Mar 202014
 









Runners, joggers, walkers, and strollers will all hit the pavement for the Sixth Annual “Race to the Rocker” at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 22 in Cuba. The four-mile, straight-shot run starts at the Mizell Funeral Home at 904 W. Washington and heads out to the unique 42-foot-tall steel rocking chair that sits next to historic Route 66 at the Fanning 66 Outpost.

Anyone and everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate or attend this event, sponsored by JOG, Inc. (Joggers of God, In Cuba). The race from historic uptown Cuba to the site of the World’s Largest Rocking Chair in Fanning is one that has steadily grown in popularity for a variety of reasons, with both new and old participants taking part each year. Proceeds from the event go to support local charities each year.

But it’s not only the running and the gifts to charities that make this a special event in Crawford County. As the race has continued to grow, organizers have heard stories about how deeply it has affected some of the individual participants. So, this year, they sent out a call for personal accounts of what the “Race to the Rocker” has meant to them.
These inspirational stories of personal triumph, dogged determination, and life-changing decisions have been shared as the race approaches. These stories are written by the participants, so readers can hear, in their own words, the impact of this event on their lives. Organizers hope that this year’s event will inspire new stories for the future.
Registration information and additional details about the event are available on the organization’s website at www.jog-inc.com.

Don and Lesa Mizell: Proud to Be the Starting Line
Mizell Funeral Home has been the meeting, registration, and beginning place of the Race to the Rocker for the last five years, and it will be again this year.
Having the opportunity to watch the amount of people growe each year has been amazing. “Not even sleet keeps them away.”
The first year, getting everyone a chance to the restroom was hectic, but with the Cuba United Methodist Church’s help and portable potties delivered, that issue was solved.

Parking was the second hurdle that had to be addressed, for there isn’t a big enough parking lot to park everyone. But with the buses picking most of the runners up at the Cuba High School, that issue was solved.
The committee that works year round on the Race to the Rocker does a great job making sure everyone is taken care of and any issues this year are resolved by the next year.
To be the place that everyone starts arriving at on a Saturday morning in March, before the sun rises, is just a great opportunity to give back to the community. We feel proud to be the starting point for the Race to the Rocker.

Dan Sanazaro: The Man with the Finish Line
In the fall of 2008, Brad Austin of JOG, Inc. approached me about a race that would finish at the rocker. I said, “Sounds great. Let’s do it.” That was the birth of the “Race to the Rocker” as far as Fanning 66 Outpost was concerned.
I thought to myself that it was really nice of him to end this race at our store. Then he told me what our portion of the donation would be. That’s when I figured out it was a community event that would help make lots of things happen for different programs.

We are glad to be a part of this great event as a sponsor and finish line. The rocker is owned by Fanning 66 Outpost, but it belongs to Route 66 and the community. I don’t know if it will always be the largest in the world, but it will always be the Route 66 Rocker.
It’s been fun to watch the race over the years—all the different people, costumes and teams. My favorite so far was the firemen running in full gear. That was impressive! It’s inspiring to see the people who finish the race that maybe all along the way had to keep telling themselves they could make it. I see a lot of people who have done it every year, but there are also new faces.
JOG, Inc. is a great group to work with. They set this race up and break it down fast. By one in the afternoon, you can’t even tell they were here. Brad Austin leads his group well, but one little known fact about Brad is that he cannot back up a trailer. It’s kind of funny to watch him. In fact, the whole Friday set up and Saturday race is fun to watch.

In the summer of 2015, the rocker is going to get a new paint job, and we are considering a contest of some kind of who can come up with the new look. So, while you’re here at the outpost this year, run some ideas in your head and look for the contest to begin early in 2015.

By Amy England – Cuba News

Dec 162013
 

missouri-hick-bbq








Missouri Hick BBQ

I kept driving by this place for the past few years wanting to stop in – but never had the chance.
Then earlier this year, I decided to bite the bullet (or the beef rib!) and stop in – and I am glad I did!!

