There are so many exciting things to share with you today that I scarcely know where to begin!
This evening, at Ramada Kingman, the Route 66 Association of Kingman will be hosting their monthly meet and greet at 6:30 PM. This free event, open to the public, is always a great opportunity to mingle with local business owners and community leaders, and to learn about exciting area developments. This evening the guest of honor is Franco Zefferi of Rome, Italy, an avid Route 66 enthusiast. This link is for his blog.
Next month the associations meet and greet will be Rutherford’s 66 Family Diner. The date hasn’t been set but I will provide full details as soon as they become available.
The Best of the West on 66 Festival in Kingman scheduled for the weekend of September 23 that evolved from the Diggin’ and Doggie Days noted by Jack Rittenhouse in A Guide Book to Route 66 published in 1946, will be quite an event this year. Activities include a PRCA sanctioned rodeo, a parade with Dries and Marion Bessels of the Dutch Route 66 Association officiating as grand marshal, a travel expo in the renovated Beale Celebrations building, vendors, live music, car show, rock climbing wall, barbecue, and much, much more. Full details can be found on the Go Kingman website.
The travel expo that will take place during the festival will be an excellent opportunity to showcase your business or community. Yesterday, in talking with Jamie Taylor of Just Marketing, the event organizer, I was told that the City of Needles, Grand Canyon Caverns, Grand Canyon West Resort, and Hualapai Tribe have expressed interest in having a display, and that the City of Holbrook, the Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona, Kingman area wineries, Ramada Kingman, and others will be in attendance.
For more information about the travel expo, contact Jamie Taylor at (928)530-2056 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also scheduled for September, in Kingman, is the Mohave County Fair and Chillin’ on Beale, a delightful low key evnt that centers on cars, cruising, music, and food. The latter takes place on the third Saturday evening of each month, rain or shine, April through October. Ramada Kingman offers a special package for the event that includes tickets to Grand Canyon Caverns.
This morning I had a most fascinating conversation with Larry Clonts, the director of the Economic Development Corporation in Shamrock, Texas. From linking tourism with economic development, a mural initiative, and installation of an electric vehicle charging station at the iconic U Drop Inn to creating a park centered on an authentic piece of the Blarney Stone, this is a community on the move. Harnessing the Route 66 renaissance as a catalyst for revitalization and development is transforming Shamrock, and I am quite excited to see the changes since our last visit in October of 2015.
Once again our Route 66 odyssey will be taking place in October. My dearest friend and I find this to be an ideal time for an adventure on the old double six; cool temperatures, fall colors, and great events such as Cuba Fest in Cuba, Missouri.
This year the fall tour schedule includes a presentation on Route 66 in the Southwest at the iconic Wagon Wheel Motel in Cuba, Friday evening, October 14. In addition, I will be speaking at the Missouri History Museum in St. Louis the following Sunday and Monday.
The following weekend I will be speaking on Route 66 as a catalyst for economic development at the 2nd annual Miles of Possibilities Conference in Bloomington, Illinois. Then in November, I will make a presentation at the 90th anniversary Route 66 celebration in Los Angeles.
On Monday, I will be participating in a conference call with the Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative economic development committee. Updates on pertinent developments will be provided shortly afterwards.
Last evening we had a very productive meeting of the City of Kingman Historic Preservation Commission (I am a volunteer commissioner). Two landmark programs, one for sign restoration and preservation, and one for a building renovation and curb appeal project moved closer to implementation. If linked with the Route 66 Association of Kingman initiative to restore neon signage, it won’t be long before neon lit nights will transform the cities historic core into a destination.
Stephen LeSueur of Blue Sky Marketing is currently developing and upgrading a linked series of more than 150 Route 66 and Kingman area information websites. The first of these, a guide to Kingman restaurants (this is the link) went live last week. The reasonable advertising rates ensure a tremendous return on advertising dollar investment.
“Currently the pricing strategy is as follows: $59/mo for 10 Ads on 10 different sites $100/mofor 10 Ads on 10 different sites plus 1 Featured Listing $250/mo100 Ads on 100 different sites with a Featured Listing on each (All include graphic design for ad if not supplied)”
For more information contact Stephen LeSueur at (928)637-6127.
In the coming weeks the plan is to provide updates on the podcasts, a video series, the travel schedule, and upcoming events. Last but not least, in response to your inquiries, I do not have any details pertaining to a European Route 66 festival in 2017. However, I will make some inquiries and see what can be learned.