Enjoy this great story from our current issue, then take a test drive to see how you can have full digital access for less than a cup of java! There’s something about the songs of rock superstar Jon Bon Jovi, with lyrics such as “freedom was a tank of gas…to drive, just drive,” that has always felt like a road trip set to music. And now there’s another reason to air guitar in your car—especially if your travel plans take you through New Jersey.


A Garden State Parkway rest area, at milepost 123 in South Amboy, has been renamed in Bon Jovi’s honor, thanks to a collaboration between the New Jersey Turnpike Authority and the New Jersey Hall of Fame.

Sayreville, New Jersey—The Jon Bon Jovi Service Area has all the conveniences of a typical rest stop—restaurants, bathrooms, gas—in a setting that feels like you’re visiting Jovi at home. There’s a framed platinum record from the artist’s personal collection, commemorating a million copies sold of Bon Jovi’s 1987 mega-smash album Slippery When Wet. There are also banners adorned with inspirational quotes, a gigantic lit-up guitar, and a life-size hologram of Bon Jovi himself that talks and answers big questions, such as whether it is etiquette in North or South Jersey to put ketchup or mustard on pork roll.

The plaza is one of nine Garden State Parkway rest stops to be named after Jersey’s famous sons and daughters. Others will soon include the Whitney Houston Service Area near Union, New Jersey; the Toni Morrison Service Area at Ocean View; and the Frank Sinatra Service Area in Galloway. (And, fun fact, Frank Sinatra was actually Bon Jovi’s great-uncle on his father’s side.)

The Jon Bon Jovi Service Center is two miles from Bon Jovi’s childhood home —16 Robinhood Drive in Sayreville— where the singer also lived as an adult while his band was recording its first three records. Between those walls, Jon Bon Jovi wrote his band’s first No. 1 hit song, “You Give Love a Bad Name,” which is featured on that same platinum record on display at his eponymous rest stop.

New Jersey First Lady Tammy Murphy says she hopes the service area “inspires the next Jon Bon Jovi.” But even if it doesn’t set you down the road toward rock ’n’ roll stardom, it will allow you the chance to answer an over-tired kid, who’s asked for the hundredth time how much longer the road trip will be, by singing, “Ooooooh, we’re halfway there! Take my hand, we’ll make it I swear!”
—Eric Spitznagel

Jon Bon Jovi Service Area
Milepost 123, between exits 124 and 125

The rest stop is near Sayreville, the Jersey borough where the future rocker was born and raised

21st Annual International Route 66 Mother Road Festival

The International Route 66 Mother Road Festival brings classic car, street machines, muscle cars and hot rod enthusiasts to historic downtown Springfield for an incredible weekend of family entertainment.

Take a look at what you don’t want to miss!
Friday night Route 66 City Nights Cruise with up to 2,000 classic cars cruising into downtown Springfield
Enjoy live music from the Neverly Brothers Friday night
Burnout Competition Saturday at 3:00pm
The Miss Mother Road pageant takes place on Saturday sponsored by Springfield Vintage
One Foot In, The Groove Daddies & The Blooze Brothers hit the stage Saturday.
Old Capitol Farmers Market – Saturday morning
Admire the spectacular automotive eye candy in the “Monet of Cars” featuring cars from Dick Levi on Saturday & Sunday
East Bound and Down, RECON TECHS of Springfield presents the Ultimate Smokey & the Bandit tribute all weekend with finale on Sunday
Post your “selfie” at any Illinois Route 66 landmark to Facebook, or Instagram with hashtag #MyIL66 and #visitspringfield to be featured on Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway social media! Info at #MyIL66.
IL State Capitol Photo Op! Stage a photo of your car with the majestic Illinois State Capitol Building as your backdrop (4th & Capitol)
Grab the Explorer Passport and visit our Living Legends of Route 66 throughout Springfield, available at the Springfield Visitors Center
Register your ride for a chance to be awarded one of the top honors, show will be judged by CASI certified national judges

FESTIVAL HOURS: Registration Thursday, Sept. 22 11:30am-6pm, Friday, Sept 23, Registration 11am-8pm, Cruise Line-up 3pm, Cruise into Downtown 6pm, Show hours 6pm-10pm, Saturday, Sept. 24, Registration 8am-Noon, Show Hours 9am-10pm and Sunday, Sept 25, 9am-2pm, Awards Ceremony at Noon

Experience North of Normal in Fargo

I’m sure you’ve heard of Fargo, but it’s probably way different than you expect. It’s an unconventional place that you’d have to see to believe. Experience North of Normal in Fargo and discover the colorful prairie landscapes just miles from edgy and unexpected downtown streets, unpretentious restaurants with outstanding dishes, and events nearly every day all year around. For more information about Fargo-Moorhead-West Fargo; please visit the website: fargomoorhead.org

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Historic Route 66, Visit Claremore

Cowboys, guns, oil, a big blue whale, the world’s largest totem pole, Will Rogers and the true nut house…experience Oklahoma hospitality, the legends of Claremore and Historic Route 66 and all her glory in beautiful northeast Oklahoma!

