Category: Roadside Stuff

Been Thinkin’ ’bout the Lincoln

Been Thinkin’ ’bout the Lincoln

Over the weekend I plucked a book off the shelf that I’ve had for a few years now: Lincoln Highway Companion: A Guide to America’s First Coast-to-Coast Road by Brian Butko. Flipping through its pages, makes me want to hit the road. I wish I could pinpoint what it was that initially sparked my interest in Americana.

Whenever I’ve traveled along the western half of Pennsylvania’s section of the Lincoln Highway, I’ve had a great time. The riding itself can be dull in some places with lots of traffic lights and congestion. But, those population centers lighten up as you go west and the sights overshadow the annoyance.

Some of the things I’ve seen along the way in PA:

Haines Shoe House – Hellam, PA

Mmmm… donuts… – Maple Donuts in York, PA

Pied Piper – Schellsburg, PA

Dutch Haven – Where I had my first taste of Shoo Fly Pie – Ronks, PA

Mural at the Bison Corral – Schellsburg, PA

Mural at the Bison Corral – Schellsburg, PA

Totem Pole Playhouse / Mail Pouch Barn – Ortanna, PA

Mr. Ed’s Elephant Museum – Ortanna, PA

Ms. Penny Candy at Mr. Ed’s Elephant Museum – Ortanna, PA

Vincent Van Gas a Lincoln Highway Pump Parade gas pump – Schellsburg, PA

Bull Durham ghost ad – Bedford, PA

Dunkle’s Gulf – Bedford, PA

The Coffee Pot – Bedford, PA

Near Jennertown / Stoyestown, PA

Wayne Fettro mural and a Lincoln Highway Pump Parade gas pump – Stoyestown, PA

Roadside Snaps: Captain Brown – The Big Fisherman of Boothbay Harbor, Maine

Roadside Snaps: Captain Brown – The Big Fisherman of Boothbay Harbor, Maine

Literally just down the block from Big Bertha the Butt Tree, is the giant old salt fisherman, Captain Brown. He stands in the parking lot of Brown’s Wharf Motel and Restaurant. At 15 feet tall, you can’t miss him. Brown’s must be pretty proud of him as he is heavily featured on their website.

I’m a little obsessed with his high gloss boots. Weird, I know – there’s something about their rubbery shininess that I love. But, between you and me – there was a time in my life that I considered taking a bite out of one of those cone-shaped, jelly air fresheners because I thought it looked delicious. So perhaps I’m just a little off kilter.

Don’t they look delici… I mean awesome! Don’t they look awesome!

Roadside Americana: Greetings from Woolwich – Mainer C. Lobster

Roadside Americana: Greetings from Woolwich – Mainer C. Lobster

Mainer C. Lobster sits outside of Taste of Maine restaurant in Woolwich, Maine on Route 1. Isn’t he glorious?

Having a lobster this excited about well, everything would probably bring a lot of sunshine to your life.

I’m a little bummed to discover that I could’ve gone inside and bought a magnet with his mug on it in the restaurant gift shop. First of all… restaurant gift shop? Tres Cracker Barrel. But, I did get to see Mainer with the addition of two new teeth, based on the photos posted on Roadside America. Lose out on a magnet, gain a tooth or two. Seems alright, I guess.

Taste of Maine
161 Main St,
Woolwich, ME 04579

Big Bertha of Boothbay Harbor, Maine

Big Bertha of Boothbay Harbor, Maine

Oh, what a lovely little house. So New Englandy, isn’t it? A charming seaside cottag… what the?

Jesus, Mary, and Joseph what is that in the front yard?

Oh. Right. It’s a butt tree. No big whoop.

ARE YOU KIDDING?! IT’S A BUTT TREE! A butt tree. A. BUTT. TREE!

**dies**

We were just driving along on Atlantic Avenue in Boothbay Harbor after visiting a gigantic fisherman and there it was. The best day ever, since last time.

Serenity Glass Park – Port Allegany, Pennsylvania

Serenity Glass Park – Port Allegany, Pennsylvania

While I was riding along Route 6 in Pennsylvania, I passed through Port Allegany. Right in the middle of town sits a small but eye-catching park featuring colorful glass block structures. I couldn’t resist stopping to get a look at what the story was. It was called Serenity Glass Park.

Though the park is small and appears to still be under construction, you could tell it was big on meaning. Port Allegany’s economy has apparently been largely dependant on glass manufacturing. In 2016, Pittsburgh Corning, a manufacturer of glass blocks and long-time local employer, shuttered its doors.

When I pass through small towns like Port Allegheny, there is a sense of community and a unique flavor that I don’t experience on my island of nearly 8 million people. Here, we seem to go out of our way to avoid contact with each other rather than find ways to come together and celebrate what binds us. We are faceless, nameless, anonymous ants scurrying about. Everything is a franchise. Perhaps that’s why I love passing through small town America. It’s like an expedition to find normalcy.

Sometimes I just want to hug these little towns and keep them close so that they live forever.

 

 

 

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