Longtime Route 66 artist Bob Waldmire will have his first-ever art show at the Route 66 Museum in Clinton, Okla., from June 1 to June 30. His 1965 Mustang "fastback" also will be on display there.
Waldmire will make a personal appearance at the museum during the June 1-4 weekend.
I unexpectedly ran into Waldmire at Hillbillee's restaurant in Arcadia, Okla., a few days ago. He gave me a hand-drawn placard that advertises his exhibit at Clinton. Alas, it didn't fit on the scanner I use.
The movie's van was originally going to be named Waldmire. But the real Waldmire said he refused to sign the movie's release form for for several reasons, including Disney owning the rights in perpetuity and that toys featuring his character would be placed in McDonald's Happy Meals. Waldmire is a vegetarian and takes his beliefs seriously, so he had problems with his cartoon likeness being next to a hamburger. He said he offered Disney a counterproposal that would have funneled some money to charity, but it was turned down.
He has no regrets. Waldmire says he's creating a plush toy of his customized VW van and hopes to have it for sale within the next few weeks. He'll also be at the Route 66 Festival in Albuquerque next month.