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Old 12-18-2013, 04:51 PM   #183
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Lynn my membership package came in a box because it was too much for an envelope.

Maggie it's not that the cost of dues doesn't matter it's just not the main issue. If you go to an international rally you are talking several hundred dollars not counting the cost of getting there. At a local rally other than the cost of your camp site the rally cost is next to nothing. I wouldn't mind $65 dues if $40 or $50 went to your local unit. The idea of sending $65 to support the bureaucracy at the national is where I have a problem.
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Old 12-18-2013, 05:04 PM   #184
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Dan, we just see it a bit differently, and that's okay.

Lynn, I applaud your efforts, too. You are obviously very passionate about all this.

One of the things we heartily disliked about our unit were the preferences for sterile fairgrounds for rallies, so the kitchens could be used.

There were also Sunday am church services.

I'm leaving this thread, having made my responses and had my say.

Good luck, Lynn.


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Old 12-18-2013, 05:07 PM   #185
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Ah, I don't think the IBT was pushing that move to reexamine the MOHO thing.

Just like in any decent organization, regular members are able to put together motions. The IBT has no choice to treat those motions seriously, even if they really think that those motions stink to high heaven. Do you blame the IBT for that?

Keep in mind, too, that the majority of people on the IBT are your region presidents.

As far as current and to-be presidents are concerned, don't be surprised to learn that some of them may be motoring about in vintage Airstreams. That they tow, not drive.


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Lynn:

I must be living in a parallel universe. In my universe the IBT hasn't changed that much from the IBT of three to five years ago. In my universe the IBT again pushed for a vote on the motorhome issue this past June for the umpteenth time. I'm not sure that the attitude of quality over quantity has changed (as a past IP desired). I don't believe that physical age is the issue; it is mental age - thinking old and "this is how it has always been done". It's also a generational issue; until the WWII generation no longer holds the reigns of power - there will be little change.

Change is coming because as stated "catch a wave". Let's hope it is not a tsunami but a great surfing wave with duration.

I do agree that the IBT will change over time due to necessity. In my region (5) we have a President but no first or second vice president. This will require changes to get people to volunteer.

To improve anything you first need to know what's not working so it can be improved. Do we know what's not working to attract and retain members? I'm not sure that we know the answer.

Airstreaming for me is all about having fun with friends. Other than the local unit, the WBCCI doesn't provide much benefit. I must admit that the last several Blue Beret Magazines seem to be much better than any I have read since 2005. The articles were interesting; something other than advertising for the next International rally.

I've attended one International rally in 2009; my first and my last. I had fun with friends but not because we were at the International Rally.Twenty years ago when the rally was held in fairgrounds and fields, there was a need for early workers to setup the electric and water facilities. Today with full hookup sites there is no need for early workers earlier than one week. If the Escapees can do it in one week for 1,000 RVs then the WBCCI should be able to do it. However it has always been done that way and it will change at the speed of a glacier. It irks me to pay a high International fee to subsidize a large number of early workers who are not really needed. (It really doesn't irk me because I've decided not to attend the International rally so I don't subsidize it.) Also now with about only 350 attendees; almost all of the attendees are early workers. So they are subsidizing themselves as there are very few non early workers attending.

Now back to suggestions. Make the International Rally a fun rally; adding bingo is not my idea of fun. As an example, if it was held as part of the balloon festival in New Mexico I would be very interested in attending. (We do have plans in the future to attend the Airstream balloon festival in the future.) Your idea of having fun activities at rallies is a great one.

Providing discounts won't be a benefit for me as I already get them through other organizations as others have stated.

IMHO most Airstreamers own Airstreams to relax, rejuvenate, and have fun. Once the WBCCI becomes focused on providing these to its members, it will grow. When we come back from a WBCCI event we want to say "What a great time we had".

We camp with several Airstream friends and usually have a great time regardless of venue. We could camp in a parking lot together and we would have a great time because we have fun.

