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Spring Cruise

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Per request, a few of us discussed at various times last year doing a Spring National Road cruise. In an effort to give it a catchy name, I've come up with "Madonna 2 Madonna". Well, OK, it lacks the "WOW" factor, but I never had any marketing classes, so you'll have to forgive me.

 

My thoughts the last couple of weeks are as follow. The cruise would encompass the National Road between two of the "Madonna of the Trail" monuments. Starting at the Old National Road Welcome Center Saturday morning after a hearty breakfast at a local establishment. Then we cruise west to Glen Miller Park to pay homage to the Madonna of the Trail monument. From there, we continue the journey along the National Road, making various stops along the way, with the typical lunch "somewhere". I kind of thought of making Terre Haute the overnight stop. Then on Sunday, get some grub, continue into Illinois, and end the journey with an afternoon lunch in Vandalia and visit the Madonna of the Trail monument there.

 

That's about all I came up with. The total distance is around 240 miles. However, I'm going to be upfront with everyone when I say my knowledge of some of the alignments of the National Road is quite inferior to others who might be willing to come along on that weekend. SO, if there are others who'd want to go and know the route better than I, your knowledge might have to lead the caravan. The last thing I'd want is to pass up some cool sections that I don't know about....which I know is the case, especially in Illinois.

 

So there it is.....Discuss!

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If I start saving my quarters now, I can probably make a trip like this in April or May. Scheduling will be key as this will be something I prefer to do on a weekend I don't have my kids.

 

I've never sleuthed for NR alignments east of Indy, but I think the old road is 95% or more buried under US 40. But west of Indy, I've got this whole thing covered all the way Vandalia.

 

Most of the old NR alignments in western Indiana are really short. The ones that are still driveable all involve an old bridge.

 

In Illinois, aside from the abandoned brick/cement road, some of which is more or less driveable, most of the old NR alignments that remain go through various small towns that US 40 bypasses today.

 

So really, 85% of the trip from Richmond to Vandalia is a cruise down US 40.

 

Now, if you want to get hard core, I can take you all into the Illinois woods and show you a 50' wide ribbon where no trees grow, or down a creekbed to show you the stone foundation of a blown-out bridge...

 

jim

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If I start saving my quarters now, I can probably make a trip like this in April or May.
First off, after those reports and photos, your participation is essentially essential. As soon as you can sort out the available weekends, feed them into the planning. Along those lines, I'll throw out that I've got the first and last weekends of April filled. If you and Chris both go, I'll drive my Matrix wannabe and we'll have a fleet.

 

Pat, that "route" sounds good to me. I will mention that, with another 60 "crow miles" we could add a third Madonna (I believe that the OH & IN Madonnas are the closest pair in existence) but, at our typical real world speed, that could add a lot of time. I suspect sticking with the two Madonna agenda is a good idea.

 

I've mentioned my two known "bad" weekends for April and May and, as far as I know now, all the rest are available. Let the bidding begin.

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Wouldn't it be fun to go back and hit that OH Madonna? But you're right, Denny. 60 hours at *my* normal cruise speed is 2.5-3 hours!!

 

I also realized that to make a weekend trip I'll have to find somebody to watch me dogs. Unless I stay in a hotel in Terre Haute that would take my Rottweiler!

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If you and Chris both go, I'll drive my Matrix wannabe and we'll have a fleet.

March 1-2 and April 19-20 do NOT work for me.

 

I can't do the Saturday portion, but would love to join you enroute bright and early on Sunday morning if all works out.

 

Pick a date soon so we can plan around it.

 

Chris

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Per request, a few of us discussed at various times last year doing a Spring National Road cruise.

That's about all I came up with. The total distance is around 240 miles. However, I'm going to be upfront with everyone when I say my knowledge of some of the alignments of the National Road is quite inferior to others who might be willing to come along on that weekend. SO, if there are others who'd want to go and know the route better than I, your knowledge might have to lead the caravan. The last thing I'd want is to pass up some cool sections that I don't know about....which I know is the case, especially in Illinois.

 

 

First of all, COUNT US IN for whatever and whenever! Secondly, here's everything I personally know about current U.S. 40 in IL and the Old National Road. (Did I send this to you at one time?).....Bliss

 

U.S. 40 / HISTORIC NATIONAL ROAD

 

ST. LOUIS TO MARSHALL, IL

(175 miles; 5-6 hours)

 

St. Louis:

 

(1) Cross Poplar Street Bridge and stay in I-70 lanes

(2) Take exit #6, IL 111, right

(3) Turn left at first light; Collinsville Road. Becomes St. Louis Street

 

Collinsville:

 

(1) Turn right at W. Main Street light

(2) Turn left at IL 159 North.

