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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

101 Places to See Before You're 12 - An Endangered Place

An Endangered Place

We flew right past our 60th of the 101 Places, and we're here at #64.  That's a lot of sightseeing and it has been a ton of fun!

When we read the section on Endangered Places in the book, I didn't really have any specific places in mind.  The book had a number of great suggestions including:  grain elevators (endangered?  not in Indiana!), prairie churches, neighborhoods, landmarks, historical buildings, and shared the website www.nationaltrust.org for more ideas.  There we found Route 66 - and decided to check it out.

My first misconception - that the road still exists in its entirety.  I thought it would be awesome to do a Route 66 road trip with the boys one day.  But much of Route 66 is now interstate and highway, apparently some is no longer travel-able.

The second misconception - I had NO idea it ended in Chicago!  It seemed like an "out west" sort of experience only.  We're only a few hours from it!  Strange.

But David knew where it was because he knew the lyrics to the classic song (from 1946 - wow!) "(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66", listing off cities we went through on this trip, including Kingman, AZ, Barstow and San Bernadino, CA.

So as we started into Arizona I was excited to do a little research and realize we were going to spend an hour plus on Route 66 to get to the Grand Canyon!  Then David told me we'd already been on Route 66 a couple of times on the trip in CA and we'd seen the signs.  I HAD NO IDEA!

The boys are familiar with Route 66 because of the Disney movie Cars.  While Radiator Springs doesn't exist, we did have fun while we were traveling along in Arizona on that endangered old piece of Americana.

Doesn't look that different from much of what we had seen in Arizona.
Beautiful, dry, and quiet.

Some cool names did pop up though

Not Radiator Springs, but close.

Long abandoned gas station

Pretty countryside

Lots of little towns just off

And yes, that is snow.
There's no accounting for it.  It was 1:00 p.m. and 68 degrees.  In Arizona.  But the snow was still there.

From the Book:
#79 - An Endangered Place
You've heard of endangered species, right?  They are animals so few in number that their entire species might cease to exist.  Well, animals aren't the only things that can disappear - places can, too.  Historic buildings, landmarks, and even whole neighborhoods or geographic areas face destruction from neglect, development, and environmental factors.  And when they do, a little bit of our history and culture disappears with them.  Nothing lasts forever, but some places are so special that they deserve to be saved.  Visit an endangered place, and imagine what it would be like if your kids never got to see it.  Then see what you can do to help.

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