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Author Topic: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!  (Read 30062 times)

SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #120 on: June 22, 2016, 08:48:32 PM »
Prophetstown State Park
5545 Swisher Road
West Lafayette, IN

We pulled into Prophetstown and were amazed at what a nice park it is. We wound up staying in two different sites during our stay. The first 4 days we were in an electric only site that looked over a huge field. There was plenty of room between sites, and the plentiful grass was neatly mowed and trimmed. The site was a gravel back in but there was a nice size rock patio attached. The electric only sites are in the second loop, and are not as heavily treed as the full hook up sites.  We paid $30 a night for the electric only site.

The last 3 days we moved to a full hook up site.  They are much more private than the electric only sites, as they are surrounded on 3 sides with tall trees and shrubs. While is is good for privacy, the tall trees tend to block the much needed afternoon breezes that help out with the heat and humidity. The full hook up sites were about $10 more a night. Interesting though, when we moved sites it was nice having  full hookups, but our internet service dropped to near zero.  I was able to raise the mast on the WiFi antenna and recapture our lost cell signal.  We are camping, but we still want to be connected!

There is a large field in back of the sites that has hiking and biking trails running through it. We walked and ran on the trails several times. At night it was fun to come out at night after the sun had finally set (after 9 PM) and gaze into the field at the thousands of fire flies hovering just about the marshy grass.

At this site we were at the end of the second loop, and the Verizon air card worked well. I took advantage of the park restrooms/showers. They were top notch, private with closing and locking doors on  the showers, and all the free hot water you could want.  All facilities are handicapped accessible.

This park is highly recommended.

Maumee Bay State Park
1400 State Park Road
Oregon, OH
We rolled in Ohio to see some of Diane's family in the area, and stayed at another state park. This one is in the north west corner of the state,  just northeast of Toledo. This is also a very nice state park.  All sites are electric only, but there is water and a dump station available.  The sites are long, narrow and paved. Unfortunately there are no patio's though to set up your chairs on. There is great space between the sites though. 

This is a full featured state park as well. Besides the usual hiking and biking trails, there is fishing, golf, boat rentals, and  even a full on water park that features water slides, pool and various kid themed soaker attractions.  There is also a lodge with a full restaurant and bar. We ate there one night with family and it was pretty good.

All facilities are handicapped accessible as well. Our Verizon air card worked here, but again I  needed to extend the antenna mast to get a strong reliable signal for the WiFi. The only real drawback was that the sites are only 30 amp electric. Normally that is sufficient, but when the heat kicks in it would be nice to run both AC units. We paid $29 a night.


Geneva State Park
4449 Padanarum Road
Geneva, OH

After leaving northwest Ohio, we headed to northeast Ohio to see my family. Again we stayed at another state park. This place had some similarities with Maumee Bay, the sites were paved back in's and a lot grass surrounding the pads.

Lots of tall trees required breaking out the portable satellite dish to get Direct TV signal. However, I discovered an app for my Android phone a while back that makes finding the satellites in the sky pretty easy.  It's called “Satellite AR”. It's pretty easy to use. It has a menu that lists about 30 different satellites. You select the one you want to find, in this case Direct TV. It loads the intended satellite(s) by  showing them on your phones screen.  Tap the one you want, then point the rear camera towards the sky and follow the directional arrow until you see your satellites on the screen. Since you are using the phone's camera, you will see if anything is in the path of the satellite.  If so, just move your position until you can see the satellites with no obstructions.  Using the app I can usually have the portable set up in about 5 minutes.   

This state park is set up in 2 loops. The first loop has just a restroom, but the second loop has restrooms and a shower house.  If you stay in the first loop, it's a bit of a hike to the shower house.  Here once again, the cell signal was pretty bad.  Even raising the mast only allowed weak WiFi signal at best.  It was better in the early morning and late evenings though. The restroom and shower facilities are handicapped accessible. 

There is a beach area not far from the campground and a walking/biking path that goes there. Dogs are allowed on the west end of the beach area. It was pretty popular and busy all during our stay.

We paid $31 a night for the site. All are back in's. There are some sites that are set aside for “walk in's only” and not reserve-able.   We were here over Father's Day weekend. As expected Friday and Saturday were packed, but on Sunday the place emptied out and stayed that way up til we left on Wednesday.

From here we move on to Pennsylvania to meet up with a buddy of mine I used to work with. He was born and raised there and will show us around a bit.



