Sunday, May 28, 2023

The longest road trip ever (part 1)

 Sorry I have not posted much lately. My brother and I took the longest road trip we've ever been on, and it wasn't all good...I've been so exhausted, and so busy sorting and prepping the pictures, that I just haven't had the time nor inclination to write. 

Over the two week period, I took more than 27,000 photos, which is more than I've taken in 35 full years of my life. Processing them has been a nightmare, too, because my laptop died on the second day of the trip, meaning I couldn't work on them at all.

We visited 10 museums on the trip, including one I've been wanting to go to for more than 20 years. Even though we got home on May 13th, the photos have not finished uploading to Fotki yet...

So, here we go. On Day 1, we left home in New York and drove to Dayton, Ohio.

This is Columbus
In Springfield, the skies opened up and we got heavy rain...that would be a near constant on our trip.

The second day was probably the best day of the trip.
We started by visiting Xenia, Ohio, a place I've always wanted to go to because it's name starts with X, the only place truly feasible for me to visit. 
Then we went to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway!
We went for the museum but...

we took the track tour first...

and actually got to get out and walk around on the track and see the bricks! 

I have to be honest...this was probably my favorite part of the entire trip. Tied, at least.

After that., we went and saw the St. Louis Arch, something that had been on my "bucket list". We were actually in East St. Louis, Illinois, when this photo was taken. 

Actual St. Louis is kind of scary because this area was completely signs of people at all. It's like when you see disaster areas on TV, and all the local people know not to go there or something. 
We drove through the rest of Missouri and ended up in Kansas City on night #2.

We started out the day by getting a new tire for our Edge, we sprung a leak while driving through Missouri, 
Kansas City, Missouri

We went to the Kansas City Federal Reserve Money Museum, which was very cool.

Now in Kansas. I enjoyed Kansas more than I thought I would- I had heard it was just flat with nothing to look at but I found it enjoyable.
An artsy type shot taken at the rest area in Manhattan, Kansas.
We drove through a brush fire...

The sunset in Kansas was beautiful. 

We got to Colorado Springs at night. 

Day #4 started out great...
We walk into the parking lot of the motel in the morning, and look up and see Pikes Peak, which looms over the city, very impressive. Since it was dark- after mightnight, in fact- when we arrived the night before we couldn't see it.
Zoomed in.

We went to the American Numismatic Association Museum, which was a lot of fun.

Then we went to the Penrose Heritage Museum, which is really two museums in one. The Penrose family museum, featuring their excellent carriage collection, and the Pikes Peak hillclimb museum. 

We were on our way to another museum up in Denver when traffic on I-25 came to a stop...
and unfortunately the guy behind us didn't stop. We were involved in an accident, the first accident I've ever been in, and as it turns out our car was totaled. It doesn't look all that bad, but the chassis and roof took damage and everything behind the rear seat was crushed. My brother and I took a little bit of damage but we are both going to be fine, my brother is already fine but my back is still hurting a little more than it normally does, and of course it normally does 24/7/365 anyway. 

We decided to continue the trip, and after getting a rental car we visited two museums the next day, although that was a mistake- I was in a lot of pain and couldn't finish the first museum.

That was the National WWII Aviation Museum. 

Then we went up to Denver...

to go to Furniture Row, which is not a museum per se, it's really a store, but it has a museum aspect as it has the 2017 Cup Championship car, 2011 Southern 500 Winner, and several other cars on permanent display. I included it in the Museum count. This is where we were heading when we had the accident.  Furniture Row's NASCAR team was in operation from 2005-2017 and is the only team in my lifetime to win a race and not be based in North Carolina. 

Day 6 was one of the most spectacular days, as we drove through the Rocky Mountains. I took more than 3000 photos on this day, only the second time I've taken that many in a single day, the other day being when I went to the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Pictures do not do the majesty of the mountains justice.

Yes, snow, in May! 

Note the 18 wheeler for scale...
Colorado River
Now in Utah

Day 7 saw us in Utah, which is where we were going. I have always wanted to attend the GSL Model car show, and 2023 is the final year for it. (The operators want to retire). I mentioned it offhand to my brother on December 31st, 2021, and he made it happen. 

Some pictures from the GSL.
By pure luck, the Kyle Petty Charity Ride happened to be in Salt Lake City 7 minutes away from the GSL, so of course I had to go over and see that! 
Ken Schrader
Hershel Walker
Rick Allen
Richard Petty
Kyle Petty

If you are friends with me on Facebook, you have seen my photo with Richard Petty already. 

The next day was all GSL. The vendor room, model show, and later in the day, the auction. I took part in a live auction for the first time ever. It was a lot of fun. However the highlight of the day was visiting the International Model Car Builders Museum, a museum I've wanted to see since I learned it existed in 2000. Here are some pictures from the Museum.

I believe this is the first NASCAR model ever published in a magazine. built by Don Emmons in 1964. 

Project Chevelle was a project by the Town of Newburgh Model Car Club, which was on the cover of Scale Auto Enthusiast magazine in 1990, and ended up being covered in magazines around the world!

The GSL concluded with an awards breakfast on Sunday, and I didn't win anything, rightfully so- the best of the best came out for the GSL. The TNMCC had 13 members present, though I was the only one crazy enough to drive out. 

my mentor, Rick, took home multiple awards with his freshly finished 49 Ford Custom. 

After the GSL ended, we began the trip home, and that will be in Part 2, coming soon. 


  1. Most of the trip was a lot of fun and we got to see a lot of new things.

  2. What an amazing trip! Those Rockies pictures are spectacular!

    1. They really were...sorry for the stress we caused you

  3. Race cars, airplanes, scale models and beautiful scenery all of my favorites! Sorry to hear about the accident, that stinks.

  4. Billy if you ever come to my hometown we can take a tour of the R E Olds museum

  5. Fun pictures, there were a lot of interesting things to see on this trip.

  6. Great photo of you and The King! I also loved the one with you on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Sorry to hear about the accident though. Hope your body feels better soon.

    1. Thanks, I still can't believe I got to experience these things!

  7. Looking on the bright side, you now have another thing in common with Richard Petty (and a lot of other drivers); you've both been in an accident! I know, it's terrible, and I hope that that after effects won't plague you for too much longer, but I couldn't resist :)

    1. Haha, I actually said a couple days later that for someone who is as into auto racing as I am, you wouldn't think that it would have affected me so much mentally, but it did.

  8. Great pictures sir! Glad you have a willing driver to take you around the country! That sucks about the car, but glad you two are alright!

  9. What a cool trip. So many photos of cars!. But my favorite photo has to be you with Richard Petty. Did he ask about your Adirondack Nationals hat?