Local communities will welcome visitors at the Blue Carpet Corridor from Saturday to Sunday, June 11 to 12.
Chatham, Virden, Girard, Carlinville, Gillespie, Staunton, Hamel, Edwardsville, Glen Carbon, Litchfield, Mount Olive, Troy and Collinsville will participate in the second annual event.
From internationally known attractions like the World’s Largest Catsup Bottle, Henry’s Rabbit Ranch and Soulsby Station to long-running festivals like Chatham’s American Legion Homecoming and Edwardsville’s Route 66 Festival, Blue Carpet Corridor weekend is the perfect weekend family trip. From vintage stops like Doc’s Soda Fountain and Weezy’s Route 66 Bar and Grill to quirky new attractions like murals and CM Studios’ A Walk with Dinosaurs, from a Cannonball Jail to a Heritage Museum to the 66th year in operation of the Sky View Drive-In, the Blue Carpet Corridor has it all.
Begin your self-guided tour anywhere along the corridor and pick up your free souvenir passport at any of 13 official Passport Stops. Travel to all the stops to get all 13 stamps. Passport Stop hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. Many of the stops will offer tourism information and directions, souvenir merchandise, work by local artisans, raffles and refreshments.
Festivals and events in many towns will feature evening entertainment. Several communities will begin their weekend festivities on Thursday or Friday evening. Watch for the white and blue signs in each community to direct you to the Passport Stop and other activities.
Photo opportunities will be plentiful at the corridor’s numerous attractions, including museums, theaters, historic sites, monuments, murals and charming town squares. Take time for shopping at the many vendor booths, antique stores, yard sales, and mom ‘n pop businesses. Enjoy a meal or a snack at a cook-off, food booth, soda fountain or roadhouse. Let the children play at the many children’s activities. See a movie, go on a carnival ride, take a tour, ride a trolley and watch a parade. Meet-and-greet an author and get a book autographed, admire classic cars, and take a selfie with a costumed character. Listen to live music and maybe do a little dancing. Collect passport stamps, souvenir T-shirts and coins, and family memories.
You’ll also find a complete schedule of events and the 2016 rack card and community map to download at bluecarpetcorridor.org. Watch for updates at facebook.com/BlueCarpetCorridor. For information, call (618) 307-5049.