Posted by: fergy1008 | January 14, 2014

New Tours through Team Strange

written by: Angela Ferguson

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Team Strange is a “club” run entirely by volunteers who put on events to support Eddie’s Road, a charitable foundation run by volunteers who work to raise money to change the lives of abused and neglected children. Since their inception, over 700 riders, covering the spectrum of motorcycle brands and riding styles, have participated in their various Grand Tours (GTs). They host truly open GTs for all those who love to ride. Their GTs, generally, can be completed in a single state or province, or can include every province and territory in Canada and every state in the U.S., for those who enjoy long distance challenges.

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Last year we participated in, but did not complete, their Smoke Chasing Grand Tour. This BBQ themed self-paced grand tour was designed to combine a love of great food and great riding. It only required a minimum of 20 BBQ/”Smoke” stops to be considered a finisher but, while we visited several locations, we didn’t get enough to “finish”. This was due to lack of effort rather than difficulty.

The goal was to take a picture of your rally flag and bike in front of any restaurant, store, street or city limits sign where the word “BBQ”, “smoke” or an approved variation thereof appeared. They also incorporated bonuses called “Side Dishes” which ranged from challenging to unusual and quirky.  These varied from “Getting to Know You” where you had to take a photo with a restaurant staff member, to “Can’t Believe I Ate the Whole Thing!” where you submit a picture of you, your GT flag and your plate of food, to the fun “The Cat in the BBQ Hat” where you take a picture of the standard motorcycle, GT Flag, an appropriate BBQ/Smoke sign along with a cup, some milk, a cake, books, a fish, a rake, a toy ship, a little toy man, a red fan, a ball, and an umbrella. I think there were about 15 Side Dishes with a variety of points possible, some with limited date ranges.  The event was quite fun, it just got a little lost in the shuffle of all the tours we were doing.
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I just found out that , this year, the Smoke Chasing tour is on hiatus while Team Strange, instead, hosts their 30th Anniversary “Memory Lane” Grand Tours (http://www.teamstrange.com/2014/grandtours/index.htm).  This series includes 4 different tours – you can join from one to all four events. When you sign up for one GT you are allowed discounted entry into the other GTs, each with its own unique rules and challenges that qualify you for the prize pools.  The more GTs you complete the more prizes you can win.  Registration will close when they run out of GT flags so sign up sooner rather than later.  All of them run March 1st through October 31st. I think we’ll be doing just two of them…


Team Strange 30th Anniversary Grand Tour

The goal: spell out the phrase “Team Strange Airheads 30” using photos of city limit signs and a Highway 30 sign.
This is one of the tours we plan on doing.  There are three different ways to approach this tour but we’ll be using the straight forward Challenge #1 “Traditional Grand Tour” method of submitting photos using a town that starts with the letter T (example: Tarantula, AZ), followed by a town that starts with the letter E (example: Eagan, MN) etc., concluding with a photo of a highway 30 sign. I’ve already confirmed that, as long as we can find the city limit signs, we’ll be able to easily complete this tour while visiting locations for other tours in which we’re participating. Finishing will earn us a Team Strange 30th Anniversary pin and we’ll be eligible for Memory Lane prize pool #1 – a $250 gift certificate.

You can also sign up to complete this by Challenge #2, visiting a city in a different state for each letter or Challenge #3, by visiting the fewest number of town names to spell out the phrase by using city names that have more than one letter, in the correct order, to spell “Team Strange Airheads 30.” (So for example, if your first stop is Tea, South Dakota, you have already spelled the first three letter of the challenge.) Competing in either of these challenges provides you with the opportunity to be included in other prize pools.

I’ve Been Everywhere Grand Tour
The goal: visit at least 25 of the 92 places mentioned in the Johnny Cash song, which will earn you a limited edition 30th Anniversary finisher’s pin and entry into the Team Strange Memory Lane Prize Pool #1 for a $250 Gift Certificate.
Interestingly, this also happens to be a category of the BMR this year.  While we’ll be visiting a few of these locations to get points for that tour, with our riding style and schedule of availability, there’s no way we could get enough to qualify as finishers for Team Strange so we won’t be signing up for this one.  There are additional prize pools for those who reach 50, 75 and all 92 locations mentioned.

Presidential Grand Tour
The goal: score at least 25 points from Presidential cities, counties, and/or the defined bonuses.
This is another tour we’ll be participating in as I believe we have within our riding range a possible 31 points.  Each city or county is worth 1point. 4 points apiece (up to 5 locations) for every presidential birthplace, 10 points for each “Big Bonus” location (Mt. Rushmore, Nixon Library, Washington Monument, Washington state limit sign (we’ll get this one!), the Eisenhower Tunnel and the Lyndon B Johnson National Historic Park.  For the “Really, Really Big Bonus” you can earn 30 points apiece for a photo of you with any living current or ex-US President. 25 points will get you finisher status and earn you a limited edition Team Strange 30th anniversary pin and an entry into the Team Strange Memory Lane Prize Pool #1 for $250 Gift Certificate. There are additional prize pool entries at the 70, 100 and 150 point levels.

Touch ‘em All Baseball Grand Tour
The goal: earn a finishing score of 15 points or more by visiting stadium/ballpark/fields of Major or Minor League Baseball worth a point each. There are 5 additional bonus locations worth 3 points each and 15 points for a photo of you, your motorcycle (if possible), rally flag, and Mr. Bud Selig. Finishing will get you an Official Team Strange 30th Anniversary pin and an entry into the Team Strange Memory Lane Prize Pool #1 for a $250 Gift Certificate.  Like the other tours, there are additional prize opportunities at higher levels. Again, there’s no way we could achieve finisher status for this one so we will not be signing up.

Definitely looking forward to finishing this year… off I go to add more pins to our planning map!


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