Our annual gathering of authors, artists, associations & collectors affiliated with Route 66 was once again an important part of the festival. These folks offered interesting displays of memorabilia, information about their products and services and items for sale.

2017 Exhibitors & Vendors

Jim Ross, Arcadia, OK
photo of jim ross holding a camera outdoorsJim Ross is an accomplished writer, photographer, and leading authority on the highway's history and its multitude of pathways. He is the author or co-author of eight books, including "Oklahoma Route 66," "Route 66 Sightings," and "Roadside U.S.A.," as well as co-creator of the best-selling "Route 66 Map Series." Ross is also an Oklahoma Route 66 Hall of Fame inductee, a recipient of the Oklahoma Historical Society's Citation of Merit, and has been awarded both the John Steinbeck and Will Rogers Awards for historic preservation. His newest book is, "Route 66 Crossings: Historic Bridges of the Mother Road," published by the University of Oklahoma Press this year.
Shellee Graham, Arcadia, OK
photo of shellee graham with a soft drink at a tablePhotographer and Route 66 advocate Shellee Graham is the author or co-author of four books – "Return to Route 66," "Tales from the Coral Court," "Roadside U.S.A.," and "Route 66 Sightings." Her photographs and drawings have appeared in regional, national, and international shows, and for more than a decade her traveling Route 66 photo exhibition appeared in venues all over the U.S. In 2004, she co-produced the film, "Built for Speed: The Coral Court Motel," an award-winning documentary that chronicles the rise and fall of the Mother Road's most legendary landmark. Her awards include the Wallis Award for Route 66 Sightings and the John Steinbeck Award for historic preservation. During the week she works as a numismatic photographer in Oklahoma City, commuting there from her home on Route 66 in Arcadia.
Susan Croce Kelly, Gravois Mills, MO
head and shoulders shot of susan croce kelly smiling bigSusan Croce Kelly has been a newspaper reporter in Springfield and St. Louis, an award-winning columnist in Texas, public relations executive in St. Louis and Chicago, worked in Belgium and England, was founder and publisher of “Ozarks Magazine,” and has been president of her own corporate writing business for the past 20 years. She is also the author of two award-winning books about the early days of US Highway 66, and was the recipient of Springfield’s John T. Woodruff Award in 1915. Her book, Father of Route 66, won the Missouri Writer’s Guild Walter Williams award, the Oklahoma Writers Federation Inc. Best Book Award, and was a finalist in the Oklahoma Book Awards.

Kelly and her husband Joel Kirkpatrick have three grown children and two perfect grandchildren. They live in Missouri on Mill Creek Cove, just off the Gravois arm of Lake of the Ozarks. (susancrocekelly@gmail.com)

Cheryl Eichar Jett, Edwardsville, IL
head shot of cheryl eichar jett wearing a fashion scarfCheryl Eichar Jett is the author of six books published by Arcadia Publishing and is a regular contributor to several regional publications, including Show Me Route 66, the quarterly publication of the Route 66 Association of Missouri. She is currently working on a book about women on historic Route 66 and is presenting programs and producing magazine articles based on her research in advance of the book's publication. She blogs about her travels and research at www.route66chick.com. Cheryl is also an award-winning writer of short fiction.

Cheryl holds undergraduate and master's degrees in history from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. She lives in Edwardsville, Illinois, and currently serves on the board of directors of Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway and as President of the (Illinois Route 66) Blue Carpet Corridor Coalition.

Anne M Slanina, PH.D., Harrisville, PA
head and shoulders shot of anne slanina with a bookshelf of books behind herAuthor Anne M. Slanina, Ph.D., is a professor of elementary/early childhood education at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania, where she specializes in early childhood literacy development and Social Studies education. As a Route 66 enthusiast who has been traveling The Mother Road annually for the past 10 years, she encourages parents to explore the beautiful United States of America with their children. Road trips on historic highways, like Route 66, help bring families closer together and expose children to the many wonders the nation's countrysides have to offer. Her "Adventures of Annie Mouse" series include, among others, the picture book: "Annie Mouse's Route 66 Adventure: A Photo Journal," and a chapter book: "Annie Mouse's Route 66 Family Vacation." She is currently working on a third Route 66 book for children. You can learn more about Anne and her books at www.anniemousebooks.com .
Thomas A. Peters, Springfield, MO
candid outdoor headshot of tom petersTom Peters serves as the Dean of Library Services at Missouri State University in Springfield. He was born and raised in Fort Dodge, Iowa. His undergraduate degree (Philosophy and English) is from Grinnell College, and his two master’s degrees are from the University of Iowa (Library Science) and the University of Missouri-Kansas City (English). For almost three decades, he has worked as an academic librarian in Missouri, Illinois, and Minnesota. Since 2012, he has lived in and loved the Missouri Ozarks. In 2016 Peters released “John T. Woodruff of Springfield, Missouri, in the Ozarks: An Encyclopedic Biography.” The volume documents Woodruff's many achievements, amazing both for their breadth and impact.

