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Posts tagged ‘ES VROC Reunion Rally 2015 and Vacation’

VROC Reunion Rally 2015: Returning Home – Dyersburg, TN to Dayton, OH

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 21; the post was published on October 19.]

Today is Day 11 of our 13-day vacation. We are traveling home from the VROC Reunion Rally, which was held in Eureka Springs, AR.

 

After eating a complimentary breakfast at the Quality Inn in Dyersburg TN, we were on the road en route Dayton OH by 6:45 am. The GPS displayed our ETA as 2:29 pm.

We made minimal stops, stopping only for fuel, to go to the bathroom and to eat lunch at a roadside picnic table.  We didn’t have any traffic to speak of until we reached the Louisville KY area. Traffic there wasn’t too bad and thinned out until we neared the Cincinnati OH area. Oh boy the traffic there! Driving in that traffic was hairy at times. The traffic moved at or greater than the posted speed, so that was good.

We checked into Best Western Plus Dayton South around 4:00 pm and then ate steak dinners at Chili’s Restaurant. We spent the evening watching TV, which we do very little of when home. We drove 441 miles today.

Today’s route:

VROC Reunion Rally 2015: Returning Home – Eureka Springs, AR to Dyersburg, TN

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 20; the post was published on October 18.]

Today is Day 10 of our 13-day vacation.  We are traveling home from the VROC Reunion Rally, which was held in Eureka Springs, AR.

 

We were showered, dressed and on the road by 6:45 am. Today was a travel day, Eureka Springs AR to Dyersburg TN.  We used the same route, in reverse, that we drove on Tuesday, September 15th. We made minimal stops along the way.  We stopped for breakfast at McDonald’s in Gassville, AR; we made a few fuel stops; and we made a photo stop in the city of Hardy, Arkansas.  The opportunity to stop in Hardy was the reason we used the same route that we followed on the last day of our trip to Eureka Springs.  Hardy was established in 1883 as a result of the construction of the Kansas City, Springfield, and Memphis Railroad.  The city has an old town feel to it.

WP_20150920_001We parked along Main Street in Hardy, AR.
You can see Bob’s motorcycle a short way up the road, and
my car is directly in front of the motorcycle.

Bob sat on a bench along Main Street, while I walked a couple blocks taking pictures along the way.

_LG18494 4x6Old Town Hardy Mural

This mural, located at the corner of Spring and Main Streets, was around the corner from where Bob was sitting.  In the summer of 1992 two artists, Ernie Patton and Kermit Kroll, were commissioned to paint this panorama of five long-gone landmarks. The mural is approximately 80 feet long and 23 feet high.  The five long-gone landmarks are: the Frisco Railroad Depot, an old gas station, the Old Iron Bridge that used to span Spring River, Wahpeton Hill, and the Beck House.  If desired, you may read more about each of these landmarks by clicking on the above link “Old Town Hardy Mural”.

I found along Main Street what appeared to be a newer mural of Hardy’s history.

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Hardy History Mural

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Further down Main Street I found a lovely city park.

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I am standing in the city park, as I took the pictures shown above and below.

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_LG18509 4x6The city park is located ahead, on the left.

_LG18502 4x6Sharp County Courthouse (historic)

For more than seventy years, Sharp County had two county seats, one in Hardy and the other in Evening Shade. In 1967, the Arkansas General Assembly abolished the dual county locations, and Ash Flat was designated the seat of government for the combined county.

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I took these two pictures, as I was walking back to where I had parked my car.

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These two pictures I took for my sister-in-law, Dorothy, who is from the UK.

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We would have eaten at the British themed cafe, Pig ‘n Whistle, if it had been lunch or dinner time.  As it was, our stop in Hardy happened mid-morning.

 

We arrived in Dyersburg, TN and checked into Quality Inn around 2:00 pm. We drove 296 miles today. It was an easy day. The sky cooperated and kept the sun behind clouds, for the most part, when it would have been in our eyes driving east. In addition, traffic was fairly light.

 

Today’s route:

VROC Reunion Rally 2015: Branson, MO

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 19; the post was published on October 17.]

Today is Day 9 of our 13-day vacation. We are in Eureka Springs, AR attending the annual Vulcan Riders and Owners Club (VROC) Reunion motorcycle rally.

Jim “Skid” invited Bob and me to join he and Sandy for lunch in Branson, Missouri.  Bob and I had talked about going to Branson while on vacation, but we had not yet made the trip.  We readily agreed to accompany “Skid” and Sandy to lunch.  We departed the Motel 62 in Eureka Springs, via motorcycle, around 10:00 am.  Our first stop was a fuel stop in Berryville, AR.

