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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 7:29 am 
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Last night's meet-up was just another Family Reunion....yawn. OK, seriously. If you are reading this, and you have never participated in a message board meet-up you MUST attend one (or set one up yourself if one is not already scheduled) when you are here on vacation.

We met at 7 PM at Auntie Anne's at Broadway at the Beach. Katie and Brett were here with Noelle and Kylie, after 98 hours on the road from their return trip from Ohio. I exaggerate a tad about the time, but I know it was not easy for them to attend the meetup tonight. But here was Katie, looking beautiful and refreshed and seeming happy to be back at yet another meetup! (See photo below.) I just love Brett. When he sees me coming I know he mentally rolls his eyes, wondering what complaint I might have about HTC. Tonight he patiently answered all my questions about why our subdivision (SouthWood) is covered with 23,860 (I counted) tiny orange flags with matching wide orange sketch marker lines, placed there by HTC.

I was looking forward to seeing Vicki (Miz Kitty) her husband Kay and their grandson Aaron again. I learned that Vicki and Kay will be moving here soon. ( I won't steal their thunder by telling you about their new home.) When they return to Ohio after this trip, they will put their home on sale, and it won't be long until we can claim the conversion of a couple more Yankees to the land of Grits. Hooray! (Practice saying Y'ALL, Vicki and Kay!)

Deanna, her son, and husband Doug attended their first meetup tonight. It was wonderful to finally meet them! Deanna has been coming to Myrtle Beach for over 30 years - in other words, since she was a child. Deanna and Doug are from TN, and I understand that Deanna, Jeff (parrotheadjwb) and Lorraine spoke to each other in the Tennesseean, a dialect so foreign to everyone, that no one knew what they said to each other. Deanna, thanks for making the effort to come to a meeup. It was wonderful to meet you at last.

Caryn joined our message board last April. She and her husband Jeff and have two daughters and a brand-new son-in-law. They are renting a house in Ocean Lakes for the second year in a row. Jeff and Catyn have lived in Virginia, Alaska, Indiana , California, Illinois, North Carolina and Oklahoma, and Jeff served in the Gulf War. I am sorry I did not have more time to talk with them tonight, but hopefully they will be able to attend future meetups. Or who knows? Maybe their next home will be Myrtle Beach!

Ron (Myrtlebeachbum) and Mary were there, of course, with son Ryan and daughter Brittany. Ron coordinated this meet-up and a huge number of members responded! I've been telling Brittany for the several years that if she ever decides things at home are not going as well as she expects to give Wally or I a call on our cell phones and we will see that she is well cared for in Myrtle Beach. Many of you know Ron as one of our Moderators, and it's always a pleasure to see his family.

Alan (pop2748) and his wife Ruann were at the meetup tonight. It was fun seeing them again. Many of you know and appreciate Alan's sense of humor which comes across in his posts on the board. I'm sorry I did not have more time to spend with them, but they feel like extended family members now, and I look forward to many more meetups with them.

Jeff and Lorraine were their with their perfect son Nich. This is simply a wonderful family that each and every one of you would love to call your friends. Any time I see Jeff and Lorraine, I just have to smile and think how blessed the message board is to have them as members.

Colleen (Beachxcape) and Brian also showed up tonight. What can I say about this couple who now call the Grand Strand home? We are very fortunate that they chose our area to relocate, and our lives are enriched because of them. We love your new home and look forward to many happy times together.

Cathy and Rich from PA each have their own identity and avatar on the board. Cathy is Cathy, and Rich is Shirtman. I never gave much thought to it until this meetup when I realized people "knew their faces" but did not know they were husband and wife. Cathy and Rich have been long-time members and we always look forward to the opportunity of seeing them.

I've been looking forward to seeing Bob (Bob P) and Bonnie again. They are simply fun to be around, and it took some time to get caught up on their lives during the past couple months. Bob and Bonnie retired here just a couple months ago and they are enjoying all the amenities the Grand Strand has to offer. We are lucky that they chose South Carolina for their retirement and we plan to see them again soon.

