Monday, April 26, 2010

President's Message

Greetings Dogwooders

It wasn't my idea to include the photo at the right. No, it's not me riding the motorcycle, no it's not Spanky on the back; he's our cat. Look at the reflection in the helmet. That's Shamu, our motorhome. This is the scene we saw earlier this year as we were heading north through South Carolina.

Carolyn, Spanky and I are just now getting home from ten days of motor homing fun. We spent the weekend of April 16 – 18 at the Dixie Fair Grounds in Winston-Salem, NC at the planning session for GEAR 2010. It will be held October 20 -24 in Winston-Salem so be sure to mark these dates on your calendar. My plan is for Dogwood to win the bean bag baseball event this year so be prepared for tryouts and practice at Dogwood rallies between now and then. There will be lots more GEAR info in the future so stay tuned.

Following the GEAR planning session, we enjoyed a couple of days at Thousand Trails Forest Lake where we visited the Richard Childress Racing Museum and did some geocaching. From there, we went to Virginia International Raceway for the Dogwood rally hosted by the Gruels and Martins. The food was outstanding, the racing was excellent and as usual, there was an abundance of Dogwood camaraderie and did I mention, the food was excellent. VIR turned out to be a good location for a rally so plan to rally with Dogwood at this same location at the Virginia Historic Races June 4 – 6. There’s more info on this elsewhere in eNews.

Once again, it’s time to start thinking about elections of Dogwood Officers. Your nominating committee (Jim Buelow, Nancy Cummings, and Carol Warthan) will soon be starting its work to select candidates willing to serve the chapter in the positions of President, Vice President Membership, Vice President Rallies, Vice President Communications, Secretary, Treasurer, National Director and Alternate National Director. The nominating committee will also nominate three members for the next term of the nominating committee. If you have an interest in serving in any of these positions, throw your name in the hat by making your wishes known to any member of the Dogwood nominating committee.

Carolyn and I will be hosting Dogwood's next rally June 4-6 at VIR. We’d love to have a huge turnout. Mark the dates on your calendar and make your reservations. We look forward to seeing ya’ll there if not before.

June Rally at VIR for Historic Races

Take a step back in time and watch cars from the 50s, 60s and 70s race on the tracks at VIR.

Join us June 4-6 for a Dogwood rally at the Virginia International Raceway in conjunction with the running of the Historic races. VIR is located between South Boston and Danville.

Camping: We will dry camp on the grassy infield along the track. There are no designated "sites" and the place fills up quickly on a first come first serve basis. The cost is $50 to dry camp for the weekend (Friday - Sunday).

Races: Various car races are run during the day on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Everyone will need a ticket for the race each day you are there since we are camping within the actual raceway. You can set up your lawn chair along the track to view a race. A 3 day ticket to the races is $30 to $40 per person depending on how you purchase your tickets. For those that have golf carts, bikes, four wheelers, etc, this may be a good place to use them. The track is over 3 miles around and part of the fun is seeing the activities from various vantage points.

Rally Fees: The cost of the rally is $20 per person (or $40 per coach with 2 people) and includes the following meals: Friday and Saturday dinners and happy hour snacks, Saturday and Sunday breakfast.

To Register for the Rally:
1. Mail a check for your rally fees, payable to Carolyn Duff, to Carolyn at 2351 Castlestone Road Midlothian, VA 23113. Please register by May 16.

2. Purchase your race tickets directly from VIR using one of these purchase methods: (1) purchase via the internet and print our own tickets (go to , scroll down to June 4-6, Heacock Classic Gold Cup Historic Races) or (2) call the racetrack at 434-822-7700 ext 116 or ext 300 and they will mail your tickets or (3) purchase tickets at the gate. The costs vary slightly depending upon method of purchase. Mention promo code GCMCC10 for a $10 discount. Refer to update below.
3. Purchase your camping pass at the gate when you arrive. Or refer to update below for discount.

More information will be provided closer to the rally. Contact Mann or Carolyn Duff if you have any questions.
5/11: Mann has arranged for a group discount. Call Crista Walker (VIR) 434-822-7700 x116 and tell her you are with the Dogwood group, promo code GCMCC10. The weekend race pass is $20.00 ($10 discount) and the weekend camping pass is $45.00 ($5 discount).
The gate opens at 7 am Friday and the promo code expires 6/2/10. Mann asked if we could arrive on Thursday and the current answer is no because of insurance requirements for security.
Attendees: Duff, Fisher, Schoolar, Greenwood, Dyke, Buelow?

Other 2010 Dogwood Rallies

Mark your calendars for these upcoming Dogwood rallies. More information will be provided closer to the rally date.

August 6-8 : Rockahock Campground in Lanexa VA. Located on the Chickahominy River between Williamsburg and Richmond, the campground has full hookup sites and a pavilion for our group gatherings. Hosts: Dyke, Davis.
Rockahock web site

September 17-19: Country Waye RV Resort in Luray VA. Head to the mountains and kick off the fall season in scenic Luray. The campground has spacious sites with full hookups and a yurt for our group gatherings. Hosts: Fairleigh & Cil Schoolar, Butch & Liz Jones.
Country Waye web site

October 20 -24: GEAR in Winston-Salem NC. There will be a Dogwood happy hour one evening during the rally.

