May-June Events

It’s finally here, ladies and gentlemen… the first MIJC cruise-in of 2017.  Join us at Our Inn Place in Pekin Saturday, May 6th at 6pm for a bite to eat, a scenic tour of the back alleys of Pekin, and ice cream.  Later in the month on Memorial Day Weekend is a trip to MIJC member Duke Winch‘s place in southern Illinois.  We don’t post the location publicly, so if you’ve not been there before, ask for directions.  The trip will be 50% wheeling and 50% trail cleanup, something that’s necessary every spring to keep the trails navigable.  Watch the forum for travel arrangements.

If you’d prefer something more local, come for the Louie Louie Parade in downtown Peoria.  This short parade, which has been hacking off downtown commuters for years, kicks off at 4:30.  The proceeds benefit St. Jude and the club has already donated $200.  Come to the Civic Center Fulton Lot (enter at the corner of Fulton and Monroe) no later than 4pm; earlier if you want to sit and socialize for a bit.  The gatekeepers will tell you where to line up in the lot but we’re usually off to the left, towards the back of the lot.  Bring candy for the kids!

June 3rd is our next cruise-in at Sonic in Pekin.  Starting June 10th is the club’s annual Big Trip, a week-long adventure to Moab.  This has been in the planning for months on the forum, so if you’re just hearing about it now you may need to wait until next year.  For those of you not going on The Big Trip, consider the slightly more tame Tremont Turkey Festival Parade on Sunday, June 11th.  This is a parade of considerable length with thousands of attendees… a great place to show off your ride and chuck candy at little kids.  Watch the forum for details on where and when to line up, which will be on one of the side streets in Tremont.  The parade kicks off at 4pm but they start closing off streets well before that.

At the end of June/start of July is the club’s annual trek to Duke Winch’s Off-Road Ranch and Dun Did ‘Er Campground (and No-Good Clothes Shop and Pancake House).  This normally encompasses the 4th of July weekend but this year the calendar is not cooperating with that, as July 4th falls on a Tuesday.  So this is when it is.  The trips to Duke’s can sometimes depend on his sometimes very demanding work schedule, so always check the forum before you head south.

I don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves, so I’ll cut it off there for now and save some for the next post.  You can always check the Schedule page for our complete lineup of club events big and small; there’s also a downloadable 1-page PDF link on that page as well.  Or if you’ve got a free weekend and want to wheel, call an audible and post in the forum.  I’m sure someone will come watch you break yer stuff.

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March-April Events

Spring seems to have sprung a bit early, and that’s good news for Jeeps.  Coming up on March 18th we’ve got a trip to The Badlands in Indiana.  Travel plans are already underway on the forum.  On April 1st (no foolin’) we’ve got our regular club meeting, in our usual spot at the Avanti’s in Pekin at 12:00.  This will be the last indoor meeting for the winter, as we start up our warm-weather cruise-in’s with the May meeting.

In April we’ve got two trips planned, the first being our annual trek to Flat Nasty in Missouri for the long Easter weekend (April 13-16).  Arrival for most is typically sometime on Thursday with 2-3 days of wheeling on tap and lots of food, with departure sometime on Sunday.  The club usually rents a few mobile homes near the park, so please post on the forum if you are going.  The club also kicks in some money for food, so we’ll need to have a good head count on who’s going.  The following weekend (April 22nd) is a day trip to The Cliffs.  Again, as with all MIJC trips, please watch the forum for travel plans.

Don’t forget you can see all our upcoming events on the Schedule page.  Browse the calendar month by month or download a one-page PDF suitable for framing.

Get out and do something in the nice weather!  I guess I should take my own advice.  Don’t judge me!  Parts are on order.

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Inspections coming up… Saturday, March 4

Our annual inspections are the next club event on the schedule… Saturday, March 4 at around 12:30.  This event is hosted by the fine folks at Uftring Jeep in North Pekin, who allow us to squeeze all our Jeeps into their shop so we can put them under the microscope indoors and out of the weather.  Pull around to the shop entrance when you get there.  Their shop closes at 12, so don’t get there too early.  If you’ve never been to inspections before or just haven’t been there in a couple years, take a look at the inspection form to find out what we’re looking at.  It’s difficult to determine all mechanical issues present in a 10-minute look-over, but we do our best to examine common points of failure in Jeeps that are modified from stock and/or wheeled regularly.  We also check for safety equipment and to make sure that your lights all work.

