The 2006 DMA Fall Tour turned out to be the second most attended fall event! With a total 43 members and 12 DeLoreans in attendance, the event was a major blast. Even though mother nature forecasted a two inch rainfall that was supposed to drown our weekend, all of the attendees showed up ready to go. Some members chose not to drive their DeLoreans due to the harsh weather forecast, but that didn't matter one bit. Everyone who attended the event had a great time and thanked "Evil" Dan for organizing such a great weekend.
We decided to start this year's tour on a Friday evening for attendees who were coming from long distances and wanted to get an early start on the weekend. We met up with several owners and enthusiasts at a meeting place not far from our Friday evening hotel and dinner location.
We booked the Stockton Inn located in Stockton, NJ. The dinner was OUT OF THIS WORLD, and the rooms were to die for. We all dined and enjoyed some cocktails to unwind from a long week of work and personal commitments. Long time friends greeted each other, while others forged new friendships with those in attendance whom they had never met before.
Some people called it a night after a long and relaxing dinner, and got themselves tucked in for a nice slumber at the Stockton Inn and other surrounding Inns. Meanwhile, several people went to work putting together the final touches on a surprise treat for the tour... GOODIE BAGS!
We decided to put together goodie bags containing food, drinks, fruit, napkins, audio CDs, directions, itinerary for the tour, and our new member name tags!
Special thanks to Stephen Card and family for making the new name tags. THEY LOOK GREAT!
Saturday morning we woke to the happy news that the two inches of rain forecast for Saturday had fallen during the night and the new forecast was for great weather! We all had our breakfast and gathered in the Stockton Inn's parking lot at the scheduled departure time. Everyone was given their goodie bags with all the trimmings, a few announcements were made about the days events, and we got on our way!
Our first stop was at a scenic foot bridge that overlooked the Delaware river. We stopped for a while to take in the scenery and cross the bridge from the PA side to the NJ side.
On the move again, we headed to our second destination. River Country USA. This location on the Delaware is home to one of the rivers largest recreational tubing, rafting and kayak resorts in the area. We were greeted by Dan Breen who owns the establishment. Dan did a great job of telling us the history of the river and many facts about their daily operations. In peak summer hours and holiday weekends, as many as 10,000 people go through his establishment!
Dan also gave us the bone chilling details on the recent floods that have occurred in the past two years on the river and the effects it has had.
While the Delaware river is most famous for it's history of George Washington Crossing in a pivotal turning point during the revolutionary war, it has been in the news many times recently due to massive floods that have hit the area. In the past two years, the river has flooded three times to over 28+ feet its typical high point.
We were able to witness many residual effects the flood waters had bestowed on the area, and Dan was able to provide very shocking details about how badly the area we stood on had been ravaged by the flood waters. Dan's stories can make anyone appreciate just how powerful mother nature can be!
After Dan's tour of River Country USA, we had time to enjoy the scenery and shop in the local antique stores nearby. Members were treated to two more surprises at this point.
Surprise #1: SUNSHINE! Yes, the sun finally started to break through the clouds and a beautiful blue sky was right behind it
Surprise #2: Little did we know (even when planning the event) that Dan Breen's wife was from Ireland, and actually worked at the DeLorean plant!
Once we found out that Kate was from Ireland and actually had lived right near the DeLorean manufacturing plant, we had to get her to tell us some details and stories about how it impacted people's lives.
She was MORE then happy to oblige by telling stories and recalling various memories about people working for DeLorean and all the history around the events that took place.
Members listened closely to all she had to say about her experiences and asked many questions. It is truly an interesting experience any time you encounter a person who experienced what we have only read about, and the stories they have to tell help us to paint a better picture of what it was like then/there.
Our time at River Country drew to a close, and we were off to our next destination. Next stop was to be Sand Castle Winery for a great wine tasting lunch and tour of the wineries cellar where they process their grapes into the delicious wines we were to be sampling. We continued our way out scenic Route 32 in Pennsylvania, and were treated to gorgeous views of the river, and even some waterfalls that cascaded down the rocks to our left as we drove north on the winding country roads. The chatter on the two-way radios constantly remarked on how beautiful the scenery was and what a fun the twisting road was to drive.
When we arrived at Sand Castle winery, we were greeted by several more members who met up with the group to continue the remainder of the fall tour with us. Our group was continuing to grow larger with every moment of the day!
The Winery itself is a new building that is still under construction. While it was not completely finished, it was not difficult to tell that this would be an impressive building. It sits atop a hill overlooking the Delaware river and the valley. With vineyards stretching up over the hills as far as the eye can see, it was easy to imagine how lush and beautiful the vines must be during the growing season.
We were met by the owner of the Winery who took us into the building to begin our tour and wine tasting lunch experience.
The winery staff took extra good care of us as we began our taste testing lunch. Many of us learned various facts about the wine tasting process while we happily ate the wide spread of food that had been prepared for our lunch. Joseph entertained the group with witty stories about this beginnings in the wine industry. We leisurely took our time and sampled each of the unique flavors that the winery bottles.
Several of our members are wine connoisseurs, or had actually bottled their own wines. They were ecstatic to have the opportunity to speak with Joseph and ask questions about his processes and experience in making wine.
Sand Castle winery is best known for its Apple Spice Wine. This was by far the best of the bunch for many of us. It was a dessert wine that can be served chilled, or heated. No matter how you prepared this delightful wine, it was guaranteed to make you want more. Many of us bought several bottles before we left.