Born into poverty in the rural Missouri Ozarks shortly after the end of the Civil War, John T. Woodruff (1868-1949) became the greatest promoter of civic and regional development in the history of Springfield, Missouri. Schools, colleges, hospitals, hotels, and resorts all owed their existence and location to Woodruff’s clear vision and indefatigable efforts. The Woodruff Building and the Kentwood Arms Hotel are two of his outstanding architectural achievements. Woodruff brought the Frisco West Maintenance and Repair Shops to Springfield, and he helped found and build the entire town of Camdenton near the Lake of the Ozarks. For decades Woodruff promoted and built good roads in the Missouri Ozarks, and served two terms as the first president of the U.S. 66 Highway Association.

Bill Hart, St. Louis, MO
outdoor headshot of bill hart against a red brick wallBill Hart is a fifth generation Missourian, having grown up in Perry County in Southeast Missouri where his great-great grandfather settled in 1819. His interest in small town and roadside Missouri was fostered by his work for the past several years with the Missouri Alliance for Historic Preservation, where he currently serves as Executive Director. Bill holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Historic Preservation from Southeast Missouri State University, where he was inducted into Phi Alpha Theta, the National History Honor Society. He did his graduate work in Architectural History at the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia, where he was awarded the Bronze Medal from the Tau Sigma Delta Honor Society in Architecture and Allied Arts. Mr. Hart is a member of the Route 66 Association of Missouri and is working with others on Route 66 nationwide to establish the Route as a National Historic Trail.

Bill has traveled the roads of Missouri in every one of its 114 counties. Universally he noted an emptying out of our small towns for a variety of reasons, including the decline of private farming, loss of jobs to international markets, loss of river and rail traffic, and the general suburbanization of our State. The exodus of citizens from small towns has left many significant historic buildings without residents. At the same time, he noted that the towns that capitalized on their history reaped the benefits of heritage tourism. Bill’s book, Historic Missouri Roadsides, published in 2015 by Reedy Press, features six history tours of Missouri on two-lane highways. A brief history of each town is presented along with photographs from the author’s collection. Like a travel guide, the book lists places to eat, visit and stay but include only businesses owned locally, supporting an interest in local history and intended to bolster tourism.

David Wickline, Westerville, OH
candid head shot of david wickline with a large smileDavid Wickline is a Route 66 Author, Historian and Route 66 Tour Guide. With an unstoppable interest in the history, promotion and preservation of historic Route 66 for our future generations, David has traveled the full length of Route 66 16 times and has made 10 partial trips.

Wickline salvaged the historic neon sign from the 66 Courts Motel in Groom, Texas in 2007, and he also built scale models of both the Cadillac Ranch and the Twin Arrows and is currently working on a scale model of the 66 Courts Motel, Magnolia Station and Garage from Groom, Texas.

David self-published his two volume, “IMAGES of 66” book set and is currently authoring the “NEW RIDING ROUTE 66” Self-Guided, Two-Week Tour Book (2017) for motorcycles or automobiles traveling Route 66. He is also executor and tour guide of three RIDING ROUTE 66 Motorcycle Tours. David has also owned the ROADHOUSE 66 Bar & Grille in Columbus, Ohio since 2009.

Mr. Wickline’s future plans include resurrecting the 66 Courts Motel and 1950’s Magnolia Station and Garage from Groom, Texas … relocating the historic complex along Route 66 to just north of Kingman, Arizona. Plans are for the art-deco motel building to house both Route 66 and American Indian museums, with the Magnolia Gas Station and Garage serving as a gift shop and greeting place for Route 66 travelers from around the globe.

