Friday, June 26, 2009, 9:00 am
What is a Feeder Event?
MINIsOnTop “Feeder Events” are gatherings of MINI “pods” that converge on the MINIsOnTop headquarters hotel on Friday, the day before MOT. Several feeder events (the Yankee Candle Caravan and the Boston Caravan) join each other to form one large Caravan at the “Area 51” rest stop located about 15 miles north of Concord NH on I-93.
For those folks traveling to MINIs On Top from the Mid-West, the Mid-Atlantic states, New York and Western New England, we invite you to join the YC/Boston/A51 Caravans at the Yankee Candle Factory Flagship Store in South Deerfield, Massachusetts on Friday, June 26th. The Yankee Candle Factory is located just off Exit 24 of Interstate 91 North in Western Massachusetts, and is about 4 hours from New York City, 2 hours from Albany (NY), 1 hour from Hartford (CT) and about 30 minutes from the intersection of the Massachusetts Turnpike (Exit 4) and Interstate 91 North.
Signing Up for the YC Event
A sign-up thread on MINI2 has been created for people to post their interest in being part of the YC/A51 Caravan. Head on over to the MINIsOnTop Feeder Events, June 26, 2009 thread on MINI2.com and register! Don’t forget to specify the meeting point where you will join the Caravan.
Getting to Yankee Candle
We will be gathering at the Yankee Candle Factory Flagship Store in South Deerfield, Massachusetts on Friday, June 26th at 9:00 am. Yankee Candle is located on Rt. 5 just off Exit 24 of I-91 in Western Massachusetts.
Arrival at the Event
The gathering will begin about 9:00 am Friday morning with the arrival of attendees at the MINI Reception Area in Yankee Candle’s North parking lot. We have made reservations for folks to visit the Yankee Candle Store between 9:30 am and 10:30 am. The Yankee Candle folks are very eager to accommodate us since most of their staff are big time car buffs (Yankee Candle used to have a very impressive Car Museum). One of the retired Group Tour employees has even participated in the VSCCA’s “Climb to the Clouds” event up the Mt. Washington Auto Road!
During the Event
There will be plenty of sight-seeing, socializing and, of course, incredible shopping. If you have never visited Yankee Candle’s amazing “flagship” factory, now is the time! You will find a wide array of gifts from quilts to antique signs, toys, automobilia, Christmas ornaments and decorations, kitchen accessories and slot car racing sets…and, of course, candles. Boy do they have candles!
They also have a Candle Museum where authentically dressed “chandlers” present a fascinating demonstration of Colonial candle-making. For a $1.00 charge, you can even hand-dip your own multi-colored candle to really impress your friends.
Yankee Candle also offers a choice of three restaurants for your dining pleasure: upscale fare in the ritzy Chandler’s Restaurant, deli sandwiches and pizza at the Candlewick Café, or coffee, tea, soda and quick treats at the Bear Claw.
Drivers Meeting, Departure Time, and Caravan Route
At 10:30 SHARP, a Driver’s Meeting will be held in our area of the parking lot. All participants should attend this meeting. We will discuss the YC Caravan driving route, guidelines, communication issues, and potentially raffle-off some neat Yankee Candle products!
For those of you who wish to attend the MINIs on Top event in New Hampshire, we will depart Yankee Candle at 11:00 and will travel the YC Caravan Route through the scenic hills of New Hampshire toward Area 51 and the White Mountains. Our only stop will be (rest) at Area 51, 15 miles north of Concord, NH. Area 51 has restrooms, vending machines, and will be the location where we merge with the Boston MINI Caravan “pod”.
Please go to THIS post to access online route maps and directions!
The expected arrival time in the Attitash area will be approximately 4:30 pm.
Please note that the route between Yankee Candle and Area 51 will take a little over 2 hours. Since there is no gas station at Area 51, we strongly suggest that during the Yankee Candle event you remember to fill your MINI’s tank…and empty your own. The closest gas station is the Exxon-Mobil station and convenience store located 0.25 miles south of Yankee Candle on Rt. 5. Please do not wait until 10:30 to perform these services; make sure that by 11:00 am, you, your passengers, and your MINI are prepared for departure.
YC/A51 Caravan Communications
As with other New England MINI events, FRS/GMRS walkie-talkies are used for communication with event participants while en route. We use channel 7 and no sub-channel. At the event, you will also be provided with a cell phone number to call for emergency communications.