Saturday, March 25, 2023

July 18-24, 2022 Road trip to Wisconsin and Jimmy Buffett tailgate party

 July 18 We left for WI/SD/MN today by car.  We now have favorite restaurants and hotels along the way.  We stopped at Down Home BBQ south of Birmingham.  There ribs were great, but the brisket wasn’t as good as we remembered.  Stayed north of Birmingham at Fultondale Holiday Inn Express, again. 

7-19 We stopped at a Cook Out fast food restaurant in Paducah, Illinois.  Dave had been craving a corndog and you could get one as one of your sides!!  He was in heaven, and the hamburgers were good, too.   Stayed at Champaign, IL Holiday Inn Express, again.

I liked the signs on their walls

7-20. When we crossed into Wisconsin, we wanted to go to Culver’s for burgers (so much for the nice picnic food I brought along).  We get to Wisconsin and their frozen custard flavor of the day was Georgia Peach!  

We stopped at a rest stop and decided to take a hike to stretch our legs.  Beautiful view.  We made it to Rice Lake WI Holiday Inn Express.

7-21. We went to Cumberland today to see Dave’s mom, Alice.  We picked her up and went to Dave’s sister’s home, Debbie, outside of Cumberland.  She has a green thumb and her yard was beautiful.  We had a nice day visiting at her home.  We had dinner in Cumberland with Alice, Debbie and Randy, and Dean Roth. 

"she shed" out back

chickens in their cage

garden protected from the deer

Debbie and Charlie in her "she shed"

7-22 we went back to Cumberland this morning to pick up Alice for an adventure.  I have several friends that have been telling me that they would like to go to a Jimmy Buffett concert with me if I went again.  Well, he happened to be playing in Wisconsin at Alpine Valley.  Alice thought it would be fun to go, too.  She and Dave will enjoy the tailgate party, but either listen to the concert in the car on XM radio, or go back to the hotel.  
On the way to Janesville, WI, Alice lost one of her hearing aids.  We looked all through the car and called the 2 places we had stopped for gas, but no luck.  Will keep looking and stop at the some places on our way home.  
We arrived at the Americinn in Janesville, WI about 4:30 about the same time as 2 friends.  Nancy Sundstrom from Groton, SD and Dee Dee Rap (who we hadn’t met) from Sioux Falls, SD.  I met Nancy in dental assisting class in Watertown, SD in 1974. 

Nancy and DeeDee

We hung out by the swimming pool after swimming and placed card games.  We had pizza delivered to the hotel about the time Gene Schneider and Lorraine Himrich arrived from the Black Hills, SD, dental school friends since the mid 80”s.  Lorraine’s daughter and husband joined us later, Galen and Kyle DeReu.  We had a fun night with everyone getting acquainted.  

7-23 Saturday.  The majority of us went to Walmart with a shopping list for our tailgate party. Alice hadn’t slept well and didn’t feel well, so we took 2 carloads of people.  Dave and Alice planned to drive separate and join us later if Alice felt better.  

Just met last night and were like 2 peas in a pod-Nancy and Lorraine

 We arrived at the Alpine Valley Music Theater about 3:30.  We parked and set up a tent, chairs, decorations, coolers and a grill.  Joe and Erin Claussen, friends from Woodbury, MN, met us there shortly after we arrived.  We enjoyed margaritas and cheese burgers in paradise.  At 4:30, we were told the concert was cancelled because of heavy winds and rain!!!  And we had to be out of the venue by 6:00.  WHAT A BUMMER!!  But we didn’t let that spoil our fun.  We had everything packed up and left by 5:45.  Dave and Alice were on their way, so they turned around. 


setting up the tent Nancy brought before more cars pull in behind us

Lorraine with her daughter Galen

DeeDee, Nancy, Mary

Gene getting the grill out of his truck

Nancy and DeeDee

Lorraine and me

Kyle and Galen DeRue, Gene Schneider

wanted to show off the fun decorations Nancy brought

Kyle, Galen, Lorraine, Gene, Nancy, DeeDee

Joe and Erin Clausen

Mary, Joe and Erin

me having too much fun

Nancy and DeeDee having way too much fun

Mary, Lorraine and Galen

Gene sporting a parrothead hat

Erin and Joe, Kyle and Galen, Lorraine, Gene, Nancy, DeeDee, Mary

Erin, DeeDee, Nancy, Security telling us we had to leave, Mary, Lorraine, Galen

We all decided to go back to the hotel and continue the party.  Jeff and Laurie Rhody and their daughter Hannah were on their way to the concert to join us.  Jeff was a classmate of mine and Gene’s in dental school. They said they would meet us at the hotel, too.  Jeff and Laurie had met me at a Jimmy Buffett concert here many years ago, maybe 2011.  
At the hotel, there was an area outside a back door with picnic tables where we set up our party.  That is until the rain also hit there.

Mary Roth, Gene Schneider, Jeff Rhody class of 87, we sat alphabetically the first 2 years of dental school

from our yearbook freshman year 1983

Hannah Rhody, Mary Roth, Jeff Rhody
Erin and Joe with Dave's mom, Alice

Gene’s room was connected to Lorraine’s and Galen and Kyles, so we moved the party to their 2 rooms.  Everyone loved meeting Alice and loved visiting with her.  We really had a fun night visiting more than we would have at the concert.  We can get our money back, or return in 3 weeks for the rescheduled concert.  Of course that night several of us thought we’d return.  But actually only Jeff and Laurie made it.

Alice having way too much fun
Gene had a hole in his back pocket
Everyone had so much fun with Alice

 7-24 We headed back to Cumberland, WI and stopped at the same gas stations to check on Alice’s hearing aid.  No luck. 

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