Sep 142014
 

route-66-crusiers









Route 66 Cruisers Car Club is gearing up for its seventh annual car and motorcycle show Sept. 26-27 at Claremore Lake.

After starting in 2006, the club has grown to about 100 members and has gained national attention for its annual shows and charity events.
Ed Meacham established the club. As a car enthusiast, he joined the Tulsa Car Club, but after networking at several shows, he believed enough individuals in Claremore had a love for classic cars and would appreciate a local club. He was right.

The club began with only six founding members, but over the years has grown to a record of 160 members.
Meacham attributes the success to how active the club is in hosting swap meets, shows, cruises, and attending events.
“We get out and do a lot of stuff, and we really want to have money for charity,” said Meacham.
Shortly after starting the club, Meacham felt the club needed a driving purpose. Paul Kelsey, a local Shriner, expressed concern that their organization would fall short on providing toys to children for the upcoming Christmas. The need inspired Meacham to organize the club’s first toy run.
“If it can be done with motorcycles, it can be done with cars,” Meacham said, “We would line up for an all day cruise and start in one town and stop at businesses that collected toys for the Shriners.”
The toy run has been successful every year in helping the Shriners at Christmas, so much so that last year more toys were collected than the Shriners could give away. The additional toys were donated to the Good Samaritan Ministry.

Funds collected from the car shows and events are used to fund the Shriners’ effort to transport children to hospitals. The car club has also sent three veterans on an honor flight to Washington D.C. to visit the war memorials, and gave away a $500 scholarship to a Rogers State University student.
Along with its charitable efforts, the club is all about getting together with good friends and talking about a common love of classic cars, according to Meacham. Tall tales are common in the group, as well as practical jokes, and of course, a lot of laughter.
“Ted [the club president] always gets a trophy at every show — except at one,” said Meacham.
“Yeah, as judges passed my car, Ed yelled, ‘Hey guys, do not be fooling around with that car,’ so the judges moved on without judging it,” Ted Hancock said, laughing.

The group laughs, and Meacham holds strong to his story that he had no idea they were judges. The nature of the group is good fun, stories, and charity.
“We have a lot of fun; we go to fish frys and museums to show our cars. People contact us and ask for a display at a lot of different places,” said Meacham.
Leveraging technology has driven up membership over the years and has gained the club an international spotlight. The car club’s website has caught the attention of film crews from England working on a story about Route 66 and they plan to film the classic cars on a cruise. The website has had over 10 million views from people all over the world and maintains about 10,000 visitors every day.

The car show will include food and arts and crafts vendors, along with live entertainment, and of course, rows and rows of classic cars. There might even be a few “rat rods” competing, which are old cars from the 30s or 40s that have working engines but have been intentionally maintained as a junker.
Club membership is a $15 annual fee, but next year that price will increase to $20. Having a classic car is not a requirement to join the club, and there is plenty of room in other vehicles during cruises for those who lack a classic car. For more information about the Route 66 Cruisers Car Club or the upcoming show, visit www.Route66CruisersOK.org.

By Kristy Sturgill – The Daily Progress

Oct 012012
 





Five men and a vintage tractor named Betsy will today begin a trek along Route 66 in the US in a fundraiser for the Irish Cancer Society.

The group is led by retired sheep farmer Kevin Curran from Waterville, Co Kerry, and includes several farmers. He began fundraising for cancer research in 2010 after his wife Eileen, who had named the tractor, died from cancer.

The group accompanying Betsy, a 1963 Fordson Dexta, will leave Los Angeles today and travel 2,500 miles east to Chicago. Mr Curran estimated it would take 15 days, assuming there were no major setbacks along the way.

Because tractors are not allowed on part of the route, Betsy will travel on a trailer for 15 per cent of the journey.

Betsy’s support team includes Maurice Fitzgerald, Frank Meara, Ogie Moran and Mark Walsh.

Mr Curran’s previous fundraising tractor runs with Betsy included Malin Head to Mizen Head, the Ring of Kerry to Dingle, and Mizen Head to Carnsore Point, but this is the first time they have left Ireland.

