Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Family Takes to the Open Road for Fun

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Family Takes to the Open Road for Fun

Article excerpt

Ah, the nostalgia of a road trip. Much has likely changed since that first journey as a child, but plenty of ways still exist to appreciate road tripping with the family and bring the best of "then" to "now."

SEAT SELECTION

A previous generation put down seats in the station wagon and created a giant play space in the rear of the car. While today's traveler is buckled into a single location, keep the same spirit by attaching a travel kit in an accessible bag or organizer to both front seat backs to hold plenty of diversions. Key items chosen just for individual tastes and ages to different colors for different people.

Just as then, breaks chosen to coincide with points of interest are desirable. Input before the trip smartly involves participation and knowledge of what will occur.

VEHICLE UPKEEP

When the Griswold family hit the road on its infamous trek to Walley World 35 years ago, gas rang up at $1.16 a gallon. Today's national average for a gallon of gas is $2.84 for regular unleaded, $3.39 for premium. It is important to prepare for a family road trip and avoid mechanical failures along the way with an oil change and checking a vehicle's other fluids, battery, wipers, tire tread and air pressure to ensure road-trip readiness.

If money or time is tight, a one-tank destination rather than a cross-country trek still can deliver a memorable family experience without taxing resources.

ENTERTAINMENT

With a goal of spending time together as a family, defining use of handheld devices and headphones may be required from the start. Appeal to the appropriate age with other interactive things to do. Old-school games like Make the Trucker Honk and competing to see who can find the most cows, wind turbines or whatever fits the region may be all-new to youthful minds.

I Spy and The Alphabet Game add free entertainment that encourages a look out the window at passing surroundings. …

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