 
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WILDEBILL308

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #121 on: June 22, 2016, 10:17:54 PM »
It sounds like you are making good progress and having some fun to.
We finally got on the road. Tonight we are at the Amana Colonies campground in Amana IA. Large place carved out of a corn field with 450 campsites.
 Had a little change of plan and will be going East to Erie for a short visit with family. Going to visit the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library tomorrow then head East. Next stop is Hickory Hollow Campground not far from Lasalle Illinois. Then on to Johnny Appleseed Campground,Fort Wayne, IN. Then on to Virginia’s Beach west of Erie.
Looking forward to hearing your updates and reviews.
Bill
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jagnweiner

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #122 on: June 23, 2016, 06:57:44 AM »
Bill, you'll drive right by me today on your way to LaSalle.  Then I'll pass you EARLY tomorrow morning as we are starting our eastern trip. I'll wave on my way by Hickory Hollow.  You'll see a little bit of road construction on 80 today, but its not too bad. You can avoid a lot of it if you take 280 around the south side of the Quad Cities instead of 80.
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #123 on: June 23, 2016, 07:17:53 AM »
Sounds like a good trip Bill. It's good to get out on the road and get rolling. 

You'll see a little bit of road construction on 80 today, but its not too bad.

That's one thing we have hit lots of on this trip is TONS of road construction everywhere. Many states much be playing catch up after the winter.
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WILDEBILL308

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #124 on: June 23, 2016, 08:47:54 AM »
Road construction is just a fact of life in the north where they only have a few months to get work done. Hopefully they can fix some of the bridge transitions. Apparently that is a lot harder than it look's.
Bill
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #125 on: June 26, 2016, 01:50:07 PM »
For those interested, Diane just updated her blog.
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #126 on: June 26, 2016, 09:35:00 PM »
Allegheny River Campground
Roulette, Pennsylvania 
1737 US-6 W
We were looking for a campground near our friend Mike's place in Couredersport, PA. This was the most fully equipped park near the town. It is about 8 miles west of town along the Allegheny River.  The campground is on the river, and you can fish or tube the river right from the campground property. It is a family owned park, and the owners take a lot of pride in keeping the facilities in good shape.

There is tons of grass in the campground, but the owners mow at least twice a week and it always looks sharp.  The RV pads themselves could use a healthy dose of fresh gravel though. The gravel is a bit sparse, so the grass is taking over most of the parking pads.  There is a dirt/gravel area next to the sites that would be a patio area, but it too needs some more gravel.

Curiously the 50 amp full hook up sites are at the front of the park near the road, and there is 10-12 of them. Most of the rest of the sites are W/E only, and are accessed through a remote control gate that are closer to the river.  Even many of the seasonal's which are close to the river have no sewer access. 

There is a decent size pool that looks to be new up by the 50 amp sites. The restrooms are clean and handicapped accessible. Again I needed to raise the antenna mast to get a usable signal for the WiFi to work well. The campground does offer free WiFi for general surfing and email. We paid $40 a night, which was a bit pricey for the amenities offered.

With all the activities and hanging out with my buddy, we forgot to get pics of the campsite. One interesting note though. When we were on Highway 6 headed for the campground, a pickup truck following me pulled out to pass us.  As he came back in our lane he was moving pretty fast, like 60+ mph.  As I am watching him pull back in front of me, a black bear about 200 pounds darted from the opposite side of the street running full speed.  It cut directly across our path, in front of the speeding pick up, which didn't slow down a bit.  The bear made it to the side of the two lane road, ducking under the guard rail with the truck bumper inches from it's rear end. I guess if you live surrounded by animals, the stray streaking bear is not too unusual. 

Cooperstown KOA
565 Ostrander Road
Richfield Spring, NY 13439

We picked another KOA for our visit to Cooperstown. This particular KOA is under new ownership and the new owners are trying hard to make some improvements.  There is a ways to go though, the sites are pretty un-level both side to side and back to front. They are also in need of new gravel to cover the dirt.  There is no dedicated pet walk area, but there are large fields adjoining the park that I saw others walking their pets in. It's not RV park property, but may belong to a nearby farmer.  The gravel on the interior roads is a bit better, but not all of them have been finished. We paid $50 a night, which included the typical KOA discount.

The park has handicapped accessible restrooms, and offers free Wifi. However our Verizon air card worked well without having to raise the antenna mast. We did get an end site, #60 that gave us quite a bit of room on our patio side.

