The Beauty Around Us

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Posts tagged ‘SEVROC 2017’

SEVROC 2017

Our vacation in May was planned around the South East Vulcan Riders and Owners Club (SEVROC) motorcycle rally in Maggie Valley, NC.  The motorcycle rally was a 4-day event (May 18-21).  Our vacation began on Sunday, May 14.  We drove from Warren, PA to Front Royal, VA, where we spent the night.  On Monday, May 15, we drove from Front Royal, VA to Waynesboro, VA, via Skyline Drive.  We drove from Waynesboro, VA to Maggie Valley on Tuesday, May 16.  For the next 5 nights we were lodged at A Holiday Motel, which was home base for SEVROC 2017.

SEVROC is an annual event.  This year marked its 19th year.  Since 2006 the rally has been held in Maggie Valley.  Prior to 2006 the rally was held at two other south east locations: at Suches, GA for 2 years and at Lake Lure, NC for 5 years. (Thank you “Skid”, of Skid and Sandy on the Road, for information about rally locations prior to 2006.) From 2006 through 2013 the Applecover Inn in Maggie Valley served as home base for SEVROC, with innkeepers Derrick and Amy Cole catering to the club needs.  SEVROC 2014 had a change of venue due to Derrick and Amy not being at the Applecover Inn any longer.  Since 2014 A Holiday Motel has served as home base for SEVROC, with owners Gabi and Rob Edwards catering to the club needs.  This is our fourth SEVROC rally. Bob and I attended the rally previously in 2008, 2014, and 2015. This was the first year that we didn’t take the motorcycle to the motorcycle rally.  Our mode of transportation in the prior years was by motorcycle AND car.  I have never been able to ride long distances on the motorcycle, but I have been able to make the drive.  I was uncertain if I would be able to drive this year, as the arthritis in my right knee appears to have worsened in the past year or so.  Therefore, we opted to travel by car only.  Because VROC rallies are more about the PEOPLE than the bikes, it doesn’t really matter how you travel to a rally.  What is important is that you come to the rally!  Over the years I have come to think of a VROC rally as a family reunion.

_LG21743A Holiday Motel
SEVROC 2017 Rally Headquarters

An enjoyable part of the SEVROC rally is to meet new people and to get reacquainted with friends whom you have met at other rallies.  In between rallies we stay in touch with our friends via the VROC web forum and Facebook.

_LG21739“Boomer” and Mikey greet each other.

_LG21662“Jax” greets Hang and “Zeke”.

The rocking chairs in front of your room provided a good location, too, for meeting new people and getting reacquainted with old friends.

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We enjoyed a campfire each night of the rally.

_LG21781Campfire at A Holiday Motel

The SEVROC Meet & Greet was held at the Rendezvous Restaurant at the Maggie Valley Inn, located approximately 3 miles north of A Holiday Motel. The Meet & Greet began at 6:00 pm and was over around 7:00 pm. Dinner was served family style. We had tossed salad and rolls, fish, coleslaw, ham, fried chicken, green beans, mashed potatoes and gravy, and macaroni and cheese. For dessert we had Oreo chocolate pudding with whipped topping.  The food was good; the company was exceptional.

_LG21751Bob and I sat at this table.

“Willie Wonka”, Carlene, “Pappy” and Cheri sat opposite Bob and me.

_LG21750“Willie Wonka” and Carlene

_LG21761“Pappy” and Cheri

I took pictures of those at other tables as well.  I heard that our dinner party totaled 51 people.

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And just as I was ready to return to my table, “Judge” and Cindy arrive at the Meet & Greet.

_LG21756In the center, “Judge” and Cindy

After dinner, back at A Holiday Motel, “Southern Draw” and Carolyn’s son, their daughter-in-law and granddaughter entertained us with music.

_LG21785“Southern Draw” and Carolyn’s son and daughter-in-law
Somebody’s Child

 

SEVROC 2017 wrapped up the evening of Saturday, May 20, with a raffle and 50/50 drawing.

