Mar 222011
 



The project would commemorate the spot where Lincoln Highway and Route 66 once met and would preserve a historically significant house.

Plans for a “Gateway Park” at Illinois 59 and U.S. 30 – once the crossroads of Route 66 and the Lincoln Highway – have been revived by the chairman of the Historic Preservation Commission.

Michael Bortell told the Plainfield Village Board Monday that he plans to apply for a $5,000 matching grant from the National Park Service to fund a redevelopment study for the .925-acre site, which is one of the most historic in the village.

The gas station that once anchored the triangle-shaped property was removed last year by the Illinois Department of Transportation as part of the Illinois 59 widening project, Bortell said. A historically significant house known as the Corbin-Bingham-Worst residence remains, as does another house and two detached garages, he said.

The plan would be to restore the historic house as a visitors center, surrounding it with park land and parking for 10 to 12 cars, he said. The other structures would be demolished, he said.

Village trustees had previously charged the historic commission with exploring the creation of a “gateway” at the intersection, but the project stalled when the property owner – G.C. Real Estate of Lincolnshire – set a selling price that was deemed too steep, Bortell said.

Since then, however, Bortell has persuaded G.C. to not only reconsider that price, but to support his effort to land the federal grant and to contribute $2,500 toward the match money needed. The village would provide the other $2,500. The company has also agreed to tear down the non-historic house and the two garages, Bortell said.

Mayor Michael Collins commended Bortell for “single-handedly revising and revisiting all aspects” of the project, which village officials had considered dormant.

Bortell will know by mid-May if he is successful in landing the grant. The project is of particular appeal to him, he said, because it would not only celebrate the only place in the country where two of the most famous cross-county roads intersect but would preserve the land on which the village’s first industrial business, the Dillman Foundry, was built in 1848.

As for the house, it belonged to one of the first families to settle in Plainfield within the first 20 years of the town’s establishment and was home to Plainfield’s second doctor, Oliver J. Corbin.

Bortell admits that part of his motivation is to keep yet another historic house from being torn down, with nothing built in its place. He said he believes it would be very difficult for the property to be used for a commercial business given its shape and size.

If Bortell is successful in landing the grant, it will fund an appraisal to determine the site’s fair market value and pay architects to develop a concept plan for the land and house. Arris Architects and Designers and Upland Design, both located in Plainfield, have committed to doing the job for 50 percent less than their normal fee, Bortell said.

The study would also require assistance from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency in determining the house’s structural integrity. A committee made up of members of the Historic Preservation Commission, Plainfield Village Board, planning department, Plainfield Historical Society, Village Preservation Association and interested neighbors would be formed to develop the plan, he said.

By Karen Sorensen

Mar 072011
 



Nearly 150 Denmark students stopped in Litchfield Thursday night and Friday morning, with 20 identical Four Winds recreational vehicles parked at the Walmart parking lot.

The back of each RV read, “Goin’ Places with Smiling Faces.” The students are currently attending Aarhus School of Architecture in Denmark, and are traveling Route 66 across the United States as part of a group project.

When they arrived in Litchfield on Thursday night, they had been traveling for three days from Chicago, and their trip will end in Los Angeles after 30 days.

A total of 31 RVs will make the trip along the Mother Road including 142 students and eight teachers.

Students will be taking pictures of farm buildings, grain elevators, signs, cars, trucks and more as part of both group and individual projects.

They will also focus on the hospitality of various stops along the way, and each student will be responsible for a book about his/her experiences when they return home to Denmark.

Following their stop at Walmart, the group camped for the evening in Honey Bend before continuing their trip

Feb 152011
 



Ernie Edwards of Pig Hip Resturant fame is currently in a nursing home and we really believe cards and notes would help cheer him up.



You can address them to:
Ernest Edwards
c/o St.Clara’s Manor
Room 217
200 Fifth Street
Lincoln, IL 62656

Thank You on behalf of his family.
Another Thank You to the Route 66 Association of Illinois for bringing this idea to light!!

Feb 082011
 



Pontiac, Ill. — The design for a new mural in downtown Pontiac was approved by the City Council at its meeting Monday night.

The mural, which will be located on the west side of the Encore Shoppe building, was originally scheduled to be designed by the renowned Route 66 artist Bob Waldmire. However, Waldmire died in late 2009 before he could complete the mural. The mural just approved will now honor Waldmire and incorporate his likeness and his work into the overall design.

The mural will be finished and dedicated during the the annual Red Carpet Corridor celebration on Mother’s Day weekend, May 6-8 2011.

Ellie Alexander of the city’s Tourism Bureau asked the council’s persmission to commission a mural depicting the last art work of Waldmire. Waldmire’s family donated his two vehicles, a bus which is located behind the Route 66 museum, and a Volkswagen van, located inside the museum.

The 66-foot-long mural will be made up of 16 panels, most 8-feet-high, except the three last panels to the south, which will be several feet higher.

