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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 2:32 pm 
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So I thought i'd start another fun thread like this to keep me going until it's our time for MB!

For those who drive, what is your favorite rituals/things to do on the way to Myrtle Beach?

We come from Maryland, and a few years ago we decided when heading down that we'd leave the night before check in and stay about halfway. We always end up staying in Rocky Mount, NC. I love this. It means we get to MB about 10am- lunchtime and gives us that much more time to be there!

Some of my favorites are:
Listening to beach CD's my mom makes before we leave. All songs are beach themed and we loved listening to them!

I also love to listen to George Carlin's books on tape while driving too. He is SO funny!

It's a MUST to stop at South Of The Border and go in the big "Coffee shop" and look at all the junky souveniers! We love to take lots of pictures in the Hat shop!

Last but not least, I HAVE to hit a Bojangles!! Before I had found out I had celiac disease, I always got a egg and cheese sandwhich, but now I still enjoy some hashbrowns!

So what are yours?

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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 2:58 pm 
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If I lived in Maryland, I would drive straight down and be there by lunchtime. I let them know, the bus leaves my house whether wife and kids are on or not no later than 3:30 AM and we are there at dinner time, LOL.

Favorite things about the drive?

    - "Are we there yet?"
    - "I have to pee!"
    - "She's on my side!"
    - "No I'm not, she's on my side!"
    - "She's touching me."
    - "I'm hungry!"

.... and on and on and on and on, LOL.


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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 3:00 pm 
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mrodgers wrote:
If I lived in Maryland, I would drive straight down and be there by lunchtime. I let them know, the bus leaves my house whether wife and kids are on or not no later than 3:30 AM and we are there at dinner time, LOL.

Favorite things about the drive?

    - "Are we there yet?"
    - "I have to pee!"
    - "She's on my side!"
    - "No I'm not, she's on my side!"
    - "She's touching me."
    - "I'm hungry!"

.... and on and on and on and on, LOL.



LOL! Nice! Over the past 3 years we've been travelling with my Nephew who was born in 2010. He has been every year sine he was born. He was 2 months old on his first trip! Anyway, we break up the trip for his sake (well my parents take him) I just split it up because I don't care for the long trip and it makes it more fun (in my opinion) to stop halfway! =)

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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 3:52 pm 
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I'm like mrodgers, get up early and arrive by lunch. We have stopped half way in the past and found it to be more trouble than its worth. My trouble with going half way was the kids always would sleep in the car. A two or three hour nap at 6 o'clock in the evening is never a good thing. The kids would be wired when we arrived at the hotel, so it was always a fight to get them back asleep before midnight. Kind of defeated the purpose of making it a two day trip. Even if they didn't fall asleep, it means that they would spend 7 waking hours in the car over the two days as opposed to them sleeping for three or four of the first hours leaving in the wee hours of the morning. Enough of that. Now to my routine.

The trip down is one of the highlights of my vacation. I love the planning stages of vacations. We have a pretty good system that I'm happy with now, and have used it for the last four or five trips. Car cleanup and packing it all finished day before trip. Cargo carrier loaded the evening before we leave. Don't want to be putting that on at 3 a.m. Kids and wife all take showers the night before, and I usually take a quick one before we pull out to wake me up. Put ice in cooler and load small bags and get everyone in car by 4 a.m. Make one stop in North Carolina (wife always has to pee at same rest area) and one stop in Spartanburg for cheap gas. Kids usually sleep until 9 a.m so first 5 hours are pretty peaceful. Not much traffic at all until about 8 a.m which is another reason to leave early. Arrive in MB to eat lunch and walk around BATB while waiting on the room. Don't have to deal with check-in traffic with the early departure.

We used to leave around midnight and drive down. Would make great time and I really enjoyed it because we would travel in a three or four car convoy. Made it lots of fun. We just got wore out trying to hang out and kill time waiting for room to be ready. Not that hard trying to kill two or three hours, but arriving at 7. A.m and trying to make it to 3 p.m without a room or shower was hard to do.


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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 6:13 pm 
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I know this crazy but one of my favorite things on the way over is Cracker Barrel. I have usually been dieting and starving. I Also love the get to the beach atmosphere. Everyone is always in a good mood. We always talk about past trips. Great fun

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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 7:51 pm 
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Favorite thing about the 11 hour ride the looks the old Caddy gets we we pull in to get gas!

