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7th Annual Shadow of the Bear Rally

September 14 @ 8:00 AM September 17 @ 5:00 PM EDT

We are very excited for TCT’s 2023 Shadow Of The Bear Rally at Orchard Beach State Park.  The park and Tin Can Tourists have been friends for over a century.  Last year was wonderful, we had such a good time!  Many of our campsites have a view of Lake Michigan. As we sat at our campsites, enjoying each others company, we watched the eagles soar, riding on the thermals over the lake.  It was so cool!  We enjoyed taking our meals in the moved and refreshed Pavilion.  The size of the Pavilion will accommodate all of us – as many of us as are in attendance can enjoy our meals together.  Because the local area is so beautiful, our agenda allows for lots of “touristing” time.  The park’s rangers have recommended a block of sites for our gathering. They are highlighted in white on the site map at the end of this letter. Please note:  The sites highlighted offer the best view of the lake and mature trees providing ample shade.   

SITES CAN BE RESERVED ONLINE:  https://midnrreservations.com/home



Morning:  Koffee & Kibitzing – Host Site          

Morning – 4:00pm:  Arrive & Set Up/Then Sign In/Site TBD        

5:00pm:  Meet & Greet Dinner at a restaurant TBA

Evening:  Campfire & Conversations – Site# TBD


7:30am:  Koffee & Kibitzing – The Pavilion

8:00am:  Breakfast Pitch In – The Pavilion

Morning/Afternoon: Free Ranging the Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore, Manistee, and Leelanau Peninsula

6:00pm:  Dinner – Pot Luck – The Pavilion

Evening:  Campfire & Conversations – Site# TBD


7:30am:  Koffee & Kibitzing – The Pavilion

8:00am:  Breakfast Pitch In – The Pavilion 

Morning/Afternoon: Free Ranging the Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore, Manistee, and Leelanau Peninsula

6:00pm:  Dinner – Pot Luck – The Pavilion                               

Evening:  Campfire & Conversations – Site# TBD


8:00am:  Koffee & Kibitzing – Host site            

9:00am:  Farewells and Best Wishes for Safe

SUNDAY (continued)

For the “Hell No We Won’t Goers:”

5:00:   Dinner at a local restaurant TBA (rain or shine)

7:41pm:   Sunset Manistee beach (weather permitting)

Evening:  Campfire & Conversations – Site# TBA


Rally Fee: $45  Please mail a check ASAP to
Rebecca Shrode

19019 Waite Blvd.

South Bend, IN 46637

  • Checks are best and need to arrive in our mailbox by Saturday September 9th.
  • You can also send us your rally fee via PayPal (https://www.paypal.com/us/home).  Our PayPal addy is ContactUs@BrookRode.com. If your e-mail addy does not clearly indicate who you are, please put your name in the note area.
  • When you pay the rally fee, please let us know your Site#.  Thanks!

TCT Dues:  This is an official Tin Can Tourist rally.  Your dues need to be current.  Annual renewal time for TCT dues is in May.  If you still need to renew:  (https://tincantourists.com/product/annual-tct-membership-subscription/)

Participant Packets:  One participant packet will be available for each rig.  Included in the packet:  Site Map, Agenda, Name Tags, Personalized 2023 Shadow Of The Bear Window/Door Sign, and a 3D printed 2023 Shadow Of The Bear Memento/Souvenir. 

Number of Participants:  Come one…come all!  In the past, we have had to limit the size of the rally due to occupancy restrictions on the building where we took our meals.  This year, we have “The Pavilion,” so a limit on the number of participants is unnecessary.  The more the merrier!!!

“The Pavilion:”
is where we will be taking our meals.  It is an impressive stone structure.  It was recently moved from the top of the sand dune to a safer spot tucked at the north end of the campground.  We will use “The Pavilion” for Fun, Food, & Fellowship.  The building is an easy walk from our campsites.  You can also drive to it.  In the event of rain or gale force winds, “The Pavilion” will be our go to for fires and conversations.

Open House: NO Open House this year. 


“Koffee & Kibitzing:” Coffee, creamers, and sweeteners will be provided.  Please bring your own coffee mug and a chair.

Early Bird Club:” on Thursday, we’ll go out to dinner at a locally owned restaurant in Manistee. We enjoy Early Bird Club Dinners at other gatherings.  It is a nice way to cap off a travel/set up day.

“Hell No We Won’t Goers:” we’ll go out to an early dinner on Sunday at locally owned restaurant in Manistee:  Then weather permitting, head over to the beach and lighthouse to enjoy Mother Nature’s show.  https://www.michigan.org/property/manistee-north-pierhead-lighthouse  

What is a “Pitch In” Breakfast?”  They are popular at other gatherings – so you may be familiar with them.  You are invited to bring a completed dish to share, bacon, eggs, casseroles, hash browns, etc…  You can also bring uncooked eggs, bacon, bread, hash browns, oil, butter, jams, etc…  Please bring electric griddles, skillets, and toasters.  You can offer to cook the eggs and bacon for folks right on the spot, or they can cook their breakfast themselves.  In addition to bringing a dish/something to share, please bring your own table service.  More questions?  Please ask.

Pot Lucks:  Please bring your favorite pot luck dish to share.  Those fabulous dishes make each pot luck unique and delicious!  In addition to bringing a dish share, please bring your own table service.  More questions?  Please ask.


  • Registration:  put together participant packets, help with registration on Thursday
  • Pitch In Breakfasts and Pot Luck Dinners:  Help with set-up, arranging food, and clean up.
  • Fun:  Please bring Corn Hole, board & card games, puzzles, and your knitting/crochet/embroidery projects for time we spend together in “The Pavilion.”  Please bring your musical instruments to play ‘round the campfire or in the Pavilion. 

GOING OUT TO EAT:  on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday:  The restaurants will understandably asked for a head count.  Please watch for and then RESPOND TO an upcoming e-mail/Facebook post. 

THE AREA:  There is so much beauty to see and so many fun things to do, it is impossible to list them all here.  We urge you to do Google searches to plan your touristing time while at the rally.  A few good places to start:

Sleeping Bear Dunes Visitor’s Bureau

Leelanau Peninsula Wine Trail

If you did everything suggested on these links, you would be busy in the area for over a month…or more!  There are many more sites you can browse online.

The first 6 Shadow Of The Bear rallies were so much fun.  We relaxed, made new friends, grew existing friendships, enjoyed lively conversation, and generally had a really good time.  We are looking forward to the 7th Annual TCT Shadow Of The Bear Rally being the best yet!

Safe travels & happy camping!
Rebecca & Paul


View Organizer Website

2064 Lakeshore Rd
Manistee, MI 49660 United States
(231) 723-7422
View Venue Website

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