Our Braided Trails

HIGHWAY TRAVEL WRITER LORRIE FLEMING

SPEAK IN A SILENT LANGUAGE THAT WHISPERS SOFTLY INTO THE WINDS OF TIME

…Our History Speaks Through a Land of Braided Trails…

            Let’s all join hearts-to-hands with land-to-legends in celebration of our transportation network carved by the toil of our ancestral trail blazers & pioneers setting the course toward unlimited travel. Transcending gravel & grit churned into gold mixed with the aggregate will of human spirit, our land is hereditary by a blend of people with a purpose and a common sense of place to call ‘home’. 

Our shared cultural values woven into a westward migration is galvanized by a sense of wonderment and mutual respect in search of a new frontier.  The determination and hunger of these eager voyagers held the key to survival and the courage to set their future in motion into a vast landmass.  

Testament to the perseverance of those early pioneers, our two nations (Canada & USA) pay tribute & homage in their honor.  In September 2021 the calendar was marked in permanent ink to celebrate a Century Milestone of the ‘International Peace Arch Monument’ situated on the median between Blaine Washington and Surrey, BC, standing noble to protect humankind.  

Backtracking to our grassroots, the northern supply chain of the Oregon Trail Network (of 1856-68) and it’s early origins is deeply rooted into two nations.   The BC Grasslands became known as a prime cattle route recognized as the ‘Okanagan Trail’ and lies in the Okanagan Valley on both sides of the US Border.  The Oregon Territory was greatly valuable to both the US & Britain as a powerful economic driver.  American cattlemen and traders brought cattle, freight, and culture (a refined understanding of humankind) into the B.C. Interior and became the main supply corridor into the BC Gold Rush (of 1858 and onward).  The O’Keefe Ranch became a clearinghouse for the cattle to feed the multitude of miners and pioneers that permeated into the BC Goldfields.    

History portrays that BC was built on American economic might; however, lest we forget the First Nations Peoples that cultivated these trails over many thousands of years.  The Oregon Treaty of 1846 signed between the US and Britain set a national policy for a shared right of passage and speaks to the shared pasts of Canada & USA, 

 The Oregon Treaty of 1846 was the impetus of setting the US and British North American border at the 49th Parallel.  Yes indeed, our history speaks through a silent language that echoes far beneath the borderless ground.  

Stretching the ‘Mother Lode’ of the BC Goldfields, spreading southbound to the Mother Road, our international connective hearts shape a long & winding umbilical cord into a bloodline galvanized by a shared cultural heritage.   Road trips are equivalent to human wings, may the energy of youth take flight and set our sights into the future…A paraphrase from “Travels with Charley In Search of America” by Master Literary John Steinbeck… “A journey is a person in itself, no two are alike, we do not take 

ART ROUTE BLUE FOLLOWERS


Here we are in Banff National Park – a perfect reflection of our Heritage in true blue!  Just had coffee ☕️  at The Good Earth Brew and the gratuities mug featured the words ‘United by Blue”!  How appropriate on this momentous day in honor of Route Blue’s Birthday!
Love you
Lorrie
Video to follow – stay tuned…   

Passage of Time

A QUARTER CENTURY JOURNEY STEMS FROM THE MOTHER ROAD

Honoring the Aggregate of People, Places & Purpose

Penned by Lorrie Fleming – June 21, 2021, Acknowledging the Summer Solstice

            The Journey is an extension of our ‘family tree’ that sprouts, branches, and evolves through the people that we meet along the way.  Collectively chartering a course to reach quantitative destinations in our lifetime.  Literary mastermind John Steinbeck said it best, “A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike”.  

            The wisdom of elders, the power of decision makers, leadership, and mentorship in collaboration with the energy of youth is the synergy that defines and connects our crossroads. When someone randomly crosses our path, even just for a moment, they become a permanent part of our life’s pathway.  

            Thoughts of many hearts & hands transport me back to the founding epoch of the Canadian Route 66 Association and to the notables who inspired, counselled, and motivated the will for me to develop the skillset to generate this worldwide phenomenon.   Firstly, the initiative sparked by being touched by Angel Delgadillo, who pioneered the State of Arizona to recognize Route 66 as historic significance.

