By Don Moore, F154921
Since I took office as FMCA president, Darlene and I have tried to attend each FMCA area rally plus both FMCA international conventions every year. We meet new members and renew old friendships at these gatherings. Each area rally is a little different in its own way.
Typically, after the Western Area Rally in January and the Southeast Area Rally in February, the area rallies don’t get going again until after the May Executive Board and national committee meetings at FMCA headquarters in Cincinnati. But this year, two spring rallies took place before the May meetings.
The INTO Rally (hosted by FMCA’s International Area) took place April 19 through 22 in Harrington, Delaware, at the Delaware State Fairgrounds. It is a great facility for an area rally. “INTO Intrigue 007” was the theme this year. The weather was great, and almost 300 coaches were in attendance, as well as 35 display coaches.
Each morning, everyone enjoyed the hot breakfast. Something different this year was a James Bond trivia contest, and a search to help Harrington Bond III rescue Ms. Della Wayer. These intriguing games tested the minds of many. A combination block party and chapter fair was fun for all. Several rally-goers had a successful night at bingo. Plus, many participated in beanbag toss, bocce ball, and beanbag baseball. It seems FMCA members never tire of playing games. Great evening entertainment included music and comedy, and the ladies enjoyed a Red Hat luncheon.
Next was the Eastern Area Rally, held May 3 through 6, in Memphis, Tennessee. The event was set up at Agricenter International, another great facility for an area rally. Many of the same activities we enjoyed at INTO also were available at this rally, including evening entertainment and a Red Hat tea, plus activities such as line dancing with Jack and Doreen Ingle. On Thursday members could meet and greet animals from the Memphis Zoo, and on Saturday we enjoyed a gumbo/chili/barbecue cook-off, and later a Kentucky Derby party and hat competition. We watched the real Kentucky Derby on a big-screen TV. After that, a G.E.A.R. horse race was held outside, with members “riding” on stick horses. What a photo opportunity that was.
After this rally, Darlene and I headed north to FMCA’s national office in Cincinnati to attend Executive Board and committee meetings. Some very important decisions were made during that time regarding the association’s budget, which the Finance Committee spent many hours preparing and now awaits Governing Board approval.
The Governing Board will meet Monday, August 13, in Redmond, Oregon, during FMCA’s 78th International Convention, to consider the budget as well as to elect a new FMCA national president, senior vice president, secretary, and treasurer. In addition, they will vote on proposed changes to some Policies and Procedures. I hope your chapter’s national director is planning to attend. Be sure your chapter is represented by your national director, alternate national director, or a temporary delegate elected by your chapter. Chapter secretaries must let FMCA know by Monday, July 23, who will be representing their chapter.
July 23 also is the final day to get the reduced early-bird rate on your registration fee for the Redmond convention, which takes place August 13 through 16 at the Deschutes County Fair and Expo Center. Send in your registration by July 23, and you will save $30 over the gate fee. A mail-in registration form appears in this magazine; or, register by phone (800-543-3622) or online at FMCA.com. After the rates go up, you still can register over the phone or through the Web site until August 3. After August 3, you will need to register at the holding area in Redmond beginning Friday, August 10, at 7:00 a.m.
This event has been nicknamed “Rediscover Redmond,” because this will be the third FMCA convention to be held at the site. The weather is typically beautiful, as is the area itself, so it’s worth discovering “” or rediscovering “” as the case may be. Convention-goers will enjoy great entertainment, lots of shopping opportunities, and an amazing number of seminars about the motorhome way of life “” not to mention the chance to make new friends you may keep for life.
Please, too, let me remind you that if you meet someone as you travel this summer who also has a motorhome but isn’t an FMCA member, give them this magazine and tell them what you like about FMCA. Write your membership number on the member application form and if they join, you will get credit for it. Or, just call the FMCA national office and staff will gladly send you a magazine as part of a member recruitment kit.
Finally, on a lighter note, I’m sure you can add more reasons why you like to travel in your motorhome, but I have a few reasons why millions of people choose RVing over other modes of travel, such as planes or cars:
No lost luggage
You can travel with more clothes
You can talk on the cell phone anytime
You can get on the computer anytime
There’s more food on board than peanuts
Pets are welcome
You have more legroom
You can bring your favorite toys
There are no bathroom lines
You control your departure and destination
You know who slept in the bed the night before
Hope to see you in Redmond next month. Until then, happy trails!