Saturday, August 9, 2008

Day 34 Summer Vacation 2008

Today is Day 34 Saturday August 9 2008

Today will be our last full day on Historic Route 66. We are going to end the trip in Joliet Illinois. I really have no desire to continue on into Chicago, I think the traffic and finding our way around is just going to be too much of a hassle to be enjoyable.

Lincoln to Joliet

We woke up, had breakfast and then headed out. Since we are in Lincoln Illinois, we went in search of Abraham Lincoln. We found him sitting on top of an old covered wagon reading his book.

2 Rte 66 Abe Lincoln on Wagon Lincoln IL

We left Lincoln IL and continued along Route 66 and through the town of Atlanta IL. Atlanta has a very colourful water tower.

7 Rte 66 Atlanta IL

We also found another one of the Giants in Atlanta.

9 Rte 66 Atlanta IL

Then it was on to The Dixie Truck Stop in McLean Illinois. We had read in all of the books that this was the first truck stop on the old highway and that there was a nice display of Route 66 memorabilia inside. We bought fuel and then went inside to take a look around. There was nothing Route 66 about this place, apparently new owners had just taken over and have had everything removed. I regret buying gas here and I would suggest to any Route 66 travellers, that unless things change and the owners see the error of their ways, do not bother stopping here.

15 Rte 66 Dixie Truck Stop McLean IL

Next stop is in Funk’s Grove Illinois so that we can stop and check out Funk’s Grove Pure Maple Sirup. No I did not spell this wrong despite what my spell checker is telling me. Sirup is how they spell it. There is a nice little gift shop and you can buy anything maple here as well as souvenirs from the road.

17 Rte 66 Funks Grove IL

We stopped at The Log Cabin Restaurant for lunch and then headed on to the Route 66 Museum in Pontiac Illinois. There is a great selection of enlarged photos on display in the museum. It was great fun to look at the photos and say “we were there” or “we saw that”

There was a nice mural painted on the outside of the building.

21 Rte 66 Pontiac IL

Between Pontiac and Odell Illinois we found some long abandoned pieces of Route 66.

28 Rte 66 btwn Pontiac & Odell IL

In Odell IL we stopped at the Standard Oil Station for a look around and to take some photos.

31 Rte 66 Standard Oil Station Odell IL

We met another couple here who were also taking photos. They were just beginning their Route 66 road trip. We told them about the highlights of our trip and what we had seen and done and what they had to look forward too. We were ending our trip today and they were just starting. Almost made me want to turn around and do it all again.

Next stop was the Village of Dwight Illinois. There are several photo opportunities in this little village.

38  Rte 66 Dwight IL

We stopped at the restored Ambler – Becker Texaco Station and chatted with the volunteers who were working on restoring this old gas station. Built in 1933, this was the longest operating gas station to pump gas on Route 66.

45  Rte 66 Dwight IL

Next stop on Route 66 was the Riviera Restaurant and the Street Car Diner between Gardner and Braceville Illinois. The Riviera is slated to be closed on New Years Day 2009. It has a long and colourful history on Route 66, I am sure someone will come along and purchase the restaurant.

48  Rte 66 Riviera Restaurant & Streetcar Diner btwn Gardner & Braceville IL

Behind the restaurant is a restored Streetcar Diner.

53 Rte 66 Riviera Restaurant & Streetcar Diner btwn Gardner & Braceville IL 54 Rte 66 Riviera Restaurant & Streetcar Diner btwn Gardner & Braceville IL

We stopped in at the Polka Dot Drive In for a couple of milk shakes and to check out this well known Drive In on Route 66.

58 Rte 66 Polka Dot Drive In Braidwood IL

In Wilmington Illinois we found The Launching Pad restaurant and another of the Illinois Giants… The Gemini Giant.

67 Rte 66 Gemini Giant Launching Pad Restaurant Wilmington IL

We will spend the night in Joliet Illinois.

If you wish to view all of our photos from today, you can check them out on my FLICKR site.

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