A giant cross will signal The Spirit to its stop in Effingham, Ill.

September 28, 2018

Chuck Robinson


When the Guilty By Association Truck Show ends, OOIDA’s touring tractor-trailer heads northeast from Joplin, Mo., to Effingham, Ill.

Jon Osburn, skipper of the Spirit of the American Trucker, plans to be at the Effingham Petro on Oct. 1-3. The Petro is on Exit 159 from I-70/I-57 at West Fayette Avenue.

The rest of October, The Spirit has stops scheduled in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Maryland and Virginia.

Effingham, in southern Illinois, is about 100 miles from St. Louis and 140 miles from Indianapolis.

Driving through Effingham, you are sure to notice a 198-foot-tall white cross. It also is at Exit 159.

It was built in 2001. The cross is 133 feet wide. At its base, it is surrounded by monuments for each of the Ten Commandments that deliver inspirational audio homilies at the touch of a button.

There is a similar cross, although a smaller one by a couple of feet, in Groom, Texas, which inspired the creation of the Effingham monument.

At the Effingham Petro Stopping Center, you can find Charlie’s Knife Shop, and according to Google reviews, the knives are good quality and the seller is knowledgeable about his products.

The Petro truck stop has more than 200 truck parking spaces, a basketball hoop and walking trail and an Iron Skillet restaurant. Nearby is a Raintree restaurant, where the prime rib, steak and twice-baked potato get good reviews on TripAdvisor.com.

Whenever you see The Spirit tour truck, go say hello to Jon. He enjoys visiting about the Association’s activities and current issues. You also can join or renew your OOIDA membership for $10 off the regular price there. Also, you can get vouchers for flu, shingles and pneumonia vaccines from Jon at The Spirit.