Last and certainly not least there is Leo. I am ever so grateful to him for his loyalty to the message board and for his friendship.

As you can see, we had a big group at this meetup. Lots of people were taking pictures which I'm sure they will be posting soon, so I'll start this off with these which were taken by Wally:

Kay, me, Bob, Bonnie, Vicki, Aaron
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup1.jpg
Ron, Cathy, Rich, Caryn, Jeff
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup2.jpg
Aaron,Vicki, Jay, Leo (ask about his Xenia cap!), Kay
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup3.jpg
Rich, Caryn, Jeff, me
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup4.jpg
Ruann and Alan with their granddaughter and daughter-in-law
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup5.jpg
Katie (holding Kylie) Mary in the background
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup6.jpg
Standing room only as part of our group chats in front of Auntie Annies
http://www.funbeaches.com/7-9-07/meetup7.jpg

Meetups are very special to me. Sometimes the message board gets frustrating, as Ron (Ichiban, my co-adm) and the Moderators (many of whom were present tonight) will attest. For me, the meetups are like a shot of energy, goodwill and positive karma. Being able to see old friends and make new ones at these gatherings means more to me than you can imagine. I'm sorry I did not have more time to spend with each of you, but hopefully we'll be seeing each other again soon.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 7:44 am 
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What a beautiful report and what beautiful people! I'm so glad I've found this message board :) I, too, have been going to MB since I was a small child (about 44 years ago). I have such wonderful memories of going with my parents and brothers and am now creating wonderful memories with my own family. This message board has helped prepare for the perfect trip :) THANKS to all of you who work so hard to make this great!

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Safari Motor Lodge: As a child, many years ago..
Indigo Inn..again, many years ago...
Firebird Inn on my honeymoon in '84
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 Post subject: Meetup @ Auntie Anne's
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 8:01 am 
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Wow, what great pix! Everyone looks SOOOO happy...hmmm, I wonder why? I almost got tears in my eyes looking at these photos. I'm so schmaltzy. Vicki...you've been holding out on us. Lucky you. The Xenia/Dayton SW Ohio area will miss you! How exciting. Cathy -- you are very photogenic as is Mary and Vicki. The last picture is awesome -- such a crowd. Sounds like everyone had a wonderful time and glad you got your shot of +++Karma, Patrish!

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SeaWatch Resort 2010
Monterey Bay 2007
Dayton House 2005
Crown Reef Resort 1998
Palace Resort 1997
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 11:36 am 
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I can't improve on what Patrish has said so eloquently in her review of last night's meet-up. It was great to see old friends again. As time goes by, the percentage of people who attend these meet-ups begins to skew more toward long-time message board members attending their third and fouth meet-ups and just a bit less toward first timers. Last night's meet-up was huge, though, so we had a lot of both types. And as Patrish said, the new people were your typical message board all-stars.

Deanna, Doug and their family were here from TIN-IS-SEEE. Here's the thing. Deanna is part of a set of twins separated at birth. Her long, lost sister is Julie (TorontoJulie). Hey, you don't believe me? Check out the pictures!

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 6/original
http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 7/original

Her husband, Doug, is having the perfect vacation whereby Deanna lets him go off and golf during the mornings and he spends the afternoon on the beach and the evenings checking out the local dining scene. They were a pleasure to meet. Deanna is every bit the sweetheart she is on the message board and another one whose avatar does not do her justice.

Caryn and Jeff joined us from Indiana (I think). Patrish messed me up with her list of all the states they've lived in and now I'm confused. Jeff looks like your basic American soldier hero -- ramrod straight, socially elegant, and he looks like if I insulted his favorite NASCAR driver, he could rely on his military training to remove my spleen and cook it for dinner with only a thumb tack, a can of sterno, and a spool of fishing line. Caryn was an absolute doll. They held hands for much of the meet-up (yes, I notice these things) and it was clear they have a very special relationship. There was some talk of them moving to Myrtle Beach but I think this tends to happen to everyone who visits here. It's the chemicals we put in the water.