_LG21855Gathering for Saturday’s Raffle and 50/50 Drawing

Riders of Kawasaki (ROK) sent “Jax”, the organizer of the SEVROC motorcycle rally, a number of prizes to be drawn for.  ROK also sent Kawaski-branded merchandise to be handed out to rally attendees.

_LG21850Thank you, ROK, for the Kawasaki-branded lanyards, water bottles and travel mugs!

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The raffle begins, with the first ticket drawn.

The raffle resulted in 12 merchandise winners.
Bob was one of the twelve winners.  He won 6 quarts of oil.

Next up was to draw the ticket for the money.  The winner would receive 50% of the proceeds.  The balance would go to the local police department K9 unit.

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The winning ticket for the 50/50 was drawn by one of the K9 officers.

“Blondy” won the 50/50 drawing.

_LG21884“Blondy” with “Jax”, Mikey and the local K9 officer

The total amount of money collected for the 50/50 drawing was $696.00.  Therefore, “Blondy” won $348.00, and the local K9 unit received $348.00.  “Blondy” handed over her entire winnings to the local K9 officer.  The giving didn’t stop there.  Individual rally attendees came forward and contributed more money to the K9 program. When the money was tallied up, we had contributed $1,200.00 to the K9 program!

_LG21890“Jax”, Mikey, the two K9 officers and one of their two dogs

The next order of business was the presentation of a quilt to “Jax”, in recognition of all the years that he has organized the SEVROC rally.

_LG21899Presentation of Quilt to “Jax”

The quilt was made of SEVROC shirts from 15 different rallies.  The shirts were donated by various members.  Mikey’s wife, Linda, was responsible for the quilt’s preparation.  She and Mikey had each of us come secretively to their room and autograph the back of the quilt.  What a wonderful gift for “Jax”!

After the quilt presentation, the K9 officers showed their dogs.  One of the K9 officers showed us what last year’s SEVROC contribution to the K9 program purchased for the K9 unit.  The black box and yellow ball in the picture displayed below is used in training K9 drug sniffing dogs.

_LG21906K9 officer explaining use of black box and yellow ball in training of K9 drug sniffing dogs

What a wonderful time we had with our VROC “family”.

_LG21916I love each and every one of them and look forward to the next time we meet in person!

 

Maggie Valley, NC to Townsend, TN and Back

We spent the week of May 14th on vacation in Virginia and North Carolina. I have been uploading blog posts about our vacation since May 29th. This blog post is about our fifth day of vacation.

I awakened at 6:15 am on Thursday, May 18, and was showered and dressed for the day by 6:50 am.

At 7:30 am we went to breakfast at Pop’s Grits & Eggs, which is located next door to A Holiday Motel.  This was our second breakfast at Pop’s in as many days. As we entered the restaurant two of our VROC friends, Lonnie and Rick,  saw Bob and me and invited us to join them at their table. Bob and I ordered Western Omelets for breakfast. The food and conversation was great. As we were leaving the restaurant three more VROC friends — Jim, Tim and Paul, came in for breakfast. We chatted briefly, before exiting the restaurant.

Bob and I made plans the previous night to join “Skid” in a group ride.

XZ180982“Skid”, at A Holiday Motel, preparing for the group ride

We departed A Holiday Motel around 9:30 am en route Townsend TN.  The ride that we left on is referred to as “the Townsend Loop”.  The Townsend Loop ride originates in Maggie Valley NC and travels via Newfound Gap Road (U.S. Route 441), Old TN-73 and Lamar Alexander Parkway to Townsend.  Townsend is a lunch stop.  Then the ride continues to (and on) the Tail of the Dragon and back to Maggie Valley.  When we attended SEVROC in 2015, Bob and I went on this ride.  More than 20 people participated in the ride in 2015.  This year our group ride consisted of only five people: “Skid” and Sandy, “Bass Man”, and Bob and I.  “Skid” and “Bass Man” rode their motorcycles, with “Skid” in the lead.  Sandy rode in the car with Bob and me.  I drove; Bob sat in the backseat.

