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Old 12-20-2013, 11:08 AM   #197
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Lynn….great summation of the ideas posted here. I would suggest that you charge the WBCCI at least a thousand dollars for it as there is a tendency to put more value on ideas you pay for!
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Old 12-20-2013, 11:15 AM   #198
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Ha! If I were paid by the word, I'd be a millionaire; if paid by the cleverness of idea, I'd be a pauper. (Guess what: I'm closer to pauper than to millionaire.)

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LynnÖ.great summation of the ideas posted here. I would suggest that you charge the WBCCI at least a thousand dollars for it as there is a tendency to put more value on ideas you pay for!
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Old 12-21-2013, 03:27 AM   #199
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Holy crap Lynn. 16 pages? Wow, giving me lots to read and pass along to others who are interested in ideas. Good job. Im sure it food for thought while its printing as I type this. Thanks for your dedication. I only hope I can continue to help moving this forward. Marry Christmas!
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Old 12-21-2013, 07:41 AM   #200
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Yep, and that's just the semi-organized version. I think, once distilled, that it'll be a whole bunch shorter.

Allow me to give you one that I've distilled from all of this: In the club, we often speak of "fellowship" (friendship) and "fun." And, in my opinion, all too often we make a terrible mistake with these two pillars of our club: Because fellowship IS fun, it follows that fun involves just providing a physical location for fellowship. And that is one MAJOR mistake, and the big loser is fun and the failure to attract new members.

And that doesn't even include the third pillar of the club, adventure, which is completely nil if fun involves just providing a physical location for fellowship.


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Old 12-21-2013, 01:00 PM   #201
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International rally improvement idea's

Lynn, I knew what I was saying, what it will take is members stepping up to jobs and positions and then doing the job 2014 style. I found that it is better to take the bull by the horns then just shovel the s.......
The WBCCI needs progessive members to step up and take over at the International Rally level. Sign up to do a seminar on your travels, a hobby, budget camping, dutch oven cooking etc. If they can't figure out how to schedule all the seminars, step in and help them think outside the box, new idea's. I have realized most are very willing to change, those that are not, bug the heck out of them to change and get with the 21st century, be nice but kid them. My kids do this all the time to challenge me to learn more about the computer.
They need someone to run a dog park at the rally, make it a dog park people will rave about. They need a chairman for the fashion show, don't show fashions from the local Sears store, check out the Airstream fashions and the fun items our own units have done, give inspiration to clubs that want idea's.
Step up and do what you think is best for the club and if more of us do this instead of just trying to change the old guard it will work. This is what changed the Oregon unit from old and set in their ways to what it is today, a growing vibrant club. A young man of "45" stepped in to be president when none of the old guard wanted to and the unit was about to fold. His rallies were relaxed, he invited Airstreams owners from the forum to join us and the change happened. We did lose a couple of members because we had no church service and took the beers out of the paper bags but those long time member that stayed love our club more than ever and we hear it all the time how much fun our unit is, so step up and be part of the change.
This is just my little part of the change, I'm Chairman of the Information booth at International and I will have a suggestion box, website, and hopefully tex messages for program changes and weather advisory. We don't have 10 notebooks full of local business information, just a smart phone and iPad.
Remember, those in power are getting tired and if we volunteer one at a time they won't realize we have taken over until it is to late, but I really do think they will be happy, relieved and will sit down with us and have a drink. Just the Pollyanna in me.
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Old 12-21-2013, 04:50 PM   #202
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I bought my Airstream in 2009 and joined the WBCCI rather reluctantly the same year. After two years in the club, I did not renew. I think that my family is the demographic that the WBCCI wants to attract. I'm married with two kids ages 7 and 5. My wife and I are both in our mid-30s.

I started writing this and it was something much longer. I opted not to dwell on things done to get me to leave, but things that could be changed which would attract me back. In the end, although no longer a member, I would like to see things turn around. Iíd like to see membership numbers increasing and bringing Airstreamers together instead of driving them away.

