After Daytona's Bike Week (March 1- 9), which is known as "rain fest" for this year, we were ready for some dry rallies. We saw an ad in our February issue for a Trail of Tears Rally. We made some phone calls and we found out it is a BMW rally, so went anyway. This was held at Caston River Campground, 15 miles west of Marble Hill, Missouri (April 25, 26, 27).
Rich Jaeguers rode down from Cleveland and we put him up for the night. Early Friday morning Rich and I rode out to hook up with Jerry Hylton. We rode through heavy rain, but once we crossed the Mississippi River the sun was out. Oh yeah! - off came the rain gear. We pulled in around 3:00 P.M. and set up camp.
By Saturday, they had 180 sign-ins on the books. I counted twelve Guzzis. This was a nice rally with good food, good people and tons and tons of good back roads to ride.
Oh yeah - a lone Beamer pulled in next to our campsite. She came all the way from Dodgeville Wisconsin. Her name was Andrea, so we called her Andie. Rich is single and so is Andie, it was Beamer meets Guzzi.
By Sunday we all made new friends. I will try to make this rally again next year. Thanks to all the Beamer riders, it was a job done well.
Jerry Hylton and I pulled out early May 15th. I got us lost close to Oquawka, (sorry Jer). We pulled into the camp around 4:00 P.M. and Dan Prunuske rode in around 5:00 P.M. We set up camp, and then made a supper run to T.C.'S Pier.
On Friday, Rich and Andie arrived, now we have a party. Stan Overstreet and our Illinois group put on a real nice rally. We had 304 adults and 29 children. Mother Nature was very nice to us, the weather was great. A special thanks goes to Jerry Rhea, he is a local Guzzi rider that brings us firewood every year. (Thanks, Jerry.)
Karl Werth camped next to us this year. Last year he cut his eye and could not attend any of the rallies. Welcome back Karl.
The food was excellent this year (as always) it was a great time had by all. Thanks a lot Illinois.
25th BIG COUNTRY MGNOC RALLY
By: Bucky Bush
Well, the 25th Big Country MGNOC Rally is now history. In attendance we had 237 people, plus another 20 that were my helpers for the rally. The 25th was supposed to be my last Big Country Rally, but I will do two more with the 27th Big Country being my last and it will be the 34th MGNOC National Rally. After that, I will step aside and let the younger-set put on the rallies.
I want to thank all the sponsors that I have had over the years. [Ed Note: See Buck's write-up on his 25th in this same issue. -FW]
WEST VIRGINIA RALLY
That was from Bucky and he is aware I will add something about his rally.
On Memorial Day Weekend, the Ohio Troopers were out. Many of our riders got tickets this year.
On Friday, 4:00 P.M., we received heavy rains and high winds. Our riders coming in were nailed! Hey - late May is springtime!
Saturday we had our usual Memorial Day Ride through New Cumberland, with fire trucks front and rear on the parade. Sirens were on and the parade was five blocks long, with us in the middle. The people in this town like us, and the kids love it. I love this country, this is what it is all about.
We had demo rides from MGNA this year. Andie and Rich were there and Andie got a ride on a new Guzzi. She came back smiling.
Try to make Bucky's 2005 MGNOC National. It will be his last rally.
May 30th. This is an easy run for me. The weather was cool with NO rain. Andy (MGNOC Rep) and Mary Thompson puts this one on. This one is a no food, no door prize type rally. We had around 40 people this year. You can have just as much fun at these smaller rallies.
Karl Werth was there and he had over 420,000 on his Guzzi. If he had not cut his eye last year, he would have over 500,000 or more miles on it. You cannot hold a retired truck driver down!
Sergio DeSouza was there and telling us he's retiring in six years and moving back to Brazil you will be missed Sergio.
Thanks Andy and Mary - this was a nice laid-back rally with lots of mom and pop country restaurants, and super nice back roads. Your in the farm belt here.
Try to make our Kentucky Rally on August 25, 26, 27 and 28. We aim to please.
[Ed Note: I don't know why more people don't attend those rallies where less is planned. I love'em! I still get to do the ride, and I still get to visit with friends. I seldom win any kind of award anyway, and I seldom win a prize. I like the great food at the rallies, but I also like the ice cream I find in town, and I can browse the cafes and restaurants and often find a special one. You're missing out when you don't attend a more laid back event! -FW]