Hello there and welcome to the BMW Car Club of America.

If you are a BMW CCA member, please log in and introduce yourself in our Member Introductions section.

The Grand Tour

Discussion in 'North Central Region' started by elliottsb, Jun 22, 2011.

    • Member
    • Staff

    elliottsb BMW CCA Director of IT

    Post Count: 24
    Likes Received:3
    September 15-19, 2011: The Grand Tour

    You're cordially invited to join BMW CCA in "The Grand Tour," a four-day weekend extravaganza of the best the Midwest has to offer! As you trace the Lake Michigan shoreline, you'll revisit our rich transportation history, savor culinary gems, and unwind at premium resorts each night—not to mention exercising your BMW along scenic byways of Wisconsin and Michigan!

    The event launches from Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, on Thursday, September 15, 2011, with a choice of "destination" tours en route to Sturgeon Bay in beautiful Door County. Friday's destination is the historic Mackinac Island and history-making Mackinac Bridge. Saturday combines extraordinary driving roads, picturesque villages for shopping and sightseeing, and, of course, breathtaking vistas all day long. After spending the night at a secluded resort from a bygone era, Sunday, September 18, concludes at the incomparable Gilmore Car Museum, situated between Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, and Battle Creek.

    The event will offer you a choice of dining and lodging options to cater to individual tastes and budgets. You can choose to experience the entire event or selected portions of it, based on your personal schedule. You will travel a prescribed route in a small group, before converging for lunch or overnight stops. On Thursday you can choose among the EAA AirVenture Museum (Oshkosh), the Harley-Davidson Museum (Milwaukee), the Wisconsin Maritime Museum (Manitowoc), or the Kohler Design Center (Kohler). On Saturday you will be free to explore Harbor Springs, Petoskey, Charleviox, Traverse City, and other lakeshore villages at your own pace.

    To reserve resort-room blocks, group tours, and restaurants, please take a few moments to indicate which options interest you the most. The questionnaire contains links to venue websites to help you explore your options and tailor the tour to suit you. Click here to register http://bmwcca.motorsportreg.com/
    • Member

    autospiel North Central Region VP

    Post Count: 6
    Likes Received:0
    "The Grand Tour" Update #1

    "The Grand Tour" starts six weeks from today. (35) couples, individuals or families representing nearly every state in the North Central Region have registered to participate, with more to join us.

    In several respects this event is a "first of its kind," such as the extent to which participants can customize the driving tour to satisfy their personal wants and needs. To that end, this post includes some reminders and new information to help participants plan their trips.

    Participants are responsible for selecting and reserving their hotel and dining accommodations, which are listed in detail on the event website (http://www.wlrcreative.com/client_area/BMWCCA/grandtour-landing/). Hotel reservations should have already been made, and now is not too early for making dinner reservations, either, especially for the more acclaimed restaurants, which also tend to have smaller dining rooms.

    Participants can come and go as they please, on whatever schedule suits them. Many are participating in the entire event; others are participating on certain days. Likewise, some may rise early and hit the road; others may prefer to sleep in and get a leisurely start. Event sign-in will occur at the locations/times listed below, in order to receive route instructions and sign a liability waiver. You need only sign in once (the first day in which one participates). You may also email or text me to arrange an alternative sign-in location/time.

    Thursday, 9/15: Lake Geneva WI, Grand Geneva Resort, main lodge lobby, 7:00 - 10:00 a.m.

    Friday, 9/16: Sturgeon Bay WI, Bay Shore Inn, main lobby, 7:00 - 8:30 a.m.

    Saturday, 9/17: Traverse City MI, Cambria Suites, main lobby, 7:00 - 9:00 a.m.

    Sunday, 9/18: Traverse City MI, Cambria Suites, main lobby, 7:00 - 8:30 a.m.

    An event forum is available on the national website for participants to communicate with one another. One can, for example, poll the group to form a caravan to one of Thursday's museum destinations, or to arrange a small group dinner at a certain restaurant at a certain time.

    A pair of optional, half-day driving tours which begin and end in Traverse City are available on Saturday, September 17. One circumnavigates the picturesque Leelanau Peninsula northwest of Traverse City. The other explores the Old Mission Peninsula which bisects Grand Traverse Bay and is home to numerous wineries (many of which are open to the public).

    For those with the time and inclination Sunday, September 18, I highly recommend a visit to the Gilmore Car Museum on the way home. This one-of-a-kind museum brings to life the fantasy of discovering an antique car in a barn -- not just any old car in someone's dusty, cluttered barn, mind you, but collections of pristine cars thoughtfully grouped in a cluster of purpose-built barns on a manicured meadow in the countryside. The museum also features a 1930s gas station and an operating 1950s diner.

