The Route 66 Association of Illinois

The Route 66 Association of Illinois

Our mission is to preserve, educate, promote and enjoy Route 66 in Illinois



Please join our association's efforts to preserve, promote, educate and enjoy Route 66 in Illinois.

Another Exciting Motor Tour!

Another Exciting Motor Tour!

Our 2014, "Making Memories" Motor Tour, commemorating our 25th Anniversary, was a fun celebration of the Mother Road, with some new and exciting activities and stops for participants to enjoy. Read and see it here!

Illinois Attractions & Towns

Illinois Attractions & Towns

Visit these attractions and towns along Route 66 in Illinois for a nostalgic family fun!

A nostalgic trip through Americana

A nostalgic trip through Americana

Learn about this historic highway and why Route 66 is an American treasure worth preserving.

Here are some helpful and informative sources to help you along your Route 66 journey. We've assembled a collection of web sites and information that are sure to add to your knowledge and appreciation of the Mother Road.

Web Links
Historic Maps
Town Along The Road
Sign up for our Day Tripper email announcements
View the Day Tripper Archives

Preservation is one of our core missions. With our motto of 'we work for food' our members paint, build, repair, clean, and fight to preserve all that is Route 66.

What is Preservation?
Hall of Fame Inductees
Our Museum
Preservation Projects and Announcements

Events Along The Road

Rock & Rods on Route 66 07/14/2017 (All day)

Association Events

Winter Quarterly Meeting January 15, 2017 - 10:00am
Spring Quarterly Meeting April 23, 2017 - 10:00am
Summer Quarterly Meeting July 16, 2017 - 10:00am
Fall Quarterly Meeting October 15, 2017 - 10:00am
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2017 Hall of Fame Nominations Now Being Accepted!

It's that time of year again! Until December 31, 2016, we will be accepting nominations for our Class of 2017 Hall of Fame inductees.

Clay Dooley_0.pngOur Hall of Famers are a prestigious group - we've been honoring a select handful of inductees each year since 1990. Nominations are reviewed and voted upon by our Hall of Fame Committee. Winners will be notified early in 2017 and will be honored at an induction ceremony that will take place on the second weekend June, on the Saturday of our annual Motor Tour weekend.

The Route 66 Association of Illinois Hall of Fame recognizes "those people and places along Route 66 whose blend of hardy individualism and grassroots community spirit gave the road such special character."

To qualify for election to the Hall of Fame, nominees must have made significant contributions to the character or history of the Illinois portion of Route 66 from 1926 to 1977 while it was an official United States highway in the State of Illinois.

Thank you for taking the time to nominate a person or place to the Hall of Fame, that has contributed to the education of others and/or promotion of Rt.66 in Illinois.

General Guidelines for nominating to the Illinois Route 66 Association Hall of Fame:

Anyone may nominate, but self-nomination is not permitted, and those currently on the HoF Committee are not eligible. Induction is considered an honor and there is no absolute right or guarantee of induction. No Association member shall be held liable for not selecting any nominee. All material submitted to the committee shall become property of the Association unless stated otherwise.

Marty Blitstein Awarded President's Award

The following was the presentation by Duke Cartwright to Marty Blitstein presenting
him with one of the President’s Awards 2016.

Presidents award.jpg

October 18, 1998, Bloomington, Illinois, The Country Buffet Restaurant for the
Quarterly Route 66 Association of Illinois meeting and elections. Marty became the
newly elected Treasurer. We (the Association) was flat broke. Not enough money in the bank to send out letters to the membership that we were in trouble and in need of help. I stood up and made a suggestion that we “pass the hat” around for donations to get enough money for postage to send out letters to the membership. We received almost $500 which was enough for postage.

With that Marty started his campaign for the Route 66 Association of Illinois and has been campaigning ever since. For the next 18 years, he has been influentially involved in everything that has to do with Illinois Route 66. Probably the biggest thing would be the relocation of the Hall of Fame from McLean to Pontiac.

The purchasing of the glass display cabinets to show off the artifacts of Route 66. The ordering, and selling of the t-shirts, jackets, patches, cookbooks, and other
items we make a profit on. The yearly tour. He shops for the best location for the banquet, menu for the food, every detail involved including the silverware that we eat with and the napkins we wipe our mouths with, he negotiates for. Marty KNOWS the business and how to get things done.

Living Garage History: Herman’s Garage, Divernon, IL

Keith A. Sculle

Many are the Route 66 travelers that Herman Goddard served at his garage — an estimated sixty to sixty-five percent of his market before Interstate 55 bypassed The Mother Road. His garage is located two blocks west of Route 66 and has displayed Route 66 shields on its facade above the garage doors for eight to ten years years. I interviewed Herman Goddard about his business in 2015 and 2016.

