Route 66

A 1941 Packard 120 Convertible starts the Great Race in Kirkwood, Mo. Saturday, June 20, 2015.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

Hundreds of people lined the streets of downtown Kirkwood Saturday to see 130 classic cars start an eight-day, 2,400 mile journey along Route 66.

The cars — and their drivers — are competing in the 33rd annual Great Race, a competition judged on arriving at set checkpoints at pre-ordained times. The Grand Champion will be awarded $50,000 after they cross the finish line in Santa Monica, Calif.

Courtesy Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center

Ok folks, it’s a good weekend for a road trip. We’ve got Superman, French Heritage and a celebration of Route 66.

(Courtesy Lemp Mansion)

The open road. Curving, meandering highways. Roadside diners and trips to remember yesteryear. These are the types of images most often associated with Route 66.

But in addition to tourists and explorers, some unsavory characters have lived and traveled along the roads that became Missouri's Route 66. Author Lisa Livingston-Martin tells their stories in her new book, Missouri's Wicked Route 66: Outlaws and Gangsters on the Mother Road.