By Bill Swart, F168147
The 100%ers chapter of FMCA is a fun-loving group whose membership includes full-timers who have no residence other than their motorhomes. The chapter received its charter on March 6, 1989, and has four founding members still active: R.J. and Fran Baum, F54118; Ed and Pat Ruese, F28117; Doug and Sharon Thiessen, F92470; and Jim Valentine, F85118.
As our chapter is part of the International Area, we hold our rallies throughout the United States and Canada. Here are several of the interesting places we’ve visited.
John and Peggi McDonald, F71504, hosted the Canadian Invitational Rally in Toronto. During this gathering we presented a warm-up blanket to Silver Classic, a 2-year-old filly who ran her maiden race that day “” and won. A daylong tour of Toronto gave rally-goers a comprehensive view of this multicultural city, and a farewell dinner at a well-known local restaurant highlighted a busy week of events.
Rally masters Neal and Sarah Kellum, F202474, welcomed us back to Canada for a rally at the famous Calgary Stampede. We enjoyed parades, chuck wagon races, and a rodeo.
Our rally in Hurricane, Utah, which featured visits to Zion and Bryce Canyon national parks, was hosted by Tim and Sharon Barnett, F87267, and Horst and Trudi Bettmer, F109779. This rally was a laid-back, do-it-yourself gathering with plenty of time to explore the area.
Everyone enjoyed the fall colors of Compton, New Hampshire, during our Northeast rally, as well as the New England chowders prepared by rally masters Tony and Pattie Beskos, F150022, and Harold and Ann Morschhauser, F162703. Volunteer servers dressed for breakfast in hair curlers, robes, and fuzzy slippers, and creative and talented members put on a fashion show that brought down the house with laughter.
Our Oktoberfest rally in Mount Angel, Oregon, hosted by Doug and Sharon Thiessen, offered attendees a look at many handcrafted items made by local artisans, including hand-tied brooms, Christmas ornaments, and jewelry. The Sturgis Falls Fair, with plenty of music and entertainment, highlighted our rally in Waterloo, Iowa, which was organized by Arnie and Norma Farber, F154413. A fantastic dinner held at the local Elks Lodge topped off the event.
New Orleans’ Mardi Gras was the scene of a rally hosted by Jack and Lucie Crippen, F18774; Wayne and Carole Overman, F102493; Paul Ferrenti and Barbara Lang, F148614; and Joe and Liz Coleman, F214642. Memorable features of this gathering included homemade gumbos prepared by Wayne and Carole, a boat ride on the Mississippi River, and several Mardi Gras parades.
Our rally at Laguna Seca racetrack in Monterey, California, hosted by Hank Asch, F79715, and the late Helen Hitchner, thrilled us with visits to the famous track, a trip to see elephant seals at the state park, wonderful meals, and millennium coffee cups to remember the festivities.
Rally masters Bill and Karen Swart, F168147, and Chris and Caroline Konczey, F166890, brought us together in Temecula, California, for a rally that included winery tours and casino visits. Homemade meals each day offered a selection of items to entice the palate. Harold Morschhauser stated, “This is a 40-pound rally.”
Many other rallies are being planned, including an event at Balloon Fiesta Park in Albuquerque, New Mexico. As you can see, our rallies are broad in scope and mingled with many enjoyable hours of frivolity and socializing.
Being part of a chapter includes helping out at rallies and FMCA international conventions, and members of the 100%ers chapter can be counted on to volunteer. We continue to participate in the Youth Activities programs at FMCA international conventions; as tram drivers for the handicapped; and as servers at ice cream socials. We also will serve as greeters at the upcoming International Area Rally in Claremore, Oklahoma, April 15 through 18, 2004.
If you’re a full-timer, we invite you to become part of our chapter and enjoy the camaraderie, knowledge, and experiences of those who are members.
For more information about the 100%ers chapter, contact FMCA’s Chapter Services Department at (800) 543-3622.