Adopt A Highway in Pop Culture

The Adopt A Highway Program is more than just signs on the side of the highway. After years of being in the public eye, the program has managed to transcend from just being on the highways, to becoming permanently ingrained into our popular culture. The Adopt A Highway Program is referenced in an array of varying types of media!

The Program is mentioned in daily comics, including the long running comic strip “Shoe” and even in The New Yorker Magazine:

cartoon
cartoon

The Adopt A Highway Program has also made its way into some of our favorite television shows. Bette Midler guest stared in an episode of The Simpsons, in which she hysterically spoofs herself. Bette, and avid supporter of the Adopt A Highway Program, is approached by Bart and Lisa Simpson while she is cleaning her section of the highway. In classic Simpsons fashion, Bette gets over the top vengeance when she catches somebody littering her highway:

 
 

Not to be out done, in an episode of Seinfeld tilted “The Pothole,” the Adopt A Highway Program becomes an integral part of the episodes plot. Jerry’s neighbor, Kramer, runs over a sewing machine in the road and decides to take matters into his own hands by adopting a stretch of highway. The silliness escalates, in a way that can only happen on Seinfeld, when Kramer decides that he is going to repaint the lanes on his highway. Changing his highway from four lanes to two lanes, or as he states in the episode, a “two lane comfort cruise.” The episode reaches the pinnacle of ridiculousness when Elaine loses a sewing machine from the back of her car, while Kramer tries to change his highway back using flammable paint remover. Then along comes Newman:

 
 

Of course these things do not represent what the Adopt A Highway Program is in reality. We certainly do not cause people to crash into mountainsides as punishment for littering or encourage our sponsors to repaint the lines on their sponsored highways, but the exaggerated satire does makes us a laugh, while keeping all those sponsor signs and the work we all do upfront and relevant.