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Old 02-07-2004, 07:50 PM   #41
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Porky,

I think there is a club close to your idea. Its called the "Vintage Airstream Club-VAC".
We belonged to the WBCCI 20 years ago, but as a 32 year old at the time, no offense, we felt out of place.
Participating in our first VAC outing last August was a complete blast and a surprise.
All sorts of rigs were there, new, newer, and vintage. Most everyone was a weekender type, or made this rally their big summer trip.
We felt right at home. Shari Davis, our wagon mistress was great!
It was very re-freshing from past years.
A caveat, here, I think it may depend on where you are and who you are with and their atitudes.
I belonged to the Montana/Alberta Unit in the early 80's. I was ofcourse the youngest and we had some in their 80's. Frontier mentality and enthusiasm abound, and we rallied in open fields most of time WITHOUT hookups. Never a complaint.
Now my parents unit back east, well, "ZipDee chair potatoes" rings a bell. and "B.----,B----,B----, and B---- some more, if they didn't have 3 point hookups. I always wondered what's the point, having a self-contained RV.

The V-A-C is for us. Come join us in Colorado Springs the end of July.
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Old 02-07-2004, 08:09 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally posted by Coloradobus
The V-A-C is for us. Come join us in Colorado Springs the end of July.
Are you sure they won't stuff an apple in my mouth and roast me over an open pit for showing up in a 2004?
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Old 02-08-2004, 08:57 AM   #43
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Wink Hmmm....

Quote:
Are you sure they won't stuff an apple in my mouth and roast me over an open pit for showing up in a 2004?
We were wondering what we'd do for the Saturday night feast!

If you want additional information, check out 2004 Rocky Mountain VAC Rally

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Old 02-08-2004, 09:04 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally posted by Porky Pig


Are you sure they won't stuff an apple in my mouth and roast me over an open pit for showing up in a 2004?
Our unit was happy to have me bring my 2003 International to our "Vintage Rally" last year to serve as a comparison to the vintage units. Everyone thought it was neat to see what had changed and what had stayed the same.
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Old 02-08-2004, 09:25 AM   #45
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Survey

My BB finally came yesterday and I have the survey ready to send. I had to write a whole lot of comments because I didn't think that the survey questions allowed me to fully make my opinions known.

I am retired, but the way I use my trailer is much more like the working folks than the majority of our unit who take off for months at a time. I prefer anywhere from 2-night to 5-night rallies and I'm happy to stay in this area. I have no use for rallies any larger or much more remote than our region rally.

Our unit is moving toward some shorter, close-in rallies and I support that direction. We have discussed having some no-host rallies which would be much more like the forum rallies and there seems to be enthusiasm to do so. We prorate fees for every rally so that folks who can come only part time are not penalized.

Our unit is about to experience quite a bit of attrition; one trailer has been sold and several will be sold in the very near future. A number of folks will be active for only a few more years.

By the way, there are beer, wine, and campfires to be found at our rallies and I have yet to see anyone object.
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Old 02-08-2004, 09:28 AM   #46
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Question VAC a sub of WBCCI

Coloradobus,

Isn't VAC a subsidiary of WBCCI in that you cannot join it directly without first having joined WBCCI? I could probably find time for one but not both so it makes no sense really belonging to both.
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Old 02-08-2004, 09:35 AM   #47
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Thumbs up Blue Beret Arrived Yesterday

...and in good condition. Nice picture of the polar bear.

Now I know what bugs me about those berets. With the large emblem they are worn differently than the way say Army Rangers wear theirs. They kind of look goofy puffed up. I'd prefer a black gimmie bill cap. I collect black caps and seem to pick up a new one with every vacation.
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Old 02-08-2004, 10:14 AM   #48
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Davydd,

Yes, you have to be a member of the WBCCI to be a member of the VAC intra club.

As for the berets, the only time I wear mine is when I am participating in a WBCCI function that requires the "uniform". Otherwise it just sits in the closet. There are many members that would like to see the beret changed to some type of baseball cap with the patch or an embroidered logo on it.
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Old 02-08-2004, 12:56 PM   #49
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Caravanners and Rallies

Well been away all weekend on Unit Rally and I see there has been much said. It is so obvious that the folks who are throwing rocks, even though they claim they are not, are the ones who have not even tried it out.