Caryn and Jeff

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 5/original

I met Alan and Ruann for the first time. Alan is from Wally's neck of the woods in West Virginia. Alan in person is just like his persona on the message board -- he's got that look in his eye that tells you he sees the humor in life while enjoying it to the fullest.

Alan and Ruann

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 8/original

Everyone else who was there are people who are all very dear friends of mine and who I've met several times over the years. Some of them spent time together with us leading up to this meet-up at BBQs, mini-golf courses, or very wet beaches in the last 48 hours. I love them all very much.

For some reason I never took a picture of Vicki and Kay and their grandson, Aaron. I have no idea how that happened. Probably because they surprised me with a special Xenia hat and I was overwhelmed that they would even think to do that for me. (If you've been on the board for a long time, you'll understand the Xenia thing. If not, it would take too long to explain here). They are two of the sweetest and most thoughtful people you'll ever meet. Kay and I must have shaken hands at least 4 times over one thing or another. I think we just make stuff up and then congratulate each other over the idea. Vicki and Kay just bubble over with enthusiasm for life. They'll be moving down from Ohio shortly (I'll let them tell the story) so we'll be neighbors soon. Myrtle Beach, which is already a great place to live, will improve dramatically as soon as Vicki and Kay brighten the place as residents.

Cathy and Rich (Shirtman) were down from Pennsylvania. I love these two. They're a walking laugh track. Cathy is constantly on me about going up with her on a parasail excursion. We all know this is less about me and all about Cathy's need to conquer her fear of . . . well, everything. But in this case it's heights. So she promised me she's going up there in the next three days without me to beat her terror into submission. I'm so proud of her. I also told Rich not to sue me if something goes horribly wrong with the tow line and Cathy plummets into the ocean and is eaten by a school of sand sharks.

Seriously, we'll have to keep a close eye on their trip report to see how she made out. I expect all of you to jump in and congratulate Cathy if she goes through with this. Or you can send her get well flowers to the orthopedic wing the Grand Strand Medical Center and tell her that having all those titanium pins holding her broken leg together is kinda cute, actually. Either way, she deserves our kudos for demonstrating true courage.

Cathy and Rich

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 0/original

Brian and Colleen. What can I say about these two, other than they have to be the most photogenic couple on the message board. Actually, Colleen and ANY OTHER GUY would be the most photogenic couple on the message board. Forget appearances, though, I love these two. We've spent a lot of time together this weekend and I can't say enough good things about their giant, good hearts and generous spirits.

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 2/original

Wally and Patrish. Let me repeat exactly what I just said about Brian and Colleen in the above paragraph and assign it to Wally and Patrish because the description fits precisely. You can't improve on perfect.

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 3/original

Finally we have Jeff and Lorraine from Tennessee (yes, I know how to spell it for real), and Ron and Mary from Pennsylvania. I know when you're a parent you're not supposed to have favorites amongst your kids, and in the same way I'm probably not supposed to have favorites with message board members. But if I DID have favorites, and I'm not saying I do, it would be hard to imagine having friends any closer than these two couples and their families.

Charlotte and I had the privilege of having Ron and Mary and their two children, Ryan and Brittany stay with us for a night last Friday. They're like old shoes -- they fit perfectly on us. I love their kids to death and it just seems like no matter how long it's been since we've seen them we just fall right back into synch with them. We won't be truly happy until they all move to Myrtle Beach and become neighbors as well as the close friends they are.

Ryan, Ron, Mary and Brittany

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 8/original

Yes, that's Ron blinking again. For every 4 pictures I take of them Ron's blinking in 3 of them. I think he's fighting back the tears because he knows he has to leave in three days. Here's Ron and Mary without Ron crying like a menopausal woman.