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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 8:04 pm 
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Our trips start out so early in the morning that the ride down is pretty uneventful. We pack a cooler and snacks so no food stops until MB. I guess the highlight of the trip for me (outside of the first gas stop), is the changing of interstates. Each new one is a milestone on the way down. My favorite part is exiting i-20 and heading toward 501. Its the home stretch to the beach. Even though I don't like not having an interstate into MB, knowing I'm not going to make any more turns to get to MB is exciting.


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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 9:20 pm 
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Location: "Southern" New York
We drive down from New York and it's usually around a 12 hour drive...We do not stop except for bathroom breaks/gasoline. We pack our breakfast and lunch and eat dinner when we get to MB.

We have a ritual that we started with my Dad when we first started to drive down back in 1981 that we still carry on till this day.. As we pass the "Welcome To..." signs for each state we honk our horn and roll our windows down and shout "WooHoo" "Yay" etc. We pass through 6 states so this is always a lot of fun! The best is when we finally see the "South Carolina" sign!! We know we are almost home!

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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 9:54 pm 
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Mike, I laughed until I got tears in my eyes. I said said to Wally. "Hark way back and listen to THIS!"

I guess kids never change, "He's touching me." "No, SHE'S touching me! " LOL! Thanks for the memories!

BTW, enjoy them while you can! This time passes way to quickly!

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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 9:57 pm 
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Sun n' Fun wrote:
We drive down from New York and it's usually around a 12 hour drive...We do not stop except for bathroom breaks/gasoline. We pack our breakfast and lunch and eat dinner when we get to MB.

We have a ritual that we started with my Dad when we first started to drive down back in 1981 that we still carry on till this day.. As we pass the "Welcome To..." signs for each state we honk our horn and roll our windows down and shout "WooHoo" "Yay" etc. We pass through 6 states so this is always a lot of fun! The best is when we finally see the "South Carolina" sign!! We know we are almost home!


Nothing like seeing that welcome to South Carolina sign. Since I'm usually the only one awake when we pass the sign on I-26 I'm the only one that gets to see it. I can remember taking trips down when I was a kid. Every year on the way home, my dad would always tell us to breathe out the Tennessee air and breathe in Kentucky air. I actually think we all would do it thinking there was actually a difference in the two. :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 10:36 pm 
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It takes us 2 days for the drive, but we've got a few moments that always bring a smile

When, after EIGHT long hours, we finally see the West Virginia sign that means we FINALLY made it thru Ohio! lol Ohio is one of the worst states to drive thru - there is no "fast" way, no straight 70mph roads (always have towns to go thru or slow down areas), there is construction every year and it just seems to take forever! (Sorry Ohioans, ya'll just need a direct route to WVa!)

The second is our first Sonic stop in Wytheville, VA!! :hello: We don't have Sonic up here, so that's always a great treat!

We make our first night's stop in Mooresville, NC at the Sleep Inn -- get to visit with some friends there, another Sonic stop and maybe do a few NASCAR shops.

Then the next day it's on to Myrtle Beach and when we see Sparky's we know we're close! lol

We always stop at Pedro's Hats Around the World store - but that's our first break on the way back home! :mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 5:45 am 
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The drive TO the beach is as exciting for me as the beach itself. I really just want to get there but if I didn't see some of the normal stuff along the way, it wouldn't feel like vacation to me.

1. Southern XXXposure and the Lion's Den. No matter the time of day, there are ALWAYS trucks in the parking lots.

2. How many freakin signs are there for Tamarack in West Virginia???????

3. Wytheville, VA. Almost exactly halfway. Plus, the cheapest gas until we get to Myrtle.

4. Flying down the 5% grade of I-77 in Virginia heading into North Carolina. Love looking to the left to see Mount Airy. It's so breath taking!!

5. Pilot Mountain is always a welcome sight as it appears out of nowhere sometimes.

6. The traffic nightmare of route 52 heading into Winston-Salem.

7. The statue place on 220 in Rockingham, NC.

Anyway, those are just some of the eye candy I look forward to for my trip. Most of my party entertains themselves or sleeps so I get left alone with my beef jerky, sunflower seeds or whatever I'm munching on. BUT, the rule is that no Bob Marley can be played until we get into South Carolina.

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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 10:36 am 
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Though I can't honestly say I enjoy the long drive, there are certain things that we always look for.

The big green dragon at Thunder Mountain Fireworks in TN always makes me feel like we are at least making progress toward getting there. The building has burned but the dragon still stood last year. I'm hoping he will still be there this year.

