2022 Viper Smokeout

The date for the Smokeout is chosen months in advance, and with Michigan weather, it’s always a crapshoot.  For our 4th Annual Viper Smokeout, you couldn’t ask for a more perfect day.  The sun was shining, barely a cloud in the sky, low humidity, with temps in the high-70’s.  I truly believe that this is one of our most anticipated and consistently attended event.

Our hosts, Paul, Alison and their son Andy, open up their beautiful home and grounds, in Cohoctah, to the club, for a day of great food, Vipers and good friends.  Once the registration has ended, they begin that week with multiple shopping trips to purchase all the various meats, fishes and provisions.  Then they begin preparing their home and grounds for the 60+ people that signed up.  They begin to prepare the side dishes a little in advance, with Paul preparing the smokehouse.  The morning of the event, Paul started the smoking process at 6am!

While the McClorey’s were making the final push, our Cruise Maestro, Bob Swartz, assembled all the attendees at Colasanti’s Market, for a unique shopping experience.  The group then caravanned the beautiful country roads, for almost an hour prior to coming to the McClorey’s.

As they arrived, the Vipers were parked in a sweeping panorama with the help of Paul LaPlant and Brandy Adams, for a group photo, with the club banner in the background.  We had a fantastic turnout of approximately 55 people and 32 Vipers!

There was a huge selection of smoked entrees to choose from: salmon, brisket, ribs, chicken, brats, along with wide variety of cold salads, baked beans, cheesy potatoes, and cornbread.  If you left hungry, it was your own fault.  At the end of the meal, there was multiple desserts and an ice cream cart!

As you can see from the pictures, there was more than enough to eat, and everyone went away satisfied.

We cannot thank our hosts enough, Paul, Alison, and Andy for all the care and work they put into this event!  There was also a group of unsung heroes working behind the scenes, helping in the kitchen.  They were Frank & Kim Berle; Ann Rappaport; and even Alison’s mom came over to help out!  We also want to thank Bob Swartz for planning the meet and cruise.  Bob always comes thru for us and will make multiple runs in advance to make sure the route and roads are acceptable for Vipers!

Lastly, our thanks to Ann Rappaport for taking these great photos and many more for one of our future Newsletters.

(Note: To view all photos for this event, move your mouse or cursor toward the picture, then click on the directional arrows that will appear.) You may also click on a photo where you’ll be sent to Flickr and can download your favorite.
2022 Viper Smokeout

2022 Pickerel Parade

The event coordinator, Susan Andring, wrote the following about her event:

“Some MCVO members participated in another fun parade yesterday. This one was the Algonac Pickerel Festival parade. The sun was shining, and the flags were flying in celebration of 4th of July 🇺🇸. Afterwards we had lunch at Johnnie Lega’s Tavern on Anchor Bay and a nice walk to the end of the pier. Another great day with our Viper family!”

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2022 Pickerel Parade

2022 Fish Fly Parade

The Coordinator, Susan Andring wrote the following about her event:

“What a great day it turned out to be for our members that signed up for the New Baltimore Fish Fly Festival Parade. Who doesn’t love a parade? Most importantly…..No rain! Giant shout out to Paul LaPlant and Brandy Adams for “volunteering” to be today’s grill master. Perfectly cooked burgers and dogs followed by Key Lime pie and ice cream bars! Thank you for all that attended!

Exciting News! The Fish Fly Parade has announced the winners of each category and MCVO won for the 2nd year in a row under “Classic”. This year, there were 3 entries vs. 2 for last year. Though I didn’t share last year that there were only 2 entries in Classic, but still, for our 1st and 2nd time ever being in the parade, we are a HIT! Each car got a shiny blue ribbon just for being entered and we will get a fancy certificate in the mail soon. Thank you again to all who participated.”

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2022 Fish Fly Parade

2022 June Cruise Night – Joe Kools’s

As mentioned in a previous Gallery entry, June has been a weird weather month for Michigan.  There has been a lot of rain and cooler temps, until the day of the June Cruise.  There had been heat advisory warnings and the weatherman didn’t disappoint.  The temps were 99 degrees in the daytime and by the evening were still in the low 90’s.  Traditionally the group will stand out by the cars and eventually make their way inside.  Not this time, where most could only stand out on the hot asphalt for a few minutes.  It’s probably a good thing they didn’t have our reservation outside.

The evening started off slow with about a handful of members and Vipers, but over time built up to a decent gathering.  We had a nice turnout with 26 in attendance and 14 Vipers.

A nice starter, Spinach + Artichoke Dip, compliments of the club, was served to every table.  Then everyone selected one of their favorites off the menu and had a nice meal with good friends and good conversation.

