Route 66 Miles of Possibility Conference Locator map

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Day 1
Just in Casey

Day 2
Beans east, corn west.

Day 3
Learning, gawking, and singing along

Day 4

Day 5
Three Termini

Day 6

Postlude - Oct 24, 2017
With a fourth Route 66 Miles of Possibility Conference scheduled, it seems safe to think of it as an established event. I think that makes it not a blip but a watershed. It is one of the very few Route 66 related events bigger than a meal that people have actually paid to attend. In fact, as far as I can remember, the only other such event was last year's gathering in Los Angeles, and that was a one-time thing. Admittedly attendance has not been overwhelming and it involves just one of the eight Route 66 states, but it has happened three times and shows no sign of stopping. On the subject of attendance, there seems to be a sort of improvement in one area. At the first MOPCon in 2015, there were people who attended without attending. They were in Edwardsville during the conference and they were present at evening gatherings but they did not actually register (and pay) for the conference and consequently were not present at the presentations. The same is true of the conference in LA. I did not attend the 2016 MOPCon in Bloomington so don't know if that was the case there. It did not seem to be the case in Joliet.

Will there ever be a conference style event that roams up and down the entire road like those of the Lincoln Highway and Jefferson Highway Associations? I'm guessing not. At least not until Route 66 has a national membership based organization along the lines of the LHA and JHA and I don't see that happening anytime soon -- if ever.

October 23, 2017 (day 6)
I began the day by nullifying yesterday's last detour then had my last meal of the trip, just like the first one, on the National Road.

October 22, 2017 (day 5)
After reaching the end points of three different roads, I had a nice drive down US-35, although I got detoured more than I like.

October 21, 2017 (day 4)
After a full day of presentations and a visit to a newly opened brewer, I hit the road for home. I stayed with my planned route into Indiana. But just barely.

October 20, 2017 (day 3)
Not a minute to spare with a day of informative presentations and an evening of great music inside a gorgeous theater.

October 19, 2017 (day 2)
I got in quite a few miles of new-to-me US-45 before turning to the expressway. I drove some abandoned concrete and found some big dolls in the midst of the fall harvest.

October 18, 2017 (day 1)
On the way to the Route 66 Conference, I traveled a little National Road, had lunch in a classic diner, and saw seven of the largest things in the world.

Prelude - Sep 29, 2017
I attended the first Miles of Possibility Conference back in 2015. This is the third. In the journal postlude for that 2015 trip I noted that it was not yet obvious whether it was a blip or a watershed. The reason for thinking it one or the other was that it was a conference rather than a festival. The Route 66 festivals I was familiar with were sponsored by some organization and free to attend. Vendors were charged a fee to market to those attending and there were optional banquet style meals which cost money but pretty much everything else, which might include some entertainment, was free. Getting people who were used to that sort of event to pay to learn something about a road many felt they were already experts on was not easy. Attendance was modest but sufficient to keep the sessions from feeling empty. On the other hand, the numbers were hardly enough to indicate the wholesale embracing of a new tradition. The fact that its third incarnation is a real thing that is happening in a few weeks makes me think it possible that it was a watershed rather than a blip. We shall see.

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