Wednesday, March 21, 2018
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20171109 Victoria Palms Halloween contest Coachmen

Approximately 25 Coachman owners participated in a week-long Destination Rally to Victoria Palms to learn more about the things the Rio Grande Valley has to offer. The event was planned by Judi McClellan and her husband, Jack, who have been coachman owners for 45 years.

Judi McClellan, general manager of the Victoria Palms Inn and Suites, and her husband, Jack, have been owners of a Coachman home on wheels for 45 years. Together they have attended more than 200 local, state, national and international Coachman Rallies.

This year, Judi decided to organize a destination rally to Victoria Palms for other Coachman owners who might not know about the Rio Grande Valley. Judi explained that a destination rally is a rally where participants go to one location and try to visit as many of the sights in the area as possible. In the spring Judy planned the rally to Victoria Palms and about 25 residents from other areas of the country decided to participate. They represented Arizona, Illinois, Kansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Connecticut, Ohio and Texas.

“None of those attending the rally had ever been to the Rio Grande Valley before,” McClellan said. “It is my hope that some of them may want to come back and spend a part of the winter down here.”

Judi planned a variety of activities for them including a visit to South Padre Island for dinner and a ride on the pirate boat. They also visited Quinta Mazatlan, the World Birding Center's McAllen location and the Riverside Dreamer pontoon boat in Mission. They also made a visit to Javier’s Wine Estate in western Hidalgo County.

McClellan said the people were taken to sites on the park’s bus. Although the resort’s restaurant was not officially open for the season yet, it catered the meals for the rally.

Participants have one day off during the weeklong rally and some were planning to travel to Corpus Christi, while others were planning to tour the Basilica, McClellan said.

Of course, participants were allowed to take part in activities at the resort including the Halloween Bash. John and Janine St. Jean of Surprise, Ariz., were second-place winners in the Halloween Costume Contest, dressing as Hershey bars, one plain and one full of nuts!

McClellan said participants had commented on how friendly the people of the Rio Grande Valley were toward them and how they welcomed them. Many had visited Florida and Arizona and found the people there more reserved. They were enjoying the open friendly attitude of Valley residents.

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