I love BBQ and will eat it any chance I can get. The three times I have been there this year (actually 3 times in 4 months) I always have the ribs – and they are just that good!

The food is great – the service is almost too quick! As soon as you order, the food is pretty much ready.
Twice I ate on the patio and once inside the diner area – and all three times it was busy.
A nice added bonus – the Wagon Wheel Motel is right next door! So I decided to stay at the Wagon Wheel AND walk next door to grab a beer and, of course, more BBQ!

Another bonus is it is in Cuba MO and while there – make sure you check out the great murals they have throughout town.

I would recommend this place to ANY Route 66 traveler, so time it so you can stop in for lunch or dinner.

You can check out their website by going to www.missourihick.com

Aug 252012
 




St. Clair and other chambers of commerce along Interstate 44 from Eureka to Rolla are preparing for the ninth annual Route 66 Treasure Hunt set for Labor Day weekend.

This year’s event is scheduled for Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 30-Sept. 1, in each city along the route.

The treasure hunt was the brainchild of the St. Clair Area Chamber of Commerce and its executive director at the time, Terry Triphahn, in 2004. The idea behind it is to promote the historic Route 66 and the regional cities that dot the map by serving as hosts to a giant rummage sale. The distance between Eureka and Rolla is about 70 miles.

“This year’s event is going to be great,” current St. Clair Chamber Executive Director Angela Crawford said. “Vendors will have an awesome opportunity to sell their wares and make some extra cash, and shoppers will surely find some great treasures.”

In 2012, Eureka, Pacific, Sullivan, Cuba, St. James and Rolla are participating as well as St. Clair.

Travelers and others are invited to stop in each city during the three-day period to see what kind of bargains will be sold in garage-sale style. In St. Clair, vendors can set up shop at several locations, including Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Dace Excavating, the Old Country Fresh Market, the St. Clair Building Center and the Gratzer Construction Building. Individuals also may set up an outside booth at their personal residence or business.

“Don’t miss out,” Crawford said.

In St. Clair, Route 66 is Commercial Avenue.

During Monday’s St. Clair Board of Aldermen meeting, city officials unanimously voted to allow merchant sidewalk sales during the event. City Administrator Rick Childers said the motion was required under city ordinance.

Maps and other information are available on the St. Clair Area Chamber of Commerce website by clicking HERE. For more information, contact the Chamber at 636-629-6000, extension 3.

By Keith E. Domke, St. Clair Missourian Editor The Missourian

Aug 222012
 





A Route 66 photo contest at this year’s Cuba Fest could land kids some cold, hard cash.

The photo competition, sponsored by the Viva Cuba organization, has cash prizes for first, second, and third places in two separate categories. The awards will be $75, $50, and $25, respectively.

The contest is open to young photographers living in the Crawford County (Cuba) R-2 School District. Category 1 is for kids ages 9-13 and Category 2 is open to older kids in the 14-18 age range. Three local judges will choose the winners at Cuba Fest, to be held October 20-21 on Smith Street in the Historic Business District.

According to the rules of the “Picture This on Route 66” contest, photographs must be taken along Route 66 in the area in or around Cuba. Photos may be taken anywhere on Route 66 from Skippy’s Restaurant in Leasburg to the Route 66 Outpost in Fanning.

Photographers are to use standard 4H guidelines for mounting: Use a single photo print no smaller than 4×6 inches and no larger than 8×10 inches mounted on an 8×10 white poster board or matte board. Alternatively, students can create a photo story or collage with no more than four photos mounted to a single 8×10 matte board.

Only one official entry may be submitted per contestant.

Photos are not to be altered in any way to change their contents through Photoshop or other photo manipulation programs. Special filters or High Definition Range photo treatments are prohibited. The idea is to put emphasis on the quality of the photo composition, printing, and subject matter, not digital manipulation or gimmicks.

Submissions may be either in color or black and white. Permitted enhancements include cropping, sharpening, adjusting brightness and contrast levels, and making red eye corrections.

