Motorhome Chapter Spotlight | FMCA
These Ohio FMCA members are continuing a history of fun.
By Peggy Jordan, F401999
You may be able to guess where this chapter is based by its name. Then again, you may not. The "Buckeyes" part refers to Ohio, of course, but a history lesson may be in order regarding "Western Reserve." That part of the name refers to the northeastern area of Ohio where most members live, and where pioneers established towns and cities during the late 1700s.
The chapter has 54 member families and a history that goes back 10 years. This past August, the Western Reserve Buckeyes celebrated that milestone anniversary with one of their largest-ever rallies. Sixty-five current and past chapter members and 27 coaches were in attendance. "This anniversary was one of our most exciting rallies," said Dean Arbogast, chapter president. "It was great seeing those you hadn't seen in a long time."
The rally was one of the six events planned this year for chapter members, one rally in each month from May through October — plus the annual November chapter dinner. Dean said the chapter usually meets in RV parks or county fairgrounds. Most rallies take place over the weekend, starting on a Thursday or Friday.
Meals are up to the rally host. "Whether we go out to eat or not depends," Dean said. "Every rally host can choose what they want to do. At my rally, we all went to a local restaurant to eat."
Rally planners also take advantage of events or sights in the area, if they're available. Chapter members have attended the Ohio River Sternwheel Festival in Marietta, Ohio; the Bob Evans Farm Festival in Bidwell, Ohio; and a steam engine show in Mansfield, Ohio. Dean explained, "We try to go to different places a lot."
Sometimes chapter friends spend extra time together outside "official" rallies, as they did this past August at the Shaker Woods Festival in Columbiana, Ohio.
Rally activities include beanbag baseball games, and occasional crafts sessions for the ladies. Backyard mechanics appreciate the fact that a certified RV technician is in the chapter, so they get advice about how to repair their coaches.
No matter what they do or where they meet, it's the simple pleasure of socializing that Western Reserve Buckeyes enjoy most. At each rally, Dean said, "We usually try to have a big campfire — just sit around and gab around a campfire. We have a lot of fun doing that."