Florida State Winnie Gators

March 2009 Rally

By Kathryn Griffin 

“Salute to the Military” is now history! The 2009 Florida State Winnie Gators Rally in March was a week full of activities, with a record 324 coaches in attendance! Thursday kicked off the rally with exciting opening ceremonies. All state officers were dressed in camouflage outfits! The stage area was so meaningful with military decorations, including a tribute to POWs--MIAs and an Army recruit asleep in a pup tent! The Lyman High School Color Guard and Drill Team were our guests and showed off their training by presenting colors and performing a military drill. President Linda Tuzzolo welcomed everyone and introduced officers, chapter presidents and special guests, including Doug Formanek, WIT General Manager, his wife Pat, and Dick & Mikki Dodge, WIT Eastern Area Reps. 

Displays by two dealers, fifty-five vendors and various seminars kept us busy, shopping and learning. Activities included the Friendship Walk; row party event “Come and Meet the Chapters”; bingo;  WIT Store;  Pet Parade; Arts and Crafts competition; Ice Cream Social; games; Book Fair; and Wine and Cheese Party. Many happy attendees went home with some great door prizes and we were proud to be able to give to the Prater-Willi Syndrome Association the proceeds from our charity raffle. 

Our outstanding entertainment included the “Las Vegas Revue” with Keith Coleman and Ruby Tuesday and “Entertainment Revue”, a group of 27 young ladies ages 5 through teenage, doing music, dancing, and costume changes, all with such poise and talent! 

Club business items included installation of new officers by Doug Formanek and announcement that the 2010 Rally will be March 11 – 14 and its theme will be “Welcome to Bago Bago Island. 

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Florida State Winnie Gators 2009 Rally! We couldn’t have done it without you!

Nancy Miller  

Check out the pictures taken by Lee Macdonald at the rally.