Entries will be on display at Cuba Fest and must be turned in by October 1 at the Highway 19 branch of Peoples Bank. For more information, contact Judy Workman at 573-885-2775.

Deadline for entries is October 1

Written by Chris Case – Three Rivers Publishing

Jan 242012
 



Rolla, Mo. — CUBA — Race director Brad Austin promises the Route 66 Race to the Rocker on March 31 will be bigger and better this year.

This is the fourth year for the 4-mile race that starts at the Mizell Funeral Home and continues on Route 66 to the Outpost US 66 General Store’s Guinness Book of World Records Largest Rocking Chair.

The Cuba 4-H groups will be offering a spaghetti dinner fundraiser from 5-8 p.m. March 30 at the Business and Fitness Expo so runners can get their carbs in before the big race the next day.

The race begins at 9 a.m., rain or shine. Participants can pick up race packets and t-shirts at the Business and Fitness Expo or the day of the race. Participants are asked to bring a canned food item for the food bank or personal hygiene items for the Friday Backpack for Kids program.

On race day, the Cuba High School parking lot will be available for parking before the race, with shuttle buses taking runners to the race registration area starting at 7:30 a.m. More buses will be available this year for both pre- and post-race shuttles. Bag drops are available at the beginning of the race with pickup at the rocker finish area.

This year there are plans for music and other events along the course to inspire runners. As well as an orange Race to the Rocker t-shirt, runners will all receive Cuba’s signature treat of two baby cakes from the Route 66 Fudge Shop, and Route 66 Race to the Rocker candy bars will go to the race division winners.

Big River Running from St. Louis will provide race numbers with chip timing and will post times and results online. Both lanes of Route 66 will be closed from Kinder Cemetery to the rocker from 8:45-11 a.m. The Missouri Highway Patrol as well as local fire, EMT, and police officials will help with the course management.

Almost $35,000 for kids’ fitness/health projects was raised over the last three years. This year’s funds will go to the Friday Backpacks for Kids Program, two scholarships for track and cross country students, to purchase or rehabilitation of weight room equipment, and for ongoing investigation of the Rails to Trails program.

Jessica Harrison of Captured by Jessica will be available to take individual and team photos with the Rocker in the background. Race director Brad Austin said, “We are signing up volunteers and sponsors to make it all happen and run smoothly. This race is a community event and effort, and Cuba’s wonderful support has allowed the race to grow each year and raise so much for our kids and their health and fitness.”

Race organizers have set a goal of 1,000 run/walkers to make it the largest race to date. The race is open to all ability levels and age groups.

Faster runners will be placed in the front of the pack to insure the safety of all. Feel free to costume up to make it a colorful race. Bring your cameras and spend some time in the “Route 66 Mural City” after the race.

The Rolla Daily News

Dec 162011
 



The ‘birthday’ of the historic Wagon Wheel Motel…


It’s one thing for a motel to celebrate a birthday – but it is another thing to go under remodeling, welcome more guests, AND have been continuously open since 1936!

Anyone who knows anything on the route knows: When you are in Missouri – you must stay at the Wagon Wheel Motel! This truly is a gem along the route and the one thing I love about this place… they are ‘networking’ with other motels along the route to make sure you have the best possible stay where ever you lay your head down for the night while driving Route 66!

Below is the article I posted about the 75th Anniversary of the Wagon Wheel Motel:

With rooms rented to Route 66ers for the1930’s price of $3.50 a night and 30’s food prices, the Historic Landmark Wagon Wheel Motel in Cuba, Missouri is celebrating its 75th Anniversary on August 20-21 in style. As the oldest motel on Route 66, the Wagon Wheel Café building, gas station, and motel earned its placement on the National Register of Historic Places.

Connie Echols, who bought the old motel in 2009, finished a “hands-on” restoration this spring by redoing all the rooms, adding two decks, and a bike shelter/pavilion. Each room has an authentic feel of a Route 66 motel but with updates of WiFi and flat screen TVs.