After lunch and wine sampling was completed, it was time to see the REAL deal. Joseph took us on a tour of the cellar of the winery where we witnessed an array of vats, fermentation barrels, and other items used in the making of the wine. If you are ever in the area and get a chance to go to this winery, we HIGHLY recommend it!
Once again, it was time to shove off and make our way onto the main part of our driving tour. Before we left we were able to purchase bottles of wine from Sand Castle Winery.
Once on the road, the sky continued to clear and the colors became brighter than ever before. Rolling hills, lush pastures, and landscapes with barns and farms painted the landscape as we drove even further north.
We stopped briefly towards the end of the driving tour at the Delaware Water Gap. This area offers an impressive view of the mountain range that separates NJ and PA.
The view of the Delaware Water Gap is truly impressive. Part of the mountain range is actually connected to the Appalachian trail. Those of us who decided to stop off at this location decided to take a few photos of some of the cars, and even a group shot.
It wasn't long before we were back on the road again to meet up with the rest of the group who had gone ahead to our Saturday night hotel accommodations. The Shannon Inn (you can never get enough Irish stuff in with a DeLorean crowd) was ready for us to check in. We had even made special arrangements to keep the indoor pool and hotel bar open late for us to use after our dinner!
After checking into our hotel and taking a while to freshen up, the group headed over to the Sycamore Grill. The owner of the restaurant was so excited to have us there, she roped off a large section in the front of the parking lot to showcase the DeLoreans.
Dinner was set to be a fantastic spread of food, and as usual, we had a couple of guest speakers to entertain the crowd, as well as a few more surprises up our sleeves.
As members arrived, they were greeted at their dining seats with free hats, DeLorean accessories, and magazines complements of DMC Houston. Thanks DMCH for donating all this great stuff for our event.
We would like to take a moment to thank all of the vendors who support the DMA. Without their help we wouldn't be able to offer our members so many perks. DMC Houston, John Hervey, and Ken Koncelik: THANK YOU ALL! Your generous donations to our club's 2006 Fall Tour are appreciated and brought much joy to our members.
With all of the donated items we had, we raffled everything from parts, to logo wear, to free registration to DCS 2008 and DMCH Open House 2007 were presented to the lucky winners of the raffle. Again... THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!
James Espey from DMCH was our first guest speaker for dinner. James was kind enough to speak about some new products and services being offered by DMC Houston, as well as the opening of their newest shop in the Mid-West being run by Dave Swingle. Dave was slated to be at our event, but had to cancel last minute due to a personal emergency.
Ken Koncelik also was in attendance and spoke at dinner about his upcoming 2008 DeLorean Car Show slated to be in Gettysburg. Ken got the crowd excited about the event being "right in your back yard" and is looking for the DMA to help him as much as possible to make it his largest show yet!
Sunday was set to be another eventful day and after dinner it was time to retire for the evening. Some members called it an early night and went to their rooms to catch up on some sleep, while others either went to the indoor pool for a late night swim, or hung out in the hotel's bar and grabbed a few drinks.
Where are the photos from the pool, and the party at the bar? Well... all we can say is that if you want the full effect of a DMA event, you need to attend in person. We just can't capture things like the dancing bartender, the Cheryl laugh attack and other great moments that happen once the photographer is off duty. There was even a historic moment between Marc Levy and James Espey! Those that bore witness will tell you... it was worth attending to see.
After breakfast on Sunday morning, we stopped at the nearby Pocono Candle Factory. This store has twelve huge rooms of candles and candle making facilities for people to browse. While we were there we had the opportunity to see Jarred candles being poured and hand designed candles being dipped in multi-colored waxes and hand carved to make elaborate decorative candles.
The candle shop had a little something for everyone. No matter what your interest was, there was a candle that represented it.
After spending time at the candle factory, the group split into three separate ventures. Several members chose to finish out their day by shopping at the outlet center in Tannersville PA. While the two other groups either went with Evil Dan to BushKill Falls or went to The Crayola Crayon factory with Kevin Abato and Marc Levy.
The Crayola factory located in Easton, PA offers a unique and interesting look into the history of the Crayola company, insight on their manufacturing processes, and countless fun adventures and things to do with the many products that Crayola manufactures for people around the world!
The factory tour was a lot of fun, and had many interesting facts, details, and experiments to offer. People who take the tour get to see how the crayons and markers are made, and play with many of the products that Crayola manufactures. Make sure to bring your creativity and artistic side with you on this whirlwind tour if you take it.
There are so many fun things to do, that we were splitting our seams laughing and having a good time. If you are ever in Easton PA and have a couple of hours to spare, we highly recommend that you stop off and enjoy the tour.
The second DMA group traveled a little farther north into the Delaware Water Gap region on Sunday after the candle factory to see Bushkill Falls. This park also dubbed as "The Niagara Falls of PA" has some wonderful scenery and amazing waterfalls. The park has a series of hiking trails and bridges that traverse the landscape and allow you to get up close to the action.
The DMA members who had the pleasure of walking the trails and taking in all of the natural beauty had their visual senses entertained with raging waterfalls, rapids. and vibrant fall foliage colors.
As always, all good things must eventually come to an end. The DMA Fall Tour 2006 was an amazing event, and all who attended thanked Evil Dan for putting it together.
Don't forget, the year is not over yet! Our upcoming 2006 Holiday Party and 2007 Spring Social are both being planned and should prove to be just as much fun as this fall tour. If you have not yet attended a DMA event, you should make plans to join us soon. We look forward to meeting you and are open to all DeLorean owners and enthusiasts who would like to be members and attend our fun-filled events.