Rally Celebration at Lebanon Expo

Sunday, June 28

DSC_5846By Sunday morning, the sun was shining, but leftover rain drops from the day before were on each truck that was still on the grounds.

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DSC_5848The Browns were back for another delightful, inspiring Gospel concert.

DSC_5851I love the Sunday morning worship session.

DSC_5852It is always more relaxed than the day before.

DSC_5853I always remember what Laura Hertle (Chaplain Dave’s wife), from Omaha, Nebraska, when they were able to attend one year.

“The Rally Celebration is like a explanation mark on the weekend.”

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DSC_5875We asked Inge Koenig, Executive Assistant to the President, and Editor of Highway News and Good News, to share her testimony after The Brown’s concert.

She has a most unusual life story and journey from Brazil (where she was born) to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

Following the morning service Country Home Caterers served a delicious meal to about 200 people. I was so busy collecting tickets (which had been previously purchased) and talking to people that I forgot to take any pictures of the food.

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After lunch, the committee always meets to review the previous day and make notes of necessary changes or creative ideas.

It surely was an unusual Truck Rally – with all the rain – but we concluded that it was a very God-blessed weekend.

Pennsylvania Truck Rally – Children’s Reptile Program

Saturday Afternoon, June 27

This post should have been ahead of last night’s entry, but I guess it won’t matter if the last two entries are not in chronological order. 🙂

1Jesse Rothacker with Forgotten Friends is a Truck Rally favorite – of the children and adults.

1aSince Jere helped Jesse find his spot in the building, Jesse, Ian, and Jared were there to help him unload. He was glad for the extra helpers as he had a tight schedule – having traveled to the Lebanon Expo from another event.

DSC_5670Jared and Jesse’s large tortoise.

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DSC_5677Jesse asked our Jesse and Ian to leave a trail of grapes on the floor for the tortoise.

DSC_5678He promptly followed them – devouring them as he went.

DSC_5680East Hall was filled with children, parents, and grandparents.

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DSC_5685Jesse displayed a nice variety of snakes and reptiles, telling us about their special features.

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DSC_5697Notice his car in the background. Jesse said he was especially glad for the ability to drive inside to unload since it was raining quite heavily when he arrived.

DSC_5700He asked Jared to lift the tortoise.

DSC_5702The two Jesse’s. He asked our Jesse to help with this snake. If I remember correctly it was a plastic snake to teach them to distinguish between this snake and the next one which is real.

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DSC_5732He surely does a great job with the critters and in entertaining his audience.

Pennsylvania Truck Rally – The Evening Program

Saturday, June 27

1Our evening program began with a half-hour concert by The Browns, Le Mars, Iowa.

They are without a doubt one of my favorite gospel music groups, and I love when they add an Irish lilt to their songs.

2aWe had a great crowd for a cool, rainy evening.

3 (2)Two brothers, a sister, and their mother.

3 (3)I love their music and energy.

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3 (13)“Blessing of the Drivers”

During TFC’s half hour program – between The Brown’s concerts – truck drivers and retired drivers were asked to stand and be recognized. It was wonderful to see many, many drivers standing across the audience. Chaplain Chris (Harrisburg Chapel) prayed for them, asking God to bless and direct their lives.

It was an awesome moment in time – a highlight of the day.

3aDoor prizes for drivers. The boxes are designed and donated by Frank Calaman.

They are filled by Chaplain Jake and Jane Wise – using mostly donated items from local trucking companies.

3bOne crate is sold over the auction, and the other eleven are given to drivers by pulling names from the registration forms.

4 (1)TFC’s President and CEO, Scott Weidner, waiting in the entry room with his wife, Karen, for his turn on stage.

4 (2)He gave an interesting ministry update.

4 (3)Then we were blessed by another forty-five minutes of delightful, fabulous, inspiring gospel music.

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4 (11)I love to the trucks at the end of the day

4 (12)I took these pictures from our car as I was leaving the grounds – weary but incredibly blessed by the dreary, rainy day.

Pennsylvania Truck Rally – Children’s Activities

Saturday, June 27

Children (1)We were supposed to have a regular climbing wall, but it was not workable when we had to move inside – so this was a nice replacement.

Children (2)Jared going up the wall.

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Children (5)This is what it looks like on the other end – the person who is holding the rope for the one climbing the wall. This rope-holder is Corby Russell – who oversees the Children’s Activities with his wife, Vanessa.

Children (6)This rope-holder is our grandson Hezekiah.

Children (7)Jesse wanted me to photograph his climb.

