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Day 13 … “The Ghost Tour of Naperville”, Route 66 through Illinois and Lazy Dog

Sunday, June 13th, 2021

The Ghost Tour of Naperville”…. let’s start there. WOW. First off, Kevin Frantz, author, historian, paranormal investigator and author, was just amazing.  The tour starts in downtown Naperville, which was challenging at times as it was at 8 pm on a Saturday night and the town was alive and well with party goers. This being the first weekend that they have reached phase 5, everyone was out to celebrate.  That being said, Kevin did a great job being loud and present so we didn’t have to strain to hear him over the noise. The tour costs $20 cash at the site, you can reserve online if you like but not required. He took the group through each ghost story, and being the town’s Historian, he was being historically accurate.  Stories of lovers, lost loves, dug up bodies, and souls of the unrest kind…he had it all including EVP evidence and photos to back up the stories. He was theatrical, and he was passionate. I have been on some where they have this energy, and then the kind where they can’t wait to be done with their shift. It matters when it comes to ghost tours because you want to feel you are a part of that moment, that history…and the right host makes you feel right at home in that space.

The Park where many a ghost have been seen

The tour ran for a little under 2 hours, slated for 100 minutes. Everyone had lots of questions and he had lots of the answers. I had my own private chat with him after the tour group left, and appreciated the time he took to talk to me about all of my Paranormal adventures and encounters- HIGHLY recommend him and the tour if you are in the area.  Hit the Taco Bell pretty hard on the way home, and then I’m pretty sure I fell asleep with my nachos. They didn’t complain.

After a late night at the Ghost Tour, I slept in and it felt AMAZING.  I took my time, I got stuff done, I figured out how to resize my pics faster, and I was just riding cloud 9 on the “Get er’ done” list.  So after enjoying the warm sunshine and cool breeze, I headed out to find lunch and the infamous Route 66.

I drove to the stretch of Route 66 in Wilmington because I had been through here last year. I had gotten to the “Launching Pad” late last year, and due to Covid, it was shut down. I heard it had reopened and with Walter in tow, I was pretty giddy ordering my cheeseburger. The family who owns it could not have been nicer…I mean seriously, these people were super kind, efficient, and the place just gave off the “Welcome” vibe the minute you stepped in. I loved the booths with the Route 66 tabletops, and the 50’s music that was playing throughout the Restaurant.  The food came made to order, fresh, and absolutely one of the best cheeseburgers I have ever had.  The “Rocket Burger” can be made to whatever you want, and the prices were affordable and reasonable.  It was like you stepped back in time at this adorable diner, complete with its gift shop in the corner full of Launching Pad and Route 66 souvenirs. I picked up a sticker, as I am going to cover my suitcase in stickers from all of these travels.  They saw Walter and HAD to get a pic with the family- so they were pumped to do it, and that’s always fun when they WANT to do it and they don’t look at me like I have lost my mind. (Yes, someone has declined a pic with my loveable Muppet…. the nerve LOL).  A great lunch, a great place, LOVED them and I will be back!!

The Launching Pad Dining Room
Walter in front of the large Route 66 Mural inside the Diner
Delicious cheeseburger and onion rings – Hidden Mickey intentional of course!
Walter checking out the cool tabletops at The Launching Pad
Inside the ordering area of The Launching Pad
Dole Whip, Apple Pie, and Chocolate Milkshake… no sugar rush AT ALL LOL
Another sticker for my luggage- LOVE the Launching Pad!!!
Walter looking at the Gemini Giants
The Owners and Crew stop to take a pic with Walter- how kind!!!
Walter takes in the size of the Gemini Giant outside the Launching Pad
Before you leave the Launching Pad, grab a selfie in front of the Route 66 symbol on the garage in the back of the diner.

Next we headed up a ways, hit up a car wash by a Cheerleading team so we gave them a huge tip with it as the kindness for the day.  Then we took Walter to the Polka-Dot Drive In, and he enjoyed all the photo opps there and everywhere else on Route 66.  It was a lot of fun!! We finished up the adventure by checking out the “Joliet Route 66 Welcome Center” and grabbed some more pics.

Having done the “Polka Dot Drive In” last summer, it was a must see again with Walter.
Walter in front of the Polka Dot Drive In
Walter croons with Elvis
Not sure what Walter is doing here… perv.
A great photo opp for any Superman fan- phone booth WITH phone included. You know, a phone that you had to put coins in to use? LOL
Walter explaining to Superman that kryptonite is only in his head and if he just manifests that it doesn’t hurt, then he will be just fine LMAO
We passed the Raceway on Route 66 on the way to Joliet
I am in love with Roadside Attractions, but more so on Route 66
Look for these Route 66 markers all along the journey through Illinois
Photo opp in front of the Route 66/Joliet Museum
The Blues Brothers were filmed in Illinois
Walter having enough of my sh** takes off in his own car, only to return because he realizes he has no money and Muppets can’t hook on the road.
That’s one small step for Muppet kind…
Walter and I headed out on a trolley…. secured to the ground.
One of my favorite pics of Walter, the Law finally caught up to him.
We got Orange bottled Route 66 soda and a sticker for my luggage!

Finished off the day with dinner with dear friend Cheryl, a long time reader from my OG group, and it was SO nice to get to know her better.  I got my favorite Pot Roast and she had a Peanut Butter and Jelly Cheeseburger with Sweet Potato Tater Tots.  Mine was amazing, and she LOVED hers!  I had so much fun chatting with her, we will definitely be hanging out again. 

My dear friend, Cheryl, joins me for dinner at one of my favorite places in Aurora, “Lazy Dog”
The Pot Roast is my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE!!!!

Today’s Moments of Kindness: I saw a High School Cheerleading team washing cars on Route 66, so I paid them and tipped them well for it towards their program. Cheryl showed her kindness to me at dinner, along with calling the Manager over and telling them what a great job our waitress “Demi” did.

A great day, I am exhausted, I will catch y’all on the flip side tomorrow. Ryan Seacrest out.

Thank you for your kindness!!

I LOVE sharing the joy of Adventure, and Travel! Every dollar you support me with goes right back into my mission for equipment, gas, and essentials. But most importantly, when you support me financially it tells me you BELIEVE in me and MY VALUE, and that means more to me than ANYTHING! So THANK YOU for YOU!!

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