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Old 09-29-2005, 11:11 AM   #15
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All good comments

All good thoughts to read.... We have been in WBCCI for 10 years and I was just turning 40 at that time. We were the kids in a Unit with an average age of members being about 70. Our son, Jeep, was 12. We didn't make every rally, but, managed about half of the ones offered every year, then went to international and headed south for a week or two in February. Initially we bought the AS and called it the "escape vehicle", because my office is attached to the house and the only way to escape work and clients was to head out for the weekends. We were able to escape the rat race, spend time outdoors together and slow down. No real tv, no real telephone, etc.

(We do travel with tv, cell phone and laptop/printer. With the idea that I could work if I had too. It never seemed to happen though...once out of town for a couple hours my stress level dropped instantly.)

We had gotten through our 30's with a pop-up and had owned a home since we were in our early 20's, so our money was in our real estate and our time was in our professions, childs school, after school activities and sports. Now at the age of 50, we make most every rally and truly value every moment we can be away relaxing, hiking, touring, kayaking ...or whatever. Maybe everyone is truly too busy in their 20's and 30's to make a major commitment to a club like WBCCI, but participating in one or two rallies a year can be the hook and pave the way for when 50 hits you head on and you have more time and money.

Jeep is in his 20's, getting the business off the ground and tries to make a rally or two a year. Not too much time is available for rallies at this point. He is restoring the Tradewind and finds the club and the forum a vast resource for information and helpful hints. So, I think there might be other people his age, who can afford a vintage trailer and may tackle a restoration, as opposed to having the funds to purchase a brand new AS.

Now I am rambling toooo....

At any rate, I don't have any answers yet, and am just thinking out loud. I for one enjoy our New England Unit of WBCCI, as it has a truly great mix of ages, backgrounds, experiences and professions within the membership, so that we are never bored. The club would not work nearly as well if we were all the same age and background.

So, I encourage all ages to join in and attend when you can.

Keep posting your thoughts on attracting this age group. I am enjoying the reading.
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Old 09-29-2005, 12:04 PM   #16
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I don't qualify in this age group either - but as a boomer I still feel like a kid at WBCCI events I've attended. I guess age is a relative thing.

If there's concept that has been reinforced by the people I've met it's that interesting folks of any age are fun to hang around with. The common threads in this community seem to be a love for adventure and inherent wanderlust.

I haven't met a single "streamer, of any age, that is just along for the ride; they are all fully engaged, living in the world rather than on it.
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Old 09-29-2005, 12:48 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefrobrts
Then at dinner one night we made a Simpson's joke, and it was clearly lost on the people around us. Normally we communicate with friends our age via Simpsons jokes
Oh man, Stef, you gotta get back East for a rally with us. I think Doug (my Doug, the other half of dougjamie -- doh!) is the king of Simpsons humor/trivia. He's started my 7y.o. on it already. Help! -J
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Old 09-29-2005, 01:19 PM   #18
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Great thread so far...Thank you to all for your thoughts and ideas.

Spending more time thinking about our life...

We have a vintage trailer. It is in pretty good shape, but will always have something to fix. Many younger 'streamers will start in this price range to see if they can allocate enough time to the lifestyle.

I think one opportunity might well lie in "working on trailer improvement rallies" that have happy hours and unstructured campfire social evenings. These could be single or double night events. Who can pass up the opportunity to have someone with AS knowledge help fix something on your trailer. Who can pass up free labor? I'd love to learn about polishing from Brad, even if it wasn't on my own trailer. For those who don't know, I hear Brad has a beautifully polished trailer.

These rallys (or "informational / recruiting opportunities") could employ many of the learnings we have right here in this forum. The challenge is to find a way to also invite those folks not in WBCCI, or this forum. (Marketing & Sales function).

OK, so the idea has only talked about vintage or the secondary sales market so far. Let's turn to the new trailers buyers. I'm not sure what to do here. I don't have any data on the volume of new trailers being sold in any given region. WBCCI "should" (nice guilt word) be in constant communication with the local dealership and know when a new trailer sells. What an opportunity! Win/Win/Win.
- Dealership gets post sale support (without major cost I might add)
- New owner gets exposure to WBCCI, gets tips and training on camping in their new Airstream, gets instantly welcomed into the AS family (all assume new buyer is willing or interested)
- WBCCI has the opportunity to help spread the Airstream value, name, reputation, and present itself to new owners

Part of the key for WBCCI is to get to a critical enough mass of 20/30 somethings so that they can decide as a group what events best fit their lives. Just like Jeep and his suggestions for the forum.

