I've posted this on the WBCCI forums - but I must tell you I rarely go there because for the most part the WBCCI forums are pretty quiet, not many people reading or posting there. So, I'm posting the same suggestions here. BTW, more to come, just need to get some sleep now.
It was great to meet you at the 2006 International Rally. Hope I can assist you in improving the 2007 International with the following suggestions from me and others, no names or WBCCI numbers to protect the not so innocent:
Hold area socials - i.e. if you are in GR 1-3 meet at 4:00pm on such and such a day, under some type of shade (tent, whatever)bring a small something to share along with your drinks. This is a major ice breaker.
Assign volunteers to "work" areas. Folks who will make sure everyone knows what is going on, engage them in conversation, arrange area pot lucks or other events/adventures. BTW - these folks should NOT be the WBCCI police. NO worries about laundry outside of trailers, flags - within reason, I guess dirty underwear on a stick should be something they would want to speak to folks about but other than that let people express themselves.
Increase the number of vendors - I thought I'd be able to get all kinds of replacement parts, interior decorations (cushions, drapes, flooring, etc) at the 2006 International and found for the most part the vendors there were pretty lame (exceptions being Fantastic Fan and the Airstream Store).
Bring in a mix of entertainers - it seemed to me the entertainment was geared towards our older members at the 2006 rally. How about bringing in acts that would be of interest to the hip "vintage" folks and those of us who may not be hip but are not from the ballroom dancing era. Not every night, but at least one night provide entertainment that "younger" folks would be interested in.
More from unnamed sources:
1. Our Region Breakfast was by ticket only, and sold out first day, and we weren't told they printed a few more tickets. Net: 1/4 of Region XX unable to attend breakfast. Our Unit arranged a "Happy Hour" for 1 afternoon from 4 to 6PM. Given the scattered nature of locations, more would have been better.
2. First Timer Seminar a waste, as we knew how to use a CB radio and what a caravan was, and much of dialogue wasted on tank dumping schedules..
3. I agree with others that calendar meant event too long and poorly timed around weekend. The 250+ volunteers arrived two weeks early, and were tired and ready to leave by Saturday, which was tough on people planning to arrive Thursday or Friday, as event essentially concluded Saturday night.
4. ALL the organized side trips seemed to be scheduled ahead of the event, apparently intended for the volunteers, band members, teen queen families, etc, rather than actual attendees.
5. Why not do pancake breakfasts and dinners for the attendees during the Rally, instead of just every day for two weeks ahead of it? HOw about setting up tables by Region or Units and letting people buy meals at the site? (instead of wandering off looking for Elk's Lodge or Olive Garden or ??)
6. Why not repeat some of the interesting seminars, instead of presenting once only in conflict with other interesting seminars.
7. Why not have newspapers in the machines in the mornings, and a Coffee/Espresso Cart selling coffee to those up and wandering around grounds by 6 or 7AM.. Nothing opened for food or beverages until after 9AM...
8. The Welcoming center and hospitality area was mostly empty, though someone went to trouble to decorate the tables. Why not have coffee available there in mornings, and beer or soda's (gasp..) in afternoon and evenings.
9. I'm one who feels Teen Queen, Closing Ceremony and Pageant of Next Year are probably ready to be ended. Try adding Hot Air Ballooning, Bike Tour of Salem Downtown, and Lunch on Riverboat...