Rockin Route 66 is Scheduled for June 2022
After a year and a half, plans to resume festivals in New Mexico begin to emerge.
Grease Inc. | Brian “Big Boy” Whitcomb
Rockin’ Route 66 is scheduled to return to Tucumcari, New Mexico, the last weekend of June, 2022. “It was a long overdue road trip”, says creator of the festival, Brian “Big Boy” Whitcomb. “We have missed the people and town of Tucumcari.” That is to say that there is a lot to be done between now and next year.
What has transpired over the last year and a half has affected us all. The one great thing noticed during the 1800 mile road trip to Tucumcari, are states are opening. People are getting out. What was a fear of living, is now a fear of not living. In other words, it is time to get back to experiencing life to the fullest and why not spend it traveling route 66?
The long drive is great. You have plenty of time to collect your thoughts. Reflect on success and review what is important to change or to update for the next big event. The stop on the trip is the created iconic gas station, Buc-ee’s. Have you not seen a Buc-ee’s? In other words, this station is a combination of a truck stop (no semi’s allowed, ironically), a hillarious version of a redneck comedy, and a mega general store. In short, Buc-ee’s creates a road trip experience like no other gas station.
Buc-ee’s is originally out of Texas. Now, the unique gas station chain opens in obscure locations along travel highways. The store provides excellent fresh prepared foods including, BBQ brisket, pulled pork, bannana pudding, and more! Their bathrooms are spotless. In addition to the over 100 gas pumps, you are in for an experience. Buc-ee’s also creates that old-time road trip experience with creative roadside billboards you remember from the 60’s. Trust me, you’re gonna stop for Buc-ee’s no matter if you need gas or not!
After the first roadside stop, next on the list is to get the mojo from Elvis. It is our routine on every trip to stop in either Tupelo, MS or Memphis, TN to see Elvis. Here we spend time getting our “mojo” on as we call it.
Subsequently, we always learn something new about the “king”. We meet people from all over the world. Furthermore, the overwhelming great feeling we get after spending time either in Tupelo or Graceland motivates the entire road trip. There are a few iconic memories in the Americana lifestyle, and including Elvis and our Route 66 festival is one of them.
As a result of years on the road, we created “The Great American Road Trip” for Rockin Route 66. Here we map out some favorite stops along the way to and from the festival. From additional iconic locations like Cadillac Ranch, to some of our favorite hidden gems like, the VW Slug Bug Ranch and Shamrock, Texas.
When we hit the route heading into Tucumcari, we know we are home. The drive through town is never as simple as some may think. We have to drive all the way through town, on end to the other. We thoroughly enjoy seeing all the stops whether we have been away for a week, three months, to unfortunately a year with the pandemic.
Our schedule was packed for the week. We had to present to the newly appointed Lodgers Tax Board our plans for the return of Rockin Route 66. There are several new board members and we need to do our part to present a clear plan and share goals of the festival.
Most certainly, it is extremely important through all our planning to include all of Tucumcari where we can. We have created a great flow to our calendar to include local businesses, and various diverse stops in town. This way, visitors can experience all that Tucumcari has to offer. There is so much more to this great place that is often overlooked.
Following the Lodgers Tax Board presentation, the final approval came the following Thursday by the City Board of Commissioners. As a result of that meeting, Rockin Route 66 was awarded another year to showcase our festival. Each commissioner thanked us following the meeting and showed gratitude for all the years we have worked along the city. Our goal is simple, expose travelers to this great town. Tucucmari is the heart of Route 66. Consequently, Rockin Route 66 is the heartbeat of Route 66.
Additional City Inclusions
After completing our first task, we spent time sitting in on other supporting meetings for the city. There is a new tourism committee that is committed to rebranding Tucumcari for tourism. It is great to see the new look and plans for what is ahead. The styling is simple and compliments the town with a New Mexico 60’s flair. A new billboard release is scheduled for release along the I-40 corridor. In addition, billboards for some of the upcoming festivals will be included in the billboard campaign.
The commissioner meeting included several local topics. One topic is the upkeep and resurfacing of roads in old town Tucumcari. Subsequently there are some challenges occurring with the construction. However, it is great to see the new streetscape taking shape. The plans are adding new street lamps and sidewalk planters. In addition, the roads are to be resurfaced and look amazing. The Mainstreet Association is working hard to draw in new business as well as creating monthly local events including Food Truck Fridays.
Following a long night, the city commissioners approved all presentations for various festivals, including Rockin Route 66. We are excited, and immediately began to work on this next year’s festival. We will be continuing to host the festival the last weekend in June. This allows families to attend the festival without competition with school scheduling.
In the Works
Therefore the plans begin. We plan to include some new additions to the festival this coming year, and will keep everyone informed. You may follow us on Facebook and/or Instagram for more details by clicking the links. Make sure to like us and follow us. Here you can see more of what we are doing behind the scenes.
We like to stay active and just as so many others, we are getting back to our routine with festivals and events. Even during our visit in Tucumcari, we got to be a part of filming of a commercial for the Roadrunner Lodge.
In short, we are excited to be back! We do have more to share and subsequently will communicate soon. We know you’ll be just as excited as we are. The last year did prove to be a challenge. Knowing that, it is also great to see how many people have overcome those challenges. We did a little reinventing. Our focus has been on creativity and new ideas that work. People are excited to get back out. Musicians are just as excited to back on stage performing for audiences live and not through videos. Artists are ready to showcase pieces they have worked on during the lockdown. So, now it’s time to get back to planning the best road trip on Route 66. So, mark those calendars now. We highly suggest to go ahead and reserve your room. The next Rockin Route 66 is going to shake, rattle, and rock the entire route.