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June 14th Edition

In This Issue:

Riding BE-cause ~ Charitable & Educational Events in the Carolinas

Lil' Weather

Free Thinking with FancyFree

Free Ride! - places and events to ride to

Your Myrtle Beach Discount Card

Bub - The CPR's take a "Shortcut" to West Virginny

Loose Talk with Jon

CLICK BELOW to buy your money-saving "Carolina Rider" discount card for Myrtle Beach businesses!

CLICK ABOVE to buy your money-saving "Carolina Rider" discount card for Myrtle Beach businesses!




The Little Weather Quickie for the Greater Charlotte Area

for Week of June 15-21, 2016

Wednesday 89h & 80% t-storms, Thursday 95h & sunny, Friday 87h & sunny, Saturday 81h & p-cloudy, Sunday 83h & p-cloudy, Monday 88h & sunny, Tuesday 96h & sunny (as per on 6/14/16)

HOG Groups Get out There!

In last week's edition of The Carolina Rider Weekly Magazine, Ron mentions (in his column on the Antebellum Trail,) that he ran into a group of HOG members who were riding to historical places as part of their group activities and individual challenges. He was impressed that they rode together and had some organized ways of getting folks to get out there and ride. Truth is, HOG groups by-and-large are into activities BIG TIME. Of course, not all members participate but there are a lot who do. While not all riders are into organized riding or joining up with others, groups like HOG (Harley Owners Groups,) do fill a need and they certainly do offer a lot of things to do as well as giving back to their communities.

In our Riding BE-cause section above, there's a flyer for a HOG-sponsored annual poker run; this one to benefit the Humane Society of Charlotte. Yay for that! As a devoted mushy-hearted animal lover who'd take them all in if I had the space, funds, and sanity, I'm all for that and happy that The Carolina Rider is a marketing sponsor of the event.

Whether you ride a Harley or not, check out a riding group of some kind if you're looking for inspiration and ideas as well as friendship. In addition to HOG, there's Star Riders and, .... well, TONS more but I'm not an expert in what groups are out there.

If you are, please give me a shout and help us get the word out about what is out there.

Group involvement not your cup of tea? As our Orangeburg Ron says, Just Ride!

Happy Flag Day!

In honor of this day, here's one of my favorite experts on flags ... Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory!

(click on image above to play video)


I'm on Facebook ... "friend me!"

Create your own Tasting Tour - SC has a phone app for breweries, distilleries, wineries you can visit

While we can't locate such an app for NC, here're some other resources:

NC Distilleries, NC Wineries, NC Wine, NC Craft Beer

Create your own Animal-oriented Tour - places to enjoy nature/animals along the SC coast

Sea Turtle Night Walks - Edisto Beach State Park - every Tues, Th, and Sat nights in June & July

SC Ag+Art Tour - every weekend in June - Sat 9-5, Sun 1-5

Brevard Music Festival - Brevard, NC - June thru August

46th Annual Ridge Peach Festival - Trenton, SC - June 18

History Alive Festival - Greenville, SC - June 17-26

7th Annual Brew Bern Beer & Wine Festival - New Bern, NC - June 25

NC Zoo Grooves Concert - Asheboro, NC - June 25

Aviation Expo - Greenwood, SC - June 25

Avery County Wine & Beer Festival - Linville Falls, NC - June 25

Annual Lumbee Homecoming - Pembroke, NC - June 25 - July 2

Christmas in July Festival - West Jefferson, NC - July 2

SC Festival of Discovery - Greenwood, SC - July 7-10

SC Peach Festival - Gaffney, SC - July 7-17


During the cold and wetness of the winter months, the CPRs talked about a getaway in the Spring.  We had used Charley's daughter's cabin last fall and it is available to us any weekday.  Located 20 miles or so north of Boone, NC, it is in the epicenter of a plethora of cycle roads and within striking distance of good places to eat.  Our plan was to spend a couple of nights there in early May, but you know how plans go - early May was cold and wet.  But we kept our bags packed and bikes fueled and mid-May was forecast to be rain free and fairly warm [as was the forecast for early May.] Surprise!, the forecast was right...

Early Monday the 23rd of May, Mickey and I left Gaffney for Lincolnton to meet Charley and John at Zipper's Restaurant. After breakfast we paired our intercoms and I explained the route I'd planned for our day.  My route was "only" 100 miles or so longer than the direct route, but was much more scenic.  We rode 280-some miles on smooth asphalt, rough asphalt, no asphalt [aka dirt.] 4-lane, 2-lane, 1-lane with 2-way traffic and once a farm lane [one of the many times we were lost.] Arrived at the cabin late afternoon, unpacked and went into Boone for dinner.  It was cool that evening so we built a fire in the fireplace and talked over the day's ride and where we were headed tomorrow.  Then early to bed, but I had a hard time getting to sleep ... I tossed and turned for about 10 or 15 seconds!