WBCCI has morphed to its current form as the generations have chosen directions that make sense for them. Until we can get a critical mass of a new generation there wont really be enough pull to create events, gatherings, etc that work for this new group. The key is to hang on to those that show interest long enough for them to get "re-enforcements" This is the part that I struggle with. I know there has been a lot of debate in this forum about some of the traditions of WBCCI. I completely agree with Steph: it is hard to pay dues for something that may not be providing me with obvious value. (It hasn't been bad for me because I love to learn from others, and WBCCI has some great people to learn from.)

I know what Steph means when she talks about situations like "Simpsons".

Quick Quiz:
1) Who knows what this references?
2) Anyone? Anyone? <----- another quiz question (hint: movie reference)

The winners: Please state your decade. 30's, 40's, 50's, etc...
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Old 09-29-2005, 02:01 PM   #19
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WOW, what a great Thread- this is exactly the discussion I was hoping to evoke.

I have read through it all and have a few comments.
The comment by stefrobrts about dying younger involvement in the groups is right on... it's true, but I don't feel that it's out of disregard for the groups. For example, I have been driving jeeps since I was 16, loved them used the first one off road almost every day. It wasn't until I was 20 when I chanced upon another jeeper that told me about an online Jeep cherokee XJ site (naxja.com) I had a love for the jeep, and wanted to modify it- I had no idea there was a group that existed both online with forums and offline doing meets, rally's, shows, and offroad trail runs... turns out this group was over 12,000 members strong.

I was able to meet others with the same interests, find deals, get tips, etc. Had I known of it earlier I would have been involved sooner. My point is that to this day, had that person not stopped me, talked to me expressing his similar interest I might not know to this day about the group. It's the same comeraderie, and feel I get with the Airstream groups and I feel that if we can reach out and show people that there is a group that is willing to help them with their troubles and guide them along the way- I KNOW they would be more likely to tackle the job of owning and taking care of a piece of vintage american heritage.

Wow I guess everyone is wordy today...

I would really like to continue but I have some work to do at the shop... I will try to get back on later today if possible, but I hope this was a tasty little morsel to chew on until I get back....

Keep up the excelent thread... at this point Im not necessailly pushing a youth section specifically... instead I hope that this will continue and touch many members of the club and open them up to push forward. By this I mean to take the extra step to show "youth" of all ages that there is a wonderful and inviting group of people here that would very much like to see them bcome interested in a lifestyle that we love so much- that we wish to share it with all around us.

Lets bring some new members in and show them what it's like to have thousands of inviting, helpful and loyal friends.(as long as you don't switch to an SOB...lol)
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Old 09-29-2005, 02:10 PM   #20
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Just to add a little bit extra, once you know people are out there to help you and interested in the same things... you keep coming back... This weekend I will be driving up to NH to attend a GMC Sierra Denali meet from www.Denalitrucks.com at epping raceway, next weekend I will be attending the wine rally with the WBCCI... I'm still an active member on www.naxja.com as well as another local jeep club called Weekend Jeepers.... You just need to be shown the light, and you will forever have friends in these clubs.
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Old 09-29-2005, 02:20 PM   #21
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Jerry, Jerry

Quote:
Originally Posted by sovereignrwe
1) Who knows what this references?
Is that the Jerry Springer thing?

I like the idea of holding WBCCI sponsored vintage get-togethers, open to all, as a way to attract the younger set that are buying vintage because that's all they can afford right now. Maybe the VAC members of the unit could put these together.
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Old 09-29-2005, 02:39 PM   #22
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Dougjamie did a great job with #1 - can we get your "generation" or decade?

Now who can hit the ball out of the park with an answer to the movie line in #2 (2nd & 3rd hints - the movie spawned 2) a hit song for the band -Yellow & 3) a career for a persistent broadway star)
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Old 09-29-2005, 02:56 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sovereignrwe
Dougjamie did a great job with #1 - can we get your "generation" or decade?)
I'm 40-something. So I guess I'm outed now (not a 20-30-something). I'm a 30-something at heart though. -J
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Old 09-29-2005, 03:20 PM   #24
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My wife and I are in our early 30's and have 3 kids. Yes, time is a definite issue, between hours spent at work, commuting, organized events and your normal "have to be done" items (chores), people have little extra time nowadays. I know issues that have come up for us in not attending rallies are:

-they have a tendency to be too far to get to after work without arriving after dark (I know this is probably a local thing) thus limiting your time on site (us young folks don't get all that much vacation time to burn

-the bigger rallies need to have their costs pro-rated, if possible, for those of us who cannot attend the whole time to justify the time and expense

-sometimes a less structured outing is appreciated too, a local unit we looked into has catered meals and such (more $), it is nice to just get out, relax and meet people without worrying about having to be at certain areas at certain times for a steady stream of events. Yes, I realize you can opt out at your own descretion, but then you aren't "participating".

-if we are going to take a trip, especially with a vintage rig, a fairground without utilities and facilities just doesn't work

Before I get jump on, I am not complaining, just giving some reasons that have kept us from getting to more events.

