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Southeast (Gulf Coast), Texas, United States

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Socializing in Red Bay With Tiffin Owners

We arrived in Red Bay last Tuesday night and overnighted at Custom RV Inc, owned by Brannon Hutcheson and located in Vina, AL.  We were scheduled to be there at 7:00AM on Wednesday to begin what was estimated to be 2 days of work.

If you refer to the previous post, you can see our list of   repairs, and a discussion of the work that was done.  We had originally planned to get our front Panasonic TV replaced in Red Bay, but at that time we had also scheduled an appointment in Florida on this past Monday morning to get a set of our double-paned side window units repaired rather than replaced, and decided that we needed to leave last Friday to make that trip.

To keep on schedule to attend a rally that we signed up for in Okeechobee, FL, we went ahead and had the window unit ‘replaced’ at a higher cost in Red Bay, and cancelled the Florida shop work.

Therefore, when we finished up a day early, Patsy and I moved from Vina, to Red Bay into one of the Red Bay Self-Serve campground, a short 10 mile drive from Vina!!  Our plan was to rest a couple of days, and then begin the drive to our rally location on Friday or Saturday morning.

When we began this road trip, we were aware that one other RV couple(the Jennings) from our local Allegro RV camping club in Texas were going to be in Red Bay about the same time as us.  As it turned out, we both arrived last Tuesday night!! 

Along the way, we had read in the blog of another Club member (the Mills) who had been Branson, and they also were on their way back to Texas by way of Red Bay and they also arrived on Tuesday night.  On Wednesday, we drove to the Tiffin Service Center campground to talk to the Jennings, and found them talking to a fourth member of our Texas Allegro Club, the Smiths! 

By the end of the day on Thursday, we ran into three other RV couples that had participated in an RV rally that our “Texas Bluebonnet Allegro Club” had organized in Canton, Texas last April…. they were the Bucks, Shirleys, and Balls.  With us, that made eight(8) couples who knew each other and were friends. 

We enjoy these people, and Patsy convinced me to stay at this Red Bay campground for a week, and leave on the next Wednesday morning.  So, we stayed!

The Shirleys were in Red Bay to watch their brand new 2017 Allegro Bus being built, and the Balls had spent a couple of years managing the Tiffin Service Center campground, and were passing through on their way to St. Louis, MO, and getting some repairs to their rig.

We spent some time visiting in between repairs, and going to dinner as a group on most of the nights. On Wednesday night, the Mills, Balls, Jennings and Kings went to a Mexican Restaurant in Belmont, MS called Costa Oaxaquena.  The food was good, but I forgot to take pictures!

On Thursday night, six(6) of the couples went back to Mississippi (about 10 miles) to eat at Reeves Fish and Steak House in Golden MS.

Around the table from front left:  Geri Ball, Patsy King,

Seated left front and around the tableGeri Ball, Patsy King, Sandy Mills, Mike Mills, Hank Smith, Shirleen Smith, Diane Jennings, Chip Jennings, Linn Buck, Ray Buck, Richard King, and Art Ball.

On Friday morning I got a text from a fellow Tiffin owner and friend, Jimmy Campbell, who knew were were in Red Bay.  He lives nearby, and asked us to have lunch with him and his wife, Robin.  They live only about 70 miles from Red Bay.  We chose to meet at a local Piggly Wiggly store in Red Bay that has a buffet and dining room in the store.  Here’s a picture of Jimmy and Robin with Patsy and I at ‘The Pig’ restaurant……..……..


On Friday night, a group of six(6) couples traveled to Tupelo, MS to dine at a Japanese Hibachi restaurant, Mt Fuji Japanese Steakhouse.  The food was excellent, and the entertainment by the chef was equally enjoyable.


Seated left front and around the tablePatsy King, Sandy Mills, Diane Jennings, Chip Jennings, Richard King,and Mike Mills.

Pictures of the inside of the restaurant, The Chef preparing our meal, and the outside of the restaurant:


The family of four seated at our table were celebrating the birthday of the boy in the red shirt…….. and were unlucky enough to be seated at our table!!.


Saturday, found us all choosing to stay in our rigs, cleaning, straitening cabinets, and cleaning because of the weather.  It rained, sometimes heavy, most of the day. 

