About Us

The Open Road Project exists to spread kindness and meet the needs of strangers. We travel in a 1979 GMC Vanguard named Lily. These are our stories.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Calgary: Tribulation and Resolve.

Day 11:

Just as we reached the city we all heard it happen: the gutwrenching crunch of metal and seizing of engine belts. We looked at Josh, he stepped on the gas and nothing happened…

Uh oh.

We puttered our whimpering RV to a familiar site, a Value Village parking lot where we could deal with our problem. The issue was clearly transmission related, but how in this big new city, with a vehicle that wont gear up, were we going to get our RV to a transmission shop on the eve of a long weekend?

So we prayed.

And we looked around.

Coincidentally, the auto park that was directly behind us had a transmission specialist. Could prayers really be answered so quickly?

So we brought her over for a $50 dollar look and regrettably, our man George did not have any good news for us. The transmission was completely shot and on the eve of the long weekend everyone would be shut until Tuesday. Thankfully for us George was a nice and generous man. He had Buick tranny on the shelf and if his mechanics would agree to work late Friday night and even come in on Saturday of their long weekend, he could have us back on the road by Saturday afternoon. What a blesing! However, there were still two obstacles that needed facing. 1. What were we going to do tonight if our home is in the shop? 2: It was going to set us back about 157 887 pennies.

Jeremy’s cousin Becky and her husband Paul more than solved our first problem. We took public transit to their neighborhood where Becky picked us up brought us home. They forced us to eat a nice dinner, relax in their great home and sleep in real beds. They had to leave for a wedding the next day so they even let us sleep in, eat breakfast and stay alone in their home until we felt good and ready to leave. Imagine that! A cousin and four complete strangers and they trusted us to stay alone in their house. Awesome. (Small video to come)

Around Noon, the following day we got news from George that our vehicle/home would be finished shortly so we packed up and trained it back into the city centre. Taking a familiar exit we were on the hunt for Subway when we stumbled across a HUGE MCC thrift shop. Walking up to the back doors (only because we mistook them for the front) we were met by John a volunteer at the store that jokingly ask us if we were be there to help. We kind of caught him by surprised when we consented and said we’d love to help out (he later confessed to us that we looked like intimidating roughiens as we approached with our big packs).

Our short stay volunteering at MCC was GREAT. We repaired furniture, priced items, brought them to the show room floor, accepted deliveries, helped load sold goods, the list goes on. It really felt like we were back in our garage sale days. Like clockwork, once we snapped a pic with the MCC fam, we got the call from George and it was time to move on.

From Calgary we headed back east to Strathmore for the next part of our journey.

Cheers, The Boys

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Jurassic Park IV: Rise of the Albertasaurus.

Our time in Alberta up until this point has been extremely enjoyable. Greeted by large farmers fields very representative of the Canadian west, it was almost too picturesque to drive past without actually taking the picture. When we arrived at the Albertan Border, we trekked through the field’s of wheat making sure that every step was with the grain, and made it to the top of the hill and snapped a few nice ones.
Later that night we made it into Medicine Hat in good time for a swim in a sludgy river. We then found a few gems at the local Value Village and rested at a Safeway for a nice spaghetti cookout. (Safeway is our new favourite grocery store. Each one has a gas station and now that we are members of the Safeway Points Club, we get $0.05 off each litre of fuel with the purchase of $35 in groceries. SCORE! Thanks employee of the month Katie! Wow that was an extremely long parenthesis description)Late that night we pulled into a random provincial park parking lot with no idea what we were in the midst of. However, early next morning with the break of dawn, we awoke to an astonishing landscape. We were in Dinosaur Provincial park. Our mothers would have been proud as we got up for the earliest guided hike. This place is actually surreal. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, There are Dinosaur bones by the thousands concentrated in an area. One can find them even just jutting out of the sandstone. HOW NEAT. After a great day of exploring, finding and touching reveal dino bones and pretending to be in Jurassic park, obviously, we had enough daylight to get to Calgary.

At this point of the trip, everything is going so splendidly, we're starting to think that nothing could ever go wrong...

