2018 Campouts

January 8 – 11, 2018:     Fisheating Creek, Palmdale, FL

[As you can see, there is a gap between the July 2017 report and this January report. I do apologize for the missing camping info. I was busy all summer creating / sewing 3 costumes for the November parade at the Good Sam Fall Rally in Eustis, FL.  Check out the photo page. We were awarded second place. The theme for the rally’s parade was “Sam & Samantha on Safari”. Well, we were nonconformists and to be more relevant we chose to have “Sam & Samantha on Safari in the Everglades”. Not exactly what the judges were looking for.  We had come up with innovative costumes portraying critters in the Everglades. We had “Sam” & “Samantha” carrying our logo banner at the front of our group. Then came our fan-driven airboat (on a golf cart frame), an Alligator, a Bear, a Great White Egret, a Panther, a Bald Eagle, a Turtle, a Ranger fighting a python snake, a Flamingo, and a Butterfly with a Butterfly Catcher right behind her. We also had a Ranger with his pet raccoon that squirted onlookers, and a Palm Tree to give us shade as we moved along the parade route.  We had a fun time even if we didn’t win first place. (We should have.)  ]

Our January campout at Fisheating Creek was most relaxing and totally enjoyable. We had 11 rigs at this campout. We displayed our new individual logo flags at each of our sites. The small site flags match our large chapter banner that is displayed at each campout. Our host provided coffee and sweet treats for us each morning. We played Ladder Golf and card games. We had a campfire each evening. We roasted marshmallows and chatted while we watched the dancing flames. In honor of the Super Bowl that will soon be played, we had our annual Soup-er Bowl PotLuck. There were 8 crockpots steaming with the most delicious homemade soups. We found that the sturdy cardboard “4-hole drink holders” were a perfect way to hold 4 styrofoam cups. That way, we could sample four soups with one visit to the food table.  And, we had the “left-over” soups for the evening meal the next day. Yummy!  After all that food, many took walks on several trails the next morning and some rode their bicycles around the campground. A big Thank You to our hosts, Helmut & Donna for a great campout.  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~July 10-14th, 2017: Alligator Park, Punta Gorda, FL

We had 8 rigs parked side by side in a row ,just down form the smaller meeting room used for smaller groups. We had tables & chairs and a large screen TV & DVD player as well as 2 pool tables.  We had a delicious pot-luck meal on Tuesday followed by a movie night complete with popcorn. “RV” staring Robin Williams was the feature film.   Our mornings were spent in the pool, playing bean bag baseball, biking or all of the above. We played Wizard, Up the River, Golf, and Chicken foot Dominoes.   Wednesday eve several of us had hoped to take a boat cruise but due to the weather we went out to eat. The others stayed and played games or explored the Peace River Nature Center and Fisherman’s Village.   Thursday night we had another movie and root beer floats! The movie was “Where The Red Fern Grows”.   Friday morning, Host Paul prepared pancakes & sausage for our group before we said “good-by”.  Another GREAT camp-out with good friends and good food!!  Thank you Hosts Paul & Kathie, you planned a fun time for all.


June 12 – 16, 2017:  Harbor Lakes was a great place for us to hold a summer camp-out  Large cool meeting room, smaller “jig-saw puzzle” room, clean bathhouse and showers, pool & hot tub, Plus every morning, they had a large pot of decaf coffee sitting on a serving cart. Our Hosts John & Jean brought over our chapter’s air-pot with regular coffee in it so everyone was happy. Several brought their bicycles and toured the large Park between rain storms. We had 10 rigs this month.

