Lanny, Miller and Brandon set out for a spirited ride. Sherm, the Texas Ladies, Sandy and I decided we would take a more leisurely jaunt. Debbie was just getting back in the saddle after her wreck and we wanted to keep the pace comfortable for her. It's interesting that whenever we call for one of these more sedate rides, people flock to join us. We ended up with the original crew plus Butch & Teresa, Randy, Cleve and Coyote.
As usual, I was at the head of the pack. We headed out of Eureka Springs on Arkansas 23 South and made our first stop at the Shell station at the turnoff to War Eagle Mill to top off some fuel tanks. Coyote took his leave and headed on over to War Eagle alone.
We continued south through Huntsville and then turned east on Missouri 74, which we followed to the small town/village/crossroads of Kingston. I was very comfortable riding today.
Kingston has a gazebo in the center of the town square. We parked the bikes around it while some of us went into the little general store for ice cream. The low carb crew abstained. A second group, not related to us and consisting of several Harley's and a 1984 GL1200 GoldWing, arrived shortly after we did. The Hogs were from Kansas but the Wing rider, Randy, was from Kansas City, Missouri and only lived about fifteen miles from Cleve. We talked Wings and I showed him the Stop And Go tire plug kit. I should be getting a commission on these things.
From Kingston, we rode back up Missouri 21 and then took the back road (221 and 302 aka Rockhouse Road) back to Stonegate. We got back a little after 1:30 to find that the preparations for the Hot Sauce BBQ were well underway.
I tried to get my blog caught up but visiting got in the way.
The BBQ was ready. Pulled pork, pulled brisket, ribs, several sides and some amazing looking desserts. There was even angel food cake for us diabetic folks. I didn't get a picture but you can probably guess who was right at the head of the food line. Someone said they were going to stick close to me, but it isn't me that has the unerring knack of knowing where and when the line will start. If I just follow Sandy, I eat early and well.
Thanks to Hot Sauce and Margot for the work they put into organizing this every year, and to Gambler, Cargo, Ice Cream and the others who helped turn it into reality this year. The BBQ is always one of the high points of the VROC Eureka Springs Reunion.
After the eating was (mostly) done, it was time for the big raffle. All week, people had been buying raffle tickets and putting them in one of three jars. One was for a lovely patriotic quilt made by Bubbles. The second was for a very fine kitchen carving knife made by Laura's Bill. The third was for all the door prizes that had been donated by Kawasaki and others. The non-winning tickets would then be combined for a draw for half of the proceeds of the raffle, while the other half would be donated to Flint Street - Back Our Kids, a local organization that delivers lunches for underprivileged children in Western Carroll County.
Folks got chairs and arrayed themselves around the awning where the draws would be held. Patty? from Flint Street described their programs to the assembled multitudes. Meanwhile, Nash arrived late from Memphis on his pretty green Indian due to a wreck on the Pig Trail. Although the raffle ticket sales had just closed, Laura allowed him to buy some and he put them all in the Knife Jar.
Finally, it was time to start the draws, with the Flint Street folks doing the honours. First was the quilt, which was won by Cassie. Next was the knife, which was won by Nash. I watched them shake the drum before the draw. They shook it really well. As an accountant, I have to say that this was an example of LIFO. After this win, several people suggested raffling off Nash's motorcycle but he had this knife so it didn't happen.
With the big prizes taken care of, the kind Flint Street folks started pulling tickets from the last jar. As numbers were called, winners came up and chose a prize from the table. Sandy and I did quite well, with a couple of insulated mugs/glasses/bottles, a motorcycle cleaning kit and a few other items. When the table was clear and the last prize selected, half of the raffle proceeds ($288) were presented to the Flint Street contingent. Then one ticket was pulled for the $287 50/50 prize (we had no coins). That would have bought a lot of fuel and goodies but this was VROC. Members value the charitable organizations we support and, as has happened many times before, the winner donated the total prize to Flint Street to help them with their worthwhile cause.
The rest of the evening was perfect, weather-wise and company-wise. Folks mingled around the lot and rooms.
Some would be leaving in the morning, so there were many goodbyes or, more appropriately, au revoir. Happy trails until we meet again. Of course, some of us were staying until Sunday morning so we had one whole day more to enjoy the reunion. After many farewells, I worked my way back to the room and hit the hay.
Today's Route (88 motorcycle miles):