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Sherlock Luke October 31, 2010

Posted by Ron Warnick in Religion.
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In this latest episode of “Route 66: A Road Trip through the Bible,” we learn that Luke was quite a sleuth.

Cars Land reaches construction milestone October 30, 2010

Posted by Ron Warnick in Attractions, Movies.
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The Cars Land complex at Disneyland Resort, patterned after the fictional Route 66 town of Radiator Springs in the movie “Cars,” reached a milestone Friday when a final steel supporting beam was fastened to the Cadillac Range, according to the Orange County Register.

The Cadillac Range is a fictional mountain range patterned after the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas. The Cadillac Range will be the tallest point of the Cars Land complex, reaching 125 feet tall.

It will take up about half of Cars Land and is the backdrop for the Radiator Springs Racers ride.

The 280,000-square-foott structure is the largest rockwork job at any U.S. Disney park — even bigger than the Matterhorn and Splash Mountain. Disney describes the rockwork as “one-of-a-kind” and complex because it has few 90-degree angles.

“Visitors will look at the steel and say, ‘Wow, I’ve never seen anything like this before,’ ” said Dennis Breen, a project executive of Clark Construction who is working on the project. “I’ve been in the business for 40 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this.”

While construction is blocked from the park, the Cars Land steel structure and cranes can be seen from the nearby I-5 freeway and park visitors can see crews and trucks.

The story includes a graphic about the complex that shows what Radiator Springs will feature, including Flo’s V-8 Cafe, Sarge’s Surplus Hut, Fillmore’s Taste-In, Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree, Cozy Cone Motel, Radiator Springs Curio Shop, Luigi’s Flying Tires, Radiator Springs Courthouse, and Ramone’s House of Body Art.

Cars Land is scheduled to be finished in 2012.

Pontiac museum may come to Pontiac, naturally October 30, 2010

Posted by Ron Warnick in Museums, Preservation, Vehicles.
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In this story Friday in the New York Times about the dying Pontiac vehicle brand, which officially ends tomorrow, I stumbled on this intriguing passage:

“You hate to see them go, but they were floundering and couldn’t find their place in the market,” said Tim Dye, who owns 21 Pontiacs from various eras and a huge collection of Pontiac memorabilia — started with a bottle of GTO cologne from his uncle — that he had assembled over more than 30 years.

Mr. Dye’s home in Oklahoma, along with two buildings on his property, are filled with thousands of items from Pontiac’s past, including showroom brochures, advertising posters, model cars, pencils, ashtrays and matchbooks. Now that Pontiac is gone, Mr. Dye plans to turn his collection into a museum in Pontiac, Ill., a city on Route 66.

“I can’t think of anything better to do than just visit with people about Pontiac every day,” he said.

It turns out that Dye lives in the Tulsa suburb of Broken Arrow, Okla. And, in an e-mail, Dye said he plans to move his Pontiac collection to Pontiac fairly quickly:

The folks in Pontiac are helping us very much and are very excited about the museum. The mayor and city administrator spent last weekend here looking at our collection and getting a handle on the whole project. They can see it will be their largest attraction and a big boost for their tourism. If all goes according to plan we will probably start packing in January, it will take months to move everything. They would like to have a grand opening of phase 1 in June or July, it will probably take several steps to get everything set up and going.

Dye isn’t an ordinary memorabilia collector, either. Going to his website, you can see he’s written a book, and here’s his brochure (Acrobat file) about his Pontiac Vintage Press & Library.

12/7/2010 UPDATE: The Bloomington Pantagraph published a story today about Dye’s upcoming move to Pontiac.

12/14/2010 UPDATE: The Pantagraph reported that the city of Pontiac is still looking for a suitable location for Dye’s museum. The mayor spoke to the city council about the benefits of landing the museum, in tandem with the Route 66 museum, Walldog Museum, and Livingston County War Museum.

Illinois receives grant for bicycle trail October 29, 2010

Posted by Ron Warnick in Bicycling.
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McLean County, Ill., has received a $1.5 million federal grant to help build a 4-mile bicycle trail along Route 66 from Normal to Towanda, according to the Bloomington Pantagraph.

The money came from federal excise taxes on fuel, and can be used for developing alternative forms of transportation. Local matching funds are required for such projects.

The county’s share is $385,000, which also will be covered partially by communities along the trail.

From the article:

The latest grant will cover the distance from Shelbourne Drive in Normal to County Road 29 which enters Towanda from the north. Engineering will be completed in 2011 and work will be done in 2012, he said.

The Historic Route 66 Bike Trail will eventually run about 370 miles from Chicago to the Illinois state line along the corridor of Old Route 66 and its precursor Highway 4, said Doug Oehler of Bloomington, a member of the project’s steering committee and vice president of the League of Illinois Bicyclists, an advocacy group.

Parts of the trail have been completed in Towanda and Lexington as well as a 4.5-mile stretch from southwest Bloomington to Shirley, which officially opened about a month ago. Oehler said the path, which makes it safe and easy to ride to Funks Grove and the popular Sugar Grove Nature Center, is well-used by cyclists and walkers already.

“It’s been a home run,” said Oehler.

Other states are starting to get on board in building bicycle trails along Route 66. But Illinois is way ahead in this effort.

Let’s get some dessert October 28, 2010

Posted by Ron Warnick in Restaurants.
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Here’s a video about Ted Drewes Frozen Custard, St. Louis’ most popular place to get frozen treats.

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