Oklahoma City and Tulsa are first in line to celebrate the Mother Road’s approaching centennial year with the inaugural AAA Route 66 Road Fest this June. Tickets are on sale route66roadfest.com.
The Road Fest is a weeklong celebration of the highway’s history, and the event will kick off a five-year countdown to the 2026 centennial to be observed in cities across the country and draw visitors from around the world.
Oklahoma’s nine-day event will be held June 18-19 at the Bennett Event Center at OKC Fairgrounds, then open in Tulsa’s SageNet Center at Expo Square on June 25-26. There will be exhibits, classic cars, activities, food, and live music.
“Tulsa entrepreneur Cyrus Avery is known as the ‘Father of Route 66’ and the historic highway crosses more miles in Oklahoma than any other state,” said Jared Peterson, president of AAA Oklahoma. “So, what better place to start the centennial celebration than the Sooner State?”
Advance daily admission tickets can be purchased online at $20 for adults 18 and older, and $10 for 12- to 17-year-olds and $5 for children 5 to 11. Children under 5 are free. Visitors can explore Route 66 through the decades by touring interactive exhibits that include artifacts, history, photos, fashion, automobiles, and iconic brands that came of age on the Mother Road.
The center attraction of the Road Fest will be the Route 66 Journey. The 14,000-square-foot interactive exhibit will illustrate what Route 66 looked like, sounded like and felt like in the 1920s, ’30s, ’40s, ’50s, ’60s and beyond with historical artifacts, photos, fashion, automobiles, music, and iconic brands that came of age through the decades on Route 66.
The Route 66 Journey exhibit will begin with antique vehicles from the 1920s and take participants into the Future of Mobility which will include a self-driving shuttle and high-tech drones.
There also will be a classic car show, vendor booths, and family activities that include virtual reality experiences, a remote-control car track, a pinewood derby competition and a Route 66 mini golf course featuring famous landmarks from the historic highway. Like any great festival, there will be plenty of food as well as live music from local and regional bands throughout the event.
“The Route 66 Road Fest will be as memorable as the historic highway itself and it is destined to be a summer highlight for visitors across the state and the country,” Peterson said.
In addition to tickets, Classic Car enthusiasts can sign up for the Road Fest Cars and Coffee event on the website. There also are a variety of booth spaces available for vendors who want to join the fun. For more details, email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.