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Children (9)This Obstacle Course from Big Bright Bounces was lots of fun for the children.

Children (10)It included a small climbing wall…

Children (11)…and a slide.

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Children (13)A small bounce house for the little ones.

Children (14)The children’s train driver, Calvin Kleinfelter, was glad for the large building for giving rides. He did take the children outside when the rain was light.

Children (15)The corn bin is a highlight for the younger children.

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Children (17)Coloring pages were part of the children’s scavenger hunt.

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The scavenger hunt has questions like: get the signature of a trucker who drives a Peterbilt; get the signature of the wife of a truck driver; count the number of tables displaying items in the children’s auction room; what is the make of the truck in the vendor room next to the flowers; etc. They must also find four stamps and stamp pads to fill out a certain area of the page. There are fifteen different things for them to do. When they are finished they get a coupon for a free ice cream cone. Fifty-one children finished the scavenger hunt this year.

Children (19)We had excellent face (and arm) painters.

Ashlea (our great-niece) and Gloria (our granddaughter) display their John Deere symbols.

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Children (22)These guys wanted to pose together for a photo – Brant is the pirate and Jayden has a snake on his face. They are children of Marlin and Brenda Newswanger.

Children (23)This cutie is our great-niece Heidi.

Children (24)When she went to bed that night and learned that she must wash her face before Sunday school the next day, she said, “I wish the Truck Rally wasn’t on a Saturday.”

Her mom, Amy, asked why she didn’t like that the Truck Rally was on a Saturday.

Heidi said, “I would like to keep the face painting on longer.” 🙂

Pennsylvania Truck Rally – Auctions, Food, & Vendors

Saturday, June 27

Auctions (1)Auctioneer/trucker Dave White selling a gift basket while main auctioneer, Joel Heisey, points out a bidder.

Auctions (2)One good thing about a rainy day, the auction crowd was larger than usual, and the profit was up $2,000.00 from the previous year.

Auctions (3)Gift baskets and food sold very well.

Auctions (4)The children – and their parents – enjoyed the children’s auction with auctioneer/trucker Nevin Ebersole.

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Food (0)The outside food vendors – Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, Lawn & Laurel Cook’s Cotton Candy, and The Ice Cream Truck – had to move inside Brightbill Arena near the children’s activities because of the rain. We liked them there.

Food (1)The fairgrounds kitchen was busy all day.

Food (2)The evening meal was planned by the Rally Food Committee.

Food (3)It is always amazing to see how quickly the line of people move through South East Hall as they get their barbecue meal.

Food (4)Peters’ Barbecue, Manheim, did a fabulous job of preparing the meat for this meal.

Food (5)There was chicken (1/2 or a leg & thigh) and pulled pork.

Vendors (1)West Hall was filled with twenty-six interesting vendors. Our son Jeff posed with his old Chevy next to lots of flowers which were for sale and donated by Esbenshade;s Greenhouses.

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Vendors (7)Gouldeys had an attractive display of chrome and related items.

Vendors (6)Harry and Jodi Sensening help our truckers “Take Shape For Life.” The TFC table was to their left (your right).

Vendors (8)Model trucks

Vendors (9)Bergey’s Tire

Vendors (10)Jewlery

Vendors (5)Jane Wise’s artwork was a new and beautiful attraction this year.

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Vendors (12)It was just after this picture – when Jane was looking for something to donate to the benefit auction – that she noticed something strange about my blouse.

She leaned over and whispered – “I think you have your blouse on inside out.”

I quickly removed it (I had a shirt on underneath) and turned it around. We were two hours into the day, so I wonder how many people noticed my size and the brand on the tags. 🙂

Pennsylvania Truck Rally – Part 2 – The Trucks

Saturday, June 27

Truck Rally Trucks (1)Because of the rain, we were pleased that 87 drivers brought their rigs – even though that was a very low number of trucks for our truck rally.

Truck Rally Trucks (2)As we went throughout the day and many things – except the weather – fell into place, we became assured that God was indeed blessing our day.

Truck Rally Trucks (3)We were honored by the drivers who did not allow the weather to keep them from bringing their rigs, and we were honored by the many drivers who came but did not bring their trucks.

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Truck Rally Trucks (7)Registration is usually held outside, but this year it was held inside the entrance area.

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Truck Rally Trucks (11)I took some of these pictures from inside our RAV 4, because I had to go home for something, and when I came back it was raining so hard, I just drove around and took a few pictures.

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Truck Rally Trucks (23)Only three trucks stayed dry all day long – this antique GMC which was featured in North Hall…

Truck Rally Trucks (24)…our beautiful stage from A.B. Martin, and our son’s antique Chevy in West Hall which I featured last night.

