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A few months ago someone on the LD Riders mailing list suggested that the glasses at the Buddy Holly Center in Lubbock, TX are about 1,000 miles from the glasses at the Buddy Holly Memorial in Clear Lake, IA. So, on Friday, July 5, at 3:15am I took a picture of the glasses in Lubbock with my bike. At 8:30pm that same day I took a picture of the glasses near Clear Lake, IA with my bike. A SaddleSore 1000 with a purpose. :)

If you enjoy Buddy Holly memorabilia both of these locations have much to offer.

Ride safe my friends.
 

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Ride Report

Buddy Holly Tribute 1000

July 5, 2019

On Feb 3, 2019 Tom McGoldrick posted this observation on the LD Riders mailing list:

“Today is the day the music died. In case you are curious. The glasses monument in Clear Lake IA is roughly 1000 miles from Lubbock TX where Buddy Holly was born. Clearly a ride waiting to be done.”

I work in Lubbock, TX and live in nearby Levelland, TX. My work frequently takes me near the Buddy Holly Center and its glasses sculpture. Over the weeks and months since Tom’s suggestion it has weighed on me that I have to do this ride.

I did some research into Buddy Holly’s life and found several landmarks around the Lubbock area that could serve to tell the story of this life. I intend to visit some of them while on-the-clock to make this ride interesting. (On a personal note I have a distant connection to Buddy Holly. My wife’s aunt, Echo Griffith, nee McGuire, was Buddy Holly’s high school sweetheart.)

Starting the clock at the Stripes convenience store at 34th street and I-27 at 2:58am I go first to Tabernacle Baptist Church on 34th street where Buddy was baptized. Next it is on to the Buddy Holly Center at the corner of Crickets Ave. and 19th street where the glasses sculpture is located. I consider this to be the foundation of his life from his beginnings to his rise to fame.

From the Buddy Holly Center I rode directly to the location of his last performance before his untimely death, The Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, IA. My route takes me north to Amarillo, where I have breakfast. I wondered why all the tables had a dusty coating on them. According to staff at the Whataburger they had a prankster toss a package of firecrackers into the dining room earlier that night and they are still cleaning up. After breakfast it is northeast to Pampa, TX, where I make the first fuel stop. The sun is beginning to rise and the sky is beautiful.

After Pampa I head north towards Dodge City, KS where I take US50 to Kinsley for the next fuel stop. Salina, KS is a corner receipt as well as a lunch stop. A Subway sandwich takes care of lunch. This stop marks the halfway point in the ride today. Rain clouds are forming across my route towards York, NE, so I put on my rain slicker.

York, NE, is also a corner receipt. The rain is behind me now so I stash the rain slicker. On I-80 the pace is picked up a bit and I make De Soto, IA in good time. This is the last fuel stop before Clear Lake and is also a corner receipt. (On a side note, I spy a beautiful 1960 Ford F100 a few pumps over and take a few pics of it for my nephew. He Loves old Fords.)

The final leg is upon me. It has been a great ride with the winds still at my back most of the day and they continue.

Upon arriving at Clear Lake I must go to the location of Buddy’s final performance, the Surf Ballroom. While there I spy the monument dedicated to all the men who died in that plane crash. From here I continued to the crash site glasses memorial about six miles north. To make this ride complete I walked the footpath to visit the memorial at the actual crash site. After taking some time to reflect on the events of sixty years ago I rode back into Clear Lake to get the final fuel receipt. The mileage total is 1,037, total time 18:05.

Thank you Tom for your suggestion. It has been a wonderful experience.

PS: After this ride I discovered that Buddy’s elementary school was Roscoe Wilson Elementary. That school still exists today. If you attempt this tribute ride consider adding it to your schedule.
 
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