We also enjoy the Mimosa trees blooming along the highway (the pink puffy trees.) We have tried to count them before, but you lose count after a while. The first palm tree we see is also a big deal. I have threatened to get out and HUG the first palm tree I see, but so far I have controlled that urge.

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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 11:33 am 
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Janet- Funny! This reminds me of a giant roller skate we always see on our way there. It's outside of an old worn down skating rink

and Emmy- that South Carolina welcome sign sure is beautiful! With the palm trees and all!

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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 11:42 am 
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patrish wrote:
Mike, I laughed until I got tears in my eyes. I said said to Wally. "Hark way back and listen to THIS!"

I guess kids never change, "He's touching me." "No, SHE'S touching me! " LOL! Thanks for the memories!

BTW, enjoy them while you can! This time passes way to quickly!

I have a confession to make. The kids are wonderful in the car! I was being funny up there. In reality, we drove 14 hours to Savannah, GA in 2010 and didn't hear a peep until about a half hour from the Georgia line when the youngest started asking, "When are we going to be in Georgia?" As soon as we hit Georgia, she was happy, we were stopping for the night in Georgia. The next day, 4 hours to Disneyworld was a breeze.

The dual screen DVD player was the ticket. They never fought. 14 hours and then 4 hours and we almost could have forgotten they were with us. A far cry from driving 45 minutes to Walmart here at home where we are ready to leave them on the side of the road. How many times have I looked at my wife just running to the mall or something, press the imaginary button in the console and make a window whirring sound that is our imaginary limo style privacy window going up between the front seats and the back seats, :lol:.

On the way home, we left at 3:30 am and drove straight through. Got home at 10:30 at night. Exhausting! But again, not a peep from the back seat. 19 hours and they didn't even turn the DVD player on! They also don't sleep when we are driving on vacation. That is 19 continuous waking hours of riding without fighting, bickering, or drama. It is something truely amazing.

micountrygal wrote:
It takes us 2 days for the drive, but we've got a few moments that always bring a smile

When, after EIGHT long hours, we finally see the West Virginia sign that means we FINALLY made it thru Ohio! lol Ohio is one of the worst states to drive thru - there is no "fast" way, no straight 70mph roads (always have towns to go thru or slow down areas), there is construction every year and it just seems to take forever! (Sorry Ohioans, ya'll just need a direct route to WVa!)

The second is our first Sonic stop in Wytheville, VA!! :hello: We don't have Sonic up here, so that's always a great treat!

Looks to me from your user name and 8 hours to West Virginia that you are around Ann Harbor or Jackson area. We are hitting Wytheville at around the halfway mark, 6 hours. Coming from Pa though, we don't hit Ohio. I live on I-80 just about, so any drive when I'm going west through Ohio is always I-80 which isn't bad. Looking at Googlemaps, looks like I would guess a short jaunt on I-75, but yeah, a long run down to I-77 on little roads for you.


What our favorite thing on the drive is? We hit the mountains of West Virginia just after sun up. The fog is in the valleys, the golden sun is low in the sky, the road is still shadowed but the valleys are all lit up with sunlight reflecting off the fog. Absolutely beautiful.

Conversely, on the way home, West Virginia is at the tail end of the trip. If you have never driven I-79 and the West Virginia turnpike, let me tell you, it is exhausting. You drive for hours never having the steering wheel straight. It is non-stop back and forth up the mountains, down the mountains for several hours. It's fine on the way down, exhausting after 8 or so hours of already driving on the way home.

2011 coming home from Myrtle I filled up the tank on the way home before I entered Virginia where the mountains start. When I reached the peak of the mountains, I had to fill up again. Down the other side and as I got into Pennsylvania, another fill. Funny how it works out. I averaged 22 mpg on the highway through the whole trip. But upon filling up at the peak of the mountains, I got 17 mpg. Filling up after running down the other side of the mountains, I hit 27 mpg. Average? right there at the rest of the trip of 22 mpg.


The other best part of the drive is stopping for breakfast. I have to stop for breakfast, I'm on vacation. We stopped on the way down last time to sit down for lunch and I don't think I'm going to take the time to do that this time, but breakfast is a must. Someone mentioned Cracker Barrel. We love Cracker Barrel about an hour west of us in Ohio and go there often. I'd love to stop at Cracker Barrel, but there seems only to be 1 in West Virginia of which will be way too early in the trip.


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