Our first stop was at Newfound Gap, on the North Carolina-Tennessee border.

_LG21609Newfound Gap is a mountain pass located near the center of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Situated along the border of Tennessee and North Carolina, the state line crosses the gap.

_LG21610Rockefeller Memorial at Newfound Gap

_LG21606Taking in the scenic view from Newfound Gap

_LG21605What a gorgeous view from Newfound Gap!

_LG21612Our Townsend Loop group, minus one — Me!

Our second stop was at Smokin’ Joe’s Bar-B-Que in Townsend TN.  We arrived at the restaurant shortly before noon.  The restaurant wasn’t busy.  We were seated immediately and lunch orders taken.  I remembered how good the hush puppies were from lunch 2 years ago, so we asked for a large order of hush puppies.  Bob ordered a salad with some kind of meat BBQ.  I ordered a pulled pork sandwich.  Our main lunch entrees were OK; the hush puppies were just as good as I remembered them.

After lunch Bob, Sandy and I parted ways with “Skid” and “Bass Man”. The motorcyclists left to ride The Tail of the Dragon, before returning to Maggie Valley. Bob, Sandy and I went to Gatlinburg and then returned to Maggie Valley via U.S. Route 441.  If we had spotted somewhere to park in Gatlinburg, we would have stopped and walked around a bit.  We didn’t see any parking, so we didn’t stop.  As we drove through the city, we did see some damage from the November 2016 wildfires.  We saw more fire damage from U.S. Route 441.

_LG21613Fire Damage from November 2016 Wildfires
U.S. Route 441 (TN)

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Fire Damage from November 2016 Wildfires
This is the same stop as above, but a close-up of the mountain on the right is shown.

LJG21616Sandy and I at Chimney Tops Overlook
U.S. Route 441 (TN)

According to the Nashville Public Radio website article , the November 2016 wildfires started November 23 in the Chimney Tops area and turned deadly five days later.  Fourteen people were killed; more than 175 people were injured; and at least 2,400 structures were damaged.  Two juveniles were charged with aggravated arson in connection with the wildfires.

We made one additional stop before returning to Maggie Valley.  Less than 1/2 mile south of Newfound Gap, we turned off U.S. Route 441 onto Clingmans Dome Road.  We followed Clingmans Dome Road to a parking lot.

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Information Sign about Clingmans Dome

We were not willing to climb the steep half-mile walk to the observation tower shown on the informational sign.  I did take a picture, though, that looked like Bob and Sandy were on their way up the trail to the observation tower.  I took this photograph to tease “Skid”, to let him think that Sandy climbed that trail.  “Skid” wasn’t fooled.

_LG21621Bob and Sandy on the trail leading to Clingmans Dome

We didn’t have to climb that steep trail, though, to enjoy scenic vistas.

_LG21617View from Clingmans Dome Parking Lot

_LG21618View from Clingmans Dome Parking Lot

_LG21622View from Clingmans Dome Parking Lot

Bob, Sandy and I made it back to A Holiday Motel (home base for the Southeast Vulcan Riders and Owners (SEVROC) motorcycle rally) shortly after “Skid” and “Bass Man” made it back from their ride on the Tail of the Dragon.

Rather than go out, Bob and I ate leftovers for dinner.  Later in the evening we socialized with our VROC friends, before calling it a night.  I called it a night much sooner than Bob did!

 

Waynesboro, VA to Maggie Valley, NC

We spent the week of May 14th on vacation in Virginia and North Carolina. Earlier this week I uploaded blog posts about the first two days of our vacation. This blog post is about our third day of vacation.

We checked out of Best Western Waynesboro on Tuesday, May 16, at 7:00 am, after a complimentary breakfast at the hotel.

We logged most of our miles driving south on Interstate 81.

