Having attended the International Mother Road Festival in Springfield since 2005, I'm still always looking forward to it. In addition to the incredible display of cars, we always enjoy the camaraderie of being a part of the Travel Expo, which features the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway, the Route 66 associations from Illinois & Missouri, as well as several Route 66 communities and attractions.
The event starts off on Friday night September 25th with the "parade" (technically a cruise). It's a great way to see the lineup of classic cars (see the video from last year). Look for Abe Lincoln in the lead car!
Saturday is the big day with activities, including live bands and great food lasting until the late evening (11am-10pm). And of course, the 1000+ cars will be out in full force. At the Travel Expo, you'll likely see Route 66 favorite Whispering Joe singing and performing on his guitar for the crowd. Chances are yours truly will sit in with him for "Wild Thing" by the Troggs. The old rock-n-roller in me occasionally needs a venue to vent (I mean sing).
Sunday this year will be special. There will be a special award for restored police car, in honor of the late Martin Milner, who just passed away recently. Milner was the star of the tv shows "Route 66" and "Adam 12," and he was a featured guest at the first Mother Road Festival in 2002.
So make your plans for September 25-27 in downtown Springfield for the International Mother Road Festival - see you there! -Geoff Ladd