Help us welcome Ralph and Darlene home and celebrate their journey!
Welcome Home Reception | Thursday, Aug 25 | 7:30am | Fercho Y
They’re back! Chicago to Los Angeles on Route 66
Ralph and Darlene are taking another road trip to help raise funds for the Y’s Partner of Youth Annual Campaign! This time, they’ve traded in their bike for a BMW Roadster, and will be hitting historic Route 66 from Chicago to Los Angeles. Round trip, they will travel more than 4,000 miles!
Ralph and Darlene have been traveling together for more than 50 years and were ready to close a chapter after their “Last Ride” in 2015. However, they couldn’t give it up and decided to plan another fundraising trip this summer!
“This is my way of giving back to the community,” Ralph said about deciding to plan another trip, adding that he’s looking forward to cruising on one of America’s best-known routes in a new ride.
More than anything, Ralph and Darlene believe in supporting kids in our community. Since 2012, they’ve raised more than $41,000 for Partner of Youth, which has provided scholarships for local kids to learn and grow through Y programs like child care, summer camp, swimming lessons and more!
NEW for 2016 – All donations raised by Ralph and Darlene this year will be dedicated to Partner of Youth scholarships for homeless youth in our community.
Follow their journey!
July 21 – Ralph and Darlene left Fargo! They’ll travel first to Chicago, where they’ll get on Route 66 headed west to Los Angeles! Their first day on the road, they enjoyed they comfort of their new ride in this high heat and humidity, and made it all the way to Moline, IL (593 miles)!
July 22 – Ralph and Darlene made a stop today in Pontiac, IL for the IL District Gold Wing Rally, and even though they’ve given up riding their trike, they had a wonderful time catching up with many friends! Pontiac was a great jumping off point for Route 66, with tons of information, artifacts and the true spirit of Route 66!
July 23 – Today Ralph and Darlene did some Route 66 sight seeing via a city trolley and participated in more Rally activities. Tomorrow, they’ll be off to Chicago to find the official start of Route 66 and start their journey to Los Angeles!
July 24 – Ralph and Darlene are on Route 66! They found the official “begin” sign for the route in Chicago, and drove down Route 66 to St. Louis where they saw the Gateway Arch. Their total mileage for the day was 616 miles!
July 25 – Ralph and Darlene continued on Route 66, traveling 560 miles! They took in the sights along the way, including the world’s largest rocking chair, and Devil’s Elbow Bridge, considered to be one of the most scenic spots on the route. They also stopped at a drive-in diner and ended their day in Oklahoma City!
July 26 – Today Ralph and Darlene toured the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum, which take a traveler decade by decade on the history of Route 66. They also stopped at the route’s center point between Chicago and LA, and finished the day in Amarillo, TX, traveling a total of 362 miles!
July 27 – Ralph and Darlene made their way down the route, stopping at a historic recreation diner that captured the spirit of Route 66 history. They also toured the El Rancho Hotel, which hosted many film shoots! They continued on to the Wigwam Motel, and were able to stay in one of the famous teepees! They traveled a total of 434 miles today!
July 28 – Ralph and Darlene made a stop at the Grand Canyon! In all their travels, they hadn’t had the chance to see the natural wonder and were excited to cross that destination off their bucket list! On the way, they saw the United State’s largest meteor crater, formed 50,000 years ago! They also visited Seligman, AZ, which claims the be the birthplace of the Route 66 revival, thanks to the efforts to a man named Angel Delgadillo, who wanted to put his town back on the map through the revitalization of the route. Thanks to Angel and leaders in other communities along the route, visitors from all over the world still travel down Route 66 to see the sights. They ended the day in Kingman, AZ, arriving safely through heavy rain and hail.
July 29 – Ralph and Darlene reached the end of Route 66 today at the pier in Santa Monica, California! Along the way, they traveled through the tight hairpin curves of the Sitgreaves Pass and stopped in Oatman, AZ, where they met the town’s most famous inhabitants – the burros that roam freely on the town’s streets! Ralph, they Y’s “social butterfly” made fast friends with the four-legged residents! Afterwards, they continued on to the Summit Inn, known for one of its most famous customers – Elvis Presley. They spoke with some of the locals and found the best route to the official “end” of Route 66 on the Santa Monica pier and made it there around 3:30 in the afternoon. They spent the rest of the day exploring the historic pier and celebrating with a seafood dinner!
July 30 – Ralph and Darlene left the heat of Pasadena today to head to Phoenix/Scottsdale, AZ to visit friends and family. Besides the scorching temps, everything has gone well on their trip, and their new ride is humming along!
July 31 – Ralph and Darlene continued their visit in Arizona and got some much-appreciated rain!
August 1-3 – After spending a few days catching up with friends and family in Arizona, Ralph and Darlene got back on the road. They traveled 518 miles to Las Vegas, NV!
August 4 – Ralph and Darlene traveled from Las Vegas, NM to North Platte, NE today , traveling 599 and stopping to spend some time in Denver.
August 5 – Ralph and Darlene made it home safe and sound!