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Rollin With Roger – Leg 1


Drive Safe, Roger!

Rollin With Roger is officially on the road again and making plenty of stops to local grow stores on his way to Key West, Florida!
Check out social media pages for stop updates and any other information regarding the Rollin With Roger road trip.

Mon. June 17th: Roger will be rolling into Cool Digs in Athens, Ohio for the first stop of the road trip!

Tue. June 19th: Busier day with TWO different stops, first being Bender Farms in Pounding Mill, Virginia in the morning with HTG Hydro following up in Roanoke, Virginia in the late afternoon.

Wed. June 19th: Following the busy day in Virginia, Roger will be stopping in Augusta, Georgia! Head over to Garden City Hydroponics to meet Roger during his stop.

Thur. June 20th: Catch Roger rolling around Jacksonville, Florida with no specific destination in mind! Good Luck.

Fri. June 21st: Welcome Roger to Grow Giant in Orlando, Florida! This afternoon stop is the perfect time to meet the Seed Cellar man himself.

Sat. June 22nd: Scooting through his road trip, his last official Leg 1 grow store stop is Hydroponics & Indoor/Outdoor Garden of The Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Florida. Grab a cup of coffee and head on out!

Sun. June 23rd: Find Roger moseying around Key West, Florida before he takes off the next leg of the Rollin With Roger journey!

A Quick Recap of my Week on the Road

Day One:

I left Monday am from Delaware OH headed toward Cool Digs in Athens OH for my first visit. Before going to Cool Digs I took a break on the University of OH campus to rehydrate and cool down as the temp was hitting the mid 90s. The people at Cool Digs were friendly and accommodating. Their shop wasn’t all that large but it clean and well organized. Staff is very knowledgeable. Based on what I observed they kept close tabs on the inventory to make sure they had everything that a garden/hydro grower would need, shelves were faced and full. They also had a large selection of gem stones and cool rocks.
They told me about a festival in the Hocking Hills coming up July 26-28. It’s called “Stargazer Cannabis Festival”. Music, Camping, Farmers Market, Drum Circle, Spring-Fed Pond (I’m sure that’ll cool you off) Sacred Sites, Hot Showers, WIFI, Nature Trails, Scavenger Hunt and of course Stunning Sky View. Sounds like a great time.

Day Two:

After leaving Cool Digs I traveled through West Virginia on my way to Bender Farms in Pounding Mill VA. The temp in WVA hit the 100 degree mark and it really sapped the energy out of me. I think was getting heat exhaustion before I reached my hotel. The next day I traveled to meet with Paul at Bender Farms to learn that the county came in with a search warrant and took all his inventory including his seeds the week before! He said they were just harassing him and he has an attorney to fight them. Good luck Paul, we’ll support you how we can.

After leaving Bender Farms I traveled to HTG Hydro in Roanoke VA. HTG in Roanoke is part of HTG headquarters in Pennsylvania. The staff was, again, very knowledgeable and took great pride in helping their customers be successful. The store was large, well lit and organized with a nice steady flow of customers many they knew by name. We had a great conversation and they will put our beans in their store as long as corporate allows. They don’t expect any issues with this arrangement. After traveling on main roads and hot sun I decided to take a break from that as the Blue Ridge Parkway entrance was only 2.5 miles from HTG’s store.

Day Three:

For those that have never been on the Parkway I highly recommend going and spend a couple of days on it. Elevation can be over a mile and it is very scenic; at least for passengers as the road is very winding with lots of deer and critters to watch out for. The air was cool and refreshing after the highway travel and when it was time to find a place to call it a night. I took a road that I thought would take me off the mountain- wrong! After traveling miles the road ended at a private gated compound where I’m sure some big money deals are struck. Made me wonder if Clarence Thomas had ever visited. The Appalachian mountains are not a good place to get lost in when its starting to get dark, but it was an adventure and isn’t that what life is all about?

Wednesday I had to get to Garden City Hydro in Augusta, Georgia; just south of the VA state line. I met with Kevin and one of his customers and had a great conversation about Georgia not being a cannabis friendly state. But Kevin was more then willing to discuss, unlike some other grow stores in North and South Carolina. If I remember correctly, Kevin said he’s been there for about a decade, moving down from Ohio thinking Georgia would legalize first. He maintains a nice little shop, a strong customer base, and is excited about carrying our beans! Our friend is appreciative of having us reach out to him in person, as we are of him for letting our visit happen. From there I made my way to Savannah and called it a day.

Pit Stop:

Savannah is one of those towns that is definitely worth a visit. The history, architecture and southern food and hospitality makes it a stop to remember. And of course I found a locally owned restaurant and had their shrimp special! The shrimp are locally sourced, fresh off the shrimp boats- nothing like fresh seafood! From there I set my sites on Jacksonville. I set my GPS to avoid Highways and tolls and what would otherwise be a 2.5 hour drive, was about 4.5 hours through the back roads of GA and Northern FL. That’s the thing I love about MC tripping; Avoiding the interstates and getting to see the real America with small towns with locally owned businesses. It saddens me to see how many businesses are gone with buildings rotting away after being closed up, lost to corporate America. Lots of dollar stores killing the local rural economies.

Day 5:

I’ll be in the Jacksonville area until Monday Morning when I make my way to Orlando and Melbourne. Tuesday I’ll be in West Palm Beach, Pompano, and hoping to camp Tuesday night at John Pennekamp in Key Largo. Then onto Key West and camping at Boyd’s campground from there.

Check back at the blog posts for more updates on the second leg of Rollin With Roger!