Essays taken from a weekly newspaper column published in the Washington County News, Washington, Kansas. Look for my book, "Dispatches From Kansas," available from Amazon.com, or from the author.
Rats!. The last time I drove past the "Flamingo" it was raining like the end of the world, and we had it on our list of places to return to. At that time the "APTEL" part was still attached above. It reminds me of the huge "Green Acres" Restaurant and Lounge/Bowling sign by the Super 8 in Abilene. The jet age at its best.
The eastern outskirts of Salina still shows traces of its former motor heritage, reminiscent of Route 66 but without the neon and glitz. Unfortunately, it appears most of it is rapidly being bulldozed to make way for ugly steel buildings or vacant lots. Too bad we can't see a resurgence in saving our history rather than condemning it to an unremembered past.
The pictures turned out great. I just wished there was a way to share the music they entertained us with. The poem that Andy Wilkinson and Andy Hedges performed was unbelievable. I am still chuckling about some of the jokes that Nick and his dummy did. Ann was great.
I roamed 40 for years - my mom, aunt and some cousins lived off it just the other side of KC, in Blue Springs, Grain Valley and Oak Grove.Now and then, when I was heading home and had time, I'd take 40 west and then drop south whenever it seemed the thing to do. Had to watch myself though. Too much of this and I'd end up in Colorado - or Montana. Or Vancouver. Or.....
I wonder if there would be a market for refurbished Jet-Age signs? If the sheet metal is at all usable, the rest is pretty easy - paint, wiring, structure. Fifty or fifty-five years is about right for the nostalgia to kick in, too.
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