KINGMAN – Jim Hinckley continues to bang the drum for Route 66, working toward goals outlined in the Promote Kingman initiative and complementing efforts by the city’s tourism director.
The primary issue is the need to develop more projects that foster a “sense of community and community purpose,” said Hinckley, Kingman’s Route 66 ambassador and author of more than a dozen books about the Mother Road.
The upcoming Arizona Town Hall meeting is an excellent step in that direction, he said.
Other projects that need to be promoted include the Route 66 sign project from Scott McCoy, with assistance from Laron Engineering, Legacy Signs, the city of Kingman, Promote Kingman and Route 66 Association of Kingman. It should be up in time for the Route 66 Fun Run on May 6.
Hinckley worked on acquiring models of iconic Route 66 businesses such as Mr. D’z Diner in Kingman built by internationally acclaimed Dutch artist Willem Bor, founding member of the Dutch Route 66 Association. The models have soared in value since Bor’s death in January.
The model of Mr. D’z was donated to owner Scott Duncan, and will be displayed at Dunton Motors, which serves as headquarters for Route 66 Association of Kingman.
Twin Arrows Trading Post model is displayed at Antares Point Route 66 Museum east of Kingman. John McEnulty, owner of the museum, and Grand Canyon Caverns created a special display for the model.
The Dutch Route 66 Association shipped the models free of charge with specialized packaging.
Hinckley has scheduled walking tours of Kingman’s historic downtown district on May 5 and May 7, using photos from the Mohave Museum of History. It’s perfect for new residents or people thinking of moving to Kingman to get a feel for the town, he said.
He recently hosted a reception for the president of the Japanese Route 66 Association, in conjunction with Route 66 Association of Kingman and Promote Kingman.
“It went rather well and he greatly enjoyed Chillin’ on Beale,” Hinckley said. “I should note that he is also a travel writer for the largest Japanese language newspaper in New York City.”
On May 7, Hinckley will be making a presentation at Ramada Kingman for a travel group from New Zealand. The company is hosting a vintage tour in October.
He’s working on another reception for US Bikers, a European tour group, on May 16.
Promote Kingman produced a video in January that could be used by the Chamber of Commerce, but its release was delayed due to lack of funding. The 10-minute trailer garnered 58,000 views in 60 days, and the completed video will be shown internationally.
“We have started on a second video, but again, a lack of funds has hindered development,” Hinckley said. If the Chamber of Commerce could pony up just $500, it would be a tremendous help, he said.