#139a Moonshine Lunch Run

Fleeter Log #139a
Moonshine Lunch Run
2009 April 15-18

It's April, so it's Moonshine Time again! Time for riders far and near to answer the call to join Terry Hammond for lunch in Moonshine, Illinois where the hamburgers are made one at a time with love by Helen and her crew at the Moonshine General Store.

5th Annual Moonshine Lunch Run (MLR)

Since this event started in 2005, the number of riders responding to the call has grown from 30 attending the first MLR to over 600 riding to southern Illinois this year to have a moonburger with Terry.

This will be my third year to join in the camaraderie.

Entire trip  here on SpotWalla:
Day 1 - Wednesday
April 15, 2009
405 miles

 Fredericksburg, VA to Grayson, KY

I started rolling at 11:00am and headed westward in a misty drizzle. This will be the first trip out of state for the F650GS twin. I've had it for 8 months and have only taken it on a few short trips within Virginia. The last few months I've spent coming up with ways to personalize the GS to serve as a long distant rider.

Some changes you may notice are the taller touring windscreen with a support bar to mount the GPS onto, FendaExtender, crashbars, bash plate, aerostich panniers, Hawkeoiler, etc.

This trip will only be starting when I reach Moonshine IL. From there, I will continue my way to Texas, Southern California, Utah, and back home through Ohio before arriving back home in mid-May. With the wet weather and temps in the 40s, I will be wearing my BMG jacket and carrying my mesh jacket strapped to my duffle.
Today is just about getting down the road, closer to Illinois. There won't be any photos to share or stories worth telling. It is an uneventful ride through Virginia, West Virginia, and into Kentucky.

I arrive in Grayson, Kentucky at 6:40pm and check-in to the Quality Inn. After getting the GS unloaded, I have supper next door at Long John Silvers. Tomorrow I will begin Flower Sniffin' as I find the back roads to Moonshine.

Day 2 - Thursday
April 16, 2009
380 miles

View Larger Map
Grayson, KY to Casey, IL

I thoroughly enjoyed highway 10 from Vanceburg, KY to I75. It's like being on a kiddie roller coaster for about 80 miles through rural Kentucky. I love these kind of roads! Not any still photos along here . . . Maybe I'm still in a "no photo mode" left over from yesterday or maybe I am concentrating on getting to know the GS and not thinking so much about photos. I did make a couple movie clips using the RAM mount on the handlebar. I may add a video clip here later. But trust me, KY10 is a great little back road!

Madison, IN sets on the banks of the Ohio River along the Kentucky-Indiana state line. I spent enough time in Madison to find the river walk area and stop for a few photos.

The river walk area of Madison, Indiana.

Highway 7 leaves Madison heading north gaining elevation as it twists its way past a nice waterfall.

After passing through Columbus and Bloomington Indiana, I cross another state line into Illinois at Hutsonville on highway 154 and find my way to hwy 2 to Annapolis, Illinois.

The sun is shining and I've NEVER SEEN MOONSHINE IN THE SUNLIGHT. So I decide to ride by and see what the Moonshine General Store looks like with the sun shining on it and an empty parking lot.
Moonshine, Illinois
Helen and Roy of Moonshine fame. They live above the store and came down to say hello when they saw the VA license plate. They knew that it must be someone arriving early for the "rush on moonburgers" planned for Saturday. Helen said she's expecting a large crowd since the weather is nice this year (for a first) and she's ready!
Helen & Roy of Moonshine

I gave Helen a hug and told her I'd be back Saturday for my moonburger, then continued my way to Casey where Terry was hosting a cookout in his backyard for those arriving early.

It's a good thing Terry has a huge yard! I'm not sure how many showed up, but I know it was too many for me to actually meet everyone there. The motorcycles were lined up along the street in front of his house and stretched around the corner, down the side street and all the way to the next cross street! What I'm trying to say is . . . there were a lot of motorcycles and people there! As I made a U-turn and came back to the end of the side street a 1/2 block from his back yard, folks were coming up talking to me before I could even get my kickstand down. The party was in full swing when I arrived, but there was plenty food left and I eventually made my way to it. I saw a lot of friends and met even more.

It's after 9:00pm when I arrive at the Comfort Inn of Casey (host hotel) where I have reservations for the next three nights. The hotel's 52 rooms are totally booked up and I'd venture to say that 99.8% of their customers for the next few days are friends of Terry Hammond. And if you know Terry, you will understand the significance of that important percentage designation.

