Do you remember the man who walked across Route 6 from Cape Cod to Long Beach, California a few years ago? He spent almost a month here in Pennsylvania. Well, he is coming back…and we’re pleased to welcome him to the Coudersport Public Library on Thursday, October 23, at 6:30 pm.
Joe Hurley, author of ““Ten Million Steps on Route 6: A Fresh Look at America and Americans From Cape Cod to California”, will be presenting at quite a few libraries across PA Route 6 in mid – to – late October.
Joe is a retired newspaper reporter who spent most of his career at The News-Times in Danbury Conn., where, among other things, he wrote the consumer-humor column “Shallow Pockets”. He lives in New Milford, with his wife Pat. Same house, same wife, same out-of-control forsythia bushes for more than 30 years.
In 1999, Joe came to the startling realization that he knew almost nothing about the other side of the state, even though Connecticut is small enough to fit in the back pocket of Colorado or Nebraska. That year, photographer David Harple and Joe walked across Connecticut on Route 6 to give News-Times readers, and themselves, a better picture of their home state.
Later, Joe noticed that Route 6 stretched all the way to California – it was one of the nation’s few coast-to-coast highways and remains the longest continuous highway in the country. After retiring, Joe walked that 3,600-mile road while photographer Travis Lindhorst traveled along in the comfort of a car.
Their stories and pictures ran weekly in a dozen newspapers across the country. Now they’ve published a book about the adventure: Ten Million Steps on Route 6: A Fresh Look at America and Americans From Cape Cod to California.
Joe gives an inside look at the walk and the book in a program called “Behind the Scenes of Ten Million Steps.” It’s virtual trip across Route 6, with Joe leading the way and visitors following along with copies of the book in their hands. (Joe loans them for the journey.)
“Seeing the stories and pictures gives people a real sense of being there,” Joe said. But he added that the best part is taking the trip with a group of people. “It’s different every time because the people determine where we go by their questions and comments. I have an agenda, but it almost never goes the way I planned – and that’s what makes it fun.”
When he’s not doing the program Joe is pretty much a homebody, writing occasional magazine stories, attempting to play basketball with other old guys, and promising Pat he’ll get after those forsythia bushes someday.
Joe is also hoping to participate in some of PA Route 6’s craft fairs, markets and fall festivals on the weekends during his tour. Interested venues may contact Joe directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit Joe’s site at: www.Route6walk.com.
We hope you can join us for what promises to be an exciting evening with Joe! Please contact the library at (814)274-9382 with any questions.