Guidelines for Tip Submission
We love to receive visitor tips. Your keen eyes and descriptive powers can lead us to quirky places everyone can enjoy in the RoadsideAmerica.com collection. Our editors select which places are Roadside-caliber and which of your tips (if any) to post, as we stay focused on new information about the most offbeat attractions. Visitor Tips should provide new information and reasons other Roadside America fans might want to visit.
- Write About Sights, Sounds, Smells
Observations during your visit, factual details, things other travelers should watch for. Also, changes to attraction hours, directions, etc.
- Length: 20-100 words
Once submitted to us, tips aren't user-editable. We may edit for clarity and brevity. Really short tips may not be posted. Avoid personal pronouncements ("Lame," "Awesome," "Worth the trip" "Not worth the trip") -- we may edit those out or not post the tip. Convey your pleasure or displeasure with observations about an attraction. No need to mention geocaches or Pokemon sightings, or "super friendly staff," since they're everywhere.
- Submit Your Original Text Only
Use your own thoughts. Never copy text from another source (wikipedia, official attraction web pages, etc.) without attribution. Don't submit text you posted in a blog or a review on another site.
- Proofread Your Submission
Please carefully review your tip before submitting; incoherent speech-to-text (that's you, Siri) will be rejected. No #hashtags. No emojis.
- Photos: Submit Your Originals Only
Only send photos you shot personally, and you have permission from people in the photo. You must be the legal guardian of any children under age 18 appearing in your photos, provided to us with your permission.
- Photos: More Attractions, Less You
The main subject of an image should always be the attraction itself, not a "selfie." (Selfie Help). Send shots without dolls, personal road trip totems, rally banners, intrusive vehicles, etc.
- Photos: Best Quality
We may not use images due to quality (low resolution, shakiness, poor lighting, shot through car glass, reflection in museum glass) or repetition of what's already posted. Don't send screenshots from other apps/websites, and don't add a watermark, title, hashtag, photoshopped fakery, etc. We crop mercilessly.
Closed or Gone Attractions
Help keep our information current! Provide details and a photo -- such as an empty building or pedestal-- to help solidly confirm actual closings (vs. our inadequate directions). Did you visit personally, or read about it somewhere?
Places We Include
When you discover a place in your travels that is odd, outrageous, and all you talk about when you get home, RoadsideAmerica.com readers may also find it amusing or fascinating. Roadside America attractions are publicly accessible or visible: tourist attractions, classic tourist traps, museums, commercial/civic statues, historical markers for bizarre events, graves and memorials, unexplained phenomena, unusual natural features (rocks, trees, terrain, etc), unusual buildings, misplaced items (a landlocked submarine, a lighthouse in a desert), folk art environments. Yard art is permanent, large, profus,e and weird. Murals are not just historical, but hilarious, bizarre or uniquely awkward.
Places We Skip
RoadsideAmerica.com is not a comprehensive guide to all destinations, museums, historical houses, zoos, county fairs, events, or guided tours. To shape our unique collection of attractions, we apply these filters of pickiness:
- No: Beautiful
If "beautiful" is the first word that pops into your mind about a place, then it may not be right for RoadsideAmerica.com. Skip breathtaking vistas, hiking trails, pretty parks, and places of natural serenity, unless there's an oddity in among all that wonderfulness.
- No: "Normal" Historic Sites/Museums
We seek the unexpected, humorous or strange side of history. A county museum exhibiting even one oddity may qualify. We skip old mills/waterwheels, historic houses, most old timey soda fountains, and carousels (except the ones with mutant creatures). But we have a soft spot for the space program, nerdy technology, pop culture, crime and punishment, disasters, war relics, factory tours, and failed utopias.
- No: Important, Serious Architecture
We're less excited about (most of) Frank Lloyd Wright's masterworks than a house resembling a shoe, or Fred Flintstone's digs.
- No: Regular Restaurants
We want eateries with a quirky side -- a roof covered with old stoves, waiters who throw hot rolls at customers, a barbeque in a cave, a cafe shaped like a Hot Dog, etc. Please write about what makes it bizarre, rather than the wait service or food quality.
- No: Small/Temporary/Mass Produced Sights
- No Air-filled inflatables (gorilla, lobster, etc., such as at restaurants and used car lots).
- No Mass produced life-size statues (Elvis, Blues Brothers, Hot Dog squirting itself with mustard, saucy pirate gal).
- No standard issue decorative garden and yard bronzes (the little girl reading a book on a log, frog playing a violin, children in a fountain).
- No "Pop-Up" attractions: Current fad for temporary museums, exhibits, churches. Might merit a visit for locals, but too ephemeral for us to map.
- No: Low End of the Big Scale
40-ft. turtle statue -- worthy! 4-ft. turtle statue -- no! (What if it's a 4-ft. turtle that saved a baby's life? That we'd include.)
- No: Haunted Attractions With Nothing to See
We live in a time when, according to ghost hunt TV programs, every old building and home is haunted. At Roadside America, we focus on places with objects that can be seen and photographed: a plaque, a marker, an image of eternal anguish frozen in a window. Spooky places might qualify, but only if they're interesting when no ghosts are around.
- No: Regular Wildlife Sanctuaries, Zoos, Gardens, Nature Conservatories
Too normal and serious. Exception examples: sanctuary for retired circus gorillas, zoo with an albino animal section or an elephant grave.
- No: Temporary/Seasonal Holiday Sights
We make exceptions for amazing excess, but generally do not include local Christmas light houses, winter wonderland drives, short-lived Halloween attractions, etc.
- No: Escape Rooms: Too many, too trendy
We do not publish attractions that require trespassing on private property.