Registration has opened for the second National Route 66 Motor Tour, scheduled this year to begin October 4 in Joliet, Illinois, and to end 14 days later at the Santa Monica Pier on the shores of the Pacific Ocean.
Although the event has a schedule, the $66 registration fee allows you to join the drive for however long you want — from a single day to the entire trip, or any portion along the way. (Last year, we did a delightful day and a half of the drive as it crossed northern Arizona.)
The National Route 66 Motor Tour is organized by Craig Parrish, who for many years has run a multi-day tour along Old U.S. 27 in Michigan. That event often draws hundreds of cars for a drive up the middle of the Michigan mitten.
Parrish has driven the Mother Road across the western U.S. multiple times and enlists the help of local Route 66 experts along the way.
The inaugural national tour was held last fall. Participants can drive classic or contemporary cars, and travel averages around 200 miles a day with multiple stops for sightseeing and for car shows in communities along the route each evening.
A drivers meeting is held each morning, reviewing sightseeing opportunities, lunch stops, route details, etc. Participants make their own lodging reservations, but Parrish has secured discounted rates.
The tour is held in October, well after the usual tourist season and after the western in the southwest starts to cool from triple-digit summer temperatures.
And, Parrish said, “For those of us in the Midwest, it’s a last hurrah before putting our cars away for the winter.”
Money raised from the event is donated to local Route 66 restoration projects, and several more cities have signed on to be tour-stop hosts for 2015.
For more information, visit the tour website.