OOIDA tour trailer rolls into Fargo, N.D.

October 26, 2021

Chuck Robinson

|

The next stop for the OOIDA tour trailer is in Fargo, N.D.

Marty Ellis plans to park the Spirit of the American Trucker on Oct 27-29 at the Fargo Petro. That’s at Exit 348 from I-94.

The Fargo Petro has parking for 195 tractor-trailers. There’s no full-service restaurant open there, according to the website, but there are fast-food options, including Tim Horton’s, Popeyes and Charley’s Philly Steak.

Fargo is where I-94 connects to I-29. The junction is just east of the Petro Stopping Center. Fargo is on the eastern border of North Dakota, next to Minnesota. The Spirit last visited Fargo just over a year ago.

Drivers concerned about rest areas

Marty Ellis is hearing from truckers about states that have decided to close down rest areas, despite a nationwide truck parking crisis.

He has noted some rest area closings along I-5 in Washington state. The closings were blamed on vandalism and accumulated trash, he said he had read. Reading further, he said it seemed like the state was cutting back on employees, which has to affect upkeep.

“Once trash gets stacked up, it doesn’t stop,” Ellis said on Land Line Now. “And if you ever notice, in most places the cleaner that it’s kept, the cleaner it will be. … Once it starts getting dirty, people stop caring.”

Ellis said he hopes employees cleaning and maintaining rest areas know they are appreciated.

“We aren’t getting enough people to work at the rest areas. It’s not a glamorous job, but, you know, whenever I see guys working at a rest area I always stop and thank them for what they are doing. And I hope that more people do that,” Ellis said.

The Washington DOT said in a news release that it would revisit the issue of closed rest areas early next year “and will make a decision based on crew and resource availability.”

Listen to what else Ellis said on Land Line Now

 

Overnight rest area parking bans?

Several states do not even allow overnight truck parking at tax-funded rest areas. Land Line Staff Writer Tyson Fisher this fall surveyed all states in the U.S. to find out which banned overnight parking. Read the details of his report here.

Cake!

A nice thing happened at the stop in Laurel, Mont. The staff at the TA Travel Center in Laurel treated Ellis and drivers who stopped by the Spirit of the American Trucker tour trailer to cake.

Staff at the Laurel, Mont., TA welcomed the OOIDA tour trailer with cake.
Staff at the Laurel, Mont., TA welcomed Marty Ellis and the OOIDA tour trailer with cake.

 

Stop by when you see The Spirit

If you see OOIDA’s tour trailer, stop by and say hello. Ellis looks forward to visiting about the Association’s activities and current issues. There are copies of Land Line Magazine to pick up there. You can join or renew your membership for $10 off the regular price at The Spirit. Face masks are available at The Spirit for anyone with a commercial driver’s license.

After the stop in Fargo, The Spirit is scheduled to visit Summit, S.D., and then Aurora, Ore.

Here is the schedule for The Spirit. LL

TravelCenters

Chuck Robinson formerly was senior copy editor for a weekly trade publication serving the fresh produce industry. He has served trade publications, horticultural journals and community newspapers for 25 years.