It started off as a discussion about the future of Route 66 on Facebook (festival page). Then an off the cuff remark added a new dynamic.
Every year there are attendees from the four corners of the earth at the annual Route 66 International Festival. Why not take that a step further, harness the power and magic of modern technology and make the event truly international in scope?
Why not have a festival on Route 66 and a coinciding festival in Europe with events, festivities, and excitement shared via live feed? Imagine the possibilities! Imagine the long term ramifications for the future of the double six, its preservation, and future development!
Who could have spent at least ten minutes on Route 66 in the past couple of years and not noticed that this old road has a distinctly international appeal? Is it possible to have a mid afternoon dinner at the Mid Point Cafe in Adrian, Texas, or Mr. D'z Route 66 Diner in Kingman, and not hear conversations in at least two or three languages?
So, why not put the international in the international festival? Would you care to share your thoughts, ideas, and suggestions?
Okay, since we are talking about the festival, I would like to provide a bit of information and answer some questions. First, lets address weather concerns, after all it is scheduled for August in Arizona.
The average August temperature in Kingman is about 95 degrees. Hot but not unbearable and evening temperatures of around 75 or eighty degrees is about perfect.
Humidity is usually very low, less than 20%. However, this is also monsoon season which means the odds of an occasional afternoon thunderstorm, and a corresponding rise in humidity, is a very real possibility.
This makes for dramatic photo opportunities. The storms are usually brief but intense, with dramatic temperature drops just before it rains.
To ensure that heat is not an issue, the organizers are planning for a wide array of indoor activities, and activities at Hualapai Mountain Park twelve miles south of Kingman where temperatures under the pines are about ten to twenty degrees cooler. There will also be a number of events taking place on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night, including an expanded version of Chillin' on Beale.
For those who will be cruising the double six between Needles and Seligman to take in the sites and enjoy special events, you will experience dramatic temperature variations. Day time temperatures along the Colorado River often top 110 degrees, and sometimes are even ten degrees warmer.
Meanwhile, in Seligman it is usually around 90 degrees. Of course there is also the Grand Canyon Caverns.
Now, is it to early to ask who will be attending as an author, artist, collector, or representative of a community or Route 66 Association? My reason for asking is two fold.
First, organizers are working to determine if one building on Beale Street will be sufficient. The second reason is for promotional purposes. If they know you are coming, they can ensure a plug or two for you.
Next, there is the need to discuss the possibility of workshops and presentations. Plans are being developed for short presentations about alternative energy vehicles of the past, present,and future, and related infrastructure (speakers are needed). Would there be interest in workshops or presentations about the NPS Route 66 Corridor Preservation grants, bicycling Route 66, restoring neon,acquiring historic properties,etc.? If so, who would like to volunteer to speak or host a workshop?
The list of participating film makers for the film festival aspect is growing. Do you have a film to showcase? Would you like the opportunity to purchase tickets on line?
The auto show aspect and cruise nights (as in plural)is open to anything with wheels. However, there is an interest in seeing an array of alternative energy vehicles representing the past, present, and future. Organizers are also looking for participation from travel trailer enthusiasts, as well as bicyclists.
Ideally, there would also be people available to talk on these topics. So, may I ask for input as well as advice? May I also ask who is planning on attending, and who might be interested in making a presentation?
Okay, did I forget anything?