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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 »

9, February 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Donut Drive-In & Ted Drewes

For Route 66 fans, there's no better place on a mild spring night than Chippewa Street. On a short section near St. Louis's city limits, two Route 66 legends sit just blocks apart. Their neon signs glow in the night, calling to travelers and lighting up the neighborhood. For more than half a century, they’ve tantalized Mother Road drivers with a truly challenging question: Should I stop for custard, or should I stop for a donut? Read more »

20, January 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Maplewood Business District

For anyone trying to drive Route 66 through St. Louis, the path of the world’s most famous highway isn’t so clear. You could take Watson Road, known as Historic 66, but not the road’s original path. You could get on Lindbergh Boulevard, which was sometimes the main Route 66, sometimes 66 Bypass, and sometimes not a part of Route 66 at all. You could cross five Mississippi River bridges, drive on nearly a dozen major St. Louis streets, and chase various alignments—all without ever leaving the Mother Road. How can this be? In contrast to small towns where Route 66 was often the one and only “main street,” Route 66 shifted, twisted, and turned through big cities such as St. Louis. Read more »

30, December 2016

66 Through St. Louis: Chase Park Plaza

When looking at a map of Route 66 through St. Louis, it seems like half the city’s major streets carried an alignment of Route 66 at one time or another. Travelers leaving downtown St. Louis via the road's first alignment along Lindell Boulevard drove past the crowning jewels of the Central West End: the enormous Chase and Park Plaza hotels. Read more »

21, December 2016

66 Through St. Louis: City Hall

Route 66 motorists who picked the City 66 alignment of the Mother Road wound up in the heart of St. Louis. When they pulled into downtown, they were greeted by a pink and orange, spire-covered structure seemingly dropped straight out of belle époque Paris. But while they snapped pictures and read about St. Louis City Hall in their tourist brochures, they probably never realized the headache involved in getting it built! Read more »

19, August 2016

66 Through St. Louis: Chain of Rocks Bridge

St. Louis was the largest city on Route 66 between its ends in Chicago and Los Angeles, and traveling the highway through it was a different experience than traveling the highway through smaller towns and cities. St. Louis had endless choices, beginning with which Route 66 to take. The highway split into different paths through and around the city, and five different Mississippi River bridges would carry it at various times. The Chain of Rocks Bridge is easily the most well known of the five. It carried Route 66 from 1936 to 1955 and the 66 Bypass from 1955 to 1965. Read more »