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 6/original

Jeff and Lorraine are the only two people who could actually convince me to move away from Myrtle Beach on the sheer power of their personalities alone. Jeff calls me from Cookeville, TN about every other week to read me his dinner specials at "Cheddars" where he's a manager. Nah, not really. He does call me, but we just talk about life in general because we thoroughly enjoy each other's company and I just like torturing myself by trying to figure out what he's saying in that strange Tennessee dialect. Lorraine is one of the most lovable people I know and has talked me into becoming a co-investor in a scheme she promises me will make millions for us -- Ice House of America. She wants our first franchise to be in Fairbanks, Alaska. I need to sit her down and work out the kinks in her plan but we're having too much fun laughing about it along the way.

Jeff and Lorraine

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 5/original

Here are my two buds together:

http://www.pbase.com/traderboynh/image/ ... 7/original

None of these relationships would exist without message board meet-ups. You may think it's more important to spend time trying to jam in as much "Myrtle Beach" as possible into your week here without having to take time out to put faces with names on an internet forum, and that's certainly your choice. But I know my life would be much poorer had I not decided on that one late afternoon in June of 2004 to take an hour out of our vacation to meet these seemingly too-good-to-be-true people from a message board on the internet. My life took a sharp right hand turn that day and I'm all the richer for it.

So if you're down here on vacation, do yourself a favor. Set up a meet-up or attend the one that's already been scheduled. And also, if you're out on Garden City Beach and your cooler is in need of a recharge, remember -- Ice House of America, Where Being 'Cool' Isn't Just a State of Mind.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 1:01 pm 
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What I want to know is why I don't see anybody eating a pretzel in the picture. Mark my word, if Nathan and I had been there, we would have been tearing some pretzels up! ;-)

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 1:09 pm 
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Betsy wrote:
What I want to know is why I don't see anybody eating a pretzel in the picture. Mark my word, if Nathan and I had been there, we would have been tearing some pretzels up! ;-)


Funny Betsy, I was thinking the exact same thing this morning, but didn't end up posting it!

Looks like everyone had fun AGAIN! :lol: Makes me look forward to Betsy's visit in August! Then I'll get to have a MB fix, before getting there in September (maybe for another meet-up, that's if Leo hasn't run Coldstone Creamery out of business by that time!).

Great pictures Patrish and Leo, by the way, I enjoyed looking at them!


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 3:06 pm 
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Location: Myrtle Beach- Formerly Nashua, NH
I've been dying to post in here all day, but unfortunately work has been crazy busy. I'm pulling away for two seconds to make a few comments. I'll write more later, when I'm not pulling my hair out with work.

A. I applaud Wally for taking actual pictures instead of video of people's feet. I think those expensive photography lessons are starting to pay off. LOL!!!! (just kidding)

B. We would have alot more pictures to look at if Opie would give it up and pay the .20 cents a minute or whatever it is at the hotel to upload his pictures. Someone tell that man to bring his laptop next year. We message boarders are impatient for pictures!! :lol:

C. Betsy and Annie... in regards to the pretzels, my girls had some, but mostly they just wanted to feed the pretzels to the ducks. I should have just brought them the loaf of bread from my cupboard that is starting to mold. The ducks appreciate a good aged bread.

D. It was great to meet Caryn and Jeff last night. I liked Caryn so much. She reminded me alot of my sweet first grade teacher. At one point I had the urge to start singing the alphabet in hopes that she'd give me a gold star.

E. We love this message board so much that we'd rather go to a meetup than stay home and unpack our luggage and catch up on sleep (actually, I would rather do anything than unpack luggage, but that's beside the point). So it was really a joy to get to the meetup, even though we'd just returned from our 98 hour drive home.

F. Wow, I'm making alot of points here... I'm already to the letter F!!

G. Well, it took about 500 meetups, but Noelle has finally figured out that Patrish is her friend. She went running up to Patrish last night to give her a hug. It warms my heart.