Lastly, David has plans to photograph and document all of the current Route 66 in the very near future and create, design and self-publish an “IMAGES of 66, Volume 3.” The IMAGES of 66 Book Series will be a living record of what was located along old historic Route 66 for our future generations to seek out and enjoy.

Bob "Croc" Lile, Amarillo, TX
head shot of bob lile wearing a black route 66 polo shirtBob “Crocodile” Lile and Cheryl O'Quinn have been traveling and promoting Historic Route 66 for twenty years. "Croc" owns and operates Lile Art Gallery on Route 66 in Amarillo, Texas, where he creates one of a kind mosaic images and jewelry made with paint chips from the cars at world famous Cadillac Ranch. He is also a Route 66 Tour Guide for Gilligans Route 66 Tours out of New Zealand.

Judy Walker, Springfield, MO
outdoor photo of judy walker holding her cameraJudy Walker has been a Route 66 roadie for several years and loves to bring Route 66 to people through her photography. Judy aspires to excite others about Route 66 in hopes they will travel the route too! Please visit Judy at her booth at the festival-she'd love to meet you and share Route 66 stories.

Judy's RJ's Route 66 is a local business with an online store. Walker's unique, distinctive shirts and metal signs are made from photos taken by her on Route 66! One of the specialty items RJ's Route 66 sells is Route 66 wine corks, also made in the USA. All items carried by RJ's Route 66 are proudly made in the USA!

Giesla Hoelscher, St. Paul, MN
outdoor photo of giesla hoelscher leaning against a red brick wallGiesla Hoelscher is a digital collage artist and graphic designer from Saint Paul, Minnesota. After her Route 66 honeymoon trip in 2015, she learned that the Mother Road is more than just a bucket list trip, it's a community of people from all over the globe who connect with each other around their shared passion for the road. Inspired by the work that needs to be done to preserve the Mother Road for future generations, she created Explore and Preserve as a way to lend a hand. Proceeds from all products sold go to raise funds for preservation, restoration, and recovery efforts along Route 66.
Ken Turmel, Oklahoma City, OK
head shot of ken turmel wearing a cowboy hatKEN "The Landrunner" TURMEL was born on Route 66 (Santa Monica Blvd.) and has been traveling along the Mother Road each and every year to date since 1959. He is the creator of the classic "Route 66 and More" historical documentation masterpiece which was hand carried during a two year period, from town to town and into each post office along the entire length of Route 66 from Chicago to Los Angeles. www.Route66Artwork.com

Ken's ambitious activities include being a Route 66 Roadie, Motorcycle/Auto/Coach Bus Tour Guide, Adventurer, Historian, Photographer, Writer, Artist, Musician and more.

Jo Ann Kargus (Whitesitt Kargus Studio), Imperial, MO
outdoor photo of jo ann kargus on a lush, grassy yardSt. Louis illustrator Jo Ann Kargus' first adult coloring book “St. Louis Splendor” showed off the wonders of the Gateway City — with 50 intricately illustrated landmarks. It sold out in 6 weeks and went into a second printing.

Her second book, “Route 66 Splendor”, a new release from Reedy Press, has 50 more drawings along the historic route from its origin in Chicago all the way to Santa Monica.

Kargus, an architectural illustrator of 34 years, grew up in St. Louis County and now lives in Imperial, Missouri.

“Route 66 Splendor” is available at St. Louis shops and along The Mother Road as well as online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Visit Reedy Press' website for more info. To view other art and for contact info, please visit Jo Ann’s website.

