Family Travel: Road Trip on Illinois’ Route 66

travelroad trips & staycations

While on family vacation just outside of Chicago, we inadvertently found ourselves in Pontiac, Illinois on historic Route 66. We were inspired by Vice President of Walt Disney Imagineering, Kathy Mangum, who spoke at the evo Conference about how her team relied on creativity and storytelling to build Cars Land at Disney's California Adventure. We thought... Why not create our own Route 66 story and get a taste of Americana at the same time?

Our story began by pulling into the town square. Everything was closed when we arrived at 5:00 p.m., but we walked around taking in the 1950s feel.

We discovered a town with a proud heritage...

Route 66 Pontic, Illinois sign

...and with lots of painted brick buildings; this one was right across from the Route 66 Museum...

Route 66, Historic Route 66, Pontiac Illinois, Road Trips, Family Travel, Family Vacation

...and with cars on every corner...

Two boys in a Route 66 car

...but none as fun as the real thing (a 1962 Cadillac)...

Two boys in a 1962 Cadillac

 ...outside the Polka Dot Drive In down the road in a neighboring town...

Boy standing with Elvis sculpture

...not only Cadillacs and drive ins are in top condition on Historic Route 66... gas stations in Odette, Joliet, and Dwight have all been restored...

Route 66 restored gas station the boys a perfect way to bond over cars on our Route 66 adventure...

Historic Route 66, Illinois, Gas Stations, Cars, Family Vacation, Family Travel, Road Trips

Troy and I are already planning our next road trip... from Chicago to California along the entire Route 66, landing us right in Cars Land, where the boys will get their kicks. When planning your next road trip, you may want to consider getting a new vehicle from camper trailers Sydney.

If you live in or around Chicago or are planning a family trip there, make time to spend a couple of hours on Historic Route 66 and create your own family story.

What are your favorite road trips?

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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