Friday, October 19, 2018

2018 October RV Rally – Sevierville, TN

As I mentioned in my previous post, we came to River Plantation RV Resort two days early for the Tennessee Travelers Rally and as it turned out, two other coaches also came in a day early and Pat drove up to join us – she had not gone with us to get the coach serviced.

We had planned to have grilled brats (from the Wurst Kitchen of course) with kraut and mashed potatoes and since we had seven sausages, we invited the other early arrivals to join us – I had planned to cook all of the sausages anyway so we just made more potatoes.

Four this meal, I like to dress my potatoes just like the brat with kraut and mustard and some other the others were pleasantly surprised when they tried it.  Sorry but I took no meal shots.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Coach Maintenance and RV Rally

After a month at home doing various fall chores, we got back on the road for a two stop trip.

I get the RV chassis serviced once a year following the Freightliner service recommendation and since it was due for a big five year service which includes transmission and coolant system I decided to take it to the Freightliner Custom Chassis Corp (FCCC) service center in Gaffney, SC.  I figured these folks are likely to do a fine job since they service these chassis all day, every day.

This is the service center with six bays (three on the other side) and the coaches lined up for the day with us in the last shot. 




Our appointment was for 8am on Friday so we drove over to Gaffney on Thursday and pulled into one of their 20 camping sites with 50 amp electric but no water or sewer which was no issue. 

That evening we went to Daddy Joe’s Beach House and Grill for supper where we got large portions of good food and at reasonable $10.95 price.  


I had a combo of chopped BBQ and Calabash Chicken with sides of baked beans and wedge fries along with hush puppies and while I didn’t get a shot my meal looked like this one with chicken in place of the wings.


Bev said she enjoyed her Calabash Chicken and Calabash Shrimp with potato salad and slaw – Calabash Style means lightly breaded but it seemed like a normal amount to me.

After servicing on Friday, the coach was returned to the site and we spent another night before heading to Sevierville, TN on Sat.

The service cost was $1368 + tax with labor to service the chassis and generator being $650 at $100/hr (actually cheaper than taking it to a dealer) and materials account for the rest of the cost (fluids were $438). 

So we are all serviced for a year but unfortunately they found a small oil leak from the engine which we’ll need to attend to when we get home. 

Since we stayed both the night before and after the service, we had an entire day to kill and several hours with no coach, so we opted for a factory tour.  Gaffney is not only home to the service center but also the factory for FCCC, where they assemble chassis for school buses and delivery vans (think UPS) as well as motor homes for several brands - about 50,000 chassis/year.

FCCC is a sub-division of Freightliner which is owned by Daimler, the German company that also owns Mercedes Benz and Smart Car.  The factory uses very modern and highly efficient manufacturing practices to make their high quality products and as an old plant guy I found the tour very interesting and even Bev said she enjoyed it.

Then we drove about 10 miles north to the site of the Revolutionary War Battle Site at Cowpens.  It is a National Battlefield Park requiring no admission.  It is basically just a visitors center and a field with not much in it that I saw and while it was an important battle for the Americans, I don’t quite see the need to spend money on a place that seems to slowly be taken over by trees.



The main reason for scheduling the service appointment when we did was that we would be part way to Gaffney anyway to attend a Tennessee Travelers rally in Sevierville the following week so we just showed up two days early.  The Saturday drive back from Gaffney took us an extra hour due to a four car wreck on I-26 and the heavy traffic from I-40 to Sevierville (Saturday of fall break). 

We checked into River Plantation RV Resort (our forth visit) and were assigned site 122 for two nights – we added the extra days too late to get the same site as for the rally.  I really don’t consider this a resort yet as they have gravel roads and sites and WiFi only in a couple of central locations.

The highlight of the day was getting set up in time to watch the second half of the Tennessee – Auburn game in which UT pulled off an upset and gave first year coach Jeremy Pruitt his first big win.  The low point of the day was watching my WV Mountaineers flounder around in a loss to Iowa State and after watching several previous games I was not at all surprised.

That’s it for now from Sevierville and I'll have more updates about our rally.

Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them and the blue words are links.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.

