December-The Ark-A-Bago Club welcomed the Christmas season with the following members attending the Dec. 4-8 rally at the Cloud Nine RV Park in Hot Springs, AR: Benson, Bolte, Brandes, Ford, Gould, Grice, Harris, Kadrzynski, Matthews, Norris, Rozeboom, Singel, and Weaver. We also had Booth and Tillman drive in for Christmas dinner.
On Monday after morning coffee, we had table games and shopping trips. We had a terrific Soup Supper Potluck. Immediately following we had our fourth Club Business Meeting for 2017 and the installation of our Club Offices for 2018. President: Betty Bolte, Secretary: Judy Brandes, Treasurer: James Matthews, and Vice President: Vic Rozeboom, were sworn in by Elvan Ford, a former Club President.
Tuesday in the morning, the ladies started to prepare for our annual Club Christmas Dinner. With the club providing the hams, the members chipped in side dishes, vegetables, relishes, and many excellent desserts. The result was a very satisfying dinner, along with the cherished ‘family’ fellowship to be enjoyed by all!
Following our dinner, we set up for our annual “Sneaky Santa” gift exchange. With 26 members participating in this happy event, we needed to take two pictures to show all. As is usually the case, there just had to be some special gifts that were paired up for their special people. Whenever this happens, the results are extremely hilarious and must be recorded for history! Upon receiving a lantern gift, Virgil immediately stood up and walked over to Bonnie. Standing behind her and with a smile, he placed it on the top of her head. Looked like she knew what he was trying to say by crowning her with ligh—that “Bonnie is a Christmas Angel,” right?!
Tim was very pleased to have picked a wine glass. The extremely deep and wide hollow stem on the wine glass read:“Finally, a wine glass that fits my needs!” No one dared to form a thought of trying to steal it. They could tell by Tim’s look that it was his to keep and cherish forever! “Bottoms Up, Tim!”
Wednesday dinner leftovers for lunch kept everyone in camp while playing table games, shooting pool, and just visiting. Dinner was a special road trip to “Mr. Whiskers.” The food was great and the service excellent!
Thursday many Bagos went to breakfast at the “Pancake House” in downtown Hot Springs. Once again, the food and service were excellent.
Following breakfast, we traveled to the “Riley Art Glass Studio” at its new downtown location on West Grand Avenue. Brothers, Michael and Charles, purchased this former Hot Springs fire station and did extensive refurbishing, turning it into both a glass-blowing furnace manufacturing facility and a separate temperature controlled product display room. This visiting event has turned out to be a twice-annual affair for the Bagos for the past four years.
Since moving into downtown from their initial rural home location, their business has really taken off. But they still enjoy showing visitors how they can produce many different fine and unique glass articles to be cherished forever! While Charles feeds his glass creation into the furnace, Michael explained what was taking place regarding the sensitive steps taken in obtaining the final piece of glass art. Their combined presentation makes this stop so entertaining and produced a feeling of being an informed member on their artistic family team. Much appreciated!
Many Bagos had departed throughout the morning hours and after the lunch hour. Those remaining once again played table games, shot pool, and visited. By Friday, everyone had departed for home. It was a wonderful rally and a big thank you to Mary Ann and Elvan for being our rally hosts.
By Judy Brandes