Monthly Archives: May 2010

ACA Rally – Day 3

Like yesterday, today started out with a breakfast buffet, but with a slightly different menu from yesterday. It’s nice to not have the same thing everyday.

At 9 am the Board of Directors convened the General Member’s Meeting.

ACA Meeting

It was good to hear that although membership had declined in the recent past, it seems to be climbing again. They also talked about changing the rally schedules to make it easier for families to attend.

Then at 10 we had a presentation from Fleetwood American Coach’s National Sales Manager Jason Humphries, who told us that the industry is slowly coming back. He also talked about how new EPA regulations for 2011 are causing a big price jump on some diesel models. Engines made to meet the 2011 rules will cost between $50,000 to $60,000 dollars more than 2010 engines. That’s just the additional cost for the engine!  That means that the 2010 Eagle I showed yesterday that cost $564,000 will now cost over $610,000, or more.  WOW!

However this only applies to engines MADE in 2011, and is not based on the coach model year. So coach manufacturers bought up as many 2010 engines as they could to use in 2011 coaches until they run out. So they’re telling people that if you are thinking about a new 2011 coach, get it now before there are no 2010 engines left.

That may be why they announced that someone else at the Rally had bought an Eagle like the one I mentioned yesterday.

After lunch Jan had craft class where they made fancy beaded bookmarks. Very nice.

Heading back to our coach I took a picture of our Doppleganger, about 3 spaces away. Here it is,


and here we are.

The only real difference is that they have a satellite dome on top and we have an open dish.

Doppleganger 2

They also have two cats just like we do.

Then later, about 5:15 we headed back over to Energy Hall for the BBQ dinner.

Energy Hall

Once again the meal was top-notch. And this time we had wine with our meal.

After dinner, we had entertainment. His name was Joe Miller and he’s from Deadwood, SD. He looks a lot like Kenny Rogers, and he did a great tribute performance covering Roy Orbison, Marty Robbins, and Elvis. And he was very good, very entertaining.

By 8pm we were back in the coach and getting out the electric floor heaters. It’s supposed to be in the mid 30’s tonight.

Well, al least it’s not snow…not yet, anyway.

More later…

ACA Rally – Day 2…

Today started off with a very nice breakfast buffet at the Energy Hall. We’ve really been surprised by the quality of the food we’ve been served here. It’s been great!

After breakfast we came back to the rig for a couple of hours. Because the ground where we’re parked is soft, I wasn’t able to level our coach when we parked because the leveler pads just sank into the ground instead of raising the coach. This left our coach with a distinct downhill tilt.

So I wanted to raise the levelers and then put some boards or pads underneath and then try to relevel.

To do this I had to start the engine. What was funny was that Emma heard the engine start and immediately ran to Jan’s chair and assumed her travel position. She looked disappointed that we didn’t go anywhere.

Now that we’re level again, going to the back of the coach isn’t like walking uphill.

Anyway, about 11:15 we headed back over to the Energy Hall for the men and ladies luncheons.

The ladies’ luncheon was held at the Prime Rib Restaurant that has also been catering our meals here at our Rally.  They were taken to the restaurant by bus. And after the lunch the women’s group had a fashion show.

The men’s lunch was burgers and brats, both good, and afterwards we had a talk by a county commissioner talking about the mineral wealth of the Campbell County area. Besides being one of the largest coal-producing areas in the country, they also have immense oil and gas deposits, and if that’s not enough, they are a a large producer of uranium. Talk about your energy monopoly.

Then at 1:00 we had a seminar panel with representative from Spartan Chassis talking with us about maintenance, troubleshooting, and repair of our chassis and chassis systems.

After that I walked over to the new American Coaches they have on display in the hall.

ACA Energy Hall

Jan and I both agreed that out of the 3 coaches, we like the new Eagle the best. These have 4 slides and are 42 to 45 feet long, as compared to our Beauty’s 40 feet.

And the inside shows it.

Eagle Living Room

These units are really beautiful and it would be nice to have one. But the list price on this unit is $564,000, so we’ll probably have to wait for our Powerball/MegaMillions win before we get one.

On 2nd thought that price makes us really happy with our paid-for Eagle.

BTW the word is that someone bought this new Eagle yesterday.

About 2:30 we headed back to coach to wait and hear from a friend of ours who was passing through Gillette on her way back to Billings.

Linda and her son Aaron showed up about 3:15 and we had a good visit with them. We hadn’t seen Linda since we were in Billings two years ago on our way back from Alaska.

Later in the afternoon, the partying started. And believe me, these people are serious about their partying. Several travel with their own Margarita machines!

ACA 1 


Tonight was an open night so about 6 pm we drove into Gillette for dinner at Las Margaritas Mexican Restaurant.  And it was very good, especially for northeastern Wyoming!

Tomorrow night, we have a BBQ dinner, and then on Sunday, we have a Prime Rib dinner.


More tomorrow…