Many folks thereafter reached out to chart a map for Bob & I to follow, drawing the course of this untapped domain.  Social supporters and confidence building started by a phone call to the City of Victoria, BC Societies Agency where the Clerk asked me to explain the purpose of marrying a US highway into Canada?  The answer to the question became clear, ‘Route 99’ is the thread to connect our two nations with the Mother Road.

            A trip to Chicago in 1996 connected hearts at the recognized starting point of Michigan Ave and Jackson Blvd, touted as “The True Beginning of Route 66”.  This intersection became the impetus to meeting notables accredited with spearheading the Historic Association of Illinois.  Tom Teague the Founding President of the Illinois Route 66 Association, Editor of the 66 News and esteemed author of “Searching for 66” spontaneously met Bob & I in Springfield and shared a wealth of advice to take back home with us.

            Garnering this advice, and after achieving incorporation status of the Canadian Route 66 Association, a trip to California in 1997 led our paths to crossover with David & Mary Lou Knudson, the Founders of the National Historic Route 66 Federation, dedicated to promoting & preserving “Main Street of America”.  At an introduction meeting on Foothill Blvd (an original portion of Route 66 in California), the Knudson’s opened the gateway to an everlasting connection with Canada.  In 2001, renowned Canadian Muralist, Michelle Loughery was commissioned to set in motion the Official Route 66 Mural City designation in Cuba, Missouri, that continues to spread its colorful wings decades later.

            In Art we shall grow, the combined wisdom of the Knudson’s and the clear vision of Michelle’s artistic eye has evolved into a two-nation quest to extend the will to preserve & propagate the Mother Road as an International Art Route, and a continual conduit to showcase the storyline linking our heritage keepers by a bridge of connectivity.   Hand-to-Land Art is key to unlock the borders and to set the future in focus toward an Art Route corridor that can be experienced literally, physically, and digitally!  

            Great Gateways are paramount in welcoming travelers, extending from the Santa Monica Pier at California’s Pacific Coast, the official end of Route 66, up to the Peace Arch Monument on Route 99 that shines at the borderline between Blaine, Washington and Surrey, British Columbia.  

Important Footnote:

In California, Route 66 turns south out of Eagle Rock (a neighborhood of northeast Los Angeles, located between the cities of Glendale and Pasadena) where Route 66 joins US-99.  This intersection is the Gateway to the “Canada-California Connection.”  

A person standing next to a sign

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 Photo Courtesy of Bob Walker taken June, 2016 in Alexandria Virginia along the Historic National Road Tour organized by the Lincoln Highway Association

SUNFLOWER SALUTE

DEDICATED TO OUR CULTURAL HISTORY KEEPERS

LORRIE FLEMING – APRIL 26, 2020

2020

Inspired by a Conversation with Michelle on Our Cultural History Keepers

SUNFLOWER SALUTE

A Unified Face of Humanity Graced by a Smile

Natures Storytellers and Pillars of Peace

Narrative by Lorrie Fleming to Welcome Summertime…

Natures’ emblematic ‘face of hope’, Sunflowers are an expression of happiness that symbolize adoration, loyalty, strength and longevity. Known for its distinguishing trait that stems from its root word (sun) ~ embodies energy, joy and happiness in the advent of summer. It remains a fact that no flower can lift someone’s spirit like a sunflower!

Tracing its roots, Sunflowers originated in the Americas (1,000 BC), and were cultivated as a valuable food source for centuries. With the European exploration of the ‘New World”, the flowers’ popularity spread as the world began to appreciate and recognize its beauty & sustenance bearing a sun- like appearance that radiates an invitation to summer. Sourced for their seeds, the sunflower reflects so many of the sun’s positive characteristics of life. Freshly picked from sunbeams and caught by the eyes of Artists who loved to capture sunflowers as a motif of splendor in various genres throughout ancient times; also revered as sacred & inspirational in ceremonies of aboriginal societies.

