. I'm not much on the rituals of the day and my gratitude isn't directed to any single person or thing but I know I have more to be thankful for than many and I think I feel more thankful than many as well. It's good to have a day to really focus on that.

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