Blue Whale of Catoosa, Catoosa
Categories: Landmarks, Tourist Spots
The Blue Whale of Catoosa is a waterfront structure, located just east of the town of Catoosa, Oklahoma, and it has become one of the most recognizable attractions on old Route 66.CreationHugh Davis built the Blue Whale in the early 1970s as a surprise anniversary gift to his wife Zelta, who collected whale figurines. The Blue Whale and its pond became a favored swimming hole for both locals and travelers along Route 66 alike.Originally, the pond surrounding the massive Blue Whale was spring fed and intended only for family use. However, as many locals began to come to enjoy its waters, Davis brought in tons of sand, built picnic tables, hired life guards, and opened it to the public.Public attractionOriginally called Nature’s Acres, Mr. Davis continued to add to the roadside attraction until it eventually included The Fun and Swim Blue Whale and the A.R.K. (Animal Reptile Kingdom). The attraction also featured Hugh’s brother-in-law, Indian Chief Wolf Robe Hunt, a full blooded Acoma Indian, who was famous, in his own right, for his Indian paintings and as a highly skilled silversmith. Chief Wolf-Robe Hunt once ran the Arrowood Trading post across the highway from the Blue Whale attraction.By 1988, the Davises were not able to continue managing the attraction, so they closed it to the public. In January 1990 Mr. Davis died followed by his wife Zelta in 2001. The park soon fell into disrepair, crumbling from neglect and weather. However, after a decade the people of Catoosa and employees of the Hampton Inn launched a fund-raising and volunteer effort to restore the Route 66 landmark. The Blue Whale was restored and repainted to its original brilliant blue. The adjacent picnic area has also been restored.For travelers who use our world travel planner, Catoosa holidays become easier to arrange, with trips to the Blue Whale of Catoosa and other attractions mapped out and timetabled.
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Not a lot of time is needed at this spot along 66 to enjoy the charm. The Blue Whaler's have done a wonderful job cleaning up the property. Try to get there when the gift shop is open.
OK...Tourist Traps exist everywhere...but, the Blue Whale may be the best of the best! It is funny...it is quirky...it is funny and fun! The Blue Whale was built as a "Tourist Attraction" along the Mo... read more »
I am sure this must have been a favorite spot for families to stop on the journey down Rt 66. A "swimming hole" with a twist for the kids. Picnic areas for the family, shade trees. I would have loved ... read more »
One of the best Rt. 66 stops we made. The story behind the whale is sweet and made the visit that much better.
A cute sight to see on Route 66. It's a good catch and release fishing spot too!
A great place of history!!! It is open year round 24/7. Gift shop may not always open due to the fact it is ran by volunteers. But you have 24/7 access to the blue whale and picnic area. Great for all ages, kids and adults! You can even climb up into the blue whale and look out the portholes.
Awesome historical Route 66 stop! Went on Sunday and you could still walk around although it says closed on google maps. The gift shop was just closed.
Your one chance to get inside a Whale's Head. .. . Beautiful place, and support their efforts to maintain and restore this wonderfully quirky Landmark.
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