MO: Ozark Winnies
The 2021 Grand National Rally, with a Road Trip To Hawaii theme, opened on Monday, July 26. For the Murphy’s the rally started July 9 when they arrived to help prepare the grounds and organize volunteers. Thank you, David and Joy, for your WIT Club support. Many Missouri attendees volunteered their time to help make GNR a pleasant experience for all, serving in various capacities, people mover, traffic control and other duties throughout the rally. A big ‘Thank You’ to those volunteers. Also, a big “Thank You” to everyone who helped with the head of row decorations, with arranging tables for the many meals and other head of row activities, etc. Without the generosity of your time the rally would not be possible. If you have never done it or haven’t for a while, think about volunteering next year.
This year the Missouri row was in Section A. All 50A hookups. Yeah! There were approximately six hundred units attending this year. Someone at WIT must have looked at the weather forecast, as this year’s check-in gifts were an insulated bag and a cooling towel. The number of coaches associated with Missouri was twenty-six, with sixteen of those being Ozark Winnies members. Attending were Anderson, Biller, both Collings & Jim Rumbo, Eaheart, Heckart, Johnson, Kelling, Mar-low, Mulvihill, Murphy, Spene, Taylor, Wallis, Wollin and new members Deb Taylor/Lori Kofron. We welcome you to our merry band of Ozark Winnie campers. Five units arrived on Wednesday, July 21 when the rally grounds were opened. That evening the group had dinner at Shooter’z. On Thursday three more units arrived. That evening most of the group went to Mitchell’s Bar & Grill in Leland for dinner. What would we do without Judy Eaheart? She prepared a Friday night meal of pulled pork, potato salad, cole slaw and corn for everyone. Thank you Judy, doesn’t even come close, but Thank You, Judy.
On the Saturday before the rally starts, the Forest City Puckerbrush Parade is held. There was lots of attendance from our group. Lots of candy and lots of laughter. It seems the floats and other parade participants are appreciated, but the main attraction appears to be the candy and sponges that are thrown out. President David participated by driving 2022 Forza in the parade; a more stressful job than he realized, trying avoid running over all of the old people hobbling into the street going after candy and sponges. By Saturday evening the attendance was up to thirty-eight. The evening meal was hamburgers and hotdogs provided by Winnie-MO-Tasca. Everyone attending brought a dish to pass. Saturday ends with a big fireworks display in Pammel Park that are visible from the rally grounds. That is if the mosquitos don’t carry you off, although it was reported that they weren’t that bad this year. Sunday started with the Police benefit breakfast. Then the head of row tent decorating started. By the end of the day forty-two attendees in twenty-six coaches were on the rally grounds. For the Winnie-MO-Tasca provided evening meal, the majority wanted pizza from Shooter’z instead of Subway’s. That evening WIT had a light opening ceremony, with the flag raising and welcome speeches from the former Reps and Denise Hagen.
Seminars and Friendship Hall, filled with a lot more vendors with more RV related products, opened on Monday. That evening Winnie-MO-Tasca provided ice cream and all the toppings. The big opening ceremony was presented and the first night of entertainment was a country band, the Larry Fleet Band. Joy was so thrilled that she toughed it out for four whole songs. Way to go Joy! For you newer members that don’t know Joy that well, country ain’t her preferred genre of music. On Tuesday morning everyone, led by King Haleakala Mamalahoa Hualalai (President David), was gathered at the head of the row dressed in their Hawaiian shirts and moo-moos, waiting on the judges to pick us as a winner for the second year in a row. For Row Party Night we served Italian Ice sticks. The entertainment for tonight was another country band, the Chris Koza Band. Wednesday was the hottest day of the rally with a temperature in the high 90’s and a heat index exceeding 100 degrees. The morning started with the sixteenth annual breakfast of pancakes, sausage and scrambled eggs. This has become one of the more popular GNR events. Business meetings followed breakfast. The big highlight of the Winnie-MO-Tasca meeting was the election of 2022 officers: Bill Walworth, President, Chip Wallis, Vice-President, Vickie Day, Secretary and Nancy Collins, Treasurer. A big Thank You for volunteering to serve your state club.
The Winnebago provided a luau meal of pulled pork, chick-en, rice, beans, tropical fruit, rolls and cookies. But no poi. What? A luau meal with no poi? WIT, what were you thinking? The head of row decorating winners were also announced. Everyone who visited the Missouri row on row party night raved about the decorations. When the winner was announced Missouri was so disappointed. Texas was chosen to be the winner. On Wednesday evening the entertainment was Polynesian Revue featuring Hot Lava with Elvis and Don Ho. It was a very entertaining evening. Thursday found twenty-two rally goers on the road to Austin, MN to visit the Spam Museum. Even if you don’t care for Spam this is a very informative museum. The history of this product was even more meaningful for those of us who were raised on Spam. On Thursday evening twenty-seven boarded the Lady of the Lake for a cool, relaxing evening cruise on Clear Lake. Nine of those that had not headed south, or in other direc-tions by Friday evening, retuned to Mitchell’s bar & Grill for dinner and spent one more night on the hallowed rally grounds of Winnebago. George Biller provided some evening entertainment with his golden voice and magic fingers. A new entertainment act for GNR 2022? A few of the pictures taken during the week are included our newsletter, but there were many, many more taken. Check those out on the Winnie-MO-Tasca and Ozark Winnies Facebook pages. Contact President Joy if you wish to join these groups.