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November-December 1999 Newsletter

They Said It Couldn’t Be Done!
Reformatted OKHT Saves the Day!

by Earl Jones


This year’s Old Kentucky Home Tour, held on September 11, was not the typical tour. This year we experimented with a one-day ride format. As some of you know, there was some doubt that the 1999 tour would even be held. But a group of dedicated club members who attended the general membership meeting on July 25 were determined not to let OKHT disappear from the scene even for a year and took on the challenge of making it happen. A one-day ride proved to be the perfect solution.

The strength of the OKHT franchise was demonstrated by the fact that more than 400 people registered for the ride even though publicity was minimal. Some even preferred the new format while others longed for the return of the traditional two-day format. The tour leaders learned some valuable lessons that will be applied in next year’s ride. New leadership has been selected and planning is already under way for the OKHT Millennium tour. It promises to be the biggest and best ever, so hold the dates: September 9-10, 2000.

This year’s ideal weather meant a lot of day-of-ride registrations, more than 300. That made things pretty hectic for Kimble Howard and the group of volunteers who helped with registration. This was the first year that one-way routes to Bardstown were supplemented by routes that looped back to the starting point at Eastern High School in Middletown. Jim McDonald, VP Touring, led the group that selected and marked the routes.

Of course the SAG stops won high marks from riders. Bob Horner did another fantastic job selecting and buying the food and organizing the post-ride wiener roast.

Barbara Berman and her group at SAG #1 in Whitfield were probably the busiest because riders stopped there going out and returning. But the honor for imagination has to go to the Clan McDonald Jim, Lauren, Tim, Martha and the Caudills who brought their bagpipes to SAG #2 and piped the riders up Schoolhouse Hill in Waterford.

Dave Stewart assembled an awesome crew of roving SAGs, who, because of this year’s routing, were never out of contact with riders for very long.

And have you seen the jersey? Another great design by John Mahorney that celebrated Lance Armstrong’s win of the Tour de France Yellow Jersey and the end of the millennium. It took a yeoman’s effort to get the jerseys and T-shirts printed and delivered in time for the ride. Credit Jerry Wiley with that feat.

I’d like to again thank these tour leaders and everyone who worked the ride (see list of volunteers). You came through when it really counted.

Let’s all Party Like It’s 1999 and celebrate a successful OKHT!


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Web posted: 17 October 1999
last updated: 18 October 1999
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