_LG18413 4x6Fuel Stop in Berryville, AR

 

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Scenery between Berryville, AR and the Missouri State Line

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We stopped in the town of Blue Eye, where Sandy and I had our picture taken standing in both Missouri and Arkansas.

WP_20150919_001Sandy and I standing on the Arkansas-Missouri State Line

 

We rode north on Missouri Route 13 through Kimberling City to West Branson and then followed Missouri Route 76 into Branson.

_LG18418 4x6Kimberling City, MO
Approaching Bridge that crosses over Table Rock Lake

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_LG18421 4x6Kimberling City, MO
Crossing Bridge over Table Rock Lake

 

_LG18422 4x6Missouri Route 13
Approaching right turn onto Missouri Route 76

 

Missouri Route 76 is Branson’s most famous street, where it is known as “76 Country Boulevard”, and features many of the entertainment theaters for which Branson is famous.

_LG18424 4x6Both Sandy and I took several pictures along Missouri Route 76.

_LG18425 4x6Entrance to Silver Dollar City

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Vigilante Extreme ZipRider

_LG18431 4x6Wooden Roller Coaster

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_LG18436 4x6Heavy Metal High Rise Go-Cart Track

_LG18438 4x6Ronald Reagan hanging out in a souvenir parking lot
The statue was located across from the Heavy Metal High Rise Go-Cart Track.

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Lost Treasure Golf

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The Lost Treasure Golf attraction is two amusements in one:
a mining train that takes you to the top the mountain to the first golf course holes, and
two 18-hole miniature golf courses.

_LG18447 4x6Lost Treasure Golf Course

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Ripley’s Believe It or Not

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We ate lunch at the Jackie B. Goode’s Uptown Cafe, a 1950s style diner.

_LG18455 4x6Uptown Cafe

_LG18456 4x6Sitting in front of the Uptown Cafe is a yellow taxi, a 1953 Henry J. Kaiser.

Sandy and “Skid” try to come to the Uptown Cafe each year, during the VROC Reunion Rally. They stayed in Branson one year and could walk to this restaurant from their hotel. The sandwiches that we ordered were good. Sandy had a root beer float too, which she thoroughly enjoyed.  I wished I had ordered a root beer float as well.  It looked really good!  The Uptown Cafe has free live entertainment, but there was no entertainment while we were there.

After lunch, we continued a short way down Missouri Route 76. We soon turned off that route and headed to the Table Rock Lake.

_LG18457 4x6The Titanic Museum sat across the road from the Uptown Cafe.

_LG18458 4x6King Kong at the Hollywood Wax Museum caught me by surprise!

_LG18460 4X6Hollywood Wax Museum
Mount Rushmore with John Wayne, Elvis, Marilyn, and Charlie Chaplin

_LG18461 4X6It looks like “Skid” was giving the peace sign to someone, as we were
passing by Baldknobbers and the Melody Lane Inn on the left.

_LG18464 4X6We passed by this very big rooster, wearing a vest and bow tie.

_LG18467 4X6Grand Country Music Hall

_LG18468 4X6Grand Country Farm Mini-Golf

According to information that I found on the Internet, this is an outdoor mini-golf course that features life size animated farm animals, a milk shed, water tower, horse barn, ponds, windmill, outhouse and a chicken coop. Sensors bring this course to life by setting off sound effects and animations throughout the game.

From Missouri Route 76 we took Fall Creek Road to Missouri Route 165.  We soon crossed over the Table Rock Lake Dam.

_LG18479 4x6Table Rock Dam

We stopped briefly at the Dewey Short Visitors Center, located at the south end of the Table Rock Dam.

_LG18482 4X6Dewey Short Visitors Center

From the visitors center observation deck we saw the Showboat Branson Belle.

_LG18484 4X6the Branson Belle

 

While at the Dewey Short Visitors Center, we saw a Duck bus cross over the Table Rock Dam.

_LG18488 4X6Ride the Duck bus, crossing over the Table Rock Dam
I have seen Duck buses at other places that we have visited.
I have yet to ride a Duck bus.

 

Here is one last picture from our day trip to Branson.  As we passed through Oak Grove, AR I happened to catch a glimpse of a picturesque shack.  This looks like an interesting stopping place…perhaps during another trip to Eureka Springs.

