Thursday, September 9, 2010

Cee-dee's Big Adventure: Wheel Inn

So how did two days off turn into a Big Adventure? Let me tell you! Since I started my new job, I've been working with split days off. (This was my idea to accommodate my training schedule for the upcoming LA Rock 'N' Roll Half Marathon.) But this week, I got a bonus day off, meaning I got two days off together. The Big Adventure started out as a trip to the LA County Fair. Then it grew into the Fair and the Wigwam Motel. Then it grew into the Fair, the Wigwam, and Cabazon for the Wheel Inn Restaurant and Hadley's. The outlets and Claremont were bonuses. But, before I get ahead of myself, let's go back to where the adventure began: the Wheel Inn.

Me, Dinny the Dinosaur and Mr. Rex go way back. I knew these boys even before I met them, having been introduced through "Pee-wee's Big Adventure." To this day, the dinos stand tall at the Wheel Inn, where Large Marge dropped Pee-wee off in the movie. You can still visit the gift shop inside Dinny's belly, just like old times. Since my last visit, the Wheel Inn has expanded to include the Cabazon Dinosaurs and Museum with animatronic dinos. I was on a Big Adventure and looking for cheeze, so I had to see the "World's Biggest Dinosaurs." Spoiler alert: the Museum has a blatant creationist stance, and, in some dioramas, dinos mix and mingle with tigers and lions. That said, the coolest part of paying the $6.95 admission is that you can climb the stairs inside Mr. Rex "at your own risk," all the way up to his mouth! That's the trade-off for the big slice of propaganda.

As a side bar, the grilled chile cheeseburger at the restaurant was just the cheese I needed to continue the Big Adventure!

Shockingly, the Wheel Inn doesn't seem to have a Web site. Their address is 50900 Seminole Drive in Cabazon, and the phone is (951) 849-7012. You really can't miss 'em off the 10!

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