Day 3: Rainy Day Reflections in MO

It rained all day — from a slight drizzle to heavy downpours. Not great conditions for taking pictures (or getting good results) but I did pretty well anyway. Most of the way was on or near Route 50 (aka Highway 50) – which doesn’t get nearly as much press as Route 66 or the Lincoln Highway though it has some pretty amazing stuff. It runs across the whole country. More about it here:
http://www.route50.com/

A bit of old Highway 50 that dead-ends… and a section of old Highway 50 next to the new one:

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I am often asked how I find so many great things on these trips. The short answer is: research. I have been keeping “To See” lists for years so that when opportunity arises, I’m pretty much ready to plan the route. About 90% of my route and what I photograph is pre-planned (the other 10% is stuff I stumble upon). About 30% of what I go to see has either been demolished or altered to a severe degree. The quantity of images and subjects at my website might leave the impression that there’s tons of wonderful old stuff throughout the country but that is really not the case. Beautiful old buildings, neon signs, and giant fiberglass wonders are disappearing on a daily basis.

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One of the things that I will try to do with this blog is make it more interactive and provocative. I will try to hit on some different topics and welcome your feedback in the comments below. I took a few photos today in Sedalia, MO that might spark some thought or discussion. Let’s start with this one and I’ll add a couple others tomorrow morning.

The Best Western: built 1960, remodeled 2001

A mid-century, two-story glass-faced building that has been updated in front with a huge & hideous awning and porte-cochere. I guess this is meant to hide the age of the building and make it look new & “chain”-y. Better than demolition I suppose which will undoubtedly come next. Unless it can hang on through various concealments for about 20 more years til 1950s/1960s is hip and rare enough to be properly renovated. Should we be concerned with garden variety classics like this or only push to save Big Name Buildings?

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