MCVO's 6th Annual Wine Country Tour

Hisserman

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MCVO\'s 6th Annual Wine Country Tour

Last Friday, Saturday and Sunday we took 16 Vipers up to the Old Mission Peninsula in the Traverse City, Michigan area for our annual Wine Tour. We only had about 2/3'rds the cars we usually have, but we had twice the fun!

Members grouped together in small caravans on their way up-State. Here our small group first met at the Chrysler Museum.

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That location was the perfect launch site for a fast moving drive to our breakfast stop. The other drivers on the road got the sense that something was up as we wizzed by (thank God for our Valentine 1's!!). Once at the breakfast stop we began adding to our group. . .

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After a famous ******* Barrel breakfast, we resumed the pace. Of course at the speeds we were traveling we began to use up the consumables. These rural gas dealers love to see something like this!

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After about four hours of stimulating Viper driving we finally made it up to the Bayshore Resort and hooked up with the other groups that we were joining. It was a little cooler than usual and we had to duck some rain, but overall the weather was fine.

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We had a beachside barbeque and opening reception. In spite of the consumption of various forms of anti-freeze, the cold winds eventually forced us inside the resort to continue our partying. We had party favors and give-a-ways for everyone who attended. Among the favors were special bottles of wine with the MCVO logo on them and small wine racks with both a GTS and RT-10 on the base (see, I told you that you should have come, Sam!).

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I'm posting this picture of one of the clusters at the inside function on a dare. Suffice it to say these women weren't wondering what "triple digit speeds" means, they all know! Oh, and Mike, they said that they would let you in on the tech talk next year . . .

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The next morning we got up early and started our day by heading up to the Old Mission Lighthouse.

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For those of you who follow other posts on this forum, the lady in the hat is "the perfect Viper wife" (and that's Steve grinning with their new ride in the background) -- sorry for the blur, but it had been a rough night!

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The old lighthouse and the surrounding pre-Civil War buildings provided a grand setting, even if Lake Michigan is at a long-time low level (anyone see the Al Gore movie!).

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After the lighthouse we took another short, but spirited, ride and began hitting the wineries. It got cloudy here, but the weather held.

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Then we formed yet another fun caravan zooming across winding roads with spectacular scenery to the next great little winery -- tough duty!

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Finally we had enough wine so that it was time for lunch. . .

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It was a terrific little place with good food and they seated us in the middle of an art gallery. That's Zack Thompson (of JR Thompson) and his wife, who joined us with their red GTS (the blond is Maureen Hackney, our super social director!).

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Then after lunch, it was time for more wineries!! As you can see, the setting for all of this was picture perfect -- Traverse Bay on both sides of the peninsula and scenic vegetation (including grapes) all over the place. This winery is where we took our group photo. The photographer directed us all so carefully -- we're sure the cars spell out something obscene if you get high enough in the air!

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Here's a closer shot of the famous yellow beast that was the focus everywhere we went. Steve got several chances to demonstrate that it goes as well as it shows!

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Finally, after everyone had consumed enough afternoon wine, we took a small break and then headed out for dinner. The townspeople knew that the Viper Club was in town. The pictures inside the restaurant were all censored, but the people in the restaurant will remember us for some time into the future (although they did ask us to come back next year!).

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After dinner it was back to the Resort for more fun. We started out by taking over the indoor pool area. After they chased us out of there we went into the breakfast room. After they closed that room down we went to a couple of members' rooms. After that, those still standing stumbled out onto the beach where we out-partied the young resort staff!

With great foresight, the brunch the next morning wasn't scheduled to start until 10:30 am. It was another beautiful waterside setting for the Vipers to cluster.

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Following brunch some members started on the journey back home. Others left with an eye-popping, wheel spinning demonstration for the kids who had assembled in the parking lot and headed to the Cherry Republic in Glen Arbor, Michigan. This creative complex of buildings offers everything you can eat, drink, wear, or otherwise utilize with cherries in it. It has been a traditional ending stop for many repeat attendees on the Wine Tour.

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Finally, we couldn't hold off the inevitable, we headed back home. Another invigorating four hour caravan that caught many a motorist's eye as we swept by "in a brisk fashion".

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It was a fun, relaxing weekend that represents all that owning a Viper and being a member of the Viper Club is about. We all want to offer a special thanks to Frank and Kim Berle (and their son, Chris) for setting up all the arrangements, and to Maureen and all the others for making it a special weekend.

Oh, and by the way, taste some of that Michigan wine -- you'll see why it wins national and international awards!

:headbang: :headbang: :headbang: :headbang:
 

Dexter

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Re: MCVO\'s 6th Annual Wine Country Tour

It looks like a GREAT outing! We couldn't make it this year but next year is a must.

Thanks for the great documentary Bruce! :2tu:
 

Steve 00RT/10

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Re: MCVO\'s 6th Annual Wine Country Tour

Nice chronicle of the week end Bruce. We've been to all 6 of these since 2001 and have always had a great time. Hats off to the Berles for a job well done! Hard to believe this event kind of marks the beginning of the end of another Viper season.........at least it does up here ;)

Steve
 
R

RTED

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Re: MCVO\'s 6th Annual Wine Country Tour

Bruce,

Fabulous job capturing this past weekend MCVO Wine Tour. What a great event, terrific people and memories that will last.....until next years wine tour!
 

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