View Poll Results: What would Wally do with a "Rally Crasher"?
a) turn the non-rally participants away from all rally activities (risk being viewed as unfriendly) 1 1.82%
b) turn the non-rally participants away from all expensed activities (requiring a rally sheriff "bad guy") 16 29.09%
c) charge all rally attendees "extra" to accomodate the rally-crasher (not fair!) 0 0%
d) sell rally tickets onsite with an additonal surcharge (some risk involved) 28 50.91%
e) don't tell "the public" where the rally is going to be (not practical) 0 0%
f) other, please explain in post 12 21.82%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 55. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-06-2006, 10:26 PM   #15
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Sheri---Then do I understand that this is how YOU feel and has nothing to do with the Denver Unit?? If so I apologize to them. However I stand by MY opinion.---Pieman

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Old 08-06-2006, 10:30 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Mike Lewis
Sheri---Then do I understand that this is how YOU feel and has nothing to do with the Denver Unit?? If so I apologize to them. However I stand by MY opinion.---Pieman
No...YOU couldn't be more WRONG Mike!!! I am "the more the merrier one"...some other planning committee members hold the other "cut them off at the knees" opinions. That's why I'm asking what forum members I the only one that's accomodating???

You and I have obviously never met, or you wouldn't have assumed what you posted.


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Old 08-06-2006, 10:40 PM   #17
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That maybe was too harsh but has merit if you are not recruiting. This isn't the Hells Angels, it a bunch of folks that own Airstreams and ther're are bad apples within. You have to reach out while you reach within. Figure 20 % instead of 10 if you feel the vibe. If you promote a rally, why would you not hope others would come out of interest assuming they are interested in joining. If they are rally bashers, ask them to say so and charge them to eat, maybe they will join. It you are trying to break even with the food, make it more restrictive. If it is a closed rally to "current" members only", then you have to say so and wear name tags. How else can it be answered.
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Old 08-06-2006, 10:49 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by InsideOut
No...YOU couldn't be more WRONG Mike!!! I am "the more the merrier one"...some other planning committee members hold the other "cut them off at the knees" opinions. That's why I'm asking what forum members I the only one that's accomodating???

You and I have obviously never met, or you wouldn't have assumed what you posted.

Shari--my assumption is based on 2 things---You wrote it ----you signed it!!
No where did you say you were writing on behalf of anyone else.--Pieman
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Old 08-06-2006, 10:59 PM   #19
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I voted "D" on your poll. It's a no brainer Shari.
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Old 08-06-2006, 11:11 PM   #20
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My fly fishing club has an outing every month and we don't have any problems like that. We have a pot luck on Saturday afternoon and everyone brings a meal. We always have alot left over. We always have great food and no one is left hungry. If we see a park ranger or a campground host, we invite them to join in. As a matter of fact, my wife and I are hosting a crayfish catching outing this next weekend. Dem sum goooood eats!
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Old 08-06-2006, 11:29 PM   #21
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I have planned rallies and had crashers and can sympathize. A catered event is a different kind of critter. Caterers charge by the plate and bring a fixed number of servings - crashing is not cool. Sort of like helping yourself to the gas nozzle after the guy in front of you has finished but before they paid....

We had a fall rally last year and 20 trailers signed up.. Cool - except that 27 showed up. Instead of 40 folks eating we have 64 - big difference. Interestingly - the extra attendees were not very involved in the pre rally arrangements - and didn't understand (or care ) that it was a planned pot luck - most didn't bring a dish - just their plates and forks. There is a difference between a formal rally and an impromptu get together....

