Saturday morning, November 10th, saw union members of IBEW local 481 braving brutally cold temperatures and wind to install the long strands of LED lights on the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in the center of downtown Indianapolis. This is the traditional start of the Circle of Lights celebration.
Working hard to get the lights up
Putting on the finishing touches
This year the lights will be turned on on November 23rd. One lucky kid will be picked to flip the switch and turn on the lights! (The contest is going on right now: a coloring contest.) 2018 will be the 56th year of this beloved Indy tradition. The lights come on at 7:30 that evening after a delightful variety show with local talent. Oh, and a huge fireworks show will follow the festivities.
All the strands are up
Close up of the top
If you have any plans for any kind of camping and plan on staying at commercial parks and campgrounds, you owe it to yourself to invest in a membership in Passport America. This discount club offers half price camping at over 1900 campgrounds across the US, Canada and Mexico. The yearly fee is only $44.00, and if you join through our member number, C-647737 thru January 2018 you will get 6 months free membership.
Some of the features that come with membership:
All new International Camping Directory with nearly 1,900 RV Parks and Campgrounds
Personalized embossed 50% discount camping card
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A friendly and professional staff who is always happy to serve you!
A welcome sign to see at your next campground!
This is a no-brainer, folks. You will pay for the membership after a couple of nights of 50% off camping fees! On our way from Indiana to Texas we have saved $30 in camping fees and stayed at nice RV parks with WiFi and full hook ups. Remember to join with our referral number C-647737 before the end of January 2018 to get 6 months free membership! Go to the Passport America website for information and to join! You’ll be glad you did.
Update: Today we took the “car” detour for I-75 that is still closed due to a huge rockslide. This detour followed road 297 that s runs roughly parallel to I-75. Wow. What a lousy road to become a detour for a major interstate. This road is narrow, windy and goes over at least tow pretty high mountains. At best we could travel at 45 mph (which is the posted speed limit). Lots of the time 25 mph was the maximum safe speed.
Large RV’s and towed travel trailers should take the truck route. Our 24′ Class C handled the road ok, but it was a bit of white knuckle driving.
Well, at least it was a surprise for us. We left Indiana on our way to Pigeon Forge and Sevierville, Tennessee. About 50 miles into Kentucky on I-75 we saw one of those big information signs that hang over the highway. There was quite a bit of writing on the sign, but traffic was busy and all I could catch was I-75 closed. It seems that there was a huge rockslide on February 27th that closed the entire interstate in both directions. I guess if you don’t live in Kentucky or Tennessee you don’t get the news.
Closer to the border the road side signs spelled out more details. Trucks must get off at Exit 29 in Kentucky. Cars must get off at Exit 160 just inside the Tennessee State line.
OK, we are in an RV. We’re not a truck, we’re not a car. Do the trucks have one route due to width or height restrictions? Road /bridge weight limits? Guess we’ll find out in the morning. We are taking the car exit. Stay tuned…
It was time to head to Arizona for some warm weather. Sher and I hit the road a few days before New Year’s Day. Fast forward a couple of days and we stopped at a casino in Mississippi south of Memphis.
As the weather was above freezing it was time to “de-winterize” the RV. You know the drill: put some water in the fresh water tank and run the water through until all that pink anti-freeze is flushed out of the lines.
I turned the hot water heater on but we could only get a bit of luke warm water. Rats! That’s all we needed, a problem with the hot water heater. Electric or LP neither provided anything but lukewarm at best water temperature.
By the time we got to Tucson Sher and I were both getting a little tired of luke warm water. A couple of days after we settled in at the Whispering Palms RV Park we went to an RV service center to see about the hot water heater. The service manager opened the access door on the outside. He then came inside and took the access panel off revealing the lines and valves.
He looked up at me and then glanced at Sher with a big grin on his face. He then reached down and opened the valve that allows the hot water to flow. Yep, I had the valve closed. He was polite and did not laugh out loud. Sher, however, did. I deserved it.
At least I could wash the egg off my face with hot water.
Cummings Crosspoint technician checking our Onan generator
Recently Sher and I set up at a large two day festival in Atlanta, Indiana. During our first night our generator coughed a couple of times and then stopped runnning. There was plenty of gasoline, and repeated tries resulted in the strong odor of gas. Sure sounded like the engine was flooded.
Since the generator is still under warranty the Indianapolis (Greenwood) Camping World refered me to the Cummins Crosspoint Service Center in downtown Indy. The CW techs are not certified to do Onan warranty work.
The Cummins Crosspoint service center was very helpful. Once I explained that we are full time RV the staff really went out their way to help and arranged for us to take our RV in for a look see and diagnosis that day..
It turned out that there was a problem with one small part the helps hold a valve spring in place. New parts are ordered. We will just have to do without the genny until they come in.
We went back to MattressInsider.com when we wanted to replace the mattress that came with our Thor Four Winds 22E motorhome. This Class C motorhome was the replacement for the travel trailer that we had when we hit the road last summer. The mattress we bought from MattressInsider for the travel trailer did not fit in our new Thor. As is normally the case, the mattress that came with the RV was, ah, not the best. Even though it was called an RV Premium mattress it did not take too long for it to break down and become nothing more than a source of bad night’s sleep and backaches.
Our new mattress in place and ready!
So back to MattressInsider. Once again the folks there were great to work with. This time I needed a custom made mattress to fit the shape of our bed: the corner of it was “cut off” to make room for the bathroom door to open. Simple to draw a sketch with the dimensions and email it to the MattressInsider staff.
Once agan we ordered an 8″ thick coil spring mattress. (See our original review of our first mattress here.) The additional cost for the custom design was only $20 for the one we ordered. This was a nice surprise as I expected a higher cost for a custom made mattress.
This is the style mattress that we purchased
The sales staff once again did a great job with our order. I sent in the sketch with the dimensions of the mattress I needed, firmed up the order and our mattress arrived in about ten days. Great service! The mattress was rolled up into a box about the size of a thirty gallon barrel that weighed in at 68 lbs. (Shipping was free by the way.) We simply unpacked the mattress, let it unroll and let it do its expanding thing for about three hours. Then it was ready for use.
Let me tell you, these coil spring mattresses are great to sleep on! Back aches are gone and Sher and I both are getting a great night’s sleep. Need a new mattress for your RV? Browse the Mattress Insider website and/or call them at 1-888-488-1468 and talk with them. You will not be disappointed with what you hear.
We are back from our time in Florida. Well we came back to Indiana and Ohio to visit with family, and kind of jumped the gun by about a week as we hit a week of near zero temperatures. But it is nice see the family again, and it looks like the really cold times are soon to be a memory for this year.
Winterized, at least for a couple of weeks!
Just when you think you have seen everything, here comes a self propelled two seater bathtub.
Yes, this is a motorized bath tub.
Today was an uneventful and quiet day. It started out cold, though. The overnite low was 36, and it was chilly this morning. A jacket was the required article of clothing until about mid-morning. We just talked with our fellow vendors throughout the day.
Warning! Or a joke?
The sign next to a nearby pond is rather ominous. The pond is about 20 yards from our spot. One of the vendors here told me that if there are no birds on a pond it is a good sign there will be ‘gators in the pond. I guess ‘gators like to eat birds that land on the surface. Hmmmm. We have seen no birds land on the pond or the banks of the pond…
Happy Valentines Day!