Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Business and the Economy

Reinventing Route 66: Springfield Crowdfunding Campaign Nears

Credit: Crowdit

Planning continues for the Route 66-themed Roadside Park on College Street in Springfield. As KSMU’s Scott Harvey reports, officials on Saturday offered details of the attraction during the Birthplace of Route 66 Festival, and made modest gains ahead of the launch of a major fundraising campaign.

Citizens near and far will have the opportunity to fund a replicate of a sign for Red’s Hamburg, a historic Springfield diner and popular destination along what was known as The Mother Road. Through the crowdfunding site Crowdit, a Springfield-based company that launched earlier this year, donations will be accepted. The goal is $15,000. According to Paul Freeman, Crowdit’s CFO and co-founder, there’s a lot of reason for Springfield to be optimistic about that goal, noting their company’s reach with so far more than 200 clients.

“We are in 37 states and three countries with projects. So with our reach, it’s a great fit for the Route 66, which is obviously a national road map, if you will, of the history. So with that ability I think it really provides a good medium for the City of Springfield to reach people outside the City of Springfield,” Freeman said.

Nearly $600 was raised during Saturday’s festival, where citizens inquired about the future park along the College Street Corridor between Grant Avenue and Kansas Expressway.

“We talked to a lot of people this weekend who had eaten at Red’s, knew Red, and think it brings back a lot of memories for people. And that’s the whole idea of the park is, to preserver a lot of those memories.”

Ralph Rognstad is Springfield’s director of Planning and Development. In addition to the Red’s replica sign, he says the estimated half a million dollar project will include a filling station replica with restrooms, vending machines and visitor information; a relocated motor court cottage and sign replica; a Route 66 sculpture, and more.

The Red’s Hamburg sign campaign begins Oct. 4, and runs for 66 days.