Cheers,The Boys

Friday, July 29, 2011

Regina Monologue

Last Night was our one and only night in Saskatchewan. Two new friends Tosh and Siyee accompanied our arrival to the province. These boys are pretty close to our age and have spent time living all around the country with their next destination being B.C.. We took them from Winnipeg to Regina and were repaid with some rather interesting hitchhiking stories from their travels over the years. From encounters with some pretty crazy people including drug addicts, it's understandable why this way of travelling has gotten the bad rep that it has. However for our sake, it was quite nice to offer a ride to two young, non threatening adventurous travelers.

After we dismissed the boys to catch another ride, it was time to celebrate. It was Josh’s 20th Birthday and we all reaped the rewards. Dressing sharply, the five of us strut into Casino Regina (doing our best to pose as high rollers) and sat ourselves down to a superb steak dinner (a treat that we will definitely not be enjoying often). As we got to our second Walmart Campground of the trip, we played some cards, and set up shop. Then we went to sleep, ready for an ambitious early start in the morning...


7:00 am Alarm.

Hit Snooze.

More Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz’s

8:00 am Alarm.

Thought about waking up

Hit Snooze

More zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz’s

9:00 am Alarm

Talked about waking up…

Hit snooze

Even more zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


Woke up.

Once we finally did get up, we set up a nice little breakfast camp in the lot and greeted everybody walking past on his or her morning errands. With our microwave plugged into the generator, and a value size milk jug bought cheap, we enjoyed some cereal hot and cold, then hopped back on the road ready for another full day of driving.
Sorry dear prairies, Alberta and the mountains are more exciting. This blog needs some adventurous stories.

Cheers,The Boys

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Peg

Our stay in Winnipeg was anything but rough. Charles’ Aunt Elsie and Uncle Henry were our hosts and they live in a beautiful place just outside the city centre. We had more than enough space for our RV in the condo lot which also offered a great power hook up. We became accustomed to the visits to the apartment for the bountiful feasts that were prepared for us every meal. On Tuesday we had a tour of the city. We visited the tourist area called The Forks which is where the Assiniboine and Red River meet. We also saw the building site for the Canadian Human Rights Museum which is sure to be a fantastic place in a few years. A highlight of the day was when Jamie and Adam posed as nephews of an elite Winnipeg businessman meeting for seat selection at the new Winnipeg Jets arena. Operation Jetpack was in full swing and they were able to sneak past security and get a tasty view of the arena. The day was great but our night proved even better.
Every one knows the only way to cure the Tuesday blues: cheap night at the movies. So for once,it was easy for the five of us to come to a consensus on how we would spend the evening. Donning our Open Road Project t-shirts, we headed to the theatre with a plan. We then proceeded to meet, chat with, andbuy tickets for quite a few strangers. Like I said, it was cheap night, so the gesture was more random than kind in terms of a dollar value, but we all know the old saying, sometimes it’s the thought that counts. It proved to be a really cool experience and we were able to do this for over 20 people. We hope that the gesture was appreciated and passed along to others. The response we received was great, and an idea that we would consider a success. That’s all for now, today were driving to Regina for Willms birthday. More to come regarding that of course.


The Boys

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Bob and Steve

Bob was a simple man, he didn't talk much. When he did, he was a nice dude- giving us tips about his local neck of the woods.
Bob was our friend on HWY 17 (the Trans Can) between the town of Marathon and Thunder Bay. Meet Bob:
Get those thumbs up there Bob.

Bob, ill have you know, was THE original “Bob the Builder”. It may have been self-proclaimed. But hey, that still counts for something.
Now, Steven has a slightly more interesting connection to our crew. Yesterday, I thought I was going to be writing a post about my wallet falling in love with Thunder Bay and insisting on staying. This is of course, because on Friday night between 12:10 and 12:15 AM, my wallet (to no fault of my own) magically leaped from my pocket and was lost in the city. Hours of searching to no avail had us convinced that it officially the that time I was going to have to start building a new wallet. Just as I was finishing a morning of Canada Services and DMV visits, trips to the bank and phone calls with the cops. I got a phone call of my own.
“Hello, is this James Grantis?”
Now I was fairly excited because this mans voiced sounded nothing like that of my mom. My adulation was confirmed, as I was happy to hear it was just one honest dude on the other end of the line.
I met Steven at the Salvation Army just down the road. Greeted with a smile, I can understand his joy as a splash off extension of my own. We chatted and I thanked him. I made sure to get as much of a life story as I could, and let me tell you, it is a fascinating one. He’s got my number, and I’ve got his. Maybe we’ll be pen pals.
Meet Steven, signing our guest book:

The Boys

Monday, July 25, 2011


We have a couple new videos for you guys and we would love for you to check them out. They can be found on our YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/TheOpenRoadProject.

