Route 66 in the News

Route 66 Museum Part of Pontiac for Five Years

2009-06-06 20:09:10

PONTIAC, Ill. - So far the Route 66 Museum and Hall of Fame has stood the test of time. In fact, in only five years, it appears the cozy little part of the old Pontiac City Hall building has become quite a place.

As of Friday, the Route 66 Museum and Hall of Fame has been a part of the Pontiac landscape for five years.

“What makes the museum interesting is history,” stated Marilyn Pritchard, museum curator since it opened on June 5, 2004, in a written statement.

Pritchard also noted in the release that 1,300 people registered in the guestbook. The signatures come from all over the world, something the Pontiac city administrator pointed out in a phone conversation.

“Any given day in the summer, especially, we have visitors literally from all over the world,” Bob Karls said. “(The museum) has far exceeded any of our expectations.”

Earlier this week, a group of motorcycle enthusiasts from Germany stopped at the museum. They also visited the Livingston County War Museum.

“No two days are alike,” Pritchard said. “One minute it can be quiet and the next it could be busy.”

Visitors have also come from Australia, Switzerland and Spain, among other countries.

The most recent addition to the museum is the “Wishing Well Motel” sign, located in the city parking lot just outside the south door of the museum. Another recent addition is the Route 66 mural on the south wall of the building. This includes a parking spot for vehicles so museum visitors and Route 66 enthusiasts may take photos in front of the mural.

Because of the museum, the city of Pontiac won the Governor’s Home Town Award in 2005 for economic development, Pritchard noted.

“The museum has been a great asset,” Pritchard said in a phone message. “Route 66 is the instigator.”

Pritchard noted in her release that 300 people attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony on the 15th motor tour. She said the 20th motor tour will take place next weekend (June 12-14). Applications may be picked up at the museum.

~Erich Murphy, Pontiac Daily Leader


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