Couple of the Year

2019 Michigan Couple of the Year and Wingless Weekend

Julian & Mary Jo Meade

Wingless Weekend 2019 was the biggest weekend that Mary Jo and I have ever experienced. We were chosen as the 2019 Michigan Couple of the Year. We were shocked but proud to represent our home chapter D-2, Howell, Rick and Sherry Birchmeier, Chapter Directors; and Rob and Pam Robinson, Assistant District Directors were a great help in preparing us for the COY Review, and offered encouragement to us through the entire weekend.

If you did not attend this event you missed having a great time. You also lost a good chance to blow off some winter “Cabin Fever” which everyone has by February in a Michigan winter. Wingless Weekend was held at the Lakeside Resort & Conference Center, right on Houghton Lake and was only about 2-hours from our home in Brighton.  Besides being a nice hotel to stay at, it also offers great snow- mobiling and ice fishing by walking out the back door to the lake’s edge that is only 50 feet away.

Friday night was special because we had a great steak dinner in the Hotel’s restaurant with a chapter friend.  As it turned out we had a special guest at our table. Sitting with us was “Dandy” Don Smith who was made Individual of the Year for 2019. “Dandy Don” will be a real credit to the position. He has a lot of energy and enough personality for 2-people.

On Saturday morning, we attended a safety seminar put on by Brent & Sandy Blackburn. The seminar hits some good points on riding in the rain or any type of foul weather for the upcoming riding season. Plus Sandy settled a big question for me on the issue of “Frog Togs V. Tour Master” rain suits.  After the seminar I drifted over to the registration desk to look at the winning numbers that we had on our bracelets.  I was one number off from winning an Atomic Clock. I had #125 and the winning number was #124. First thing I thought was what luck off by one number.  I looked in the office and Mary Jo was carrying the Atomic Clock under her arm; she won it. Mary Jo was #124! We now have an Atomic Clock in our family room.

Carol Williams, the Michigan COY Director walked us through the entire process and guided us from one event to the other. That was a big help.  Friday afternoon, we started the Couple of the Year process by talking to 3-sets of Chapter Leaders who were very experienced and former COYs themselves. In fact one couple was Rick & Debbie, the 2018 International Couple of the Year who came from Indiana to attend Wingless Weekend.

Some of the questions were hard because they made really think about what the GWRRA means to you. All the questions were fair with no trick answers, most questions required you express your personal feelings and experiences in the GWRRA. We learned a lot talking to these experienced couples.

Saturday night, we gave a 5-minute speech in front of entire group telling them about ourselves. This was the easiest part because after 11 years of membership in the GWRRA,   Mary Jo and I had a box car load of fun and experiences visiting other chapters and so many wonderful memories touring around the state and the country. If we started with the beginning when we bought our Goldwing we could have stood on the stage for 5-hours.

Mary Jo and I are the 2019 Michigan Couple of the Year, and we have a mission to encourage all the chapters to choose and honor their COYs and encourage them to go through the process to become the 2020 Couple of the Year for Michigan.

The Couple of the Year Review is painless and is very confidence building for those that participate. You might be the Chapter COY and asking yourself what would I say? The answer to the question is easy; simply speak from your heart and mind and tell your story. You would be surprised how many people want to hear it.

Fun and friendship is the glue that keeps the GWRRA together. If you did not attend the 2019 Wingless Weekend, you missed a lot. Don’t let “cabin fever” set in next winter. Make your plans early to attend the 2020 Wingless Weekend and talk it up with your Chapter. It’s a lot more fun to attend with your good friends.

We were so happy that we attended the 2019 Wingless Weekend and that we had decided to try the Couple of the Year. It was good to see our friends again and we hope to see even more friends in 2020 at the next Wingless Weekend. We hope to see YOU there.

Visit our NEW Michigan District Individual Of The Year Webpage!

The most visible part at all levels of GWRRA is the "Couple of the Year Program". Beginning at the Chapter level, this is a method of honoring couples for their commitment to the ideals of the GWRRA. After serving as their Chapter Couple they can attend their District's selection process. Later the District Couples may attend their Region's selection process and eventually the Region Couples can move on to the International Couple of the Year selection process at Wing Ding. We encourage all the Chapters to honor your fellow Couples and participate in the "Couple of the Year Program". If you have any questions please feel free to email or call.

The following link will take you to the GWRRA Membership Enhancement Program's Page for Couple of the year where you can find the most up to date information about the Couple of the Year Program as well as the Program Manual, Score Sheet and the most current resume.

mep.gwrra.org/coy.html

For more information contact: Chapter Couple of the Year Coordinator: Carol Williams at 517-262-6314