Thursday, June 16, 2016

Day 6: June 16-Oklahoma City, OK to Wichita, KS (176.8 miles)

Somehow, despite the sweltering heat of yesterday, this morning was beautiful and fairly cool.  We also finally had a nice route.  Our group added two people from Texas, Ted and Lori (Silver late model GTO with some performance upgrades), who were staying at our hotel.  We meandered along Oklahoma's country roads, some of which were lined with trees and snaked along a river.  It was good for the guys who had never been on the Tour to experience a good route.   It even took us through Orlando, Oklahoma.
All this way and we end up in Orlando.

The town of Blackwell, OK went all out.  The fire department was giving out cookies and waters and many people were sitting along the street watching and waving as the cars rolled down the main street.  We had lunch at "Bob's Grill" in town. The cook was an old woman and to get to the bathroom, you followed a yellow line painted on the floor through the kitchen.   It was still breakfast, so we scarfed down some good eggs and hash browns.  Tara had a sour cream raisin pie, which at first sounds disgusting, but it was phenomenal.  It tasted like a spice cake with a custardy consistency.  We talked to the owner who was not Bob.  Apparently, Bob is 102 yrs old and the new owner bought the place from him. 
Blackwell was almost like time travel with their old buildings and our old cars
1963 Split Window at the lunch stop.

By the end of lunch, the heat was already oppressive.  On the way out of town, we had to take a slight detour because a battery truck/trailer wrecked and spilled batteries and acid all over the road.  The police closed the road.  I can't imagine thousands of show cars driving down an acid covered road.
Hardly a replacement for a Trans Am, but Tour On!!!

we picked up the route a few miles down and kept on cruising. Hot Rod offered two alternative routes for the last bit of today's run.  Half our group elected one way which included mostly toll road highway and the other half (led by Tara and I) kept to the country roads. 

Our venue was the Kansas Pavilions, it's kind of an auditorium with huge parking lot.  It was mostly asphalt parking, but we still managed to find a great spot in grass with a shade tree and a little pond behind us.  It was at least 15 degrees cooler in the shade.  Too bad, I had to walk a pretty good distance in the sun and heat to get clocked in, pick up today's shirt and magnet.  I didn't take many pictures today, it was just too hot.  We spent the better part of the afternoon sitting in the shade talking cars.  One guy started asking Tara about the Acadian and then asked if she had been on TV. It turns out, he had seen the "100 Years of Chevrolet" documentary and recognized Tara from it.  Pretty impressive since that was from 2011. 
Beautiful '59 Impala

Chopped Ranchero

By 4:00, I had all the heat I could take and we went to our hotel aptly named: "Hotel at Old Town."  It's in a historic downtown part of Wichita.  The hotel is an old "Keen Kutter" tool warehouse and is beautiful.  It's walking distance to many gastropubs and great restaurants.  They also were having a Hot Rod Power Tour street party with the cars and we got a great spot in the thick of it all.
Every floor of the hotel has a museum case of antique tools or
other Wichita antiquities.

We had dinner at Public at the Brickyard and it was pretty cool.  It was in a basement and had a little speakeasy feel to it.  The service took a while, but there were 12 of us at the table. 

Buffalo Cauliflower

We had hoped that the weather would cool off enough to be bearable for the street party.  It didn't really.  Nevertheless, the street party was pretty packed with spectators and cars.  I couldn't help but laugh that we were hundreds of miles from home and at a car show on the brick streets of Old Town. There was an awesome Viper ACR, a black Ford GT, several 1969 Camaros (including a pea green on pea green 1969 RS that Tara loved).  The weather cooled off some, but it was still hot.

We met a couple who asked about the Acadian and were Mopar people, even though they were driving a 1965 Chevelle on the Tour. They showed us a picture of their 1970 340  'Cuda, so I showed them pictures of our 'Cudas.  They then tried to top that by showing a picture of their 1970 Roadrunner and  I matched it by showing them my 1969 GTX.  They out-Mopared us with a 1969 Satellite Convertible.  They also had a Rambler convertible, whatever the larger one of those is. After a few hours at the street party, we called it a night.

I can't believe that tomorrow is our last day of Power Tour.  The week blew by.  We head from Wichita to Kansas City, Missouri. 

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