From 28 June to 14 July 1999, the Senior Choir of the Manhattan Beach Community Church was on tour in Italy, Austria, Slovakia, and Germany. When I (Mark Looper) drove my natural-gas-powered van from Los Angeles to Maine and back in August 1998, I posted an online illustrated journal via hotel phones as I traveled Clean Across America And Back; George Jackson suggested that I do the same for our choir trip, and this website is the result. Daily illustrated journal pages appear on the list at the bottom of this page. For an overview of where went and what we did, our itinerary and our repertoire of songs are also on this site; journal pages are also linked to the corresponding date on the itinerary. (Final itinerary and travel arrangements by Ambassador Tours, 148 East Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo, MI USA, 616-349-7655.)
Unless otherwise noted, the "content" here is my doing, so blame me for bad grammar and fingers in the way of the lens! The first "note otherwise" is for the photo above, which was shot by Doug Carter just before the choir's Gala Tour Preview Concert on Saturday, 15 May 1999, in the MBCC sanctuary. Prints are available (at much higher resolution than I can afford to store on my measly 6 megabyte website!) from him at Doug Carter Photography, 1018 Tenth Street, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266.
We were also accompanied by quite a few kinfolk and friends of choir members; these "auxiliaries" at various times acted as porters, shepherds, guides, and photographers, and always as an enthusiastic core of the audience at our performances! (This photo missed at least a couple of our companions; there's another picture on the journal page for the first day of the tour.)
Then there were the folks from OAD Reizen, based at Holten in the Netherlands, who got us where we were going. In the photo below, from left to right, are Ans Nieman, our tour escort, and Robert Haafkes and Ronald van Doorn, our bus drivers. I've linked their e-mail addresses to their names above in case choir members want to digitize their photographs and send some of them to our new friends. (That's Neuschwanstein Castle in the background, which we visited on Tuesday, 13 July.)
I hope you, the members and friends of MBCC, enjoy accompanying us (retroactively) on our tour!
new 10 June 1999, updated 10 September 1999