A closer look at the Route 66 Motorheads Bar, Grill and Museum in Springfield

WSEC-TV, a PBS affiliate in Springfield, Illinois, recently posted a video tour of Route 66 Motorheads Bar, Grill and Museum in Springfield and talked with its enthusiastic owner, Ron Metzger. As you'll see from the 27-minute video, Metzger has collected all sorts of memorabilia from defunct Route 66 landmarks such as Shea's Gas Station Museum, … Continue reading A closer look at the Route 66 Motorheads Bar, Grill and Museum in Springfield

Route 66 Motorheads Bar and Grill will open in March

Route 66 Motorheads Bar & Grill in Springfield, Illinois, which contains memorabilia from Route 66 sites in central Illinois, is slated to open in March. The Springfield State Journal-Register reported the former Stuckey's restaurant on Toronto Road on the west side of Interstate 55 will open its bar and gaming room in mid-March, its grill … Continue reading Route 66 Motorheads Bar and Grill will open in March

The home of the Bel-Aire Motel Sputnik

I missed this when it happened last summer, but Ace Sign Co. of Springfield, Illinois, restored the Sputnik sign that stood atop the Bel-Aire Motel and displays it in its museum. The Bel-Aire, a longtime Route 66 motel, was torn down last year after hundreds of code violations. According to a story on the Illinois Route 66 … Continue reading The home of the Bel-Aire Motel Sputnik

Springfield mayor ends up with Bel-Aire Motel’s seal

The mayor of Springfield, Illinois, is the new owner of the seal sculpture that once stood at the now-demolished Bel-Air Motel on Route 66 in Springfield, according to the State Journal-Register. Jim Langfelder said he paid $2,500 of his own money for the 8,000-pound statue, which once stood as a fountain near what used to be … Continue reading Springfield mayor ends up with Bel-Aire Motel’s seal

Signs saved from the demolished Bel-Aire Motel

An article this week in the The State Journal-Register answers one question in the wake of the demolition of the Bel-Air Motel in Springfield, Illinois -- what will happen to the neon signs? The short answer: They've been acquired by two local residents, where they likely will be restored. Retired Springfield businessman Ron Metzger and … Continue reading Signs saved from the demolished Bel-Aire Motel

Demolition of Bel-Aire Motel begins

The razing of the long-troubled and condemned Bel-Aire Motel along Route 66 in Springfield, Illinois, began Monday, according to varying media outlets in the city. The Springfield State Journal-Register published a gallery of photos of Sheppard's Auto Sales & Salvage doing the demolition work. The company's owner said he hoped he would be finished within … Continue reading Demolition of Bel-Aire Motel begins

Bel-Aire sputnik will be restored for sign company’s museum

For those who worried about the fate of the sputnik structure atop the doomed Bel-Air Motel in Springfield, Illinois, do not worry. Ace Sign Co. of Springfield removed the sputnik over the weekend and eventually will restore it for its neon museum that coincidentally opens today, according to the State Journal-Register. The fiberglass ball of … Continue reading Bel-Aire sputnik will be restored for sign company’s museum

Teardown schedule for Bel-Aire Motel solidifies

The historic but long-troubled Bel-Aire Motel in Springfield, Illinois, will be demolished by late summer or early fall, according to Tim Landis in his State Journal-Register business column. It earlier was reported the motel on South Sixth Street (aka Route 66) would be torn down by summer. However, demolition permits haven't yet been filed. Current … Continue reading Teardown schedule for Bel-Aire Motel solidifies

Bel-Aire Motel will be gone by summer

The owners of the troubled Bel-Aire Motel in Springfield, Illinois, reached a settlement agreement this week with the city to vacate and tear down the historic structure within six months, reported the State Journal-Register. The decrepit and crime-infested motel had racked up more than 1,000 code violations and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines over the years. … Continue reading Bel-Aire Motel will be gone by summer

Owner of troubled Bel-Aire Motel dies

Gopal Motwani, owner of the historic but troubled Bel-Aire Motel on Sixth Street (aka Route 66) in Springfield, Illinois, died Saturday near his home in Naples, Florida, reported the Springfield State Journal-Register. After putting the motel up for sale for $750,000 -- plus $114,000 in fines for 700 code violations -- this summer, Motwani told the newspaper he … Continue reading Owner of troubled Bel-Aire Motel dies