Good reunion

Thanks to all of you who could break loose and spend the day Saturday at Sequoyah State Park. We had a great turnout (about 70) and the air conditioning was “mahvelous”. The surrounding park was beautiful, and while driving through the pines to the facility, I spotted about a dozen wild turkey hens scavenging through the pine needles. Several people came to me and told me they really liked the facility, and asked me to book it next year. I will research all of the available camp sites at the park, including the group camp facility. I plan to try to set aside a “room block” at the main lodge (Western Hills Lodge). There are cabins and several prices of rooms, and if a few families really want to make a full weekend event at the park, they could reserve one of the rooms. Since we are not at the mercy of Lutherhoma to book particular weekends, we can be more flexible with our dates. Some have suggested a cooler time of the year while school is out. My first thought would be for a date around the third weekend in June. I realize that any date during the summer would be vulnerable to certain ones being on vacation. One influencing factor would be the availability of facilities at the park. Give me your thoughts on the date change.

Thanks to everyone for the plaque, card and the hand-carved cedar cane crafted by our patriarch Uncle Johnny, and presented to me just before lunch. It was a show of appreciation for the 35 enjoyable years I have spent as the organizer of the reunion. This made my weekend and my year, and I truly was overwhelmed by the gesture.

Larry

From 2011-08-20 Jones Reunion 2011
From 2011-08-20 Jones Reunion 2011

The 45th Annual Descendants of Ransom Jones Reunion

Lutherhoma out….Sequoyah State Park in.

Dear Joneses:

Yesterday I received the new contract from Lutherhoma and was shocked to
find rate increases that I feel to be unaffordable. Camp Director John
Busch had assured me that the rate increases would be very modest, but I
guess his superiors overruled him. Since we have struggled over the years
to collect the $5 per person for the Saturday camp visit, I felt the new
rate of $11 for the Saturday session was over the top. Lutherhoma’s weekend
rate more than doubled… from $21 to $44. Therefore, at the risk of
ruffling a few feathers, I had to scramble to find a workable alternative
and destination for this year’s 45th Descendants of Ransom Jones Reunion.
At the upcoming event, we can discuss plans for future reunions, so I would
like everyone to come prepared with a suggestion or two on future locations.

For this year, I have booked the Cherokee Pavilion at Sequoyah State Park (8
miles east of Wagoner) for Saturday, August 20. The total charge for the
group for the weekend is $150 plus a refundable $100 cleaning deposit. Plan
on spending $4 for each person you bring age 5 and above. If our attendance
is good we can probably lower it to $3. We can have access to the building
from 7:30 a.m. until 11 p.m. The building is air conditioned and has an
attached screened-in area that should work well for overflow conditions.
The facility is 2400 square feet including the screened-in area. There are
55 chairs and 16 eight foot tables furnished. I suggest we all bring a
couple of lawn or folding chairs to finish out the requirement, as we have
had as many as 100 guests in past years. There is a food prep area
consisting of a counter some 10′ long with sink and cabinets. There is also
a residential type refrigerator. This means we need to bring ice chests to
keep the food until time to serve. Closer to time for the reunion we will
call for volunteers to bring extra ice, etc.

The Cherokee Pavilion is located some 200′ from the Fort Gibson Lake water’s
edge and there is a boat ramp nearby. Just outside the pavilion entrance is
a brand new state-of-the-art bath house with modern showers and handicap
accessible toilets. There are RV pads with electric and water available…
only a few feet away that rent for $25 per night through the headquarters
office. Some of you may wish to come down Friday night and park your rig,
and have access to your RV during the day for naps, etc…..or stay
overnight Saturday into Sunday to relax the next day at the park.

I have attached photos above, and will send a map of the park in a separate email.