The tractor was shipped to the US in July and arrived with little time to spare. The team has been contacted by many Irish people living in the States who have offered support and spare parts, should Betsy flounder on the unfamiliar roads.

Mr Curran said the group had chosen the Irish Cancer Society “as each one of us on the team has been touched by cancer either directly or indirectly and we want the funds raised to go to fund cancer research so that future patients have better outcomes”.

Irish Cancer Society chief executive John McCormack said he was thrilled that the charity had been chosen by the fundraisers.

“Kevin and his team have taken on this fundraiser for the last three years raising significant money for the Irish Cancer Society and to see him take this fundraiser across the Atlantic shows a huge amount of creativity and passion for the cause,” Mr McCormack said.

ALISON HEALY – Irishtimes.com

Sep 112012
 




One of those shows I wish I could have made it to… Oh well, there is always NEXT year!!

Once a year, historic downtown Flagstaff’s narrow streets and redbrick buildings are alight with a unique kind of feeling. With 50s and 60s music blasting on street corners and smells wafting from vendors’ booths, people of various ages and descents crowd the streets and gaze at cars from all eras.

This was the atmosphere of the 8th Annual Route 66 Charity Car Show held this past weekend, organized by the Route 66 Car Club. With craft booths, food vendors and a maximum of 425 cars from the past and the present, there was something for everyone to gaze at. What was so unique about the event was the sense of community among showers, goers and sellers alike.

Route 66 Car Club, a non-profit organization, started in 1985 as club for Chevrolet Corvairs. The club’s interest expanded into other models and eras as the organization grew. Mark Strango, president of the Route 66 Car Club, is one of many who help run the car show. In the past six years, the show has raised about $150,000, $18,000 in the past year, which all went to local charities and the Flagstaff community. The club and show manage to do all this while also bringing business to the town. “[There is] an economic jolt to the economy every time we come up,” Strango said.

In the scope of history, cars and Route 66 have symbolized progress, travel, freedom and community. On the subject, Strango said, “My parents came out of WWII. At that time, you had the big expansion west. In WWII, not everybody owned a car. [Route] 66 was the first main road that went Midwest, starting into Chicago, and ending in Santa Monica, California. That’s how we migrated west. As a kid, I can remember riding in the car on Route 66. It’s the experience…It’s the love of the road; it’s beautiful. I can’t explain it any other way.”

Don Chacon, a Class of 1965 NAU alumnus and an educator for 45 years, was at the show on Saturday as an entrant, showing a classic car he fixed up and remodeled himself. Of the entrants, Chacon said, “You’re not going find a nicer group of people…we’re not here to raise chaos.” Lifting his cap to reveal gray hair, he added, “I mean, look how old we are.”

The car show strives to preserve the spirit of Route 66, small and yet so significant in the grand scheme of history. Strango said, “The main road is fading fast and we need to keep it alive for future generations. I’d like to see more of 66 get back on board – more of the states get together and make it a more continuous route…so people can experience it. [Otherwise,] our kids will never know.”

The show is an interesting, fun way to spend a day. It is a place for young people to learn and for others to relive the past. Walking down the streets, one can hear conversations in different languages, like Japanese and German, all brought together by a common interest in history represented through vehicles. Although a tourist area, Flagstaff is still an intimate community because local organizations, like the Route 66 Car Club, seek to benefit the town.

By Alexis Burnett – Northern Arizona News

Sep 072012
 




Just spoke with Perry Pack – Founder and CEO of the Ayden Rae Foundation and his wife Vanessa (Founder and CEO) for almost 2 hours. They are fighting for a cause and a cure for HG (Hyperemesis Gravidarum). Perry told me Vanessa has been pregnant 11 times – with the only intention to have a few healthy, happy babies.

Ayden Rae was still born 23 weeks and they were done with this disease They were not going to let it beat them, as well as thousands of mothers around the world. They started this campaign to find a cure and get the word out this disease was real – and it effected all of these women.

He wanted to travel Route 66 not only to raise funds for their cause, but also to help the small business along the route.

