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Old 06-20-2004, 11:50 AM   #1
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Rivet 'Silver city' is setting up shop with a little neighborly help

Published June 17, 2004 - Lansing State Journal

It takes nearly three years, 150 volunteer committees, three semitrailer trucks and an aerial photographer to produce a successful Wally Byam Caravan Club International rally.
The "silver city'' of about 1,700 aluminum-clad Airstream travel trailers and Airstream motor homes near Capital City Airport has everything a town needs. It started taking shape on June 7.

Rigs are arriving at scheduled intervals, mainly from June 25 to June 27.

The Lansing Board of Water and Light provides hookup to a hydrant, from which volunteers link three miles of surface plastic water piping from trailer to trailer, international club president Daryl Ewles said.

Officials didn't immediately know how much the club will pay BWL for the service.

The BWL also is selling $45,000 worth of electrical service strung from special poles, said Julie Pingston of the Greater Lansing Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The 30-amp service is just enough to keep batteries charged and run a TV - no microwaves, air conditioning or computers, Ewles said.

More electrical power is available to those parking near the Marshall Street Armory. Rally attendees who have disabilities are parking next to the Lansing Center.

Recent heavy rains threw a wrench in the club's meticulous plans, preventing rigs from parking this week on airport grounds.

They're scattered temporarily at several Grand River Avenue businesses and along an airport service road.

"But the people in this community have been super,'' Ewles said.

The club even has its own post office on site - in a specially fitted Airstream, of course. And the city is hauling the club's garbage by contract.

The semis carry office equipment, gear for carpentry and sign printing, and a large tent in which religious services are held.

Contact Chris Golembiewski at 377-1044 or cgolembi@lsj.com.

Published June 17, 2004

By Chris Golembiewski
Lansing State Journal
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