(3) Turn right at St. Charles Drive / frontage road light

(4) Go to Riedle Street, turn left, and cross over the current U.S. 40 alignment at the

light

(5) Go right at the next stop sign

 

Troy:

 

(1) Jog left at the English Tudor building/Collinsville Road

(2) Go right at the next stop sign/Edwardsville Road which quickly becomes Market

Street

(3) Turn right at IL 162/Dewey Street

(4) Go left on Center Street. (Eventually note Sunset Inn on the left.)

(5) Turn left onto U.S. 40 at the stop sign

(6) Turn left onto IL 4

(7) Turn left onto IL 4 South at the stop sign

(8) Cross overpass and turn left at the sign for St. Jacob

 

Highland:

 

(1) Continue east on Broadway

(2) Turn left at the IL 160 light/Poplar Street

(3) Jog right onto IL 160 North

(4) Turn right on the current U.S. 40 alignment soon after the underpass

(5) Turn right onto IL 143 at the Shell convenience store

(6) Make an immediate left onto IL 143/Schuster Road, the frontage road

(7) Cross over Baumann Road at the next stop sign and continue east

 

Pocahontas:

 

(1) Follow State Street through town

(2) Turn right at stop sign for newer U.S. 40 alignment @ east edge of town

(3) Watch for Old National Trails alignment on the left just past Neal’s

(Note old, inaccessible 40 bridge off to the right after crossing Shoal Creek)

(4) Turn left onto Shawnee Road to view dead end alignment

(Watch for ghost bridge on left after returning to 40 from Shawnee Road)

 

Greenville:

 

(1) Turn right at the U.S. 40 E. stop sign by the overpass

(2) Go left onto 40 E. at the Greenville sign. (Enter the 2nd left before overpass)

(3) Take the next left and cross over westbound 40 lane onto Old National Road which becomes Franklin Street

(4) Go straight at the next stop sign on Franklin which becomes Third Street

(5) Go straight on Third at the next stop sign

(6) Follow the Historic National Road sign rather than the SPUR sign

(7) Continue east on Beaumont Avenue

(8) Go east on IL 140 as is passes Casey’s convenience store

(Downtown has functioning GlobeTheater marquee, retro diner, etc.)

 

Mulberry Grove:

 

(1) Enter town on Wall Street

(2) Turn left at the first stop sign

(3) Follow IL 140/Main Street to next stop sign and turn right

(4) Turn right (west) at the U.S. 40 stop sign and cross RR overpass

(5) Make immediate left onto IL 140 E.

(Note old concrete bridge on right before entering Hagarstown)

 

Hagarstown:

 

(1) Go through town on IL 140

 

Vandalia:

 

(1) Enter town on IL 140/St. Louis Avenue

(2) Turn left onto Seventh Street/IL 140

(3) Turn right onto Gallatin/IL 140 to drive down main drag

(4) Turn right at first light past courthouse onto the Historic National Road SPUR

(5) Cross Johnson Street and turn left onto Edward at next stop sign

(6) Turn left onto First Street and cross Johnson again

(8) Turn right onto current 40 alignment, Gallatin, at next stop sign

(Downtown area is cool; 1st capitol building, Liberty Theater marquee, etc.)

 

Bluff City:

 

(1) Continue east on 40 and cross I-70 overpass on east side of town

 

Brownstown:

 

(1) Continue east on 40 E. (Note old cabins on left)

 

St. Elmo:

 

(1) Turn left at Business District sign/Main Street

(downtown is worth a look; Elmo Theater marquee, Mail Pouch sign, etc.)

 

Altamont:

 

(1) Turn left onto Main Street at IL 128 for cool downtown area

 

Keptown:

 

(Note retro El Rancho Motel sign on left after leaving town)

 

Funkhouser:

 

(1) Just keep cruisin’

 

Effingham:

 

(1) Turn left onto Henrietta Street at 1st stop sign

(2) Turn right at 1st light onto Fayette Street

(3) Turn left onto U.S. 45/Mattoon Street

(4) Turn right onto Jefferson Street

(5) Turn left back onto current alignment at the end of Jefferson

(Note Heart Theater building and marquee at Mattoon and Jefferson)

 

Teutopolis:

 

(1) Just keep cruisin’ but note “Hoosiers” style high school on the right and cool main drag

 

Montrose:

 

(1) Just keep cruisin’

 

Woodbury:

 

(1) There is an old alignment to the right but it’s not marked

 

 

Jewett:

 

(1) Turn right at the Historic National Road sign and go through town on Cumberland Road

(2) Turn right back onto current alignment on east side of town

(Note old school, Grandpa’s Place, concrete marker at corner, & caved-in restaurant)

 

Greenup:

 

(1) Turn left at Historic National Road sign, 1350E, to cross covered bridge

(2) Turn right onto IL 130

(3) Turn left at current U.S. 40 stop sign

(Awesome downtown area, including old shoe factory flea market. Note 5 Star Motel and Meramec

Caverns barn/shed signs when leaving.)