Truck Rally Trucks (25)Even our chapel was bathed in rain drops – from morning to evening.

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Truck Rally Trucks (27)Oh, what a day!

But as you will learn by the end of this set of Truck Rally pictures, God was with us and blessed us immensely.

TFC’s Pennsylvania Truck Rally – Part 1

Friday Evening, June 26 & Saturday Morning, June 27

Those who were looking for Truck Rally pictures probably thought I would never get to these.

I usually post pictures in order by the date I took them, and rarely post pictures just a day or so after they happen. If I do, it is on Facebook.

I purpose to blog for relaxation, and trying to keep up with things as they happen in our lives would not be relaxing. 🙂

DSC_5509Rose Gehman decorating our son Jeff’s 1946 Chevy in West Hall.

DSC_5510Because of the price of helium, the people doing the decorative balloons could not afford to do them anymore, so we looked for something to add some pizazz to the flower area, and this certainly seemed to do the job.

DSC_5513Rose spent a lot of time fine-tuning her decorations. She did a great job.

The flowers are donated by Esbenshade’s Garden Center and Greenhouses, Lititz, PA.

DSC_5517Lydia and Hezekiah (our grandchildren from Maine) set up 100 chairs in East Hall for the children’s activities.

DSC_5519North Hall was a scurry of activity as the food committee and their helpers prepared the cookies and potatoes for Saturday’s evening meal.

DSC_5520Cookies from Weaver’s Market

DSC_5521Plastic gloves are necessary for this job.

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DSC_5524Wrapping 800 potatoes in tinfoil

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DSC_5532Inge (right – near camera), Executive Assistant to TFC’s President and Editor of Highway News and Good News, enjoyed helping with preparations this year.

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When set up was finished we went home to get a good night’s sleep before the big day, knowing – if weather forecasters were correct – it was going to be a wash-out, as rain, sometimes heavy, was predicted for the entire day.

Cerwin, our son Jere, and I went to the Expo on Thursday evening to check out the two Brightbill buildings – which we never used – as it was becoming obvious that it was going to be necessary to move the children’s activities inside. We were delighted to discover that these buildings were more than adequate.

DSC_55356:00 AM breakfast for volunteers and key day workers was the first activity of Saturday morning. This waitress helped us surprise Gene Gehman (plaid shirt) for his 60th birthday.

DSC_5537Singing happy birthday before the meal.

DSC_5538A highlight of the morning was when one of the waitresses told us that she had accepted the Lord since our 2014 breakfast. She could hardly wait for us to arrive to give us the news that she was now our sister in Christ!

I do not have a picture of her. She said we may not recognize her, because she always walked with her head down, but now that she holds her head high people ask if she had back surgery. She said, “No, I now have reason to hold my head up high.”

We knew then – despite the predicted rain – we were going to have a good day!

DSC_5539The guys at the table closest to the camera were prepared with raincoats, because they knew they were going to have the toughest job of the day. They were the car parkers.

DSC_5540Shortly after arriving at Lebanon Expo, these rally coordinators met to make a decision on the parade of trucks as there was already a steady rain that was not supposed to stop until later that night. Thunderstorms and heavy rain were also predicted.

DSC_5541It didn’t take them long to agree on cancelling the parade of trucks.

Safety was a big issue, some of the drivers who had already arrived said they would be pleased if they didn’t have to go out on the road, and we would be asking a lot of firemen to stand outside in the breezy, cool, rainy weather for several hours if we held the parade.

So for the first time in Pennsylvania Truck Rally history – 34 years – the parade of trucks was cancelled.

DSC_5571The chapel was moved close to West Hall so people could go inside without getting wet, and bobtails were parked along the front of the building where food vendors usually parked. (The outside food venders were moved inside one of the Brightbill Buildings – along with the children’s activities.)

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More details and activities tomorrow night.

Last Weekend

January 17 & 18

DSC_4996-001Judi and her children enjoying window sunshine.

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DSC_5000-001They just got word today – Friday, January 23 – that the paperwork has been completed for them to leave Pennsylvania and head home with their little guy – who is in the process of being adopted.

DSC_5001-001I am going to miss all four of them, and hearing K calling for Aunt Sheen. Reuben and Judi call me Aunt Doris Jean, and Aunt Sheen is her shortened version.

Now I can add Aunt Sheen to the list of names I respond to: Doris Jean, Doris, DJ, Jeanie, Aunt Jeanie, Mom, and Grandma.

DSC_5005-001A pretty Saturday evening sunset.

