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Old 08-30-2002, 07:50 PM   #43
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"Pjtaia, Did you get your fees back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! "

Not yet. I will make the call to Ohio next week and see if at least I can get next year free...

The "new" 1975 Overlander is due out of rehab in 10 days or so. We can't wait to go on the "Maiden Voyage" !!!
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Old 08-30-2002, 08:26 PM   #44
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Jim,
I believe that 99% of the WBCCI members that I have been around would be thrilled to have your 9 yr old son around. We're young too, I'm 52 and we started earlier than you (our baby is 31) but several people in our unit take their grandchildren to rallies. Yep, most everybody in our unit is older than us but they are pretty young at heart. They don't always have rallies at places where there are lots of things for children to do, but often they do. Our state rally last year was in the Smokies at Cherokee Indian Reservation at a KOA where in additon to the local siteseeing there was a large playground at the campground and a fishing lake. The Region 3 Rally was at Ocean Lakes in Myrtle Beach where there is also lots for everybody to do. In November our unit is going back to Myrtle Beach. If you join, contact a local group and go to a unit rally. If your not happy, try a different unit. There are lots and lots of local units. I don't like everybody in our neighborhood. I just avoid the people that I don't like.

One more thing and I'll shut up but I can't help but wonder if some of the membership problems have to do with the products Airstream sells. How many A/S do you see on the road? They can't be selling lots of trailers when you can buy 2 fifth wheels with 3 slides for what one 34 Airstream costs. Most of the young RVers are not as tallented as many people in this group that can buy an older unit and make it better than new. These other folks are buying Prowlers and Jaycos.Some of the older Airstreamers are passing away or not able to travel. There goes the membership. I don't have a fix for this, its just my thoughts.

Best regards,

Lee
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Old 08-30-2002, 10:05 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally posted by LeeC
Jim,
I believe that 99% of the WBCCI members that I have been around would be thrilled to have your 9 yr old son around. We're young too,
Lee
Lee, thanks for the positive upbeat post. I have been thinking that I should join for a least year, if things don't work out I can say I have been there and done that. I did join AARP and quit.

I agree with you about the cost of a new Airstream. Some of the 5th wheels are amazing. I guess that comes down to is it about Airstream or about RVing. I have seen only one instance in a year on the various boards of a person selling their Airstream to get SOB.
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Old 08-30-2002, 11:24 PM   #46
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Members at large

While on the subject.
The Nebraska unit has proposed an amendment to the Int'l constitution that reads...

"Members at large; This category of membership is limited to 1 year. Following this 1 year period the member will be required to become a regular member of a unit with all the rights & priviledges accorded to unit members."

That is to limit the member at large (MAL) catagory to one year rather than an indefinite time.

The Nebraska unit goes on to say...

"We feel allowing members to remain as MAL indefinitely weakens the strength of the units."

"We believe these people are non-productive and our club cannot operate unless we have unit officers & volunteers at all levels."

"Those of us who have given many volunteer hours at many levels are somewhat irritated that these MAL members do nothing to contribute to the overall health of the WBCCI. We further realize that any organization has some members who never contribute, but the MAL member can have a clear conscience about his unique status since Int'l rules sanction his status."

"Since we have 500 MAL, this system does not seem to be working very well."

FYI, MAL members pay $60/yr dues which totals $30,000 for WBCCI.
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Old 08-30-2002, 11:32 PM   #47
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Wow! Sorry I raised the subject again...
My point is just that WBCCI contacted me right away when I first contacted them for info. Ever since I brought up the free first year membership, I've tried numerous times to contact them and my messages never get answered. At 29 I certainly don't feel that I NEED a club to enjoy my AS, so I think the key for younger people is easy and cheap access to membership. Trust me, I'm not going to chase them just to join their organization.
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Old 08-30-2002, 11:59 PM   #48
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I think proposed the change in the MAL rules will never see the the light of day.

The MAL was and is the reason I am still a member. We did not own a trailer for 4 years and I continued to pay dues and wait for the day I would own one again. How is a member that has no rig supposed to attend a rally, or work to plan an event , or volunteer for rally host. Also if they did some research they would find that many of the MAL members are full timers. If they join a unit it will not help the unit in the manner that they state. It will help the units as they will collect the $10.00 in unit dues and not the main office. HMMMM????

Lastly, based on the wording it would say to me "if you are not going to contribute your time and attention to a local unit, we do not want you as a member of the club". This excludes most members under 65 as we are unable to take the time necessary away from our jobs to do some of the things necessary to volunteer for the leadership positions in the unit. That is why I think that the IBT would not allow something like this to be added to the bylaws.

Just my .02 cents worth.
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Old 08-31-2002, 11:16 AM   #49
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MAL

This issue was presented at our business meeting at our rally two weeks ago. Our membership voted against the Nebraska units request for this change. We feel that MAL's are a viable class of membership and quite honestly we have members in our unit who pay their dues annually but never take part in any activities. I would dare to say they are probably just like the MAL's that the Nebraska unit states are "non productive".

I say to each his own. Our unit attempts to contact the MAL's in our area to encourage them to join.

Jack
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Old 08-31-2002, 11:33 AM   #50
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We were contacted by two of the units in our area prior to joining a unit. The unit we joined was not one that contacted us, but we appreciated their letters of invitation.

