Best of the Road: New York and Kentucky

Our intrepid videographer and road warrior, Allison Otto, captures small town wonders from the Best of the Road trip through New York state and Kentucky.

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Joplin, MO, gives a warm welcome to the Rogue Riders, the Best of the Road team assigned to discover America’s friendliest small towns. 960 1280

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Percy Katz (pictured here with museum director Brad Belk) is the official museum greeter at the Joplin Museum Complex in Joplin, MO. The 12-year-old Russian Blue, who is named after local composer Percy Weinrich, has survived cancer and a kidnapping that made front-page news to become the unofficial mascot of Joplin. 960 1280

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Percy Katz, Joplin’s most famous cat and resident greeter at the Joplin Museum Complex in Joplin, MO. 960 1280

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Route 66 Carousel Park, a vintage, family-owned park along the popular Route 66 byway that runs through Joplin, MO. 960 1280

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A view of Route 66 Carousel Park. 960 1280

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Best of the Road co-hosts Gary Hurt and Amanda Pflugrad enjoy the Route 66 Carousel Park in Joplin, MO. 960 1280

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The Old Courthouse, built in 1892, is now the Bardstown Visitor’s Center. The Courthouse stands in the center of Bardstown’s historic district. 960 1280

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Bardstown’s nickname is the Bourbon Capitol of the World with mint juleps made with bourbon being a popular local drink. 960 1280

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A mint julep made with Kentucky bourbon and topped with powdered sugar. 960 1280

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Bardstown’s Old County Jail, built in 1797, was the oldest operating jail in the state of Kentucky until 1987. 960 1280

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The old, one-room schoolhouse in historic Bardstown, Kentucky. 960 1280

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Grand Falls, Missouri’s largest continually flowing natural waterfall, is a popular swimming hole just south of Joplin. The depth of the water can climb to about 25 feet. 960 1280

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One small-town wonder: A little wrangler in College Station, TX. 960 1280

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Exterior of the Depot Café, a popular local diner in Frisco, TX. 960 1280

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The water tower is a well-known landmark in Frisco, TX. 960 1280

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Mary Mathis has been serving her famous snow cones in Frisco, TX, for more than 25 years. Her snow cones are a summertime tradition. 960 1280

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The snow cone lady’s shack in Frisco, TX, serves more than 50 varieties of snow cones. 960 1280

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A windmill in Frisco, TX, where temperatures reach more than 106 degrees. 960 1280

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A replica of the ring worn by graduates of Texas A&M. 960 1280

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Colonel, the horse, watches the sunset in College Statiom, TX. 960 1280

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The Best of the Road RV tackles the Watkins Glen International racetrack in Watkins Glen, New York. 960 1280

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Best of the Road co-hosts Gary Hurt and Amanda Pflugrad dance to a mariachi band in the Santa Fe Plaza, a National Historic Landmark. 960 1280

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An all-female mariachi band performs at the historic Santa Fe Plaza. 960 1280

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Santa Fe’s Railyard District is now home to a vibrant arts and food scene, which features a Southwestern-flavored farmer’s market on the weekends. 960 1280

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A railcar at the historic Railyard District in Santa Fe. The Santa Fe Southern Railway offers scenic High Desert trips in their vintage cars. 960 1280

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A local farmer sautés fresh snap peas for shoppers to sample. 960 1280

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The Santa Fe Farmer’s market is a great place to find a budget breakfast or lunch on Saturday. 960 1280

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Fresh sage burros for sale at the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market. 960 1280

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Bert and Best of the Road co-host Amanda Pflugrad, joke with the check won by team Two for the Road for their work as judges of the America’s Most Beautiful Towns category. 960 1280

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The Best of the Road teams and staff celebrate with Bert on a yacht in Seattle. 960 1280

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A child celebrates the Fourth of July in Gainesville, TX, which was awarded “Most Patriotic” town in America in the recent Best of the Road tour. 960 1280

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Truffles decorate a table at a community Fourth of July party in Gainesville, TX, which is a Medal of Honor host city. 960 1280

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Dogs celebrate the Fourth of July in Denton, TX. 960 1280

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The Best of the Road RV crew enjoyed almond-encrusted onion rings at Luna Red in San Luis Obispo, CA. 960 1280

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On a busy weekend in Gainesville, TX, the Fried Pie Company can sell as many as 800 pies. 960 1280

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Travel Channel videographer Allison Otto photographs a Fourth of July parade in Gainesville, TX. 960 1280

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Best of the Road co-host Gary Hurt stretches his legs on a California byway. 960 1280

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Detail from a street mural in San Luis Obispo, CA. 960 1280

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The famous BubbleGum Alley in San Luis Obispo, CA. 960 1280

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The origins of BubbleGum Alley are unknown. Some historians claim it was started after World War II by a graduating class of San Luis Obispo High School. 960 1280

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A couple enjoys an evening canoe trip in Seattle. 960 1280

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The sun sets in Seattle, the final destination for Best of the Road. 960 1280

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The Best of the Road crew celebrate the completion of the tour with an evening boat cruise in Seattle. 960 1280

Allison Otto  

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