Today, the sunflower remains admired for its sunny charm & delightful disposition. It is no wonder this sacred flower was chosen to personify the “The Sunflower Project”, spearheaded by Master Muralist (Michelle) as a historical honor in recognition of the countless Canadian men, women and children of Ukrainian & European origins that were imprisoned at internment camps across Canada during WWI. The murals, commencing with the Sunflower Painting in downtown Vernon, BC combines multi-media, traditional artwork as well as historical photos & personal stories shared by loved ones directly affected in various communities across Canada.

File Name: Sunflower Salute by Lorrie Fleming – April 26, 2020

Inspired by a Conversation with Michelle on Our Cultural History Keepers (The Sunflower State)

Regarded as the “Sunflower State, Kansas in Midwest USA bordered by Missouri on the east and Oklahoma on the south, morphed into it’s namesake emblem to honor the early settlers that fed the seeds to their poultry along the Santa Fe Trail. Hence the Sunflower was officially signed into legislation as a unique & cherished State Symbol. In the southeastern corner of Kansas State, Old Route 66 passes through a brief section [of 13 miles] on its way between Joplin, Missouri and Miami Oklahoma. This is observed as the “shortest stretch of the popular Route between Chicago & LA and is among the best- preserved portions of highway featuring many Roadside Attractions. The vintage buildings of Galena KS, near the MO State Line, inspired Pixar to choose this iconic place as the fictional community of ‘Radiator Springs’ and its beloved character “Tow Mater”.

(Four Women on the Route)

The Kan-O-Tex Service Station on Old Route 66 is a 1920’s building lovingly restored and converted into a Route 66 Café by {Four Women of the Route – Betty, Melba, Renee & Judy}. Collectively, they facilitated the rebirth of Galena’s stretch of Historic Route 66 and dubbed the iconic Gas Station “Four Women on the Road” operated as a tourist attraction for several years. Ownership changed and today it is named “Cars on the Route” with the emphasis on the connection to the Movie CARS. The 1951 International boom truck next to the Kan-O-Tex Service Station was the impetus of the depicted ‘Tow Mater’ character that contributed greatly to the movie’s success.

BLUE TECH


My Blue Ladies:

Our official affiliation with Route 66 gives us the credibility of international status as heritage highway advocates.  

Art is the ‘Mother’ that makes us equal … Blue symbolizes The People, a product of the stories ~ Gold is the business.  Without one, there is no other!  Take one component away and none remain…Basic ethics of physics must apply (or) the structure crumbles.

Together, we have the power to drive commerce in a shared economy of a national scope by forming an inclusive alliance to honor the resilience of people, the survivors & builders of our transportation hub.  

A ‘Prism’ is what we must become – a solid geometric figure that follows equal and parallel rectilinear paths.

Go National!  Art Route Blue owns its product and is the virtual Heart of Art and the assets of stories that equate to its success.

The process will prove itself and roll out by the integrity of the Crescendo (highest point) within the Voice of Art.

Create a pictorial of places (visual) in concert with the voice (audio) on The Field of Dreams platform – build it – they will come!  

We live in the Rural with a national focus.The power of Art, creates its own mood to interject with the Alliance and Talk to the Walls; and they in turn will tell the story.

It’s time to Create a Market Plan, Build the Pod Cast and showcase the peoples’  playground that will capture our strength for the voice over art to ‘align’ the stories and turn them to Gold!


In Art We Trust-LORRIE FLEMMING

AR:T Route Blue ROAD REPORT

…Here we are at the start point of the legendary Cariboo Wagon Road that carved a permanent place on Canada’s Western Frontier.  A major transportation hub from fur trails-to-steel rails echoing tales of BC’s historic significance to carry our nation through the ages.  Our history speaks in many languages…Listen quietly, you will be amazed at what you may hear between the timelines of travel!
Lorrie,
Tracing our Trails

Michelle:
Your articulate words speak succinctly to the integrity of your leadership.  An educator, motivator, coach and servant leader (the list is endless)!
Our Society is blessed by your contribution to inspire humankind.  
My heart is touched by you!
Lorrie
Road Mother

Braiding the Blue

Weaving a Legacy into our Transportation Tapestry

Humankind ~ The Heart of our Heritage

         Our heritage speaks succinctly through this land of braided trails! Spreading the spirit of humanity by virtue of echoes, the voices of wisdom resonates time-after-time to move us forward.  The eye of the needle is threaded deep within the heart of our heritage and the soul of humankind stands monumental between the spaces of our past.  