    Look for another post in about 3 weeks' time for additional event planning information.

    krumreyk guest

    Post Count: 1
    Likes Received:0
    possible to speak with someone about The Grand Tour?

    phone number to call with questions? my number (734) 478-0383 Karl
    • Member

    autospiel North Central Region VP

    Post Count: 6
    Likes Received:0
    Event Chair Contact Information

    Email is autospiel@att.net

    Phone/text is 317-513-0788. Preferred times to call prior to the week of the event are between 7pm & 10pm EDT; text anytime between 7am & 10pm
    • Member

    autospiel North Central Region VP

    Post Count: 6
    Likes Received:0
    Taliesin Museum Reservations

    To date (25) or more people have expressed interest in visiting Taliesin, Frank Lloyd Wright's home in Spring Green (west of Madison) on Thursday, September 15. Since tours often sell out in advance, space is being held for us for selected tours until Wednesday, September 7.

    There are (12) spaces for the 10:15 a.m. Highlights Tour, (12) spaces for the 11:00 a.m. House Tour, and (10) spaces for the noon House Tour. Please call the museum directly at 877-588-7900 to make your reservation; mention "BMW Car Club" when doing so. Cost is $47/person for the House Tour and $52/person for the Highlights Tour, plus $4 transaction fee per reservation. Reservations will be taken for our tour blocks on a first-come, first-served basis; there is additional space available for the 12:00 House Tour.

    Taliesin is 110 miles from the starting point in Lake Geneva, so please allow at least 2.5 hours' travel time.
    • Member

    autospiel North Central Region VP

    Post Count: 6
    Likes Received:0
    The Grand Tour Update #2

    Taliesin Museum Reservations (Thursday)

    More than 25 people have expressed interest in visiting Taliesin, Frank Lloyd Wright's home in Spring Green (west of Madison). Tours often sell out in advance, so space is being held for us for selected tours until Wednesday, September 7. There are (12) spaces for the 10:15 a.m. Highlights Tour, (12) spaces for the 11:00 a.m. House Tour, and (10) spaces for the noon House Tour. Please call the museum directly at 877-588-7900 to make your reservation, and mention "BMW Car Club". Cost is $47/person for the House Tour and $52/person for the Highlights Tour, plus $4 fee per reservation. Reservations will be booked on a first-come, first-served basis; there is additional space available for the 12:00 House Tour. Taliesin is 110 miles from the starting point in Lake Geneva, so please allow at least 2.5 hours' travel time.



    Other Wisconsin Museum Destinations (Thursday)



    Other museums offer self-guided tours, so no advance reservations are necessary. To date we have (18) going to the Kohler Design Center, (14) to the EAA AirVenture Museum, (7) to the Wisconsin Maritime Museum, and (5) to the Harley-Davidson Museum. (A few of you expressed interest in multiple museums, so figures are inexact.) Travel distances (times) from the Lake Geneva starting point to these destinations are as follows: 130 miles (2.5 hours) to the Kohler Design Center, 120 miles (>2.5 hours) to EAA AirVenture Museum, 160 miles (>3.5 hours) to the Wisconsin Maritime Museum, and 55 miles (1.5 hours) to the Harley-Davidson Museum.

    Friday Drive & Destinations

    While Thursday features disparate routes to each museum destination, Friday's route is common to all (as far as the Mackinac Bridge). The designated lunch destination, The Stonehouse Restaurant in Escanaba, Michigan, bustles from noon to 1:00 p.m., so those of you planning to visit the Fayette State Park and driving onward to Traverse City will want to get an early start that day (leave Sturgeon Bay well before 8:00 a.m. Central) to beat the lunchtime crowd. Everyone else is encouraged to leave Sturgeon Bay after 8:30, so as to arrive in Escanaba after the locals have finished lunch and returned to work. (The time changes from Central to Eastern during that morning's drive.) I recommend we travel in small groups, rather than a single large convoy, since the route is predominantly 2-lane highway north of Marinette, Wisconsin.

    The ideal opportunity for a group photo -- weather permitting, of course -- will be just before crossing the Mackinac Bridge Friday afternoon (another opportunity will be Sunday at the Gilmore Car Museum). There's a visitor center and large parking area immediately before the toll booths for the bridge. I'll set and communicate a photo meeting time prior to our departure from Escanaba. ~55 people (representing 27 cars) are planning to ferry to Mackinac Island for the night, while ~25 people (representing 13 cars) will drive onward to Traverse City.

    Traverse City (Saturday)

    Midwest Living Magazine rated Traverse City the Midwest's second best food city among metropolitan areas under 1 million residents, so expect to eat very well while in town. I encourage you to make your lunch and dinner reservations in advance, given the city is hosting a large soccer tournament that weekend. The region is also home to a burgeoning wine industry, which you can sample on one of two optional driving tours -- or without leaving town, depending on where you drink and dine. I'll designate a downtown watering hole where those so inclined can congregate after dinner Saturday night. One downtown attraction -- as a matinee or after dinner -- is the beautifully restored State Theatre. I'll let you know what's playing early next month, once they post their September schedule.

