The Breakfast Club 

The Knife & Fork

Breakfast Club Drops in on Seligman, West Side Lilo's

By Warren McIlvoy
13 July 2002

When the Breakfast Club event committee met in Payson last November, one of the items on the agenda was to think about "new" places to visit. One of the members suggested going to Demming, New Mexico with Seligman as our alternate. I believe that most folks know that the "alternate" is listed because if weather becomes and issue with the primary destination, then the alternate is used. However, the person that was to be in charge of setting this up, would not be able to attend due to a family emergency. So, with this in mind, I chose to promote our alternate into the primary position for the July event.

Our weather, which has been quite good for our events this year, was CAVU but with expected afternoon build-ups which is the rule for this time of the year. A direct route to Seligman would take you almost directly over Prescott Airport but I choose to take a more scenic route to the west of the Bradshaw Mountains and just to the west of the city of Prescott. Although the air was warm and a bit moist, the ride was smooth all the way to Seligman. Reports from the early arrivers to P23, said that the air was calm and we could use either runway. I had planed on using right traffic for 22 but about 6 miles out, I could hear folks using left traffic for 04. Not being one to go against the "flow", I changed my plans to "fit-in" with what was going on. I made the center field turn-off and taxied to the ramp to join those whom had already arrived.

Our dinning target for today would be West Side Lilo's. When we were here last year, this is the place that provided a few surprises. One item of interest to me was why is was call "West Side". I did not believe that the town of Seligman was big enough to have a "west side/east side". It turns out that the "West Side" make reference to its location on the west side of the famous and historic Route 66. Fair enough. The other surprise was that you had to be careful about what you ordered. Not because the food was questionable, but the fact that the portions were more that enough to over gross many of our aircraft. Last year, one of our folks ordered the breakfast special that included two of most everything: eggs bacon, sausage, and potatoes as well as a side of (your choice) toast, biscuit, or pancakes. Well, she ordered the pancakes thinking that they would be of the "silver dollar" variety. Wrong again senor. They were a full fledged, world class, varsity, belly buster, meal in themselves. We all grinned as she is a rather petite lady and knew that she would be a world of serious hurt if she tried to tackle these monsters by herself. I believe that she did take a few "complementary" bites to ease the guilt. From that experience, I was well aware that I would not be up to the challenge of downing these "boat anchors" by my self so I asked our waitress to limit the portion to "only two". Even at the reduced portion, I was only able to make a token dent in them but my wife was able to salvage my reputation by consuming more than I did, but there was still some left over. I wish that I knew more about this place other than Lilo Russell, a lady of German descent, has owned and run the place for many years and is a "hundred dollar hamburger" favorite.

The town of Seligman is rich in history and everything in sight, at least from what I could see along the famous main drag, is circa 1950. I took the liberty of coping some text from an Arizona travel web site. I have included it here for your perusal.

"Seligman is in Western Arizona. It is in Yavapai County. The town is located at the junction of Historic Route 66 and Interstate 40 and is equal driving distance from Flagstaff, Kingman and Prescott.


Seligman honors Route 66 with its dedication of the longest remaining stretch of the ""Mother Road"", which goes from Seligman to Kingman. The town sits at an elevation of 5,242 feet. The climate is mild all year round with a winter low temperature of 25 degrees and summer high temperature of 90 degrees. This town loves to share its past.

Community Features:

There is one attraction that will end up being one of the highlights of your visit. Delgadillo''s Snow Cap is a place that you just must stop in to see. The Snow Cap has been around since Route 66 came through town. It appears to be just a wild little snack shop in the middle of the valley, but I assure you it is much more than that. Take my word for it. Everyone loves to stop in for a bite.

There are outdoor activities near town. Just outside of Seligman is a unique outdoor spot that you will enjoy visiting. The Grand Canyon Caverns offers a tour that will take you back in time. Here, you will see what the earth is like 21 stories below. Seligman is known for being a stop along Route 66. Route 66 is one of the most famous roads in America. You will learn a lot about the original Route 66 and of course you will want to take a spin down the old highway. There are several businesses in Seligman that cater to those interested in the nostalgia of the ""Mother Road.""


Seligman has gone through several name changes. In the beginning, the area was known as Mint Valley. It was the valley where the pioneers on the Beale Wagon Road passed through in the mid 1800''s.
Later, the town was called Prescott Junction. In 1886, Tom Bullock arrived in the area and convinced the residents in Prescott to gather money together to build a railroad line. The line connected Prescott to the Atlantic and Pacific main line, where Seligman is today. They called that point, Prescott Junction.

Bullock was charged to build the rail connecting these points by a designated date. This deal soon became a hot topic in Prescott. Many people began taking bets on whether Bullock could get the task done in time. He did meet the deadline and the rail was used by two steam engines. At first, the train had to run backwards back to Prescott Junction because there wasn't a turntable in Prescott.

The first post office was established in the same year the line was constructed. When the Prescott and Central Arizona Railroad went out of business, the rail between Prescott and Prescott Junction shut down too. It was at this time that Prescott Junction changed its name to Seligman. The name Seligman came from two brothers, who were part owners in the Aztec Land and Cattle Company. The Seligman brothers most importantly owned stock in the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad. In the late 1890''s, the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad became the Santa Fe Railroad. The railroad also moved its roundhouse to Seligman.

During the late 1920''s, the automobile became a popular means of transportation. Route 66 was constructed which connected Chicago to California. The road made Seligman a place where drivers stopped over for the night. Throughout the years, Route 66 was a boost to the town''s economy.

Seligman started to slow down in the late 1970''s and mid 1980''s. It was during this time, that Interstate 40 replaced Route 66 and bypassed the town, coupled with the Santa Fe Railroad closing down its operations.
Seligman continues to relive its past. The town has worked hard to preserve the nostalgia of Route 66. In 1987, the State of Arizona dedicated Route 66 from Seligman to Kingman. This stretch of road is the longest remaining stretch of the original highway. The preservation of the past is evident in town with many businesses catering to Historic"

For our return trip back to the valley, I choose the more direct route that would take over the Prescott Airport. But being up at 9500', this would put us above the Class D airspace so that we would still be able to converse with other Breakfast Club aircraft. We had some updraft and some light chop but all-in-all, a good trip back. When we began our letdown, we could feel the much warmer air and we knew that we were deep into summertime flying in Arizona.

The Seligman Group We had a number of new folks with us on this event as well as many of our regulars. A special thanks to the new folks for joining with us and I hope that you enjoyed the fellowship of the Breakfast Club regulars.

What's Next?
The Breakfast Club's August event will see us heading in the same direction but landing a bit short at Prescott and Suzie's Skyway Café. It's been a while since we have been here so it should be a welcome encore. We also have our weekend end event to Durango, Co for the weekend of the 23rd. This should provide a very welcome relief from the desert heat. September will see us making an encore visit to Monument Valley and Gouldings for a great breakfast meal. That's all for now but remember, fly safe.