Perry used to live on Route 66 – and he decided he wanted to use the road to help raise funds. He told me his parents ran a Whiting Bros in Amarillo, his uncle ran a Whiting Bros in Seligman with the help of his parents,  and his uncle had an amblatory business out of Amarillo.  He ended up in Barstow running a Whiting Bros not too far Route 66, and as a young boy, he would help out washing the car windows, cleaning the restrooms, helped fixing flat tires, and doing what he can to support the business. He also managed a Wright & Sullivan Shell Auto Care station on the corner of Foothill & Town from 1983-1989, and he lives in a Route 66 town in CA, so as you can see, he has a long lineage on the route.

He is looking to make this an annual event. Wanting to have an auto tour on the route – he did tell me he knows it would be near impossible to have all these cars do the entire route, but folks can join them for a small stretch, a state, or even a time zone!! The goal is to have 500 participants in 2013. Also, he wants to be able to give prizes from places not only from the route, but from around the country. They are even thinking about a ‘scavenger hunt’ to keep things interesting and have the participants visit the different businesses along the route – in return supporting the business.

The goal for 2012 is to obviously raise money, as they said no amount is too little and any amount helps! The underlining goal is to gain sponserships from individuals and business to donate either a lump sum or even to sponser a group to do a ‘dollar a mile’ drive as well.

It was heartfelt listening to the stories and ironically – I have experienced the same fate (in a sense) when my (ex)wife was pregnant with our fist child – being deathly ill for 9 months, not knowing how the pregnancy would turn out…

What is HG?

During pregnancy, nausea and vomiting is very common in many women. However, frequently many women have to undergo severe sickness in pregnancy and this severe form of morning sickness is called Hyperemesis Gravidarum. Hyperemesis Gravidarum: Is the most severe form of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. Hyperemesis Gravidarum causes malnutrition, electrolyte imbalance and dehydration during pregnancy and is life threatening for mother and unborn child(ren).

You can visit their websites and Facebook page by clicking the following:

Facebook – click HERE

Blog – click HERE

Website – click HERE

Jan 162011
 

The Viva Cuba Beautification Organization invites friends, family, and supporters to buy one of the only 300 tickets being sold to the Route 66 Mural City Party on Saturday, May 14 at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Cuba.
The ticket admits two people to the dinner, dance, and other festivities. The ticket will give one of the 300 purchasers a chance to win $10,000. Event proceeds will help Viva Cuba pay for mural maintenance and other beautification projects.

Last year, the event, under the sponsorship of the Crawford County Foundation, was the Black and Gold Ball that benefited the high school track project. This year, Viva Cuba is hosting the fundraiser, which will follow the basic guidelines of last year’s event.

An added attraction this year is the Chair-i-table Auction of chairs designed and painted by artists. This year, the Chair-i-table Auction will be held at the Route 66 Mural City Party, with partygoers able to view the chairs and bid during the silent auction.

Scott and Jason Holland will MC the event and keep things lively and the music hopping.
Tickets will go on sale at the beginning of March. Partygoers are urged to buy tickets early as they sell out quickly, and there will be a waiting list. Viva Cuba members and the banks will have tickets for sale.

Viva Cuba hopes the community uses this as an opportunity to get together with friends, family, and even old classmates to have a fun night and a 1-in-300 chance to win $10,000. Mark your calendar now for a good time on May 14 at KC Hall.

Click HERE to visit their website.

This event helps with the creation and preservaton of all the beautiful murals throught the town of Cuba that makes this town a favorite amongst Route 66 travelers!

Jan 122011
 

Canstruction is US charity of the design and construction industry created by the Society of Design Administration. It holds annual design and build competitions to construct fantastic, giant sized, structures made entirely out of canned food in different cities in US. In each city after the structures are built and the winners are declared, the creations go on view to the general public as giant art exhibits.

At the end of the competition all of the food used in the structures is donated to the local food banks for distribution to community emergency feeding programs.

Over 2 Million pounds of food was raised in 2010 through these competitions and it was then donated to the local food banks etc.

My daughter’s high school participated in a contest last year. A lot of work, a lot of creative ideas, lot of food donated to charity!

Altough this is really ‘off the track’ from having anything to do with Route 66, I thought it was fun to look at some of the designs.

Click HERE to view 45 different entries.