Road Trip!: Daytona Beach, FL & The Turkey Rod Run

It was an early morning roll out on Thanksgiving morning to Daytona Beach and the 39th Annual Turkey Rod Run. I had a picture of the clock in the jeep but I can’t find it now but it said 3:45. Any way it was early but it was also early the last 23 or so times we headed out on Thanksgiving morning for Daytona!

Our first stop was for the traditional Hardee’s breakfast in Baxley, Georgia. Why its a tradition I’m not sure, but it is. We just always stop there, always have, probably always will.

After that it was on to the Sunshine state! We crossed the Florida line sometime right before 11 am according to my facebook check in time.

Our first gas stop was just outside of Jacksonville right before turning onto 985. The Jeep did great on gas on the way down. It got 23.6 mpg’s according to the on dash monitor. Gas was 3.29 a gallon.

From there it was all open roads to Daytona Beach. On those roads, I have my first real complaints about my Jeep after having it for almost a year. Number one, the stock hood latches suck, I felt like my hood was going to fly up at any minute. I’ve never noticed it before because around home 60-65 is about as fast as I ever get but 75-80 is when the problem really starts to occur. Number two anything past 80 and this thing hard to keep in the road if there is any wind at all blowing. Thankfully I don’t have to drive on the interstate very often in it!

We arrived in Daytona about 12:30.

I REALLY wanted to drive the Jeep on the beach but when we got there it was high tide and the ramps were closed. Actually I think it must be high tide in Daytona all the time now. I remember for years there was plenty of beach to drive on, walk on, etc. But now the water is so close it would have been hard to walk on the beach without getting your feet wet let alone drive on it.

Hard to see but the high tide/ramp closed sign is off in the distance.

We were staying at the Makai in Ormand Beach. While I am glad to say they finally installed separate ac units in each room if you want a good internet connection STAY SOMEWHERE ELSE! I’m not sure what was going on but I couldn’t even get my Verizon Hotspot to work. No internet=bad when you are trying to upload pictures and update a blog with daily event coverage!

The Jeep @ The Beach!!

Had to make my customary trip out to see the ocean and make sure it was still there. Not much of a beach fan myself but I do like to look at it.

From the house to the motel it was 506 miles. I ended up averaging 21.9 miles per gallon. I’m not sure if the difference was from running 60-65 to 75-80 or if it was the fact that I had premium in it on the first tank and regular in it on the 2nd. Either way its not horrible gas mileage.

After a quick rest in the room it was time to make the quick drive up to Bellair Plaza for a little hot rod action. For those not familiar with The Turkey Rod Run Bellair Plaza is the some what unofficial gathering of cars each night in a huge parking lot in Ormand Beach. In years past it was pretty wild with tons of burn outs and street racing but now things have calmed down just a little but it is still lots of fun.

For the event coverage from Thursday night at Bellair Plaza CLICK HERE

After that we were off to find something for Thanksgiving Dinner. That is always a fun task when most places are closed for the holiday. But like I said after 20+ years of Turkey Rod Run’s I am used to it. So we finally settled on the Starlite Diner. Its a 50’s themed place, pretty cool. Decent food but way overpriced!

The next morning we were up bright and early and heading out to the track for the main part of the show!

After a quick traditional stop at Roosters Cafe we were ready to hit the show! We’ve been eating at Roosters since the late 90’s when they were still doing the Corvette Expo when it was in Knoxville, TN at Chilhowee Park.

I posted this picture on twitter @jdsmotorsports and I will share it on here. This is my idea of black Friday shopping!

There was a big crowd at the Turkey Rod Run. Defiantly the most packed I have ever saw it on a Friday spectator wise anyway. You could hardly walk!


Keeping with the sharing of food tradition these trip blogs seemed to have taken on. Here is what was for lunch! Roasted corn, believe me it looked a lot better than it tasted!

We battled the crowd till about 2:30 and then it was back to the motel room. Didn’t buy a whole lot this year but I will share what I got, after all swap meet finds buys are always cool to look at!

Yes, I know, I have a sticker problem.

Battery disconnects, gotta have ’em!

Those who watch my video’s on youtube will be proud that I got some new oldies CD’s!

And of course the pile of flyers and business cards of stuff I will probably never buy.

Remember those stickers from a minute ago? Well I put part of them to use. I am collecting vintage state decal’s for every state the Jeep has been to and putting them on the inside of my top. I am also collecting event and special location stickers for the rear hatch. Added a couple!

Had to have this cool vintage Jeep sticker when I saw it!

Gotta have the moon eyes!

After a quick rest it was off to Bellair Plaza for some more fun.


Did someone say food? You gotta have a little seafood when you come to the beach!

Whew, after that meal it was time to head back to the room and pack up and get ready for home!

I mentioned our early morning roll outs, well I lost the first picture but here is proof of the second one!

We had an uneventful ride home. Made it in about 1pm just in time to head to the deer stand for a little afternoon deer hunt.

After hunting, with no luck I might add, me and a couple of buddies decided it would be a good night to do a little back woods trail riding. So after all the on road highway miles the Jeep got over the weekend she got to play a little bit off road as well. When I rolled back into the house I had put 1099.5 miles on it and according to the trip timer had spent exactly 25 hours behind the wheel.

Well that is all for this Road Trip! Blog. Hope you enjoyed it!

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