Our thanks to our Cruise Director, Mike Cipponeri, for finding another fun place to gather.

Lastly, our thanks to Ann Rappaport for taking these great photos and many more for one of our future Newsletters.

(Note: To view all photos for this event, move your mouse or cursor toward the picture, then click on the directional arrows that will appear.) You may also click on a photo where you’ll be sent to Flickr and can download your favorite.
2022 June Cruise - Joe Kool's

2022 Snakes Invade Shelby Township

This was our second year of Snakes Invade where we were hosted by Godfather Bistro and Cigar Bar.  What made this a little different was that this year we reached out to the Great Lakes Cobra Club, so that we could have many snakes invading.

This summer in Michigan has had its fair share or rain, and watching the weather forecast, in advance had many of us pretty nervous.  The percentages for rain, were all over the map, including the day of the event.  As it turned out, it was a perfect sunny day, with temps in the low 80’s, and the snakes came out to play.

We had approximately 37 in attendance, with 18 Vipers and 4 Cobras.  It was a spectacular sight, with area residents, coming in to view our gathering.

Our thanks to all those that took a chance and braved what could have been a rainy day.  Also, our many thanks to Brandon and his staff for making us feel welcome.  Brandon is already talking about us coming back next year.  We’re also looking forward to it and hope our Cobra friends will join us.

Lastly, our thanks to Ann Rappaport for taking these great photos and many more for one of our future Newsletters.

(Note: To view all photos for this event, move your mouse or cursor toward the picture, then click on the directional arrows that will appear.) You may also click on a photo where you’ll be sent to Flickr and can download your favorite.
2022 Snakes Invade Shelby Township

2022 Spring Brunch

The month of May for Michigan weather has been a chaotic ride.  The morning of the Brunch was no exception.  It was cold and dependent to where you lived, you may have had clear skies, sprinkles or rain.

Still with all that, we have a great turnout of 87 attendees and 30 Vipers.  Members came from all parts of the state, to be a part of one of our largest gatherings.  Not only is this our unofficial start of the season, but a festive gathering of fun, food and friends, many we’ve not seen in quite a while.  In addition, this is also considered a general membership meeting, with a report from Directors; where we conducted club business and voted on revisions to the By-Laws.

Unfortunately, with all the festivities we were saddened to hear that Diane Cipponeri had contacted Covid.  For the safety and well-being of our members, she did not attend the event that she (and Mike) spent countless hours creating.

All was not lost – Diane meticulously plans every facet of any event and all our Board had to do, was follow her instructions.  Everything was purchased and readied in advance, so it was only a matter of setting her plan in motion, the day of.

This was the first time we had a function at the Italian American Center in Livonia and everyone was impressed by the grandeur of the facility.  Our thanks to Rich Maccani, who is a member of the facility, for helping to get us such great service.  Some of us got a brief tour of the facility and spotted a beautiful Bocce Ball court.  This will definitely be considered for a future club Bocce Ball event.

We were provided a mouth-watering selection of breakfast and lunch items, and for dessert, we were served the traditional Italian ice cream, spumoni.
There was a jeweler onsite selling beautiful Viper jewelry, who also donated 4 pieces of jewelry to be raffled off to the ladies; numerous gifts for the free raffle; a 50/50 cash drawing (congrats to the Milana’s); and a silent auction (with most items being donated by our members.

At the end of this wonderful event, members could be seen walking out, arms full, with their winnings or purchases.  The group then assembled for the traditional group photo around their Vipers.

Our thanks to Mike and Diane Cipponeri and all those who worked behind the scenes to make this a first-class event.

2022 May Cruise Night – Griffin Claw Brewing

May has been a strange month weather-wise for Michigan.  It’s been unseasonably cold and only in the last couple days did we turn a corner.  To further complicate things we went from cold to 80-degree weather overnight, almost skipping spring.  Unfortunately, our luck didn’t hold for the Cruise Night, we went back to cold (50’s) and rain.

Our Cruise Night Director, Mike Cipponeri, found a new venue in Rochester Hills, called Griffin Claw Brewing.  His intention was to have us dine alfresco in our private area off the main dining room, but instead they had the “walls” up and the heaters on full blast.  We still had a nice evening catching up with friends, drinking good beer and eating from their diverse menu.  MCVO supplied a nice variety of appetizers for those attending.

Even with the cold and rain we had a nice turnout of 23 in attendance, but unfortunately there were no Vipers.

Our thanks to Mike for taking the time to plan these events, along with the staff at Griffin Claw.  Also, thanks to Ann Rappaport for the photos.