Garage Sale Video

Camp Crossroads Video

Cheers,The Boys

Thunder Bay: Superior by Nature

The first major stop of our trip was in T Bay. We stayed with one of Jamies moms best friends, and man, what a great family. Sharon, Gerald and their three children Elliot, Linnea and Dana were nothing short of amazing hosts. Considering the nature of our trip, we had asked Sharon to find us some things to do while staying there. Our first stop was their small Anglican Church where this wonderful woman, Deb, was already there to greet us. Her English accent was extremely welcoming and her and Sharon then proceeded to make us a fantastic spaghetti dinner. We ate and enjoyed fellowship with Sharon, Deb and the kids talking about what we do during the year. But when we woke up, it was time to work.
Before work, 5 young bucks have to eat a hearty breakfast and what better way to start off a morning than breakfast in bed? We all thought this was a great idea and Willms was gracious enough to get out of bed and head for the Tim Hortons Drive Thru. It was a spectacle for the drive through employees as I hung out the big side window, still shirtless and in my blankets ordering breakfast for 5. After buying the coffees for the 3 cars behind us and eating our bagels, we got to work.

The first task was to maintain the church grounds. Adam and Charles weeded gardens until their hands were black, Willms trimmed hedges until they were perfectly uniform, and I cut grass with a man-powered push mower. All the while Jamie dealth with a different situaution of his own. After we were done here, we went over to our new friend Deb’s place to do a few jobs that she has a hard time doing herself. We did a bunch more landscaping here, expanding a few of her gardens, cutting grass, clearing some of her pathways and doing a little carpentry. She was so thankful for our help and we too were thankful to have gotten to know her during our short time in Thunder Bay. We learned a lot from the hospitality and love that we were shown while staying with, essentially, complete strangers and now dear friends.

A few other highlights of our time in T Bay were the Bear/Moose hunt with Dana and Allie, coffee hour with the older ladies after church on Sunday morning and playing darts, basketball and badminton. Now it’s off to For Frances to visit a friend whom Josh Charles and I met in Israel. More to come!

Cheers,The Boys
Post by JE

Friday, July 22, 2011

And Now We Drive: Day 1 & 2

On Thursday morning, we departed from Camp Crossroads for the first official leg of our cross Canada journey. The 15 hour stretch from Muskoka to Thunder Bay would be the first real test to our RV, and the first indicator of what our new lives on the road were going to look like. We decided to set up camp in Sault St Marie. Where else better than a Wal-Mart parking lot? After we set up a pretty decent camp outside our RV in the back corner in the lot, we fired up the generator and played a little bit of hoop on the side of our RV (thanks to Charles for an amazing job installing the basketball net). Of course our lawn chairs and Coleman grill also marked our territory. Our first night together in the RV proved to be encouraging. Everyone slept great, and despite it’s claustrophobic appearance, it sleeps the five of us very comfortably. We were up at the crack of dawn Friday morning to finish the drive to Thunder Bay. Even in the early stages of the trip, there are a few things that we have learned about the Open Road.

First, honk at every other RV, truck and construction worker. There is only one rule to honking: you can never honk too much.

Second, while driving the backcountry of northern Ontario enjoy the beautiful scenery and if anything vaguely or potentially like a moose, it definitely was a moose. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise.

Third, Things will spill. Deal with it (Grandma Koops cushions already have a little Dawn dish soap, coffee and Gatorade to add character and aroma).

The fourth little thing we learned in the first few days of our road trip is that if you know the lyrics to a song, your going to sing along. I mean we didn’t hook our ride up with 1000watts of power, some nice new 6X9’s, new tweeters and a 10” woofer just to hum along.

Posing with any and all Canadian over sized attraction is a must.

