Get Your Kicks (and Snacks) on Route 66
The legendary road is an American icon. Gas stations and c-stores helped make it that way.
Take the highway that’s the best
Get your kicks on Route 66
— Bobby Troup
If you’re looking for an adventure, why not take a road trip somewhere along the 2,238 mile length of Route 66? The historic, and frankly, iconic, highway runs from Chicago to Santa Monica and is filled with interesting landmarks, breathtaking views, and charming towns. And what’s a road trip without some pit stops along the way? Luckily, the gas stations and convenience stores along Route 66 offer more than just fuel and snacks. Here are some interesting spots on your journey among the road’s picturesque towns and sometimes breathtaking landscapes:
Ted Drewes Frozen Custard, St. Louis, Missouri
This family-owned business has been serving up their signature frozen custard since 1929, which appeals to locals and tourists alike. Whether you’re in the mood for a classic vanilla cone or their famous “concrete,” a thick, creamy shake mixed with toppings of your choice, Ted Drewes is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Pops 66, Arcadia, Oklahoma
Pops 66 appeal starts with its over 700 varieties of soda. Oh, that, and the giant 66-foot-tall soda bottle out front, truly a beacon for thirsty travelers. Inside, you’ll find shelves upon shelves of soda bottles from all over the world. An adjoining restaurant serves classic diner fare and unique twists like a burger topped with peanut butter and bacon.
Hackberry General Store, Hackberry, Arizona
The gas station and general store have been around since the 1930s and make every effort to keep that historic feeling front and center. An icon on an iconic road, Hackberry’s walls are adorned with vintage signs, license plates, and other memorabilia. You’ll find all sorts of souvenirs and gifts, including Route 66 apparel, hot sauce, cowboy hats, and a ton of rusty cars out front, if you’re into it.
Santa Monica Circle K, Santa Monica, California
It’s the end of the road! Or the beginning, if you’re headed east! Let’s just say the westernmost point of Route 66 is the Santa Monica Pier, where you’ll find an amusement park, restaurants, and plenty of ocean views. Even if you live thousands of miles away, you’re likely familiar with it as it’s been used in plenty of movies and TV shows—it’s hard to beat the view of a Ferris wheel against the Pacific Ocean. And if you want to grab a cool drink in the summer sun, or satiate your hunger after a beach run or a little surfing, the Santa Monica Circle K is just a few miles from the pier.
At SSCS, we think it’s pretty cool that we get to support the retail petroleum industry that’s partly responsible for the mystique surrounding a colorful part of U.S. history and character. Even better, we get to assist our c-store customers as they continue to move forward, helping usher the industry in to its next iconic era.