AR:T ROUTE CANADA

SISTERS OF THE MOTHER ROAD

A SALUTE TO EXPLORE GOLD COUNTRY TO HONOR OUR LINEAR COMMUNITIES

Penned by Lorrie Fleming April 27, 2020

            As the world struggles with climate change, economic adversity and the silent enemy of the COVID-19 pandemic, humanity awaits to reconnect, as social distancing becomes a distant point in time.

            Recently, I shared a surprising & joyful conversation with Cathryn Wilson, of the BC Achievement Foundation, to relay news of my nomination for a Community Award; and it still seems surreal!    In that regard, I am equally humbled, honored and overcome by a feeling that I have reached a juncture along this epic journey to unite the ‘Mother Road’ with BC’s ‘Gold Rush Road’.  An International Art Gateway Project envisioned & created by Master Muralist Michael Loughery is being considered to connect Rural BC along a borderless & cultural journey.  This would include portions of the TCH #1 and [Route 66, 97 & 99] adjoined as one linear community.  

            I remain speechless!  “Sometimes historic paths aren’t discovered until they’re lost”!   Such meaningful words of wisdom notated by a fellow Route 66 aficionado (Anthony Arno).  In my viewpoint of traveling on a road for so long, daylight fades into sunset; and you find yourself following headlights into the unknown.  Somewhere along the way dawns new light cast by living angels to guide us back on track.  I’m referring to my “Sisters of the Mother Road” (Michelle & Stacey creators of ‘Art Route Blue’ and Marcie & her team at ‘Explore Gold Country’).  Special acknowledgement is directed to folks like Steve & Paulette Rice, proprietors of the Historic Packinghouse Eatery, who meet & greet hungry travelers embarking on a scenic journey along an original portion of TCH roadway in Spences Bridge!

            A renown writer quoted “Not all those who wander are lost”; and I believe that we’re all just searching for a new path worth traveling!   Perhaps it’s passion that drives us to find a special place on the road.  Speaking of myself, I can neither sing, dance nor draw, but somehow the people that crossed my path (namely Michelle & Her Creatives) collectively transfer passion into energy driven by the perpetual Power of Art!  Therein lies a permanent bond to greet travelers by painted walls and voice over techniques hearing storytellers that awaken our spirits along a linear community linked by a connective corridor of neighborhoods, families and friendships.    

            Together, we’re traveling in the same direction guided by the power of passion, people & planet.  In an uplifting transformation, the ‘Mother Road meets the Mother Lode’ and we become a family.  Travel the road slowly, stop or stay to live & learn and cross the bridge of knowledge that connects the urban & rural.  Our Ancestors shall rise and show us the way… “Wisdom is the Sunlight of the Soul”! 

A lost road will remember your footsteps, for someday you may wish to return to trace the way

{Quote by Munia Khan}

LINEAR COMMUNITIES & Old is New Thematic CORRIDORS Driving A New Creative Recovery Vision By Connecting-The-Arts. .spots

RURAL REVIVAL ELEVATED TO AN ART! SPREADING SEEDS TO SUCCESS

Narrative by Lorrie Fleming
From the Diary of a Seasoned Traveler along the Roads Less Traveled…

Our highways are the stimulus to steer a renewed and creative sense of place into the heartland of our rural communities. The creative augmented reality of connecting ‘art-in-motion’ is moving closer to actuality, staged along an existing lifeline of humanity surviving between faded gridlines of our highways & byways. A fresh coat of paint is a clear solution to refresh the hopes of humanity living in small towns faced by the reality of a sluggish economy. Survival in the confines of these small towns, hidden in the shadows of cities and seemingly lost between the spaces of our society, remain to be a constant challenge and “takes a village” to achieve a renewed sense of permanence for their future. Reinventing themselves with a creative new image brushed by an injection of hand-to-land artwork stimulates sustainability for a fulfilling & healthful lifestyle that may silently be embedded within its existing foundation & infrastructure.

In the wisdom of others who have faced similar challenges in the advent of Main Streets becoming obsolete by freeways, Route 66 communities (described as a 2,448-mile linear village) was reawakened by the spirit of the folks who refused to let their towns disappear into the sunset. A rebirth of Rural America was born, and a renaissance movement began to rekindle the value of small towns and welcome back a new generation of travelers to experience the journey.

