Good Sam Rally, Daytona Beach
November 1-2 –
We arrived at the Good Sam Club Rally at the Daytona International Speedway on Thursday and within a short period of time, were parked on the Raceway’s infield along with hundreds of RVs; mostly Class A motor homes. By Saturday, we learned that there were 3,800 RVs parked either in the infield or elsewhere on the Raceway grounds. As far as the eye can see, there are motorhomes, fifth wheels and the occasional travel trailer. We will probably buy the aerial photo view because this is seriously amazing.
The parking of all these rigs was relatively painless. We paid for electric camping so we are plugged into a four-rig electric outlet. No water but we filled our tanks before we got here so it is not a problem. The electric power is iffy in that there are power surges that causes our surge protector to shut down all power to the coach until the voltage is at an acceptable level – this is a good thing but annoying when it happens a lot- especially when you need air conditioning.
Each day of the four day rally is packed with all kinds of seminars relating to the RV lifestyle. I attended a seminar about using technology (OMG) such as phones, computers, GPS etc. as an RVer. It was interesting but actually, a little basic for me (I can’t believe I am saying that!) Naturally, there were people in the seminar who felt the need to let everyone know how much they knew which is always annoying to me and Bob had the same reaction when he attended a Satellite TV seminar. Still, I did get a lot of good information and suggestions. Some of the other seminars are “maximizing your batteries”, “polishing your wheels”, “power issues” etc…. (No further comment necessary)
There is also a large exhibitor tent filled with everything any RVer could possibly want; from satellite TV antennas to braking systems, to cleaning products. Picture this….3800 RVs each with at least 2 people in it and members of the public who pay to attend the rally on a day to day basis as well as the exhibitors. You can imagine how crowded the tent with the products displayed was all the time. So…picture this….with all of the crowds and the difficulty moving about the exhibitor tent, there were actually quite a few people who felt the need to bring their pets into the tent. That would have been OK I suppose but, picture about 1/5 of the attendees driving around in those scooters and then picture a bunch of folks who simply couldn’t possibly leave their dogs in their rigs so, put them in a baby carriage and rolled them around the exhibitors’ tent. What is with that?
The Daytona International Speedway is amazing. I had never been to a NASCAR speedway before. Both of us were amazed at the 33 degree banking on the curves. It is really really steep and to think that the drivers race around this tri-oval at incredible speeds is astounding. There is a rather large lake on the far straightaway; Lake Lowell. The lake even has a mooring dock and one of the activities involved fishing in the lake. Dixie and I have been walking a lot and Bob and I have been walking to the rally activities rather than taking the shuttles that run throughout the complex.
On Friday, the entertainment was Kenny Rodgers. OK, I know what you are going to say….who? But you would be amazed at all the songs you actually know that he sang; like Lucille(“you picked a fine time to leave me Lucille”), the Gambler (“you gotta know when to hold em, know when to fold em”) and Bob’s personal favorite, Ruby (“you’ve painted up your lips and curled your tinted hair….don’t take your love to town”). My personal favorite was the oldie but goodie that reminded of my psychedelic tuned in and turned on days – “I just dropped in to see what condition my condition was in”.
Kenny Rodgers was an absolutely incredible entertainer and we had a great time at the concert. He made us laugh a lot and really was a wonderful performer. One of the best things was a collage of the First Edition (his first group from the 60’s) including photos of him during that era – long hair and beard. The collage was played and it showed the First Edition singing “I just dropped in to see what condition my condition was in” except instead of the actual performance from the First Edition, Kenny Rodgers sang the song while the collage played. It was perfectly synced and was so cool. Again, the guy had the audience in the palm of his hand and it was very enjoyable. Bob was not expecting to enjoy the concert but by the end agreed that Kenny Rodgers was one of the best overall performers we have seen.
The photos aren’t that great because we were far up in the stands and there is a fence protecting the fans from the race surface and we were unfortunately, behind the fence so, the images are blurred.
After the concert, we were invited to attend a special reception for Good Sam Lifetime members; which we are. It was a dessert party held in the Daytona 500 museum; very very cool. We got to see the exhibits up close and personal including the 2012 winning car. Even if you are not a Nascar fan, the museum is impressive.