 

Casey:

 

(1) Turn right at Historic National Road sign and follow Main Street through town

(Great Mobil flying horse sign at current U.S. 40 and IL 49 and scenic downtown area)

 

Martinsville:

 

(1) Follow Cumberland Road through town

(2) Turn right after cool RR underpass to return to current alignment

(Note another “Hoosiers” style high school, old water tower, and then RR underpass when leaving)

 

Clark Center:

 

(1) Turn right at Freedom Church sign

(2) Turn left onto E. Main and follow it through town

(3) Turn left onto Johnston Street to return to current alignment

(There is a short brick alignment east of town – turn right at 1400 Road)

 

Marshall:

 

(1) Turn right at “Marshall” sign and take Archer Avenue into town

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Does anybody have a problem with the weekend of May 3-4?
I think that would work for me.

 

There could be a conflict with members who have already scheduled big Lumpy Rug Day celebrations.

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Does anybody have a problem with the weekend of May 3-4?

May 4 works for me. I'll just need to know where to meet at what time that Sunday morning.

 

Chris

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Unfortunately that's a bad weekend for us, as we've got tickets to see Jeff Dunham in Waukegan, IL on the 3rd. BUT, if that weekend's good for everyone else, don't change it on our account. There are enough "Road Scholars" to make it a successful weekend.

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What if we do it 2 weeks later? Anybody unable then?

 

 

Sorry I haven't put in my two cents before now, but my hard drive crashed and I'm just now getting back up to speed. Sad to say, I lost nearly all of my photos from last year:( All I can salvage are the ones I posted to Webshots and a few from the local fair which I gave to my brother.

 

Anyway, we're going to do out best to make this year's cruise. We're pretty open about the timing, although May would be preferable. Maybe we'll have Georgie-Porgie's tax rebate by then:) Richmond, IN is an easy day's drive from us, and we could probably make it home from Vandalia in one day, but we'd have to take the (gasp!) interstate:)

 

So at least for now, count us in.

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...my hard drive crashed and I'm just now getting back up to speed. Sad to say, I lost nearly all of my photos from last year:(
Having just lost part of one day's pictures I can only begin to imagine what losing a year's worth would feel like. Super bummer. On the Sweetheart Cruise, I learned that Kip had a recent crippling disk crash, too. I'm guessing you're both prime targets for the next backup salesman to come through.

 

Glad you're back and glad you're planning on joining the spring outing. Hey, Pat, how's that date poll going?

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Hey, Pat, how's that date poll going?

 

It's looking as of now May 17th is the day!

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Per request, a few of us discussed at various times last year doing a Spring National Road cruise. In an effort to give it a catchy name, I've come up with "Madonna 2 Madonna". Well, OK, it lacks the "WOW" factor, but I never had any marketing classes, so you'll have to forgive me.

 

My thoughts the last couple of weeks are as follow. The cruise would encompass the National Road between two of the "Madonna of the Trail" monuments. Starting at the Old National Road Welcome Center Saturday morning after a hearty breakfast at a local establishment. Then we cruise west to Glen Miller Park to pay homage to the Madonna of the Trail monument. From there, we continue the journey along the National Road, making various stops along the way, with the typical lunch "somewhere". I kind of thought of making Terre Haute the overnight stop. Then on Sunday, get some grub, continue into Illinois, and end the journey with an afternoon lunch in Vandalia and visit the Madonna of the Trail monument there.

 

Any suggestions for good but inexpensive motels in Richmond and Vandalia? Non-smoking section is a *must*, and TV preferred.

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Any suggestions for good but inexpensive motels in Richmond and Vandalia? Non-smoking section is a *must*, and TV preferred.
I stayed at the Golden Inn, near Richmond, in 2006 and liked it. It's about 4 miles east of the Madonna on US-40. The motel's web site is here and a glimpse of my visit is here.

 

In Vandalia, my favorite is Jay's Inn but it's been full on my last two visits so I've stayed at the Travelodge right next door. I have no complaints with either but think Jay's is a bit nicer.

 

Rates for all three of these motels are in the $40s so the Ritz they ain't but all three have been clean and seem well maintained.

 

By the way, when I first tried to reply to this post, I got an "internal server error". This sometimes happens when the terminator is left off of a quote. That was the case here so I edited the post to correct that and was then able to reply. I'm not picking on you, Bob, but you (and others) might want to look here.

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Unfortunately that's a bad weekend for us, as we've got tickets to see Jeff Dunham in Waukegan, IL on the 3rd. BUT, if that weekend's good for everyone else, don't change it on our account. There are enough "Road Scholars" to make it a successful weekend.

 

Waukegan is just about 30 miles from my house. Maybe we could get together? My guess is that you'll be going to the Genesee Theater. Who is Jeff Dunham?

 

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