words/photos: Audi Club Georgia
In August, fifty Audi Club Georgia members, friends, and families gathered at The Ridges resort in Hiawassee, Georgia for HelenBack 2021. The Chapter’s HelenBack event began some ten years ago with a group of chapter members meeting for the day in Helen, Georgia to drive some of the twisty North Georgia mountain roads together from Helen and back. Since them it has grown into a 2-day event with plenty of time for socializing and driving. Unfortunately, due to COVID concerns, we did not have the event in 2020.
Participants began arriving Friday afternoon at the beautiful resort on the banks of Lake Chatuge. Dinners were arranged for small groups at three nearby locations followed by socializing around the fire pit and attempting to roast marshmallows for smores. On Saturday morning, the cars departed in four groups to drive some of the fun North Georgia roads into North Carolina, with a lunch stop along the way. The drives traversed a 150-mile scenic route which included highways with broad, sweeping curves, and highways with tight, second-gear switchbacks. When the groups returned to the resort, the attendees were treated to a German beer tasting outdoors at the Lakeside Pavilion, followed by dinner and a raffle of Audi-branded merchandise.
Sunday morning greeted us with showers, and many left to return home early, but a small group remained for one more drive, this time to the town of Blue Ridge, Georgia for a delicious lunch at Harvest on Main, followed by a trip to Serenberry Vineyardsto enjoy some of North Georgia’s best wine. The best part of the weekend, however, was the opportunity to be together with our Audi Club friends, many of whom we had not been able to see since 2019.