Friday, January 18, 2013

President's Message

To All Members of the Dogwood Chapter of FMCA,

My wife, Liz and I have only been members of the Dogwood Chapter of FMCA for a few years. And during that time we have met many great people. Ever since our first rally we knew that this was a group of people with which we would develop lasting relationships.

The Christmas Rally held at the KOA in Williamsburg (Va.) was a rousing success. The food was delicious, as usual, and the shopping was intense. We recruited 3 new member families which is always a plus.

As your newly elected President I would like to encourage you to attend as many of our rallies as you can because if you don’t several things happen. First, you will be missing some great fellowship and wonderful times. Second, Liz and I have not met all of our members and this is the best way for us to get to know you. And lastly, our organization needs your support, more than just your dues. We want as many of our members as possible to participate in our rallies.

I am excited as we enter 2013 and hope that you are as well. We have a very enthusiastic board and they are ready to get started. Your new Vice President of Rallies is Dennis Reid. He has already mapped out some very interesting sites for 2013. Carolyn Duff will continue to serve as your Vice President of Communications. Carolyn is working on some upgrades to our communications system. Pat Allen has taken on the tasks of Treasurer and Vice President of Membership. She is already making plans for the chapter table at GEAR in the fall. Ed Fisher will also continue to serve as your FMCA Director.

I will be seeking volunteers for the Audit Committee. If you would like to be of help to the chapter in that capacity, please let me know.

This year we will focus on increasing the participation of the membership and offering more of what the membership desires in rallies.  You will be getting a simple questionnaire in the next newsletter. This will address some questions that the Board has and allow your input as to the direction in which the chapter needs to move. Please take a few moments to complete it as honestly as you can. We need your input and support.

We will continue to use our Vice President of Communications, as the means to contact the membership. This will allow the chapter to maintain some control of what is sent in the name of the Dogwood Chapter.  If you have any communications that need to go to chapter members, please go thru the VP of Communications. Rally hosts are requested to contact Carolyn if you have any information to disseminate to the membership.

If there is anything that myself or the board can do to enhance your Dogwood experience, please contact us. We want Dogwood to be the best and strongest chapter in FMCA.  
Happy Trails,
O.M. Butch Jones
Dogwood President 2013-14                  

Message from the VP of Rallies

I am pleased to announce that the 2013 rally schedule is now complete.  I have to take my hat off to previous VP's of rallies.  It is a very arduous process and I have a lot to learn. 

In the process, I tried to block off rally facilities with meeting space before they were reserved by other clubs.  I also tried to insure that rallies did not coincide with other events and holidays.  The only exception is the FMCA national rally since only 2 coaches are attending.  Also, if you click on the hyper link by each campground you will find information pertaining to that rally. 

Since Solomons Island was so popular in 2012, I have asked Richard Bonewitz to try to make reservations for 2014.  He has assured me that he was up to the task.  Because of scheduling conflicts, I was unable to schedule the new campground in Roanoke Rapids that was suggested by the Buelows.  Since it looks like a great facility, I would like to re-schedule for 2014.

I would like to bring to your attention 2 new venues for 2013.

  1. Cool Breeze CG near Galax, VA - I found this quaint campground that is a favorite of bluegrass music lovers and other RV clubs.  The CG has nice amenities, as well as being close to Galax.  On Saturday there is a barbecue cook off in Galax along with craft vendors.  That night there is a concert on the parkway. On Friday night there is a live radio broadcast from the Rex Theater in Galax. I'm sure we will have a busy weekend with plenty of activities in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
  2. Pirateland Family Camping Resort in Myrtle Beach, SC - I found that locating a CG in Myrtle Beach to be a real challenge.  The big problem was locating one that was close to the beach, had reasonable rates and didn't charge for the use of facilities.  Pirateland solved all of the criteria.  We have 20 sites blocked off together, right on the beach.  We do however, need to make reservations buy July 1st, in order to reserve the 20 site block.  There will be more information to follow.  This looks like a great beach get-a-way.
 Things for your consideration:
  • I would ask that no more that 2 couples host a rally, except Christmas.
  • There are always plenty of members willing to lend a hand.
  • We still need hosts for Myrtle Beach and Luray.
  • We also need a happy hour host for GEAR.
  • Campground fees will be finalized next year after they adjust their annual rates.
  • Rally fees will be announced by the host, prior to the event.
I would like to wish our Alaska Caravan members safe travels.  I hope when you return, you will find time to attend some of our local rallies.  We are all looking forward to the "stories" and I am confident that there will be many. 