Jerry McClanahan, Chandler, OK
photo of jerry mcclanahan sitting in front of his artNoted Route 66 author, artist and historian, Jerry McClanahan has been mapping Route 66 since his family vacations during the 1960s, when he sat in the back seat of the family Ford, trying to draw his own crude map of the road. Born in Oklahoma in 1957, Jerry's family moved out to sunny Southern California in 1959 (sadly, they did NOT take Route 66). Then there followed a decade of wonderful journeys down the Mother Road, from California thru Oklahoma City. These back seat travels left an indelible mark on him, one that eventually came to color the whole fabric of his creativity. Jerry rediscovered Route 66 in 1981, when he and his father made a trip out west, stopping at everything this time. Since then, every year has found Jerry making numerous expeditions along the route, mapping, photographing and collecting information. In the early 1990s, Jerry began painting and writing about the Mother Road full time, enjoying a long stint as staff artist and a staff writer for Route 66 Magazine before moving on to write for the Federation News and American Road (where he is a department editor). In 1994, he collaborated with OK 66 expert Jim Ross on the best-selling Route 66 Map Series (which features his unofficial Route 66 mascot, Rootie), as well as the acclaimed Bones of the Old Road video (with Kathy Anderson). Jerry s photographs have appeared in numerous books and periodicals, while his paintings of old cars on Route 66 hang in private collections across the country and overseas. In 2008, Jerry moved to Chandler, Oklahoma, where he welcomes visitors to his art gallery, just a stone's throw off Route 66.
Jim Carr, Springfield, MO
photo of jim carr showing off two metal art piecesJim Carr is a metal artist who designs and creates one of a kind, copper, brass, aluminum, and steel pieces of handcrafted, functional art with emphasis on Route 66 items. All of Carr’s copper work is custom hammered, raised, and chased by hand, resulting in a one of a kind, quality piece of art that will last for generations. Jim sees his work being equally at home as beautiful, functional pieces or as sculptures to be viewed.

Mike & Sharon Ward, Mesa, AZ (maps, postcards)
photo of mike and sharon ward sporting brightly colored route 66 themed shirts Mike and Sharon Ward both grew up in Southern Illinois in the towns of Marion and Energy. They never met until after Mike left to join the Air Force in 1966. They married in 1969 and spent the next 20 years traveling and going to where the Air Force said to go, and sometimes travel took them down Route 66. Retirement from the Air Force in 1989 and settling down in Mesa, Arizona meant a change in jobs but it didn’t change their interest in travel. They reconnected with Route 66 in the early 1990s and for the past 20+ years have traveled and supported Route 66 in many ways. Mike has collected old road maps most of his life and added a Route 66 postcard collecting hobby about 15 years ago. Those two hobbies have been combined into an interesting and visual display which has been shown at many Route 66 festivals and gatherings. They both enjoy talking to others about Route 66 and sharing their passion for the road.
Steve Rider, Albany, NY
photo of steve rider sitting in a vintage convertibleSteve Rider, a retired teacher from Albany, NY, has been cruising Route 66 and collecting memorabilia since the mid-1990s. Steve always displays a variety of vintage items that frequently includes road signs, pennants, maps, postcards, brochures, and other unusual items.
Mark Potter, Lawton, OK (memorabilia)
outdoor portrait of mark potter in a dark suitMark Potter is a news reporter currently with the Lawton Constitution in Lawton, Oklahoma. He has traveled Route 66 and collected Route 66 memorabilia for many years. He is also very knowledgeable in Route 66 history.

Route 66 Association of Missouri
route 66 association of missouriThe Route 66 Association of Missouri is a nonprofit organization established to preserve, promote, and develop Historic Route 66 (The Main Street of America) in the "Show-Me" State. Originating from the efforts of dedicated volunteers who realized Historic 66 in Missouri deserved recognition and preservation, the Association became a reality in early 1990 when it began officially with more charter members than any other state Route 66 Association. Today, Association members number 1,100 and reside in over 40 states plus internationally.

After several years of work by very dedicated Association members in partnership with the Missouri Department of Transportation, and after many public meetings in communities along Route 66, the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission voted on Nov. 9, 2005, to designate Missouri Historic Route 66 as a Missouri State Byway. The Byway dedication took place May 5, 2006.

Kansas Historic Route 66 Association
black and white graphic of kansas u s 66 shield signPromoting, preserving and protecting the 13.2 miles of Route 66 in Kansas.
Oklahoma Route 66 Association
black and white route 66 shield sign with the words oklahoma association around itThe Oklahoma Route 66 Association is a not-for-profit organization made up of volunteers who are dedicated to the promotion and preservation of Route 66. The Association serves as the non-governmental body that coordinates the statewide economic development, enhancement, improvement, preservation, and recognition of U.S. Route 66 in Oklahoma. In keeping with our mandate, we generate whatever finances and pressures we can to save Route 66 landmarks from decay or destruction.
Old Route 66 Association of Texas
graphic reading: texas route 66The Old Route 66 Association of Texas is comprised of "Roadies" dedicated to making your travel on Route 66 through the great state of Texas the best experience possible.

