Click HERE to see a list of episodes in chronological order, traveling from Chicago to Santa Monica.
Episode 45: The Munger Moss Motel
Ramona Lehman is just as iconic as The Munger Moss Motel and recently celebrated 50 years as the owner and operator of a Route 66 must see stopover along The Mother Road.
Episode 44: Miami, OK: Royal Air Force Cadets final resting place along Route 66
During the early days of WWII, the Route 66 community of Miami welcomed over 2000 British Cadets as part of a training program to prepare pilots for combat over their homeland of England.
Episode 43: The Tulsa Race Massacre
Just before the birth of Route 66, the single worst incident of racial violence in American history took place in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Within 24 hours, more than 35 square blocks in the Greenwood section of Tulsa were burned, causing 10,000 residents in one of the wealthiest black communities in America to instantly become homeless.
Episode 42: Winslow, AZ: Standin’ on the Corner
Popularized by the famous song, Take It Easy, one of the most famous street corners along Route 66 created was written by Jackson Browne. Today, Winslow, Arizona, contains a small park on a corner of Route 66 featuring both a mural and bronze statue. Join host Anthony Arno as he talks with both of the artists who have made the Winslow corner one of the most popular stops along Route 66.
Episode 41: END OF ROUTE 66: The Santa Monica Pier with Dan Rice
Dan Rice operates one of the most famous Route 66 souvenir shops along Route 66, located on The Santa Monica Pier. Dan is a past president of the California Route 66 Association and was instrumental in placing the famous End of the Trail sign on the Santa Monica Pier. This is the final episode in a 3 part series featuring The Beginning, The Middle, and The End of Route 66.
Episode 40: MIDDLE OF ROUTE 66: The Midpoint Cafe
Brenda Bradley operates The Midpoint Cafe, a popular stop where travelers stop for a picture in front of the famous sign. This is the second episode in a 3 part series featuring The Beginning, The Middle, and The End of Route 66.
Episode 39: BEGINNING OF ROUTE 66: Chicago with Windy City Road Warrior Dave Clark
David Clark , operates Windy City Road Warrior and offers walking tours of Chicago along Route 66. The first in a 3 part series features everything you need to know about starting (or ending) a Route 66 tour in Chicago, IL.
Episode 38: Bob “Crocodile” Lile
Bob Lile , otherwise known as “Croc” owns and operates Lile Art Gallery along 6th Avenue in historic Amarillo, Texas. He’s known for creating Cadilite jewelry using paint chips from the nearby Cadillac Ranch.
Episode 37: Roamin’ Rich
Roamin’ Rich represents the latest generation of preservationists dedicated to promote and preserve Route 66. He is the president of the Missouri Route 66 Association, a key member in the Painted Desert Trading Post cooperative, and the person behind most of the shields you see painted on the roadway.
Episode 36: Peter MacDonald – Navajo Code Talker
At the age of 15 as a Navajo Native American, Peter MacDonald enlisted in the US Marines simply because he admired the official uniform. Shortly after boot camp, he was recruited into a secret military program that would rely on a language that has no written form for what would later be known as a Navajo Code Talker.
Episode 35: Route 66 Scholarship Winners
The Route 66 Podcast Scholarship winners have been announced, and they are featured on the current episode of The Route 66 Podcast.
Episode 34: The Bloomington-Normal Circus Legacy along Route 66
Unknown to many, the Bloomington-Normal (Illinois) area along The Mother Road is the birthplace to aerial circus performance in America. The circus episode features a talk with three area residents, including the Human Cannonball, Wayne Wright who has been shot out of a cannon over 1100 times.
Episode 33: Jim Hinckley – Route 66 Author, Tour Guide, and Advocate
For more than three decades Jim Hinckley has been telling people where to go and sharing the adventure. His passion for Route 66, the back roads of America and the automobiles he has shared through books, feature articles, blog posts, video, Facebook live programs, and presentations.
Episode 32: The Blue Whale of Catoosa
Blaine Davis (78 years old) talks about his fathers life long work as the director of the Tulsa Zoo, growing up with parents who truly appreciated the outdoors, and what prompted Hugh to construct The Blue Whale upon retirement despite not having any welding experience or working with cement.
Episode 31: The Blue Swallow Motel
Perhaps one of the most popular motels along Route 66, The Blue Swallow Motel has been in operation since 1941 and still provides patrons with private garages for their vehicles. Originally received as a wedding gift from her fiance, Lillian Redman ran the motel for over 40 years before stepping back from the hospitality business in her late 80’s. Since that time, there have been other owners, but Kevin and Nancy Mueller have maintained the true character of The Blue Swallow since 2011 that would have made Lillian proud.
Episode 30: The Keeley Institute
Long before the glory days of Route 66, the Route 66 town of Dwight, IL, was the center of the world thanks to a Civil War surgeon who established the world’s first treatment center for alcohol and drug addiction. Dr. Keeley’s method involved having patients ingest flecks of gold dust, which was very secretive at the time.
