On the Road Again — Our 2018 BSD


Photo Credit: Jeff Noe
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With Spring finally showing some evidence of arrival and despite the cool temps and remnants of snow in the shade and on the north-facing slopes, it was a great joy to get out on the road in our MINIs for the 11th EIM Border Skirmish Drive (BSD) this past Saturday. Our rendezvous in Decorah at the trout hatchery offered some nice social time as well as fish feeding and Decorah Eagles watching (even live on our smart phones while standing under the nest). Even though northeast Iowa and southeast Minnesota had received a foot of snow three days earlier, the Driftless Region roads were amazingly clear, dry, and as twisty as ever. We enjoyed our lunch stop in Spring Grove, MN at the Ivy Grove Cafe followed by some of the best roads of the day. MN-76 north of Caledonia, County Road 13 west of Houston, and MN-43 south of Bratsberg are always among our local favorites.

Our final stop back in Decorah at the world famous Toppling Goliath Brewing Co. was a real treat, both in terms of the experience and the libations. Our group extends its sincere thanks to Director of Hospitality Josh White for the cheerful gift of his energy and time in providing us a special, dedicated tour of the TG Brewery operations. It’s truly an amazing place.

Photos from this event may be found in our Photo Gallery and are directly accessible using the following link:

Photos from the 11th EIM Border Skirmish Drive, Decorah and vicinity, 4-21-18

Our next events include the Quad City Gearheads Spring 61 Kartway Cruise Night from Davenport to Delmar on May 5th followed by the EIM MINIs in a Mountain Home down in Yellville, Arkansas on May 17th-20th.

Fun MINI times ahead!

Fusion Resolution

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After a two-week delay due to Mother Nature’s poor sense of humor (i.e., Springtime snow) it was nice to have blue skies for our EIM Spring Fusion Meet, Eat, and Race this past Saturday in Marion. It was great to enjoy the company of such a large number of MINIs and MINI folk. Our lunch at the Cibo Fusion Restaurant was superb, and the follow-on kart racing at nearby Speedeez Karting was an absolute blast.

EIM extends sincere thanks to Louanne & Phil N. for all of their planning and organization of this event, not to mention their accommodation of the revised date. It was an excellent choice of venue and much appreciated by everyone!

Photos from this event are in our Photo Gallery and are directly accessible using the following link:

Photos from the EIM Spring Fusion Meet, Eat, and Race, Marion, 4-7-18

Hope to see many of you on 4/21 for our first drive of the year, the traditional April Border Skirmish Drive. Can’t beat those Driftless Region motoring roads!

River City Recap

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Our thanks to everyone who withstood the sometimes wet, sometimes icy roads and managed to join us for the 2018 instantiation of the EIM Quad Cities Meet-n-Eat this past Saturday in Davenport. We were glad to have all of the great company!

Thanks to everyone for bringing along such a nice variety of treats to share. Special thanks to Steve & Juli B. for the always-appreciated Bent River libations. It was fun to have Kelly B. in the house, as well as the unexpected visit by Jay, Kristin, & Darla. Most of all, we thank Sandy & Denny B. for being such superb and gracious hosts again. Loved the special decor, hot sandwiches, and slideshow!

Photos from this event are in our Photo Gallery and are directly accessible using the following link:

Photos from the EIM Quad Cities Meet-n-Eat in Davenport, 2-24-18

Next up is Marion on March 24th. Food and karting. Be there or be square.

Chuffed at Such a Corker of a MINI Day

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It’s safe to say in our eleven years of existence we may never have had better weather for a January meet-up. The glorious skies and temperatures certainly added to the enjoyment at our EIM Meet-n-Eat at the Wig and Pen Pub held this past Saturday in Iowa City. Sincere thanks to all of the folks who came out and joined us for the good food and camaraderie.

Special thanks to Jake M. and also to Jeremiah & Britney S. and their two cute munchkins for making the trip over from Des Moines and for allowing us a close look at the F60 Countryman in both “S” and JCW livery. Congratulations to Cindy C. who blazed through the word scramble in short order and crushed the competition. For those who couldn’t attend and would like a crack at it, here’s a link:

EIM MINI Cooper Word Scramble

A few photos from this event have been added to our Photo Gallery and can be accessed directly using the following link:

Photos from the EIM Meet-n-Eat at the Wig and Pen Pub, Iowa City, 1-27-18

Hope to see you in Davenport on February 24th!

MTTS 2018 “Rally to the Rockies”

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MINI USA has published the official route for MINI Takes the States (MTTS) 2018. Separate east and west coast routes starting in Orlando, FL and Portland, OR, respectively, converge on Keystone, CO over an eight-day period from Saturday, 14 July to Sunday, 22 July.