November 5-6: Urbanna Oyster Festival. The Ed Fisher Garage and RV Resort. Hosts: Berkley & Karen Alexander

December 3-5: Holiday Trav-L-Park Campground in Virginia Beach VA. We still need hosts for this rally. Please consider volunteering. 2-3 couples are needed to host this event.

Highlights from VIR - Rolex Races Rally

Nine coaches attended the rally at Virginia International Raceway for the Rolex races. Hosts for the rally were Donna & Carl Gruel and Shirley & Mo Martin. We kicked off the weekend with dinner together at the Oak Tree Tavern located on the raceway complex. Throughout the rest of the weekend our hosts provided delicious meals featuring brats, French toast and beef tenderloin.

Below you can see some of the racing highlights from the GRAND-AM Rolex Series race at VIR on Saturday. This was one of many races run throughout the weekend.

Our campsite was in the infield and in close proximity to the paddock where work to prepare cars for racing moved at a frantic pace. Those who are fascinated with cars had fun walking through the paddock, viewing the activity in the garages, admiring the haulers and marveling at the $$$$ flowing through the activities in the pits. Even those who weren't all that interested in the racing found pleasure from the enjoyment of those who did. Mother Nature watched out for us and we enjoyed good weather for all of the weekends activities. Photo's of some of the weekends' activities are included are included here.

Special thanks go out to our hosts for a great rally.


GEAR (rally for the Eastern Area of FMCA) will be held in Winston-Salem North Carolina October 20-24.

Dogwood has several members (Greenwoods, Hicks and Alexanders) who are serving as committee chairmen. Max needs volunteers to drive the trams which are 6 person golf carts. You will drive 2-3 hour shifts throughout the event with the number of shifts you are assigned being dependent upon the number of volunteer drivers. Berkley and Karen need volunteers to monitor seminars.

Volunteers can arrive as early as Monday (normal arrival is Tuesday and Wednesday). If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Max or Berkley. A chairman must submit your name as a volunteer in order for you to receive your volunteer credentials which are required for early entry (there is no place to note that you are a volunteer when you register).

Treasurer and Audit Reports

Barbara Dyke has submitted the December 2009 - March 2010 treasurer's report. Click here to review her report.

During the April rally, an audit of the financial records was completed. Below is the report submitted by the audit committee.

Audit of Dogwood Financial Records

Mr President: The audit committee met on April 24th 2010 to review the Treasurer's (Barbara Dykes) Books. The Audit Committee consisted of Liz Jones, Cil Schoolar and Mo Martin. The audit was completed and the results showed that the books were accurate, clean and complete.

Mo Martin

Member Concerns

Former Dogwood member Tony Winn passed away on April 23. Click here to view his obituary. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Amelia whose address is 8312 Quailfield Road Mechanicsville VA 23116.

Several Dogwood members have had surgery or been under the weather in the past few months: Susan Buelow, Sheryl Wayman, Rachel Ferebee, Connie Tillman, Max Hicks (and there are probably others who I don't know about). We wish everyone a speedy recovery and hope you are feeling better soon.

Membership: Dogwood currently has 61 members (53 whom have paid their 2010 dues).

We have one new member. Welcome Dennis & Joyce Reid of Mechanicsville.

Nick & Elizabeth De Monte and Tom & Ann Ottum are not renewing their Dogwood memberships. We wish them the best.

Recipes for French Toast Casseroles

Donna Gruel provided these recipes for her delicious French Toast casseroles that were served at the VIR rally.

Company French Toast

1/2 cup margarine
1 cup brown sugar
12 slices bread
5 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups milk

Melt margarine. Combine sugar and cinnamon. Arrange 6 slices of bread on top of 1/2 of melted margarine in a 13 x 9 pan. Sprinkle bread with 1/2 the sugar mixture. Top with remaining 6 slices of bread, drizzle with rest of margarine. Sprinkle with remaining sugar mixture.

Combine eggs and milk. Pour over the bread. Cover and chill overnight.

Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes.

Serve with syrup like regular French toast.

Sausage Stuffed French Toast

4 eggs
3 cups milk
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 package sausage Aidels Smoked Chicken apple, chopped
4 cups apple peeled, cored and sliced
3 tablespoons butter
3 cups apple cider
pinch ground cloves
12 slices of bread - French or egg is good

Preheat oven to 350

Whisk together eggs, milk, nutmeg and cinnamon in a large bowl.

Cover bottom of large baking dish with 6 slices of bread, cover with sausage then cover the sausage with the remaining 6 slices of bread.

Pour the egg mixture over bread layers. Let stand 15 minutes (or overnight).

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes until golden and puffed.

In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add apples and saute until slightly soft, about 3 minutes. Add cider and cloves, boil for 5 minutes over high heat until apples and cider form a syrup.

Cut the baked French toast and serve with spoonfuls of apples and syrup.