Let me point out a few things:

The WBCCI is not just a caravanning club. I have been a member for two years. I have never been on a Caravan. I have been to a Unit Rally practically every month. These rallies are three days long. Now that proves that you are wrong about no events for working class people. Most WBCCI events are during the weekend. So put a sock in it and quit crying " There are no events for the working generation" That is complete bologna!

Now , Campfires, we burned four truckloads of fire wood last month. That is no exxageration. once again, you would probably know better if you were there.

Hats, I did not see one hat. NOT ONE! But I did see folks dressed casually just like you probably are. I am certain if you wish to show up in your cut up sheet, they would welcome you and laugh with you, not at you.

Age group, over half of the attending members are still employed. FACT!

Members of this forum that are officers. There are no less than four international officers on this very forum. And I would say, no less than thirty unit officers. I know in our unit alone, at least six to seven are members of this forum and other Airstream forums. They are humble and they may choose not to have the spotlight shined on them. You never know who is standing next to you when you speak. That is one of the hardest lessons I have ever learned in my life. I am certain we all know what our foot taste like. Again, if you were a member of the WBCCI, you would know who the officers are. BUT YOU ARE NOT!

Changing the name of the club. Never lose sight of the fact that the WBCCI is not owned, a part of or governed by Airstream. The Wally Byam Caravan Club International is named for the INVENTOR and CREATOR of the Airstream. Now would you expect us to change the name of your father, for promotional purposes? Wake Up! Remember, If there was no Wally Byam, you would not own an Airstream. Oh but you do own an Airstream, dont you?, claim you are an Airstreamer.....

some folks wish to convey their opinion but they do not wish to participate.

Maybe you should join some other RV club, there is plenty of room for people that do not wish to be in the WBCCI,

Well, I am out of soap..............

Oh, by the way, our unit grew by four more units this month.

Now how is that for declining numbers.

We had a BLAST this weekend, and boy we sure did miss you.
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Old 02-08-2004, 01:23 PM   #50
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Wink Calm down Ken

Ken,

Did I not echo your sentiment about the idea of changing the club? I agree. It is not Thor's club and there is no place for those white box SOBs.

About those berets.

"Hats, I did not see one hat. NOT ONE!"

That speaks volumes. I would want a hat that everyone would wear proudly. No reason why the club couldn't sanction different hats. The berets for tradition and ceremony and ball caps for every day and work wear. Even the military does that.

Chastise me. Flog me. Beat me. I'm a member but also kind of an observer looking from the outside since I haven't towed my Airstream anywhere. From what I see initially the only enticement is the exclusiveness of the Airstream trailer.
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Old 02-08-2004, 01:35 PM   #51
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Calm

I am calm now............

Just gets so old, (as I am sure people feel about me), to see people stereo-type the WBCCI.

If you go back to my first trip to a WBCCI function, I too did not know what it was about. So I asked.

There were mixed opinions. So many that I decided to find out for myself.

Granted, I was able to sample it for free and I will do the same for you, I will pay your unit fees for the first year, (the SCCU).

I truly wish that I could pack all of you up, and bring you to one of our unit rallies. You would see what a WBCCI unit could be like if you put you mind to it.

Last month we had three new units come and see for themselves, they signed up.
This month we had four, actually three were present and fourth not. They were truly excited and are already looking forward to the next event. The SC State Rally is sold out. This was due to the reputation that we have developed and the fun we have demonstrated to many new members.

It is a product of "seeing it for myself" that has given me such conviction on spreading the word.

I too was on the outside looking in, and now I am a part of this family, VERY PROUDLY!

Dont knock it until you try it. Dont take some one elses opinion, make your own. Always be your own judge and not some one elses.

Come one come all!

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Old 02-08-2004, 02:03 PM   #52
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Ken,

All I can say is WOW 4 new members, GREAT!

The rest of your post has me a bit concerned. I could not advocate sending anyone to a Samboree, or some other type of club. As I stated earlier in the thread I cannot see how the club can change from the outside. You are a vocal supporter of the club as am I. Your unit is a shining example of what can be done and what it will take to attract new, younger members.

