Lions Club rolls out the good times for September 25th car show…

4th Annual Car Show promises big weekend…

Bob Mullen's Coca-cola jeep is an eye-catcher.

Classic cars, motorcycles,  a drive-in, BBQ: it’s an all-American experience, and the Lions Club hopes Cubans and out-of-town visitors will come out for this special event on Saturday, September 25.

Many of the participants for the car show will be filling area motels before the Saturday event, and the streets will be alive with their classic rides. Saturday, the partiipants will be setting up on Buchanan  and surrounding streets, just off Route 66 in the uptown historic district. Car registration is from 8:00 am to noon, and judging begins at 12:30.

Who doesn't like to look at classic cars and remember the good old days.

A Cobra Mustang Jet Powered Funny Car should be a draw for car show visitors.

The Lions will be having their usual tasty BBQ, and other vendors will be selling crafts, car-related products, and other items of interest. Artist  and photographer David Judd has been to Cuba and will be selling some of his Cuba-related work as well as other pieces. The Arts Council will serve up some tasty treats of ice cream and root beer floats.

Vendors add to the mix of activities during the Car Show.

But the stars, of course, will be the cars, trucks, and motorcycles.

Saturday evening at the Highway 19 Drive-In there will be a movie for the out-of-town visitors and Cuba residents.  The drive in is one of the oldest and longest running drive ins in Missouri. The Classic rides will be parked together.

Darlene and Bob Mullen of the Lions Club will welcome the Car Show registrants to Bob’s Gasoline Alley for breakfast (not open for the public) on Sunday. Bob’s Gasoline Alley is one of the largest collections of Historic Route 66 gasoline memorabilia in the Midwest.  It includes metal signs, neon, gas pumps, pedal cars,  life-sized figures, and much more. It is privately-owned and not open to the general public.

Purple makes a statement.

The Fanning US 66 Outpost will be hosting their annual Iron Buck Archery Tournament on Saturday, September 25, so Cuba should be hopping that weekend. We imagine that many of  the car show participants will be taking photos with the Outpost’s World’s Largest Rocking Chair over the weekend.

For information on the Car Show or Vendor information, contact Bob or Darlene Mullen (Cuba Lions Club) P.O. Box 263 Cuba, MO 65453  573-885-3637

For information about Cuba, MO lodging, businesses, or attractions, visit Or visit the Visitor Center at the I-44 Overpass-Exit 208.

For information on Viva Cuba’s murals, visit their website or blog.

For information on Outpost Archery Tournament go here.

New beautification project in Cuba, Missouri…

Wallace House grounds getting new look and upgrade…

Erik Lowes and one of his employees are upgrading the landscaping at Wallace House.

Saturday found a new beautification project underway in the historic uptown district. Erik Lowes of Lowes Landscaping and his helper were busy digging out old plants and  planting new. The owners of the 18oos Wallace House have commissioned Lowes to upgrade the historic home’s landscaping, create a seating area, and enhance the area under the nearby Truman Mural.

There will be a seating area among the roses and a row of plants underneath the mural.

The work was just starting along Route 66 on Saturday, and we will let you know how it progresses. Wallace House has a rich history and can be rented for private events. It is owned by three couples, and we salute their efforts to preserve and enhance this local treasure.

We will keep you posted on this beautification project and the history of Wallace House.

Saturday morning, August 21 Tourism & Visitors in the Mural City…

The streets of Cuba, MO…

The Cardinals fan from St. James and his uncle from Rolla were photographing the murals.

While out for an exercise  session, I noticed a lot of activity in the Uptown Historic section of Cuba, so I did what I call annoying the tourists by stopping to see if they have a mural brochure and asking them where they are from. If I have a camera tucked in my pocket as I did today, I ask if I can take their photo for the blog or our Facebook page.

The visitors above had been walking around Cuba with a tripod setting up shots of the murals. The nephew from St. James was showing his uncle from Rolla how to use some of the equipment and take photos. They were using a mural brochure to get around and had already talked to Viva Cuba member Peggy Holland and her husband Ken. I talked to them for awhile and used their camera to take their picture so that they would have a photo of themselves.

The next young man below was a Japanese tourist traveling alone. He had come to New York and then gone to Chicago to rent a motorcycle and was traveling Route 66 to Santa Monica. He was photographing the Truman mural when I saw him and gave him a brochure, which I had gotten at Hayes Shoe Store as I passed by there.

Japanese Tourist

This Japanese tourist had just finished photographing the Harry Truman Mural. He was traveling Route 66.

The next two gentleman were also Japanese tourists on motorcycles who had started their Route 66 tour in California.  They were at the Apple/Barrels mural, and I used each of their cameras to take their photo and took one of my own. I gave them a brochure, and they were headed to the Civil War murals. They didn’t speak much English, and I didn’t speak Japanese, so it was sayronara for us, but it was a friendly encounter.

These Japanese tourists were photographing the Apple Mural.

The next group intercepted me by the History Museum and asked if I would take their photo using their cameras. They were four friends from Union, Missouri who had gone to high school together 40 years ago. They were on a road trip to Cuba and had toured the murals and were getting ready to visit the History Museum. They were having a good time and after some photos, I invited them back to Cuba for Cuba Fest, and they went in to the museum.

These old high school friends from Union, MO were having a field trip to Cuba.

I finished my run back to to get my car and thought what an interesting town we live in, that a morning exercise session can result in such diverse experiences.


For more about Viva Cuba…

To read and watch more about Cuba…

Classic Cars take their spot in Cuba, Missouri’s public art offerings…

Artist Ray Harvey used his vintage widelux camera for this panoramic photo of his mural.