The club provides lunch as well… yet another opportunity to eat a small portion of your annual membership fee.  Please post on the forum if you are coming so we can plan food accordingly.

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Schedule online… and other stuff

Happy New Year!  The 2017 club schedule is now online on the calendar page.  This is an easy way to view all the club events (and a few major holidays to help you get your bearings) in a standard grid-type calendar.  And hey, after at least 5 years of using this calendar software, I finally figured out how to have it start on Sunday instead of Monday.  Ya know, like a NORMAL FREAKING CALENDAR.   So it makes more sense to look at now.  You can also download the calendar as a one-page PDF for printing and fridge-magnetizing, either by using the link right here or anytime on the schedule page, right above the calendar display.

Also, if you got one of Al’s paper schedules at one of the meetings, I did find one typo on it.  The July meeting (a cruise-in to Lou’s in Peoria) was on there for July 7th, which is a Friday.  Our meetings are always on Saturdays, in this case, July 8th.  The electronic versions on the website are corrected; please correct your paper copy if you have one.

On the topic of club events, please make sure you check the forum before making any attendance or travel plans.  Every effort is made to keep the main site and the calendar page up to date, but sometimes things get cancelled because of weather or occasionally because of lack of interest.  Times and even dates can also change.  Those discussions all take place in the forum.  If you don’t have a forum account, go sign up for one!  The “spam code” you need is 7883.  MIJC trivia note: it’s 7883 because my first CJ-7 was a ’78 and my current one is an ’83.  The code isn’t secret, but robots that scour the web looking to post spam on forums like ours can’t figure out how to go look for it.

Looking ahead on the calendar, we’ve got our Annual Banquet coming up on Saturday, January 21st at the American Legion in Pekin.  The festivities start at 6:00.  The deadline for getting your deposit in ($5/person) has passed, but you can plead your case with Jill if you want to come.  The club provides the main course; please bring a side dish or dessert to share.  There is a cash bar for beverages of all kinds.  This is also a good time to renew your membership, if you haven’t already done it.  Nobody wants to pay that $10 penalty fee for re-upping late, as detailed in our bylaws.

On February 4th we’ve got our usual club meeting at Avanti’s in Pekin, with nothing else scheduled for the month.  If you want to do some winter wheeling, post on the forum!

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December-January Upcoming Events

Thanks to everyone who attended the November meeting and participated in the nomination of our new officers: Larry Wilson as vice president, Mike Peters as safety director and Jill Martin as treasurer.  All three will serve two-year terms.  Although these candidates are running unopposed and we’re all sick of election-year hijinks, our bylaws still require us to elect/approve these officers in our December meeting, which is Saturday, December 3 at Avanti’s in Pekin, 12:00.  Also at that meeting, we will be approving Al’s proposed schedule for 2017.  AND, the club will be paying for your lunch, so you’ve got that going for you, which is nice.  So you should come and participate in the MIJC democratic process.  You can also pay for your 2017 membership, which is due by January 31st for all returning members.

Looking ahead, we don’t plan much in the way of wheeling in winter months, but if there’s something you want to throw together for people with tops on their Jeeps and/or working heat, post in the forum.  Our next official event will be the annual banquet in January (tentatively January 21).

Have a great holiday season!

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Also in October…

We’ve got our weenie roast meeting on October 1st, but also a few other events coming up as well.  The weekend of October 8th the club is headed to Potowatomi in Fulton, Missouri.  The club has been going to this park for years and it’s always a good time.  Our annual outing to Duke Winch’s Offroad Park (Steve Vohs‘ house) on October 29th is suddenly hanging in the balance due to Steve’s work commitments, so keep an eye on the forum to see if we are still doing it as we get closer.  Steve, I thought you retired a long time ago!

Looking ahead, our regular meeting for November is on November 5th at noon at our usual spot, Avanti’s in Pekin, and our final scheduled wheeling event for 2016 will be The Badlands on Saturday, November 12th.  What’s fun about The Badlands in November, you say?  Well, it’s not very crowded, so there are fewer ATV’s and bikes buzzing around.  It’s also not hot, or what some of us call a FAT (Frank-Approved Temperature).  It’s no fun if it rains, so let’s hope for a crisp, autumn day.  Watch the forum for travel plans.

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October Meeting Change

As discussed in the forum, the time and location for the October meeting has changed.  We are converting our regular monthly meeting over to a weenie roast at The Martins in Pekin at 4pm on October 1st.  Please bring your own chairs and drinks.  Thanks to Jill and Jon for hosting this event!

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