The Spirit heads to Terrell, Texas – Jamie Foxx’s hometown

February 27, 2020

Chuck Robinson


Terrell, Texas, is always a busy stop, says Jon Osburn, skipper of OOIDA’s tour trailer, the Spirit of the American Trucker.

The Spirit is scheduled to be parked at the Terrell TA Travel Center Friday through Monday, Feb. 28 through March 2. The Terrell TA is at the Wilson Road exit from Interstate 20, Exit 503.

Terrell is 30 miles east of Dallas. Terrell began as a railroad town when cotton was king, and was named for an area settler and landowner.

Jamie Foxx and Thrillvania

Actor Jamie Foxx was born in Terrell. He played basketball for Terrell High School and was the quarterback for the school football team. The school district’s Jamie Foxx Performing Arts Center opened in 2003. It has 1,534 seats and is the venue for most of the high school’s music and dramatic presentations.

Foxx won an Oscar for his performance depicting Ray Charles in the 2004 move “Ray.”

Just down the road less than a half mile from the Terrell TA at the same exit is the Thrillvania Haunted House Park. It is a haunted house theme park on 50 acres created in 1996. The website for Thrillvania says it is “updating for 2020 – stay tuned,” and there is no answer to telephone calls. Even so, here is a feature article about it from D Magazine. Here is an introductory video. It looks like campy fun when it is open.

Ready to discuss issues

Drivers who stopped by The Spirit in Hillsboro, Texas, caught up on issues such as OOIDA’s stance against a proposal in the U.S. Senate to fund highways with a trucks-only vehicle miles traveled tax. The plan is being floated by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association.

OOIDA President and CEO Todd Spencer recently sent letters opposing the trucks-only mileage tax to the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Committee on Finance and the Committee on Environment & Public Works. In the letter he mentioned that the trucking industry already is paying more than its fair share for the nation’s roads.

Jon handed out copies of the letter to drivers.

The LandLine.Media article about the Oregon about a cap and trade plan to reduce carbon emissions also had drivers’ tongues wagging. Keith Goble, Land Line’s state legislative editor, reported on Republican minority Legislature members staging a walkout to avoid a vote on the issue. They did the same a year ago.

Another big issue on drivers’ minds is the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement – successor treaty to the North American Free Trade Agreement. Some drivers in Hillsboro expressed optimism that it will make a difference when it goes into effect. Mexico and the U.S. have ratified the USMCA, but Canada has not so far.

OOIDA helped shape the USCMA, which includes the means for Mexican trucks to be investigated to determine if a Mexican carrier is causing material harm to the U.S. long-haul trucking industry.

Take a few minutes to check in

If you pull in somewhere and see The Spirit tour truck, stop by and say hello to Jon. He enjoys visiting about the Association’s activities and current issues. You 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.

Jon’s Texas tour this year started in El Paso. The tour included stops in Laredo, San Antonio, New Braunfels and Hillsboro. After Terrell, The Spirit has a stop scheduled in Shreveport, La. Here is the schedule.