Now Echols is ready to celebrate the history of the Wagon Wheel with an Open House and Celebration with a 1930s Bonnie and Clyde theme. Car Clubs have been invited to bring cars of the era to the two-day event that begins with lunch on Saturday, August 20. Vintage dress is encouraged if you would like to get with the spirit of the event.

During the two-day Open House Celebration there will be room tours, games, food, music, book signings by Route 66 enthusiast Joe Sonderman and Wagon Wheel historian Riva Echols, and an explanation of the Route 66 GPS program by its creator River Pilot. Employees of the Wagon Wheel and families associated with the Wagon Wheel are invited to meet and reminisce on Sunday afternoon. There may be a few other surprises in store for attendees.

“It’s been a long journey getting the Wagon Wheel Motel and Connie’s Shoppe to this point,” stated Echols. “Now it’s time to share the results with friends, family, and the Route 66 community. I’m anxious to show off all the progress that we have made and to have a good time.”

Events & Times:
Saturday: 1-3 pm Room Tours
Saturday: 2-6 pm Wine tasting
Saturday: All day Croquet /Horseshoes
Saturday evening: Chipping contest
Saturday: 8pm Band

River Pilot, the creator of the Route 66 GPS program is available all weekend to explain his GPS system

Sunday: 11:00 am Joe Sonderman, Route 66 author book signing
Sunday: 1-3 pm Room Tours
Sunday: 1:00 pm Riva Echols: The Wagon Wheel Motel on Route 66 History book signing

Riva will also host a social gathering for employees, families connected to the Wagon Wheel history, and anyone else who might be interested in Wagon Wheel history

Sunday: 2-4 pm Wine tasting
Sunday: 2:00 pm Croquet Tournament

Visit the Wagon Wheel Motel’s 75th anniversary celebration on Saturday or Sunday. Bring your cameras to record another historic event at this Historic Landmark on Route 66.

You can visit their website by clicking HERE, or join them on Facebook by clicking HERE.

Aug 072011
 



With rooms rented to Route 66ers for the1930’s price of $3.50 a night and 30’s food prices, the Historic Landmark Wagon Wheel Motel in Cuba, Missouri is celebrating its 75th Anniversary on August 20-21 in style. As the oldest motel on Route 66, the Wagon Wheel Café building, gas station, and motel earned its placement on the National Register of Historic Places.

Connie Echols, who bought the old motel in 2009, finished a “hands-on” restoration this spring by redoing all the rooms, adding two decks, and a bike shelter/pavilion. Each room has an authentic feel of a Route 66 motel but with updates of WiFi and flat screen TVs. Rooms are of various sizes and amenities with details on the Wagon Wheel website (www.wagonwheel66cuba.com).

Now Echols is ready to celebrate the history of the Wagon Wheel with an Open House and Celebration with a 1930s Bonnie and Clyde theme. Car Clubs have been invited to bring cars of the era to the two-day event that begins with lunch on Saturday, August 20. Vintage dress is encouraged if you would like to get with the spirit of the event.

During the two-day Open House Celebration there will be room tours, games, food, music, book signings by Route 66 enthusiast Joe Sonderman and Wagon Wheel historian Riva Echols, and an explanation of the Route 66 GPS program by its creator River Pilot. Employees of the Wagon Wheel and families associated with the Wagon Wheel are invited to meet and reminisce on Sunday afternoon. There may be a few other surprises in store for attendees.

“It’s been a long journey getting the Wagon Wheel Motel and Connie’s Shoppe to this point,” stated Echols. “Now it’s time to share the results with friends, family, and the Route 66 community. I’m anxious to show off all the progress that we have made and to have a good time.”

