Carthage, Missouri: Get Your Kicks on Route 66
Carthage is on the famous Route 66 where you can still eat at old diners and travel the scenic “Mother Road.” You can even travel just 20 minutes more to Joplin, where you’ll discover the state’s largest continually flowing waterfall. If you enjoy a good old-fashioned road trip with off-beat attractions and the stuff of rural America and Rockwell... this is the place for you!
Day Trip Diary:
Precious Moments Chapel:Details: 4321 Chapel Road. 800.543.7975 Free Admission.
What You'll See: In Carthage, the Precious Moments Visitor’s Center created by Missouri artist Sam Butcher, features animated characters and a chapel telling Bible Stories through Precious Moments characters. My girls loved the animated characters and artwork.The Chapel features 52 murals depicting Biblical scenes and is one of Missouri´s most popular attractions. The facility is surrounded by gardens and fountains. The Visitor's Center also features a gift shop and Ice Cream Parlor where you can enjoy a treat after your tour.
Red Oak II:Details: Red Oak II directions can be found at: www.RedOakIIMissouri.com.
What You'll See: Red Oak II is a classic "road trip destination." Carthage Missouri artist and author Lowell Davis, loves rural America and memories of "yesteryear." As the landscape of America is rapidly changing with modern conveniences and technology, Lowell decided to create a beloved town along historic Route 66. Red Oak II consists of many small buildings depicting a simpler life in America.
66 Drive-In Theatre: Details:17231 Old 66 Boulevard 417.359.5959
What You'll See: This is the last remaining original six drive-in theatre named in honor of the famous road. They offer only G, PG, and PG-13 movies. Shows on weekends April-October
George Washington Carver National Monument:Details:5646 Carver Road, off Highway V in nearby Diamond MO. 417.325.4151
What You'll See: George Washington Carver is one of Missouri's most famous scientists. The inventor of peanut butter, and many other well-known discoveries, the Carver birthplace and childhood home tell the story of George Washington Carver. Tour the home and visitor's center, and family cemetery.
Civil War Museum:Details:205 S. Grant. 417.237.7060
What You'll See: The Civil War museum is a small locally operated museum with exhibits about the Battle of Carthage and the Civil War in Missouri. One of the most notable stories is that of the Petticoat Flag. The Hood family of Carthage were among the few Union supporters in the area. The Hood daughters secretly made a U.S. flag at a time when secession fever was burning and their neighbors were Southern sympathizers. The girls hid the flag by having their sister, Lucy, wear it as a petticoat. When Sigel's troops arrived in Carthage on July 4, 1851, she greeted the soldiers by climbing up to a fence on the courthouse lawn and removing her "patriotic petticoat" where she waved it proudly overhead to the cheers of soldiers. The museum features artwork depicting this historic event.
Carthage Public Library:Details:612 S. Garrison. 417.237.7040
What You'll See: One of the last remaining Carnegie libraries being used as a library, this classical-looking structure was built in 1904 from Carthage limestone. TheLibrary Gardens feature an "Alice in Wonderland" statue created by Bill Snow.
Family Friendly Dining in Carthage:
Iggy’s Diner (2400 S. Grand Ave. 417.237.0212) is a famous Route 66 joint serving juicy burgers, delicious shakes and curly-q fries!
More MoKan Day Trips & Vacations!
- 20-30 Min. East: Independence: Log Cabins & Trails West
- 45 Min. Northeast: Sibley: Lewis & Clark Country
- 45-60 Min. North: Weston: Autumn Splendor
- 1 Hour North: St. Joseph: Wild West in our Backyard
- 1 Hour Northeast: Lexington: Civil War in Missouri
- 1-2 Hours North: Jamesport: Amish Country
- 2 1/2 - 3 Hours Southeast: Springfield: Ozark Country
- 4-5 Hours South: Branson: Vacation Capital of the Midwest
- 4-5 Hours East: St. Louis: Gateway to the West Kansas
- 20-30 Min. West: Bonner Springs: Be a Kid for a Day
- 30-45 Min. South: Louisburg: Apples, Autumn, and Astronomy
- 30-45 Min. West: Lawrence: Eclectic College Town & Family Fun
- 45-60 Min. Northwest: Atchison: History & Mystery
- 60-90 Min. West: Topeka: More than a Capital City
- 60-90 Min. South: Fort Scott: National Historic Site
- 3 1/2-4 Hours Southwest: Hutchinson: Soar to Outer Space