H. Ron, when we were in Ohio last week, we saw a restaurant called Ichiban's Japanese Steakhouse. I didn't know such a thing existed, and I nearly went through the roof of the car. I think there was a little bit of shrieking involved, and Brett may need to get his hearing checked now. What that has to do with last night's meetup, I have no idea. But I just had to let you know. :lol:

Ok, I'm getting 2 incoming calls from work, and about 30 new emails in my inbox. Back to the slave pits!! More to come later...

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 7:57 am 
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I'm so jealous - looks like another great meet-up.

Quote:
Deanna is part of a set of twins separated at birth. Her long, lost sister is Julie (TorontoJulie). Hey, you don't believe me? Check out the pictures!


Cool to know I have a long lost twin. I actually have the same shirt and necklace that Deanna is wearing in the picture - so maybe there is a telekinetic twin connection! :clown:

:cool: Julie


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 5:49 pm 
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Location: Loudon, Tennessee
I had such a great time at the meet-up Monday night. I was thrilled to get to meet so many people. It was nice to meet a lot of folks I haven't met. I have been wanting to meet Alan for a long time. I love reading his post and he was just as laid back in person as he is on the board. It was great to finally meet Vicki and Kay and it seems I will probably get to see a lot more of them now that they are moving to Myrtle Beach. I briefly got a chance to talk to Caryn and her husband Jeff. The only thing I don't like about the meet-ups is it is impossible to talk to everyone as much as you would like. I finally got to meet another message board member from Tennessee. It was great to meet Deanna and her husband Doug. We got to talk about Tennessee football(not Ohio State) Go BIG ORANGE! By the way Leo and everyone else who commented on our "Southern accent", the last time I looked at a map, Myrtle Beach was South of the Mason Dixon line so it's actually "ya'll" who have an accent. We talk the way God intended Southerners to talk.
Everyone else at the meet up I had already met. I love these meet ups and thought that Broadway at the Beach is the perfect place to have them. Thanks Ron for putting all this together for us, you're great.

You can look at my pictures from the meet up here
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffandlorrainebennett/sets/72157600779256958/

Just click on view as a slide show and enjoy.

Jeff

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Jeff

2000-Compass Cove
2001-Breakers Resort
2003-Compass Cove
2005-Crown Reef
2006-Dayton House
2007-Wyndham's Ocean Blvd. NMB
2007-Dayton House
2008-Wyndham's Ocean Blvd. \ Dayton House
2009-Dayton House
2011-Dayton House
2012-Wyndham Towers on the Grove
2014-Breakers Resort


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2007 12:10 pm 
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Location: Bruceville, (Southern) Indiana
Jeff and I can't tell you how much we enjoyed meeting every one at the meet-up. It was so hard to get a chance to talk to everyone as much as we would have liked but we thoroughly enjoyed every minute there. I have to admit I was very nervous about the whole thing but then Patrish walked right up and gave both of us a hug and I knew everything would be fine. Thank you, Patrish (and everyone) for making us feel so welcome.

Caryn

P.S. Katie, you definitely earned a gold star. I very much enjoyed meeting you and look forward to seeing you again next year.


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 Post subject: meet up july 9
PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2007 8:27 pm 
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This was our 3rd meetup this time (since 2005) and one of the highlights of the trip.Glad to meet new faces and see the old again. We met Mz Kitty first and her husband Kay and their grandson Aaron. She told us of her plans to move to the beach eventually. First impressions do matter. I could tell these are 2 down to earth, friendly, easy to talk to people.

Next Ron (myrtle beachbum) arrived with his family. We chatted about the torrential downpour that day while he played golf with others from the board. He and his wife have two children who I'm sure are all too familiar with these meet ups. I think Ron did a great job with organizing these meetups and if he was worried about it,don't, it turned out great.

Next Caryn and her husband from Indiana arrived. We spoke about the STEELERS and the Colts a little. Before long the rest of the people all arrived at once I think.

From then on I spoke briefly to Patrish and Wally who I met before,and said hello to Lorraine and Jeff who we also met last year.