Unfortunately many other units do not have members that have the desire and energy to push change. Most people are comfortable in their "box". Either they do not want change, or are unwilling to make the effort to create change. In my experience this leads to the situation of having the same thing that was done, or in place for many years being all that is done.

With so many of us brought up with fast paced television, and our fast paced lives I think that the Airstream lifestyle offers a chance to slow down and take a breather, to a point. I am not an advocate of chat and chew rallies. I want to have things offered to me to do. If I choose to go and do, fine, my choice. If I am in an area that I do not know I would assume that the rally hosts will have scouted things for me to do that I either was not aware of, or what would be the best use of my time and or money. I liken it to a being on a cruse ship. There is a full schedule of events, and to do's, but you do what you want of it.

Of course doing these things (rally planning) takes time and energy. Besides having to tap into the creative spirit to do theme rallies and the like. I believe that these talents are available but untapped in most WBCCI units. There is a depth of knowledge that is astonishing held by the members, and for the most part they all wish to be involved, but they need a little prodding. One thing to do is to ask the members what they did at rallies that made a lasting impression on them and they would like to do again.

That prodding needs to come form the MEMBERS of the unit. Outside prodding, "I will join your unit if you do this type of rally or event" will never work. So join. Place your own opinion on the table about what you think should be done to add to the "value" of the rallies and your unit. I love the idea of a 3 day caravan.

Looking at the club as a whole is deceiving. Hats, uniforms, flag ceremonies, consitution and bylaws. These have little to do with the general membership and having fun at a rally. The local units are the heart and soul of the club and can vary from units that meet 3-4 times a year to rally and others like mine that have 8 unit rallies a year, plus some years do a WBCCI numbered unit caravan. I will agree that the unit you join should be a fair fit for you and your plans, but from there change is not that hard to effect. All you have to do is speak up. Of course there may be consequences, you may be asked to help implement your desired changes, but then you have control and can make it your own.

At the least try a WBCCI unit rally before you take Ken's advice and join a Samboree. You need to experience what we are talking about to really tell the difference.

Sorry about another long post.
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Old 02-08-2004, 02:08 PM   #53
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OK Ken,

I think I was one of those "folks" you were refering to so...

Let me know if my facts are wrong.

FACT: The WBCCI membership numbers are decreasing. Am I wrong?

FACT: The WBCCI has a problem recuiting new members especially new owners. Why is this?

FACT: I've been an an owner since 1998 and have not been attracted to WBCCI.

FACT: Not all local units look and act like yours. If they did, there would be NO PROBLEM with membership! I am jealous of SCC unit. How 'bout moving out to Northern Cal and leading a unit?

FACT: Many people have attended unit rallies only to feel left out or it was not for them, as they have said in this forum.

FACT: I am a member at large. I will attend the Region 12 Rally in October.

OPINION: I think it is the job of current officers to make the club more appealing. Period.

OPINION: I think VAC has got it right.

OPINION: Your hot reaction to this discussion is exactly why new people would not want to join and try to "fight" for change. It does not sound appealing.
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Old 02-08-2004, 07:27 PM   #54
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An obvious change

I too noticed the difference in this months or this years magazine. It was obvious that the magazine has taken on a new direction. While maintaining the original menu, adding some zest to the mag.

I am certain that it will only get better.

I have been talking with both WBCCI and Airstream and there are very strong movements to evolve and become attractive to todays Airstreamers.

I am glad to be a part of that.

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Old 02-08-2004, 09:52 PM   #55
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Well, well, well.....

Our old WBCCI conversation has shown it's face yet once again! Have we not heard the chimes at midnight........ either way, I have my flame suit on in FULL effect!

You know, I find it amusing to say the least that all this bickering still goes on. About a month ago, there was World War 3 going on and few folks even batted and eye. Some comments here I fully support and agree with, while some I think are about as worthless as the publication (sorry had to keep it on topic).

