Route 66 On The Air
W6A - Santa Monica and W6B - Los Angeles
9 - 17 September 2023
The 24th Anniversary of this Amateur Radio Special Event
Celebrating the 97th Anniversary of Route 66

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Route 66 History
US Highway 66, established in 1926, was the first major improved highway to link the west coast with the nationís heartland. Through stories, songs, and TV shows, the highway came to symbolize the spirit of freedom of the open road, inspiring many to see America. However, the demise of Route 66 began in the 1950s as the US began building its interstate highway system, and the highway was officially decommissioned in 1986. Nonetheless, small portions of Highway 66 still exist in towns and rural areas in several states.

Ham Radio Special Event

The first occurrence of Route 66 On the Air took place in the fall of 2000, generating more than 14,000 QSOs in the process. Read all about the history of the special event from the May 2001, QST article "Get Your QSOs on Route 66" (Requires Adobe PDF)


Music from Route 66
Route 66 has been popularized in numerous versions of the popular song from the original Bobby Troup version to the later hit by Nat King Cole.


"Get Your Kicks On Route 66" by Bobby Troup

If you ever plan to motor west
Travel my way, take the highway that's the best
Get your kicks on Route 66.
It winds from Chicago to L.A.
More than 2,000 miles all the way
Get your kicks on Route 66. 
You go through St. Louie, Joplin, Missouri
And Oklahoma City looks mighty pretty.
You'll see Amarillo, Gallup, New Mexico
Flagstaff, Arizona, don't forget Winona
Kingman, Barstow, San Bernardino.
Won't you get hip to this timely tip
When you make that California trip
Get your kicks on Route 66.


  Nat King Cole hit with "Route 66" in 1946


Western swing band, Asleep at the Wheel pays homage
to a timeless classic, "Route 66"



Another Asleep At The Wheel version - "Get Your Kicks (On Route 66)"
[Live from Austin, TX] That's Leon Rausch sharing the vocals with Ray Benson. Rausch was part of Bob Wills Texas Playboys.


The Route 66 TV Program aired 116 Episodes From
October 7, 1960 through Septemb18, 1964.
The hour-long drama starred Martin Milner as Tod Stiles and George Maharis as Buzz Murdoch, two young guys who travel around in a 1960 Corvette convertible in search of adventure and enlightenment. Along the way they encounter a host of outcasts and ordinary people entangled in conflicts - eventually traveling to almost every city along the run of Route 66. 



One of the joys of driving Route 66 back in those good 'ol days was reading the Burma-Shave signs by the side of the road. One after another, they told a little upbeat story, all with the punch line "Burma-Shave." 


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