Scenes from Spyderfest U.S. 2012 in Cuba Mo

Sometimes the parts seem to be more significant than the whole. Spyder riders (or ryders as it is sometimes spelled) love to customize their bikes and gear. That’s what made Spyderfest such a show for the locals in Cuba during the Spyderfest U.S. 2012 event in April.

This short slideshow shows many of their modifications (mods) and customizations to their bikes at this year’s Spyderfest. Through the changes that the riders make to their bikes, they express their feelings, beliefs, interests, and allegiances. Enjoy their passion for the Spyder experience. If you want to see a stock Spyder, visit Cowtown USA in Cuba. However, Len Damouth does tend to customize new Spyders too before he sells them. A “plain” Spyder doesn’t stay plain long.

If  you had a Spyder, how would you personalize it? What do you feel strongly enough about, that you would put it out there for all the world to see? Is a color, design, or something that you believe in?

Learn more about Cuba at and

Hot Rods & Cool rides in Cuba, Missouri

Hot Rod Power Tour 2012 Midwest Travel Plaza  Exit 208

A few of the Power Tour cars gathered in the Midwest Travel Plaza parking lot.

Last night we received a tip from car buff Jerry McLain that the Hot Rod Magazine Power Tour of classic cars would be traveling down Highway 19 to I-44 Exit 208 where they would turn right and travel west. Thousands of cars were expected to make the trip, and they were  expected in Cuba between 10:00-10:30 am.

Around 7:30 am on Wednesday, while on an errand, I started seeing some of the cars at the Huddle House, Super 8, and the Midwest Travel Plaza. I stopped to take some photos and talked to some of the tourers. One driver told me that they were part of the early wave and that cars would go by for several hours.  The tour directed them to I-44, but  a few of the cars made it into Cuba.  We are use to classic cars traveling Route 66, but not as many come to Cuba from Hwy. 19, so this was a treat.

A Huddle House breakfast for the Hot Rod Power Tour

We saw these beauties at Huddle House.

Country Kitchen Cuba MO cars

Some of the drivers stopped off for breakfast at the Country Kitchen.

Super 8 Cuba MO cool car

Super 8 had this cool ride and a few motorcycles.

Classic Truck on Hwy 19 Cuba Mo

Even a few trucks made their way into Cuba.

Spyder Huddle House Cuba MO

A couple of spyders were in town too. This one was from Ohio and his driver caught breakfast at Huddle House.

Then I ran into these guys who were huddled around a map on their car while I was taking photos. I heard them say ZZ, so I asked them if they were looking for ZZ? They said yes, and so I told them how to get to Washington Street, which was also Route 66 and then ZZ. While giving directions, I mentioned the restored Phillips 66 station at the 4-way, and their eyes lit up. One man said, “That’s what we are looking for.” It seems that this group from North Carolina wanted to get off I-44 and see some attractions. They ended up going into Cuba to take photos and visit the Wagon Wheel Motel, the Phillips station, murals, and when I left them they were going to look at rooms at the Wagon Wheel with the idea of bringing their car club back to Cuba. They were also planning a trip to the rocker. Below are some photos of their cars and a few other scenes in town. Too bad more of the drivers didn’t realize what they were missing as they traveled down I-44. We enjoyed seeing them in Cuba.

Looking for Route 66 Cuba MO

These smart drivers wanted to get off the interstate for a more scenic drive. Our conversation took them into Cuba.

Restored Phillips 66 Station in Cuba, MO on Route 66

The drivers appreciated the Phillips 66 Station, owned by Wallis Companies.

Vintage Phillips 66 Station Cuba MO

This scene is a blast from the past.

Amelia Earhart Mural Cuba Mo

The tourers took some photos with the murals.

Shelly's Route 66 Cafe Cuba MO

A few cars stopped at Shelly's Route 66 Cafe.

Wagon Wheel Motel Hot Rod Power Tour Cuba MO

Some of the tour members checked out the rooms at the Wagon Wheel Motel with the idea of returning for a car club cruise.

Spyder at Frisco's Cuba Mo

This spyder driver returned to Cuba and was lunching at Frisco's. His group had been in town for Spyderfest.


Hot Rod Power Tour 2012

scenes from around town during the Power Tour

For more on the Hot Rod Power Tour go here.

Show-Me Missouri feature includes historic Cuba building

Show-Me Missouri "Pressed for Time" by Jim Winnerman

"Pressed for Time" by Jim Winnerman includes information about Cuba, Missouri's Mesker building.

A recent email from author Jim Winnerman alerted me to the publication of his article on Mesker buildings that would include information on Cuba’s Mesker building in Show-Me Missouri Magazine. A vintage Mesker building has a metal front applied to a rather plain building to give it architectural detail. It was a economical, quick way for a businessman to enhance his store front. Besides detailing the history of the company that made the Meskers, the article “Pressed for Time Discovering Missouri’s Meskers” includes the locations of Meskers in Missouri, both restored and those that have fallen on hard times.

Unfortunately, Cuba’s contribution to the article, located on Smith Street, just off Route 66, is one of Cuba’s biggest eyesores. An earlier blog “Cuba’s Mesker building needs rescue and restoration” explained its significance and provided several photos. In the past, attempts to rescue the building were thwarted, and now a legal situation seems to have the building tied up while it continues to be a blight on the historic district.

Mesker building Cuba, Missouri

Cuba's Mesker building is a sad reminder of times gone by.

The article quotes Marilyn Stewart of Cuba’s Historical Preservation Commission concerning the plight of Cuba’s Mesker building. Stewart has worked to identify and chronicle Cuba historic buildings. Cuba’s Mesker is deteriorating and according to Winnerman’s article a piece of the facade has fallen off and sets in the mayor’s office while the fate of the building is in question. More details can be found in the article and magazine.

Show-Me Missouri Summer Edition

Purchase this Show-Me Missouri magazine for full details on the Mesker.

Show-Me Missouri Magazine article by Jim Winnerman

Mesker buildings that have been restored are an attractive asset in their communities.

Cuba’s citizens have often stepped up to restore Cuba’s historic buildings. It is hoped that the issues surrounding this building will be resolved before it is too late and that the building can be restored and repurposed so that Cuba’s Mesker building can continue its history in Cuba.

In the meantime, read Winnerman’s article and appreciate Cuba’s Mesker for what it was instead of what it is now. If you have memories of the building in its better days, please share them with us in the comments section. Perhaps we can keep the building alive in our memories and hopes for the future while it is awaiting rescue.

Mesker Building nameplate  Cuba, Missouri


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