Here are some opinions (mixed with some facts) that I offer (again for the record) :

1) If there were a cool club be it WBCCI or something else, I'd join it, but only if it were for Airstreams and Argosy RVs and I wasn't asked to change the world to make it work for my generation. Adding other RVs just cause they are by the same parent company is a total joke. Next car clubs across the nation will blow off the uniqueness of their clubs to augment numbers to a dying breed (no pun inteded here) allowing all cars if they have 4 wheels into their clubs.

2) If 30 somethings are in the numbers spoken about here, they all must be independently wealthy since few 30 somethings that I know can participate to even 1/4 the level some of the older crowed can, let alone even afford one of these units be it new or old. Moreover the looks that are given when you break the norm of what is considered acceptible (hats, drinks, campfires, etc). And I know, not all local units are that way....they just don't happen to be in my state!

3) I don't agree or subscribe to the fact that you gotta be in WBCCI to make a change. I personally think the folks running the show are scared to death to see the number falling off and ideas are starting to comeout of the woodwork on how to stop the bleeding (like this half baked idea of allowing other Thor RVs into WBCCI). I mean what a novel idea, pay us to belong, and oh, by the way, we need your help to better understand you so that we can improve, but remember to pay the full dues before you start to help us help you belong and fit in.... Personally, I think my taking a walk has spoken louder to WBCCI than every word I have ever posted here on this forum. I have neither the time nor the desire to try to fundementally change the stale orginization it has become (again not true of all local units). True there are some very cool local units and I am happy for them, but the fish stinks from the head down and as such if change is going to happen, they will be the ones to make the first step, as I don't pay dues to fix major problems. I just got hit up to join the Royal Order of The Moose and sure they have problems, but they have there stuff together and they have, for the most part, been able to bridge the generation gap far better than most, but not as good as some. May not join it either, but compared to the current WBCCI national orginization, The Moose run circles around it when it comes to bridging the generation gap and they don't need my dues to start to change things, they have the basics covered and to me, I'd rather not have to fix a broken club...don't mind tweaking it, but don't kid yourself, WBCCI (as a whole minus some great loca groups) is VERY broken. The fact that such a desperate act of letting other RVs into it is on the table of discussion proves it the acts of disparity. To bad they can't seem to get it right nationally as some of the handful of local groups has been able to do.

4) One last thing that I find funny above all else. This discussion has been going on for over a year now on this forum alone (as far as I can tell).......and what has fundementally changed since the very first forum discussion on this subject (given all the feedback that has been sent up to "officers"...or did I just miss something...which is entirely possible.

5) This thread has gotten way off topic and should be split into one of the existing 12 other threads hashing out this problem.

But of all else, trust me on the allowing other RVs into WBCCI thing!

Twinkie has left the forum (for tonight at least).


Edit: Thread was split and as such some comments might not make sense, but they are still here as is.
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Old 02-08-2004, 11:04 PM   #56
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Obviously things are seriously wrong with the International organization. The free offer for first time owners went down in flames due to the fact that the majority of these new members left when their free year expired. Now you can say what you will about the success of specific local units, but the bottom line is that if you can't keep these new members, then we are not meeting their expectations or the value received for the dues dollars paid are not there.

Those who developed this survey have some pretty good ideas of what the problems are. Many of the questions in this new survey reflect issues which have been discussed by many in these forums. The question is will they be willing to make the changes necessary to start turning the organization around.

Lets face the facts. I have come to realize that the bulk of my dues go to support an International organization who's main goal is to put on an International Rally which for all intents attracts a small percentage of the overall membership who suffer in weather conditions that would alarm most health agencies.

Events that I have attended are predictable and suffer due to tradition and the attitude that this is the way we do things. I attended my first and last regional rally last year which was nothing more that a unit rally with additional ceremony added in. Also present were some chidings from some of the regional attendees that I didn't have my numbers on my trailer and that they better be there the next time they see me. (Well I won't be there for you to chide me further and they won't be on the new Classic either.)

I cannot take issue with the friendships we have gained through the local organization though, and these friendships are really what keeps me in.

The new survey is already tainted in that you are asking the choir if you like the pastor (sort of the inverse of preaching to the choir). Its awfully hard to get the surveys to reflect the problems when the folks who want change have already left the organization. The survey's you need to look at should be sent to those who leave the organization or do not join.