I also think that MAL desigination works for those owners who want to be a member of the club but may not want to to be "part" of a local unit. I know when we first joined, trying to find out how to join was not easy. It used to be that new members had to be sponsored by an existing member to gain entry. Thankfully that is not the case any longer .
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Old 08-31-2002, 12:35 PM   #51
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I too am 53 with a 10 yr old. My experience with WBCCI is limited to the TOG park trip. It was awful for us, and we will never go back there.
The shame of it was, my two kids and our little charge for the weekend who was a 4 yr old , got a lot of "lip" from some of the folks at the park, and after enduring a bunch of that , we went on a hike in the woods, returned and ran into a unit president who gave me a lecture once again on having kids running thru the place. This from a guy who had a big motorcycle that he "ran thru the place". It was too much for us. I kept shaking my head.
note----
Not all the folks there were like that, but the overall feeling was not family oriented. I am not too far from being a senior citizen myself, and I respect their wants and needs. If the WBCCI unit is better in your area, I am glad for you. I was real excited about getting the numbers on my rig, and having a club experience. Just not in North Georgia I guess.
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Old 08-31-2002, 09:12 PM   #52
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Alan, a couple of folks on the Yahoo Airstream group had a bad experience at TOG. Not all Wally Members are like that, I promise.

And as far as doing away with the MAL, what a crock. Its never been mentioned in our group as far as I know. Not everybody wants to camp with a group. The Missus and I both work for the public and there are times that we go camping just to hide.
I would hope that the at large members would drop in on a unit, regional or international rally or two and decide that they want to participate but if not thats okay. They pay their dues the same as me.

Regards,
Lee
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Old 08-31-2002, 11:12 PM   #53
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I am a MAL and that is all I ever will be for now. My wife and i have been thinking about have an ENCAMPMENT some ware around OHIO and MICHIGAN
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Old 09-01-2002, 04:30 PM   #54
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maybe we will go that route and stay as a mal, and forget our unit affiliation for now.Makes some sense to me.
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Old 07-30-2003, 06:29 AM   #55
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I hate to dredge up an old issue, but I gotta ...

We're buying our first A/S, a vintage model. As part of our research, we've dropped in on the WBCCI International Rally, and participated in this Forum to connect with other A/S owners. That's been a really positive experience. The people have mostly been great and helpful.

But we've also gotten a fair amount of pressure to join WBCCI. In fact, to join the Vintage Airstream Club (which interests us), we are forced to joined WBCCI. It's not a big expense but it bugs me, and here's why:

-- all the reasons the WBCCI members have given me to join are entirely self-serving ("We need younger members," "Our membership is dropping," "We need officers," etc.) The only unique benefit of WBCCI membership that anyone can name is the ability to attend rallies.

-- we don't plan to attend rallies. They take too long (drive time plus activities). They are rarely close enough to where we live. We're working people, as most non-retirees are. We have a child. So 90% of our A/S traveling will be within 300 miles of home, and when we do have time in our schedule to hit the road, we'll arrange our own fun.

-- we like to be more active than the average WBCCI member. We like to bicycle the town paths, swim at the beach, scuba dive, snorkel, spend the afternoon at the children's museum, and grab snacks as we go. We don't spend much time shopping and hanging out at the breakfast table. I haven't seen too many rallies that sound like this.

The real potential benefits of WBCCI have been sadly neglected. For example, I am a member of AOPA, the pilots association. The #1 member benefit (among many great benefits) is the excellent monthly magazine. It's superb, filled with great articles, reviews, safety tips, destinations, commentary, and relevant updates of all types. People renew their memberships just for the magazine.

By comparison, I saw a copy of "Blue Beret" and was saddened by it. It's basically a directory of rallies. What a lost opportunity. (The VAC "Vintage Advantage" is considerably better.)

I'm also a current or past member of other specialty associations, such as Divers Alert Network. These associations offer me many relevant benefits: discounts on travel, rental cars and insurance; political representation; credit cards deals; fuel discounts; legal services plans; toll-free numbers I can call for advice and assistance; specialized medical services; destination guides; truly useful websites with forums, information, and assistance.

WBCCI has let most of those opportunities slip away. Online forums like this provide the networking I need. Other associations have taken my credit card and travel business. But there is still a need to speak to the under-served Airstream owners like myself, for whom rallies are not the goal. This may be difficult for some to appreciate (since many posters here are eager rally attendees) but for many of us there are other needs. WBCCI still has a chance to make itself relevant again, but it's going to have to try much harder and shake off the old 1950's Wally Byam view of Airstreaming first.

Thanks for providing the forum to say this.

-- Rich





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Quote:
At 29 I certainly don't feel that I NEED a club to enjoy my AS, so I think the key for younger people is easy and cheap access to membership.
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Old 07-30-2003, 07:04 AM   #56
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My wife and I are MAL and are 32 and 37 years old with 3 small kids and a huge dog. We have attended only one WBCCI Rally down in New Orleans for Mardi Gras (sans dog). We were the only ones there with kids but 99% of the folks there were so great and accepting. I would have prefered some more younger folks in general but we were there also on buisness so we did not do any of the activities except the Mardi Gras ball which was a hoot. A few of what younger folks (about two other couples) that were there took off and hit a few Parades which was a blast.
The organizers Calvin and Billy were amazingly accomodating.

The Concept of some family Rallies possibly at Disney etc. greatly interests us.

There were definitly those at the Rally that could have done with out the kids but we understood as Mardi Gras is more of an adult thing.

I agree with a post above that the Blue Beret is not very useful. The MAL status was the only way for us to join as we have zero time to devote to helping out a unit. They would be foolish to eleminate it. We had never been contacted by a local unit while in Pa. but have since moved to GA. so we will see.

Did I mention we are interested in the Family Disney Rally?
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