They do try to have activities for the kids though, like a tractor ride, and a bounce house for the little ones.  On weekends an Amish woman comes into the office with fresh baked bread and pastries for sale.  This probably is one of the best locations for visiting Cooperstown and the Baseball Hall of Fame (HOF). As expected, when the new “inductees” are added to the HOF in July, the park is sold out.

This park is only about 8 miles from Cooperstown, and there is a lot more to see and do there than just the HOF. It is a very interesting little town with a variety of shops, restaurants, and attractions. All though many are themed with various forms of Baseball content, it is still an interesting town to explore.  We of course also toured the HOF, which was a bit pricey.  Adult admission was $23 each, but a hand stamp allowed egress in and out of the hall all day long.  We probably spent a few hours looking at all of the exhibits, from baseballs humble beginning to current day players and everything in between. And we are just baseball fans, I am sure the hardcore fans or fanatics could spend hours. I did have to buy a new baseball hat for my favorite team, go Angels!!   
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Steve N Dee

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #127 on: July 02, 2016, 11:55:37 AM »
Thanks for the pics Marty, especially of Cooperstown.  That's a bucket list item for me if we can ever get that far east.  Probably not till retirement.  Appears we are crosstown rivals, Go Dodgers!

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WILDEBILL308

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #128 on: July 02, 2016, 02:26:25 PM »
Well I made it to the Chautauqua Lake KOA in western NY. After this we head west. Hope you have a great 4th and remember our military and all first responders.
Bill
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #129 on: July 02, 2016, 05:23:05 PM »
Appears we are crosstown rivals, Go Dodgers!

Actually I am a Dodger lover too. The boys in blue, and the boys in red! 

Hope you have a great 4th and remember our military and all first responders.
Bill

Thanks Bill, you too. Be safe out there on the roads this 4th of July weekend.  We are planted in Massachusetts for the long holiday weekend.  The weather is beautiful right now!
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WILDEBILL308

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #130 on: July 02, 2016, 07:46:14 PM »
Where in Massachusetts? We are staying put till after the 4th then start west.Can't complain about the weather here as the hi was 72 nice breeze.
I was reading your wife's blog and Thought you mite find it amusing that we spent some time in Ashtabula. They have done a good job renovating Bridge street. I thought the lift bridge was a design I don't think I have ever seen before. By the way Grindhouse Gourmet Burgers is a good place to eat.
Down in Conneaut at the harbor try Breakwall BBQ.
It was fun exploring the area. I have a sister in Erie so we spent some time there to.   
Bill
« Last Edit: July 02, 2016, 08:13:46 PM by WILDEBILL308 »
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WILDEBILL308

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #131 on: July 02, 2016, 07:49:12 PM »
Bill, you'll drive right by me today on your way to LaSalle.  Then I'll pass you EARLY tomorrow morning as we are starting our eastern trip. I'll wave on my way by Hickory Hollow.  You'll see a little bit of road construction on 80 today, but its not too bad. You can avoid a lot of it if you take 280 around the south side of the Quad Cities instead of 80.
Thanks for the heads up, took 280 and didn't have any problems.
Bill
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #132 on: July 02, 2016, 08:42:30 PM »
We are in Normandy Farms in Foxboro at the time Bill. Gotta check out Boston after the holiday.
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Sr Fox

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #133 on: July 02, 2016, 08:53:26 PM »
Marty, we are about 80 miles South of you near Colonial Beach, VA.  Also sitting it out until after the 4th.  Back on the road headed North on the 5th.
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #134 on: July 02, 2016, 09:11:11 PM »
Yep, better to stay planted until all the weekenders are home. Makes travel a whole lot easier.
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WILDEBILL308

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #135 on: July 02, 2016, 09:29:32 PM »
One thing to see is the USS Constitution better known as "old ironsides".
http://www.thefreedomtrail.org/freedom-trail/uss-constitution.shtml
Some place else is The Old South Meeting House.
http://www.osmh.org/
and the Freedom Trail.
http://www.thefreedomtrail.org/
Downtown Boston is a National Walking Park. If you go to the park service office next to The Old South Meeting House you may be able to get a free touer. When you face the meeting house the parkservice office is in the alley to your left.
Have fun
Bill
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Sr Fox

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #136 on: July 02, 2016, 09:54:43 PM »
Yep, better to stay planted until all the weekenders are home. Makes travel a whole lot easier.

