I had a new experience on the May 16, 2023 Big Laurel Spring Driving Tour.  I wasn’t a Lead, I wasn’t a Sweep, I just drove in the middle of the pack.

No wonder Appalachian Region Drive & Dines are the most popular events within the club.  I wasn’t driving watching mirrors or talking on the two-way radio. It was just a pleasure drive enjoying my 1986 911 Carrera 3.2.

On a Drive & Dine you get to drive in a line of Porsches on fantastic roads. The view is amazing as you are seeing a line of Porsches winding down the beautiful twisting mountain roads of Western North Carolina.

   

    Bob and Jean Larsen working with Tour Chair Don Lowcavage designed a tour in the north of the region that started in Marshall, North Carolina and ended at the Twisted Laurel restaurant in Weaverville.

After leaving the start point in the Ingles parking lot, the two groups of 12 Porsches each and their drivers warmed up their driving skills while enjoying the sweepers of US-25.  

This is a heavily traffic road so the line had interlopers interspersed in the lines. The expert guidance and leadership of Bob and Jean leading group one with sweep John Long, and Don Lowcavage leading group two with sweep Liz and Doug Scheer, kept the lines on track and in position for the first turn onto Gunter Town Road.

I said that US-25 was a warm-up. Drivers quickly needed their skills to navigate the changing elevation and twists and turns of Gunter Town Road.  According to Amy Feightner, the passengers also needed their skills to hold on as the Porsches swung left to right and back.

The route quickly moved to a leisurely, enjoyable pace as the line traversed 20-miles down Big Laurel Creek Road that follows the scenic Big Laurel Creek.  The mid-tour rest stop at BP Station gave everyone 20-minutes to connect and recount the thrills of the roller coaster-like ride down Gunter Town Road that led to the beauty and sweepers of Big Laurel.

After the break the drive was a tour of new roads for most drivers as we drove Beech Glen off 19 into Weaverville where we had a parade of  Porsches traversing Main Street to the Twisted Laurel.

It is always a problem to serve 33 people all descending on the restaurant at once, but Tour Chair Don Lowcavage had prepared the restaurant well so the tables were set and the kitchen kicked out the food in remarkably short time considering how our crowd descended upon them.

The food and conversation were great and by one everyone was heading for home.

NEXT DRIVE

The next drive is the June 3rd Mountain Brook Vineyards tour in the south.  It is sold out, but put yourself on the wait list as we work hard to accommodate all members.

HELP WANTED

Tour Chair Don Lowcavage loves designing routes and tours for the Region but could use some help with coordinating restaurants.  If any of you would like to support the club and get involved, we would love your help.

The Social Tour Chair role allows you to help with your phone, research and conversation skills in finding the great little place to eat at the end of the drive. Don will indicate a destination, then you work to find the restaurant to cap off the drive.

Contact me if you are willing to assist.

Jim Moore – Appalachian Region President