Journey to the Center of the World
Driving down Interstate 8 in the desert of California, you get more of a sense of boredom than centrifugal force. However, if you make a stop in Felicity all 2 of the locals might say otherwise. It is the official “Center of the World”! Well, home to it at least. The Official Center of the World is a dot inside the pyramid next to the post office. The center of the world, or universe, can be anywhere but it is set by law in Felicity, CA.
There are some very interesting attractions that surround this official center of the world. Such as the history of the world, etched in granite. The Granite Museum-Walls tell the history of countries, humanity and a host of other entities. Each monument is 100ft long and designed to last 4,000 years. I suppose Jacques-Andre Istel (the Frenchman who founded felicity and the center of the world) thought books and the internet wouldn’t last.
There is a set of 25 ft. high stairs at the entrance to Felicity. They don’t actually lead to anywhere, yet just act as a sculpture. The stairs are section number 12 of the original stairway of the Eiffel Tower. The stairs weigh 6,600 lbs and required engineering and a building permit.
The Post Office was by far my favorite oddity. It was dedicated in December 1987 when thousands of small post offices were being closed due to the economy (sound familiar?). This tiny town of 2 received over 2,300 letters mailed the dedication day and the ceremony included a speech in Chinese by Consul Zhou of the People’s Republic of China who traveled 600 miles for the occasion. It’s operated by the town at a whopping cost of $1 to the Federal Government per year. The government now has 20+ un-cashed $1 checks on file.
Its places like Felicity and people like Jacques-Andre Istel that make life and road trip way more interesting…
Have you been to the center of the world or found something like this on a road trip? If so, tell us about it in the comment box below.
We’ve driven past that thing many times on trips from Phoenix to San Diego. We had no idea what it was, though. Thanks for enlightening us. Maybe we’ll stop next time!
Love your posts and videos. Keep up the great work.
Worth a visit for sure: weird, amazing and outrageous. Love these types of crazy stops.
Paul @ Driving Inertia
We just drove past that church and wondered about its story. Great post. Check out Slab City if you’re still in the area.
We drove past the Center of the World once before as well, second time we found ourselves in that area we had to stop! Glad you enjoyed the video. As for Slab City, we have a great video coming out on the Salton Sea, and Salvation Mountain so stay tuned!
That is so cool! I don’t think you guys are weird at all! 🙂
Hello McNav’s- I don’t think we’re weird either…..ha. -Jason
loved the vid…cliffhanger ending
I had no idea! Really interesting information.
Mary, It’s totally worth a stop! Likely the coolest roadside attraction we’ve seen to date. – Jason