In October of 16 we met up with Kelly's great friend Kristin from college at a halfway point between NJ and VT...Chatham, NY. We found a great little mountain house through AirBnB and spent a few nights catching up and letting the kiddos play. Such a great time!
How about that view? Worth every penny!
We took a hike to Bish Bash Falls, right on the border of NY and MA. You can actually hike into the falls from either state.
How awesome is this photo of the kiddos soaking in the view?
Can't wait to get back up this way again!
Oh...we tried to get one last photo of the kids before we shoved off...Mason wanted NO part of it!
It's never too early to start thinking about the 2017 Pan Mass Challenge...I know I already am. The coming ride will mark my 10th since starting back in 2006. It should also bring me close to having raised over $60,000 for the Dana Farber Cancer Institute over that time period. Pretty impressive donors I've got, that's for sure!
4:30am on PMC Saturday in 2006...ready to roll! I was hooked the minute we rolled across the starting line!
Back to the ride...many of you have said "I'd love to do the PMC with you one day man" and maybe its out there on your bucket list as something you really want to do. Here's the deal, I'm going to take a break from the PMC after this next ride and focus on a few charity rides a bit closer to home. So if you've ever thought about doing it, 2017 is the year! [or if you've done it before and want to do it again?] I'm going to do the full 2-day, 200 mile ride from Sturbridge, MA to Provincetown, MA. We'll then spend a few days on the Cape. [anyone have a place they want to let us borrow for a few nights? ] There are plenty of other Team Xaverian folks doing some of the 1-day rides, so if that's more your speed, we've got you covered!
Check out PMC.org for more info and certainly leave a comment here and I can answer it. Is the fundraising minimum a challenge? Sure is! Is the 200 miles of bike riding over 2 days a challenge? Sure is! That's why its called the Pan Mass Challenge! But trust me, you'll have one of the best weekends of your life and you'll know that you are playing one of the most critical roles in cancer research in this country. Its something to be very proud of!
PMC 2016 departing from Babson College
[I'm also going to ride the 100 mile Climb to the Clouds out to and up Mt. Wachusett which is typically 2-weeks before the PMC. Anyone interested in that?]
Had the great opportunity to see one of my best buddies assume command of the USS Oklahoma City a few weeks back out at Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego. Since this was just a quick out and back weekend trip we flew solo...girls stayed behind and camped in Nana's camper!
Made a b-line for the airport right after work on Thursday afternoon...
First stop...Ballast Point Brewery for a cold one with some of the crew. Stepping off the plane into the cooler, non-humid air of San Deigo felt sooo good!
The next morning we were up early...had to get some breakfast at a great spot, The Broken Yolk, right across the street from our hotel in the Gaslamp before heading over to the naval base for the Change of Command Ceremony.
Not a bad backdrop for a ceremony. These are normally done on the submarine, but since she's in dry dock right now getting a full overhaul they had to do it on land.
Not too shabby a spot for a post ceremony reception!
There's the actual OKC...she's in floating dry-dock, up on cinder blocks and no propeller right now!
Stopped for drive-thru burritos on our way back downtown!
Got some dinner and great Mexican with much of the crew later at night too...
We spent much of Saturday over on Coronado, pretty much just hanging out on the beaches and in town. What a great area! Not before a nice run along the waterfront and a hearty breakfast at Cafe 222!
A few shots while riding over the bridge from downtown to Coronado.
First stop was a stroll along the beach the Navy Seal's use for training...pretty cool to be essentially the only ones out here. The Navy sure does have some nice beachfront real estate!!!
That's the Seal obstacle course...looks like a lot of fun!
Got lunch at a great dive bar/Navy Seal hangout called Dannys...
Having a look at the famous Hotel del Coronado. Reminded me a lot of Congress Hall in Cape May!
Finally took a dip at one of the beaches on North Island Naval Air Station...a bit nippy, but certainly refreshing!
So while we had a great time its hard not to think about the responsibility that Thomas will have once the sub is out of dry-dock and back underwater for the next three years. Pretty amazing stuff! I'm proud that one of my good buddies is out there lurking beneath the surface, keeping us all back home safe and sound. Not easy to say goodbye to these guys for the next 3 years, but I see a lot of FaceTime in our future. Best of luck out in Guam guys!
Lastly...check out this great set of poker chips that all of the fellas went in on and got for Thomas back in June at our 20th high school reunion. Each submarine that he's served on is represented on a different denomination. He'll be able to break these out when he's got a little free time on board to relax!
Another successful PMC in the books folks! Great weather all weekend for each of the various routes. I did the 1-day 50 miler again this year before returning to the 2-day 200 miler next year. Great to ride with some old friends and new riders as well!
A quick spin with the boys on Saturday around town to loosen up the legs!
Soon enough Sunday morning was upon us...
Thinking about Phil a good deal during the ride!
Quick stop at the halfway point...and to check in on training camp!
I'm up to about $,3400 raised and the Team is now at over $30k. Fundraising can happen until October...so give early and give often! Just follow this link!
Hard to believe that BabyJ isn't really much of a baby anymore at all. 4 years old! [she technically turns 4 tomorrow, but since Kel is traveling for a few days we're just going with yesterday as her "official" birthday day!]
We had a party for her yesterday to celebrate with family and friends...and have some really good breakfast!
She was excited to put her Jake costume on, but wasn't thrilled with all of the attention.
Thanks to everyone who was able to make it and help us celebrate!!!