Larry

10/11-10/13/18 Event Dates

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Naan Bread Pesto Pizza

We had been recently talking about pesto and Bev began looking for recipes that use it and she came up with Pesto Pizza from All Recipes so during a recent Sam’s club visit, she picked up a jar of Member’s Mark Pesto.  We all thought the jarred pesto was very good but care must be taken as it is a little salty.

The four of us each built our individual pizzas selecting from the available toppings and beginning with a generous layer of pesto.


Saturday, September 29, 2018

Sausage & Kraut Flatbread Pizza

I’d seen this pizza made on TV and since I had some really good ingredients on hand, I wanted to give it a try and serve it to sausage fan (ex-Chicago) friends Laurie and Dave.  I decided to use our favorite Lithuanian Sausage (from the Wurst Kitchen)  but wanted to cook it first too make it easier to slice later and be certain it got done on the pizza.  Since I didn’t want it to cook too much, I cooked in Sous-vide in 140-150F water for six hours (this was the temp my stove would hold the water at and in the range I wanted).  Here it is in the vacuum sealed package with a probe thermometer monitoring the water temperature.


Saturday, September 15, 2018

Back Home and Cooking Brats & Stuffed Chop

While in Sycamore, IL, there was a little dive looking place at the end of the road entering the campground that Bev found totally fascinating and insisted we check it out.  It’s somewhat hard to describe so we’ll use their words – “A butcher shop that cooks.”  

All of the meat cooking and smoking is done over charcoal on outside grills and the eating is at picnic tables also located outside.  The inside contains a case full of good looking meat, homemade salads of all kinds (slaw, potato salad, pasta salad, etc), deli meats.  They serve hot and cold sandwiches along with plate meals from the meats they cook. 



Wednesday, September 12, 2018

2018 Summer RV Trip – Days 44-46 – Last Day In Sycamore & Trip Home

Our original plan was to go from Illinois to Ohio Amish Country (Holmes County) then on to West Virginia for an 11 day, two stop rally of our RV club, but when the rally dropped down to just three coaches, we decided to cancel it.  My girls had already been saying they were ready to be home, so we cancelled out Holmes County as well and made plans to head south.

We were due to leave IL on Sunday of Labor Day weekend and not surprisingly, a suitable campground site was not to be found in the area we needed to spend the night so we stayed another day in Sycamore and had no problem getting into the Monday night place we wanted.

So Sunday, we made preparations for departure and watched a Shania Twain concert on TV and all I can say is that she is spectacular and then she starts singing and becomes even more so. J

Monday, September 10, 2018

2018 Summer RV Trip – Day 43 – Historic Roundhouse Restaurant & Sausage

Saturday was our day to visit with the kids and stock up on sausage and at Ann’s suggestion, we met for lunch at Two Brothers Roundhouse in Aurora, IL.  Eric was out of town so it was Ann and Matthew & Sophia who are growing like weeds.

The restaurant is in an old railroad roundhouse and here is an excerpt for Wikipedia – “The Two Brothers Roundhouse, formerly the Walter Payton Roundhouse, America's Historical Roundhouse, and Chicago, Burlington, & Quincy Roundhouse and Locomotive Shop is a historic building converted to a restaurant in Aurora, Illinois. It was originally constructed in 1856 as a roundhouse for the Chicago & Aurora Railroad (later Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad) and served in this capacity until 1974. It was abandoned until 1995, when a group of investors led by Walter Payton purchased it and converted the building to an entertainment complex. Its most recent tenant is Two Brothers Brewing. The building is the oldest limestone roundhouse in the United States and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.”


Two Brothers is a restaurant, brewery, and distillery and it is amazing how they have made use of this fine old building which is made of stone and wood – huge beams can be seen supporting the roof on the inside.









Then the outside area where the turntable was located is set up for events.



Our lunches were burgers, wings, stuffed poblano, and a reuben and they were all just warm by the time we got them so the food gets a C but the location was a winner.




From there, we headed over to The Wurst Kitchen to stock up on some great sausages to take home – we bought at least 30lbs of frozen ones and the RV freezer was completely full.




Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them and the blue words are links.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.

Larry

9/01/18 Event Date