It happened at Little Farm on the River in Rising Sun, Indiana, and our guests were “pot-luck” – Rpods, Airstreams, Vista Cruiser, Scotty, and a host of other camper varieties – all friends of Johanna (aka Tink) and Ella.
Perched on the cliff of the Ohio River, Tink and I set up camp early in the week (Monday, April 21) and had one night of intense sister-bonding. Tink’s RPOD was at the factory for a spa treatment, and she spent Monday night with me in the Silvermine.
With us were Charlie Button and Tink’s new little (first-time) camping buddy, Belle – as in Tink ‘N Belle!
On Tuesday morning a rental camper was pulled into Tink’s camping space next to me, and this 30-foot, 70’s-style trailer (nicknamed The Big Nasty) became our command center for the week.
From our campsites the view took in the Ohio river, barges on the river, flowering trees in the lower part of the campground, and the lush hillside to our north.
Our camping framily (friends and family) started arriving on Tuesday with Steve and Cindy first to land.
Next to arrive was DH Tom in his new MGB. Still teaching, he has to drive down separately after his work week is over. I don't think he minds the drive!
Pat and Jennifer drove in from Indianapolis -- another couple that we have not camped with in a long time. Everywhere they camp, Pat and Jennifer give credence to the old statement "What's new is old again" . . . or is that "What's old is new again?" Whatever -- it is true of their new/retro Scotty camper!
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday our family trickled in for a grand total of 17 campers: 1 Big Nasty, 2 Airstreams, 6 RPods, 2 TABs, 1 retro Scotty, 1 Vista Cruiser, 1 Salem, 1 Flagstaff, 1 Fireside, and a Surveyor. Many of the rallies that Tink and I attend are trailer-specific -- our rally was truly POT-LUCK!
Thursday evening, with about 2/3 of our Framily in residence, Johanna and I hosted a happy hour complete with drinks and heavy eats. This was the official start of the rally although it had already been running for 3 days for Johanna and me!
Friday morning our group (comprised of Lou, Larry, Alan, and Sheila with Ella driving the van – and Tom and Tink in the MG) headed East on route 56/156 following the Ohio River as it wandered through little towns of Rising Sun and Patriot on the way to Vevay, the county seat of Switzerland County. Tom always likes to do a walk-through of a county courthouse, and this one was open for business on Friday afternoon.
But, it was the outside, blooming with fresh spring gardens and unique out-buildings, that furnished us a memorable sight-seeing experience.
I got 'em all --- all except for Sheila! How could I forget Sheila, the owner of TABARBIE? I'll have to find a previous picture of Shiela to share!
Home for four days, and then Columbus, OH and the "Share the Dream" rally hosted by Haydocy Airstream RV and NOVA. It will not be pot-luck. It will be 100% shiny silver Airstreams!
This is our third year attending and blogging the TAC Amish Rally, and I am wondering what I am going to write that is different? After all, it was held at the same Wayne County Fairgrounds, attended by basically the same “Silver Family” friends, and was conducted the same first weekend in April. The country-side driving tour of the Amish hot spots was identical, and we knew well the routine of pot-luck dinner, silent raffle, and white elephant gift exchange that would entertain us on Saturday. Nothing was very different!
And that is when it dawned on me that it had the same familiar comfort of . . . . coming home! It just doesn’t get better than towing your home behind you and arriving at a destination with your camping family ready to greet you. Maybe that explains why we love rallying so much.
Also the same was the fact that early April is quite capable of cold and rain. It had rained for the early-bird Thursday arrivals, and much of the day Friday. It was not raining as we arrived Friday at 6:15, and it didn’t rain the rest of our time there! Our hostess Lauren directed us to a cement slab that was high and dry with a 50 amp electric hook-up, and a nice small pile of horse manure for fresh fairgrounds aromatherapy! Within 20 minutes we were joining the fun in the heated fairgrounds building that the rally was assigned for the weekend.
Saturday began early with our van filled with those eager to visit the town of Charm where the Keim Lumber Company sells exotic woods and the hardware store caters to the Amish in the area. From the looks of the parking lot, business was brisk on this Saturday morning!
Inside our little group split up to browse the beauty of the store and to gawk at the different stuffs.
Our plan was to meet back in the middle of the lobby in a couple hours. Tom and I headed straight for the exotic woods aisles where beautiful boards, planks, timbers, beams, slats, and logs were on display – with some very pricy price-tags.
This 513 year old tree ring was marked with historical events from 1492 in the center, to 1642, the outer-most ring.
Aside from lumber and hardware-type-stuff (tools, electrical and plumbing supplies) there was also a nice variety of home trinkets and nick-knacks. Tom bought a new mailbox, and I guess that will serve as our token souvenir to Keims Hardware store!
The menfolk (Tom, Terry & Larry) couldn’t get enough of the wood and tools, so the goodwives (Sue, Ella & Lou) encouraged them to continue looking all they wanted while we checked out the fabric store and quilt store down the road.
Leaving the quilt shop we saw a young Amish woman driving a paint pony in a small open cart! There was something very un-Amish-looking about her with her classy little pony and stripped down little cart.
Our ride through the Amish countryside was picturesque with fine-looking Amish farms. We only saw one farmer out with horses and plow preparing for planting – evidence again of a late spring.
Back in Wooster we made a stop at the Everything Rubbermaid store, a Hungarian Pastry Shop, and a Kitchen boutique, and admired the Wayne County Courthouse. Then, back to the Fairgrounds.
The traditional pot-luck began the evening with a food-spread sheltered in our private, heated, fairgrounds building, complete with kitchen, dining, and lounging facilities. The food spread was a smorgasbord -- take a peek at happy diners!
That brought us down to the silent raffle -- Loren’s distinctive way to raise money (and avoid a rally fee) to pay for the weekend’s many niceties -- and the white elephant exchange with some rather brutal gift-stealing!
We don’t go camping any more . . . we go ‘streamin’ ! The “SIlvermine and His” is our 2016 23' Airstream, and ‘streamin’ is the name we use to describe our adventures. Stream along as we document everything from weekend trips to longer summer excursions and full-blown vacations. You know what they say: if you’re not in an Airstream – you’re just camping!
Tom & Ella Brown