7, June 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Spencer's Grill

When most St. Louisans think of Route 66, they tend to think of Watson Road in South County. Watson is widely known as Historic Route 66. With stops such as Ted DrewesDonut Drive-InCrestwood Bowl, and the gone-but-still-infamous Coral Court all within a few miles, it’s easy to see why that stretch is so memorable. But when Route 66 passed through large cities, it was rarely just one road; drivers could actually choose which alignment of Route 66 they wanted to take. Read more »

10, April 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Crestwood Bowl

Let’s be honest: For most people, bowling falls into the just-for-kicks category, which makes it feel right at home on Route 66. These days bowling is a hobby at best, something to break up a long family road trip, an activity to do when family visits from out of town, or a relaxing way to spend a weekend night. If you were to ask most people about bowling’s place in the professional-sports world, they might laugh or shrug before readily admitting that bowling is no baseball or football, games with widely accepted greats and unmatched naturals. Read more »

1, March 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Motel Row

When it came to getting sleep along Route 66, motel owners often managed precious little because they were too busy competing to convince travelers that they alone offered the best night’s rest. With each passing year, motorists had more money to spend and more options to choose from on the Mother Road. As a result, motel owners were constantly updating their offerings and advertisements to draw in those dollars. Gone were the days when bed linens and indoor plumbing were enough for most folks. Now people wouldn't dream of sleeping somewhere that didn’t feature a television, air conditioning, or a flashy piece of roadside neon. Read more »

26, January 2017

It's Neon Time!

Neon expert David Hutson has restored multiple signs along Route 66 in Missouri, including the Donut Drive-In and Sunset Motel signs. While making the feature-length documentary Show Me 66: Main Street Through Missouri, we spent some time with Hutson at Neon Time, his shop in St. Charles. There we discussed the role neon played on Route 66 and why neon has become such a big part of the road's cultural legacy. Read more »

13, December 2016

What I Learned Thanks to Show Me 66

After a year of researching, conducting interviews, collecting archival footage, and taking nearly a dozen road trips, the Missouri History Museum released its first feature-length documentary, Show Me 66: Main Street Through Missouri. The film is a wide-angle look at the Missouri people, places, moments, and events that helped make Route 66 the most famous highway in the world—no small task when dealing with 90 years of history and 300 miles of road. Read more »

9, September 2016

Welcome Back, Motel St. Louis!

The Motel St. Louis—or at least its sign—is back home. Fifty years after being removed from its location on Route 66 near Lambert Airport, the motel sign has returned to St. Louis for the exhibit Route 66: Main Street Through St. Louis, open through July 16, 2017. Read more »

29, June 2016

Flipping the Switch on the Chase Hotel Sign

The past hundred years have been exciting ones for St. Louis, and the landmark Chase Hotel has been there for almost every one of them. The 9-story, 500-room Chase was built in 1922 by St. Louis businessman Chase Ulman at the corner of Lindell and Kingshighway, right along Route 66 (although the alignment of the Mother Road changed over time). Seven years later, Sam Koplar built the majestic 28-story Park Plaza Hotel next to the Chase, and the two hotels merged in 1947. Read more »