Road News


The Wheel Power Christian Cyclists began their 2018 Across America Bicycle Mission Tour on August 7th from Thomson, Ga. This is the 15th trip for Judy Bowman, Missionary to the U.S.A. and Founder of Wheel Power; her 8th trip on Route 66 since 1991. Judy, who lives in Lynchburg, VA, pedaled her way to Los Angeles, CA, to attend her 50th High School Reunion on October 14th, while sharing her ministry. They arrived October 11th. Traveling with her were Chrissy Lawrence (Utica, NY), Ron Woodson (Hopewell, VA) and Richard Raser (Los Angeles); other cyclists joined them along the way. They covered 3200 miles in 66 days across 9 states, stopping at numerous Route 66 locations, including Winslow, AZ, and Moriarty, New Mexico, where the photo with bicycles was taken. They will make the return trip in their support van.

Judy’s ‘ride’ is an ELF, classified as a bicycle, while providing the safety and comfort of a car. It can be operated solely by pedaling, but it also has an electric motor, powered by one or more batteries, to help on hills and provide a break from pedaling. A solar panel provides a trickle charge to the battery when the ELF is parked in the sun. It can accommodate an adult passenger, a child in back and has plenty of room for baggage or groceries. Options include heavier load capacity and a sound system. A ‘loaded’ ELF weighs about 200 pounds; the basic model costs roughly $9000.

We hope Judy enjoyed her reunion and touched some lives along the way. The organization is

Courtesy Alan Carlson



Route 66 Magazine is your NUMBER ONE source for information about the people, places, and events. Subscription price is only $25 to receive four quarterly issues a year. Do not be confused by any other publication that VAGUELY CLAIMS to be Route 66 Magazine. Please check or call 727-847-9621 first, to understand which magazine you are dealing with!

Courtesy Route 66 Magazine


One of Albuquerque, New Mexico’s, pioneer motel proprietors, Norman Bugg, passed away in late September 2018 from heart problems. Bugg, 89, formerly operated the Monterey Motel, 2402 Central SW, for over two decades beginning in 1978, and refurbished it into a highly rated establishment. The old Route 66 motel dates back to around 1939 and was originally listed as Monterey Court. In 2017, the no-smoking-allowed motel was sold to a Portland, Oregon, group that currently owns the recently refurbished and reopened El Vado Motel, down the street.

Bugg and his family were famous in Albuquerque for their Christmas season static and animatronics displays illuminated by over 300,000 lights. The Bugg Lights, at their decorated Bugg House, earned them a holiday electric bill over $1000, but it was always free for folks to see. The massive holiday light show was so successful that eventually neighbors complained about the crowds, traffic, and brightness, and a lawsuit finally forced the family to get rid of the displays in 2002.

After residing temporarily in other area locations, the famous Bugg Lights have found a permanent residence thirty-miles south of Albuquerque at the old Fred Harvey Eating House and Museum in Belen, NM. The light show is fired up from November 24th to December 30th. And just like it’s been for the display’s many decades, admission is free to see the thousands of lights and 100-lighted Christmas trees.

Courtesy Keith Kofford

Trading Post


Marooned on a long abandoned segment of Route 66 east of the Petrified Forest National Park, the forlorn ruins of the Painted Desert Trading Post, perched atop a rocky knoll overlooking the Dead River and a picturesque highway bridge, seem an unlikely cornerstone for a preservationist movement. Abandoned and left to the elements since the mid-1950s, the old trading post has become a destination in the era of renaissance. Now it has become a model for a new era of preservation.

This past spring the Route 66 Co-op was formed to acquire the property, stabilize the remaining trading post structure and preserve key historical aspects located on the property. The Co-op is comprised of Richard Dinkela (known in the Route 66 community as Roamin’ Rich), Kenneth Krauss, Jim Ross, Shellee Graham, Professor Nick Gerlich, Mike Ward, Frank Maloney, Ryan Maloney, Steve Rider, Richard Walker, Judy Walker, and David Wickline.

Courtesy Jim Hinkley


The Fall 2018 issue of Route 66 Magazine, top of page 22: The Spooky Sixty-Six story mistakenly places Holbrook Navajo Country Courthouse in New Mexico, instead of Arizona.

Courtesy author Tom Lohr


After being vacant since 2005 and being under renovation since 2016, Albuquerque, New Mexico’s old El Vado Motel had its grand reopening July 20, 2018.

The $18 million redevelopment has transformed the 1937 motel complex into a twenty-two-room boutique motel that includes an events center, courtyard, pool, shops and restaurants. The rooms, ranging in price from $131 to $173, are decorated with mid-century, locally handmade furnishings.

The property’s major makeover took longer than expected due to soil conditions and underground utilities problems, and had originally been slated to open in the fall of 2017.After the last owner expressed the desire to demolish the property the city stepped in bought it for $2 million in 2010.

In 1993, the original motel was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as being one of the best examples of pre-World War II motels in the state. It’s also the oldest tourist court left on the city’s Central Avenue. The iconic neon sign was brought back to life in early 2017, and for the first time in many years, once again is shining its colors on old Route 66.

Courtesy Keith Kofford

El Vado Motel

Legal Tender Saloon


Fred Harvey hotel entrepreneur Allen Affeldt, has given the small, northern New Mexico community of Lamy a financial shot in the arm. Affeldt, owner-restorer of the old Harvey hotels of La Posada in Winslow, Arizona and the Castaneda in Las Vegas, New Mexico, announced in July 2018 that he has acquired Lamy’s Legal Tender building. The historic property, which comprises the Legal Tender Saloon and the Lamy Railroad and History Museum, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The place was constructed in 1881 and operated as a saloon and brothel. Becoming a general store for a short time, it reverted back to being a saloon. Its oak bar, brought over from Germany in 1884, has been called one of the most beautiful in the state. In acquiring the property, Affeldt also became the owner of a nearby parked Pullman dining car that once housed a cafe. It and the Legal Tender closed down about two years ago.

Since the property had been donated in 2006 to the non- profit railroad museum, no money was involved in the Affeldt acquisition. The museum board disbanded and everything was transferred to Affeldt’s nonprofit Winslow Arts Trust.

Affeldt also expressed interest in restarting the Santa Fe Southern Railway which shut down in 2014 although the train wasn’t included in the deal. The shortline railroad ran the eighteen miles between Santa Fe and Lamy carrying passengers/tourists and freight.

The Legal Tender, previously known as the Pink Garter, was popular in the 1940s and 1950s, and was renamed the Legal Tender in the 1970s after being remodeled.

About a half-hour southeast of Santa Fe and less than ten miles from the original Route 66 alignment named the Santa Fe Loop, Lamy was the location of another Fred Harvey Hotel, the El Ortiz, from 1910 to 1938, demolished in 1943. The community is currently a stop on Amtrak’s Southwest Chief passenger trains but is in danger of losing its station. Amtrak has threatened to close its passenger rail service, for financial reasons, between Dodge City, Kansas, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, and put train passengers on chartered buses for that 500-mile gap. The Chief runs from Chicago to Los Angeles and once it hits Las Vegas, NM, it generally follows Route 66 the rest of the way west.

Courtesy Keith Kofford