Midway Point of Route 66

Historic Route 66, often referred to as the “Mother Road” of the United States, was originally 2,448 miles long before new routes and links were established along the highway. While Route 66 was not the longest nor the oldest road in the nation, it was the shortest route of transportation from the west to the east coasts and vice versa as well as the first paved road in the U.S. that was fully paved by the 1930s. It began in Chicago, IL and ended in Santa Monica, Los Angeles, CA. The towns Route 66 made its way through became flooded with business and tourist attractions began popping up all over such as Amarillo’s The Big Texan Steak Ranch & Brewery. In the town of Adrian, TX, lies the midway point of the famous Route 66 which is 1,139 miles away from the endpoints of the road.

In 1926, Route 66 was commissioned for construction. A man named Cyrus Avery is notably responsible for the creation of the highway. A businessman from Tulsa, OK, Avery was convinced there was a need for better roads in his hometown. He held a position as a chairman for the state highway commission and even worked on the plans for the national system of numbered highways. In 1926, Avery’s idea for the road from Chicago to Los Angeles was approved and was officially named U.S. 66. Cyrus was responsible for the term “Main Street of America” which was coined as another name for U.S. 66 and is known as the “Father of Route 66.”

Adrian, TX is one of the locations that is present along Route 66. It serves as the midway point between the two end locations of the highway. While Route 66 did serve as a path for those looking for a new life for themselves and their families during the Great Depression, it was also a route of travel for new automobile owners to explore their home country and all it had to offer.

Containing a few interesting pieces of Route 66 history, one of these is directly related to the animated Disney movie “Cars.” Fran Houser, owner of the Adrian Cafe which underwent a name change in 1995 to the Midpoint Cafe due to its relation with the midway point of Route 66, inspired the character Flo, a café owner, in the movie. When Fran originally bought the café, she planned on turning it into an antique store, but local residents greatly opposed it, so she ran it as a café.

The café is no longer owned by Houser and has had multiple owners off and on since she sold it. Tom Snyder is the founder of the U.S. Route 66 association and reached out to Houser when she noticed a drop in business due to the increasing use of air travel as opposed to the traditional course of road travel. With little convincing, Snyder persuaded Houser to rename her café the Midpoint Cafe to showcase the unique location of the restaurant. This was a strategic move to attract more customers and soon, she started seeing German and French travelers come to her café.

Along with the café, there is also a camping ground located at this midway point where travelers can stop and pop up a tent.

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Map from Midway Point of Route 66 to Panhandle Blasting & Restoration:

Map from Midway Point of Route 66 to Ceta Canyon Camp and Retreat Center: