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Report 2041: Driving the Great Mississippi River Road

By BJinNM from New Mexico, Fall 2012

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Page 12 of 33: Day 12-Edwardsville, IL to Ste. Genevieve, MO

photo by BJ Firestone

World's Largest Ketchup Bottle

After a leisurely breakfast at Chery’s house, the three of us (Alan, BJ, and Chery) loaded up the car and set out for Ste. Genevieve, MO. A short distance outside of Edwardsville is the town of Collinsvile, IL, home of the world’s largest ketchup bottle. One of the big objectives of this road trip was to see and photograph this piece of true Americana. It is actually a water tower that is on the side of the highway with no signs, and no pull offs where we could stop and worship it. Alan just pulled into a side street and we all jumped out, left the car doors wide open, and ran across the street to see it and photograph it. What a fun thing to be a able to actually see, probably a once in a life time chance!

We actually then got onto the interstate highway for a short while, crossed the Mississippi River on it and exited in Missouri, once more picking up River Road. We drove along the River, not being able to see it at all until we got to Herculaneum, MO. We drove around Herculaneum until we found the little park that borders the River. It is quite lovely there but the River is really low on water as it is everywhere we have been.

Onward we drove, reaching Ste. Genevieve in time for lunch. We shared what had to be the largest platter of onion rings ever! YUM! After checking into the Inn where we are all staying and letting Alan have his afternoon nap, we walked around this very French town. Ste. Genevieve was founded in 1735 on the banks of the Mississippi River by French Canadians and was the first French settlement in Missouri. The architecture in the old section of town is very reminiscent of the French Arcadian architecture in Louisiana. Of course, we were walking around at five just as everything was closing (typical!).

Luckily we are spending all day tomorrow and tomorrow night here, so we will be able to go into many of the historic buildings and cute shops.

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