Created By: Pulaski County Tourism Bureau & Visitors Center
Route 66 Mural located at Odyssey Scuba and Eclectic Originals. The mural depicts the beautiful roaring Roubidoux Creek, Bridge, and Historic Route 66.
The Why and How as told by Scuba Bob of Odyssey Scuba
We purposefully did it in a fashion that we hoped would allow as many people as possible to find something they can relate to without trying to be too specific about any single element. Fun debates have already popped up....is it a '56 or '57 Chevy? What bridge is that? Is or isn't that a Harley? Most people driving by and giving it a glance simply see a suggestion, and their imagination fills in the rest. Like most things in life you see what you choose to see...
The idea for a mural was something Cheryl Keeton suggested and had had in mind for a very long time; maybe even as far back as when the neighboring businesses were torn down! However, as with most things in life, it seemed that time and money couldn't agree! I'd spoken to several artists throughout the years, but things just didn't seem to align for one reason or another. Last year I spoke to Jake Kloeppel, the non-sports Activities Director at WHS, and he told me that he and his group would love to be a part of making our mural a reality. If we'd supply the materials, they would donate the labor!
The money also still wasn't really there but I decided that it probably never would be, so between Odyssey Scuba and personal funds I gathered the necessary materials. Jake and a group of graduates from Waynesville and Dixon (former students of his) settled on a time they could work, and I got busy begging and borrowing equipment. The use of the scaffold was donated by the city of Waynesville, and ladders were loaned by Larry Keeton and Luge Hardman. Various private citizens came along and donated drinks and snacks for the workers, Chris Landes (owner at Colton's) donated lunch one day, and a couple of other private citizens have graciously offered money to offset some of the costs.
I sat down and began doodling ideas for the mural as soon as Jake and I started talking, and I guess I can say that for the most part the design is mine. I wanted something that was generic enough to appeal to nearly anyone, yet be suggestive of the elements that come together here in Waynesville. You can totally "crowd" a mural by putting too much into it, and I'm one that prefers things being simplistic by nature, so I attempted to bring in elements that spoke to both local people as well as visitors without it being "too much". Obviously, you have to choose the elements depicted, and some things are more easily identified and associated with such as Route 66 and the natural rivers/wildlife of Missouri. Jake took my sketches and made some design suggestions/changes, and then added the colors that I had hoped for to make it vividly stand out.
I wanted to avoid being "commercial", but it's fair to say that since it's mine I wanted to have a personal/business touch included...so the dive flag is homage to the fact that Odyssey Scuba is the ONLY scuba shop in the entire world with a physical Route 66 address and it's located HERE! It's not done with words, but a simple Diver Down flag that identifies us. To a diver it stands out; to others, it's just another pretty color on the wall. I was also tired of having to say that we are "across from...." in describing our location; now, everyone will know the mural, and our neighbors can say they are across from US!
It's our hope that as you cross the iconic bridge and enter what we feel is a vibrant small town at its best, you will be awed and pleased at the visual impression the mural creates. We hope the community can feel a sense of pride, and that it might inspire others to work just a little harder to make our small town the best it can be!
Bob, Odyssey Scuba
Installed June 2018
Photos by: Waynesville School District and Cheryl Keeton/Eclectic Originals.
This point of interest is part of the tour: Waynesville Downtown Walking Tour