From Sequoyah State Park

>Click here for larger version of the map<
Let’s make the upcoming reunion a great one and future ones even greater.
Thanks for your understanding and participation.
Larry (quite contrary) Briggs

Message from Ronnie Jones

I have been so looking forward to this reunion. I didn’t get to come last year because we were in transition from Colorado back to Oklahoma and I was trying to get our house ready to sell. I want to walk the old trails again that I explored as a child. Hear the crunch of the flint rock on my tires as we drive in. Ring the big bell by the old open air tabernacle. Hear the slam of the screen door on the kitchen/dining hall. The clang of horse shoes out front. The gurgle of the slow moving green tinted Illinois River as it is forced over the sun bleached gravel bars. I want to hear Christian say “hey-hey-hey man” again, the strum of James on the guitar, the echo of laughter and singing. All of these things and many more I’ve listened to from the audio archives of my memory and long to hear them “live” once again.

Some sounds will have to remain in the archives of my mind, as those who made those beautiful notes have gone on to meet the Lord. But I thank them for their part in shaping my life none-the-less. The good Lord knows I love the old time feeling, principles, fellowship, and memories that these great old timers contributed to my life. Descendants of Ransom Jones, we are very blessed indeed.

I would also like to say that those wonderful folks that have left us here on earth, I want to see them again over there. To hear the ring of their voices and feel their arms around me as we embrace on the other side. I?ll insist on hearing once again the songs they sang here. Songs like ?Something got a hold of me?, and ?I?m in love with Jesus? along with many others. As the old hymn says; ?…with their voices clear and strong.? The angels will just have to stand and wait until we are through. We’ll show all of heaven how to have a reunion. Just save me a place with the family around the table over there, and to whomever it was that pulled the gravy bowl apart, you must not sit opposite of one another.

By the way, I’m positive that they would welcome anyone else who would like to join in the journey to meet them on the other side of Jordan. I can hear them now. Come on now child. You’ve been shown the way. Just follow my foot steps and they’ll lead you home. The same God that kept me, will keep you too.
To those who are on the path that leads to life everlasting, hold fast to that thou hast, that no man take thy crown. Looking unto Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith.
Ronnie Jones

44th Annual Descendents of Ransom Jones Reunion

Hey fellow Joneses:
The 44th Annual Descendents of Ransom Jones Reunion will be held at Camp Lutherhoma, on the Illinois River east of Tahlequah, Oklahoma, from noon Friday, August 20, through noon Sunday, August 22, 2010. Everyone is encouraged to bring covered dishes and desserts on Saturday to share with others (Kentucky Fried will do in a pinch).

The rates will probably be the same as last year, but I haven’t received the contract yet. Last year, guests staying overnight Friday were charged $14 which included Saturday’s daytime schedule. If you stayed the entire weekend, the total charge was $21 ($7 for staying overnight Saturday night to Sunday). If you only attended Saturday, the charge was $5 per person paid to the camp for the privilege of being on grounds and using the facilities.

Some have thought this was a meal fee, but that is not the case. Camp Lutherhoma charges us this discounted fee as a compromise amount for those not staying overnight. If you bring guests you are responsible for their $5 Saturday fee. Children 4 years of age and younger have not been charged in the past. Air-conditioned dormitory rooms are available, and private cabins (with fans) that will accommodate entire families can be used at no extra charge. Hotels are available in Tahlequah for persons wishing to stay off-campus at night.

Directions for driving to Camp Lutherhoma are listed here. You may also want to visit www.lutherhoma.com. By the way, if you have email addresses of others who may want to receive these updates, please forward them to my email address. I no longer send out letters, so if you have family members who won’t share their email addresses, please advise them of the dates.

As always, please bring photographs even if you brought them last year. If you have had changes to the down line on your family tree, please write down births, deaths, marriages, etc. so that I can add them to the master tree. Ransomjones.com courtesy of Brad and Randall Murphy.

Again we encourage some of you to stay over Saturday night to help with the cleanup, as well as enjoy the refreshing and rewarding Sunday morning breakfast.

As soon as I see the finished contract I will notify everyone of any rate changes. See you there!

Larry Briggs