MOTHER ROAD RT 66 “BUCKET LIST”

A Weekend Hanging with Motor Heads on Route 66!

Many years it has been my goal to travel on Route 66 beyond a piece here and there. Finally got to drive with over 500 other Motor Heads the longest surviving stretch of Route 66 “Mother Road” during the 35th Annual Fun Run Route 66 from Seligman to Kingman to Topock, 140 miles, fulfi lling one of my Bucket List goals. Offi cial name “U.S. Route 66”, is one of the original highways to be numbered, established in 1926 with road signs shortly thereafter. This was not an original new road but a combination of existing local, state and national roads. It runs from Chicago to Santa Monica with many surviving sections still in use in Arizona. It even has a song named after it, “Get your Kicks on Route 66” as well as a television series “Route 66”. Unfortunately, it was officially removed from the Federal Highway System in 1985 and replaced with the current interstate highway system. Today it’s on many Motor Heads bucket lists to travel on this historic route as many of our forebears did over the years. They gather annually for this celebration of the American Icon, Historic Route 66, of which I participated in.

We planned on this with friends and family to make this trek and prepared for it diligently. The week before friends from Arizona and Nevada showed up in Prescott as a starting place for our group. Of course, we had a bit of gear wrenching and fixing those last-minute issues so we could make the trek problem free, except Jim who locked his keys in his 40 at Cool Springs!

Friday, we headed to Seligman for the festivities, the starting point and picked up our credentials. Activities included Loudest Exhaust, slow drags, push drags, Seligman Route 66 Parade and Burn Out Box, my favorite. Nothing like fresh rubber just after sundown to reinvigorate what it’s like to be Hot Rodder. Lunch was at Roadkill Café, great service and food to match, they earned my business. The evening finished with dancing and live music which was darn good and I would like to see the band again, motorhead music for sure. Since motels are booked decades in advance, we traveled back to Prescott for an early departure to get in the 500-car line of cruisers headed down Route 66 to Kingman.

Saturday, dark thirty we caravan to Seligman from Prescott in single military fashion up 89 to 40 then got off on Route 66 Seligman. The town was a bit sleepy from the previous day’s nonstop activities. We got there, 7am, in time to get a table for breakfast at Roadkill Café. Next, we got in line for the Route 66 Super Cruise/ Adventure and fulfilled one of my Bucket List items. There were many opportunities to stop to enjoy the local culture. The fi rst pit stop was Peach Springs who had live music, samples and giveaways, but most important restrooms! Many runs forget us older dudes need to stop every couple hours! Hackberry General Store was a Hoot, never have I seen 100 lbs of memorabilia in a 10 lb box! Friendly folks, parking was handled well with easy in easy out. The building is quirky with rusty early iron with cool gas pumps, a motor heads paradise. Of course, we supported the local economy as well as used the pit stop facilities. Note heading home on Monday from Havasu to Prescott driving our 50 Mercury Sled pulled into a station and what is there, a Hackberry School bus! Talked to the driver, Paul, and told him how much we appreciated how they kept this legacy alive for us to experience. He was Kool and now follows us on Facebook, small world. Next stop was Kingman for the rest of the day and parked on with the ShowNShine. Over 800 classic cars/trucks were in attendance with many spectators and Route 66 Motor Heads. They did have an arch you could drive under, we passed on it as the line was too long! The wind did pick up and threatened to repossess our awning, so we packed up and called it a day.

Sunday was the awards at the Lewis Kingman Park, well attended, parking was a premium with many awards presented after which we started the fi nal leg of our adventure. First stop was Cool Springs, a pit stop and refreshments, then back on the road thru “rattlesnake road”, yes, it’s curvy! Lots of kool rides on the road, had to watch for the tourists and photo op folks. Pulling Oatman, parking was nonexistent, but did see a few donkeys. Could not stop so we did a slow cruise through town, a lot of tourists and Route 66 Motor Heads. Would like to go back when we could stop and take in the local flavor. Continuing we passed through Golden Shores and finally ended up at Topock/Golden Shores Community Center to our much-earned “Cool Springs 2024” patch for making the run. Food, refreshments, raffles and music were waiting for us while we collected our booty. A bit windy and dusty but we got through it then headed on to Topock then on to Havasu for the night.

Monday’s schedule was to travel back to Prescott via I40. I know it was a very rough road last year, but we drove our 50 Mercury Sled 75+ all the way and it was not a bad drive, as road repairs were much appreciated and saved the day for us. Had a quick pit stop outside Kingman and where we hooked up with the Hackberry school bus. We talked a bit with the driver, a motorhead, and back on the road home. All in all, it was great to do this once… and now it’s not on my bucket list, but if it’s on yours this is your best bet!