2010 Michigan Suburban trip

June 14

Today we will be visiting the Kalamazoo Air Zoo...an airplane museum. Debby is pretty worn out and sore from her miles of roller scootering yesterday so she's gonna stay home and rest. It'll be a guy trip.

As mentioned earlier, John has been thinking about a GL1500 trike. Champion Trikes has a dealer in the area and we'll visit there on the way to the Air Zoo.

Our typical Michigan morning is wake up around 8am'ish, piddle around, sit on the deck, eat some breakfast, take showers, then finally start out on our daily adventures. In the past we've been on the move earlier in the morning. Here was just go slower and relax. Mike is watching some TV.

We left the house at 10:09 and headed for the small town of Alto and the Champion trike dealer. We programmed the address into the GPS and let it be the boss. It routed us north passed Holland and Grand Rapids. East of Grand Rapids we turned south on MI-50. I got a pleasant surprise...there was a train doing some local switching.

When the GPS said we were there all we saw was a house with a pole barn. We continued down the road to a church parking lot where we rechecked the address. Yes...it was the correct address. Apparently the 'dealer' is just an individual who works out of his garage. It didn't appear like he had any trikes or stuff to look at so we told the GPS to take us to the Air Zoo.

Martin, MI. 12:05 - The GPS took us down US131 from Grand Rapids. We stopped in Martin for a pitstop. I took over driving duties.

Kalamazoo, MI. 12:40 - We arrived at the Air Zoo. John had been here before, but they have expanded since then and the main facility is at a different location.

When you walk into the atrium the first thing you see is this beautiful P-40. It was flown for many years by Air Zoo cofounder and WWII WASP Sue Parish. Sadly, we found out she had passed away just a month earlier.

We bought our bracelets for both museums, which also allowed us unlimited use of the flight simulators. We spent over three hours checking out the planes on display, the flight simulators, and the special display rooms. We also had hamburgers for lunch which turned out to be excellent!

Air Zoo pictures

Next we moved to their adjacent facility and browsed there until their 5pm closing time. This facility also has some space and rocket related displays. After leaving the building we stood by the truck under cool and cloudy skies and plotted our next course of action. There was a Honda dealer in Kalamazoo...maybe they had some trikes or something trike related? We plotted a course with me at the wheel.

The GPS led us directly to M&M Motor Mall. We looked around but there wasn't a lot in their shop that interested us. They had a newer Venture that had been laid down and they wanted quite a bit for it. John talked to the salesman and told him the story. He said he had a customer Goldwing for sale in the back. We walked to a rear building. It was a 2003 GL1800, Illusion blue, Cobra pipes, backrest, fog lights, spoiler, Kuryakyn luggage...lots of the 'good' accessories. They were asking $12K but he thought it was already spoken for. He took John's number in case it didn't sell. It was a really nice bike but more than John wanted to spend for something to trike.

From there we looped back around Kalamazoo to the intersection of US131 and MI-43. We stopped at a convenience store for pop. Mike took over driving from there. We took scenic MI-43 west. Along the way we were on the lookout for strawberries for Debby. We saw some advertisements, but never found the real thing.

Near South Haven we took the Blue Star Highway north. Along the way we found a produce stand. Strawberries! Mike also bought some tomatoes. At 19:04 we arrived at the house with fresh produce and a good day under our belts.

Debby is a great cook. When we got home she started cooking some wonderful meatloaf and mashed potatos. It was wonderful. We spent the rest of the night lounging, snacking on strawberries, and sitting on the deck.

154 miles.

Click here for our next day's adventure.

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