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Travel Itineraries Through South Carolina’s Old 96 District

Road trips are an amazing way to make memories, but all of the prep work can feel exhausting. Deciding the best places to visit, eat, shop, and stay along the way is a daunting task that can easily overwhelm. When travelers want to get out of the house but don’t want the extra stress beforehand, pre-planned itineraries are a saving grace. 

South Carolina’s Old 96 District– featuring the counties of Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, and McCormick– has built a number of travel itineraries showcasing the “unexpected wonders” the region has to offer. The Old 96 District boasts an abundant outdoor scene away from the city crowds, plenty of small-town charm, and a plethora of activities in the form of local farms, shops, historic sites, and more. With travel itineraries curated for a number of different travelers, it’s easy to find a plan that matches your interests without hours of research. For those who like more of a loose plan, there are also plenty of themed trails to explore at your own pace.

We’ve highlighted some of our favorite themed trails and itineraries from the Old 96 District. These are just a few of many, so be sure to check out the full list and discover your favorite or explore the rest of the website to curate your own plan!


Everyone loves to satisfy their sweet tooth! Treat yourself along this trail featuring locally-owned bakeries, fine desserts, and other snack spots. Many of these sweets are located in the heart of historic small towns or inside local shops with one-of-a-kind offerings beyond food. What’s not to love? 


This historic piece of South Carolina has historic gems dating all the way back to the Revolutionary War. Some highlights of the trip

include two different Revolutionary War battlefields, authentic vintage train cars, and the birthplace of Dr. Benjamin E. Mays, a prominent Civil Rights Leader.


Spend less time focusing on the logistics and more time focusing on each other. This three-day itinerary is built with couples in mind, focusing on the best experiences, classic and unique, to enjoy with a loved one. Grab your person and enjoy picking strawberries, cozy bed & breakfasts, and learning new activities like archery or clay shooting.

 You can view the full list of itineraries and trails here, or check out the Old 96 District’s travel deals and packages to save as you visit!

Flock to the Rock

Video of the Week brought to you by: Heritage Corridor Convention & Visitors Burea

Illinois’ Starved Rock Country is a winter wonderland, create lifelong memories with amazing views. Just 90 minutes from Chicago. Find out more and plan your visit: FlockToTheRock.com.

Video Location:
Starved Rock Lodge and Conference Center
One Lodge Lane
Oglesby, IL 61348

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Alert Drops

Try Alert Drops. A simple spray on the tongue makes you alert so you don’t drive drowsy. ALL NATURAL-NO CAFFEINE OR STIMULANTS-DOCTOR RECOMMENDED.  Learn more: alert drops.com


Explore the Alleghany Highlands of Virginia on a Scenic Road Trip

Photo of the Week brought to you by: Alleghany Highlands of Virginia

Explore the Alleghany Highlands of Virginia with a scenic road trip through the heart of Virginia’s Mountain Region. There are numerous ways to enjoy all that the Alleghany Highlands has to offer! Many visitors choose to explore on foot, bicycle or horseback on our hundreds of miles of trails. In addition, the unique perspective of paddling in a canoe or kayak on the Alleghany Highlands Blueway is very popular. Others choose to wander the beautiful back roads of a scenic drive, enjoying beautiful mountain vistas, National Historic Monuments and much more along the way. Plan your trip at: Alleghany Highlands of Virginia

Exploring Ohio’s Amish Country Byway

Take a tour along the 160-mile Amish Country Byway, to experience a timeless way of life. Scenic views of gorgeous vistas along winding curves and over rolling hills take you to a bygone, filled with cultural and historic treasures. Be sure to browse the handmade delights, try specialty foods and enjoy the slower pace. Learn more at:  Amish Country Byway

An Escape You’ll Fall for Awaits You Here

Find peace and relaxation in the breathtaking naturescapes that Cape County has to offer. You’ll truly be at one with nature in one of our many lovely hiking & biking trails or historic outdoor locations. Get here for your fall escape.

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