Hermans Garage 1.jpg

National Park Service Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program Cost-share Grants Awarded

Our congratulations to out to Four Illinois Route 66 Preservation Projects are Recipients of the 2016 National Park Service Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program Cost-share Grant Awards.

The National Park Service, Route 66 Corridor Preservation cost-share grant program “provides grant assistance for eligible historic preservation, research, oral history, interpretative, and educational projects. Grants are offered through an annual, competitive grant cycle. Since 2001, 130 projects have been awarded $1.9 million with $3.1 million in cost-share match, totaling $5 million in public-private investment toward the revitalization of the Route 66 corridor.” This year, four of the eight projects that were awarded grants are from Illinois!

Workday: Painting the Bunyon Giant

Saturday – August 27th (rain date 28th) 10:00 AM

Tall Paul.jpgIt’s time to give the big guy in Atlanta, IL. a fresh coat of paint. The last time we did it was six years ago. Tens of thousands of tourists from around the world have their picture taken with Tall Paul. As a result it’s important that this preservation project of ours always looks good, it represents what we are all about.

Reminder, we work for food so there will be a feast of, what else, Hot Dogs. The statue was originally located at Bunyons restaurant in the Cicero/Berwyn area on Route 66. We hope to have some of the Stephens family members attend and help rededicate this iconic member of their family.

Come join the fun and be part of history!

Please call me, John Weiss, to let me know if you will be attending (815) 458-6616.

"Egg Force One" at Steak 'n Egger, McCook, IL

Photo op along Route 66! Come see Terry Carr's ultralight, "Egg Force One," at new Hall of Fame member location, 8408 West Joliet Road, McCook, IL, present home of the Steak n' Egger.

Egg Force One Steak n Egger.jpg

Members: Get Your Name Tags Now!

Proclaim your pride as a member of our Association with a personalized name tag!


Our official members-only name tags are available once again! Get yours for only $10.00 (which includes tax and shipping)!

Mail your request with your name clearly PRINTED as you would like it to appear on your tag along with payment (make check payable to Route 66 Association of Illinois) to:

Route 66 Association of Illinois
110 W Howard
Pontiac, IL 61764

You must be a paid member of our Association for your order to be fulfilled. Available in the Continental U.S. only.

Jim Jones Awarded President's Award

Our thanks to Pontiac, Illinois Tourism Director, Ellie Alexander, for the following story:

Jim Jones, one of the guiding personalities behind the Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum, was recently recognized by the Route 66 Association of Illinois for his years of service to the preservation, promotion, and history of America’s most famous road, Historic Old Route 66. Mr. Jones was honored with the Route 66 Association’s President’s Award for 2016. In making the award, Route 66 Association President, Cathy Stevanovich noted, “Thru thick and thin and all that has happened, Jim has persevered and [he] has been available as much as he can for us.” Jones was involved at the creation of the Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum located in Pontiac, Illinois. Since its opening in 2004, Jones and the Route 66 Museum have welcomed hundreds of thousands of visitors from across the globe. His knowledge of the Mother Road and its history has enlightened many, and his stories of growing up on “America’s Main Street” have entertained all who have been lucky enough to hear them.

Jim & his Miata at the World's Largest Rocking Chair, Fanning, MO

2016 Hall of Fame Nominations Announced!

The Route 66 Association of Illinois Hall of Fame recognizes "those people and places along Route 66 whose blend of hardy individualism and grassroots community spirit gave the road such special character." To that end, each year our Association nominates several of these special people and/or places to induct into our Hall of Fame. Nominees are inducted at our annual Hall of Fame banquet, held the Saturday evening of our Motor Tour Weekend (this year, June 11).

We are proud to announce that our Hall of Fame "Class of 2016" Inductees are:


Route 66's 90th Birthday Celebration in Dwight, IL

Dwight, Illinois ushered in the 90th anniversary of Route 66, with a celebration last Thursday April 21st at the restored Ambler/Becker Texaco gas station. The birthday party, which was the first 90th anniversary celebration in Illinois, included classic cars, hot dogs and cake, basset hounds and an enthusiastic crowd from all around the state. The event included an official presentation by Dwight Village President Jared Anderson, Bill Kelly of the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway and Route 66 preservationist John Weiss.

Dwight 1.jpg

Got Content?

EditorWe welcome your Route 66 news, stories, photos and events for publication in our newsletter or on our web site!

Submit it here

Send us your change of address to:
110 W Howard St
Pontiac, IL, 61764
or use our handy contact form

Learning to use our calendar puts the fun and adventure of Route 66 at your fingertips. It's easy to discover the when, what and where of events along the road.

Here's How!

Historic Maps

Highway GuideWatch Route 66 evolve into The Mother Road  with maps and highway guides from 1917-1992 courtesty of the official Illinois Digital Archives.