That’s all for now,

Cheers,The Boys

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Reunited: Day Zero

Jer and I were finally reunited with out dear Princess (RV) and the boys. Seeing them cruise down the Crossroads main road meant a few things to us. First and foremost, relief that our baby made it past Grimsby (Take that Mr. B) Second, is that we now had a few extra hands for the day’s duties, and third and most importantly, it meant our trip is now officially afoot. You see, as an excuse to see our friends and grab a few amazing meals, we offered our capable hands for a few of the more laboring duties of camp. Reporting to Henry (head of maintenance), we explained to him the idea of our trip and why we were offering a day of work. He regaled us of his similar cross Canada adventures in ’73 across Canada with a few great buddies. Needless to say, he was in complete support of our trip and that seemed to be reason enough to assume that we were fully qualified for the days tasks. He the proceeded to hand Jer and I two STIHL Chainsaws and said if we have any problems, to figure them out ourselves.

We had a nice big job to do on our own time. Cutting trees like butter, and hauling logs is a good thing to do if your manhood is ever in question. (However this day is also the scene of Jamie’s Tractor incident. Not to be disclosed quite yet)

Our next duties involved the set up and christening of Camp Crossroads very first Blob. Dragging those anchors was a meager price to pay in comparison to the privilege of being amongst the first few to test out the unreal contraption that is a Blob. We were happy to be the guinea pigs so that all the children would remain safe for the duration of the summer.

Our day at camp also included, ping pong, delicious camp meals, foosball, swimming, & witnessing a legendary Zac Reimer Frisbee golf hole in one. But of course the fiesta-de-resistancé was our evening event far after all of the campers were asleep for the night. The Event: MANBALL. I wouldn’t even bother explaining this gargantuan game in detail because it would be impossible to do it any form of justice. Just know, it’s a game of three on three with full contact and is played in the tractor warehouse where every mans manly pride hangs in the balance. The footage must be witnessed and is soon to come.

This day was a fantastic day no matter how you crack it. Tomorrow… we drive.

Cheers,The Boys

Trailer Park Boys: T minus 1

This day was pretty fantastic. Too much neatness to describe independently, so here’s a pretty simple run down.

08:00 Breakfast at mini-yo-we

09:00 Climbed a legitimate rock face with a harness and belay

12:00 Found Hope’s trailer park

13:00 Met up with our dear friends Hope, Grace and Jewel

15:00 Saw a deerv 10 ft away. (tried to feed it, failed)

15:30 Canoed

16:00 Climbed a Cliff, jumped it.

18:00 Dinner in Huntsville

19:30 On route cottage, delayed by- and witnessed a dynamite construction explosion on HWY 169

21:00 Discovered Party Island, met some new friends at the Dwyers

22:00 Opened parting gift of new muscle shirt bestowed upon me by Kellermann to break-in

24:00 Midnight cereal bowl, heavenly snooze.

If you ask me, that is a pretty successful Muskoka day. It is not very often you can get so much neatness in one location. However, we are kinda missing the crew and are excited to be re-united tomorrow at Camp Crossroads.

Cheers,The Boys

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Muskoka: T minus 2

When Jamie and I woke up at our place in Waterloo Monday morning, we knew that it was time to get some more KM’s behind us. While our goal was Muskoka, we only made it to Missisauga before we made our first stop. Why? The answer is simple. Jamies Yaya and Papou live there. (Grandma and Grandpa in Greek obviously). When we got to their cozy abode off Dixie Road, we were greeted with whole fresh cucumbers directly from the garden as a warm up for the amazing lunch that was about to ensue. Before our arrival Yaya told Jamie she wouldn’t have much prepared. While I would be fine with whatever scraps of free food I could find, Jamie assured me that would not be the case. He wasn’t wrong. The smorg of a lunch consisted of deliciously seasoned souvlaki with a wonderful salad and amazing roasted potatoes. The hospitality was much appreciated! (Also don't think that we didn't leave without enough food to keep us going for the next 3 days)

