May 2013: 20th Dam Gathering at Shasta Lake
20th Dam Gathering
Shasta Lake has a history of special meaning for me. In the 60’s and 70’s, my family would load the station wagon and the boat with camping and water skiing gear and join several other family and friends at Antler’s RV Campground at the north end of Lake Shasta for a week or two of sun, fun and water skiing. But that is not what this is about. It is about the first Teardrop gathering Joe and I attended. A bit intimidating for two “less than social” humans. But, for me, being held at Antler’s RV Campground, it was like going home, so I was game. The people at the gathering were so welcoming and friendly; it really did feel more like a home coming and not at all intimidating. This is our 6th year. We socialize with fellow teardrop friends, enjoy getting to know new friends, and never tire of stories from teardrop builders and travel adventures.
This year was the blowout year as the oldest teardrop gathering put on by Grant Whipp and Kay Cortapassi; it started 20 years ago, held at a Shasta Dam campground (thus the name, Dam Gathering) with eight teardrops. Evidentially, the gathering outgrew the space and found some dear folks at Antlers RV campground who welcomed the growing numbers of teardrops attending. I heard the unofficial count was around 170 teardrop trailers with 8 small trailers and a tent or two in the mix.
This year was the last “organized, pre-registered, activity filled” gathering. There was a get to know each other bingo game, pinewood teardrop gravity races, vote for your favorite various teardrop categories, T-shirts, plaques, buttons, games and activities for the kids, the wine, beer, and cheese social (I’m not a drinker, but now enjoy a glass of chocolate wine), the Next Cast Iron Chef cook-off and potluck, Saturday Night Campfire & Chili Cookout” and pot luck, raffle, live music, a roast to Grant, bon fires and if that wasn’t enough, a teardrop trailer built in 4 days by the 5-wide club of Cloverdale (and yes, they finished it) and a beautiful wedding of fellow tear droppers who host the IRG at the Pamplin Grove, Joanie and Dean.
The Dam Gathering continues, but going forward, tear droppers make their own reservations with Antlers campground and the only so-called planned activity will be the usual Saturday night potluck. So, if you are new at this and want to come join the fun and fellowship of the most friendly and amazing droppers, make your reservation for the first weekend in May (although many come for the week) at Antlers RV Campground at Lake Shasta. We will see you there. Teardrop Leslie