In the end, an organization is either growing or dying. It's direction is significantly impacted by its leadership. That is why corporations change CEO's to effect a successful turnaround.

You are on the right track trying to determine what will work. There is probably no single silver bullet. The WBCCI needs cultural change and that is very difficult and time consuming to do. It will take many small changes over a long period of time to achieve.

I applaud your efforts!
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Old 12-18-2013, 05:47 PM   #186
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One thing I've gotten a tiny bit involved with is seeking venues for larger rallies. As you'd kind of expect, I involved myself strictly in the local area, meaning pretty much the whole of the southwest, about a gazillion square miles in size. And it is a whole lot tougher than I'd imagined! I even contacted some of my old friends* from FMCA leadership, and they also don't have it easy. Apart from a very view facilities like Gillette and Farmington, there's just really nothing much out there, not even for our scaled-down, smaller International rallies.


Lynn

*Can you believe it? These folks made a reservation at our place some years back. It was only after being here that we discovered that we were in the Longhorn Band together back in the late 60s. Pretty radical times.



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Dan, we just see it a bit differently, and that's okay.

Lynn, I applaud your efforts, too. You are obviously very passionate about all this.

One of the things we heartily disliked about our unit were the preferences for sterile fairgrounds for rallies, so the kitchens could be used.

There were also Sunday am church services.

I'm leaving this thread, having made my responses and had my say.

Good luck, Lynn.


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Old 12-18-2013, 06:49 PM   #187
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I would say the word has not spread throughout the WBCCI, Lynn.

We dropped our membership 2 years ago. We had been formally sworn in as members, had to pledge allegiance to the WBCCI and this included all manner of agreements as to conduct. This was not a unit pledge or requirement, but the WBCCI.

We were sent a written copy of the handbook with rules and requirements, and were expected to follow them.

When were all of these requirements removed from the WBCCI?
I have been staying out of this thread since I've heard it all before and don't feel I have anything to add, but I hate to see misinformation (or maybe disinformation) like the above promulgated on Airforums.

I have been a member of WBCCI for ten years (two different units) and held unit offices up through president, and I have never seen anything like you described. What unit was that?

In any organization, one will occasionally come across rule-oriented individuals who will be happy to quote real and imagined rules to new members. (Or make up rules to suit any occasion.) Just one or two of these can drive away a lot of new members.

I would observe that many supposed WBCCI rules are simply ignored by most successful units--if in fact, the unit officers are even aware of them.
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Old 12-18-2013, 07:22 PM   #188
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This is a camping club, right? I think I've been a member for 6 years but I was never " formally " introduced. I never know I was responsible for handing out copy's of " the book ". My wife and I host a rally once a year, travel with our own kitchen and make meals typically 2 dinners and one breakfast. You don't want to eat, no ones knocking on your rig to remind you. More for everyone else. As far as dues, I think there worth it to get group rates at campgrounds and to meet some great SoCal people. We have 10 weekend rallies a year around San Diego county. Maybe it's the weather out here, but most, can't speak for all, have a great time at our rallies. Some ask, what's in it for me? I'm starting to think nothin is in for you. We don't need that attitude. You get out of the club what you put into it. Now smile and brighten someone's day. Enjoy
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Old 12-18-2013, 07:38 PM   #189
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Ops I'm sorry. I'm moving our club forward by trying to provide a fun experience and a relaxing atmosphere at the unit level rallies. Try us.
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Old 12-19-2013, 06:31 PM   #190
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Wellllll, duh. I started working through suggestions, moving specific suggestions into to a spreadsheet. Made it halfway through, tried to save, and the damned thing crashed. I think it'd be better to paste into a table in a word processor.

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Old 12-19-2013, 06:36 PM   #191
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You should have used an app. :0
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Old 12-19-2013, 07:09 PM   #192
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Actually, I should not have used a spreadsheet at all. I could tell after just a couple items that it was a poor decision, but stupidly decided to continue with the work. Live and learn.