The spirited town of Seligman, after years of economic deprivation of being bypassed by a superhighway, Route 66 in a portion of Arizona State was designated a “Historic Corridor”. This amazing feat was resultant of the determination and drive of ‘The Road Guardian’, Angel Delgadillo (The Founder of the Arizona Historic Route 66 Association) and the citizens who remain proud to call the town of Seligman their home. Arizona is accredited to holding the longest remaining unbroken (158 mile) stretch of Route 66; and the preservation efforts speak to its beholden history and to the vibrant future on the road ahead.

To commemorate this historic title to honor Route 66 from Seligman to Kingman situated along this proclaimed longest stretch of remaining uninterrupted portion of the road in Arizona State, the townsites hosted a ‘Fun Run’ auto event and invited the world to celebrate the rebirth of “Historic Route 66”. The first Route 66 Fun Run was held in 1988 and every year in May, Route 66 enthusiasts worldwide continue to gather to celebrate ‘The Mother Road’ revival and the unique communities that make it a linear destination!

Back here at home in Rural BC, as direct descendants of the Mother Road, we are poised to

reach out to linear communities along Route 97 & 99 joining (TCH – Route One) corridors to broaden our

scope along BC’s heritage highways. Route 66 is the cohesive exemplary paradigm to drive the Rural Revival February 22, 2020

2

consciousness of travelers onward & upward to BC, reaching the Gold Rush & First Nations Trails to enjoy the drive and savor the experience that exists ‘borderless by nature’.

Art Route Blue flows in harmony with scenic & vintage portions of Canada’s Mother Road (TCH) and its connecting crossroads. An ‘Art Route Parkway’ is the vein of The Mother Road, a natural bloodline bred to promote, protect and energize historic & cultural travel and encompass inclusivity (of all ethnic origins) to embark on the ultimate North American Gateway to ‘Art-in-Motion’. Moving ahead,the Art Route deserves a place (not just a reflection in our rear-view mirror) but in the face of ourwindshield and sited on maps alongside of natural wonders and ‘must-see’ travel experiences. Art “HotSpots” laudable to be highlighted with significance and placed in the spotlight (such as parks & facades)laced along scenic parkways. Create ‘Authentic Art Gateways’ to showcase and celebrate the grandeurof outdoor canvasses bequeathed to travelers amid a creative landscape for generations to follow.

Lessons be learned from those who witnessed the downfall decades of towns & livelihoods in bust & boon economic shifts. The Mother Road shall rise like the tidewaters upon our shores and bring new life in the form of “Art”, creativity, resourcefulness and ingenuity. Let’s Celebrate a Rural Reclamation, as a piece of Canada’s Heritage that’s sitting on the leading edge of ‘art-in-motion’. Follow in the steps of the Guardian of Route 66 (Angel Delgadillo) who spearheaded & shepherded America’s Main Street back from the ashes through to the ages!

In closing, the cover photo features the Route 66 Fun Run cavalcade heading west of Seligman (the Birthplace of Historic Route 66), and reminiscent of one of my favorite heritage sites, Spences Bridge, once a traveler’s hub along the Trans Canada Highway, now a prime “Art Parkway” awaiting for the tide- to-turn toward a creative economic reboot for Rural BC. Dream ~ Draw and Drive it!

Behold the Blueline

A Moving Force…

Penned in the Power of Blue

By L. Fleming – 2019

Michelle’s sense of creativity is once again ‘endowed with vision’…  The newly minted ‘Blueline’ is akin to Canada Geese!  Defined as hovering avatars in V-shape flight, following geomagnetic lines of energy, wheeling together in a magnetic force to direct flight paths.  Migratory Birds possess a built-in “map & compass” to navigate directional lines in a natural magnetic field.

Drawn by the blue line of the sky and aligned by the stars, birds map out their local environs using physical landmarks synchronized with an inherent compass set in unified balance.  Revolving along an invisible & protective ‘axis’, the Blueline shield safeguards and embodies “Route Blue”.  This center line that levitates in our tracks gives symmetry and balance to elements (such as works of art) in a harmonious direction of travel.

In every language, symmetry refers to a main line of motion in an alliance of power.  To promote and maintain mutual interests, the ‘Blueline’ transfers a sense of equilibrium in proportion to geometric lines of energy to align unique purposes of travel.  Steeped in the Spirit of Blue [the color of sea & sky], the ‘Blueline’ symbolizes depth, trust & wisdom and is beneficial to the mind, body & soul of our universe.

I wholeheartedly relate to Michelle’s ‘Blueline’ as testament to the power of verse, as quoted in reference to poetry of {Wild Geese} being in a capacity to speak so deeply to so many types of people & human characteristics.  Moreover, to honor the words of singer/songwriter {Joni Mitchell’s} beautifully crafted song entitled “Urge for Going” …

 

May the ‘Blueline’ carry us to boundless destinations along our braided trails!

