July 26th: Kewanee to Streator, IL
July 26th Statistics – Kewanee to Streator, IL:
- Today’s Biking Distance – 79.8 miles
- Today’s Average Speed – 17.8 mph
- Today’s Time In Saddle – 4.5 hours
- Today Ascent – 1,280 feet
- Total Trip Biking Days – 34
- Total Trip Biking Distance – 2,634.3 miles
- Total Trip Average Biking Distance/Day – 77.5 miles
- Total Trip Ascent – 76,874 feet
Dinner the prior evening at Cerno’s Bar & Grill in Kewanee was a celebration. After being seated at Cerno’s, a woman I didn’t know walked in and sat at our table – Doug immediately went into shock with a big smile on his face. It was Doug’s wife, Lisa, who flew from Maryland to Peoria and then drove to Kewanee just for the evening to celebrate Doug’s and Lisa’s 25th wedding anniversary that day. She left the next morning to return to Maryland, but will be rejoining us for sightseeing the last week of the tour.
Cerno’s decor was unique and beautiful. The bar was imported from Belgium for Pabst Blue Ribbon in 1898 and displayed at a World’s Fair. The Mahogany mirrored bar spans fifty feet, with hand carved figurines at each end. Cerno’s also had detailed carved lion heads throughout the building, wall buzzers topped with tiny eagles that were used to summon a waiter to the customers, an embossed tin ceiling, stained-glass and leaded windows, brass footed pedestal tables and a teller cage where men would cash their paychecks and then come in for a drink. I particularly enjoyed the fried dill pickles.
Roads on today’s ride from beginning to end were the best of the trip so far. They were smooth and almost completely rural with little or no traffic. While the scenery was not the most diverse we have seen, nevertheless, it was beautiful and pristine. While we had some light sprinkles and showers, they were welcomed due to the heat.
For the last 20 miles, Doug, Robert, Jim and I rode together at a good clip (18-22 mph) thanks to a tailwind and smooth roads. When we reached Streator, IL (by going 5.5 miles off route to get to our lodging), our first stop was the Dairy Queen located five blocks passed our hotel. Doug graciously treated all of us to ice cream.