Our drive up to Muskoka was a nice one. Our first stop was Camp Miniyowe and we were arriving unannounced. The people here are so friendly, so it was all fine and they even offered us a warm bed (well, couch) and a nice meal. Also, Jamie fit in perfectly. He was a little nervous especially when I told him I had forgotten to give notice to the director, but with an impromptu camp name, campers seemed to remember exactly who he was. “Oh ya! I remember you ! You were my counselor my first year at camp!.” It was quite comical. Also when Pirates invaded camp to steal the Honor Horn and wreak havok on Boys Camp, one scallywag in particular looked all too familiar… I have been excited for a summer away from camp, only because it would be free from waterfront alarms and missing campers, but I forgot that Monday was they day that staff always did the missing camper drill. I was happy to participate in the drill, however, when a camper actually went missing right when the practice alarm went off, my dreams of a stress free summer had been snatched away. (the camper was found sleeping in his cabin and in perfect health). Anyways Jamie and I ended up helping run a few activities in the early evening. Jamie ran ultimate Frisbee (he was in his element) and I ran kayaking (you may not know, but in my element, I have extensive training in the sport). Dinner was marvelous and after some catching up with old friends we went to bed right on time for the 23:00 staff lights out.
Post by JE

Waterloo: T minus 3

On Sunday, Jer and I said our final goodbyes to our homes in Niagara and officially left for the road. We didn't get far, arriving at our home in Waterloo only an hour and a half later. I must admit it is kind of nice to have two homes (well three when you consider where we will be living for the next 5 weeks). All in all, it was great to have a place to eat and sleep in Waterloo, after all we needed to be ready for the early morning pickup from Traces Screen Printing the following day. Check it out.

Pretty neat eh?

Cheers, The Boys

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Garage Sales: Putting the FUN back in Fundraiser.

If you haven't read our Garage Sale preview post from a week ago, here’s the 10 step run down on our fundraiser. (1) Any Blessing Pot would be better with more money. More money = More blessings for others. (2) We had an idea how to add money to the pot. (3) People in our culture have lots of “stuff” they no longer want or need. (4) We contacted those people. (5) We picked up and removed the donations from these peoples homes (here we found some top notch stuff) (6) We planned and advertised a garage sale. (7) We had a garage sale. (8) POWER HOUR. (9) We dropped of the remaining donations left over from the sale at Community Care (10) The Blessing Pot is now better off simple because it has more money. How much better you may ask? Keep reading.

Bright and early Saturday morning (we are talking 05:45 early) Adam and I climbed my roof and mounted a camera to record the days event at our garage sale. With a garage and basement full of donated items, the first customers were already milling around the end of my driveway to have first pickins’ as we hastily unpacked our boxes at 06:00 on the dot. (Good omen)

By 07:00 everything was unpacked, sorted by category onto different tables, and our sale was bumpin! With our fanny packs clipped tight and sun visors in place, it was time to sell some treasures.

Here is where we give a special mention to Josh WIillms and his amazing selling skills. This guy could sell you a bag of dirt and make you feel great about it. My favorite Willms line of the day was fed to a nice gentleman who was interested in buying this toy rocking horse. Josh places his hand firmly on the toy, leaned in close and said “…And you wanna know the best feature on this here horse? She doesn’t poop and ya don’t gotta feed it!” The horse sold right then and there.

We are super thankful for the incredible help from our friends Julia, Lindsay, Ryan, Mackenzie, Caleb, my brother Mike and of course Grandma Koop. Toss in some perfect weather, and a great location and you got yourself one heck of a G-Sale.

There must have seen at least 600 people through our yard between 07:00 and 14:00. The lawn was packed with happy bargain shoppers all day and we made tons of sales. However, around 14:30 we started to see a decline foot traffic and also a decline in the average quality of the treasures. This was when the savvy Garage salesman realized that everything had to go, or else he'd be left with a pile of crap.. erm "useful items" on tables in his driveway. And nobody likes being left with a pile of "useful items", tables or not.

So naturally, as an astute sales crew we initiated PowerHour© Everything in the yard was now a buck. That is right. 1. Buck. Charles must have sold two truck loads of stuff in the last hour. Adam said it best as he announced to a small crowd “We don’t want this stuff… But you do!” I sold a woman a wooden table for 1 dollar- Awesome transaction.

So if you haven’t caught the drift by now, the day was an astounding success. If I had to put a dollar value on the success of the day, I would say it was a one thousand five hundred dollar success of a day.

Sorry, I don’t know if you heard me. I said a ONE THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED DOLLAR day.


