It has been difficult to arrange rides because of the pandemic, I'm sure other clubs are facing similar issues. Like most JMA clubs, we love to ride and we ride to eat, but when you get to a restaurant and it is closed or they are open for takeout only, but there's no place to sit down, even the benches and tables in a nearby park are typically closed, it becomes difficult. Another difficulty is closed restrooms. Thus, we have not had too many rides so far this season, just a few between late April and early June. Since then it has been HOT, like many days in a row in the upper 90's, with, as you all know, road temperatures even higher.
However, our last ride was Extraordinarily different. I recall when I was a bit younger and used to ride 40 or 50 miles on my weekend AM bicycle ride, passing through a town called Grover's Mill. I asked the people who I was riding with why that name sounded somewhat familiar and they reminded me of a very special event that happened there on October 30th, 1938. I'll give you a hint: After this event, CBS radio had to enter a consent decree that they will never again use the line "we interrupt this program to bring you ...". Anyone remember what they did?
The Martian's had landed, in New Jersey and were using their Death Ray.
I decided to lead a motorcycle ride there to spend some time looking at the monument and other artifacts in the park. We had 8 bikes and a great ride starting in Central New Jersey and making a loop through the surrounding rural countryside, and after seeing the Martian landing site, looping around Princeton, NJ, then southwest to the Delaware River and then about 60 or so miles north along the river up to a nice park where we had a picnic lunch. OK, actually, I didn't quite just tell the truth, we actually passed the park entrance because of my faulty GPS, and Mitch Kane stepped up to lead the rest of the ride. [After updating the 2020 map into my BMW Nav IV the month before, my pre programmed routes have been stopping intermittently, after working fine for the first 10 miles or so, and I have to keep trying to restart the route while riding... ergo, we actually missed the entrance, but enjoyed the ride around central NJ and then up along the Delaware River for a picnic lunch at a Pennsylvania state park that had open picnic tables and restrooms.
About a week or two later, actually on June 6th, we had a shorter ride specifically to the Martian Landing site for a picnic lunch. I am the fellow taking the selfie on the left, white JMA tee shirt, next to me is Lenny Weinberg (who some may remember meeting at the Oswego R2R, who actually served on board the Henry Gibbons for a while; the ship that brought the 982 refugees to the Oswego, NY refugee camp in June 1944). Lenny is pointing to the image of a young Orsen Wells who was the mastermind behind this radio broadcast that created such a stir. At the other end of the monument is Ed Gerber and next to him Alan Kane, past president of the Hillels Angels. Rather than write in this text of what happened that night, it is best if you just read the description on the signs, photos attached.