AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Amarillo Convention and Visitors Bureau and Texas Route partners announced the events planned to celebrate the centennial of Route 66.

Amarillo CVB and Texas Route 66 partners will begin the celebration of the 100th anniversary on June 1. Amarillo CVB director of tourism Christy King talked about the history of Route 66 and what it has brought to the community.

“Route 66 was born in 1926 and it really was the birth of the American road trip as it was first time people can travel from one end of the country to the other end of the country and this just opened it up for musical acts,” King said.

Last Saturday, President Biden announced his intent to appoint Amarillo National Bank chairman Richard Ware to the national Route 66 centennial commission. Congress established the commission to study and recommend activities to celebrate the 100th-year anniversary of Route 66. Ware said that Route 66 is a window into Texas, and it gives people a chance to see the real Texas.

“This brings Amarillo together and each of the cities in the Panhandle. Ties them together but also brings each of them to the Route 66 celebrations. So, for three years were going to be talking about this,” Ware said.

Big Texan Steak Ranch co-owner Danny Lee said that Route 66 has allowed Big Texan Steak Ranch and other businesses to be able to succeed because of all the tourism that it brings to the Panhandle.

“Route 66 is a big part, it a vital part of the Big Texan. 63 years later and we are still growing because of people coming into the Texas panhandle and wanting to know about Route 66 and the cowboy,” Big Texan Steak Ranch co-owner Bobby Lee said. “So, it’s important the prefect opportunity and a big responsibility and preserving that and taking that into the next generation with additional people and educating the kids now what route 66 is and what it means to our area.”

Texas Route 66 Festival events will begin on June 1 and end on June 10. The events include a bus tour of Route 66, rodeo cattle drive and a music festival at Starlight ranch.