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Highway 36: The Way of American Genius

February 24, 2020

Road trips can often take you in odd directions and off the beaten path. And those are fun. But Highway 36 offers you a straight shot across the Show-Me State (more or less) with interesting stops all along the way. Here's just a sampling:

Patee House Museum - Kids will be wowed by the full-size train found inside this St. Joseph museum, which also boasts hundreds of exhibits and a whimsical carousel. Who wouldn't want to ride an eagle or hummingbird?

Shatto Milk Company - See modern-day geniuses at work as they create unique flavors of milk, including cotton candy. Tour the farm and the bottling facility, located near Osborn.

Missouri Quilt Museum – Browse antiques, toys and quilts, and add some of your own thread to the still-growing world's largest spool of thread. It's 22 feet tall!

Jamesport - The largest Old Order Amish settlement west of the Mississippi River is home to incredible craftsmen and bakers and their shops.

Grand River Historical Society Museum - See the Rohwedder bread slicer that helps the city of Chillicothe claim its status as "the home of sliced bread." While you're in town, be sure to stop by the Home of Sliced Bread Innovation Center and check out their escape rooms. One has a Highway 36 theme.

Pershing Boyhood Home State Historic Site - Gen. John J. Pershing lived in Laclede; exhibits focus on Pershing's home, school and military life.

Walt Disney Hometown Museum - After visiting this museum in Marceline, you'll appreciate the community's impact on the future animation pioneer.

Mark Twain Cave - Tour the cave that inspired many of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn's adventures in Mark Twain's hometown, Hannibal. You might catch a glimpse of the authenticated signature – on the cave wall – of a young Samuel Clemens who grew up to be one of America's most beloved authors. If you're adventurous, check out the lantern tour at nearby Cameron Cave.

Coming from the east? Just start here at the bottom and work your way backward! The Way of American Genius is equally fascinating from both directions! Hop on and start planning your getaway today.

Written by Barb Brueggeman

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