Diaz Sign Art was given $15,000 to complete the project. Like the WallDog murals of 2009, Pontiac residents and area artists will be invited to paint some of the mural as well.

Copyright 2011 Pontiac Daily Leader.

Feb 012011
 

It is all about family fun on the most famous road in America – Route 66. This year’s Red Carpet Corridor Festival will take place on Saturday, May 7, from 8 AM to 5 PM, and Sunday, May 8, from 8 AM to 3 PM. Sponsored by the twelve communities which make up the 90-mile linear museum from Joliet to Towanda, the annual festival invites everyone to experience the good life in the slow lane.

Each community will produce its own events. From full-blown festivals to antique and craft sales, art sales, car and motorcycle shows, live entertainments, and plenty of yard, garage, and sidewalk sales along the way, everyone is sure to discover something unique. New this year is the Red Carpet Corridor Passport. Inside the passport are listings with information about each individual town’s weekend events. Travelers can pick up their passport at their first stop and then have their passport stamped in each of the towns they visit.

Food, snacks and treats will be in abundance, and there are plenty of historic sites, outstanding free museums and unique mom & pop businesses to help create a nostalgic journey for all to enjoy. Visitors can simply enjoy the drive, or stop and get out of the car to paint a mural, have their picture taken with Elvis, or do a little shopping in any of the great stores along the Mother Road.

For more information, visit the website at www.il66redcarpetcorridor.org
Or contact Ellie Alexander: (815) 944-5847 or email: tourism@pontiac.org.

Jan 312011
 

Pontiac IL will dedicate its Red Carpet Corridor Festival to the memory of a Route 66 icon, the late Bob Waldmire.

The festival, Saturday, May 7, and Sunday, May 8, will include the painting of a mural designed by Waldmire, tours of the Waldmire school bus mobile home, a fine arts show and sale on the Livingston County Courthouse Square and a display of some of the classic cars that will be included in the new Pontiac-Oakland Automobile Museum and Resource Center.

Waldmire was born near Springfield in 1945 and died in December 2009. His passion for Route 66 began in 1962 when his parents took the entire family on a motoring trip to California via Route 66.

He later spent the rest of his life traveling along Route 66 in either his school bus mobile home or 1972 Volkswagen van. Both the van and the school bus are on display in Pontiac at the Route 66 Association of Illinois Hall of Fame and Museum in downtown Pontiac. During the Red Carpet Festival, the Waldmire school bus home will be opened to the public for the first time.

Waldmire supported his nomadic and eclectic lifestyle by painting and drawing for clients along Route 66, the “Mother Road.” His artwork is famous worldwide and Pontiac has one of his Route 66 road maps painted inside the Route 66 Museum.

During this year’s festival, Waldmire’s last commissioned mural project will be painted. He was asked to design and paint a mural for downtown Pontiac, but his illness prevented him from completing that task. Instead, he designed the mural and the public will be invited to come downtown during the festival to help paint the 66-foot map of the entirety of Route 66. The Diaz family, owners of Diaz Sign Art, will oversee the project.

In keeping with the festival’s theme of art and the Mother Road, the Livingston County Courthouse Square will be the scene of an art show and sale. Artists from around the Midwest, including some Walldogs, will display and sell original art.

For more information, contact Ellie Alexander, director of Pontiac Tourism, at 815-844-5847.

Jan 252011
 



LINCOLN — 2011 looks to be another exciting year for Route 66 in Logan County. The Route 66 Heritage Foundation of Logan County is busy, along with the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County, in promoting Route 66 in grand style statewide.

The foundation hustled to finish up a National Park Service grant in 2010 that helped fund some major repairs at The Mill. Foundation repairs, windows and electrical service, along with a newly refurbished floor, was just some of the work done to help move The Mill one step closer to opening as a museum in 2011.

Local help, teamed up with many members of the Route 66 Association of Illinois, worked hard to meet the grant deadlines. The group continues to deal with the challenge of funding issues, but makes up for it with diligence and hard work aimed at seeing the Route 66 icon opened up as a museum that will house Route 66 history in Logan County. This extensive amount of work could not have occurred without also a generous grant from The Danner Trust and an extremely generous donation from local philanthropist Larry Van Bibber.

To continue its mission of restoring The Mill, the foundation once again will hold the Annual Route 66 Garage Sale. Without project manager Bruce Huskins, who stepped down after 2010’s event, the future of the sale was unknown. With careful consideration, Geoff Ladd, executive director of the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County, stepped up to manage the event that now is booked for May 13 and 14 with some changes in store. All proceeds from this countywide event will go toward The Mill restoration project.

Additionally, the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau is pleased to announce the return of the Route 66 Association of Illinois Hall of Fame banquet on June 11, to be hosted at Lincoln College in the new Lincoln Center. This several-hundred member statewide organization will be celebrating Route 66 with a special tribute to the late famed Route 66 artist Bob Waldmire, as well as enjoying Lincoln and Logan County, a great location that includes a vast amount of Route 66 history along a 37-mile stretch of the Mother Road.