Soaring in the Spirit of Blue,

Lorrie Fleming

In celebration of 2019, A Boldly Blue Year

Prelude to Behold the Blueline

My perspective of Michelle’s ‘Blueline’ connotes an imaginary (yet tangible) spatial map acting as a pivotal and omnipresent overhead guideway to synchronize national interests with a multi-national scope.  The Blueline sets the course and we (the travelers) follow our hearts along a connective path to fulfill the journey…

“Purpose is the reason you journey.

Passion is the fire that lights the way” (Author Unknown)

Going Blue

2018 – Going Blue…

 

Written by Lorrie Fleming – January 2018

 

. . . The Sky’s the limit…Michelle’s incredible dream takes a positive hue, driving the color wheel to a new beginning!  Route Blue Highway, a movement to celebrate the creative art of the ‘hand-to-land’ initiative, entwined with a heart-to-heart spirit.  So true are the famous words of wisdom of a great philosopher ~ “What lies behind you and what lies ahead of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside you”! {Ralph Waldo Emerson}

A history lesson is a voice from our past that echoes a passage to the future bequeath to us through a gateway built by the wisdom & experience of early travelers along life’s highway.  Akin to Michelle, following the braided paths of women trail blazers who ventured & braved our early ‘open’ roads, one intrepid adventurer wrote “My advice to timid motorists is “GO”!    These early pioneers of travel paved the way in time for others to embark on a similar journey.

Michelle’s vision of travel goes far beyond the landscape, in her viewpoint, ‘Route Blue Highway’ draws a map to a sense of place that captures the hearts of all humanity on a never-ending journey through a viaduct of art, carrying stories in a timeless visual journal.

This unique “Ribbon of Blue” is a bridge to our past, encompassing an amazing journey that awaits at each stop point of discovery.  Sometimes, it’s the journey that teaches you a lot about your destination (Drake).

Henceforth, “Here’s to you”, Michelle for faithfully believing in your aspirations and working your magic to create this dedicated highway for humanity of all hues that’s paved with purpose, powered by people and etched in the permanence of “art’!

{I leave you with excerpts of a mission statement from my colleagues of the Route 66 Association of Illinois ~ “Preservation is the means by which the past is linked to the present for the future.  Our association combines creative thinking with a ‘can do’ attitude” …}

Written from my heart, through the power of blue,

Lorrie

“One for the Road”

ROUTE BLUE CHAMPION-Lorrie Flemming

“Riding the Blue Wave”

The Mother Road Empowered by Route Blue

 

Written by Lorrie Fleming – for The Blue Renew Exhibit in Kelowna, BC – January 2018

 

Michelle & I have been riding this ‘wave’ together for the past 17 years!  I, the traveler with a keen sense of place; and Michelle, a true champion of the arts and visionary applying her depth of field on the ‘walls of time’.  In 2001, Michelle was commissioned to paint the first of a twelve-mural project in Cuba Missouri, that set-in-motion the state legislature to officially designate the town as a ‘Route 66 Mural City’.  Together, we pledged to find a way to mirror the success of Route 66; and set it on a new cross-border path into the heartland of B.C.

Humanity has no Borders…A natural & special bond, glued & set between Michelle & I, drawn together by The Mother Road, that (in all its glory), lead the nation in a transformation movement of ‘going back to its roots’ and reinventing itself as a National Historic Highway.  Fueled by a shared desire to connect Route 66 with BC and spillover, setting it on a northbound trajectory, Michelle envisioned a crossroad, parallel to the sky, a ubiquitous guideway for all humanity to follow; and she named this analogy “Route Blue”!  Michelle adds a breath of life to her visionary quest of Route Blue by introducing the majestic & powerful bloodlines of a “Blue Horse” to move us forward with wisdom & grace.

In the true spirt of the Horse…Symbolic of movement, travel and desire, Michelle is garnering a partnership to build an international community through an extension of “The Mother Road”.  To tie it all together, like dots on a map, it takes a visionary (such as Michelle) to channel a positive direction and to overcome any barriers that may block our passage.   Moreover, it takes a team of likeminded enthusiasts to carry this effort to the next level.  (“Teamwork Drives the Dream”) …  and I must add, [Stacey is to be recognized as a vital driving force in steering this movement]!

Route 66 Mentorship

Jim Conkle:  A fellow highway enthusiast and special colleague of ours, renown as the national spokesperson for Route 66, recognizes the fact that The Mother Road passes through eight states on its linear path across the nation.  But, Jim truly believes there are (9) states on this journey; and the ninth is “The State of Mind”!

