Two weeks ago, it was Republican presidential candidate John McCain stopping at a Route 66 icon, Ted Drewes Frozen Custard in St. Louis.
On his way to Rolla, Obama’s campaign bus took a quick detour. It made an unannounced stop at the Bell Restaurant on Historic Route 66 in Lebanon, and left the lunch crowd in awe. Some diners had heard he was coming but others had no idea.
“I thought, ‘My God, it’s him!’” said one diner.
The pit stop was no coincidence. It was designed to reinforce his commitment to fight for rural voters in a traditionally conservative area. […]
In Lebanon, most of the crowd at the Bell forgot about their economic woes for a few seconds, as they were starstruck by the visit to their town by Obama.
Obama also made campaign stops in the Route 66 towns of Springfield and Rolla.