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Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019 12:05 am


No one was happier than us when Mayor Jim “Jelly” Langfelder pulled the trigger on buying the iconic Sonrise Donut sign for the low, low price of $22,000 during a recent auction that made us, frankly, wonder who else was bidding on a broken neon sign that will cost a mint to move and perhaps even more to fix up and perhaps even more than that to figure out where to put it, although there have been some off-color suggestions on where it might be best deposited. Fear not. The mayor says the city is coming up with a plan to market Route 66 and preserving the sign is part of that plan, whatever it might be. Our humble suggestion is that the plan involve donuts. Great big, fluffy donuts -- cake, cruller, jelly-filled, we don’t care, so long as they are donuts stuffed with gluten and sugar. Because, you see, Route 66 markets itself. Folks like Paul McCartney don’t need self-promoting cities to figure out how to drive the back route from Chicago to Santa Monica, they plot it out themselves for nostalgia, for the adventure, for the chance to see America as it once was (and good luck with that). And so, put the city’s new sign atop an honest-to-goodness donut shop, and double down with some TIF money if that’s what it takes to lure one to the route proper. Make the sign and other relics functional, part of day-to-day life, because nothing screams desperate like a Route 66 museum filled with signs and knick-knacks from businesses that went under long ago because the world passed them by.


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