By Jerry Yeatts, F390000
I’m not sure what happened to the summer months. FMCA’s 88th Family Reunion and Motorhome Showcase in Gillette, Wyoming, a celebration of this association’s 50th anniversary, took place at the beginning of the summer. The national office staff usually is working at full steam during June and July to prepare for a Reunion that typically occurs in August. So, with the June event, it would seem that this year would be different. But summer is already winding down, and it’s time for the kids and grandkids to head back to school.
If you traveled to Gillette for the 50th anniversary celebration, I hope you had an opportunity to visit the Nostalgia Room, to tour the vintage motor coaches, and to take a glimpse into the story of how FMCA has become such a beloved organization among motorhome enthusiasts. Seeing the jackets emblazoned with FMCA convention hash marks; the TATs (Teen-Age Travelers) flag; photos of chapter activities; and valued keepsakes from members gave me an appreciation of the rich history of this association. And, after viewing The Peaceful Invasion, a documentary film about FMCA’s “Jubilee ’73” summer convention in Du Quoin, Illinois, I can sense a certain “coolness” in being an FMCA member.
Labor Day seems to be the unofficial end of summer, a time when our thoughts turn to many fall activities. Just as school is beginning for students, FMCA members have some great opportunities through chapter gatherings and area rallies to learn more about safe motorhoming, preparing for that special RV trip, and choosing the correct insurance program, as well as to experience the fun, fellowship, and camaraderie of like-minded enthusiasts. The South Central Area Rally, a.k.a. Six-State Rally, will take place September 11-15, in Sedalia, Missouri. The Great Lakes Area Rally, GLAMARAMA, will be held September 18-22, in Goshen, Indiana. And, looking ahead a bit, the Eastern Area will have the GEAR (Great Eastern Area Rally) October 9-13, in York, Pennsylvania. All of these events provide seminars, exhibits, entertainment, and a whole lot of fun that will make you want to come back time and time again.
If you are planning to travel through Ohio in September, consider staying at the FMCA campground, located just 5 miles from the national headquarters. The campground has 15 full-hookup sites and nine electric-only sites. As a benefit, members receive a complimentary stay at the campground for two nights each month. Members who wish to stay longer can purchase additional nights for $20 each, depending on availability. Members are encouraged to call the national office to check availability and obtain directions: (513) 474-3622 or (800) 543-3622.
Also on the “cool” list for September is Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, North America’s largest Oktoberfest celebration, which runs during the weekend of September 20-22. Complete with German food, live music, dancing, and more, Cincinnati’s Oktoberfest celebration is the second largest in the world, as it attracts more than 500,000 people to town each year.
You may wish to plan an extended weekend in the Queen City and see the Cincinnati Bengals take on the Green Bay Packers at Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday, September 22, or watch the Cincinnati Reds host the New York Mets at Great American Ball Park, September 23-25. For college football fans, the University of Cincinnati Bearcats will battle the Miami of Ohio Redhawks just up the road in Oxford, Ohio, on Saturday, September 21. This will be the 118th contest for the Victory Bell, a continuation of the oldest current non-conference college football rivalry in the United States.
With so much to see and do in the Greater Cincinnati area, FMCA’s campground is a perfect location to base your stay. You can leave the motorhome there and take your towed vehicle into town.
I encourage you to not keep this coolness to yourself. Tell your family members and friends about this great association. During the month of September, anyone who is listed as a referral on a new member application automatically will be entered into a drawing to win an FMCA logo roll-up stadium blanket. You can see this new FMCA Store item by visiting FMCA’s Web site at www.fmca.com and clicking on the Motorhome Merchandise link on the landing page. The more members you refer, the more chances you’ll have to win.
How cool is that?!