Yep.  Which direction are you headed next?
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #137 on: July 03, 2016, 07:21:30 AM »
From here we head up to Boothbay Maine. We have 3 stops in Maine.
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Sr Fox

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #138 on: July 03, 2016, 07:36:04 AM »
Looks like we are about a week or so behind you.  :)
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #139 on: July 03, 2016, 08:04:29 AM »
We will leave the lights on for you!
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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #140 on: July 03, 2016, 11:13:57 AM »
Marty, while in Boston don't forget to stop in at the Sam Adams Brewery for a tour next "samples," if that's your kinda thing...keep in mind you can get awful thirsty walking those streets in Beantown!  We're headed that way, too but won't be in MA until 1st week in August (even got tickets for a Red Sox game), then headed up through Maine and into St. John, NB. I'll be really interested in reading your comments bout the cg' you stay at. Safe travels in "my neck of the woods."
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #141 on: July 03, 2016, 12:41:04 PM »
Wow, awesome idea Steve! I love Sam Adams! We will add that to the must do list!
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jagnweiner

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #142 on: July 03, 2016, 03:00:39 PM »
Yep, better to stay planted until all the weekenders are home. Makes travel a whole lot easier.


Made it from Acadia down to Newport RI yesterday, traveling around Boston. Traffic actually wasn't too. bad.
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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #143 on: July 03, 2016, 06:57:27 PM »
Marty,


Ken and Sheila Kuch arrived at Normandy Farms today.

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #144 on: July 03, 2016, 09:41:08 PM »
Jagnweiner, where did you sty in Acadia? We need to meet friends at end of Appalachian Trail by mid-August. Any input welcomed.
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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #145 on: July 03, 2016, 09:50:33 PM »
Steve/Linda-

We stayed at the Schoodic Woods campground that is brand new and run by the NPS. It is absolutely beautiful and Loop B is suitable for big rigs. It is on the Schoodic Peninsula and is about a 35 mile drive from Bar Harbor. Probably would be tough to get in this August though.  It is reservation only and seems to fill up. Wouldnt hurt to check though.

I'll do a full review when we get back home and im not typing on my phone.
-Scott
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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #146 on: July 04, 2016, 06:35:39 AM »
Marty,

Ken and Sheila Kuch arrived at Normandy Farms today.

We arrived yesterday coming from Liberty Harbor. We had a great time in NYC, Philly and DC. This stop is primarily for family, but will go into Boston to see the changes since we left New England (Vermont) in 1997. Next stop, Portland Maine (Fred and Daisy), then Belfast and Bar Harbor.

Marty, we'll be happy to share info on NYC and DC if your interested.

ken
« Last Edit: July 04, 2016, 06:42:21 AM by Ken & Sheila »
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SargeW

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #147 on: July 04, 2016, 08:30:21 AM »
Thanks Ken, we will keep that in mind.
« Last Edit: July 04, 2016, 08:37:52 AM by SargeW »
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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #148 on: July 09, 2016, 09:09:41 PM »
Salisbury Beach State Recreation Area
State Reservation Road
Salisbury, MA 01952
For our first stop in Massachusetts we went to the beach.  Salisbury Beach State Reservation Area to be exact.   This is a huge park with 481 sites with water and electric, which are mostly 30 amp, but there are some 50 amp sprinkled around. There is a dump station on site.  The sites are paved as are the roads. Each site has paved patio attached as well.  If you come here, bring lots of water hose, at least 50' and maybe an extension for your electric cord.  All of the utilities are lined up in a row at the very back of the sites, and separate the rows.  As such the water pressure is pretty low, so you may have to fill the water tank on the rig and use your on board water pump to get a good shower.

The beach is nice, and there is access to a bay area where dogs are allowed on leash, and the beach area as well if it after 5 PM.  There is a small store/concession stand in the middle of the park that has a few camping necessities.  There are no-see-ums here, which I  learned early the second morning as we were outside working out. That was about 10 days ago and I am still sporting all the little red dots on my legs. The breeze's at the beach every afternoon are really refreshing though.

There is a lot of extra parking around the beach as it is a public access beach. That also means a lot of  folks walking around the beach and  campground area, so make sure that your stuff is secured when  you are away for a length of time. If you are into boating there is also a public boat ramp connected to the campground. The location is pretty much in town, so trips to pick of supplies is fairly easy.   

We paid $33 a night for the park, which isn't too bad for a campground by the beach. There are no real water views, but the beach is only a few minutes walk from your campsite. We did get Verizon signal at the campsite for the WiFi, but the antenna tower was across the bay, so signal could be a bit sketchy depending on the time of day. The restrooms are handicapped accessible,  but they are a bit on the old side.  We camped next to a gentleman who camp hosts at the park. There are several camp hosts, which  stay from 1 to 4 weeks at a time. Since none of the sites have sewer, there is a honey wagon that will come around to pump you out for $15 if you desire. 

