Home arrow VMCA Newsletters arrow Volume 2, Number 3 - July 1, 2005 arrow Southern Hospitality at Bench Mark Works
Southern Hospitality at Bench Mark Works PDF Print E-mail
Written by BMWVMCA NEWS   
Thursday, 31 July 2008

by Chris Betjemann

On the weekend of April 22-24, 2005 Vech and Elaine at Bench Mark Works in Sturgis, MS hosted the first annual VMCA meet to be held in the sunny South.  People came from near and far by motorcycle, sidecar, plane and automobile.  For those of us from the not so sunny North, the thought of an event months earlier than those at home was mighty welcome.

Approximately 150 VMCA members and other vintage BMW motorcycle enthusiasts attended the event and it was a grand one.  Mark Huggett of Mark Huggett GmbH traveled with his partner Esthi Reynolds from Switzerland to attend. The weather cooperated magnificently.  The weather wasn’t too hot, it wasn’t too cold, it was just right.  And the mood of all was just as all right as well.

Many attendees arrived on the Wednesday or Thursday immediately before the event to hang out and lend a hand.  Vech and Elaine opened their parts department each day and offered a 10% discount on all purchases throughout the event.  Additionally, Vech and Elaine opened their workshop to everyone and let us all see the inner workings of Bench Mark Works.

The event proper began promptly on Friday morning with breakfast and the beginning of some serious parts swapping.  Vech and Mark presented a tech session on Friday that was followed by a formal meeting of VMCA and election of club officers for the following year. Dinner on Friday was a southern barbeque buffet followed by a bonfire, music and much visiting. 

Saturday dawned beautifully and yet more folks arrived with parts to sell and trade and the serious swapping continued.  Vech and Mark presented the second of two tech sessions and it, like the first, was well attended and informative.  Vech and Mark’s description of recommended alterations to R24 through R25/3 engine blocks and cylinder bases to improve piston skirt oiling so as to reduce the incidence of piston seizure was particularly appreciated by those of us restoring those machines.

Saturday evening it was off to Pap’s in Ackerman, MS for an amazing southern buffet dinner.  We were led there by a police escort complete with flashing lights.  There followed behind a long line of vintage machines that was a sight to behold.  We were honored by Vech and Elaine with the loan of their R51/3 with Steib LS200 for that 20 mile ride. 

After dinner it was back to Bench Mark Works for another bonfire, the “Bad Apple” band and awards.

Sunday morning was the time for a goodbye breakfast, farewells and hugs all around.  It was a wonderful weekend, a weekend we will all remember for a long time as a good one, a weekend of renewing old friendships and making new ones, a weekend of getting some much needed parts. 

We are all very grateful to Vech and Elaine and their staff for making so much of this possible and for making us all feel so much at home.  And, of course, thanks to the many volunteers, especially the “VMCA Ladies” who, when they were not helping with food preparation, were working on the design of the upcoming VMCA T-shirts.

Also see related stories: on Page 3, and on Page 11

Bench Mark Works

Elaine and Vech are substantial financial sponsors of the BMW VMCA. They have helped make this club possible.

Though it is not current VMCA policy to run ad space, we as a group can collectively repay their generosity:



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3400 Earles Fork Road

Sturgis, MS 39769 USA

662-465-6444 or 1-800-323-7102

Monday-Friday 8-5 central time


Last Updated ( Thursday, 31 July 2008 )
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