Episode 29: The El Vado Motel
Chadd Rennaker recently purchased a 1937 Route 66 motel and not only restored the motel to its original charm, but he also converted select rooms into a gathering space for area merchants. The result is a Route 66 destination that allows travelers not only a place to stay, but also a place to sample the local food and crafts from the region. Join Route 66 host Anthony Arno as he talks with Chadd about restoring the El Vado Motel in Albuquerque, NM.
Episode 28: Trucking Along Route 66
Tom Peters is the Dean of Library Services at Missouri State University, and an oral historian. Join Route 66 host Anthony Arno as he talks with Tom about his interviews with twenty two individuals directly associated with the trucking industry along Route 66.
Episode 27: A talk with former Harvey Girls
The final segment of a three part series featuring The Fred Harvey Company. Route 66 Podcast talks with former Fred Harvey employees, including twins Bernette Jarvis (left) Beverly Ireland (right) and Toni Pachinko.
Episode 26: Allan Affeldt – La Posada & La Castaneda Historic Fred Harvey Route 66 Hotels
Arizona based entrepreneur Allan Affeldt has successfully proven more than once that he can purchase old, abandoned railroad buildings along Route 66 that has had the Fred Harvey footprint and converted them into historically beautiful hotels in the southwest.
Episode 25: The Fred Harvey Company with author Stephen Fried
Stephen Fried is a past editor of Philadelphia Magazine and has written Thing of Beauty: Tragedy of Supermodel Gia, and Benjamin Rush, the Visionary Doctor Who Became a Founding Father. For the Route 66 community, Fried has written the ultimate Fred Harvey book, Appetite for America: How Visionary Businessman Fred Harvey Built a Railroad Hospitality Empire That Civilized the Wild West, which took five years of continuous research.
Episode 24: The Rock Cafe
The proprietor of The Rock Cafe, Dawn Welch, is a Route 66 icon and was the inspiration for the character Sally Carrera in the CARS movie. The Rock Cafe was constructed in 1939 from leftover sandstone rock that was used to construct Route 66.
Episode 23: The Launching Pad Drive-In & Gemini Giant
The original Launching Pad Restaurant opened in 1960 by John Korelc under a different name, and while attending the National Restaurant Convention, Korelc paid $3500 for a fiberglass Muffler Man to draw attention to his restaurant. Korelc had his newly purchased fiberglass giant updated to keep in line with the 1960’s space race as an astronaut with helmet and rocket, and renamed the restaurant, as the “Launching Pad”. There was a naming contest and the fiberglass giant soon became known as The Gemini Giant which has always been a popular photo opp for many traveling through Wilmington, just 60 miles out of Chicago.
Episode 22: The Wild Burros of Oatman, AZ
This episode of The Route 66 Podcast features my talk with Jackie Roland Murray, author of a popular book highlighting Oatman history and owner of Fast Fanny’s Gift Shop. Today, Oatman is one of the most popular Route 66 towns and is known for the wild burrows that roam the streets. Jackie shares with me many interesting stories from this town that once had a population of 10,000 residents during the gold rush years. Today, the population of Oatman is just 150 people and several thousand burros.
Episode 21: Jack Rabbit Trading Post
The Jack Rabbit Trading Post is a convenience store and curio shop in Joseph City, Arizona. It was formerly a snake farm and became famous for a series of billboards that stretched from Missouri to Arizona, each bearing the silhouette of a jack rabbit featuring the distance from that sign to the trading post. In front of the store was another such billboard with “HERE IT IS” written underneath it. At the trading post, a large fiberglass jackrabbit can be mounted for picture taking and is considered a major Route 66 fixture.
In the 2006 film Cars, the trading post’s “HERE IT IS” signage is depicted with a Model T Ford in place of the jackrabbit and “Lizzie” (a 1923 Ford) as the store’s proprietor. Jack Rabbit Trading Post Cindy Jaquez talks about some of the challenges of keeping a Route 66 institution in the family for so many years, especially after being bypassed by the Interstate.
Episode 20: Times Beach
Times Beach, Missouri, contains both the biggest environmental disaster and story that most people are not familiar with along Route 66. Yet, during the 1980’s the plight of Times Beach reached international attention.
Episode 19: The Wagon Wheel Motel
The Wagon Wheel Motel is the longest, continuously operated motel along Route 66. Route 66 Podcast host Anthony talks with Connie Echols, owner of The Wagon Wheel Motel. Connie purchased the hotel at an age when most people prepare for retirement, and Connie has been busy ever since.
Episode 18: Goffs Mojave Desert Trails Road and Route 66
Long before Route 66, travelers would take the Mojave Road 130 miles across the Mojave Desert. Join Anthony Arno as he talks with Dennis Casebier, founder of the Mojave Desert Heritage and Cultural Association, about his early attempts to create a hiking trail to preserve the Mojave Road.
Episode 17: Meramec Caverns
Meramec Caverns is one of the most famous sights along Route 66 and consists of almost 5 miles of a cavern system outside St. Louis, Missouri. Join host Anthony Arno as he talks with the grandson of the founder of the caverns, Les Turulli.