Monday we arrived and had our social Happy Hour from 4:00 until 6:00 and then cards were player until 10:20pm. Such a kind employee. Waiting for the guys to finish their game of Wizard to lock up. The building is locked at 9:45pm the sign on the door says. Oops!
Tuesday we had our business meeting . During our meeting, the members chose which character they would be playing in the parade at the Good Sam Fall Rally. We still have “opening” for other characters.
Our Salad Pot Luck was held at noon. Delicious / nutritious choices and even had several desserts too. And it RAINED.. Pegs & Jokers and 9-Up the card game were played and then we were off to our RVs by 6:30pm. in the RAIN…
Wednesday, 8:00 coffee. 2 games of Bean Bag Baseball, men vs women from 9 -10:00am. Pool time was refreshing. John and his 3 great granddaughters were enjoying the water, until the thunder, and it RAINED...
No rain at 4:00 for Happy Hour.  After which the guys played Wizard and the ladies played Kismet, a dice game, until 8:30pm.
Thursday we again had our coffee time at 8:00 and we sat and talked until noon. A informative resident who had lived at the Harbor Lakes resort for 12 years kept us entertained for quite awhile telling us about the changes in the area and the camp-ground. He was a good salesman.  😉
Some took advantage of “Swim time” and some played cards games.  4:00 = Happy Snack Time again. Played different games until “closing time”.
Friday we had our Goodbye Coffee. Hosts Jean & John provided quite an assortment of delicious rolls and breakfast cakes. Forecast was for RAIN later in the morning so we packed up and headed for home. Nice RELAXING camp-out.
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 May 15-19, 2017= 9 rigs gathered at Collier Seminole State Park and welcomed 1 guest rig. The local inhabitants, hungry mosquitoes gave us a huge and immediate greeting, swarming us every time we exited our rigs. Despite our prolific use of bug spray, these flying Phlebotomists attacked at every opportunity. Regardless we had a fun camp-out.
Pot Luck on Tuesday, hosted by Carl & Becki was a feast for us! Our hosts provided a Honey Baked Ham & breads. The rest of us contributed sides and desserts; veggies & salads to cakes & cobbler with ice cream.
The campground has a screened room with tables & chairs that we used for our get-togethers. We played Bean Bag Baseball each morning and card & board games each afternoon. Some took naps and some ventured out to see the sights in the area such as Marco Island and Everglades National Park.
We had booked 4 days of camping, leaving Friday morning but by Thursday morning we all admitted we had donated enough blood to the local mosquito population and headed home. Some may say we were “sissy-marys” but we stuck it out for 3 full days and had fun.
 APRIL 25-30, 2017 = Spring Rally at the KOA in Okeechobee was a FUN time
Each morning we wore our bright green “gator” tee shirts and had no problem finding one another for breakfast in the meeting hall. Our camp sites #401 & 402 had a wonderful shade tree where we gathered for our daily Happy Hour.  “Navi- Gator” (mascot) was in the opening ceremonies. Gary set up the Bean Bag Baseball board the first day for our members to practice their throwing skill. It paid off as you will see later in this report.
Donna was the big money winner in Bingo and won more than enough to pay for the cost of the Rally, PLUS money in her pocket. Way to go Lucky Donna!
Our Thursday Happy Hour was a surprise for our ASDs Wayne & Joan McGee. Joan had just retired and this was the perfect time to express our chapter’s appreciation for all the hours (years) Wayne & Joan have given to the Florida Good Sams Rallies to make sure we campers have a grand experience. Margaret decorated a sheet cake in their honor. They plan to take 3 grandkids on a cross country tour of the USA, then the two will fly to Hawaii, stay a few days and then take a 31 day cruise to Australia & New Zealand then back to Hawaii and then home. We had to give them something to add to their wardrobe.
 Wayne received a “Big Kahuna” tee shirt and Joan received flower leis, a coconut bra, and a grass skirt which she wore (over her clothes) for the remainder of their party. Our members had brought all sorts of items Wayne & Joan could use on their travels and we surprised them with a HUGE bag stuffed full of these “appreciation” gifts for them. 
 4 “First Timers” were invited to our Happy Hour to “check us out”. We hope they enjoyed our company and one of the couples will be joining us next month for our May camp-out.
here is a note from our “coach” Carl:
 How about them “Everglades”
Sherman – 2017 Okeechobee “Wizard” Champion, he has won back to back championships 
        Donna and Bob W. – 2017 Okeechobee Horseshoe Champions. (Donna has lost track of her back to back to back…….to back victories)
         Everglades B.B. Baseball Champions 2017 Okeechobee Rally – alphabetical order
                Bob, boB,Cookie, Dan, Donna, Gary, Jerry, John, Margaret   
         The B. B. Baseball team leads the 2017 G.S.B.L. (Good Sam b.b. Baseball League) with a record of 6-2 and a win streak @ 5 Wins
                 Eustis – 0-1     Tallahassee 1-1    Okeechobee 5-0
And one last thing, thank you Michael for the “traveling” BeanBag Baseball trophy you presented to the chapter. We will over-look the baseball bat the player is holding. It’s the thought that counts. Right?   ~gail/pres.

2017 January Camp-out at Brownville Park north of Arcadia

6 rigs enjoyed 4 nights. For the most part, we had the park to ourselves. Games of Bean Bag Baseball were held in the mornings for those who wished to play. In the afternoons the men sat around and talked while maintaining the campfire. The women played the card game Farkle and the domino game of Chickenfoot. The campfire was slowly started on the first night (wet wood) and was kept burning until we departed. Some of our members cooked their hot dogs, kielbasa, and hamburgers over the open flame. Potatoes were wrapped in foil and placed in hot coals at the edge of the fire. Helmut & Donna were most accommodating hosts. They had morning coffee waiting for us each day and surprised us one night with a feast of s’mores. Some hiked the trails and some went to town for lunch and shopping in the antique shops. All had a great time!

2016 December Camp-out  at Lake Kissimmee St Pk

Margaret & Sherman hosted a festive time with afternoon Christmas crafts for the ladies and games for the men.  An armadillo made an unwelcome visit to our get together but a well aimed empty water bottle sent him on his way.  We had a loaded baked potato bar and make your own sundaes instead of the traditional pot luck. Everyone brought toppings for both and the Riley’s provided the potatoes and ice cream. Some of us took advantage of the many trails in the campground and biked and hiked.  We played some holiday games and sang Christmas carols on our last evening there. The Riley’s sent us on our way home after a breakfast feast of egg casserole, fruit, pastries and cookies and of course coffee !  We truly missed all who could not be with us and hope to see you at the next campout.

Our business meeting minutes are e-mailed to our members.