Beaumont, Texas, is the next stop for OOIDA’s tour trailer

February 22, 2021

Chuck Robinson


This winter’s Texas tour for OOIDA’s tour trailer has been unlike any in memory, admits Jon Osburn, skipper of the Spirit of the American Trucker. Thanks, Mother Nature.

Osburn and the Spirit spent last week in San Antonio, where he and the rest of the drivers there had to put up with no fuel, no water, no showers, no toilets and no restaurants. This morning, however, the sun was shining and there was water, showers, food and diesel. All in all, quite an improvement.

This week, The Spirit stops in Beaumont, Texas, which also has been besieged by frigid winter weather uncharacteristic for the region. On Thursday afternoon last week, an 18-wheeler rolled over and shut down I-10 west of Beaumont. The reason for the rollover was not reported, but weather is suspected to have been a factor.

The Spirit is scheduled to be at the Beaumont Petro on Tuesday through Thursday, Feb. 23-25.
The truck stop is at the Walden Road exit from I-10, Exit 484.

The Beaumont Petro has parking for 275 tractor-trailers.

On Friday, there was no water at Petro Beaumont. This morning, however, water has been restored. The Black Bear Diner restaurant dining room is reported to be open.

If you’re headed to Louisiana, TA & Petro reports no water at TA Tallulah (where diesel pumps also are down), TA Greenwood, TA Lafayette and Petro Shreveport. Check for TA & Petro facility weather updates here.

Home of Spindletop

Beaumont is 80-90 miles northeast of Houston. On Sunday, the city of Beaumont lifted its boil-water notice. The Exxon Mobile Corp. oil refinery at Beaumont is reported to have restarted production.

Oil has been a defining characteristic of Beaumont since 1901, when drillers tapped into the Spindletop gusher. The amount of oil coming out of it was more than had been ever seen before. Many major oil companies were born soon thereafter, including Texaco, Gulf Oil, and Exxon. Spindletop and all that followed it knocked John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil from its monopolistic hold on the early oil industry.

The Spindletop Gladys City Boomtown museum on the Lamar University campus is just 10 minutes from the Beaumont Petro. Here is a Spindletop history provided by the museum.

Stop by when you see The Spirit

If you see OOIDA’s tour trailer, stop by and say hello to Osburn. He enjoys visiting about the Association’s activities and current issues. He usually has copies of Land Line Magazine to hand out. You can join or renew your OOIDA membership for $10 off the regular price there. Free face masks are available for anyone with a commercial driver’s license at The Spirit. You also can get forms for drivers without medical insurance to get flu, shingles and pneumonia vaccine vouchers at The Spirit.

After Beaumont, The Spirit is scheduled for Texas stops in Hillsboro, Carl’s Corner and Terrell.

Here is the schedule for The Spirit. LL