Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park

Springfield, Missouri

MissouriOutdoor ActivitiesRoadside Attraction

Springfield, Missouri is officially recognized as the birthplace of Route 66. It was via telegram at a 1926 meeting of highway officials at the Colonial Hotel that Springfield businessman John T. Woodruff and Oklahoma businessman Cyrus Avery first proposed U.S. 66 as the name of the new Chicago-to-Los Angeles highway. The Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri pays respects to the city’s roots with a small pullover park packed with nostalgia.

The star attraction of this Route 66 park is a replica of the “Giant Hamburg” sign that was once a Route 66 attraction in itself. The original stood outside of a Route 66 restaurant that opened in the 1940s and is believed to be the world’s first drive through. The famous sign says Hamburg, not Hamburger as you might expect, because the owner, Sheldon “Red” Chaney, misjudged the sign’s height and didn’t have room for those last two letters without hitting power lines, so he cut it down to size. Red’s Giant Hamburg closed in 1984 and the location was torn down, but this replica pays homage to that once famous Route 66 institution. (A new Red’s Giant Hamburg recently opened after 35 years at a new location.)

While at the park you can also meander down a small walking path, see a Route 66 sign, or have lunch at a picnic table. While there isn’t much to see at the park now, plans to expand are in the works. Someday you might see here a replica gas station, motor court, Route 66 sculpture, restrooms, visitor information, and more.

Last modified: April 21, 2024
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Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction

Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park

Address:
1200 W College St, Springfield, MO 65806

Hours:
5am-11pm

Cost:
Free

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Photos of Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri

Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction
Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction
Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction
Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction
Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction
Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri Route 66 Roadside Attraction

Know Before You Go

To make the most of your visit to Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park in Springfield, Missouri, here are some things to know before you go.

  • Street parking is available, or pull through into the park for a quick stop.
  • This Missouri Route 66 roadside attraction is across the street from the College Street Great Mosaic Wall, a series of mosaic artworks paying homage to Route 66.
  • Hungry? Head to a recreated Red’s Giant Hamburg for lunch or dinner! The original location of the restaurant was located at 2848 W Chestnut Expy. It is now home to a coffee shop, Trailer Perk Coffee.

Where to Stay Near Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park

Complete your travel itinerary and get a good night’s rest on your road trip with a stay at one of these Springfield, Missouri hotels near Route 66.

Best Western Route 66 Rail Haven

After a day behind the wheel, stopping at all of the Mother Road’s iconic roadside attractions, museums, restaurants, and more, a good shower and a comfy bed is always a welcome sight. Take that and add modern amenities, vintage charm, and a touch of Elvis, and you have the Best Western Route 66 Rail Haven motel in Springfield, Missouri. Book a stay in the iconic Elvis Suite for a unique night!

Rockwood Motor Court

Rockwood Motor Court opened as a Tourist Camp in 1929, just three years after Route 66 was commissioned. Renovated in 2019, you’ll enjoy clean and comfortable rooms themed to eras of Route 66 with vintage décor, furniture, and memorabilia.

Rest Haven Court

Rest Haven Court is a classic motor hotel in Springfield, Missouri. Look for the bright neon sign with the big neon arrow. It was erected in 1953!

Attractions Near Birthplace of Route 66 Roadside Park

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