We are so thankful for everyone that donated items so that we could have more money to buy things for the folks in need that we meet along the way. The Blessing Pot is now quite a bit happier, and we are too. Muskoka, here we come!

Cheers, The Boys

p.s. Video to come. just waiting to be re-united with Adam and his iPhone footage. We'll hit you with the link when it's done.

written by: JG

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Tasty Quotes

The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others
-Mahatma Gandhi

Hobos Nest.

Sendy milk.

Cheers,The Boys

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Meet The Boys Part 5/5: Adam Epp

Well the last two have finally got to us with their little diddy's about themselves. Must have been lost in the mail. long awaited by some, indifferent to others, here they are:
ps. as far as charles' bio goes. I must admit, (and if you know him well you would agree) it's a very fitting bio for him. it just makes sense if you know charles, so I didn't even bother to argue.

ello friends. The name is Adam Epp. But people mostly call me Epp, Eppers, Eppiphone, Eppilepsy, Eppic, Eppileptic Shock, E-Town, E-money, E-digs, Epp-digity-dog, annnnndd pretty much any other word you can make with Epp. Full name is Adam William Henry Epp....the third. Jokes, one and only. If you say it with an British accent though, it sounds like royalty. Right?! Soo I just finished my first year of my BBA co-op at Brock U, and I’m STOKED to get away from this place for 5 weeks...no offense. ;)
I’m approx. 6’ (6’3 if you include the faux hawk) 185 lbs and LOVE sports! I’m kinda a natural athlete and love tryin new things! My main sports are hockey and soccer though. Been playin right out of the womb pretty much.
I’m a lover not a fighter, but I’ll fight for my love.
LOVE music, LOVE guitar! Fun Fact: I pretty much know the lyrics to every song that deserves to be known, and then some....I often wonder how much smarter I’d be if I could transfer that brain space into something more constructive. Oh well, Don’t Forget the Lyrics anyone?
LOVE vee’s (v-necks), literally the only t’s I wear. And LOVE short-shorts. Normal t’s are too constricting, can’t breathe. And these legs need to be shown off, lets be serious here.
But I owe all I am, and all that I have up to the Big Guy. He’s blessed us ALL with so much, and I can’t wait to give it back.
Open road baby!

Ps. I have a tendency to ride dirty.

Meet The Boys Part 4/5: Charles Neufeld

Hey, I'm Charles.

Video Series

Along with this blog, we will be doing steady video updates. If you are a YouTube user, we would love your views and subscriptions. Here is a little teaser.


Monday, July 11, 2011

The Premise

If you are stumbling across our blog for the first time, or have met us at some point on a journey, this post is for you! Please read about the premise of our trips in this post, so that all the stories and events to contained within this blog will make sense.

Where we typically stay:
Before we head out on a trip, we usually establish a few contacts (including family, friends, churches, etc.) that are interested in hosting us for a leg of the journey, or that can provide us with opportunities to serve.

Where were plan to go:
Due to the nature of our trips, we don't typically care for an itinerary or schedule. We plan to go where we feel we should go, stay where we find hospitality or people who need help. Duration is typically as long or short as we feel.

What we plan to do:
Put simply, help people. We all have been blessed, so when we get on the road, we try to give back a little. Initially we thought we would mostly be giving in terms of hard labour, but we soon realized that there are many ways to show generosity generosity on the road. Some of these ideas include:
• Construction projects
• Coffee for strangers
• Free beach BBQs
• Buying groceries for folks in need
• Buying supplies, and clothes for those in need
• Gardening
• Helping people move

To do some of these things, we have collected some cash for a "Blessing Pot" which is a staple on all of our trips. All of this money is used to fill the needs that we come across.

Contact us!
Please if you have any ideas or advice for us we would love to hear from you!  You can email us at experiencetheopenroad@gmail.com or jeremyjacobenns@gmail.com. We want to know how you have found us! Comments on this blog are always welcome.

Aim for service and success will follow.

Home is where you park it,

The Boys

The Project Officially Begins Here.

With less than a week left until our planned departure, we are really starting to ramp up our excitement, and effort levels as we prepare for this trip. For those of you familiar with our blog we now introduce the new trip design. As you will learn, this blog is now equally shared by the 5 of us. So Jer and I would like to thank you to all who have been checking us out over the past year, and encourage you to continue to do so as we make our way across canada.

