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Day 32 – Wednesday May 30th: Little Town, Big Ideas

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<– Day 31 – Tues. May 29th: Nous aurons toujours Paris | Day 33 – Thursday May 31st: Getting Our Kicks on Route 66 –>


Jim’s showing Ann the finer points of using the emboidering functions on this sewing machine we bought from him. He’s renaissance man of many talents!

Day 32: On Wednesday, we drove from Paris, Illinois, to Ellisville, Missouri.


We pulled out of the Ogle’s lovely Country Bed and Breakfast by following some picturesque back roads. This one was particularly pretty.


Our first stop of the day was the little town of Casey. To get there, we traveled down I-70. Normally, we’d have likely bypassed a town like Casey unless it offered something unusual. The residents of Casey understood this, so in December of 2011, to help draw in some traffic, the world’s largest Wind Chimes were installed near the town’s center.

As word about the chimes leaked, travelers began venturing off I-70 to investigate them. Realizing the potential of having big things, more items began to appear in Casey. According to one woman I met, the influx of visitors ramped up quickly, bringing in unexpected cash and visibility.

Now, the town has multiple “largest” items, along with some other goofy items. Participating businesses offer a checklist for visitors so they can be sure not to miss them. The town’s website touts its “Big Things in a Small Town“.


Signs direct visitors:


The original big thing: The wind chimes.


Hanging out in the world’s largest bird cage:

It may not be the easiest to use pencil, but it is the largest we are told:


Yes, you really can mail letters inside this huge mail box.
2018-05-30-casey-mailbox1 2018-05-30-casey-mailbox2This rocking chair had some nice detail work:
2018-05-30-casey-rocking-chair1 2018-05-30-casey-rocking-chair2

This world’s largest token is located at a bank near the town’s McDonalds.

2018-05-30-casey-largest-token2 2018-05-30-casey-largest-token

It appears this may be the next big thing. We thought it might be a large teeter-totter.2018-05-30-casey-teeter-totter

Our next goal was to see a giant arch. I believe we found the largest arch in Illinois.



Now that we’ve seen a big arch, we figured we could just drive by that other arch, the one in St. Louis. We’ll save a close up of the big arch for some other time, but here’s a freeway-photo.


See? Looks about the same as the Illinois arch.

From St. Louis, we went straight to Jim and Tracy’s house. One reason for our visit was that Jim’s been sharing a great deal of his deceased step-mother’s fabric with Ann and had made a deal for a machine, so we needed to check it out and pick it up. We managed to get some more fabric as well. I think Ann’s ready to sew and embroider for the next decade.

Of course, the day wouldn’t be complete without a jeep. Here’s Jim’s CJ-2A he took on the trip to Alaska. Packed behind the jeep is a Willys delivery van that need some work and a vintage Ford Bronco.


On Thursday, we start the day at Craig Brockhaus’ place to see the progress on his jeep barn. Then, we head for Claremore, Oklahoma.

<– Day 31 – Tues. May 29th: Nous aurons toujours Paris | Day 33 – Thursday May 31st: Getting Our Kicks on Route 66 –>


2 Comments on “Day 32 – Wednesday May 30th: Little Town, Big Ideas

  1. Mom

    So, i see there’s an ice cream shop right next to the giant mail box. Was that an excuse to visit the shop? You stated you bought a sewing machine from Jim. Is this a special machine he invented or modified? Must say their exhibits grounds were nicely landscaped.

  2. David Eilers Post author

    The ice cream shop didn’t open until later in the day. We haven’t had any ice cream this trip, though we did have some frozen custard in St. Louis. I will call and explain the sewing stuff.

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