Six-Staters Rendezvous In Sedalia
Family & Friends
By Suzan Rash, F219015
“Trailhead Rendezvous” was the theme for the South Central Area’s 34th Six-State Rally, September 25 through 28, 2007, at the Missouri State Fairgrounds in Sedalia, Missouri. The theme was chosen since Sedalia touts itself as the “Home of Rails, Trails, and Ragtime.” This was the seventh time the Six-State Rally has been held at this site, and the 2007 event was a terrific time for all.
Six-State Rally Association officers and cadre arrived early to prepare the fairgrounds and set up the directional signs, which were made by Shelby Rash, assisted by volunteers from the Coaches for Christ chapter. This group of officers included Six-State Rally Association president and South Central Area vice president Fred Kennedy and his wife, Lou; senior vice president Ben Loganbill and his wife, Sue; South Region vice president Dave Davies; secretary Irene Renfro and her husband, Dave; treasurer Tom Drennon and his wife, Jeanette; and immediate past president Tony Innocenti and his wife, Geri.
Special thanks to members from the Arkansas Travelers, Coaches for Christ-South Central, Happy (OK) Wanderers, Heartland Execs., Kansas Twisters, Ozark Ridge Runners, and the Sooner Coaches chapters for volunteering their services to make this such a great rally.
One of the nicest aspects of staging the rally at the Missouri State Fairgrounds is that everyone had full hookups (30-amp electric, water, and sewer). A total of 593 coaches were in attendance, including 539 family coaches, 36 vendor live-ins, and 18 display units. Parking captain Steve Pickens and his wife, Vickie; parking lieutenant Bob Snyder, and his wife, Judy; and volunteers from the Kansas Twisters showed those arriving where to park for registration and then directed them into their final parking spots. Family registration was under the leadership of Thelma Hebert and her husband, George, while commercial registration was handled by Jean Lawhorn and her husband, Jim, who were assisted by volunteers from the Happy (OK) Wanderers.
The indoor vendors were under the direction of T.J. Mears and his wife, Zona, and Jim McCabe. Many exhibitors from past rallies were in attendance, as were several new vendors we hope also will be involved in future Six-State rallies. Door prize captain Syble Hall and her husband, Sonny, thanked the vendors and other companies and chapters for their generous donations.
On Monday, September 24, the annual golf scramble was held. Taking first place was the team of Jack Collins, L.R. Gilbert, Eileen Gilbert, and Hazel Graham, while two other teams tied for second. The longest-drive award went to Ed Lee, and the closest-to-the-pin prize went to Bill McGuire.
On Tuesday rally activities began with the opening of the indoor exhibits and the quilt display. The quilt display was under the leadership of Ann Bailey and her husband, Pearce. Ann reported that the South Central Area chapters donated a total of 425 quilts, plus some nice teddy bears from one chapter. Most of the quilts and the teddy bears were donated to groups in the Sedalia area, while 60 of the quilts/blankets went to the Institute of Surgical Research Burn Unit at Brooke Army Medical Center in Fort Sam Houston, Texas. Unfortunately, we had to cancel the annual pet parade because of rain. However, Tuesday’s “Dealer Block Party” went on between small showers.
Rod Sartwell and his wife, Ethel, planned four great nights of entertainment. Kicking off the evening entertainment on Tuesday was Keith Longbotham, “Being Himself.” Keith and his backup performer on the banjo and many other instruments played a variety of music and told stories and jokes along the way. This duo had entertained at the Six-State Rally the previous year in Beaumont, Texas, and was invited back again.
On Wednesday night, we welcomed Carl Acuff Jr., a relative of country music star Roy Acuff, to the stage for a show that no one will soon forget. His performance featured something for everyone, including country, gospel, and old-time rock and roll. He was accompanied by a band that included two guitar players, a keyboardist, and a drummer.
Thursday night brought “The Rivoli Revue,” a show that featured outstanding vocals from the husband-and-wife duo of Ron and Kay Rivoli. Whether you like pop, standards, country, gospel, or rhythm and blues, Ron and Kay belted out hits from the 1940s through the 1990s. Their RV parody songs, written by Kay, are hits with audiences everywhere.
Friday night featured Gary Welch, a talented singer and accomplished acoustic guitar and banjo player. From his cowboy hat down to his boots, you can tell that he is definitely country at heart.
On Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings, rally attendees were treated to breakfast. Irene Renfro, along with George Hebert and Pearce Bailey, kept things moving smoothly at all the breakfasts. Wednesday featured coffee and doughnuts, while on Thursday and Friday attendees enjoyed pancakes and sausages catered by Chris Cakes. You never knew where or how you might get your pancakes, since the cooks have a habit of throwing them in the air and letting you catch them on your plate.
One of the main events for the women during the rally was the Red Hat Luncheon, which took place on Wednesday and was attended by 203 ladies. The room was filled with a sea of red hats and purple clothing. The hostesses for the luncheon were Irene Renfro and Sue Loganbill. Chaplain Ron Wadley, wearing a red baseball cap, gave the invocation. This was followed by Kay Rivoli singing “Red Hat Society,” a song she wrote for these ladies. A very nice salad luncheon was followed by an interesting program on the history of apparel, presented by Carolyn Miller from Nostalgia Vintage Apparel.
