Libbys on the Loose:2 Humans. 2 Great Danes. 1 RV.: Runaway Country 2015 Wickham Park, Melbourne, FL

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Runaway Country 2015 Wickham Park, Melbourne, FL

We've moved again!  Since our fifth wheel hitch wasn't installed in time to move from our campsite in Manatee Hammock, we again had to have a transporter deliver our rig.  But, true to their word, RV Direct America in Titusville, FL delivered the truck directly to our prime camping spot right in the center of the action at Runaway Country!

RV'ers pulling in and getting set up Thursday afternoon
Perfect weekend weather for tent camping
If you don't know what Runaway Country is (neither of us were country music fans, but this is one heck of party!), it's a three day music festival that takes place from March 20-22 in Wickham Park, Melbourne, FL.  Headlining this year were Florida Georgia Line and Blake Shelton.  There were other acts, but none that we really knew that well, but enjoyed listening to them from our (again - awesome) campsite.  Being able to literally live in the festival is something that, if you can, do it!  That is, unless you're the type that would rather be secluded from, rathere than surrounded by, about 35,000 people.  

We came last year, but only for a one-night show (The Band Perry, which we highly recommending seeing) Since we have the RV this time, we knew it would be a whole different kind of experience - especially because the company we work for is a sponsor of the event!   With Blake Shelton and Florida Georgia Line, this year was bound to be exponentially better!
Our Rig finally ready to roll!

This year, as expected, was already proving to be a blast, just based on the Welcome RV Campers party! Sponsored by FishLips Waterfront Bar & Restaurant, the party went on until the early hours of the morning, despite the bar breaking down early and the DJ exiting the stage a few minutes before midnight.  The music (and mayhem) went on until the early hours of the morning, so I heard :)

The guys at Runaway Country really take care of their campers!  Re-entry access was very easy to get back in to the main concert bowl and the vendor area.  We highly recommend that if you plan on imbibing, get your drink tokens early (the line was over 100 people long when we first got there) Another great thing about camping at the venue, no worries about driving or taxis!  The walk from the main concert bowl to our site was only about 8-10 minutes, so everything was very well laid out.

The only downside for the campsite location we had was that 110v power and water were the only hookups available, but the weather was mild so we had the windows open at night and ran the genny during the day when it started to get warmer.

Since Jeanine and I work for one of the companies that sponsored the event, it wasn't all fun & games for the weekend.   Thursday night, we had the privilege of getting to meet a few of organizers of the event to discuss future plans and expanding the event - very exciting news!  Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings, we visited other campsites (in our company Jeep fully wrapped in company colors/logos) and distributed fliers and business cards to other event-goers. Much to our satisfaction, we met many people who already knew about the company and had used Carl's Van Rentals in the past! 

The weekend was also about learning about our RV since we just got it recently.  The biggest thing that we learned was that we don't care for the LPG-powered generator.  Even though it is relatively quiet and moderately efficient, we plan to sell it replace it with a diesel-powered unit.  Diesel generators are usually quieter and more efficient,  plus diesel isn't flammable unless compressed, which is always a plus for safety.  We found that we burned about .6 gallons per hour with one AC unit and running our normal 110v devices (about 1/2 load).   With plans to boondock (drycamp) in the future, we will need something that will last at least a few days, at a minimum.  In addition, trying to refill 30lb propane tanks is not always the easiest task to accomplish!

Since we plan on replacing the head in the RV with a composting toilet (thank you GoneWithTheWynns for the great advice, reviews, and operation guidelines), this will allow us to free up our black water tank.  The plan is to replace the black water tank with a 50 gallon diesel fuel tank for the new generator setup.  By my calculations, the propane was burning through a 30lb tank (about 6-7 gallons of lpg) equating to about 10 hours per tank or .6 gph.  The diesel genset that we are looking into, a 6k Onan-Cummins diesel, burns approximately .4 gallons per hour at 1/2 load.   We should have no problem going days at a time, even running nonstop if needed.  Theoretically,  we should be able to run 5 days straight on 50 gallons.  Even though the burn rate is not significantly different, the change will help us to increase our LPG capacity, rid of a black water tank, and gain a more efficient generator - all at minimal cost considering we can sell our propane genset. The cost per gallon of propane is higher than the cost of diesel, too, making for an easy choice.

Everybody loves Jeanine!

The one other thing that we found is that cell service and WIFI service are very spotty when 35,000+people are trying to use it at the same time!  While there is no fix for this,  Technomadia have
put together a great "roadmap" on mobile internet setup here.  We were able to use our respective hotspots (AT&T and Verizon) to get adequate signal and speed to accomplish everything we needed.  Even though the lack of speed was annoying, we can't expect it to be perfect everywhere we go.  Thanks to the guys at Technomadia, we've been able to set ourselves up for success with our mobile internet access. 

Next year, it will be a tough call.  We have talked about going to Sebring for the 24 hours of Sebring Race, but it takes place at the same time as Runaway Country.  Close friends of ours have been going every year.  They tell us that it is also not an event that you want to miss.  But, we have a year to figure it out!  If you plan to be in Florida during the same time, send us a message - we'd love to see you!

Love the perks :)

The first of TWO of Joe Diffie's guitar picks!
Yes, we are "that" group
The second Joe Diffie pick!

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