Monday, 5 February 2018

Half the Fun is Getting There

Skip and I began our drive to south Texas on Wednesday morning in poor winter conditions. In spite of this, we made good time and on Day 2, we were driving by Casey (Kay-zee) IL - a town we had visited three years ago because of Burma-shave-style signs we saw along the Interstate. We wanted to see the Big Things in a Small Town.

 At that time, the concrete pad for the big rocking chair had been poured. This year, we wanted to see the completed rocking chair and also visit the yarn shop, The Yarn Studio. Last time, we were there too early in the day and the shop wasn't open. This time, we lucked out and got to see the world's largest knitting needles and crochet hook close up.

Each needle weighs 25 lb. and is 82.5mm in diameter.

They also had the circular knitting needle I needed for my Fair Isle sweater - Knitter's Pride Karbonz. I can't tell you how much smoother these needles are compared to a Clover bamboo circular. It was well worth the $14.50US price tag.

After that, we went to see the new rocking chair 
which is across the street from the world's largest wind chimes.
Last year on NBC Nightly News, Casey's quirky attractions were featured. This sign is on the main four corners of the town, right in front of The Yarn Studio.
Going the other way, we saw the world's biggest pencil
and across the street is the world's biggest mailbox.
On the way out of town, at the bank is the large coin token. There was even designated parking at the bank for this attraction.
We never did find the world's largest pitchfork.

The next day on our way out of the boot heel of Missouri, we decided to take the 'Rock and Roll Highway' through the northeastern corner of Arkansas.

The first stop we made was at the airport just north of Walnut Ridge. There, a decommissioned Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 has been converted to a restaurant - the Parachute Inn.
We decided to stop in for lunch. We were the only ones in the plane part. There was a regular restaurant area attached to it.
It really was one of the 'Wackiest Restaurants in America'.

The cockpit was open for viewing.

The burgers we had were acceptable including the deep-fried pickles, but we were really just there for the experience.

Later in Walnut Ridge proper, we walked around the town, toured the county museum, and took pictures of the posters of quilts from the Randolph County Quilt Trail on walls in the downtown area.

This gives an idea of the scale of the posters of the quilts.

Around the corner is a little park commemorating the September 1964 visit by the Beatles who landed at the airport where we had previously had lunch.

Down the street, there were several Beatles references.

We then found the 'Guitar Walk', an art installation that looks like an electric guitar. It is right beside the Amtrak station.

It is pretty amazing that Walnut Ridge is an unassuming little town of 4500+ people and has all this interesting stuff.

In spite of the stops we made, we traversed the rest of the state and crossed into Texas at about 4pm and put into Texarkana TX for the night.

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