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DSC_5011-001Sunday afternoon Truck Rally meeting.

This is the day each committee member fine-tunes their plans for the day – which is Saturday, June 27 this year.

DSC_5013-001Our son Jere leads the meeting as Rally Coordinator.

DSC_5014-001There are some fun new events for this year – like an outside climbing wall for the children and teenagers.

We are discontinuing the evening light show due to safety reasons. We are all concerned about trucks moving into place and away from the grounds with so many people walking around.

DSC_5016-001I say this every year. I do not like committee meetings, but this is the best team in the world.

Truck Rally 2014 ~ Saturday Evening & Sunday Morning

Saturday evening’s activities began with a barbecue supper – choice of chicken or boneless pork rib.

1We served about 850 people.

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2 (4)The evening program began at 6:30 with the Bontrager Family Singers from Iowa.

In this photo they are introducing the twelve family members.

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3During a break in the music, valuable door prizes were given to drivers whose names were drawn from the registration box.

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4 (1)Ian drew the names and his dad, Jere, (Rally Coordinator) called out the winners.

4 (3)I think there were eleven winners.

4 (6)Jeff Batzer, TFC Executive Vice President of Ministry Programs gave an interesting ministry update.

4 (7)Cerwin gave a chapel construction update before the evening’s offering.

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2 (8)We were blessed with another concert by The Bontrager’s (7:30 and 8:30). They call this instrumental “Sibling Cooperation.” 🙂

2 (6)All twelve Bontragers are incredibly blessed with musical talent.

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6 (11)Following the concert, we enjoyed a beautiful light show by the truckers who remained.

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6 (12)We praise the Lord for beautiful weather and safety of everyone.

9 (1)We were back at the Expo on Sunday morning for the Rally Celebration service and enjoyed another program by the Bontragers.

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7After the service, we enjoyed a delicious meal which was catered by Country Home Catering.

9aWe are always amazed how quickly a year comes and goes and another Truck Rally is just a memory.

Thanks to the many sponsors who made these affordable days for our trucking families. All activities are free except for the food.

Thanks to our incredible committee and the many day helpers. We did not count the day volunteers this year, but when we did count them the other year, there were more than 200.

We feel blessed indeed!

Mark your 2015 calendar for the next Rally. June 27 & 28.

Truck Rally 2014 ~ Afternoon Activities

When the parade was over, I walked around the grounds and through the buildings looking for photo opportunities.

This is what I saw…

1A (2)Truckers visiting among the trucks

2Benefit auction in North Hall

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1C (1)Exhibitors in West Hall

1C (2)That’s where I found Lynn and her husband, Jon.

Lynn is from the International Office and was helping with a truckers survey.

3The Children’s Activity area was busy from the time it opened at 11:30 until it closed at 3:30.

3B (1)When I entered, I met these three and their grandma who were going for free ice cream cones – because they had finished the scavenger hunt.

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3ATo complete the scavenger hunt, the children have to get signatures of specific truckers (by the truck they drive – Peterbilt, Kenworth, etc.), count vendors, and find stamps in specific area.

We gave away sixty cones this year. 🙂

3B (3)This young fellow is trying to get a lollipop.

3B (4)The corn bin was popular with the young ones.

3B (6)The electronic bull ~ by The Bull Guys ~ was a fun challenge.

3B (8)Auntie Anne’s and the ice cream truck are popular places.

There is also food in the fairgrounds kitchen.

3B (9)2:30 PM ~ Nevin Ebersole auctioned at the Children’s Auction.

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38-DSC_3245I was delighted when Martin Reiff came to me and said that his son-in-law would take me up on the man-lift.

Martin knows I love to have that opportunity.

50-DSC_3269Hey, Sam Rittenhouse! I caught you getting ice cream. 🙂

43-DSC_3252Oh, look! It’s my friends, “The Three Stooges.” 🙂

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41-DSC_3248That was fun!

57-DSC_3278Our grandson Jared must have visited Clair and Millie Stauffer’s stand in West Hall.

59-DSC_3283The 4:00 PM Children’s Program was by Kingdom Kidz Puppet Ministry.

They did a great job of sharing the gospel on the kids level.

69-DSC_3298Their finale was a real hit ~ when the children got to hold the puppets and help with the last song.

They must have 30 or 40 puppets.

66-DSC_3293Our grandson Jesse loved his debut as a puppeteer.

There are a lot more pictures from the afternoon on my Facebook page ~ https://www.facebook.com/doris.j.high/media_set?set=a.10152192667992322.1073741842.612697321&type=3