    Gilmore Car Museum (Sunday)

    Most of you have also expressed intent to visit the Gilmore on your way home Sunday (currently ~70 individuals in 35 cars). The museum is 200 miles (3.5 hours) from our starting point that morning in Traverse City, so plan on stopping for lunch en route in Grand Rapids or Plainwell, dining at the 1950s diner on the museum grounds, or packing a picnic lunch (tables available outside the diner). Assume we'll drive again in several small caravans, not one gigantic one.
    • Member

    autospiel North Central Region VP

    Post Count: 6
    Likes Received:0
    Additional Traverse City Eateries

    The Bay Leaf
    120 South Park Street, 231-421-5912
    http://www.mynorth.com/My-North/January-2011/The-Bay-Leaf-Traverse-City-039s-Newest-Restaurant/
    Outstanding choice for lunch or dinner; "my new favorite place" according to a trusted, well-traveled local.


    Patisserie Amie
    237 Lake Street, Suite 200; 231-922-9645
    http://record-eagle.com/entertainment/x75043676/Restaurant-Review-Patisserie-Amie
    Excellent choice for breakfast as well as lunch.

    Eurostop
    520 Railroad Avenue (near 8th Street), 231-421-1168
    http://www.eurostopcafe.com
    Another great choice for breakfast or lunch.
    • Member

    autospiel North Central Region VP

    Post Count: 6
    Likes Received:0
    Friday Drive: Optional Side Trip to Big Spring State Park

    One of the Grand Tour entrants who lives and drives in Michigan's Upper Peninsula recommends the following destination to break up the drive along the northern shores of Lake Michigan.

    A few miles east of the turnoff to Fayette State Park is the turnoff to the legendary Kitch-iti-kipi (Big Spring), Michigan's largest spring. This natural wonder is 200 feet across, 40 feet deep, and gushes over 16,000 gallons of crystal clear water per minute from fissures in the underlying limestone. The flow continues throughout the year at a constant 45 degrees. By means of a covered, self-operated observation raft, visitors are guided to vantage points overlooking underwater features, ancient tree trunks, lime-encrusted branches and oftentimes large trout that appear to be suspended in nothingness as they slip through the crystal clear waters below. Clouds of sand are kept in constant motion by gushing waters on the spring floor creating ever changing shapes and forms.

    Near the spring is a pleasant and shaded picnic area, modern toilet facilities and a park gift shop. This destination has been touted as one of Michigan's most beautiful wonders and will take less time to explore than Fayette State Park.

    Complete directions are as follows:

    1. Continue east on US-2 a few miles past Garden Corners (turnoff to Fayette State Park)
    2. Turn left (North) onto County Road 442 at Cooks. Continue to M-159
    3. Turn left (North) and follow the signs to Big Spring State Park

    The park is a total of (11) miles from the turnoff from US-2.
    • Member

    ChristopherG

    Post Count: 36
    Likes Received:5
    Gilmore is about 15 minutes from home for me and definitely not to be missed. The Bells Beer Eccentric Café is also a good place to check out in downtown Kalamazoo.

    Wish I could make it but my vacation time is already spoken for this year.
    • Member

    MGarrison

    Post Count: 2,843
    Likes Received:144
    All it would take to make that particular tour is adding a flux capacitor to your bimmer and going back in time two years.... Of course, adding time-travel capability to your car would make needing vacation time a moot point. Hmmm - not sure Back to the Future addressed that conundrum; if time travel were possible, and you could leave work at any time and know that you could be away for an infinite period of time and always return back to work the minute you left, nobody would ever have any incentive to get back to work because everybody would know that nobody would ever be missed.

    If the grand tour ever returns for a repeat engagement, maybe you can make that one; 'til then, if you find any flux capacitors lying around, I wanna see pics on the d-i-y install! :p
    • Member

    ChristopherG

    Post Count: 36
    Likes Received:5
    Oops got all excited about what looked to be a cool drive and didn't notice I was bumping a thread from the dead.
    • Member

    mrsbee

    Post Count: 511
    Likes Received:46
    Eh, who's to say it couldn't happen again? Start a movement!
    • Member

    mabeaton

    Post Count: 1
    Likes Received:0
    We just did the MINI on the Mack Rally with my wife's MINI over the Mackinac Bridge. Highly recommend getting out and driving Northern Michigan. We did the UP one day. Then, did the Tunnel of Trees (M119) from Mackinaw City to Traverse City and M22 tour the next day. 848.5 MINIs did the rally over the bridge. We need to do a BMW tour soon. We'd be up for it as well.

Share This Page