The Mother Road: Route 66

Escaping the Verde Valley heat and smoke  with a drive up Oak Creek Canyon to Flagstaff. A walk about downtown, a pause  to photograph the train, then delicious lunch at Street Side Saigon,

Setting off back to cross the tracks to downtown in search of pie……..and suddenly the gift of discovering this absolutely stunning mural.

Such a joy to photograph and share with you, and perfect for this weeks WordPress  Photo Theme of “Delta: ”   ‘This week’s photo challenge, share a picture that symbolizes transitions, change, and the passing of time.’

This is what the artists Margaret Dewar and R.E. Wall have to say about their magnificent work Route 66.

The Mother Road lived for about 60 years in its full glory. We were able to put together a chronological storyboard that offers a little piece of the spirit of each of the ages in ten year increments, from 1926 – 1985. Route 66 books and even modern travelers tell us that it was a virtual microcosm of American culture all comprised into one great road stretching from Chicago to L.A.The Phoenix Avenue Route 66 mural is located 1 block from the Route 66 that exists today. The Phoenix Avenue corridor of the mural was the main drag of Route 66 from 1926 to 1934, but was decommissioned and re-routed a block away and north of the tracks. Many of the businesses that started up here, included the Downtowner, Sierra Vista, and the Du Beau Hostel, which was the first motor lodge in the country can still be found along Phoenix Avenue. They were disappointed to have lost the road and thus allowed to erect giant neon sign towers that promoted their businesses and could be seen from the new Route 66. Today, the City of Flagstaff is showing an interest in spotlighting the former role of Phoenix Avenue in Flagstaff history.

I encourage you to visit The Mural Mice at their  their website for a listing of where their other public murals are located, and if opportunity arrives to see one in person, definitely do. The slideshow below contains lots more of the photos I so happily took on an exceptional  summer day in Flagstaff, Arizona. An excellent and safe month of July  to each and every one.

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