Sunday, September 5, 2010

Route 66

We survived the family gathering and decided to see some old Rt 66 sights in the immediate area.  We grew up living within 9 miles of Rt 66 and traveled the old road all the time.  To us it was just another highway in the area and a good place to go out and race at top speed.  There weren't any speed limits in the 50s so racing was a popular past time.  Hard to believe we survived it.

The Ariston Cafe in Litchfield, IL was a favorite place of ours to eat when we were younger.  It was on the "Old" Rt 66 and has been situated there since 1935.  There was an earlier version across the street from this one but it was on leased property.  

Soulsby's Shell station in Mt. Olive, IL is also on the "Old" Rt 66 and has been there for many years.  We met the owner of the station about 10 years ago and still remember when it was an operational gas station.  He also repaired TV's had a room full of vacumn tubes in the gas station.  He has since passed away and I wonder what happened to all those old tubes.

A short distance away is the old Crossroads Cafe that sat right next to Rt 66 and has been in operation for as long as I can remember.  It is still a very busy spot and you can find my brother in just about every day that he is in the area.  It was originally a shiny metal diner and has been added to with a small dining room.  The serve good meals at a very reasonable price.  The red truck in front is my brothers pickup truck.


A better writeup of Soulsbys and the Ariston Cafe can be found at the following website.
http://www.theroadwanderer.net/66Illinois/litchfield.htm 

We were running around the contryside west of Gillespie, Il geocaching a took a short drive over to Beaver Dam State Park to visit with Gloria & Doug who were spending the summer camped at her brothers house.  He made them a very nice full hookup site and they even have a boat next to their motor home.  

We were heading back to the Litchfield area for dinner when it was decided to eat dinner at the Beaver Dam State Park concession stand.  Jeanie, Curt, Dick, Sue, Gerry and I went there for dinner.  The food was good and company even better.

Throw in geo caching for an hour or two and we were two very tired people.  There are a number of small country cemeteries around Gillespie and I have ancestors buried in a number of them.  One such cemetery is the Morrison Cemetery with about 75 graves in it.  It is very well maintained, however it is difficult to find and even more difficult to get to.  It just so happened that there was a geocache in the cemetery so we followed the GPS and it took us right to it.  The road got progressively worse and we were driving between two cornfields for the last mile or so.  See for yourself.




The bed really felt good that evening.

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