The Route 66 Heritage Foundation of Logan County was formed with the intention of bringing together community members who are passionate about Route 66 and its history in Logan County. It is a group that always is accepting new members and volunteers.

For details on these events or for information on how to get involved, call 217-732-8687.

Copyright 2011 Lincoln Courier. Some rights reserved

Jan 212011
 

Story from the Lincoln Daily News – wish I could attend this one!

This looks to be another exciting year for Logan County and Route 66. The Route 66 Heritage Foundation of Logan County is busy, along with the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County, in promoting Route 66 in grand style statewide.

The tourism bureau announces that the Route 66 Association of Illinois Hall of Fame banquet will return to Lincoln on June 11. The event will be hosted at Lincoln College in their new Lincoln Center. This several-hundred-member statewide organization will celebrate Route 66 with a special tribute to the late famed Route 66 artist Bob Waldmire, as well as enjoying Lincoln and Logan County, which includes a vast amount of Route 66 history along a 37-mile stretch of the Mother Road.

As previously announced, the Route 66 Heritage Foundation of Logan County has decided to once again host the annual Route 66 Garage Sale. Without project manager Bruce Huskins, who had stepped down after the 2010 event, the future of the sale was unknown. But after careful consideration Geoff Ladd stepped up to manage the project that is now booked for May 13 and 14 with some changes in store. All proceeds from this countywide event go toward the restoration of The Mill.

The Route 66 Heritage Foundation hustled to finish up a National Park Service grant in 2010 that helped fund some major repairs at The Mill. Windows, electrical service and foundation repairs, along with a newly refurbished floor, were just some of the work done to help move The Mill one step closer to opening as a museum this year. Local help, teamed up with many members of the Route 66 Association of Illinois, were hard at work to meet the grant deadlines. The group continues to deal with the challenge of funding issues but makes up for it with diligence and hard work aimed at seeing the Route 66 icon opened up as a museum that will house Route 66 history in Logan County.

This extensive amount of work could not have occurred without also a generous grant from The Danner Trust and an extremely generous donation from local philanthropist Larry Van Bibber.

Jan 162011
 

Date
Saturday, June 11, 2011 @ 8:00 AM

Address
Edwardsville City Park & Library
112 S Kansas St




Registration Closing Date
Thursday, June 09, 2011 @ 11:59 PM

Brief Description
Come join us for the 5th Annual Route 66 10K run / walk on Saturday, June 1th, 2011. This event will be once again part of Route 66 Festival hosted by the City of Edwardsville. The Route 66 10K is hosted by the Metro Milers Running / Walking Club.

The Mother Road 10K course
The Route 66 10K starts in downtown Edwardsville and travels through Edwardsville’s neighborhoods for the first 2 miles then cruises on the beautiful MCT bike trails for 3.5 miles. Then travels back to the Edwardsville City Park to finish where runners and walkers celebrate at the post-race festival. USATF course certification pending.

Awards
Large Custom Route 66 Road Sign awards! Top 3 Overall Male & Female Champions and Master Male & Female Champions. 3 Route 66 medals to Top 3 in following age groups for both men and women – 14 & under, 15-19 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70+.

RCAA IL State 10K Championship
The 2011 Route 66 10K play host to the Road Runners Club of America Illinois State 10K Championship. All US citizens are eligible.

Race Packet Pickup
Early Packet Pickup – Friday, June 10th from 10am to 8pm. Race Day – Stage area from 6:30am to 7:45am.

Wednesday Night Training Runs
Join us every Wednesday evening for our training runs starting April 6th. We meet at the Edwardsville Library parking lot at 6:30pm and run the Rt 66 10K course. Post run water provided by the Metro Milers.

Cancellation
Entry fees are non-refundable. Once we receive and accept your entry, you will not receive a refund if you cannot participate. You may transfer your entry to someone else. Contact race management for more details.

Additional Information
The 2011 Route 66 10K is playing host to the Road Runners Club of America Illinois State 10K Championships. USATF certification pending.

More Information
Click HERE to view the event organizer’s website

Jan 142011
 

Back in Aug/Sept 2010 – we went to work on the beginning of the restoration of both The Mill in Lincoln, IL and the Riviera (Gardner) Streetcar after it was moved from the back of the Riviera – but before it found its new home next to the jailcell in Gardner.




Click picture to see full article. (I am the one with the arrow next to him…)
As you can see from the pictues, we work hard, we play hard, we eat A LOT!!

The Route 66 Association of Illinois’ motto is: ‘We work for food’ and I have YET had a bad meal while volunteering!!

A great group of folks who will tell tales, stories and give useful information about the route as you work next to them – side by side.

I do mean it when I say these folks put their heart and soul preserving Route 66.

I encourage all state associations to get the word out about volunteering efforts and I encourage all who love the route as I do – VOLUNTEER! It is an experience you will have with you for a lifetime!

Nothing like stopping at a building you helped restore and say ‘yep – I did that!’

Yes – you are allowed to pat yourself on the back…