My suggestions for improvement:
  1. Get GOOD roadside assistance as an option (additional $) with WBCCI membership. Good Sam roadside assistance is great. It is the only reason I am a Good Sam member...so that I can buy their roadside assistance. Every other aspect of the club I have never found a good use for. That means Iím paying roughly $100/yr for membership in a club and roadside assistance. WBCCI could have that money. This service (roadside assistance) combined with what the ECC committee has accomplished already would be enough to make me join WBCCI again.
  2. Speaking of the ECC committeeÖ The ECC committee should be receiving every last cent that can be given to them. Its projects and results are amazing. The courtesy parking locations and unit locations on interactive maps is second to none. The minutes posted at the ECC section of the WBCCI website indicate that funds are being approved for the ECC committee for good things. The online Blue Beret is a huge step in the right direction, despite the still un-engaging content for someone like me.
  3. The WBCCI needs to have a larger online presence. Airforums is a great place for this. All WBCCI members should be encouraged to have a forum dedicated to their unit for discussion of events, happenings, etc. Some might say that WBCCI needs to have their own forums, but that was tried and didn't work. There's no need to shy away from Airforums as a discussion forum. Private forums are available if need be. It's kinda like Google+ trying to overcome Facebook. It was a nice try, but just not really happening. You can't be 2nd to arrive on the scene with the same thing and expect everyone to jump over to you and abandon the first option if there's nothing wrong with the first. Airforums is here, established, and lots of Airstream owners visit it.
  4. Many units (in my area) lack an informative website (or don't have one at all). This needs to be corrected and each unit needs to have a designated webmaster or otherwise coordinator of online communication. If web-able people are not available within the unit, then members should seek an external coordinator (i.e. kid, grandkid, friend, or ask ECC for help). Of the 4 WBCCI units local to me, one's website is deleted/non-existent despite having a link from the national WBCCI site; another has a website, but pages are blank; another seems to be trying to use their webpage, but it is clear that it's not a strong point; and the fourth is a top-notch website.
  5. All WBCCI rallies from all units should be listed on the Airforums calendar. This is how many people know what's going on in the Airstreaming world. It's free and can only get greater exposure for rallies. Itís how I personally find and plan all Airstream rallies that I attend.
  6. Rallies (unit or national) need to be planned around something to do either on-site or in the area. A quick survey of the websites (if available and updated) of WBCCI units in my area shows that many rallies planned by the unit itself are neighboring-unit buddy rallies at fairgrounds. This is not something that Iím interested in going to. Rallies that attract me are those at especially notable campgrounds (i.e. on a lake, a river, have a pool, well kept sites, campfires allowed, bike riding, playground, hiking, etc.), have activities planned on-site or nearby, or that cause me to travel to new places. Going to the fairgrounds 50 miles from my house to sit in my lawn chair for 2 nights and 1 day isnít going to attract my family. That being said, that same rally if it offered a local festival at the same time or the organizers had planned a tour of wineries or had planned an on-site activity for everyone could be incredibly attractive.
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Old 12-21-2013, 06:51 PM   #203
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Well I have been following this thread for a bit and I guess I will chime in briefly. It sounds like the WBBCI is facing the same attrition issue as many other groups. Yes you need to reach out to a younger group. I'm on of the 40's group that has been discussed, with a family. Last year we visited the Fl rally at the State Fair Grounds, and was impressed with the numbers of AS. So here are some ideas to help attract me and my family.

1. Have Rallies at places where their is a play ground. If possible...

2. Provide an option so there is a "family section". Putting the families together will make it feel like there is more families and kids. Also, as some of you may have noticed over the years kids can be kids loud and wild at times. Some folks find this behavior annoying, some font. Some parents feel guilty, and have a hard time relaxing thinking they might be disturbing the peace. If there is a family section people staying in that area know to expect kid behaviors.

3. Rallies that include weekends, and weekend rates.

4. Caravans sound really cool, so have some that are a week or less, to fun places. For example, hitting 3 state parks on springs or beaches.

5. Have family activities at the rallies. Bicycle parade, pet dress up show, board game night, and these should/could be organized by the families.

6. Is there a "family" section in the WBBCI?


Just some ideas..

Just a side note Can-opener looks like a good example.
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Old 12-21-2013, 06:56 PM   #204
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I never thought of your #2 in such words, but you hit the nail on the head. We often feel that way. We're not there to force our kids on anyone and will quickly retreat if we feel we're being a nuisance. Having a "family welcome" zone at a large rally could be a huge attraction for families with young kids.
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Old 12-21-2013, 10:55 PM   #205
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wxbouy, great post!
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Old 12-22-2013, 01:18 PM   #206
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Wine stream you're totally correct that's exactly how I feel at times. The idea of the WB BC is to bring people with like ideas in like interest together, may the members are older and that's understandable because A lot of the events are weeklong people are working. To build a community of younger members sometimes it's helpful to put them together. You may only have five families had a rally if you got them divided up different sections and feels like there's no families there. If you put them altogether in one area with a little extra space for the kids run around and play it'll feel more like a subcommunities within the community Of airstreamers with families.

