Blue Carpet Corridor Conference

by John Weiss

The Blue Carpet organization held a Route 66 Conference on the weekend of October 29th to the 31st. This well run event was held in Edwardsville, Illinois at the wonderfully restored Wildey theater complex. The chairman, Cheryl Jett, did an outstanding job.

Site of Blue Carpet Corridor Conference, Wildey Theater, Edwardsville, IL

An abundance of speakers and presenters were on hand to provide their expertise on various aspects of Route 66 Preservation, Promotion, Education, Insight and Enjoyment. Folks were in attendance from numerous states and other countries. If you didn’t attend you missed out on a special one-of-a-kind experience.

Participants representing four states at Blue Carpet Corridor Conference, Edwardsville, IL

Vendors were also in abundance providing a wonderful array of books and other interesting items. There were others who unselfishly came just to provide and show their extensive private collections for all to enjoy.

Illinois Route 66 Association booth at Blue Carpet Corridor Conference

Most Route 66 Associations were in attendance. The Illinois Association was represented by Joanna Joven. Elaine Stonich from the Joliet Museum volunteered her assistance throughout the event. Preservation Chairman John Weiss teamed up with Terri Ryburn to explain and speak about Preservation efforts and concepts.

Cheryl Jett, Kaisa Barthuli, John Weiss & Terri Ryburn at Blue Carpet Corridor Conference, Edwardsville, IL

Handmade plaque presented to John Weiss w/ Sharon Ward & Joanna Joven

The evenings were also well planned. On the arranged Pub Crawl one night, our own Terri Ryburn did a full one hour hilarious standup comedy routine that left everyone smiling and laughing. She was GREAT!

The fantastic Route 66 Road Crew band provided first class entertainment on stage one of the evenings. On the evening of Halloween there was a party where many attended in costume. An open bar and costume contest was well received and fun.

Joanna Joven in costume at Halloween party, Blue Carpet Corridor Conference, Edwardsville, IL

It will be hard to match or exceed this full event program. However the White Carpet Corridor will try to do so next year in the Blooming/Normal area. Terri Ryburn will be the event chairman. Stay tuned for more information. Be sure to plan on attending in September. It is bound to be spectacular.

(All photos courtesy John Weiss)

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