So - while I'm on a rant - here's my list of rally etiquette peeves:
  • Pot lucks - a 3 oz package of m&m's is not a dessert dish, bring real food (or a BIG bag) - or ask ahead whats needed. Good pot lucks don't happen by accident.
  • Wine - I happily share and you are welcome to some of mine - BUT... Bring a bottle for the table and if you drink my good merlot - don't leave a bottle of Ripple!
  • Extra vehicles - most campgrounds charge for extra parking - don't expect the rally host to pay for yours!
  • If the rally is a do-it-yourself rally, pitch in. Help with the cooking or cleaning or entertain some ones kids so they can. Pick up your own trash.
  • Bring firewood to contribute.
  • Plan the next event! I like to relax too. I figure about one in twelve rallies is a good ratio....
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Old 08-06-2006, 11:42 PM   #22
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A few years ago we went to a July 4th "picnic on the (estate size) lawn" and fireworks event at an old mansion turned B&B built riverside. Anyway, guests made reservations by paying in advance and admission/meal tickets were mailed to you. At the food serving tent you gave your ticket to a staff person and were given your plate and proceeded through the serving line.

A caterer needs to know, of course, how many persons to plan on in advance of your rally dinner and may not be able to accomodate extras, or at least very many, at the last moment. What is the caterer's policy on unexpected guests bringing their own meal? (Special dietary needs excepted)

IMHO, if people have not registered for the rally, they are technically campers like anyone else at that park whether by coincidene or planned. That would/should/might include handouts/giftbags, etc. as well as a pre-planned CATERED event. (Oh, we're so sorry. If we had only known you were going to be here!!)

I recall there being a couple of Airstreamers coming to a Midwest Rally one year who truly hadn't realized it would be good to let their intentions of coming be known.
They missed out on something(s) everyone registered got - I think a really nice personalized rally sign. Because our group meal was a potluck, there wasn't the problem of a caterer's count .
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Old 08-07-2006, 12:13 AM   #23
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What to do...

There are several excellent suggestions in this thread!
  • Charge for the food... if it is catered. If it is a potluck, ask folks to bring something or donate $5 (or whatever amount is appropriate)
  • If the event is catered, give tickets to those who have paid and announce to ticket holders that "food is served" and collect the tickets as they bring their plates by. Others can either buy tickets or simply bring their own dinner and join in at a spot at the table.
  • Use for recruitment... good idea!
  • I think it is most important to make folks feel welcome. It is the comraderie and positive feelings of sharing information and stories about Airstreams that the community is all about. You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar my Mom always said.
I have been to rallies/events where I knew the organizer didn't meet the financial needs because folks didn't show up or flaked out for some reason. I was happy to pitch in a few extra dollars to make it come out right. I had a great time and good company was well worth it to me! Just spread the word a little extra would be appreciated from willing folks... they will probably come through!

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Old 08-07-2006, 07:00 AM   #24
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This thread really speaks for the rally with no meetings, no catered meals, no bakery cakes, no expenses, just friends getting together having a good time at an agreed on time and place.
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:26 AM   #25
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We've had the good fortune to attend several rallies in which Shari has played a key role in organizing, and I think it's important to understand the type of rally of which she is speaking. Having planned both small Airstream rallies and work-related national conferences myself, I have a real appreciation for what goes into the type of rally of which she is speaking.

The kind of rally to which she is referring is often held at a very nice privately-owned campground at which a block of sites must be reserved months in advance (just like hotel rooms for a conference). Penalties arise for cancellations, and that's a risk the rally planners often take on. Caterers must be arranged for, and they have to have absolutely accurate numbers at least two weeks out if not more in rural areas - again, another financial risk. Her rallies feature packed goody bags, personalized trailer signs, extensive information with directions and maps made available far in advance, custom-made souvenirs, and careful parking maps based on trailer length and length of stay. I don't think those taking nasty shots on this thread understand the resources - time and financial - invested by volunteer rally hosts to pull off these national-level rallies.

I think the very, very least we can do as guests at these rallies is register before the deadlines. These hosts are volunteering their time outside their jobs, often use their own credit cards and checks for campground, food, and souvenir deposits, and spend their own money and time in making trips to inspect campgrounds and meet with service providers.

