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Perry Registration Is Open!

Finally, registration for FMCA’s 97th International Convention and RV Expo, scheduled for March 15 through 18, 2018, at the Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter is open. Click Here to register.

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In order to better serve you, we ask that you please update the Coach Make/Manufacturer field in your Membership Profile at your earliest convenience if you have not already done so.

To All Our Friends in South Texas, Louisiana and Florida

Here at FMCA our hearts go out to all those who have been impacted by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma. These include the area residents, victims, first responders, and citizens who have stepped in to assist their neighbors.

Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma: Looking for resources or ways you can help?

1. Make a Donation
The following organizations* are accepting donations for South Texas and Florida relief efforts.
American Red Cross: www.redcross.org (https://www.redcross.org) or call 1-800-HELP-NOW (800-435-7669). Or text IRMA or HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
The Salvation Army: give.salvationarmyusa.orgor call 1-800-725-2769. Or text STORM to 51555.
Catholic Charities USA: www.catholiccharitiesusa.orgor call 800-919-9338. Or text CCUSADISASTER to 71777.
*Please note FMCA is not affiliated with and/or advocating these organizations.

2. Volunteer with RV Disaster Corps
RV Disaster Corps has put out a call for RVers to staff volunteer centers. Volunteers with RV Disaster Corps assist people displaced by storms and help first responders. Because RV Disaster Corps volunteers have their own accommodations, they can relocate to the impacted area without requiring scarce local housing resources. www.rvdisastercorps.org.

3. Help Evacuees Find a Safe Place
Texas: The Texas Association of Campground Owners has identified RV parks with space available for Hurricane Harvey evacuees. Visit https://texascampgrounds.com or www.TexasCabinRentals.net. It is recommended to call the parks in advance; availability may change based on current weather.

Florida and Alabama campgrounds: Information will be posted as available: www.CampFlorida.com and www.CampInAlabama.com.

Alabama state parks: Call 1-800-ALA-PARK (1-800-252-7275) for availability.

Florida road conditions: Real-time traffic information is available at https://fl511.com. Or call (866) 511-3352; in Florida, dial 511.

Member Vote: Voting Now Open

CLICK HERE to download and print a copy of the ballot.

Please note, all ballots must be sent via postal mail to: Mandel and Associates, Inc., 431 Ohio Pike, Suite 201, Cincinnati, OH 45255

FMCA Remodel

Big news! It's time to take a step in the right direction, CLICK HERE to learn more about FMCA's plans to remodel.

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For the answer to this brainteaser, revisit FMCA's summer convention that took place in July 1983 at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa. The event, called the 20th anniversary "Pennsylvania Dutch" convention, was FMCA's largest gathering at the time, attracting 2,729 motor coaches.

One of the attending families was Tom and Florence "Flossie" Townsend, F16402, who joined FMCA in 1975. The Lambertville, Mich., couple almost didn’t' make it to Lehigh.

"We were having a real problem with our motorhome," Flossie recalled. "It would run for 70 to 80 miles and then it would lock up. We sat in a garage for about two days trying to get it fixed."

Just in time for prizes

Attempts to repair their motorhome were unsuccessful. The Townsends made it to Lehigh, though, by stopping every 60 to 70 miles to put fresh gas in the motorhome.

"I think we got there just about the last day of the convention," Flossie said, "and that's the day they were having most of the prize drawings." (The Townsends had the motorhome repaired after the convention. The fix entailed rerouting the fuel line away from the exhaust system to correct a vapor lock problem.)

At Lehigh, FMCA was awarding more than 200 prizes, including a brand-new Chevrolet Chevette as the grand prize. The Townsends purchased tickets for the prize drawing.

"I kept telling my wife, 'I'm going to win that car,' " Tom said. "But when they drew my name first, I said, 'Awe no, I’m out of the running for the car.' "

The final three prize winners were drawn in reverse order. So, although Townsend was the first name drawn from the "hat," Tom and Flossie won third prize, a Honda 500-watt portable generator. N.J. Hathaway, F23198, of Mesa, Ariz., won the Chevette.

Twenty years later …

For the Townsends, history repeated itself. Well, sort of.

Fast-forward to July 2003. The place: Hamburg County Fairgrounds in Buffalo, N.Y., site of FMCA's 70th International Convention.

"The only FMCA conventions we haven’t been to are the ones way out West," Tom said. "Other than that, we've probably been to just about all of them. Once you do it, you really can't get it out of your blood."

In Buffalo, the Townsends were entered in FMCA's 40th Anniversary Membership Recruitment Contest because Tom had recruited at least one new family member to FMCA during the contest period.

"Anytime I run into someone who doesn't belong to FMCA, I tell them about it," he said. "And I carry extra membership applications. They might not turn it in, but I always give them one."

His friend Don West, F316940, who joined FMCA in September 2002, did turn one in, and that generated the Townsend's contest entry at the "Shuffle off to Buffalo" convention.

From the 4,345 entries, the Townsends' name was drawn first again. Only this time, the first name selected won the grand prize, a 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser.

Breaking the news

Tom and Flossie attended the convention in Buffalo but departed prior to Sunday evening's prize drawing. They received the news while at a rest area off the Ohio Turnpike, about 80 miles from home.

They were returning a call to Jeff Jefcoat, FMCA national president at the time, who had been trying to reach them from Buffalo. "My wife wouldn't let me pull out of the rest area until I called Jeff back on our cell phone," Tom said. "We thought something was wrong."

Jefcoat delivered the news that the Townsends were the grand-prize winner. "Well, I'll tell you this: It about blew me out of my seat," Tom said. "In fact, I called him back 15 minutes later because I was still in shock and I said, 'Jeff, did you just say I won a PT Cruiser?' "

'A lot of friends'

Tom and Flossie have owned Townsend Carpeting in Lambertville since 1969. They have three children and 10 grandchildren.

The Townsends have owned about 13 motorhomes, Tom said, including their current coach, a 40-foot Prevost LeMirage XL, which they purchased in mid-2003.

Tennessee is one of their favorite destinations. They own a cabin in Townsend, about 20 miles west of Gatlinburg. "We have a lot of friends in all different places, and it's all because of the FMCA rallies."

Behind the Prevost, they tow a 24-foot enclosed trailer to haul a golf cart and Tom's Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Soon they may be pulling the PT Cruiser. The grand prize included a towing package donated by Blue ox and a lube pump supplied by Remco Manufacturing.

"The PT Cruiser is a nice car and it's surprising how much room there is inside," Tom said. "And it rides really nice."

He's purchased a special license plate for the car. "If anybody sees an FMCA license plate on a red PT Cruiser, they'll know it's us. We're real happy and would like to thank the people at FMCA."

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