The Association is made up of local communities, businesses and individuals who want to provide the traveler with up-to-date information and activities you will not want to miss.

Missouri State University Libraries, Springfield, MO
photo: steps leading to the entrance of a white concrete building with a modern art sculpture of metalThe Duane G. Meyer Library is Missouri State University's main library. The library is home to the Route 66 Oral History Collection and archives. This digital collection includes a selection of oral histories collected by the Route 66 Association of Missouri and the Meyer Library on the history of U.S. Route 66, including businesses, economic changes, personalities and noteworthy experiences. Various initiatives of the MSU Libraries related to Route 66 will be displayed, including the various oral history projects.
Pulaski County Route 66 Preservation and Pulaski County Tourism Bureau & Visitors Center, St. Robert, MO
pulaski county missouri u s a, a welcome place in america's heartlandThe Pulaski County Tourism Bureau & Visitors Center is organized for the sole purpose of promotion of tourism and the comprehensive marketing of our destination. Pulaski County Tourism Bureau leads Pulaski County, Missouri to be recognized as a welcoming destination in the heart of America. Knowledgeable personnel will help you find all the information you need to plan your vacation, here in the heart of the Ozarks. They freely give directions and information on Route 66 through Pulaski County, as well as throughout the State of Missouri. Learn about a big topic at the center by seeing plans and facts for development of a vintage Route 66 Neon Park. Donations are being accepted. Being in the heart of the Ozarks means being in the center of activity. You are urged to come on down to Pulaski County, USA, located in America’s Heartland!
Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway (Bill Kelly & Geoff Ladd) Springfield, IL
graphic of route 66 shield and a wide v shape, where the mother road begins Where the Mother Road Begins: The most famous road in the world first came into being in 1926 as part of the new numbered highway system, and Chicago is where Route 66 begins. The United States Department of Transportation has designated certain US roads as National Scenic Byways because of their special significance to the American people. Route 66 in Illinois received that recognition in 2005. Our non-profit organization has the responsibility for the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway, and it is our mission to "...enhance and promote economic opportunities for each Illinois Route 66 community by preserving Illinois Route 66 Heritage and by sustaining and increasing heritage and cultural tourism."

Explore Route 66 one mile at a time. Route 66 defined a remarkable era in our nation's history and lives on today in Illinois Route 66's many roadside attractions, museums, restaurants and the shining ribbon of blacktop we call the Mother Road.

Missouri Division of Tourism, Conway I-44 Route 66 Welcome Centers - East & West, Conway, MO
photo of roadside welcome center with brightly colored playgroundTwo welcome centers at Conway, Missouri, offer a nice place to take a break from driving Route 66. The centers are located on I-44 at mile marker 111, east and west, between Lebanon and Marshfield. Inside the centers, visitors can enjoy a classic Route 66 motif and access staffers who provide information about Missouri Route 66, the immediate area, the entire Show-Me State and its myriad attractions.

The centers offer clean restrooms, vending machines for those who need a quick snack or beverage, travel brochures and maps, playground areas, spacious picnic sites, and areas to walk pets.

Joplin Convention & Visitors Bureau, Joplin, MO
teal and black graphic of route 66 sheild sign and a star with the words, joplin missouriThe Joplin Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) is a not for profit organization that serves as the area's destination expert. Joplin is a Route 66 Host Community, and the CVB supports Route 66 with information, events, materials and many complimentary services to roadies as they enjoy traveling the Mother Road through the area.

Event Details

Aug. 10

Authors, Artists, Collectors & Associations
Friday | 12 - 4 PM

Aug. 11

Authors, Artists, Collectors & Associations
Saturday | 10 AM - 4 PM

Participant/Vendor Info

We'd love to have you be a part of this fun event in 2018. You will need a Group Sales Event license from the City of Springfield if you are selling a service, face-painting, or merchandise. The minimum, one-month version is only $5!

More information, including additional length terms and pricing, is included on the Group Sales Event application.