Twin Cities Section Mercedes-Benz Club of America “Vino in the Valley Rally” a Success!

8 cars and 16 people participated, a nice selection of cars, and people.

I attended and participated in a very casual scavenger rally that the Twin Cities Section of the Mercedes-Benz Club of America put on last weekend, Sunday, August 8th. I was teamed up with club member and REAL car guy, Warren Rauch for the event. The summary of the event below was put together by Jim Walrath, one of our Twin City Section members who lives over the border in Wisconsin. So I’ll leave most of the explanation of the event to him… it’s really just an excuse to get out and go for a drive in the country, whether you’ve got an old sedan, SL roadster or newer, more modern Mercedes-Benz vehicle. As usual, good cars, good fun,  good people.

Thanks really must go to the organizers of the event, Ken Arneson and Julie Winger. It takes two champions like this to decide on a fun event and go about setting everything up, scouting the course to be driven, talking to the business owners where the rallyers will stop. They did a fantastic job and put together a fun event in a beautiful setting that everyone enjoyed.

While Warren and I drove along the very scenic “County Road A” (speed limit 25 mph) we lamented at the low speed of the affair and that it might have been a bit more exciting if we were doing 140 mph in a Mercedes-Benz SLR… but we settled in for a fun afternoon drive never the less, At least we could dream that I was Sterling Moss and he was Ab Jenkins. Warren and I talked cars pretty much the whole time. We’d crane our necks if there was something interesting parked next to a farm house and tell a story about how we “knew a guy with one of those” years ago, or in Warren’s case, how he probably owned “one of those” at some point.

It was a fun day to take in a couple of wineries, a candy store, and a cheese factory while cruising in a 25 year old S class that’s just as comfortable today as it was in the mid 1980s, thank goodness the A/C was ice cold, we had it cranked all day.

There was a lot of talk about another “Vino in the Valley Rally” next year, there are plenty of other winding country roads to explore over that way,I hope we have an even bigger turn out next year.

Here is Jim Walrath’s summary of the event (lots of photos below):

On a beautiful, warm, muggy day August 8th members of the Twin Cities Section inaugurated the Scavenger Rally!  The headquarters were at Vino in the Valley, Maiden Rock, WI in a very pretty setting in Western Wisconsin, itself worthy of a destination drive.  The Rally is a low competition rally to several nearby businesses to check out the business and its products.  Stops were made at the Crazy Cat Candy Shoppe (Stockholm, owned by member participants Ryan Pool and Deb Albardo), Nelson Cheese Factory (Nelson), Dockside Mercantile (Pepin), and Maiden Rock Winery and Cidery (on the bluff above Stockholm).  At each location the Ralleyers obtained verification of their stop, with all four verifications giving participants eligibility for a prizes drawing.  Lunch was a salad bar and delicious brick oven pizza made on site.  Ken Arneson and Julie Winger, Host and Hostess, arranged this to be a very special event, and the consensus was that it was a great time!
Event Hosts Ken Arneson and Julie Winger.
Vino in the Valley acted as rally H.Q. and a good place to eat lunch.
Ken and Julie in their CLK heading out of Stockholm, WI.
Ryan Pool and Deb Albardo, MBCA members, rally participants, and owners of The Crazy Cat Candy Shop treated rally participants to truffles and other chocolates upon their arrival in Stockhom, WI, absolutely worth a visit!
Inside the Crazy Cat, Stockhom, WI.
The 380SL of Gabriele Dellanave and Cindy Wright in front of the 420 SEL of Dave Tobin and Warren Rauch.
The business end of Dave Bortner's 450 SEL 6.9 liter sedan in front of the Dosckside Mercantile, Lake Peppin, WI.
The "rare" Mercedes-Benz C42 wagon of Ryan Pool and Deb Albardo.
The group, starting with front left: Kara Arne, Dave Tobin, Warren Rauch, Deb Albardo, Gabriele Dellanave, Dale Werth, (mostly hidden) Susan Roherer, Ken Arneson (host), Julie Winger (hostess), Cindy Wright, Ryan Pool, Jim Walrath, Mary Walrath, Ursula Lamprecht, Rudi Lamprecht, Dave Bortner.

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