So you might've noticed certain people attend certain rallies due to location friends being there the weather etc. People expect to see the same people a rally after rally, and it should be the same with the family if you put them together the kids will expect to see the same kids in the next year, and the same with the parents.

As you might remember there's some conversations that really only parents have. to people who don't have kids they sound very odd, crazy, and amazingly boring. Also there's times when Talk to their children and sound like crazy person. I can't tell you how many times I said things like "wait no don't do that, stop, Pull your pants back up, don't take that out, no you can't pee there, where did you get that, do I smell poop?" It's nice to limit the witnesses to people who understand where you're coming from.

Airstreams are well loved and pricey hobbies. Children are not destructive by nature. But things tend to disintegrate in their hands and things tend to break around them. It's not uncommon for balls flying through the air, crayons running around, paints being used, and sticks being swung. All these things could problem with nice shiny trailers around. Staying in the family area you would know that risk existed, and Hopefully people will be more understanding if an accident happened. With that said, the parents are still responsible for the behavior of their children.

Children also have different exercise needs, food needs and sleep needs than an adult. Having a family section with additional space roped off for a play area would be very helpful. I think of the rally in Sarasota Florida large open Fairgrounds. If you had six families coming, roping off an area That would normally allow for 15 trailers, would be a large enough area for the kids to play and not be close to our precious silver beauties. Roping off the area would be helpful not to keep people out, but to give the children a boundary where they can't leave. This could really just simply be one rope about waist level, and it could be installed by the families.

Well just ideas thanks a bunch,

silverflames
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:56 AM   #207
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Having a dedicated family section would make us more likely to attend events. I agree with pretty much all of the above, a section where rambunctious behaviour is expected would make a lot of sense.

Strangely enough, that would also include quiet time from 9:00pm at the latest.
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Old 01-05-2014, 03:22 PM   #208
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As a new member of these forums soon to be a new AS owner, this thread has been very helpful! Thanks, Lynn, for the amazing amount of work it took to not only keep the thread from completing derailing, but also for typing up that document.

Lynn's assessment that RV clubs are in decline strikes me as pretty spot-on, although I'm extremely new to it. But from my experience, clubs in general are declining. We belong to a yacht club and have seen the struggle for new members increase. Sailing seems to be dwindling, and power-boating is expensive with the price of diesel. But I don't notice a big difference of the quantity of boats on the water over the past 20 years, just a drop in organized boating (club events, sailboat racing numbers are down, etc.).

So, as a newbie to AS, what am I looking for in a club? First, a bit about us so you know where I'm coming from:

We are still 15 years away from retiring, so our travels will be limited to long weekends and a 3-4 week trip in the summer. However, now that we've sold our sailboat, which used to be my summer home, I can easily see us driving the trailer to someplace I'd like to spend the rest of the summer, and my husband would fly back home and work for a month or so before returning and driving the AS home with me.

We have two kids, but both are 16 and winding down their time at home. We don't plan on having them with us very often at rallies/caravans, but they'll be around occasionally. We're looking at a 2014 27FB Flying Cloud, with the twin bed layout.

Activities that we like include: kayaking (well, this is what I like, not so much my husband, but I would LOVE to see more of this offered in a group kind of way), sailing (probably on our own for this), hiking (not too strenuous), biking, wine tasting, games like washers/cornhole, etc. We enjoy cooking and drinking and relaxing and talking, too.

Oh, and I was thinking that if you wanted to host seminars at the same time as activities, that would be easy for us - my husband would want to attend some seminars on maintenance or little tricks one can do to the AS to make the experience simpler and more enjoyable, and while he's doing that, I'd be kayaking, for example. Rather like business conferences...doing our own thing during the day, hooking up for drinks/dinner at night.

It sounds like my local WBCCI unit (4?) is active and I would most likely join for at least one year. We're not super social, and prefer a smaller group of people, but we're not shy, either.

Anyway, we should be buying our TV next week and having the trailer by April/May, so I hope to be on the road with you all by May!
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Old 01-05-2014, 04:01 PM   #209
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Diane, Unit 004 is, I think, the Four Corners Unit and is very good! (Of course, I would say that. The 4CU is the unit we belong to as well!)

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Old 01-05-2014, 05:44 PM   #210
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Thanks, Lynn! I already heard from Terry and am excited to get the 4CU brochure. Hope to see you this summer at an event!
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