Artist Ray Harvey used his vintage widelux camera for this panoramic photo. The camera gives the mural the "curved" effect. Copyright Ray Harvey.

Cuba, MO is known as Rt. 66 Mural City. Originally, the designation was the result of Viva Cuba’s 12 outdoor murals. But a consequence of the original mural program is that local businesses have embraced the idea of art, and other examples of public art have spread throughout Cuba.

The latest example is artist Ray Harvey’s mural Classic Road Show at the Midwest Petroleum’s Travel Plaza at the I-44 overpass. The indoor mural stretches above the lobby between the restaurant and convenience store. Harvey has taken many of the classic autos that people might associate with Rt. 66 and featured them in the colorful mural, which spans 50 feet above the lobby.

Here are a few scenes from the  mural’s creation.

The project started with sketch of the mural.

The project started with sketch of the mural.

Using the sketch as a guide, Harvey made an outline of the mural on the painting surface. Normally, he can project the outlines on the surface, but the well-lit lobby prevented that.

Using the sketch as a guide, Harvey made an outline of the mural on the painting surface. Normally, he can project the outlines on the surface, but the well-lit lobby prevented that. Harvey did his painting standing on the Travel Plaza's lift.

At the midpoint of painting, Harvey painted the Rt. 66 shield on the mural. He took this photo himself--a tricky shot.

At the midpoint of painting, Harvey painted the Rt. 66 shield on the mural. He took this photo himself--a tricky shot.

The vibrant car mural draws many appreciative looks from passersby and the truckers' section of the nearby restaurant.

The vibrant car mural draws many appreciative looks from passersby and the truckers' section of the nearby restaurant.

Congratulations to artist Ray Harvey and Midwest Petroleum Travel Plaza on their contribution to the Route 66 Mural City’s public art. We think you should should get a “A Best of Show” ribbon for your Classic Road Show mural. Our question now is where’s the Classic Road Show T-Shirt?

To see more public art outside the Viva Cuba Mural Project in Cuba MO, and other Ray Harvey art in Cuba go here.

To see Ray Harvey’s website, go here.

To read the story behind Harvey’s Bette Davis mural, go here.

To see Harvey’s murals on the Phillips 66 station, go here.

To learn about the widelux camera and see more of Harvey’s widelux shots, go here.

Ray Harvey painted his own car show.

Ray Harvey painted his own car show.

Mural image rights reserved to Ray Harvey

Stories from the World’s Largest Rocking Chair on Route 66…

Seven and a half year-old Laney waited a year for this photo.

Seven and a half year-old Laney waited a year for this photo.

Cuba/Fanning MO:  This was the third year for the Picture at the Rocker Day at the Fanning US 66 Outpost General Store.  Having been at the first two events,I almost didn’t go this year, but I thought that I would run out and get a quick photo.

I forgot that it’s the stories and the people that make this event. The first two years the Cuba Fire Department brought out their lift truck to raise people to the rocker, but this year they sold their truck, and Danny and Carolyn Sanazaro, owners of the rocker, rented a lift to raise people to the seat of the rocker so that  they could get their photos.

In fact when the chair was delivered the day before, some folks got an early lift up to the rocker  because they were traveling and couldn’t stay over for the next day.

With Dan running the lift, his son using the bullhorn, their daughter filling in where needed, and Carolyn trying to use people’s cameras for them and to keep the cameras straight so that she was taking photos for the right people, it was a busy place.

When I got there and started talking to Carolyn and the people who there for photos, I remembered what a great event this once-a-year happening is. Carolyn told me about the family that had brought their paraplegic son and carried him up to the seat of the rocker. There were the two couples from St. Louis, who were out for the day.  There was the couple who decided to go up because it was their anniversary.

There was a dad and his daughter Laney, who told me that she was 7 1/2. Last year, they had missed the event by two days, and Laney had wanted to return for a year. So being a good dad, he and Laney drove an hour from Fletcher, MO for the experience and the photo. When they handed Carolyn their camera on the way up to the seat of the rocker, wouldn’t you know it, the battery was dead.

While they were going to the top of the rocker, Carolyn ran in and took batteries out of her own camera for theirs. She got the shots and told them to keep the batteries in case they wanted to do more sightseeing. I took some photos too and emailed them to the dad and his daughter. You can see one at the top of the page. Afterwards, they bought souvenirs inside the Outpost General Store

Another young woman was there from Texas wearing a red Sooner T-Shirt and carrying a bear wearing sunglasses. She came out for her rocker photo and was then going back to St. Louis for a Brooks and Dunn concert before returning home to Texas. This is her photo in the Texas-sized rocker.

This young woman traveled from Texas for a rocker photo and a concert.

This young woman traveled from Texas for a rocker photo and a concert.

Families, couples, lone individuals, bears, some comfortable with heights, others pretty scared; they all got their pictures.

I talked to one couple from St. Louis, who was out for the day. He was going up, but she wasn’t comfortable with heights, so she snapped the photos. Later, they went into Cuba, visited the murals and, since he liked trains, they ate at Frisco’s. Before leaving town, they visited Connie’s Shoppe at the Wagon Wheel and toured a couple rooms. They said that the wife’s father had a Model T and his car club might enjoy a trip to Cuba.

I saw other people from the rocker walking around town and coming out of restaurants, so I imagine the Picture at the Rocker event, is good  for the economy.

Last year, after I left the rocker, a bluegrass band showed up and went up to the rocker to play. I wonder what I missed this year.

Watch the Fanning US 66 website for the date of next year’s Picture at the Rocker Day. The Outpost’s next big event is their archery tournament on September 25, the same day as the Lion’s Club Car Show.  These dual events should bring a lot  more folks to Cuba’s attractions.

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