IMG_20170516_080511Bob took this picture of me, driving.
I was at the wheel for about 20 minutes from Warren PA to Maggie Valley NC; Bob drove rest of the time.

Around 11:00 am we ate a picnic lunch at the Tennessee Welcome Center along Interstate 81 (Bristol, TN).

IMG_20170516_111000Tennessee Welcome Center
Bristol, TN
(photo by Bob)

We stopped briefly at Metcalf Overlook, shortly before the North Carolina border.

_LG21490Metcalf Overlook

_LG21491Metcalf Overlook

I think that the overlook on the opposite side of Interstate 26 would provide more interesting photo opportunities.  I will have to remember my thoughts the next time we pass through this area.

20170516_165525231_iOSInterstate 26 near Mars Hill, NC
We were within 50 miles of Maggie Valley, when I took this picture.
Those mountains call my name!

We arrived at A Holiday Motel in Maggie Valley NC around 2:15 pm.  We checked in and unpacked. A Holiday Motel, where we would spend the next 5 nights, is home base for the Southeast Vulcan Riders and Owners (SEVROC) motorcycle rally.  The rally’s official start was not until Thursday, but rally attendees began arriving on Monday.  SEVROC is an annual event. This year marked its 19th year. This is our fourth SEVROC rally. We attended the rally previously in 2008, 2014, and 2015. Our mode of transportation in those years was by motorcycle AND car.  I have never been able to ride long distances on the motorcycle, but I have been able to make the drive.  I was uncertain if I would be able to drive this year, as the arthritis in my right knee appears to have worsened in the past year or so.  Therefore, we opted to travel by car only.  VROC rallies are more about the PEOPLE than the bikes, so it doesn’t really matter how you travel to a rally.  What is important is that you come to the rally!  Over the years I have come to think of a VROC rally as a family reunion.

We spent our 5-night stay in Room 4, the room right next to the office on the left. In 2014 and 2015 we stayed in room 5, which is located next to the office on the right. In 2008 the rally was held at another hotel in Maggie Valley.  Room 4 is furnished with two full size beds separated by a nightstand, which occupy three walls. A mini refrigerator, topped with a microwave and coffeemaker, and a two drawer dresser topped with a small flat screen TV occupy the fourth wall. The fourth wall contains the door to the bathroom and a small closet. It is a small, but comfortable and clean room.

We didn’t see any of our VROC friends, when we first arrived at A Holiday Motel. I would say within an hour of our arrival, though, “Skid” and Sandy rode in. “Skid” and Sandy arrived at A Holiday Motel on Monday afternoon and had been out for a ride and ice cream at Dairy Queen. While chatting with “Skid” and Sandy, “Bass Man” rode in.

At 5:30 pm we left for dinner. We ate dinner at Sagebrush Steakhouse in Waynesville with “Skid” and Sandy and “Bass Man”. “Skid” and Sandy accompanied us in the car. “Bass Man” followed on his motorcycle. Sandy ordered a half size Harvest Salad. “Skid” ordered Rodeo Chicken. Bob ordered Tenderloin Tips, sauteed with peppers & onions and mushrooms.  I forget what “Bass Man” ordered for dinner.  I ordered a Turkey Cheddar Melt with bacon and tomato, served on toasted Wheat Berry bread. Sandy and I each ordered a blackberry cobbler with ice cream for dessert. The cobbler cost only $3.99 and was huge. I shared my cobbler with Bob. Sandy didn’t share her cobbler, and she wasn’t able to finish it. The food was excellent and reasonably priced. Service, however, was slow especially when waiting for the bill.  It was around 8:00 pm, when we returned to A Holiday Motel.

“Wrong Turn” and “KT” arrived this evening. We chatted with “Wrong Turn”, “KT” and Sandy, before retiring at 10:00 pm for the night.

Our friend “Skid” wrote a blog post about this day as well.  Please click here to read his account of the day.  Some of the photographs that “Skid” shared in his post include pictures of Bob and me.

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