Once or twice a year my “Girls” and I like to jump in the car and head out on a ROAD TRIP! One such trip was to the “Las Vegas of the South,” Tunica, Mississippi!
We had planned to drive straight through and timed it out to be around 8 hours.  We were doing well until we pulled off for gas in Southern, Illinois and saw the two words that changed our time frame completely, YARD SALE!
We decided to follow the sign and stop for just a few minutes before continuing on our way.  45 minutes later and 4 bags of “Key Buys” we were back on the road with a new agenda.  We had so much fun being spontaneous, we decided that with every gas stop, if we saw a yard sale sign we would stop.  The new plan was to hit a yard in each state between Illinois and Mississippi.  We had a great time meeting new people, seeing new sites, traveling roads we wouldn’t have normally, and buying other peoples treasures.
Turning our road trips into adventures made the trip more exciting.  
One of my favorites was a mini road trip scavenger hunt on our way from Chicago to Omaha, Nebraska.  We plotted our route to take a little longer route so we could make the stops we wanted.  We listed everything out and decided that everything had to be free or no more than $10.
1st stop – Normal, Illinois – Illinois State University Student Union (We all graduated from ISU) – Get a button that had a Red Bird on it. Found one for $2.00. We each took turns wearing it.
2nd stop – Peoria, Illinois – Gondola Sandwich for Avanti’s Italian Restaurant (Yum) We got one and split it four ways.
3rd stop – Galesburg, Illinois Visitor Center – We all sat in the Big Blue Chair, together.
4th stop – Wasn’t really a stop. We drove through the Quad Cities. We had to name all of the cities (not as easy as you think). Davenport and Bettendorf (in Iowa) and Rock Island, Moline, and East Moline (in Illinois) All of us got stuck on Bettendorf.
5th stop – Des Moines, Iowa – JOHN AND MARY PAPPAJOHN SCULPTURE PARK.  We had to jump out the car and visit 3 of the 21 sculptures before hitting the road again.
6th and final stop – Joe Tess restaurant in Omaha, Nebraska for their famous fish sandwich
We were all  tired and along the way we almost decided to skip some stops but in the end we had a great time and lots of memories.  Plan your own road trip scavenger hunt or take the road less traveled for your next Road Trip.
I would love to read what some of your favorite road trip experiences were. Please feel free to comment or email me at
Until next time, keep your EYE to the sky!
Bonnie DeShong
Co-host of The Traveling Eye