The Snowbirds FAT POINT Rally & FreeLOAders Festival is January 14-16, 2020 south of Punta Gorda, Florida. A small gathering is anticipated so register if you want to escape the northern snows. Snow is almost unheard of here unless you watch the TV news. Weather is generally good but can also swing with cold fronts & rain. We will order 80 degree sunny days and 60 degree nights but the resulting celestial delivery may be unpredictible.
The location is semi-private property owned by the Quinces, your hosts for this event. Our dirt house sits in the middle of three lots with a circle drive access around the house off a newly paved road. There are some areas of shell gravel fill used for visiting FreeLOAders east of the house and the rest is scrub grass. Most of the area is shaded with mossy oaks and palm trees. It will be a boondockers paradise where we can fit about 15 rigs here without squeezing too much so we are targeting that number to start for reservations and will keep a wait list of 5 for overflow & cancellations.
We’ve picked three days for the core gathering but expect shoulder stays from those interested. Come early, stay later if you wish.
Day 1 - Tapas Party Introductions - this will be a group get together about sunset at 5 to 6 pm having everyone bring a favorite appetizer dish to share and to meet everyone else at the gathering around a bonfire, weather permitting. We expect most people to already be here or arriving by this time. (We don’t plan dinner since there is usually enough to eat with just the shared tapas) The day can be spent nesting, meeting new friends and getting over the travel blues. Shopping and hardware are nearby.
Day 2 - Smoked Ribs BBQ - we will spend the day smoking a dozen baby back ribs and will have a group BBQ in the evening at 5-6. Other meats, fishes or your Tofu’s can be done with the Weber gas grill. We will have a list of other bbq dishes for the feast....corn, salad, baked beans, cole slaw, potato salad, pickles, pasta salad, etc. This can be a free day for those that want to explore the area or recreate....golf, fishing, biking, birding, beaches, etc. .....or for shopping the outlet malls. There are also the Ringling Circus Museum in Sarasota and the Edison Ford estate complex nearby in Ft Myers which are good attractions.
Day 3 - Paella Pit Potluck - we will prepare a community paella and have a potluck supper. The Paella is a boiled rice dish big enough for everyone to get a taste. Campers can bring a new favorite dish to pass as they clean up their unit. We will have a Lance Walk before dinner at 4 pm when all units will be open for inspection of layouts and modifiations. Then the fire gets lit to cook the paella. This is another free day otherwise doing whatever you like.
Additional event details will be added as time goes by and 2020 creeps up on us. We’ll add pages for the Roster (let us know what you are bringing for equipment & # of people); Potluck Menu (let us know what you are dishing out will be so we can balance the fare); Resources (let us know your needs like Propane, etc.); Amenities Available (host provided or available items); and Things ToDo (a list of local sites and activities).
Anyone familiar with SW florida, please let us know some of your favorite places and things to do. Ask questions and make suggestions - Thanks. This is going to be an easy going gathering of friendly freeLOAders. There is no cost to participate as we love free campgrounds! Pass it forward! We’ll do a 50/50 raffle instead of event donations to defer any minor costs and all donations of alcohol will likely be consumed before the event ends.
Plan to bring firewood!
Jim & Vaughn
Shoot for the moon, even if you miss you’ll be among the stars!