I was waiting for Leo and turned around and there he was. Okay, here's my chance as I'm thinking what to say. We had a bet as to going parasailing this year. So Leo you know what I meant when I said I guess we can't go parasailing this year because our agreement was if we were there this year and another couple from Indiana (ED and Kathy) were also there we would all go but they were not so I told him that got him out of going. He said no, that I was saying that because it gets me out of going. Leo you read me like a book!! So we disussed this for awhile and I thought about going parasailing myself. I know Leo does have to work while all of us board members intrude on the locals private lives. So seriously, I understand this. Leo is such an easy person to talk to. You know when you meet certain people, some you think it's like you've known them your whole life. He's that kind of person. Anyhow, he did convince me to go and I did 3 days later.

Then we met Brett and Katie and I had to harass Brett about the Gators and Buckeyes. He didn't seem to care I think he was so tired from driving from Ohio 1 or 2 days ago. Katie looks great! Nice and thin. Their 2 little girls are very well behaved. I could not imagine taking my younger son to functions like this at that age. He'd be all over the place. We are Steeler fans so we have black marks against us as Katie is a Patriot fan.

We talked briefly to Deanna from Tennessee. Her husband likes to golf and that is great because she gets extra beach time while he is out golfing. They don't have to be together. How nice is that for awhile?

We talked to Alan. I followed some of his driving directions this year which I liked better. I love reading his posts. He tells it like it is.

Last I spoke with Bob and Bonnie who now live there. They seem like they can be so much fun. Bonnie likes to warn Bob of the red lights coming up while Bob is driving like I warn Rich about them. (Correct me if I'm wrong Bob.) It was great talking with you.

I met Colleen and Brian and didn't speak much to them as there were alot of people and time went by too swiftly. Hope they enjoy their move to MB.

Once again, it was great getting together. Two years ago when my husband joined the message board I was very reluctant to meet anybody but now I look forward to seeing everyone. Thanks to all the moderators on the board and thanks again Ron. Cathy

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2007 5:05 am 
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I want to start off by saying "Thank you" to everybody that showed up for the meet-up. I was worried that no one would show up, I have that kind of bad luck. It was great to meet everybody again and for the first time.

We were there early and I was taking some photos by KISS Coffeehouse, and I didn't notice until I uploaded them, that Rich and Cathy were in the photo. Bottom right corner>>> http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1224/819 ... beb3_o.jpg

When we went to Auntie Anne's the first people there were Vicki, Kay, and Aaron, and Rich and Cathy. We were talking and then one by one everyone else showed up, I was giddy with excitement!! :nanner:

I don't think anyone left until it got dark, and we never did do Katie's plan of going to the playground area where we could have sat down to rest our weary feet from all the standing. http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1277/820 ... a780_b.jpg

Some people did get pretzels, but nobody was caught on camera eating one. Ryan and Brittany needed to get one, I was to busy being in awe of the turn out. :notworthy:

I had a great time, and would do it again in a heartbeat.

Here are all the meet-up photos.

http://flickr.com/photos/myrtlebeachbum ... 837945509/


Thanks to Bob & Bonnie for coming to this meet-up, great to meet you in person. We'll have to talk more the next time. Also Caryn & Jeff, thanks for coming to the meet-up so we can put a face to the name. See it wasn't that bad to meet some strangers. Hope you guys enjoyed yourselves?

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Ron



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Last edited by Myrtlebeachbum on Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Meetup
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2007 8:00 am 
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Location: An Ohio Buckeye!
That is so funny that you caught those two in the photo and never realized it. I enjoyed looking at all your pictures. Between you and Jeff (parrothead) I think there must be a 1000 photos! Sounds like you and your family had a wonderful time at the two meetups and your trip as well.