Rick Antonson:   Former President and CEO of Tourism Vancouver, world traveler and author of five books (including Route 66 Still Kicks – Driving America’s Main Street), kindly contributes this statement to honor Route Blue… “The time-honoured phrase “One for the road” gets nicely paraphrased when Route 66 enters the discussion as it becomes “All for the road” since everyone has a common sense that the road mattered, matters and will always matter — as it continues to lead us to interesting mindsets and places, and to inspire fascinating art such as route-blue-buoy”.

 

The world needs dreamers and the world needs doers.

But above all, the world needs dreamers who do!”

{Sarah Ban Breathnach ~ American Author, Philanthropist & Public Speaker}

IMG_1282

2018 – Going Blue…

Honoring a True-Blue Visionary ~ Michelle Loughery

 

Written by Lorrie Fleming – January 2018

 

. . . The Sky’s the limit…Michelle’s incredible dream takes a positive hue, driving the color wheel to a new beginning! Route Blue Highway, a movement to celebrate the creative art of the ‘hand-to-land’ initiative, entwined with a heart-to-heart spirit. So true are the famous words of wisdom of a great philosopher ~ “What lies behind you and what lies ahead of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside you”! {Ralph Waldo Emerson}

A history lesson is a voice from our past that echoes a passage to the future bequeath to us through a gateway built by the wisdom & experience of early travelers along life’s highway. Akin to Michelle, following the braided paths of women trail blazers who ventured & braved our early ‘open’ roads, one intrepid adventurer wrote “My advice to timid motorists is “GO”!  These early pioneers of travel paved the way in time for others to embark on a similar journey.

Michelle’s vision of travel goes far beyond the landscape, in her viewpoint, ‘Route Blue Highway’ draws a map to a sense of place that captures the hearts of all humanity on a never-ending journey through a viaduct of art, carrying stories in a timeless visual journal.

This unique “Ribbon of Blue” is a bridge to our past, encompassing an amazing journey that awaits at each stop point of discovery. Sometimes, it’s the journey that teaches you a lot about your destination (Drake).

Henceforth, “Here’s to you”, Michelle for faithfully believing in your aspirations and working your magic to create this dedicated highway for humanity of all hues that’s paved with purpose, powered by people and etched in the permanence of “art’!

{I leave you with excerpts of a mission statement from my colleagues of the Route 66 Association of Illinois ~ “Preservation is the means by which the past is linked to the present for the future. Our association combines creative thinking with a ‘can do’ attitude” …}

Written from my heart, through the power of blue,

Lorrie

“One for the Road”_MG_3131

2018 -Going Blue

Honoring a True-Blue Visionary ~ Michelle Loughery

 

Written by Lorrie Fleming – January 2018

 

. . . The Sky’s the limit…Michelle’s incredible dream takes a positive hue, driving the color wheel to a new beginning! Route Blue Highway, a movement to celebrate the creative art of the ‘hand-to-land’ initiative, entwined with a heart-to-heart spirit. So true are the famous words of wisdom of a great philosopher ~ “What lies behind you and what lies ahead of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside you”! {Ralph Waldo Emerson}

A history lesson is a voice from our past that echoes a passage to the future bequeath to us through a gateway built by the wisdom & experience of early travelers along life’s highway. Akin to Michelle, following the braided paths of women trail blazers who ventured & braved our early ‘open’ roads, one intrepid adventurer wrote “My advice to timid motorists is “GO”!  These early pioneers of travel paved the way in time for others to embark on a similar journey.

Michelle’s vision of travel goes far beyond the landscape, in her viewpoint, ‘Route Blue Highway’ draws a map to a sense of place that captures the hearts of all humanity on a never-ending journey through a viaduct of art, carrying stories in a timeless visual journal.

This unique “Ribbon of Blue” is a bridge to our past, encompassing an amazing journey that awaits at each stop point of discovery. Sometimes, it’s the journey that teaches you a lot about your destination (Drake).

Henceforth, “Here’s to you”, Michelle for faithfully believing in your aspirations and working your magic to create this dedicated highway for humanity of all hues that’s paved with purpose, powered by people and etched in the permanence of “art’!

{I leave you with excerpts of a mission statement from my colleagues of the Route 66 Association of Illinois ~ “Preservation is the means by which the past is linked to the present for the future. Our association combines creative thinking with a ‘can do’ attitude” …}

Written from my heart, through the power of blue,

Lorrie

“One for the Road”