Normandy Farms
72 West Street
Foxboro, MA 02035

This is a very highly rated park, and with many good reasons. There is an extensive list of amenities for family's and kids to keep them busy all day long. Some of them include 4 different pools, a Frisbee golf course, a bike park with hills and ramps, soccer and baseball fields, and planned activities.  There is an adult lounge for hanging out and socializing, and a work out room. 

They do keep a tight reign on who goes in and out though. A manned gate with keypads require you to punch in a code to get or out.  Children are required to wear wrist bands at  all times when in the park, and are also required  to wear helmets when bike riding (very loosely monitored).

We were here over the 4th of July holiday, so the park was sold out. The sites are decent size, but Diane is always on the look out when reserving a camp site, scored an end site for us, #811. If you get an end site on the curb side there is a big grassy corner area for you to hang out on.

Now my only real gripe about the park, we paid a good price for a “premium” site, $71 a night for week stay, came out to $499 for the week.  I  was dismayed to see that all the roads and sites in the park are gravel and dirt. This can  make for a real dusty day when sitting outside if cars fail to observe the posted 9 mph speed limit.  Three of the higher number rows, 1100 – 1300 have concrete patios on their sites. But they are priced the same as the all dirt site that we had. About 60% of the sites are labeled “premium”, but there are other levels of sites with 30 amp power, or just water and electric only.

Even the new sites the park  is adding will be just gravel pads.  Too bad. Our Verizon air card worked OK here, but I  needed to  raise the antenna  mast to get a better signal for dependable WiFi.  I imagine a lot of effort for the WiFi was sheer number of folks trying to be on line at one time.  The park does have free WiFi that I did use occasionally. The restrooms are handicapped accessible and clean.

We were also about 4 miles down the road from “Patriot Place”. That is Gillette Stadium where the New England Patriots play. They have done a good job with the stadium area though. There is a huge commercial area  surrounding the stadium with lots of  different stores and restaurants to choose from. On the last day in town we took in a movie at the cinema there. It was a pretty upscale movie house, and the prices  reflected that too.

We ventured into Boston a few days to see the city. On the advice of Steve (Steve and Linda on the forum) we went to the Sam Adams brewery for a tour on July 4th during the day. The brewery was cool, and the samples were even better. On the advice of our tour guide we went to lunch at “Doyle's”.   Great food, and a historic location.  Doyle's also runs, or is affiliated with a “party style” tour bus that takes you around Boston.  Since we were already there we took the tour.  The “party style bus” meant that your favorite beverages were allowed on the bus, and between stopping  at various historic sites around Boston, the driver was blasting classic rock-n-roll on the buses audio system. It was fun, but I wouldn't  recommend it for someone looking for a “conservative, sedate” tour of Boston.  We had fun though, and it lasted about 2  hours and was $25 a person. Tips  are optional.

No real issues with the RV lately, things have  been working pretty will.  That is up until “the great AC filter debacle”.  I already made a post on it on the forum, so I won't repeat it here.  But here is the link if you need a chuckle. http://www.rvforum.net/SMF_forum/index.php/topic,96256.msg868093/topicseen.html#new

 Over all we really enjoyed Massachusetts, and next we head up into Maine.  And Diane has just updated her blog with more in depth info on our stops. 
Marty--
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40SP
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blw2

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Re: The Maine and Eastern Seaboard Trip, Just the Facts, Maam!
« Reply #149 on: July 14, 2016, 03:02:14 PM »
Marty
I have to say, your posts and Diane's blog are really inspiring me..... as I dream about retiring "early".

I read with interest your posts for last year's trip.... and now this one.  The lifestyle, the pace that you are making, they types of stuff you're doing along the way is right up our alley I think.  Hit a few museums and attractions along the way, check some local restaurants, enjoy a beer now and then.... PERFECT!

Just this morning, i received a statement for one of my retirement accounts, and on it there was a link to one of those calculators.  I was plugging in some what if numbers, just to get an idea.... and I was thinking about your trip.  I realized that I'm going to have to sit down and try to get a better idea of how much the monthly expenses are for doing some extended RV trips like you're doing.  I'm just about to hit 50, and I am oh so ready to do it, but with young kids I'm in a different boat.

In the meantime, I'm living vicariously.
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
’13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

 

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