         The ‘Heart of our Heritage’ is deeply rooted and resides within the lineage of Highway One [Canada’s Mother Road] and its multiple ribbon of crossroads threading timeless vestiges into the fabric of society, silently occupying the spaces between cities, townships, villages and national treasures. 

Public Art” is the universal equalizer that stands stately within the soul of humankind and connects art-to-rural-to-roads, via a visual conduit to engage inhabitants of vastly far reaching communities into the mainstream of social opportunity.

         “Art Route Blue” defines the spirit of our braided links and holds ‘no’ visible physical boundaries.  Magically, out of our past appears a path to the future engrained by the positive power of people, place and purpose.  Our mission is to generate an all-inclusive corridor to showcase the value of our past, infused & integrated with endless possibilities along a borderless Heritage Highway.  

Accredit is hereby extended to the Creator of Art Route Blue, Master Artist Michelle and her adept Colleague (Stacey) who collaboratively set ‘Art-in-Motion’ for the next generation of travelers to embark on a Dynamic Digital Art Augmentation to add the voice-over-art to enhance the integrity of Canada’s Mother Road!

Lacing the Legend into our Nation’s Braided Broadcloth …

Finding New Roads!

Lorrie Fleming,

A Pilar of the Blue Team and Canadian Route 66 Association Founder

AR:T ROUTE CANADA

Art and beauty comes in many forms, including the natural and the handmade , and there’s no reason why, when admiring one, you cannot enjoy the other. And there is no reason that our modern cave masterpieces should not be showcased as invitations for the globe to visit and meander along our highways. The bonus is that travellers can fill the art stops in with small business and community events along the way. Connecting our communities makes sense. Like a giant story book. And it makes more sense if a highway art project like ART ROUTE BLUE is launched with artists and grassroots communities. To keep the jobs, make connections and bring the creative economy to the rural communities and keep our young people talking to the elders. This is a people up road trip. The Canadian Version of ROUTE 66. This art trip is long standing in its vision. Held dear by many and led by Queen of the Road Lorrie Flemming. I am just the conductor and the painter who got to paint way before murals became the explosion of trend that are now. Or maybe these modern cave drawings have always been a huge part of the education and history making of the stories of the people and of nature as we all ride the highway of life. Our Destination Mural Town Art Route is a global grid. It has many more layers to unravel and we are excited as many are using the model to bring Destination ART Routes to their regions. There is blue on those walls though! And the blue beings to the hands of the artists, the visionaries and the first people that have shared fire stories since time began. AR:T ROUTE BLUE details great work across the globe. Some of these artworks are showcased in outdoor settings, others however, are set amidst the most beautiful scenery. Take a look and see community social economics through a new lens. With a content building economy made strong by keeping the people in that system. Our stories are our art and our towns the fires that warm the rural earth. We have made ground at AR:T Route Blue. Destination Mural Town has many tourism organizations and communities abuzz. Destination Routes have been growing in rail and nature trails. Art walks have been around forever and people love to stroll through the streets seeking local treasures. But this AR:T Route is unique as the team of Blue are also trainers, educators, creators, builders, healers, connectors, first responders, homeless, nature protectors, storytellers, painters, sculptors, carvers, singers, youth, elders and all first people from the globe. This is community building from a place of renewal to reimagining. A new form of muraltourism. A content creating system that keeps the content with the creators and the power of all horses in front of one cart. The blue is the stories of many, in a place of global connection, to a system that keeps people and nature connected. Now that is reachable tourism and community economics.