Jun 172014
 

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Back in 2012 – I headed out to Needles CA to start the restoration of the 66 Motel sign. It wasn’t until August of that year I first saw this little gem called Fender’s River Road Resort, and swore I would be back.

I was in contact with Fender’s manager Rosie a few weeks ago and we started talking about how to get the resort on the Route 66 road map, seeing the building was built around 1958 and has been open for business ever sense.  Fender’s River Road Resort has a mix of ways a traveler can stop off the route and enjoy the river. If you are driving in your car or riding your bike, they have several motel rooms. If you are in your RV and looking for a place to stay for a night or 30, they have an RV park. If you are a little more adventurous, they have a camping area where you can pitch a tent.

I decided to go out there for the weekend as there were several things which I wanted to check out. Getting in late Friday night, we went over to the Riverfront Cafe to have a late dinner. The place was busy and overlooked the Colorado River. My BBQ sandwich was good, the beer was cold. What else can you ask for?!?!

Saturday started with us taking a run over to check out the 66 Motel sign, the old Carty’s Camp Shell Station and taking a walk back by the original Carty’s Camp. We headed back to the resort and started walking around the resort while I was getting caught up on the history of the property. Knowing Route 66 AND the National Old Trails Highway is at the front door, and the Colorado River is at the back door, it’s hard to match a property like this one anywhere on the route. I spent a little time looking at the neon sign to determine what work was needed to bring it back to its original condition.

We ate at the historic Wagon Wheel Restaurant for a few meals and went across the street to Juicy’s Cafe for dinner Saturday night. Fender’s is located in the section away from the town the locals call ‘the suburbs of Needles as it is only a few minutes from the Wagon Wheel. You get the town a few minutes away but are left alone in your own little world.

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The main draw to Fender’s is the river. We sat at the rivers edge with our feet in the water, drinking a few refreshments watching the boats go up and down the river. It was nice to just relax and not care about anything.

We spent Sunday on wave runners running up and down the Colorado River checking out Pirate’s Cove and then heading over to Topok. We then headed north up to Laughlin Nevada. It was great to get back on the water and get some sun and have some fun! The sunburn was well worth it!

My advice is simple: If you are looking to get on the water, plan on spending two days here. Fender’s works with a rental company across the river who can get you wave runners, boats and pontoons. It is nice to know after all of the driving we do to see Route 66, and all the time in the car you can spend a little time on the river before you head out into the desert. They are in the midst of bringing the property to what it once did when it opened in the late 1950′s. Drop them a line and plan your visit! Rosie is a wonderful host and wants to make sure your stay is pleasant.

Check them out via their website by clicking HERE or visit their Facebook page by clicking HERE.

Dec 162013
 

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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 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

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/.