RPM4x4 – Community Service
Minnesota’s RPM4x4 Club Wows The Crowd At A 4×4 show!
Editor: Eric Bewley Story/Photo: Mike Hagen
Forest Lake MN – Church outings are about cake walks and pancake breakfasts right? Not always. The pastor at Marantha Assembly of God in Forest Lake MN drives a stock car and also rides a Harley. His different personality puts a breath of fresh air into this church community and that enthusiasm can be felt from every parishioner. This group really knows how to let loose and have fun. For 18 years now, Marantha has been hosting a car show as an outreach to the community to raise awareness for their church. In the corner of the parking lot there is a burn out box that they use every year at the end of the car show. The last couple of years theyve had a monster truck that they drive over some cars. There must be a catch right? There is not. You wouldnt have even realized that you were at a church until the end of the award show when they say Now that you know where we are, feel free to stop by for one of our services
A few members of the RPM club go to Marantha. Last year after the show was over, Blake Savage, a member of the RPM club took his Samurai and drove over one of the cars that were left. This sparked a discussion of having an off-road show for next years car show addition.
When this concept was brought to the rest the RPM group we though it was a great idea, but were a little nervous since we had never 4 wheeled for anyones entertainment but our own before. Concern came up that the church wouldnt be able to deliver enough of a challenge to a flat 3 acre lot. None of us wanted to do a show that we wouldnt be proud of when we were done. A couple weeks before the show I heard of what obstacles they had. To say the least I was pleasantly surprised. Arnt construction donated 2 large dump truck loads of rock, Swedes towing donated a pair of cars and Royal concrete donated some giant concrete tubes. The exciting thing for us was we had never driven over concrete tubes before. Some of these tubes were over 4 ½ feet tall! We showed up a couple of days in advance to practice on the tubes so we could pick some lines over them. None of us had ever wheeled on tubes before so we were a little concerned. This time was also allotted to instruct how we wanted the jump to be made. Eric Bergum was driving the bobcat and I must say that he has a lot of patience for putting up with our revisions. None of us had ever built a jump before. I think he spent 5 hours alone just building and changing our jump. He also donated countless hours of bobcat work all week long to put it all together. It was amazing to see so many people dedicated to doing whatever they could to make it the best show they could get. Without all these efforts RPM could not have put on a show at all.
The show was made up of seven Suzuki vehicles, three samurais, three trackers, and one half samurai-half tracker mix. If you look close at the black Sami in the photos you will notice that it has a sidekick frame and suspension.
The day of the show we show up early to get settled in. Our area has been in a severe drought for months, so the course was setup with dry conditions in mind. Unfortunately Mother Nature decided that today was a good day to end the drought, in a big way. Any other day rain would have been very welcomed but unfortunately we got rained out pretty badly. Rain and car show obviously dont mix so we knew attendance would be down quite a bit. However, all this preparation wasnt going to waste. We looked at the positive side and decided this would be a good learning experience with less pressure from a smaller audience. On the side of the course we see that there was a large box truck. Perrys portable welding was there to be assisting us with an onsite shop throughout the day. His truck was set up with everything you can think of and was really helpful throughout the day. This was especially helpful this day because we were not going to be able to finesse through the obstacles as planned. We had to pick new lines that were possible in the rain to put on a show. Today wasnt about just making the obstacle, but doing it in a spectacular way. The show started just as the rain started to fall. We all scrambled to get in any moves we thought would not be possible once it got muddy.
By the end of the show we looked like we had bathed in the mud and wet to the bone! We must have been doing something right for a crowd of people to stand in the pouring rain and watch. When it was all said and done we were asked if we would be willing to do it again next year, which we responded with a definite yes. Hopefully we will get to.
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