Day 3 - Friday
April 17, 2009
51 miles

The next couple days will be minimal mileage days. I'll only ride to join Moonshine friends for meals. Today's lunch is being served to us by the Stovepipe Restaurant at the Lincoln Springs Resort in Charleston, IL. We have the entire backroom reserved and they are set up to feed us using a buffet line. Choices are limited, but what's presented to us is excellent.
Stovepipe Restaurant near Charleston, Illinois
(click on any photo to enlarge)

Me, riding with some of my Goldwinger friends through the back roads of Coles & Clark Counties of Illinois.

(photo of me by Ray Williams of Alabama)

On the way back to Casey, I stopped at the Oilfield Store on highway 40 about 5 miles north of I70. This is another small local grill with a reputation for good burgers. I'll have to try them one of the days when I return to the area.

My good friends, Pat and Greg of Kentucky, showed up to collect a bonus as they participated in the Cape Fear 1000 Rally. To collect the bonus, they had to ride to Casey, IL and take a photo with Terry Hammond holding their rally flag at Richard's Farm Restaurant during a two hour time window. They arrived early and came by the hotel to say hello to moonshiners. I was happy to see them!

The Friday night's meal is the main gathering where the most of us will be at one place at the same time and Terry takes this opportunity to thank everyone for joining him for the weekend. He also has cool little engraved metal awards he gives to those riders that traveled the farthest to join him for a moonburger. I got one for being in the Top 50. Last year I was in the Top 25 Long Distance Riders. Goes to show how many more riders from farther away have shown up this year. If Terry isn't careful, this MLR thing just might grow into a huge affair! umh! Ya think?!

Arriving for the Friday night supper at Richard's Farm Restaurant.
Richard's Farm Restaurant in Casey, Illinois

Day 4 - Saturday
April 18, 2009
30 miles

Finally! The day has arrived. How many moonburgers do you think Helen will sell today? A good answer would be . . . A WHOLE LOT OF THEM!

The line of hungry moonies.

Helen works on the honor system at Moonshine. You go order you burger, watch as they make it, go to the counter and tell Helen what you're paying for. She or her helper (today she has lot's of helpers) ring you up. I let her know that I would also grab a cola and a bag of chips on my way out to the picnic tables.

Here I am sharing a chuckle with our guy, Terry Hammond. I waited in line for over 40 minutes for my chance at a moonburger. When this photo was taken I'd already eaten, but you can see the line in the background. Some hungry folks were still waiting to get in and get their moonburger.
Terry Hammond with me at Moonshine
(photo by RonJS)

Normally Helen turns the grill off at 12:30pm sharp, but today she said she'd keep flipping burgers as long as there were people waiting in line. I sure hope Terry eventually gets his burger. Terry always says that he will always wait and bring up the rear after everyone else has had a chance to get their burger and he'll be the last one to ride his motorcycle away from the Moonshine General Store. I sure hope he had a good breakfast . . .

By the time Helen turned off the grill, she had sold 1,119 moonburgers! This is a new record for "moonburgers sold" in one day! Per Terry's count, there were 600 motorcycles in the parking lot and 700 people that showed up to join him for a burger in Moonshine, Illinois. Yep. This just might grow into a huge affair.

I've had my two moonburgers (I didn't have breakfast) and am ready to head back into Casey to visit with a few of Terry's friends and kick tires in the hotel parking lot.

Until next year . . . Bye Helen. Love your burgers!
(photo by RonJS)

Tomorrow I leave Casey heading westward.

Copyright 2009 Fleeter Logs


  1. this is exactly what I look for in a travel log...very nice photos, and excellent dialog to go with it!
    I'm coming back!

  2. Thank you Chessie. Glad you are enjoying my Fleeter Logs. Good to have you riding along!

  3. I see you are going to Forksville PA. The place to go, of course is the Forksville General store. It is right next to the Forksville covered bridge. You can stay at the World's End State Park.

  4. You are RIGHT! That is exactly where I'll be on Saturday. Not camping out, but at the General Store. If you're in the area, join us for lunch!

  5. Are you headed back to Moonshine this year? Looks like you've taken a couple years off, and as you predicted, it has become bigger than ever. last year, great weather and a big gathering, although it was first year without Terry, it was still a great event.