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The Greenbrier to Host Fall 2020 Treffen


Story by Alan M. French. Photo by Kristen Crowley

The Porsche Club of America’s ninth Treffen North America will be hosted at the historic Greenbrier resort, deep in the Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia. This is the first ever PCA Zone 2 Treffen and our very own Potomac Region is excited to join the First Settlers and Shenandoah Regions in supporting the five day event, September 16-20th, 2020.

The German word “Treffen” is a verb that means, “To meet.” Porsche Treffens are organized by various Porsche groups around the globe each year.

For those unfamiliar with the PCA Treffen, they are prestigious, multiday events at premier locations in North America, open to members from all regions. PCA National organizes two per year; in Spring and Fall. You may have seen invitations for this year’s Spring Treffen at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs. Treffens are very popular and attract a wide diversity of Porsches and Porsche people.

When we dig into the history of the Treffen in North America, we find that similar events, known as PCA Escapes, started in 2005. We also see that the Potomac Region hosted “Escape to History” in Baltimore in 2007. The nationalization of the Escapes into Treffens happened in 2016, with PCA National doing the heavy lifting in organizing, planning and promoting the events we know today.

I was asked recently of the difference between Parades and Treffens. PCA Treffens are similar to the summer Porsche Parades in activities such as tours and social events. Both types of event are big deals for the destination towns and cities. The Parades however, include competitive events and seminars. Treffens are focused around non-competitive touring.

On Treffen coming to Zone 2, PCA Potomac President, Mia Walsh, said “I’m excited to be involved in fulfilling some of our club objectives by joining national and other regions in organizing and presenting this special event for members.” Mia attended the Treffen in Vermont last year and brings her experiences to the table for the planning and organizing of the 2020 Greenbrier event.

The planning and organizing is well underway. It started almost immediately after the last Treffen. A number of Potomac members went to the Vermont Treffen, like Michael Handelman whom many of you know for his years of service to the club, from Treasurer to DE Track Steward. Michael is a key member of the Potomac Treffen volunteer team. Michael says he is motivated by the opportunity to “drive some great roads through amazing scenery and eat outstanding food!”

The Greenbrier is an iconic National Historic Landmark with a rich and colorful history. It has welcomed guests from around the world since 1778. The natural mineral springs that drew the first guests over 240 years ago continue to attract visitors to the 11,000 acre luxury retreat today. While the guest list boasts 27 of the country’s 45 Presidents, royalty, celebrities and business leaders, this year it’s about to add some very distinguished guests with their automotive works of art.

A great vestige of the Cold War is the Greenbrier bunker, a facility built to house all 535 members of Congress in the event of a nuclear attack! I can vouch for the fascinating Bunker Tour should you find yourself in White Sulphur Springs, WV.

The Alleghenies are part of the Appalachian Mountain Range so hill climbs, twisty roads and stunning vistas come as standard. First Settlers, Shenandoah and Potomac are each running driving tours that will be available to Treffen guests. I’d love to share the amazing drives that are planned, the interesting destinations and the top class cuisine that will be experienced, but then I would need to deploy my Men-In-Black Neuralyzer pen. The drives are a closely held secret and only available to those who register for Treffen with a password that will look remarkably like your credit card details.

Glenn Havinoviski, our Potomac Drive & Dine Chair seems a natural choice to be leading the Potomac tour planning. Glenn has looked forward to this opportunity for a while, “Potomac has done trips to the western Virginia region for years now and this is a great opportunity to work with the other regions in the Zone to help put this event on.” Glenn points out that previous Treffens across the country have sold out quickly. For him, it’s all about the drives in his Porsche, and as he says, “This part of the country has some amazing drives.” Everyone I spoke to with previous Treffen experience talks about great food, fabulous resorts, amazing cars and wonderful people with fascinating stories of their cars and journeys they’ve taken around the globe. But everyone agrees, the Treffen drives are like the V10 in your Carrera GT: the powerhouse in a pulchritudinous package.

We had a great response to Mia’s call for volunteers last year, and I’m blessed to be on the Potomac Volunteer team. We are thankful to have a full set of great Leads, Mids and Sweepers to ensure our tours will be remembered by participants for a long time to come.

To participate in the Greenbrier Treffen, one must register on July 15th, at 3pm, EST. That’s when the starting pistol for the registration race is triggered for this much sought after event. If you’re interested, you should be aware that places sell out within minutes, not hours or days.

Participants won’t have to stay at the Greenbrier while participating in the Treffen, but one must register for the event. The PCA is negotiating deals with other hotels in the area, but all of the events and socials are based at the Greenbrier.

PCA national will announce the full program and pricing in due course. In addition to the notifications in your PCA eBrake News and the Potomac email blasts, you can visit the dedicated website at treffen.pca.org

Viel Glück meine Freunde!


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