Dennis Reid

2013 Rally Schedule

Click here to link to the 2013 rally schedule as of 12/21/2012.  For the current rally schedule, use the link under the "Reference Documents" section on the right of the screen. 

Highlights from Williamsburg Rally

27 coaches gathered at the KOA Campground in Williamsburg the weekend of November 30 - December 2 for the Christmas rally.  Special thanks to the hosts:  Cil & Fairleigh Schoolar, Barbara & Bobby Dyke and Susan & Jim Buelow. Click here to view photos from the weekend.

A special welcome to new members Glenn & Tamie Zobel and Jim & Ann Dibble who attended the rally and Sam & Holly Mangano who were staying at the campground and decided to join Dogwood.

It was the perfect weekend - great weather, food and camaraderie.  The rally officially kicked off Friday with a fried chicken dinner.  Saturday the group was treated to an eggs benedict breakfast followed by a business meeting.  Saturday evening we enjoyed a beef tenderloin dinner followed by our traditional Yankee gift swap.  Thanks to Donna Gruel, our entertaining emcee, the woman of many interesting sunglasses!  After breakfast together Sunday morning, we packed up and headed home.  

Throughout the weekend, attendees enjoyed shopping, visiting historic sites, spa treatments, and meals out including lunch at Pierce's bbq sitting outside on picnic tables.

A special thanks to the following who donated items for the goodie bags:  Becky’s Hallmark, Dixie RV, Sun Trust, Virginia Lottery, US Air Force, and Harris Truck and Repair. 

Highlights from Urbanna Rally

The weekend of November 3, oyster lovers gathered at Ed Fisher's garage for the Urbanna Oyster Festival.  Click here to view photos from the rally.

2013-2014 Officers

President: Butch Jones
Vice President Membership: Pat Allen
Vice President Rallies: Dennis Reid
Vice President Communications: Carolyn Duff
Secretary: Liz Jones
Treasurer: Pat Allen
National Director: Ed Fisher
Alternate National Director: Mann Duff

Business Reports

A business meeting was held December 1.  Click to view the secretary's reporttreasurer's report and the revised standing rules.

Member Updates

Welcome to new members Glenn & Tamie Zobel, Jim & Ann Dibble, and Sam & Holly Mangano.

Mo & Shirley Martin and Reggie & Patsy Collins have sold their motor homes, so they will not be renewing their memberships.  We will miss them and wish them the best.    

Dogwood has 37 members who have paid their 2013 dues.  If you have not already done so, please mail a check, payable to "Dogwood Chapter - FMCA" to Pat Allen, Treasurer, 9507 Lakewater Court, Henrico, VA 23229. Dues are $10 per year.   

Dogwood T Shirt

Donna Gruel, the seamstress for our Dogwood mirror covers, is now embroidering dogwoods on shirts.  Take a look at her sample.  

"The dogwood flowers need not be pink. I'm certain most of the men would be happier with a white Dogwood - hence use a different color shirt.  I would ask that the individuals buy their own shirt - they will know it fits them and they could pick the color shirt they would like.  I would just charge a small amount to cover the thread costs...I'm not interested in making money on's my and I love doing it."  Donna    

Contact Donna if you are interested.  


Alligator Eye Salsa from Carol Warthan
2 bunches green onions - sliced
1/4 bell pepper - chopped
2 tomatoes - chopped
1 small can chopped black olives
1 small can chopped green chilis
1 whole jalapeno pepper - chopped
1/2 tsp. Accent
1/2 tsp. cilantro
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 large bottle Italian dressing

Donna Foore's Potato Salad
Donna wrote that the secret to her potato salad was that she added a bit of chow chow from MeadowCroft Farm.  They have a huge selection of sauces, relishes, jams and jellies, etc. and everything I have tried has been wonderful (and no, I don't own stock in the company!!!). 
                    MeadowCroft Farm LLC
                    404 Glebe School Rd.
                    Swoope, VA. 24479
                    Telephone: (540) 886-5249
                    FAX:  (540) 886-2344
                    Web Site: