Sunday, August 14, 2016

56th Escapade

We moved on to Essex Junction, Vermont for the 56th Escapade.  We attended our first one in 2007 when we started our on the road adventure.  This is our fifth one but our first since 2011 in Gillette, WY. These rallies are always fun and informative with many seminars covering every aspect of RVing.  This time we were on staff and worked rather than attending the sessions.  
Part of the main stage display that Nanc helped set up.  Someone else made the trailer and she added her personal decorative touch. 
Lanny and Lois, whom we met at the 2008 Escapade.  All staff members worked to put together the welcome bags for the 1300+ attendees.
Bob and Molly are Class of  '07 mates who have been Escapade Directors for the last few years introducing Kay Peterson the founder of Escapees.  While Kay has cut back on her official duties, she is still going strong at 91.
Staff members came in early and where treated to a great dinner.  Here are '07 mates Mike, Sandy, Nora, Terry and Sandy.  One of the best things about the Escapade is seeing so many friends.
The Row has information about all the Escapees chapters and campgrounds. 
Opening ceremonies filled the room with the 1300+ attendees.
My favorite shirt.  Sure is true about us.
Staff members John, Monica and Sky.  We worked with Sky and were responsible for setting up, moving and tearing down the rooms where the eighty plus seminars where held.
There was entertainment each evening.  The first night was Jimmy Travis, a singer and comedian who had everyone in the place laughing.  Another evening was the Ham-o-Rama where SKPs had a chance to show their talent.  These are the Marlins, four brothers who played everything from country to blues, to a great piano pounding out Jerry Lee Lewis. 
Of course there was a marketplace with 50 vendors selling just about anything any RVer will ever need.  Since we had many miles and ten years of towing on our old one, I bought Nanc a new Blue Ox tow bar.
Even Santa was there passing out SKP hugs.  There is now a new branch of Escapees called Xcapers that is geared to families traveling with kids, so Santa was really busy.
The Class of '07 mates gathered for a happy hour social.  This group includes people who started fulltiming in '07 and many friends whom we have adopted.
This is the '07 group at our first Escapade in Goshen, IN in 2007.  Many of the original members are no longer on the road and a few have passed away.
Nanc with Sarah, who was helping her grandparents with morning coffee along with Jan and Bill who we just met this spring at Betty's.
We were happy to see Charlie whom we have crossed paths with several times.  His wife Sherri passed away and he had not been traveling for a while. He has since met Margaret and is once again on the road.  
What almost 700 rigs looks like at the Champlain Valley Expo.  It was the first time the Escapade has been in the Northeast and the turnout was great.  Opus is the rig with the white roof :-)
The day after the Escapade ended we had dinner with Michael McCormick, a former student who now lives in Burlington.  We have kept up with him through his father Bill who was our dentist but had not seen him since we went on the road.  We had a lot of catching up to do including hearing about his five week, 9,000 mile trip across America he, his brother Andrew and friend Patrick took a couple of years ago. 
He showed us around Burlington and we were treated to this beautiful sunset on Lake Champlain.  We had a great time in Vermont playing tourist and seeing friends and decided it is another place we would like to return to some day.


Doing It On the Road(Part II) said...

Nice post!

Jan Mains said...

It was so much fun, hope to see you two again some day when our paths cross.