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Lost Highway 99

Dennis Ziemienski traveled Highway 99 as a child, and was dazzled by the neon signs and Giant Orange stands. Now he has turned his memories into an exhibit at the Knowlton Gallery

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Posted: Saturday, September 11, 2010 12:00 am

Dennis Ziemienski fell in love with Highway 99 from the backseat of a Plymouth station wagon in the 1950s and ’60s. He sipped fresh-squeezed orange juice handed to him by someone inside of a giant orange-shaped stand.

During these family trips, his eyes would follow the neon piping lighting words like “Milt’s,” “California Motel” and “Mearle’s Drive-In.” He watched men in caps and button-up shirts pump gas and young girls on skates deliver onion rings and thick malts. He watched palm trees, mid-century eucalyptus and row crops pass by, one by one.

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