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Thursday, July 14, 2016

Route 66 in Miami, Oklahoma

Oklahoma Route 66 sign


I wonder if I'll ever get tired of discovering small towns on Route 66. We have driven I-44 between Oklahoma City and Springfield, Missouri, too many times to count, but we've never stopped in Miami, Oklahoma (www.visitmiamiok.com).

We recently resolved that with a day-trip to check it out. Miami, a small town of approximately 13,000, located in the northeast part of the state, off I-44. The old Route 66 goes straight through the downtown area.

I'll digress a minute to tell you that every time we visit a Route 66 town, we meet others doing the same - some from nearby states and some from around the globe.

Vintage Iron Motorcycle Museum
On this day, we first met a couple from Texas. They were driving a beautifully restored pickup. Their blue truck is shown in the photo of the old gas station (https://roadtrippers.com/us/miami-ok/points-of-interest/marathon-oil-service-station?lat=40.80972&lng=-96.67528&z=5). While we took pictures, several others stopped and did likewise.



We saw the Route 66 Vintage Iron Motorcycle Museum. Among other items, this houses the Evel Knievel collection. Unfortunately, we were there on a weekend and they were closed.

Inside of the Coleman Theatre




From there, we stopped at the Coleman Theatre, built as a vaudeville palace in 1929. Both the exterior and the Louis XV interior are beautiful. I loved the mahogany staircase and the gold leaf throughout the lobby. I didn't see the organ but it was built by Wurlitzer in 1928 and is the only one still in its original location. Today, the theatre features multiple productions and events each year.
(http://www.colemantheatre.org)

The Coleman Theatre

Waylan's KuKu


By then, it was time for lunch and we wanted to experience Waylan's KuKu Burgers. Before you even get to the food, you'll find loads of Route 66 memorabilia lining the walls. Tourists and locals filled this fun spot. We stood in line next to a couple from France. This burger joint was on their must-do list. It's open from 10am - 11pm, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Opened in the 1960s, it was part of a Midwestern chain.

Mickey Mantle statue
We found and drove a short distance on the original 9-foot wide Ribbon Road. This road, completed in 1926, was also part of the Ozark Trail Highway.

On the north edge of Miami, we drove through Commerce, the hometown of Mickey Mantle. According to the literature, he was called "the Commerce Comet." The city has erected a 9-foot statue that stands in front of the high school baseball field. (mickeymantlecommerceok).

We've always wanted to drive the complete Route 66 and it's still on our bucket list. But for now, we're chipping away, one stop at a time. Recent posts on other towns include http://www.iwritemyworld.com/2016/05/time-for-more-route-66.html and http://www.iwritemyworld.com/2015/07/get-your-kicks-on-route-66.html.









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