Events & Times:
Saturday: 1-3 pm Room Tours
Saturday: 2-6 pm Wine tasting
Saturday: All day Croquet /Horseshoes
Saturday evening: Chipping contest
Saturday: 8pm Band

River Pilot, the creator of the Route 66 GPS program is available all weekend to explain his GPS system

Sunday: 11:00 am Joe Sonderman, Route 66 author book signing
Sunday: 1-3 pm Room Tours
Sunday: 1:00 pm Riva Echols: The Wagon Wheel Motel on Route 66 History book signing

Riva will also host a social gathering for employees, families connected to the Wagon Wheel history, and anyone else who might be interested in Wagon Wheel history

Sunday: 2-4 pm Wine tasting
Sunday: 2:00 pm Croquet Tournament

Visit the Wagon Wheel Motel’s 75th anniversary celebration on Saturday or Sunday. Bring your cameras to record another historic event at this Historic Landmark on Route 66.

BY writeronthego – stltoday.com

May 102011
 



People usually don’t think of Route 66 in conjunction with the Civil War, but as the U.S. commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, Cuba, Missouri, known as the “Route 66 Mural City” can boast a Civil War attraction.

As part of its outdoor mural project, Viva Cuba, a community betterment organization, commissioned 12 outdoor murals along the Route 66 corridor. One of these is actually a series of Civil War scenes of the Battle of Pilot Knob a Missouri battle that began when Confederate General Sterling Price attacked Fort Davidson, under the charge of Union General Thomas Ewing.

When the clever Union soldiers snuck out of the Fort under cover of darkness rather than surrender, the chase was on. After blowing up the fort so that ammunition and supplies that were left behind would not fall into Confederate hands, Union troops fled cross-country.

The Confederates chased the Union soldiers across the Huzzah River near Steelville, to Leasburg, where the Union soldiers planned on escaping by train. However, Confederate troops burned train tracks in the nearby towns of Bourbon and Cuba, thus trapping the soldiers in Leasburg. With Confederate troops bearing down on them, the Union soldiers once more thought that the end was near. Leasburg and Bourbon are also Route 66 towns that have played their roles in the Civil War.

Then Union troops from Rolla arrived to save the day, and the troops were able to get to Rolla and safety. It is said that the grateful troops danced and sang, “Rally round the Flag Boys” when the rescuing troops arrived.

It is the Battle of Pilot Knob and the following events that the Viva Cuba organization hired Oregon artist Don Gray to depict in its series of Civil War murals on Buchanan Street, just off Route 66 in Cuba.

The striking murals are a great attraction for Route 66 travelers to visit during the 2011 Sesquicentennial Anniversary of America’s Civil War. The Crawford County Historical Society Museum in Cuba is located on N. Smith Street off Route 66 to provide more information on the Civil War and Route 66.

So, this summer you can get your history, and your kicks, on Route 66.

Written by Jane Reed, media coordinator for theViva Cuba Mural Project.

Mar 242011
 



Bette Davis, Harry Truman, and Amelia Earhart visited Cuba Missouri, why don’t you?



Attractions and Activities to enjoy while visiting Cuba, Missouri…

1. 12 Outdoor Murals along the Route 66 corridor through Historic Uptown Cuba tell the story of Cuba’s history from 1857 when it was founded.
Get a mural brochure at the Visitor Center at Exit 208 on I-44 or in area restaurants and businesses.

2. Spend some time at the History Museum/Veterans Memorial/Public Library at Recklein Commons on Smith Street two blocks off Route 66.

3. Visit Antique Malls/Resale Shops

4. Enjoy Specialty Shops such as Three Mile Creek, home of Missouri’s Largest Bed Frame and custom lodge/western furniture.

5. Cruise Historic Route 66 through Cuba.
Visit the Historic Landmark Wagon Wheel Motel & Connie’s Shoppe for photos of the oldest motel on Route 66.
See the 1931 Phillips 66 Station at the intersection of Hwy. 19 and Route 66.

6. Spend some time at the Crawford County Fair in July. George Jones will be performing in 2011.
Located at Hood Park, just off Route 66. Hood Park is also a location for walking and biking.

7. Take a photo at the Guinness World Record Largest Rocking Chair, “A Route 66 Wonder” on the site of Fanning Outpost US 66 General Store and Archery 4-Plex Center with indoor and outdoor ranges, including one 3D range.

