MGA Mid-Atlantic Chapter

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2009 Fourth of July Social

July 4, 2009

Our Chapter's social event for the month of July was a July 4th party at the home of Bill & Karen Marshall. Taking advantage of the City of Manassas hosting Celebrate America in Old Town Manassas and providing the largest fireworks display in Northern Virginia for our "personal" viewing, we could not plan a better way to celebrate that most British of sports cars, the MGA. Temperatures were mild and humidity was low and we were left with perfect weather to enjoy the outdoor event.

We had a nice turn-out of Chapter members with Butch & Judy Smith taking time from GT-34 packing to attend, bringing their overnight guest, Martha Ludtke, along with them. Larry & Diana Newman made the drive from Maryland; Keith Kallaops, without vacationing Kathy, arrived in style driving his MGA; Liz Ten Eyck arriving with fellow GT-34 traveler Betty Ann Johns and her sister-in-law, Linda Quinn, in tow; Ken & Joyce Lawrence; Steve & Nancy Woodall (who demonstrated her culinary skills prepping her crab dish before our very eyes); Bill & Kathy Wemhoff; and Bob Schoeplein & Jane Howard arriving in Jane’s MGB. Bob and Jane also took time to visit the Celebrate America festivities going on in Old Town during their first visit to Manassas. We always enjoy when new or long-lost members show for social functions and we hope Jim Mackin was made comfortable by the gang and will attend on a more regular basis.

Food and drink was not a concern as many delicious appetizers were provided by Chapter members and traditional Fourth of July fare was cooked on the grill. We welcomed the return of Mike & Amanda Marshall with our granddaughter Emma, who were visiting from Texas – and once again were assigned the role of Grillmasters to ensure our burgers and 'dogs were cooked to perfection.

As dusk turned to night, we gathered in the front yard in eager anticipation of the explosions that would soon fill the sky in celebration of our nation's birth. We enjoyed the City's colorful fireworks display and at the end of the show were surprised by Karen, who provided sparklers for our group. Many commented it had been years since they had ended a Fourth of July with that most American of childhood traditions. This fact was reinforced by the difficulty in coordinating the adults, with sparklers sparkling, to pose for a group picture. Many appeared to be years-away as they wrote their names or conjured imagery in the night sky with their flaming sticks trailing streaks of light.

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