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If you have already earned any patches and you change chapters or join a chapter or resign a chapter and become an MAL, please indicate this on your application. The Grand Tour Master Rocker and Coins are dependent upon accurate record keeping and all Grand Tour records are catagorized in a Chapter or as an MAL.
What is Grand Tour?
When the club was young, the easiest way to tell others about it was by word of mouth. This meant that the members had to get out to visit other firefighters, and one of the best ways to do that was to visit Fire Stations. Someone came up with the idea of rewarding members who made a certain number of visits with a certificate and a pin. Proof of these visits was needed and so the idea of Grand Tour was born. After visiting Fire Stations beginning with the letters G R A N D T O U R members were given a pin. Over the years, other rides were added, RED KNIGHT and FIRE HOUSE rides and for members from remote areas, a ride to visit TWELVE STATIONS beginning with any letter of the alphabet. For those who want the ultimate, you can choose the ALPHABET tour which includes all the letters in the alphabet. WOW!
In the spring of 2009, it was decided to make some changes to the program. After numerous inquiries as to why we did not have a separate pin for each of the rides available, it was decided that we would offer a three inch patch (of the same design as the pin) with a rocker for each of the rides. A database will be kept to track who has completed the rides and when a member has completed all four of the shorter rides he will also be awarded a pin. When you have completed your visits simply fill out the application form and return it with your pictures to the Grand Tour Chairperson and he/she will send you your certificate and patch and rocker (or just the rocker if you already have a patch).
Photo albums (physical and electronic) will be kept displaying pictures of everyone who has completed the Grand Tour and will be available for viewing at all future conventions. Because of the large number of members completing rides and the number of photographs we now have on file, it is becoming harder to ensure that all the pictures will be at all future conventions (the 9 albums weigh almost 70 pounds). It was decided at the Board meeting in September of 2011 to scan all our photos and store them electronically. To that end we now have a new email address, firstname.lastname@example.org and we ask that, if possible, you send all pictures and applications there. Please make sure that your pictures are no larger than 100KB each. Until we can scan all existing photographs, only prints from the previous year will be available at the annual convention.
How do I earn a Grand Tour Patch, Rockers and Pin?
In order to earn a Grand Tour Certificate, Patch and Rocker you must, during the course of one (1) riding season, or for those of you lucky enough to be able to ride all year, one (1) calendar year, visit nine (9) fire Stations whose names begin with the letters GRAND TOUR, RED KNIGHT, FIRE HOUSE or Twelve stations beginning with any letter of the alphabet. You must have a picture of you and your motorcycle taken at each Station, with the name sign visible. Co-riders may also earn a Certificate, Patch and Rocker and a rider and co-rider may have their picture taken together. Group photos are OK as well if you are doing the Tour as a chapter. You must then complete an application form which can be down loaded from the ‘Downloadable Files’ page or you may fill out an ‘on line’ application and submit that (if you are doing a Tour as a group, you need only complete one (1) application form and attach a list of the names of the members who participated and if you are using the on line application just fill all the names on the applicable line). You must then send your photos and application to the Grand Tour Chairperson at email@example.com. Please make sure that your pictures are no larger than 100KB each.
As for the ALPHABET Ride there is no time limit so if you wish you may take more than one riding season to earn this Rocker.
When you have completed all five rides you will be sent a GRAND TOUR MASTER Certificate, Rocker and a Brag Coin. The Coin has the International Seal on the front and a picture of the Memorial Stone on the back and the inscription Grand tour Master on the outer rim (all awards will be retro-active to 2009 and will be sent to you before January 15, 2012).
PLEASE NOTE: since all future photos will be scanned so they may be stored electronically, we would prefer to receive them that way. They should be a maximum of 100KB in size. If you can, please send pictures and applications via email or if you must send them by snail mail please send photos on a disc or flash drive. Discs and flash drives will be returned to you with your certificates, patches and rockers.
The Board has also decided, on the recommendation of the Grand Tour Committee, that, due to the sheer numbers of pictures on file (some 8000 – 8500 by the end of 2012) we select one picture from each Tour submitted to the Committee and add that to a slide show that will be shown at future conventions. One photo from each Tour in our albums will be scanned and added to the slide show. All other photos will still be stored for future reference. This means that photo albums will no longer be on display in the Hospitality Room at Conventions. If you sent in photographs and you want to see all the pictures of your Tour please send a request to the Grand Tour Committee Chairperson no less than six weeks prior to the Convention so that arrangements can be made.
If you have any questions please email the Grand Tour Committee.
Where are fire stations in the US and Canada? These two links will assist you in finding the fire stations that you need for your Grand Tour.
If anyone in Europe and Australia or New Zealand know of web sites that idendity those fire stations, please contact the Web Master
Please send electronic copies of photos and applications to:
Online Tour applications are sent directly to the Grand Tour Chairperson with just the click on the Submit button. You must send your pictures in a separate email to the Grand Tour Chairperson. Online Applications will not be processed until all of the supporting photos have been received by the Grand Tour Chairperson.
Please send hard copies of photos and applications to:
Grand Tour Committee
c/o Henry Heideman
4926 County Road 45 - PO Box 83
Baltimore ON Canada K0K 1C0
Please send electronic photos and applications to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Q; May I use the same picture/station for different Tour applications?
A: You may use the same station for different Tours if you can't find another one beginning with that letter but we ask that you visit at a different time for each of the rides. The reason for this is to keep it fair for everyone; if we allowed our members to use the same picture over and over for the five rides, all five rockers could be earned by visiting 28 stations rather than the 65 required.
Q: If a fire station does not display a name sign, may I still use it?
A: Yes, but you will need to supply proof of the name of the community that it is in. You may take a picture of a nearby business that shows the town name or get a photo of the town sign to go along with the picture of the station.
Q: I am having a problem finding the letters X and Z for my Alphabet Tour, Where can I find them?
A: There are very few Xes to be found on the North American continent. The two most commonly used are Xenia OH and the Xerox factory in Webster NY (near Rochester) which has its own fire station.
Zs are a little more plentiful. The following are the most used - Zanesville OH, Zelienople PA, Zena OK or Zearing Iowa
Q: I have lost my vest, or, I have a second vest, can I get a second set of patches and rockers.
A: Yes. You may order them through the Grand Tour Chairperson at the cost of $5.00 for the 3 inch center patch and $2.50 for each rocker plus $2.00 for shipping and handling
Please make checks and money orders payable to Henry Heideman
(Our records will be checked and only rockers that you have earned will be shipped)
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