First, I hope that you enjoyed a most delightful Christmas. At our homestead it was a low key, quiet affair – just my dearest friend and I, a simple breakfast, a few packages, and then a most pleasant afternoon with our son, his fiance, and grandchildren. We returned home, enjoyed a wonderful roast my dear wife had prepared earlier, and shared a bottle of wine. It made for a relaxing, reflective, and memorable Christmas. 
Now, lets discuss a new project that will provide you with a broader audience for the sharing of stories about your Route 66 adventures while providing an opportunity to win free books. 
Here is the way this will work. Send me you stories about Route 66 adventures, recent or decades ago, include your contact information, permission to reprint, and any photos you would like to share, and I will post them on a special page being set up this week. Once a month the best story will be selected, included in a special edition blog post, and the winner will receive one of my Route 66 books direct from the publisher. As a bonus, if you bring the book with you on a Route 66 adventure that includes a stop in Kingman, I will add a signature and buy you a root beer at Mr. D’z Route 66 Diner. The first winner will be selected on February 1.
Author Jim Hinckley discusses Route 66 with
Nick Adam of the Ariston Cafe

Since shameless self promotion is a big part of this mornings post, it should be noted that I am currently working on another Route 66 book. This one, however, is a bit different from previous projects. 

First, the publisher has given me a relatively short deadline, April 15. Second, the focus of this project is primarily on Route 66 in the modern era, the changing face of the Route 66 community, and the people that make the Route 66 adventure memorable as well as special. I also want to highlight the people that are working to ensure that the roads next 90 years are as exciting as the first nine decades, and, perhaps, provide a bit of inspiration by sharing stories about their projects.  

If your involved with a Route 66 project from the opening of a new business or building renovation to community revitalization, and would like to share a bit of your story, please contact me. Perhaps I can weave your story into the project.
The recent publication of a guidebook to the Kingman historic district and the surrounding area, also in e-book format, both available through was the next step in the evolution of Jim Hinckley’s America, a grouping of services to ensure that travelers get the most from their adventure on Route 66 and the road less traveled, and to provide business owners, communities, and museums with unique promotional opportunities.
To this, tours of Kingman and special presentations have been added. These are available through Vayable, by contacting me directly to make arrangements, or by booking a package that includes lodging through Ramada Kingman.
I am also working as a consultant with Open Road Productions to develop fully customized tours ranging from region specific ones in the southwest or along Route 66, to multi-week explorations of the entire Route 66 corridor. Please note, currently under development is a self guided tour of Route 66 designed by me that is held in conjunction with the 90th anniversary celebration of the old double six that will take place in Los Angeles at the highways original western terminus next November. If your interested in these services, or in being a sponsor for next years anniversary tour, contact Rick Thomas at Open Road Productions.     

Partridge Creek Bridge

Next, in addition to working as a consultant for Ramada Kingman to assist in their transformation of this historic motel into a Route 66 resort, I am also serving in a similar capacity for the Route 66 Association of Kingman on a variety of projects that have as a goal the transformation of Kingman into a destination. Most of these are a part of their visionary 66 Celebrates 90 initiative. 

The associations initiative has three primary components; an ambitious program to relight the Kingman historic district with vintage and reproduction neon signs, to assist the organizers of Chillin’ on Beale to make these monthly gatherings into major events, and to develop the 160 Miles of Smiles of marketing campaign that promotes Kingman as being at the center of a vacation paradise.
The 160 mile reference is regards to the Route 66 corridor from Topock to the Partridge Creek Bridge. Technically the distance is closer to 157 3/4 miles but that lacks the catch phrase quality of 160 miles of smiles. 
On January 16, the fund raising initiative for the associations neon project kicks off at Beale Celebrations. I am will be making a presentation entitled, an Armchair Tour of Route 66, held in conjunction with a dinner, and wine from Stetson Winery. The cost per person for $25.00. Seating is limited so if you plan on attending, I suggest getting tickets early. For more information, for a press release, or for tickets contact Jamie Taylor at Just Marketing, (928)530-2056. 
There will also be a silent auction, an excellent opportunity to support a worthy cause and promote your business. Afterwards, there will be an informal pub crawl tour in the historic district. 
That takes us to the subject of neon signs. The association is looking for signs that can be restored. Ideally, these would be from the Kingman area but any signs from the Route 66 corridor would be acceptable. Informative kiosks about the signs history is a part of the program. 
For reproduction signs, there have been discussions with Joel Rayburn of Glassboy Studios. This companies work is superb. An excellent example is the sign recently installed at the iconic Blue Swallow Motel.  
I am also providing consultation for the Grand Canyon Western Ranch and Grand Canyon Caverns. Both companies have agreed to let me offer travelers special discounts. Use promo code Hinckley when booking any package at Grand Canyon Western Ranch and receive a 10% discount. I can also provide a discount for lodging at Grand Canyon Caverns, contact me for details. Also, contact me in regards to retaining my services as a promotional development consultant for your business. 
The last item of the day pertains to the first European Route 66 festival scheduled for July. Unless something rather dramatic transpires between now and July, we will be in attendance. It would be my pleasure to answer any Route 66 related questions you might have, and to sign your books during the event. I hope to see you there.