Informational signs will be erected at the Camp Joy cabin and the Underpass Cafe – both restored by the Lebanon-Laclede County Route 66 Society this year -- so tourists are aware of their role in Route 66 history.

The Route 66 Society board voted Tuesday to hire Young Signs of Lebanon to create the signs.

The Camp Joy sign will replace a temporary vinyl banner attached to the north side of the cabin that the Route 66 Society restored and moved to Lebanon’s Boswell Park earlier this year. Camp Joy, founded in 1927, one year after the two-lane gravel Route 66 came through town, was one of Lebanon’s first tourist camps.

The sign, approximately 8 feet by 8 feet, will serve multiple purposes: alerting travelers on Route 66/Elm Street that the cabin is an historic attraction, telling the story of the cabin to those who stop to see the cabin, and, by including its logo, giving credit to the Route 66 Society for the project.

The board also considered a sign that could be seen from the road but did not tell the story of the cabin. Members preferred the sign that included smaller type with Camp Joy’s history.

The Route 66 Society will use a previous $1,000 donation from Craig Fishel to pay for the sign. Fishel’s grandparents and great-grandparents founded Camp Joy and operated it until 1971.

Loretta Young of Young Signs said the sign will last 18 to 20 years.

A smaller sign will be placed on the fence in front of the Underpass Cafe, located just west of the Frisco Railroad bridge on Route 66 near Phillipsburg. The sign will include the story of Carter & Lawson’s Underpass Cafe and Service Station as well as a photo of how it looked when open in the 1950s.

The Route 66 Society is wrapping up a two-year project to restore the cafe’s exterior, a project that was interrupted when the Camp Joy cabin became available for restoration. Lettering indicating that the cafe served breakfast, lunch and dinner and had a gift shop was hand-painted on the building last month.

Bruce Owen, Bill Jones and Leland Townsend of the Route 66 Society sandblasted the fence in front of the building last Saturday, then applied primer. Owen said a coat of paint will be applied soon.

The board also discussed installing neon tubing along the top of the building, although the neon wouldn’t be functional.

And Gary McMillan, who owns the property and has contributed financially to the restoration, proposed that the Route 66 Society erect a sign identifying the still-standing Carter & Lawson Garage at the site.

“You guys have really made the place look good,” McMillan told the board.

The board discussed scheduling a dedication ceremony when the Underpass Cafe restoration is completed.

In other business, Lebanon tourism director Nicole McGinnis, who also is a member of the Route 66 Society board, said the new Route 66 banners will be hung after hardware is installed on the light poles along the route, although installation may be delayed until after Christmas banners are put up and taken down.

Board member Gary Sosniecki said he has been asked whether the Route 66 banners that hung in Boswell Park but deteriorated will be replaced. McGinnis said the city has a few sample Route 66 banners with different designs that might be available.

McGinnis also reported on the recent filming in Lebanon for a Missouri Life TV program on Route 66. She explained that the program will be about Route 66 in Missouri in total, “but only a few communities took part in it. Lebanon was one of them.”

Also Tuesday, the Route 66 board:

--heard from Treasurer Cliff Claxton that he attended the recent Lebanon Park Board meeting. Claxton said it’s important that the Route 66 Society be represented at every meeting of the park board to encourage the Lebanon Parks and Recreation Department to build the planned amphitheater in Boswell Park before next year’s Route 66 festival. Without the amphitheater, the Route 66 Society has to pay $4,500 each year for a festival stage, Claxton said.

--set the society’s annual membership meeting for 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 25.

--agreed to participate in the Lebanon Christmas Parade with cars but not a float.

--has enough members planning to attend the induction of Route 66 icon Glenn Wrinkle onto the Lebanon Wall of Honor on Nov. 7 that they will reserve a table and sit as a group.

--heard from Cathy Dame, director of the Lebanon-Laclede County Library and secretary of the Route 66 Society, that group tours of the Route 66 Museum are scheduled for Oct. 15 and 19.

--heard from John Thomas, president of the New Ground Car Club, that the organization plans a benefit on Nov. 2 for the family of the 12-year-old Lebanon girl who was killed in a hit-and-run accident Saturday night. Three members of the club were among the 21 attending Tuesday’s meeting.  

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