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LISA

SeaWatch Resort 2010
Monterey Bay 2007
Dayton House 2005
Crown Reef Resort 1998
Palace Resort 1997
Bluewater resort 1994


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2007 9:11 am 
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Location: Myrtle Beach- Formerly Nashua, NH
Great pictures, Ron! (Took you long enough.... hee hee hee!).

Who invited that duck to our meetup???! Maybe it was a spy duck sent in by Mike L. :lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2007 4:23 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
Hey Everyone,

Sorry it has taken me so long to comment on the meet-up but I wanted to wait until I got home so I wouldn’t be rushed for words. First let me say that Doug was very hesitant about attending the meet up and my son Ryan will never let me forget that we would never allow him to do such a thing. I understand Doug’s concern because our niece had a scary internet situation several years ago. However, I will say that all your kind words have loosened him up. He is willing to do it again when we hopefully come back in the fall.

First I want to say that everyone was just so nice. I sometimes have a hard time finding the right words when meeting new people but all of you made it so easy. The first person I met was our lovely Patrish. Everyone always says what a jewel she is and they are so right. She is such a people person and she makes you feel like you could just sit down and talk with her for hours. What a gift….Hopefully someday I will get to do that. I only got to meet Wally as were leaving but he seemed super nice also.

I then got to meet Ron and you know what?? I never got to thank him personally for planning the meet-up. So thanks Ron or is it Opie ??? Ron and Mary have a beautiful family. Their daughter Brittany was such an angel and she looks just like her dad. I didn’t get to talk with their son Ryan too much but on the flip side he looks just like his mom. You guys were a treat to meet.

Then there was Cathy & Rich. Just thinking about them brings a smile to my face. I had not put the two together on the board so I was shocked to find out they were married. Learn something new everyday…Can’t wait to hear about their trip to Vegas…Cathy, no backing out. I would hate to hear of Rich dragging you by your heels.

Then I got to meet my fellow Tennessean’s Jeff & Lorraine. You know these two impressed me a long time ago with their faith and it really was nice getting to meet them. I didn’t get to chat with them near as long as I would have liked but they are just right around the corner here in Tennessee.

Then there was this teenager named Aaron who just happened to be Vicki & Kay’s grandson. Now Aaron was so not your typical teenager, he didn’t seem to mind at all hanging around us adults. I am sure he is the apple of his grandparent’s eye.

Then of course there was Leo…Everyone wants to meet Leo!! He is another one of those people that you just want to get to know. I have already forgiven him for making fun of my southern accent. I think I will get with Jeff & Lorraine and invite him to Tin-is-seee for some lessons in southern speaking 101.

Brain & Colleen were just the sweet couple that I expected. When I first went over to Colleen she hugged me like she had known me forever. It really was nice getting to chat with her for a few minutes and also to learn that our sons are about the same age. I am sure we could have some long conversations about raising teenage boy’s….

Brett & Katie were just full of energy (even though they were dog tired from their vacation). I so much wanted to meet Katie and she was exactly as I expected…. Very much the devoted wife and mom. However, I forgot to ask how her and her dad get these jobs at home. I want to know the secret because I want to live at the beach and work at home... Brett, just thought I would let you know that my boys (Doug & Ryan) are the most competitive football guys I know. We don’t plan anything on Saturday afternoons in the fall and when we travel to Rocky Top for the games we are there 4 hours before the game to take in all the activities. Doug was holding back on you..I am sure you guys could have some great football conversations.


Caryn, & Jeff I am glad I got to say a quick hello before we had to leave. It is always good to put a face and name together.

Bob & Bonnie I recognized you both instantly as the new locals (yes I am jealous) but really didn’t get a chance to chat. I promise to do better next time.

Alan & Ruann I don’t think I got the chance to introduce myself and I am so sorry. If I did just remember I am the worlds worst with names. I truly thought I had caught everyone.

Whew..I just wrote a book and I would just die if I left anyone out. I just couldn’t mention one person and not everyone. Sorry it’s so long.

This really was a great experience for me. I hope to attend another meet up VERY soon.

My trip report is on the way.

Deanna


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