_LG18493 4X6Hillbilly Glass Shack

 

Thank you “Skid” and Sandy for a most enjoyable day trip to Branson, MO!

 

Back at the hotel, Bob and I reserved our room for the VROC Reunion Rally 2016. We are not positive we will go next year, but we wanted to reserve a room just in case. We sat in the parking lot, talking with friends for a while before I returned to our hotel room to write in my journal and to begin packing for our trip back home.

We ate dinner at Grandma’s Beans and Cornbread with several friends  Bob had a chicken wrap with chips. I had a hot dog with coleslaw and chips. We shared a hot blackberry cobbler with ice cream.

Back at the hotel, the Kawasaki banners were being taken down and folded up for next year.

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 Kawasaki banners being taken down

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The VROC Reunion Rally has come to an end.  We said our goodbyes this evening and finished packing. We hope to be on the road by 7:00 am tomorrow.

Today’s route:

VROC Reunion Rally 2015

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 18; the post was published on October 14.]

This blog post continues Day 8 of our 13-day vacation. We are in Eureka Springs, AR attending the annual Vulcan Riders and Owners Club (VROC) Reunion motorcycle rally.

So far, in past blog posts, I have shared the following VROC Reunion Rally events:

Susan’s Bachelorette Party
the
Outlaw Willie show
Susan and Joe’s Wedding

This blog post provides more details about the rally and Friday’s events.

With the exception of a few hours this morning, Bob and I spent the day at rally headquarters, the Motel 62 in Eureka Springs.

_LG18396 4x6Motel 62
VROC Reunion Rally Headquarters
Those at the table are selling raffle tickets and collecting BBQ donations.

_LG18386 4x6Selling raffle tickets and collecting BBQ donations

Throughout the 5-day rally, the hotel parking lot is where we gathered to converse with our friends…long-time friends, new friends and friends whom we had met only via Facebook or VROC forums.

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A few snaps of parking lot socializing

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We had been Facebook friends with one VROC member for 5 years and met him and his girlfriend for the first time at the rally.  Some long-time friends we had seen recently at the SEVROC rally in May in Maggie Valley, NC.  Other long-time friends we hadn’t seen since June 2009, when we attended the Wolfman’s Wandering Rally in Richmond, KY.  The parking lot conversation runs the gamut of political talk, tall tales, catching up on family events and the telling of riding adventures.

I purchased a leather vest earlier this year.  I remedied its virgin status, while in Eureka Springs, by adding a couple patches.

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This is the seamstress, who sewed on my patches.

Leather Vest - new patch

The first patch I purchased was the VROC patch.
I like that a pair of wings is in the vest design, as well as on the patch.

20151013_221550654_iOS
I purchased the VROC Reunion Rally patch too,
along with the 2015 Eureka Springs AR rocker.

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Around 5:00 pm, we assembled for the traditional group picture.

12140043_966007173422564_2315198082446660227_oKatie, of Ayers Open Road Photography, was the official photographer and did a great job.
Katie gave me permission to post this photograph.

 

After the group picture was finished, we headed over near the smokers, which had been running all day.  The smells coming from the smokers were tantalizing!

_LG18402 4x6Gathering for the BBQ

Before the BBQ, though, there was a special presentation to the young man in the “Tattoed and Employed” t-shirt.  Bradley had no idea what was about to happen, when I took the picture shown above.

The Eureka Springs Fire-Rescue-EMS made the presentation.

 

_LG18404 4x6Bradley and his dad, Jim, after the presentation

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Happy 21st birthday, Bradley!
I am sure that you will have many riding adventures on your new motorcycle!

 

After Bradley’s birthday gift presentation, we got in line for the BBQ.  The BBQ included ribs, brisket, sausage, macaroni and cheese, coleslaw — all of which were plentiful and tasty.

A raffle for prizes was held after the BBQ.  I won a Eureka Springs Fire-Rescue-EMS patch, and Bob won a VROC Reunion Rally t-shirt.  A 50/50 drawing was held as well.  Half of the money from the 50/50 benefited the Eureka Springs Fire-Rescue-EMS.

At the conclusion of the raffle, Condi and JR were recognized for their efforts in organizing this year’s rally, as well as their efforts in the past.

_LG18410 4x6Recognizing Condi and JR for their efforts in organizing rally

Condi and JR will not be able to organize the rally next year.  Another VROC member stepped up to the plate.

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Laura will organize next year’s VROC Reunion Rally.
In this photograph, Laura was pointing to “Moon”,
who has organized the rally in the past, stating that she had offered to help.