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2022 May Cruise Night - Griffin Claw Brewing

2022 Spring Tech Day

Our Spring Tech Day was held near the end of April and as we mentioned in a previous entry, the weather has been all over the map.  Earlier in the week we had 2 inches of snow, and literally 5 days later they were calling for 80-degree weather for the weekend. Unfortunately, the evening prior to the Tech Day we had some rain, and the roads were still wet.  With all this uncertainty, we still had a great turnout of 12 Vipers and 51 attendees.

Our Motorsports Director, Paul McClorey found a unique location for all of us gearheads. Thanks to our host, Lee Carducci, we were able to visit McLaren Engineering.  Given the specialized nature of their business, we were asked not to take any photos inside, thus you’ll only see our group in the lobby or outside.  This did not diminish our tour, since we were able to view their fantastic facility and their state-of-the-art capabilities.  They say it best: “The Mobility segment is subdivided into three regional groups: North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Within the Mobility segment, the regional groups are vertically integrated operations combining expertise in light metal casting, forging, machining and assembly for both the global electrified and traditionally powered vehicle markets.

The Mobility segment products are focused on both components and systems for new energy powertrains, body and chassis, driveline, engine and transmission systems of these vehicles. In addition to the recently formed eLIN Product Solutions Group that focuses on Electrification, McLaren Engineering provides design, development, and testing services for the Mobility segment.

Seeing the groundbreaking that is going on today for electric vehicles, there is still nothing sweeter than the sound of a high-performance gas engine running on their dyno.

The club provided coffee and donuts prior to the tour and our Cruise Maestro, Bob Swartz, found and led, those that wanted to have lunch, to a nice restaurant, near Walled Lake.

Our thanks to Lee and his staff for coming in on Saturday, to show us their facility.  We also want to thank Paul and Bob for their efforts in setting up the event and lunch.  Paul has recently come on the Board but is already finding unique events for us to do, and Bob is a “rock star” in the club for his contributions all year long.

(Note: To view all photos for this event, move your mouse or cursor toward the picture, then click on the directional arrows that will appear.)  You may also click on a photo where you’ll be sent to Flickr and can download your favorite.
2022 Spring Tech Day

2022 April Cruise Night – 5th Tavern

Here we are in the third week of April and two days before our Cruise night, we had 2 inches of snow.  On the day of the event, the snow is gone, but we barely hit 50 degrees, and there has been a light rain.

Our Cruise Night host, Mike Cipponeri, brought us back to the always enjoyable, 5th Tavern.  They never disappoint with great food and service.  The menu has a wide variety of choices and everything we’ve ordered has always been very tasty.

Considering it was a cold, gray evening, we had 30 intrepid souls come out for a fun evening to see old friends.  Many of our members travel to warmer weather during the winter and this is the first time we’ve seen some of our friends in months.

We even had 2 courageous members (Mike Sutton and Dave Buchesky) who brought their Vipers.  Our thanks to Mike and his lovely wife, Diane, for putting on an enjoyable evening and making us all feel so welcome.

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2022 April Cruise Night - 5th Tavern

2022 Winter Party

Our Winter Party is traditionally held in late February but with many of our members on vacation it was held in late March this year.  Unfortunately, winter is not letting go anytime soon.  Our temps were in the low 30’s with the “real feel” around mid-20’s.  You can tell that everyone is anxiously awaiting spring.

This is our second event at the Italian American Cultural Center, on the east side.  The food and service are great, and their prices are very fair.  With their pricing and the club subsidy, we were able to offer an open bar, for the same price as last year, with a cash bar, at another location.

The food is served buffet style, with a wide variety of entree selections, along with salad and desert.  After dinner the members played various “Vegas” games (roulette, blackjack), along with our very popular Viper Racing.  The games are all for fun and in the end, prizes are awarded randomly, with raffle tickets.  Almost everyone is a winner!  Diane also had a few extra gifts to raffle off, so hopefully no one went home empty-handed.

During the evening, tickets were sold for the 50/50 raffle and our big winner was Mike Prudhomme.  Congrats Mike!

We had one of the largest turnouts in years with 54 in attendance.

Our sincere thanks to Mike and Diane Cipponeri. Their love of the club and its members shows in every event they plan.  We also want to thank the blackjack dealers and volunteers who helped with setup and cleanup.

(Note: To view all photos for this event, move your mouse or cursor toward the picture, then click on the directional arrows that will appear.)  You may also click on a photo where you’ll be sent to Flickr and can download your favorite.
2022 Winter Party