Sampson State Park, Romulus, NY was once again the site of the Annual Northeastern Tin Can Tourist Rally September 12-15, 2018. This was our second year attending and we were fortunate to have Thursday as our travel day this year so we could enjoy the evening festivities that night AND be able to select an awesome campsite more in the “hub” of the action.
(Avioners sure to read all the way to the end to see photos of fellow Avions at the rally too!)
Reddy helped co-pilot…of course! (ha ha- you should have heard her snoring!)
We arrived (after a five hour trip) at around 1:30 PM and selected site #53 this year. It was a great choice because we could park parallel to the street, be more in the center hub and also an quick walk down the slope to the concert and happy hour tent and bathroom building (which saves on black water tank use) since this state campground only provides electric hook ups. They have a communal dump station and fresh water fill at end of campground drive. More about that later in another post.
Sampson State Park Virtual Tour
Towing this 28 foot Avion is a breeze. Kevin continues to remark how you hardly know it is there. We average a cruising speed of 60 mph which we feel is safe and comfortable for us, our truck and the trailer. The weather was warm, mid to high 80’s and expected to be that for the entire weekend which for this time of year is very warm. We like 70’s thank you!!
Once at the campground Kevin proceeded with his normal set up routine and I with mine. I have the responsibility of decor, outside amenities and helping with the flag install. This was the first time we were officially using our new flag holder which holds 5 flags. Sadly not all of the ones we ordered came in on time, but we did have our American Flag and our TCT (Tin Can Tourist) flags. I will be doing a specific post on how we repurposed things from Lowe’s to make our flagpoles since the cost of ready made ones were crazy expensive!
Many of the vintage campers had already come in and more rolled in as we were setting up our campsite. Here are some great photos!
These rallies are chocked full of great people and many opportunities to socialize and get to know each other, and their RV’s better. Rarely can you take your pet for a walk, or saunter to the Rec Hall or lavatory without sparking up a conversation with someone else who is passionate about their vintage rig. We feel right at home!
Thursday evening we had a pizza party in the Rec Hall which is reserved exclusively for our TCT group use all weekend. Yes, we indulged in Pizza and it was yummy and plenty pot luck salads and desserts! (these “canners” know how to party and cook!) We also indoctrinated several new TCT members (flash back for me how i totally messed up the theme song last year when we were newbies!) Everyone had a blast!
Friday morning was a coffee and donut informal gathering back at the Rec Hall. These are always great ways to move around, sit with different people and share tips, travels and tales about vintage RVing. Friday and Saturday we also were each allowed to have a “flea market table” at our sites if we wanted to. Luck will have it we still have plenty to sell and were able to sell quite a bit of stuff which essentially paid for our entire trip! Nice!! and it clears out more from our RV garage and home that we need to downsize.
Friday night there was a happy hour under the huge social tent which is set up in the middle of the campground making it easy for everyone to get to. (it is also next to the bathroom pavilion which is doubly handy cause lets face it, there is quite a bit of libations flowing! Happy Hour was at 5 PM with pot luck appetizers. I made cantalope melon bites wrapped in prosciutto then put on skewers with mozzarella balls, and a sprig of fresh mint. Then laced with Balsamic glaze, these little beauties were gobbled up by the over 30 attendees in a heartbeat. They were yummy and perfect for a warm, very warm September evening. A little later we all strolled en-mass up to the Rec Hall at 6 PM for the Famous Mac N Cheese and Chili Cookoff Dinner competition. I did not partake in competing this year, but I brought a tossed salad. Once again, the wonderful food selections were amazing and plentiful with 13 varieties of homemade chili and nearly that many Mac N Cheese casseroles. Add to that tons of various salads and a whole table of desserts and no one would go “home” hungry! We sure did not! It is so great not having to plan to make all your own meals for four days! Wow!
Friday night beginning at 7 PM there was a great bluegrass four piece live band under the social tent. We went close by for a while then moved up to our camper and could enjoy the great music wafting over the lawn while stoking up our own nice campfire. We were only perhaps 100 feet from the tent so it was like our own private concert. We were tired after a full day of flea market sales and giving tours!
(this photo above is actually Saturday night’s impromptu Happy Hour , not on the schedule but we all said….”why not”??!!
You are beginning to see a theme here…..Canners like to party…and EAT! (did I forget to mention that at every evening meal and happy hour there is wine and other non alcoholic beverages!)
Saturday was no exception, first a pancake breakfast in the Rec hall, Come dressed in your favorite RV Jammies contest!…… then Saturday night the catered Chicken BBQ with again a myriad of pot luck dishes and desserts. Check out these photos above!
In between during the day on Saturday we all hosted three hours of an OPEN HOUSE TOUR where most of us have our trailers or RVs open for public visitors and fellow canners to tour, talk with the owners and share stories. I did not count how many visitors we had but it had to be at least 80 people. Some were vintage camper owners who had gotten nixed out of being in the TCT loop because the event sold out this year in 31 minutes! Next year, there is talk to expand into a second loop at the campground so more TCT member can get in on all the special events, etc. that comes with your official TCT event registration package. That would be good.
One outstanding RV this year was just two sites away from us. Called “THE ROCKET” this 42 foot 1956 trailer is right out of an I Love Lucy story! Check out these photos. This was a “field find” with trees and yuck growing out of every crevasse and has been completely and faithfully restored and used quite regularly for camping. It was set up in a Christmas theme this year and totally awesome!
Saturday night was capped off with the awards for Best Lights, Best of Show and Best PJ’s awards being given out at the Chicken BBQ dinner. Fun times and great conversation!
Below is the vintage Airstream that won Best in Show….beautifully restored we believe the owners are from Canada. As participants we do get a list of everyone who has attended with their year of rig, name, address and email so we can keep in touch. Nice again!
Sunday we decided to loaf around our camp in the morning and cooked breakfast (our favorite meal when camping) and savored a beautiful morning having breakfast in our PJ’s at our picnic table. I love morning coffee, etc. outdoors….so nice! By 11 AM most were leaving and so were we. We stopped at the campground at Turning Stone Casino in Verona on our way back to scope out our reservations for the end of the month….we will be out camping again from Sept 28-Oct 5 while I attend a convention at the Casino event center.
I would be remiss without thanking publicly Ed and Miriam Moore who have orchestrated and coordinated this rally for at least the last 5-8 years. They are lovely folks who try and succeed so well to make everyone happy and to plan so many great aspects of this rally. The Moore’s announced they are retiring from coordinating after this year and their successor has yet to be announced, but will have big shoes to fill. It will be nice for Ed and Miriam to be able to actually fully enjoy just being participants next year!
I HAVE SAVED THE BEST FOR LAST! There were FOUR (including us) Avioner couples present at this years TCT Rally and we understand next year a few more are going to make every effort to attend. Since this is an Avion blog I will leave you with the photos of our Avion buddies at the rally!
So this draws to a close the fun time we had once again at the Northeastern Tin Can Tourist Rally at Sampson State Park. Clearly as we get more time to travel we will make attending other TCT rallies in other states a priority. We love the club and all it is about and encourage our fellow Vintage Camper lovers to get involved in TCT!
Here is a link to the Tin Can Tourist history