 

When we returned home from Arkansas, I was curious how many years the reunion rally has been held.  I messaged Dianna “Moon” and asked if she had any idea the year that the rally was first held.  Dianna dug through her t-shirts and found one that said 10th Annual VROC Reunion Sept 16-20, 2009.  The first rally, therefore, was held in 1999.  This year’s rally is the 16th annual VROC Reunion rally.   Dianna told me that the first rally was considered the first “International Rally” because there were several attendees from Canada, one or so from Mexico, and even one attendee from New Zealand. This was the first year that Bob and I attended the VROC Reunion rally.  We hope to attend the rally next year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

VROC Reunion Rally 2015: Beaver Town Bridge Ride

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 18; the post was published on October 13.]

Today is Day 8 of our 13-day vacation. We are in Eureka Springs, AR attending the annual Vulcan Riders and Owners Club (VROC) Reunion motorcycle rally.

Bob and I went for a short motorcycle sightseeing ride this morning.

Today’s route:

 

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We rode over Beaver Bridge.

_LG18375 4x6I read that this bridge is referred to as the “Little Golden Gate Bridge”.

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The Beaver Bridge is the only suspension bridge open to traffic in Arkansas.  The bridge carries Arkansas Highway 187 over the White River.  The Beaver Bridge was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.

We followed Arkansas Highway 187 to Beaver Lake.

_LG18378 4x6Beaver Lake

Beaver Lake is a man-made reservoir and is formed by a dam across the White River. Beaver Lake has over 450 miles of natural shoreline. We saw only a small part of Beaver Lake.

Very soon after taking the photograph of Beaver Lake shown above, we crossed over the Beaver Dam.

_LG18382 4x6Beaver Dam

We returned to our hotel, the Motel 62, in Eureka Springs around 11:00 am.  We spent rest of the day at the hotel.

VROC Reunion Rally 2015: Christ of the Ozarks

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 17; the post was published on October 12.]

This blog post continues Day 7 of our 13-day vacation. We are in Eureka Springs, AR attending the annual Vulcan Riders and Owners Club (VROC) Reunion motorcycle rally.

This afternoon Bob and I went sightseeing. Our first stop was at Thorncrown Chapel.  Our second stop was at the Crescent Hotel.  Our third stop was at the Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway Train Depot.  Our fourth and final stop was the Christ of the Ozarks memorial statue on the grounds of The Great Passion Play.

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Self-portrait of Bob and me with the Christ of the Ozarks in the background

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I obtained some interesting facts about the Christ of the Ozarks statue from its official website.

  • The foundation of the statue required 340 tons of concrete Interlaced with steel virtually welded into the rock of Magnetic Mountain.
  • The statue is made of 24 layers of white mortar on a steel frame.
  • It was necessary to build an elevator up the side of the framework, which was completely surrounded by scaffolding during construction.
  • The face is approximately 15 feet in height
  • The hands from wrist to fingertip measure approximately 7 feet.
  • The total weight of the statue is over two million pounds.
  • The arm spread from fingertip to fingertip is 65 feet.
  • The statue is located on Magnetic Mountain at an altitude of 1,500 feet.
  • The statue stands sixty-seven feet high.
  • The statue was sculpted by the late Emmet Sullivan, who was an apprentice to one of the sculptors of the Mount Rushmore monument.
  • The statue was completed and dedicated in 1966.

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We were amazed to see how large this statue really is when one is close to it!

VROC Reunion Rally 2015: Eureka Springs Train Depot

[Please note that this blog post is backdated to September 17; the post was published on October 11.]

This blog post continues Day 7 of our 13-day vacation. We are in Eureka Springs, AR attending the annual Vulcan Riders and Owners Club (VROC) Reunion motorcycle rally.

 

This afternoon Bob and I went sightseeing. Our first stop was at Thorncrown Chapel.  Our second stop was at the Crescent Hotel.  Our third stop was at the historic Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway Train Depot.

_LG18363 4x6the Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway Train Depot
Note the 0-4-0 narrow-guard (24-inch) steam locomotive, used to advertise the railway.
The locomotive was built in Berlin, Germany in 1934.

The Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway is a for-profit passenger tourist railway.  The railway offers excursion tours, a catered luncheon train and a catered dinner train. The train depot was closed, when we arrived.  Checking the train schedule, we determined that the last train departed at 12:30 pm.   We spent a few minutes checking out the train yard.

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We departed the train depot en route to our last sightseeing stop of the day — the Christ of the Ozarks (my blog post).

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