Personally, I don't see a need for an area for the younger crowd, todays society is splitting us up into too many groups as it is, the ability to communicate with a large cross section of people here is what makes it so interesting and brings me back daily to see what's going on.
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Old 09-29-2005, 03:27 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sovereignrwe
Now who can hit the ball out of the park with an answer to the movie line in #2 (2nd & 3rd hints - the movie spawned 2) a hit song for the band -Yellow & 3) a career for a persistent broadway star)
well, the correct quote is "Anyone?...Beuller?...."


yet, my answer is invalid, too, as I have recently entered my fifth decade

But as a fairly recent former 30-something....I think what others have said already is true. we're less clubby as a whole these days. Lots of little reasons that combined, have made a big impact. We generally work longer hours, farther away from home, for less money, and our expenses are much higher than previous generations. These are not lifestyle "choices", but pure necessity. By the time I get home at night (way past 7, usually), I'm done. I have no life during the week. I'm too tired to even do my own chores, let alone be involved in anything outside the house. OTOH...I get social interaction here with you fine people, so I have less of a need to go "down to the lodge" to schmooz with "da boyz".

p.s. I, too, thought that the boomer's ended in '62, and "gen x" started in '70, and leaving me in limbo. I can't relate to either group, having neither the finances of the former, nor the hip-ness of the latter.
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Old 09-29-2005, 04:11 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck
p.s. I, too, thought that the boomer's ended in '62, and "gen x" started in '70, and leaving me in limbo. I can't relate to either group, having neither the finances of the former, nor the hip-ness of the latter.
It is generally accepted and documented that the boomer generation ended in 1964 and the Gen-X generation started in 1965. There is an open debate with some boomers that the boomer generation is further sub-divided into two parts; the first part ends in 1958 and the second part begins in 1959. Also, keep in mind, these are definitions that are spawned by television and the media who just love to group people in target markets.
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Old 09-29-2005, 04:28 PM   #27
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Rally efforts

Time. Yes, that's a definite problem. Expenses. Yes, those are issues.

Our Unit has taken some steps in planning rallies that may help the 20 and 30 somethings, as well as those of us who are still working at any age;
1. Schedule rallies to run from Friday through Sunday. That means welcoming members whenever they arrive on Friday. (The older generation had been starting the rallies on Thursday and leaving early Sunday morning after breakfast). We have members that arrive well after dark and dinner. So, at the last rally we had soup, bread and coffee on from 6pm through about 10pm. Whenever members got in and parked, they helped themselves to dinner. The rest of us were hanging out nearby at the campfire. This met with good reviews and members felt really welcomed. Try to stay well into Sunday with group luncheon or picnics or activities. Don't rush off Sunday morning for home.
2. Publish events and schedules for rallies ahead of members arrival; that way we can plan expenses and groceries necessary without wasting time and money. Making things fun and interesting with themes has really helped alot.
3. Safari fields whenever possible; with water and electric. Typically, are less expensive. Safari field for the group can make for an area separate from the rest of the campground where kids have room to play and be observed by the parents at all times.
4. Tent; created a central gathering spot for everyone, so that there are no cliques at individual trailers/mh's. Inclusive, not exclusive gatherings.
5. Activities; try and have outdoor activities like hiking, biking, kayaking, etc. so that we are not sitting and eating all the time. Lots of free time and no plans are okay too.
6. Campfires; are a must. Great to relax and trade stories after dinner. Real wind down time.
7. Flexible and less rigid schedules. Meals are later times more typical or our work weeks; We've been trying to push rally meal times out a bit to 8am breakfast and 6pm or later for dinner.
8. Rally Locations; typically are within 1-3 hours of our membership. The average is about a 2 hour drive. (Not bad at the end of a work day.)

Our Unit president is organizing next year and has included the "Spring into Camping" rally. I believe this is a rally to prep the trailers and rv's for the season.

I'd also like to see a rally focused on rv repair and maintenance. That was mentioned previously and it is a great idea. We can all use this type of gathering, the 20 and 30 somethings included.

I'd also like to see a rally to help women new to rv'ing learn to hitch up and tow. Many of us have done this from the get go, but I am shocked at how many haven't taken this on. I've been taking off in the mh for all of the 10 years we've had them, (with and without the husband.) There are fewer older generation women towing and more in my generation. I am not sure about those younger, but haven't noticed that the women have been arriving or leaving doing the driving. Hmmm.

Anyway, those are just a few more thoughts about tailoring rallies to help our younger and still working members.
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Old 09-30-2005, 07:52 AM   #28
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Pam,

Sounds like you have a good handle on it, what you described sounded very workable. The itinerary in advance is a great idea, we've gone to campouts and had stuff going on we never knew about or found out too late, making it frustrating. Keep up the good work!
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