As a host for national-level conferences, our policy has been to have a registration deadline and a substantial penalty added for late registrants. Those registrants have to make their own lodging reservations. At times, we have simply had to tell people "no" if there wouldn't be enough food. It's not fair to those who paid in advance to not have food at functions because of those who came late or unannounced. I think it's certainly not unreasonable to do the same at rallies.
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Old 08-07-2006, 07:48 AM   #26
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I believe that we should welcome rally crashers, at least the first time, and explain the costs for the planned events. If they are unwilling to pay their share, they should not be allowed to participate in the parts of the rally that cost, such as a catered dinner, or tour with admission.

If the rally is like most forums rallies, the only cost is the camping fee, which they would have to pay.

If they show up and they don't have something for the pot luck, help them out by sharing from your larder so they can at least bring something. Normally, there is plenty of food at a pot luck, so a couple of more people won't be a problem.
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Old 08-07-2006, 08:21 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by InsideOut
I have observed one rally-hopper in particular repeatedly show up to club rallies, ALWAYS un-registered, not a club member, always really, really hungry when it comes to potlucks and meals (to a point of taking filled plates back to their trailer for tomorrow), and yet never seems to contribute anything. They know exactly what they are doing.

How would you handle that?

Chop them off at their knees.

As many agree - there are those who are happening by - and most can tell those type of sincere and honest people!!!!

And then there are those - who are the "users" in all walks of life. See a good thing and have no concience and go about their whole lives like that!

If you were abrupt with them or said get lost - it would not phase them as they take their chance at each opportunity.

It does not just happen at Rallys either. I remember being at a check in desk - and happened to overhear a conversation - "no we don't want to pay $19.00 for full hook ups - we are just stopping in to park and leave first thing in the morning. They were given a number - the next site to ours. They paid nadda - and what was the first thing they did - hook up to water and then hook up their sewer hose. The sad thing about this situation - is that I never said anything to them or to the owners!!! That is what is sad about our society - we the rule goers just will not rock the boat - and yet if we ever find ourselves in a situation - I bet their would be people out their that "do the barking" pretty quick.....The other sad thing - we were embarrased to see that it was a fellow "Countryman"!!!

Another known fact is if these type of people are confronted - they usually back down pretty quick - and if they don't you know that as soon as one person confronts them the rest of your group will be with you in a flash.

It is not fair that one or two should ruin it for many.

So the big answer to your question Shari - is we either live with it - or we do something about it - there is no in between.

Always keeping in mind - the inocent as they truly will be very apologetic and offer up the funds or bring their own meal or wait for the tour to be over so they can join in the socializing....

I still voted D - as the fees should be paid like all others - if they don't then they are not in for the long ride. In cases where pre-head count determined the catered dinner then explain this to the person to bring their own food (or have a back up to run out and pick up the main course) or refund the protion of the Rally fee that relates to the pre-catered portion. Same with the tours if there are not enough tickets or spots then explain that the rally is a first come first serve - or pre-registered.

But for those who are just pulling the chains to begin with sell them a one way ticket back to their trailer.
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Old 08-07-2006, 09:12 AM   #28
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Ben------Now I'm really confused!! If I happen onto a group of Airstreamers in a campground how do I know I'm welcome or not? How do I know if this a Member Only Unit Function, or just a group out camping and anyone is welcome? If I'm invited to come join in how do I know it's an official invitation or just a friendly person asking me over? Do I dare introduce myself and end up being tagged a "Rally Crasher" or should I just stay away. I can assure you this Exclusive attitude does little to promote new membership. Perhaps thats what you want anyway, at least it apears that way. I find it interesting that that someone would start a thread complaining of a perceived problem, asking for advice, then become offended when someone expresses theirs, only to backpeddle by saying it's not them complaining, as they are "the more the merrier one". Back to Sheri's original question, "any advice?" I stand by my original response. If your group does not want anyone except those who have pre registered, if walk in's are not welcome, if this is as exclusive as described, then you need to post the event as such. "Private Rally"-"Pre Registered Guest only"-"No Admittance"

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