OOIDIA’s tour trailer stops in Waterloo, N.Y.

October 15, 2020

Chuck Robinson


The fall foliage tour continues for OOIDA’s tour trailer. Skipper Jon Osburn is enjoying the sights as he pulls into Waterloo, N.Y., for the weekend.

The Spirit of the American Trucker is scheduled Friday through Sunday, Oct. 16-18, to be at the Waterloo Petro Stopping Center at Exit 41 from I-90, the New York Thruway toll road.

Good news: the Iron Skillet dining room is open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. There is parking at the Waterloo Petro for 191 big trucks.

The foliage was picturesque on the drive to Waterloo, Osburn said.

“It was almost picture-puzzle pretty,” he said.

The New York State Thruway Authority was formed in 1950 to construct, maintain and operate a system of limited-access toll highways in the state. The 496-mile I-90 mainline connects New York City at Yonkers to the New York state cities of Albany, Syracuse and Buffalo.

Memorial Day birthplace, Finger Lakes region

Waterloo is proud of being the birthplace for Memorial Day. The city held the nation’s first remembrance on May 5, 1866, when a city druggist came up with the idea and a Civil War Union general enthusiastically got on board with it.

Within a couple of years, other communities were having a Memorial Day observance on May 30, so Waterloo joined them on that date, according to an account on the city’s website. A hundred years after the first Memorial Day observance in Waterloo, New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller signed a proclamation recognizing the city of Waterloo’s role in commemorating war dead. Also that year, 1966, the U.S. Congress unanimously passed a resolution noting Waterloo’s role in observing Memorial Day.

The city has a National Memorial Day Museum celebrating the holiday.

Waterloo is in the Finger Lakes region, which is named for 11 long, narrow roughly north-south aligned lakes that fill river valleys deepened by glaciers. Just east of Waterloo is one of the Finger Lakes, Cayuga Lake.

Also just east of Waterloo, I-94 crosses near the smaller Black Lake, which connects to Cayuga Lake but is not considered one of the Finger Lakes.

The word from Wellington, Conn.

At the previous stop for OOIDA’s tour trailer in Wellington, Conn., Osburn said a lot of drivers were stopping by to see what OOIDA was all about, and lots of them were taking free face masks with them.

“We were giving out PPP like crazy,” Osburn said.

There still are quite few drivers with some questions about the reformed hours of service regulations, he said.

It is a good thing to review. Here is a rundown of HOS changes plus some videos to watch to help the information lodge.

The other thing that is apparent on the East Coast like nowhere else is that additional truck parking is absolutely necessary.

They seem to have plenty of money for no-parking signs but none for actually adding parking spaces, Osburn said.

A federal bill to spend $755 million over five years on truck parking is gathering co-sponsors, writes Land Line Staff Writer Tyson Fisher in his latest column The Parking Zone.

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 at The Spirit. You also can get forms for uninsured drivers to get flu, shingles and pneumonia vaccine vouchers at The Spirit.

After Waterloo, OOIDA’s tour trailer is scheduled to stop in Carlisle, Pa.

Here is the schedule for The Spirit. LL