Saturday, September 1, 2007

Motel 6 & Century Bowl

Returning from Anaheim, let's exit Highway 99 and rest for a bit at the Motel 6 in Merced. This chain was started in 1962 and this unit was probably one of the first 50 or so. Unlike a modern Motel 6, this one featured an attached restaurant and bar.

After 40 years, the pool area layout hasn't changed much. This veteran lodge now flies under the Super 8 banner but otherwise looks to be a survivor. The very tall Richfield gas station sign remains but now pushes the Vallero brand.

Just down the road, the long-shuttered Century Bowl awaits it's fate. This classic alley used to be a friendly haunt for those seeking a little ten-pin fun, and for now the great sign continues to call out to passers-by. But the fate of this urban relic appears all but certain. Does Merced really need another Walgreens? Perhaps, but it will be sad to see this old palace torn apart and hauled away...leaving one final 'open frame' on the community scorecard.

5 comments:

Victor Stapf said...

I love that Century Bowl sign. So weathered!

walterworld said...

Yes---It has quite a patina. From what I gather, Century Bowl closed in the mis 90's. Here's a recent article about it in the Merced paper:

http://www.mercedsunstar.com/local/tiplist/story/13874026p-14443469c.html

Hrundi V. Bakshi said...

Hey! Just found your blog and think it's great! Love the fact that your "NOW" photos are staged from approx. the same angle and distance. I'm sure it's lots of hard work. Great research, super entertaining - you sir, are BOOKMARKED.

walterworld said...

Thank you Hrundi---

Glad you liked my site.

I get a big kick from visiting these somewhat forgotten places; it's sort of a mix of time travel and detective work.

Take care and thanks again for taking the time to leave a comment.

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