A Long Drive for Nothing

Southwestern Regional Rendezvous

It turned out to be a long drive for nothing. My goal this past weekend was to go to the Southwestern Regional Rendezvous in Leslie, Arkansas. I went. But I didn’t stay.

It was a 5.5 hour drive to Leslie, Arkansas from Norman, Oklahoma. About an hour into the drive it started to rain. It rained from Shawnee all the way to Leslie. When I got to Leslie I found the event. I pulled into the lot that was passing for a parking lot.

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SCARR – Day Two

Day Two began with the sun coming up. It was chilly but not crazy cold. I got up and started breakfast for Mr. Fisher and I. Eggs and turkey sausage (fat old guys have to watch their weight), and biscuits. I forgot all about the hash browns. The stove worked great after I got it up to pressure. I heated the biscuits right on the second burner. The honey-butter we bought was delicious.

The first day’s events had a Bill Burke lecture and trail rides. I really wanted to hear Bill Burke so we went straight for the main pavilion and sat in on his class. I could listen to him for days and probably not learn everything I would like to know.

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It was really cool that he knew who I was through my posts on Okierover.com and on his Facebook page.

If you don’t know who Bill Burke is check him out. In short he is the foremost expert on vehicle recovery in the United States. I don’t think I understated that. He started in the Army as a vehicle recovery specialist, went on to participate in the legendary Camel Trophy Series in 1991. […]

Living History Season is Upon Us

Living History — noun

any of various activities involving the re-enactment of historical events or the recreation of living conditions of the past

Some people think living history is just a bunch crazy people dressing up in old-timey clothes and hanging out at historical sites. You’ve seen the popular media make fun of living historians. Conan O’brien did a segment on it. (I laughed.)

There are some seriously dedicated people who IMMERSE themselves in their hobby. I’ve met some of them and even I think some of them over do it a bit. Whether it’s trains, model air planes, doll collecting, knitting, Land Rovers, or whatever. Some people really dive into their hobby. Whether its the trekkie learning the Klingon language, or Lord of the Rings fans learning to speak Elvish, or the train enthusiast that photographs all the locomotive engines in North America, it’s no different with living history buffs. […]

Honey Springs 150th Anniversary, Going Home – Part 4

After I finished checking out the 1960’s Series 88 inch, I got the Range Rover back on the road and sorted out my route home.

I wanted to head for Dripping Springs State Park. It is a heavily wooded park with a small but idyllic lake. I knew the trees had recently begun the change and thought I could get a couple of nice pictures. I started out of Rentiesville and headed north on a two lane blacktop N1040 aka North Broadway street. I took it up to what is called County Line Road  aka E1010 road. This road is the border between McIntosh (Wikipedia:History) and Muskogee (Wikipedia:History) counties.

It was a rutted dirt road and I thought it perfect for a “shakedown” of the Range Rover. This is a representative picture of what I drove for a dozen miles or so. […]

Honey Springs 150th Anniversary, Going Home – Part 3

Having thoroughly enjoyed the weekend and after bidding adieu to my friends it was time to turn the Range Rover west out of Rentiesville (Wikipedia) and get home to my 21st century life. It was the day of the 238th Marine Corps’ Birthday and Mrs. Okierover told me she had baked me a cake. What an awesome wife.

I told her I was going to take the long way home. I new the leaves were turning and I wanted to see Dripping Springs State Park with the leaves changing. But before I could get out of the Honey Springs National Battlefield site a quite unexpected surprise made me stop. […]

Honey Springs 150th Anniversary, Reenacting – Part 2

Artillery is in a man’s blood.
As a young man I served my nation in the United States Marine Corps Reserve. My military occupational specialty was 0811, basic artilleryman. We were also called gun-bunnies and other nicknames. As an 0811 I also trained to drive ammunition. Each howitzer has a truck and trailer following it. The bed and trailer are full of artillery shells and powder to propel those rounds down range to perforate our enemies in a very violent and decisive way. If you haven’t 6×6’ed with a couple of tons of artillery shells bouncing around in the bed of your truck, you are missing out.
There is a famous quote attributed to Fredrick the Great…

Artillery lends dignity to what might otherwise be a vulgar brawl.

I also like the quote by Marine General “Mad Dog” Mattis. Armies all over the world understand how artillery changes the battle. This quote was given to the Iraqi tribal leadership…
No more needs to be said about that.
So when given the opportunity to participate with the artillery, I was all in. […]

Honey Springs 150th Anniversary, Veteran’s Day Weekend – Part 1

Whit Edwards,
aka Thomas O’doule

Reenacting

I recently lost a long time friend, Whit Edwards, who was a great reenactor/historian/actor/friend. My first reenacting was with Whit and many other great historians serving in the 10th Kansas Company A. We had a great time. In 2003 with family responsibilities and an ever more troublesome spinal cord, I gave up Civil War reenacting.

With the passing of Mike Adkins a few years ago and now Whit’s passing this fall it just doesn’t hold the same magic as it once did. Thankfully a few members are left that remember the good old days and I dearly love to see them when I can. Unfortunately the last time I saw them all together was Whit’s funeral. They all encouraged me to come to Honey Springs this year.
Reluctant but needing to put the unpleasant feeling behind me I turned the Range Rover east on Friday evening to attend the event. […]