On Sunday, the Jennings accompanied Patsy and I to the town of Florence, AL, about 60 miles to the North.  We needed some specific items for the Bus, and had a desire to eat at Rosie’s Mexican Cantina there………. but, being Sunday, it was closed. 

Using YELP, we found Legends Steakhouse!  It was a nice place to have a meal, and the food was good.  Here’s a picture in side the restaurant…


The Jennings at Legends Steakhouse enjoying lunch.

The following are pictures outside of “Legends”…….


Monday found us ‘hiding’ from the weather again.  This was more serious than Saturday.  The forecast was for heavy rains, lightening, 1/4 to 1/2 dollar sized hail, and tornadoes!!  One front moved through the area in the afternoon, and another about 11:00PM. 

There were enough sirens going off, and a lot of warnings on local TV’s.  When it was reported that a Sheriff’s Deputy had sighted a tornado on the ground in Belmont MS…….about 9 miles from Red Bay, Patsy decided that we were going to leave the Bus, and drive the 1/2 mile to the Tiffin campground and spend time in the concrete block owner’s waiting room!  Not a real shelter, but it did have enclosed restroom’s in the center of the building.

People came and went throughout the afternoon in the two waiting rooms, each with a TV tuned via DirecTV to local TV stations.  Here are some pictures………


The lady seated on the sofa with Patsy is Martha Shirley, who along with her husband, Larry, are in Red Bay to watch the build of their brand new 2017 Bus.

We were very lucky.  As the storm passed over us, we got a lot of heavy rain, and then we could hear hail on the roof, but, it was small and very light!!  Here’s a picture of the small amount the we got……


After the excitement of the storm threat passed, we invited the Shirley’s over to our Bus for a bowl of beef stew that Patsy had cooking all day in a Crock Pot.  The food was good, and the visit was just as good!  We took a picture of the Shirley’s before they called it a night, and headed to their rig.


On Tuesday, Patsy and I started getting the Bus ready to hit the road on Wednesday for Okeechobee, FL the site of the Tiffin Allegro Rally that we will be attending with Ronnie and Kathy Woods.  We will meet up with them at a point to be confirmed on Thursday morning….. probably at the Walmart at Marianna, FL.  We also began dumping tanks, taking on water, and washing a couple loads of clothes, including the sheets on our bed!

At 12:30PM, we had agreed to meet the Shirley’s at the Tiffin Paint ship in Belmont to check on the progress of their Bus, as it has been completed at the building shop and went to Belmont at noon today.  The Shirleys had not been to the paint shop yet, so we showed them around.

We found their Bus, and looked it over.


The above photos show:

!.  Patsy and I found their Bus at the entry to the Sanding Building

2.  The Shirley’s coming around the corner to see their Bus

3.  Larry posing in their ‘Mansion of a Bus’'

4.  Larry and Martha posing at the front inside of their Bus

5.  Patsy and the Shirley’s walking past their Bus to go back to Red Bay

Since Patsy and I will be leaving Wednesday morning, we decided to eat out one more time, and chose Costa Oaxaquena  Mexican restaurant, again!

This time, I took pictures………….


The restaurant was busy, and we had to occupy two six-person tables.

The above photos show:

!.  Patsy King, Sandy Mills, Mike Mills, Geri Ball and Art Ball

2.  I had to take two photos to show all six at the other table……… Larry Shirley, Chip and Diane Jennings, Ray and Linn Ray, and Martha Shirley

3.  Larry admiring his desert…….. a large serving of ice cream, chocolate syrup, and some large cinnamon strips.  It had a name, but I forgot it, but I did get a spoonful!!

As planned, Patsy and I got up about 7:30, and got on the road to Marianna FL about 9:00AM.  We were to meet Ronnie & Kathy Woods at the local Walmart to overnight, and leave Thursday Morning for the Tiffin Allegro  Rally at the Lake Okeechobee KOA in Florida.  We arrived in Marianna at 7:00PM, and Ronnie & Kathy about an hour and a half later.

More later from South Florida!!


Mike Mills said...

Good post, Richard! It could only have been better if you had more photos of, well, ME!

Richard said...

Yeah! I was thinking the same thing!! But, then I realized there was enough stuff in the post to make people feel sorry for that part of our trip!!