The sun has barely peeked over the horizon and Mickey is urging us to get out of the sack. Groan ... OK, OK, I’m up - maybe! We get ourselves together and ride into Boone for breakfast at Cracker Barrel.  John has loaded the route to WV in his gps too, which is good since my gps seems to think that it’s mounted in an airplane and makes straight lines from waypoint to waypoint!  I’ve learned it is impossible to follow a route in mountainous country with displays like that.  We talk about our destination in WV and, at this point, I have to tell you that one of the CPRs has turned to the dark side. Yes, it’s true, our good friend and navigator has turned. Last month he purchased a .... it’s even hard to write it ... a ... a ... a ... ugh ... 4-wheel ATV!  There, I said it.

Several of his buddies in Lincolnton have them and convinced him to get one.  He bought a Polaris side-by-side and trailer.  At least he can use the trailer to haul a disabled bike!  Anyway, he and the buddies went to this ATV camp in WV ran by Wild Willy in McDowell, WV.  Charley told us that he really enjoyed running the trails up there but he also noticed that the roads were very good for our kind of riding.  So we’re gonna go check it out.  The direct route by gps is 152 miles and takes about 3 and 1/2 hours, my short cut route is 150 miles ... and you’re thinking, “He finally made an actual short cut.“ Well, yes, but my route does not use 4-lane roads, few state roads, mainly county and township roads and estimated time to travel is 5 hours.  A so much prettier ride too, no trucks (well, no big trucks anyway,) mostly empty roads except  four crazy old coots blasting chickens and dogs out of the way, grinning and laughing as they wind their way through the hills.

Charley wanted us to stop for lunch at the little village of Bramwell, WV.  It was a lunch stop when he rode his ATV here. It was a short detour from our route but worth it.  Like most of WV, Bramwell is a struggling little town with closed up coal mines, but the residents decided to pick themselves up and make something of their town.  They strongly advertise to the ATV market which is big stuff there.  For $50 you can tag your off-roader to ride on the roads around the camps and off-road trails. Bramwell has lodging, restaurants, a trail head and rentals.  The town has restored the old homes and businesses that line main street.  The old bank is being made into a first class eating place where you can dine in the vault.  A bridge had to be replaced on main street, so instead of just a concrete modern bridge the town came up with a little extra cash and are having it rebuilt as a 1930s steel bridge.  Just an example of how serious they are about their town.  Where we ate is called The Eatery, no mistaking what is going on there!  They have a good menu including a John Wayne burger, which Charley said he could not eat it all.  We ordered the next lowest burger except for Mickey - he wanted the big un!  The order came out and our cute little waitress had penciled in that we all wanted the John Wayne. Opps, well. we said we would try. Mickey didn’t try - He put it away!!  Charley, John and I couldn’t do it, ... me mainly 'cause I wanted some ice cream after lunch.  Did I tell you about the Cherry Berry Sundae Cracker Barrel has? [next time!]  After lunch we walked around the town and the refurbished train station which is now the town museum. The towns people would stop and tell you about the homes and such. A nice visit.

We continued on to McDowell, a spot on the road where there are several ATV camps among which is Wild Willy's which was our destination.  Charley said he was a real character (and for a character such as Charley to say someone is a character is something.)  Darn, Wild Willy wasn’t home, so we talked with his wife, bought a T-shirt and headed back for North Carolina.

U-turn King

We had a different route to go back and there were several places we had to U-turn. Imagine that!!!  My fellow CPRs have bestowed on me the title of “U-turn King.”  I do that so we can explore new places!!

As we got closer to the cabin, my gps would not go where we wanted to go. (Imagine that little device trying to tell the CPRs where to go!!!)  John said he’d take us so we let him lead. Wow, talk about some roads!!  John got us there but even Charley couldn’t tell we were close until we got there.


Here are a couple videos from this ride ...

VIDEO 1: "Shortcut" to the Cabin .... and VIDEO 2: A Beautiful Road coming into NC

West Virginia is a good place to visit and the people there appreciate their visitors. GO!

And, remember ATGATT,

Bub, aka U-Turn King

Smoke Out!

It's this weekend. The hot-as-fire, crazy-goings-on, funky-bike-lovin-folks motorcycle rally. THIS YEAR, we're making sure not to run out of propane since last year we had to leave early or roast in the 100-degree heat since our a/c went down once the tank was empty. THIS YEAR we're packing in the ice-cold water bottles to sell since last year they were a bigger hit than the painted lady contest (well, almost.) THIS YEAR we have no idea who might be joining us from The Carolina Rider Weekly Magazine writers team but we're gonna be missing that crazy twosome who joined us last year, Lester and The Tarheel Tornado. THIS YEAR we'll make sure The Carolina Rider Drift Trike (aka "Slide,") is gassed-up since last year it had only one tiny lap in its tank and didn't make it out much. And THIS YEAR Paul and Caroline will be back to help out at The BIG RIDE 2 along with our very own painted lady from last year and a newbie to Smoke Out, Gail (who's not gonna be a painted lady but we're pretty sure she's gonna have her mind blown at this rally.)

If you're not sure whether to go or not, we suggest you at least go to one Smoke Out in your lifetime and why not now? If you need inspiration, here are some scenes from last year's Smoke Out at the Rockingham Dragway ...

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The Carolina Rider Weekly Magazine

2764 Pleasant Rd, PMB 4100

Fort Mill, SC 29708