For those of you who have just started reading or those we have met during our trip, Welcome for the first time and if your curious to read about our trip in its entirety, that began here. So if your wondering about all the junk prior to this post, because it doesn't appear to relate to what the trip is about, please note Jer and myself (Jamie) have been using this blog to document our school year at Wilfrid Laurier, Jer's aid trip to Bolivia, and all the in between. Check it out if you care to, but everything from this point on will relate to our trip The Open Road Project

Friday, July 8, 2011

PSA regarding our fundraiser.

This is just a little letter and poster that we've dished out to a few people we know. And seeing as we got this blog, and more than 2 people look at it, we figure why the whack not just toss er up here. Here's the rough hypertext translated version:

Garage Sale FUNraiser!

Who: The Open Road Project

Us: Jeremy Enns, Josh Willms, Adam Epp, Charles Neufeld and Jamie Grantis [from left to right]

When: Saturday, July 16th 7am – 3pm

Where: 5 Simpson Rd, near the Lake and Lakeshore intersection.

Why: To raise money for the blessing pot, supporting the Open Road Project. (Please see letter attached)

What YOU can do: Come out and show your support at the sale!!


Donate your pre-loved items that you no longer have room for in your life!

We would be more than happy to pick up and remove your donated items

at your convenience/ASAP and with much appreciation!

Once we have your items will either be sold at the garage sale or donated to the Benefit Shop and forever out of your life and out of your hair!


RE: Garage Sale Fundraiser

Dear family and dear friends,

As you may know, or at least will come to know by the time you have finished reading this letter; four close friends and myself have a bit of a creative plan for the summer. We have all had different experiences with missions in our lives, and we have decided it high time to take it into our capable hands and make a mission of our own. Plus, we love doing awesome things, so why not combine the two… right? Here is the low down. From mid July to the end of August we will be driving across Canada in a 1979 GMC Vanguard RV that we purchase and have been fixing up. We plan to stop in most major cities, with some random small towns along the way for a balanced experience. While the likelihood of this trip being void of fun is about as likely as this trip going by without a single technical or automotive glitch, we would like to emphasize that we intend to go on this road trip with purpose and by faith. As I mentioned earlier we have all had previous experience with missions and feel the spirit of volunteerism close to all of our heart. We have literally countless plans for creative ways to outreach/voulenteer/just do good to random people. We will be staying with contacts, and several organizations along the way. Of course we will offer ourselves to their needs or the needs of their church first and foremost. After all, I can’t imagine anyone that would be hard done to find a practical application for a few willing helping hands. However, it’s the creative stuff that we want to focus on for the sake of this letter. Often generosity can be instrumental in our zany plans for random acts of kindness, and for that reason we have created an idea of having a blessing pot. This will be a fund that we will all contribute to, and will be used 100% for the sole purpose of blessing or helping other. Now, you may be reading this and thinking to you self, Oh boy. Here it comes, this is the part of the letter where they are going to ask us for money… Actually quite the contrary. In the past we may have come to you our dear friends to be sponsors for instrumental events or trips in our lives. And for that we cannot thank you enough! But, now as adult men we are proud to have worked hard this summer to make this trip possible by our own means. But we would still like to offer a neat way we could use your support if you care to do so. Rather than asking for $$$, we are asking for you junk. Please, not your useless garbage, but rather your used items that you have stored up somewhere with no longer any use for. We would be more than happy to pick up at your convenience. (Likely in our RV + trailer) and donate it to a fundraising garage sale at 5 Simpson road on Saturday, July 16. The entire proceeds of the Garage sale will be added to our blessing pot and used in full to bless the people we meet on our adventure.

Please consider if you have any things that you do not need in your life. We are not huge fans of the “stuff” and “clutter” that is endorsed by our culture, and see this as a dually beneficial initiative even in our own lives before we leave. Also everything not sold with be donated to the Benefit Shop in Niagara-On-The-Lake and out of your houses, garages, rented spaces forever!

Thank you and God bless,

Jamie Grantis, Josh Willms, Adam Epp, Jeremy Enns, Charles Neufeld.

***please feel more than free to leave a comment if you have a response to this letter of any kind!

pps. the blessing pot is growing daily! Thanks to all in support.