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Do you know if RFTW will get priority staging (as a group) as they did with Rolling Thunder?
There is no “Like Button” so here is my “Like”!
Memorial Day is May 25th in 2020. Everyone gets into D.C. the Friday before Memorial Day so that means RFTW leaves Ontario on Wednesday the 13th. Central Route goes into Angel Fire NM on the third day which is Friday the 15th. But you don’t get into D.C. till the next Friday which is May 22nd, the Friday before Memorial Day.
Someone correct me if I am wrong.
Good luck to you Shooter. Thanks for being a part of this organization as it has done so much for our veterans and it is only because of people like you that it exist.
Semper FiJuly 13, 2019 at 3:50 pm #12831
Thanks for the info. Need to make plans.July 7, 2019 at 6:11 pm #12803
The web page says July 5th is the last day, is it still possible to purchase a brick till the 31st? Can you buy a brick even if you cannot attend the ceremony on Sat Aug 31st?
Dangles, Sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing, both the story and the pictures. RFTW is a great group of people that love this country and all that have served. Welcome to the family.
Mountaintracker1, welcome. RFTW was created to support Rolling Thunder so RFTW has a special relationship with them. Because of that, RFTW gets a special spot when they stage to leave the Pentagon. Not front of the line but pretty close. The itinerary for the Central route for 2018 is not up but if you look at last years, it will show you what they (RFTW) do for those participating in Rolling Thunder. So last year’s itinerary shows they staged at 0545 with the location “TBD”. Normally it is at the host hotel but check if it is not posted on the itinerary. They then left the hotel staging area for the Pentagon at 0615. You get to the Pentagon and park at about 0700. If you participate in Rolling Thunder, you want to do it with RFTW. It starts at 1200 and you should leave before 1230. Others will leave the parking lot 2-4 hours later. Like I said, RFTW gets close to up front staging because they have been there since the second year of Rolling Thunder. They do not have hundreds of bikers participating in Rolling Thunder, they have hundreds of thousands participating.
So from 0700 till 1200, what do you do? There will be food and drinks sold there. Patches hat’s and other things to buy as well. And lots of other peoples bikes to look at. You can walk across the bridge to the Pentagon and see their 9/11 Memorial. If you have your wife with you, the restroom at the Pentagon is much nicer than the porta potties at the staging area.
Riding with many strangers will test YOUR skills, but RFTW does a great job at getting riders on the same page quick. Rolling Thunder….not so much. Some people will join the run at the host hotel just to ride with RFTW to the Pentagon for Rolling Thunder. My only close call was on that day, so be very careful (always) and don’t let your guard down. There is a lot of rubber banding and people race to catch-up. Once you go around the Mall, you can park or you can leave the area. The D.C. police (road guards) will direct you.
Once again, welcome.
Found that link from this website. Never been in country but did participate with the recovery of the S.S. Mayaguez and found a fellow Marine that is listed on the Wall. That operation was listed as the last Vietnam operation so he and the others we lost were placed on the Wall and like you said, has a lot of info. So last time I rode to D.C., I looked for, and found his name on the Wall.
If you have never been to the wall and plan to on this run, you can look to see which panel a loved one’s name is on long before you get there. You can look up their name there at the Wall but you will be in a long line on Memorial Day week-end.
Hello Chrisblock93, welcome.
I have not been on the Central route but this is what I know about RFTW. You can meet up with them for the ceremony at the memorial located at Heritage Park. No one is going to say you can’t be there and if you tell them you are joining the Run in the morning, you will get nothing but welcomes from everyone. They leave together for a dinner given by the Fraternal Order of Eagles from 1800-2000 which, unless you have a wrist band, you won’t be able to attend. I see that there is no registration listed for that evening so you won’t be able to finish checking in and get the wrist band till the next morning. You maybe registered but you have not “Joined” the Run until they have looked over your paper work to insure you have a valid license, bike registration and insurance. They have to see it before they give you your packet and welcome you to the Run.
They get to Concordia Mo., fuel and have lunch. You can leave after fueling or you can leave after lunch. The fuel stop is donated and so is the lunch. You should (if you are not pressed for time) go to the lunch as that is where you will see many of the people that make RFTW work so well. All these people doing what they can to help RFTW and what it does for our veterans and their family.
You can leave at any time while on the Run, you can just tap out, let them pass and go in another direction. Just follow the procedure for tapping out. At lunch, you can just not leave with the group. Just make sure the people parked behind you can get around your bike. Or you can ask the Platoon Leader for advice on how best to exit just before they leave or just after. And you should let him (or her) know you will be leaving after lunch when you meet him/her after checking in that morning. You don’ have to but you can then ask as to how you can leave (again) without hindering the riders parked behind you and will need to ride around your bike as they leave. No one keeps track of the riders in the platoon. You are there and you leave with them. If you don’t show up, (your stuck in the bathroom) they leave without you. You can leave whenever for your own reasons but you just can’t join as they say “On the fly”. You have to attend the morning riders meeting to participate on that days ride. You can tap out and rejoin at the next stop, but you should have started the day by attending the morning meeting.
Thanks for joining and welcome.
Thanks Killswitch, a good reminder.
We all have our own reasons to ride the first time and then the reasons to ride again and again. A big deal for me was seeing all those American’s along the route waving their hand in appreciation and support in what RFTW is doing for the cause. What really touched and gave me a renewed sense of pride in being an American, was seeing all those people out there in the dry heat or cold rain. They reminded me of the reason I wore the uniform, and that experience was something I didn’t see much of living in Ca. Just me, but I felt the support and patriotism more and more as we went east.
But many in this great nation do get it, and they won’t forget. RFTW does a lot to ensure they are reminded of the many that can’t ride. So we ride for those that can’t and ensure “You are not forgotten”.
Thanks for the info MWKYZER. Appreciated it.
I like that, great idea Bud. And “VAFISH” I went to You Tube and found a few there too.
But Bud, (or anyone) can you sign “Thank you” with your left hand just the same? Or is it with your right but they will understand (throttle) if you do it with your left hand. I’m sure I can pull the clutch long enough to get a “thank you” out with my right but was just wondering.
Paul, RFTW has nothing to do with the actual check-in at the hotels. So it is just as you would think, you get there and if there is a line, you get in line. The hotels give a discount so they get the rooms filled but it seems that they are doing what they can to support RFTW and what the RUN does for our veterans. There have been complaints in the past on riders not putting forth their best and the hotel can say “NO” next year. So that’s why leadership will remind everyone not to park at the entry way and to remember that we do represent RFTW while on the run.
But most hotels will have extra personnel on hand to get everyone situated as quickly as possible but it can be a hurry up and wait scenario like most of us have been through before.
Welcome home Dan and all FNG’s. And also welcome to the Run. Just remember that the Run gets you to the Wall but then you are on your own back to your front door. I see Dan that you ride with PGR in southern Nev. Don’t know if you plan on going straight home or riding a different route on the way home, but you might want to use a weather radar ap on your smart phone. I was the last one on my block to get a smart phone and now I use it a great deal to check where the rain is at on my route. It worked great as I was able to see where the rain was rather than where I thought it would be.
One year I wanted to take the 40 through OK but went south and took I10 though TX instead because of possible tornado’s. I shared this on a forum and other RFTW rider’s stated that they had tornado’s in their rear view mirror’s as they exited the 40 going home. So watch the weather going home and get updates on your smart phone.