More information is available on the main MTTS 2018 Website (<-link). You may also sign up for the MTTS 2018 mailing list at this site so you can remain abreast of information updates as they are released.

Looks like another adventure!

Happy Holidays!

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Eastern Iowa MINIs extends its best wishes to everyone for a joyous holiday season, a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Country Junction Wrap-Up

Thanks to everyone who joined us in Dyersville on 11/11 for our final get-together of the 2017 calendar year, the EIM Meet-n-Eat at the Country Junction. It was great fun looking back at all of the memories made over this past motoring year and sharing ideas for potential new adventures in 2018.

Congratulations to all of the annual EIM awardees who were recognized during our luncheon, and thanks to those who allowed us a laugh or two at their expense…always in good fun! The set of 2017 awards can be viewed at the following link:

2017 EIM Annual Recognition Awards

Congrats also to Brian & Tracy K., our 2017 EIM Motorists of the Year. Their two MINIs covered a lot of ground in 2017!

Photos from this event may be found in our Photo Gallery, directly accessible via the following link:

Photos from the EIM Meet-n-Eat at the Country Junction, Dyersville, 11-11-17

We hope all of our MINI motorists and their families have a joyful holiday season. Our next scheduled gathering is our traditional January meet-up at the Wig and Pen Pub in Iowa City, which is planned for Saturday, January 27th. See you then!

15th Annual MINI Fall Tour

EIM extends its sincere thanks to Jake M., Laura R., Jeff G., and all of the folks at the Central Iowa MINI Club for planning and leading this years 15th Annual Iowa MINI Cooper Fall Tour this past Saturday. The drive began in Pella and wound its way across south-central Iowa to a lunch in Eldon and a finish in Iowa City. The wet conditions did nothing to damper the spirits of the motorists or the fun time together.

Our Photo Gallery includes several Facebook-harvested photos of the drive. Credits are due to the motorists who shared them…thanks! They are directly accessible using the following link:

Photos from the 15th Annual Iowa MINI Cooper Fall Tour, 10-14-17

Our final event of 2017 is our annual Meet-in-Eat in Dyersville on November 11th, where we’ll look back on the year and reflect on all of the fun times. Hope you can make it!

How Do You Like Them Apples?

Our group of MINI folk had another fun drive up to Gays Mills, Wisconsin on 9/16 for the ’17 version of the now seemingly annual Gays Mills Apple Run. The weather was nicely cooperative and, as usual, the orchards, apples, apple slushes, apple cider doughnuts, apple pie and apple pizza a la mode–not to mention the curvy roads, fall colors, expansive views, and MINI companionship–were all superb. Several in the group made their return visit via the Potosi Brewing Company for some sampling of additional good stuff. Thanks to Sandy & Denny B. for leading us on some fine county roads and avoiding the road construction on US-61 north of Lancaster. Thanks also to the new folks who came out and joined us!

Photos may be found in our Photo Gallery, directly accessible via the following link:

Photos from the Gays Mills Apple Run, Gays Mills, 9-16-17

Hope to see you at the Fall Tour on October 14th!

Happy 10th Anniversary EIM!

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On August 31, 2007 a small group of MINI Cooper fans from various eastern Iowa communities gathered together for the first time at the Sonic Drive-In in Coralville. These folks had come to know of each other through posts made in an online MINI enthusiasts community and shared an interest in establishing an avenue to get together on occasion with their fellow Iowa MINI mates. Five weeks later, a smaller subset of folks met for breakfast in Dubuque, scratched out some ideas and action items on a napkin — and Eastern Iowa MINIs was born.

The Sonic Drive-In in Coralville no longer exists. Most (save a few) of those original MINI fans have left for other locales or ventures. All of those wonderful MINIs present that evening (except LEO!) have been sold or traded in (usually for another MINI). Yet EIM continues to thrive, bolstered by a wonderful cadre of genuinely good people who comprise the core of its MINI enthusiasm and an organizational formula that seeks to minimize bureaucracy and free people up to simply have fun together with their MINIs. As of its 10th Anniversary, EIM has either organized or participated in over 150 local, regional, or national MINI events! Every single one is documented in our Photo Gallery and it’s pretty cool to go back and revisit those early gatherings.

Here are the photos from that first get-together:

Coralville Sonic MINI Gathering, 8-31-07

See if there are people and MINIs you remember or still recognize. 🙂

Thanks to all for a wonderful 10 years. Here’s to 10 more!

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