The saving grace for this organization wil be VAC which will continue and grow. The old guard will leave by age or death and the VAC membership will eventually become the core group which will change and revitalize the organization.

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Old 02-08-2004, 11:07 PM   #57
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Quote:
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Well, well, well.....

Personally, I think my taking a walk has spoken louder to WBCCI than every word I have ever posted here on this forum.

I just got hit up to join the Royal Order of The Moose and sure they have problems, but they have there stuff together . . .

Twinkie
Twinkie:

I agree with you. Your loudest message to the WBCCI was walking away from it, not your Forum posts, and I for one hope you keep steadfast and true on your most effectve message beam. I'm sure you'll look great in antlers.
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Old 02-08-2004, 11:21 PM   #58
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Blue Beret to WBCCI

I only have one issue of the BB and have already posted my (Ed's, not Debbie's) opinion. No one has yet responded to our request for a screen-name change.

We just joined the Region 9, NTU-WBCCI this week. We are going to give it a try, with our eyes open. After a 2+ yr. VERY happy time with the CasitaClub we have a base line of comparasion. The CC is a totally forum based 'club'; no officers, no dues, no hats, no ceremonies, ...just a lot of cost-efficient rallys and fun exchange of ideas, tips, etc. We will miss that group.

With that said, we are now very proud owners of an Airstream and feel it is a special community. I like the exchange on this forum. We joined the WBCCI as it is, yet open-minded. I remember getting some advise when I was in college during the very late 60's; "If you want to change a 'system' it is much eaiser from the inside than the outside". We will give it (WBCCI) the 'college try'. Stay tuned...
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Old 02-08-2004, 11:22 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally posted by jcanavera
The saving grace for this organization wil be VAC which will continue and grow. The old guard will leave by age or death and the VAC membership will eventually become the core group which will change and revitalize the organization.
Wow Jack,

I didn't think of that but now that you point it out, VAC will eventually move into International leadership positions and the club will evolve. VAC already has the mag. Very interesting thought.

PS: Sure wish i could join you guys for your Midwest Rally. It sure sounds like fun. Maybe next year...
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Old 02-09-2004, 01:02 AM   #60
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Don't stifle debate

" 'So put a sock in it and quit crying' There are no events for the working generation" That is complete bologna!"

Ken,

The discussion and debate going on in this forum is precisely what should be going on within the WBCCI both at the local level and International level, and it should be aired as publicly as possible. Your comment though probably reflects a general attitude within the organization that sees debate as bologna, and stifles it with complex and rigid parliamentary procedures and rules, if not by outright defensiveness. I can understand your getting defensive, but we need to listen and be willing to change.

BTW, it is not bologna. We have members in our unit that cannot attend the International solely because the 4th of July is their busiest time of the year. They will likely never be able to attend, but the WBCCI has been very resistant to change the date out of respect for Wally Byam's birthday. You say why change the name? Well, I happen to admire Wally Byam, but we should be able to legitimately ask, what benefit does the club gain through the use of Byam's name and image? Does it instead give us an image of being quirky? Does it distract from the goals and mission of the club, or help? And just to keep this discussion somewhat on the topic of the original thread, why are these questions not discussed in articles or letters to the editor in the Blue Beret? If the organization is open to debate and discussion, then why are there no letters to the editor in the BB?

"Dont knock it until you try it. Dont take some one elses opinion, make your own. Always be your own judge and not some one elses."

Yes, well, I'm trying it. And it has been three years. I'm a trustee, and I'm active. I really like everyone I've met, but there are some things about the WBCCI that really bother me. But SilverTwinkie has a point -- how much energy and money and time and effort should anyone be expected to put into a volunteer organization just to get it to listen and accept change? This is a problem. The club is not open about the actual number of members we are losing. I only learned of it from this forum, and had to tally it from the Membership Directory - 2004 shows 7,546 member units, down 256 from the 7,802 member units in 2002. Members have a right to know what is happening and why it is happening. The BB has not adequately addressed the membership issue or any other controversy for that matter. This needs to change.

Forrest
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