Wan-Na-Gos wanna stop in Vidalia

Published 1:09 am Sunday, April 13, 2008

VIDALIA— For some, retirement is a time for relaxation at home — for others it’s time to hit the road.

And the Wan-Na-Gos have brought hitting the road to an almost artistic level.

The Wan-Na-Gos are a regional club, made almost entirely of retirees, that travel around the country in Monaco Coach motorhomes.

Email newsletter signup

A Monaco is about the size of a Greyhound Bus and is decked-out like a five star hotel.

“It’s pretty high class,” said Joan Smith, sitting on the sofa in her Monaco.

Smith and her husband, Joel, have been “motorhomin’” as they call it for about 20 years.

And this week an entire herd of these Monacos, about 70, gathered on the River View Recreational Park in Vidalia.

The reason for the convergence — it’s rally time.

A rally is basically a mass joining of motorhomes in one place for no good reason but fun.

And when there’s a rally, almost no distance is too far to travel.

Participants in the Vidalia rally came from as far as Canada, several came from Texas, Illinois and Montana.

Jim Harris, rally master, and his wife Nancy came from Texas for the rally.

As rally master, Harris serves as a sort of coordinator for the event.

“It’s basically a big social gathering,” he said.

Harris said a typical rally normally consists of golfing for the men and shopping trips for the women.

“And we spend a lot of time talking about motorhomes,” he said.

The Harriss, like the Smiths, are longtime motorhome buffs.

They have been motorhomin’ for 15 years.

Harris said he and his wife spend several months per year on the road.

But all that time on the road doesn’t come cheap.

Harris said the average fuel tank on a Monaco carries between 100 and 200 gallons of diesel.

On Saturday a gallon of diesel in the Miss-Lou sold for about $3.97.

200 gallons of it costs $794.

But considering the Monaco starts around $165,000 and goes to somewhere shy of $1 million, the gas might not be the prohibitive aspect for most people.

But for the Wan-Na-Gos, money is only a small price to pay for the freedom of life on the road.

“You just get in and go,” Smith said. “It’s great.”