By Ed Fennell, F433361
Members of the Blue Ridge Pioneers celebrated the chapter’s 25th anniversary during a rally held August 15 through 19, 2016, at the beautiful Anchor Down RV Resort on Douglas Lake in Dandridge, Tennessee.
Rally masters were Ed and Nancy Fennell and Mac and Doris Morris. Activities included boat rides on Douglas Lake; ice cream sodas at the fountain of the 106-year-old Tinsley-Bible Drug Co.; lunch at Bush’s Visitor Center in Chestnut Hill (home of Bush’s Baked Beans); and a great show — a tribute to Red Skelton — in Pigeon Forge. Another highlight was a cornhole tournament, won by new members Lee and Sheree Brown.
Thursday night’s weenie roast and anniversary celebration was attended by 16 member families. A certificate of appreciation was presented to the chapter by Bill Mallory, FMCA national vice president, Eastern Area, and Eastern Area officer Chris Holtzman.
Blue Ridge Pioneers History
Longtime member Bob Haught helped provide the following history of the Blue Ridge Pioneers. Originally, the chapter consisted of FMCA members from North Carolina and Virginia (the states the Blue Ridge Parkway passes through) as well as neighboring states. But being friendly folks, we invited others, including people staying in campgrounds where our rallies were held, and the chapter steadily grew.
Some members relocated to Florida, so the chapter began holding a rally or two in the Sunshine State during the winter months. In addition, a few “rolling rallies” were spread over one or two or more weeks in several campgrounds. We have always made special efforts to keep newcomers involved during their first couple of rallies.
The chapter traditionally has had a presence at area rallies (such as the Great Eastern Area Rally) and FMCA conventions. And a number of members in the Asheville/Hendersonville area of North Carolina have enjoyed simple social gatherings, such as a meal around Christmastime.
Blue Ridge Pioneers members have many great memories. We expect to create new ones as we continue to enjoy the motorhome lifestyle. For information about joining the chapter, please contact Mac Morris, firstname.lastname@example.org; (434) 821-9518.