Later that afternoon those interested congregated for a seminar to discuss newsletters and Web sites and to hand out awards to the top chapters in each category. The Happy (OK) Wanderers were recognized for having the best newsletter, followed by the West Tex Travelers and the Country Coach Texans. The top Web site award was given to the Midwest Prairie Schooners, while the Lone Star and Covered Wagons chapters tied for second. Thanks to all the chapters that participated.
Thursday was theme day, with many people dressed as Western trail riders or pioneers. One of the main attractions that afternoon was the ice cream social, which was a welcome treat on the warm day. Folks also had the opportunity to attend a quilt demonstration and social put on by the Sedville Crazy Quilters in the quilt display area. Besides being very creative quilters, they were good cooks, too. Before the entertainment that night, all of the quilts made by area chapters were presented to assistant rally treasurer Dan Couch to be divided up between the Swoops Ridge Geriatric Center in Kansas City, Missouri; the Sedville Crazy Quilters, which will distribute them to different charities in the area; and Brooke Army Medical Center, to be given to young men and women who are doing so much to support our country.
The designated charity for this rally’s raffle was Habitat for Humanity. Each day tickets were sold for a 50-50 drawing, with sales bringing in $1,391. A check in that amount was presented to Jeff Koetting, a representative of the Sedalia, Missouri, branch of Habitat for Humanity.
A big thank-you goes to crafts captain Grace Lancon and seminar captain Marilee Couch for putting together a terrific lineup of craft and educational seminars. Crafters had the opportunity to make delightful coasters, decorate a “Floozie Flip Flop,” make Christmas Angels, decorate coat hangers, and design beautiful lighted wreaths. The seminars had something for everyone. Topics included RVing in Mexico or Alaska, cleaning the motorhome, learning about RV electrical circuits, and maximizing your travel wardrobe. In addition to these seminars, rally-goers had the opportunity to attend FMCA-sponsored RV education classes, which included the RVSEF Safe Driving Course; Coach Weight and Tire Safety; and Fire and Life Safety in Your RV.
A special presentation was made to outgoing South Central Area vice president Tony Innocenti and his wife, Geri. The couple was given a metal sculpture with the name “Innocenti” at the top that could be placed over the gate at their ranch in Texas.
On Saturday morning, as most attendees said their good-byes and began heading back home or on to new adventures, the officers and cadre already were discussing plans for the 35th Six-State Rally, which is scheduled for September 24 through 29, 2008, in North Little Rock, Arkansas. May we all continue to enjoy the motorhome lifestyle and gather again for a very unique and exciting rally that is being planned for 2008. We hope to see you and a friend for the 35th Six-State Rally.
Rocky Mountain Celebrates 40 Years
By Jim Hiss, F207450
The Rocky Mountain chapter celebrated its 40th anniversary during a rally held July 20 through 22, 2007, at the Fort Collins Lakeside Resort in Fort Collins, Colorado. We had 126 current and former members in attendance, and I’m sure all the old tales swapped during the rally happened exactly the way they were told. Well, almost anyway. Where’s the fun in letting a few facts stand in the way of a good story?
This chapter began when RVers in 16 coaches met in Golden, Colorado, in July 1966. A ratification meeting was held in October, and FMCA notified the new chapter that it had been approved and chartered in January of 1967. When the chapter first began it encompassed Montana, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, and the western portions of Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Obviously, having members scattered through an area this large was a little unwieldy, so individual chapters began to break off to better serve their local members. The Rocky Mountain chapter is now based in Colorado and linked to our neighboring chapters through FMCA’s Rocky Mountain Area and the Rocky Mountain Motorcoach Association.
Reading back through the records, courtesy of our historian, B.J. Smith, you have to be impressed with the effect that weather has had on our get-togethers. Some of the rallies sound like the travels of Lewis and Clark on a bad day. Floods, sandstorms, snow, howling winds, getting bogged down in the mud, you name it. I haven’t seen any avalanches or wolf pack attacks, but I may have missed them. And we’re doing this for fun? Actually, we do.
The chapter now includes approximately 110 member families, and usually around 30 to 35 attend each rally. Given the playground we have in our backyard, it’s hard not to have fun. Consider that we’ve witnessed the sun rise in Breckenridge as hot air balloons lifted off over the mountains; steam engines heading out of Durango and winding up the canyons; elk bugling in Estes Park in the fall, with the golden aspens quivering; old mine roads and eye-popping scenery in Creede; and on and on. We have much to choose from.
Like most chapters, we sponsor charities, and last year we supported Respite Care in Fort Collins. This organization offers care for the handicapped, ranging from a few hours to a few weeks, to allow regular caregivers a chance to catch their breath. I don’t think most of us realize the load carried by caregivers, and we’re proud to help out here. The charitable funds come from 50-50 raffles, donations, and the auction of an old wine bottle under very dubious conditions. That wine bottle has turned up about 10 times now. And our fearless leader, chapter president Tom Rose, has no mercy as an auctioneer. Scratch your nose and it will cost you.
If you live in Colorado and would like more information about joining the Rocky Mountain chapter, contact Tom at (970) 663-2269 or send him an e-mail at [email protected]