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Old 12-20-2013, 05:33 AM   #193
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Actually the club was a carravan club and has morphed into a camping club. For the better I believe. There has to be a happy solution because one day I may own an AS again and will again enjoy my experiences with other members. Jim
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Old 12-20-2013, 07:36 AM   #194
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Caravan club...yes, but we still have to have activities for those of us still working with school aged children. If it is just a long caravan club, there won't be enough folks able to participate and support the organization no matter how small it is.

Someone above hit the nail on the head. The Unit level events need to be of a nature that you would want to attend just because of the location and activities. Being a WBCCI event and seeing friends from your unit would become a nice extra in addition to the event itself. That is what our unit is trying to do. Camping and paddling in the Okefenokee, tours of breweries, tours of stately historic homes and charming small towns with good food. Hiking in the state/national parks, potlucks if you wish to participate, or planned group meals (food is always good for then sitting around an getting to know each other)

These are the things which we hope will attract and keep members who are not yet able to spend the time on the long caravans. We also have members who are able to go on the caravans and we get to live vicariously through them until we are able to do it ourselves.

As to the international organization, I certainly feel it could be reduced. I would be quite happy to receive ALL communication/publications electronically only. What does the main office really do? I know they sell and distribute our red numbers, and can access our membership details if we have a question, but what else?

How short could the business meeting of the club be at the annual international rally if there wasn't and pomp (flag ceremony, etc) Just a straight forward meeting covering committee reports which could be submitted beforehand and a motion could be made to receive them without the reading of the report, discussion of any motions for changes to the club, vote, and adjourn? Unless there was something huge, I bet it could be done in a single morning. That would free up the rest of the time for fun with friends, exploring the area the rally is in, seminars for the various sub groups and vendors (if you have a big enough gathering vendors will wish to be there and it can be of value to those interested in new products)

Disclaimer: I have not as yet attended an international rally. My international comments are based on what I have read here on the forums and lengthy discussions with unit members who have attended multiple internationals.
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Old 12-20-2013, 08:30 AM   #195
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Ok, I think it's time to bring this thread to a close. We can start a new one to discuss and distill if we want, but my feeling is that we've pretty much covered the bases.

First and foremost, I want to thank every single one of you for your input! It has certainly helped. Well, I should say that it has certainly helped me to distill my own thoughts.

I've come up with a document in which I tried to organize things just a bit. In creating this document, I've left out a lot of commentary in the attempt to get to the meat of suggestions or at least closer to it. The comments are organized into categories, but, as one might expect, the categories often dovetail so that it's hard to decide where to put comments.

Finally, allow me to address one final concern: Is anybody from the WBCCI leadership listening? And the answer is simple: Yesssiirrreeeee!

Ok, I'll attach a PDF if it'll fit.


Lynn
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Old 12-20-2013, 08:34 AM   #196
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How many young Airstream owners are there? Does anyone know what age groups own what percent of Airstreams? It seems to me that young owners seem like more people than they are because they stand out. So, it would be a good idea to find out what age group to go after before you allocate resources to get them to join. I think Lynn has a lot of good ideas—and those ideas need to be matched up with age groups they appeal to and then see whether they are worth going after.

Third, young people tend to join virtual internet groups and keep in contact that way. This club (and many others, also declining in membership) has a hard time grasping that.

Gene
Not sure I agree with you there. We're a young family, and while our twenties are behind us we're still a far distance away from retirement.

We were concerned about the reception our three rambunctious young boys would receive, but we needn't have worried - everybody was incredibly welcoming during our first meet-up. It helped that most people had (mostly adult) children and grandchildren themselves of course.

During the weekend I've learned more about my trailer than in the year before that, mainly from people who just stopped and shared their knowledge - without being intrusive.

We had a great time and are looking forward to spring, when we'll be meeting up again.
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