Tuesday, August 26, 2014

#223: Meramec Caverns

Ah yes...the HOLY GRAIL of them all! At least to me, that is. This was the farthest away of all the cakes from me. Actually, I'm probably speaking for most Illinois cake-hunters. While all Missourians complain about going to Carlyle and Greenville, we Illinoisans have to drive all the way to the caverns, so there!

Some facts about the caverns:
  • The caverns are believed to have existed for over 400 million years.
  • In the 1950s and 60s, movies and TV shows were shot in the caves, most notably Lassie.
  • Legend has it that outlaw Jesse James and his gang hid here during the 1870s. No evidence is shown...yet
  • Kate Smith once sang inside the 'theater' part of the caves
  • In 1935, Meramec Caverns was opened by Lester Dill, who discovered the current 4.6 miles of caves that were found.
  • The most visited cave in the state of Missouri, with 150,000 visitors yearly

Here's the greetings sign:

It was well worth the nearly 80 mile drive from where I live. 

Here's a little look inside the caverns:
Neon sign, located at the entrance to the cave

This is a shot of a Lassie photo, near the place where the Lassie TV series was filmed

This was taken inside their 'theater area'

And, since I drove this far (again, the farthest for any cake), I actually hugged the darn thing! Then I took a moment to recognize what it stood for. This is a cake that represents Route 66 (one of two Route 66-themed cakes painted by Rich Brooks).
Left side of the cake

Back side of the cake

Right side of the cake

NOW: The cake was removed in January 2015. Its whereabouts are unknown at the moment.

Wikipedia link
Official website

1135 Route W, SULLIVAN, MO, 63079
Cake artist: Rich Brooks

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