Well it would seem that line about the well laid plans of mice and men is holding true. The long and short of it is after months of wrangling, negotiation, frustration, and hope we (the Kingman Route 66 Association) are just one step short of being back to square one.
Last year at just about this time we kicked of an ambitious and visionary project to relight the historic district and the Route 66 corridor with vintage neon that would add continuity and encourage visitors to do more than pass through. We targeted the historic Old Trails Garage just west of the Brunswick Hotel as our first project after discovering the original Packard sales and service sign was in storage for more than sixty years.
We obtained estimates for the restoration and placement of the sign, a matching funds grant, and launched numerous fund raisers. All was set to roll when the owner apparently decided the sign might be to valuable for placement.
Our second project, adding color to the historic district and Route 66 corridor with murals depicting this communities fascinating history was equally frustrating. We secured a location with owners approval, selected an artist and a mural depicting the history of the Hualapai people form their creation story to the future which is the sky walk at Grand Canyon West, sought funding from the Grand Canyon West Resort and received a tentative approval.
Then, literally, the day before final approval resignation of a board member at the resort as a result of personal issues tossed everything on the back burner. Now, we are on hold indefinitely. So, here to we are almost back to square one.
Now, for the first mural, we need to raise $8,500. On the plus side we have numerous locations approved for the next murals as well as the cities blessing.
The sign project is still alive. At tonight’s meeting it will be proposed we approach the Mohave Museum of History and Arts to form a partnership utilizing our approved grant as well as the vintage City Cafe sign with a goal being to light the back parking lot along Route 66 with this sign.
Another project of interest also pertains to signage. The initial steps have been taken to create and place signage marking the various alignments of Route 66 in the area with indication as to the dates these were utilized. In addition there is a hope we can incorporate these into a bicycle trail system. Hopefully, we can move that along this evening.