8. The Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center located at Exit 208 on I-44 offers coffee, water, clean rest rooms, friendly staff, and a lot of information. Pick up the latest Viva Cuba t-shirt while you are there.
Information on local businesses, events, and activities is available. You can find information on area church services at the Visitor Center.
In October, 2011 there will be a Civil War Reenactment at nearby Leasburg.

9. Eat at one of Cuba’s independently owned restaurants. MO Hick and Frisco’s are only two. See the complete list on the Chamber of Commerce website.

10. Parks, a swimming pool, and bike trails are available.

11. Cuba Fest the 3rd Weekend in October is small town Missouri at its best. Free narrated Trolley Tours of the Murals are available as well as a Sunday Cemetery Tours at Kinder Cemetery.

12. In season the Drive-In Theatre near the Visitor Center on Hwy. 19 offers a glimpse of days past with first run movies.

13. The Cuba Lakes Golf Course offers a two lake course that can be a challenge.

14. An 1873 Train Replica and Painted Traffic Control Boxes in the Viva Cuba Garden provides a relaxing stop while walking the mural route.

15. Floating, camping, outdoor sports at nearby Ozark area rivers are enjoyed by many visitors each year.

16. There are Industrial Enterprise Parks to Grow Your Business if you are thinking of relocating to a convenient Midwest location with a lot to offer.

17. Pick up a brochure at the Visitor Center at the I-44 Overpass for more information on some of Cuba’s historical buildings.

18. See Other public art throughout Cuba. Area business have added their own murals both inside and outside of their businesses.

19. Hayes Shoe Store on Route 66 (Smith and Washington) has two Robert Wadlow Shoes on display. Robert Wadlow was known as the “Giant of Alton.” The store is also the site of the Prosperity Corner Mural.

20. Visit the September Lions Club Car Show in the historic district. Visit the area murals at the same time.

If that isn’t enough, you can visit nearby Steelville for the Meramec Music Theatre shows or see a concert at the historic Wildwood Lodge like you’ve never seen one before. Or you can visit one of the Cuba Livestock Sales to experience a little bit of agriculture in Mid-Missouri.

You can click HERE to go to the Cuba MO Murals website to see pictures and get more information,

Jan 172011
 

FROM A PLAN to relight a towering theater sign and restore a nearby rare neon and opal design in Highland Park, California, to a project to repair and upgrade an iconic motel in Cuba, Missouri, the National Park Service, Route 66
Corridor Preservation Program
announces its 2010 annual cost-share grant awards. As in previous years, the number of cost-share grant requests exceeded available funding. The five new projects receiving grants are described in brief below. A full description of current and previous awards is available at www.cr.nps.gov/rt66.

The Historic Seligman Sundries, Seligman, Arizona
A cost-share grant will help pay for a new asphalt shingle roof, replicating how the building appeared during its Route 66 heyday.

Relighting the Historic Signs of Figueroa Street, Highland Park, California
This project will relight the Highland Theatre sign and restore to operating condition the former Manning’s Coffee Store sign down the street.

Munger Moss Motel, Lebanon, Missouri
A cost-share grant will assist the restoration of the Munger Moss’s landmark neon sign and a smaller “office” sign.

Wagon Wheel Motel, Cuba, Missouri
This project will purchase a HVAC system, install new storm windows, and repair rotted eaves and porch members.

Bristow Firestone Station, Bristow, Oklahoma
A cost-share grant will assist the full restoration and renovation of a former Firestone filling station for new use as a body
repair shop.

FOLLOWING THE SUCCESS of the first 50, the National Park Service’s Heritage Education Service added 50 more properties to the Discover Our Shared Heritage Travel Itinerary for Route 66. The new entries include Meramec River Bridge, Red Cedar Inn, Palms Grill Café, Old Trails Bridge and others. The itinerary was produced by the NPS in partnership with the American Express and World Monuments Fund Sustainable Tourism Initiative and the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers. Take your trip down Route 66 here: http://www.nps.gov/history/nr/travel/route66/.