Les talks about how his grandfather came up with the idea of painting the sides of barns along Route 66 to promote the caverns to travelers, far and wide. In addition, as a young boy, Les tells about how he helped his grandfather affix promotional tags onto the bumpers of cars, which eventually gave birth to the bumper sticker.
Episode 16: The 1928 Bunion Derby with author Charles Kastner
In order to promote the newly created highway, a transcontinental footrace took place from LA to NY, partly along Route 66. It was nothing short of a carnival with CC Pyle running the show, often compared to PT Barnum.
Episode 15: The Will Rogers Memorial & Museum
Just who was Will Rogers and why is Route 66 often called the Will Rogers Highway? Hear my talk with the Director of the Will Rogers Memorial Museum talk about the life of this cowboy, humorist, newspaper columnist, columnist, and movie star who is otherwise know as Oklahoma’s favorite son.
Episode 14: The Road Crew America’s Route 66 Band
The Road Crew – America’s Route 66 Band takes the Mother Road to their audiences throughout the world. Founding member Joe Loesch talks about meeting his bandmate during the Vietnam War and how a series of albums honoring Route 66 came about.
Episode 13: Fort Reno W.W. II POW Camp
Fort Reno in Oklahoma was once the home to 1300 German Prisoners of War (POW’s) during World War II. Carolyn Barker shares some of the most fascinating (and unknown) stories about the Fort Reno POW camp.
Episode 12: The Muffler Men
Joel Baker has a passion for visiting and restoring the remaining fiberglass giants that grace the roadside of America, including Route 66. Hear Joel talk about this travels around America in search of these giant roadside attractions.
Episode 11: The Tucumcari Route 66 Monument
Tom Coffin entered a design contest and would eventually become the artist behind the Route 66 Monument in Tucumcari, NM. Tom talks about his restorative work in NYC and the design behind the Route 66 monument.
Episode 10: The Coral Court Motel
The Coral Court Motel opened in 1941 and had an unusual art deco design and each room had an adjacent garage for travelers to park their automobile. Join Shellee Graham, author of Tales from the Coral Court, talk about the fascinating history of The Coral Court and the man behind this fabled hotel, John Carr.
Episode 9: Route 66 News Website
The Route 66 News website at www.Route66News.com is a clearinghouse of news and historic events taking place along The Mother Road. Join The Route 66 Podcast host Anthony Arno as he interviews the curator of Route 66 News, Ron Warnick.
Episode 8: The Tattoo Man of Route 66
Are you a dedicated fan of Route 66? What makes you think so? Do you have tons of Route 66 memorobilia in your home? A wide assortment of Route 66 t-shirts? Something special that screams out Route 66 on your car?
Join host Anthony Arno on The Route 66 Podcast as he interviews the ultimate Route 66 fan, Ron Jones. Ron has over 150 tattoos on his body dedicated to Route 66.
Episode 7: The Burma Shave Story with Clinton B. Odell
Burma-Shave was a popular brand of brushless shaving cream, made famous by a brilliant advertising campaign that featured a series of witty rhyming poems appearing in a sequence of roadside signs that would entertain the motorist driving down the road.
Episode 6: NPS Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program
Administered by the National Park Service, the Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program is the federal governments program to preserve and educate the public all about historic Route 66.
Episode 5: Fireballs Legend George Tomsco
As the founding member of The Fireballs, George Tomsco talks about the bands early history while playing along Route 66, what it means to being credited with the sound of Surf Music, and what it was like having the biggest hit in America just before the Beatles arrival.
Episode 4: Dylan Wallace
This episode features a talk with the youngest generation of Route 66 historians, Dylan Wallace, a high school senior who painted a Route 66 mural on the side of a Wilmington, IL, antique shop.
Episode 3: Angel Delgadillo
He’s the guardian of Route 66: Angel Delgadillo. At almost 90 years old, he’s been a fixture on Route 66 in Seligman, Arizona since the day he was born. Angel formed the very first Route 66 Association in the world when he saw that the local economy begin to decline when the Interstate was opened.
Episode 2: Michael Wallis
He’s written over 30 books on the American west, but one of the earliest ones was simply titled Route 66: The Mother Road. He’s also one of the biggest Route 66 advocates that you’ll ever meet, and the voice of Sheriff in Pixar’s animated movie, CARS. Listen to the very first guest on The Route 66 Podcast discuss his earliest memories of Route 66, his role in the creation of CARS, and the not so famous past stories about The Mother Road.
Episode 1: Introduction
What happens almost 20 years after a New Jersey school teacher attracts national attention by having his students successfully bicycle over 2000 miles in the classroom aboard an exercise bike while learning all about Route66 with the school’s only computer connected to the Internet? The Route 66 Podcast!
Listen to this very first episode of The Route 66 Podcast to hear all about the program and a little bit about Anthony Arno, a 5th Grade teacher from New Jersey with a passion for The Mother Road.