Laura Baker (19643)
Florida Manatees – President
Exciting news! We are going to revitalize our Adopt-a-Manatee program with SaveTheManatees.org. In the near future you will see a survey asking you to vote for one or more Manatees that we can adopt and support. Our chapter has participated in this initiative in the past, and at our Fall rally many members supported getting involved again. Stay tuned for more information as we look forward to our November Rally and Manatee Appreciation Month!
In March, the Manatees joined with other Florida Chapters to sponsor a Newmar Owners Luncheon at Mount Olive Shores North (MOSN) in Polk City, Florida. More than half of the 100 attendees were Newmar Owners who are residents of MOSN. The rest were snowbirds and other Newmar Owners from around the State. Great food, great prizes from our sponsors, fun and fellowship. Thanks to the Sea Turtles and the Fulltimers for their support and participation!
The Manatees gathered in March at Island Oaks RV Resort in Glen St. Mary, near Jacksonville, Florida. Our Rally Hosts, Karen & Steve Burnette, were amazing. How do you hold a rally with no dedicated facilities, you ask? Move numerous picnic tables to the extra site the resort provided and get creative.
We kicked off the rally Thursday night with awesome music by Hunter Merritt – a repeat engagement with the Manatees. This active serviceman had also wowed us with his music at the November 2021 rally. Pizza in the resort’s breezeway, sponsored by Campers Inn RV – Jacksonville, accompanied Hunter’s music.
On Friday morning we gathered for a great breakfast whipped up by Karen & Steve and helping hands. Lots of variety; if you went away hungry it was your own fault. After breakfast, we split for roundtable discussions: the guys focused on technical and service items (and no it did not quickly devolve into a sports discussion); the ladies talked storage ideas, tips & tricks.
We gathered at nearby Chido Mexican Grill for a late lunch — really good Mexican food, sponsored by Independence RV… Manatee thanks! No rally day is complete without a yummy dessert magically created by Karen, using of all thing’s crockpots, to make “Dump Cake”. Delicious, and easy to make according to Karen. Ask her for the recipe. It will astound you.
Did someone say the best pancakes ever? Saturday morning Steve and helpers made pancakes to order. Anne Kuhns on guitar and Rich Schlieper on accordion surprised us over there by playing fun Irish music as they “practiced” for an upcoming St. Patrick’s Day gig. We wrapped up the rally with a tasty pay-your-own-way dinner at Crystal River Seafood. Good food is a hallmark of Manatee rallies. Everyone had a great time and parted ways with a few extra pounds. Hope to see you at the next Manatee rally in November!
And finally, many of our Manatees attended the Florida State Rally in Margaritaville RV Resort, Auburndale, Florida in April. Margie & Greg Harrop and their team treated us to a lovely “laid back” rally where we had a chance to play games, eat and welcome new members to the Florida Manatees. We played mini-golf, corn-hole, Farkle, and a few other games. Several of us got together and learned how to make Quilts of Valor Blocks for the Newmar Challenge. And many just relaxed and got to know other NKK members. “Manatee Thanks” to Greg & Margie!
Our next rally is planned for November 5-8, at the St. Augustine RV Resort, 426 Resort Way, St. Augustine, FL 32084. For reservations call the park at 904-824-9840 and identify yourself with the Newmar Florida Manatees Rally. St. Augustine is a great city with lots to do. For details check out the Visitor Center and register TODAY! The deadline for our reserved sites at the Rally rate is August 31, 2023, so act NOW!
Stay connected with your fellow Florida Manatees at Newmar Florida Manatees of Facebook page. You can also order the new Manatee shirts on our Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/1587746014862204/. We can be reached at email@example.com Cell: 610-747-6966.