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Old 01-23-2007, 11:59 AM   #101
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Shape Up or Ship Out

It's ironic that the same board that dressed down the VAC president last year at the International in Salem (shape up or ship out you pot-smoking radicals of WBCCI) now wants VAC votes, among others, to help them to retain their WBCCI membership by allowing owners of non-Airstream products in the club.

The 2007 delegates' meeting will be interesting, even more so than those of at Springfield in 2005 and at Salem last year.
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Old 01-23-2007, 02:28 PM   #102
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A few lessons to be learned!

Hello all -

It seems that WBCCI has a LOT of improvements it needs to get started on POST HASTE - to keep the membership #'s out of further free fall, toward certain oblivion...

Just spent an enjoyable hour reading the Highway publication. Lots of the content doesn't interest me directly since it references MH's, accident insurance, etc.... BUT, I look at EVERY page!!! BB, by contrast takes about 10 minutes to scan - MAX! Repetative content, coupons, beauty queens, old travel logs. At least 9/10 of it is a waste of paper. Anyone at WBCCI listening??

GS club is actively WORKING to expand their services, the benefits and ultimately the reason for joining. They are becoming the 800lb gorilla in the RV world, and WHY? Membership, lots of members!!! WBCCI, by contrast, is a JOKE!! No wonder folks are stampeeding towards the exits....

It's like that wreck you can see happening - awful to see, but you can't look away. I am sorry to see the Legacy and the hardwork frittered away...!

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Old 01-23-2007, 03:10 PM   #103
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I'm really getting concerned

Can the WBCCI survive? I would hope so.

I have been involved in WBCCI pretty much my whole life in one way or another.I love the club and have tons of good memories.I have met the greatest people and have made many life long friendships.

I have a feeling of helplessness right now.I'm seeing a once great club dismantled one piece at a time by a small group of folks that are doing what they want and totally ignoring the wishes of the majority of the general membership.

In part,the helplessness I'm feeling is that there doesn't seem to be any system in place to vote out or impeach these folks quickly before they totally destroy the club. I really hope that the IBT see's the light before it's too late for them or the club.

If I have offended anyone you have my apologies . It's the frustration and the sense of helplessness talking.
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Old 01-23-2007, 04:20 PM   #104
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There have been officers elected to high office without the nominating committee's approval. Jerry Larson was elected International 3rd VP when the failed to recommend the single nominee they had. Running from the floor is not that hard if you have some prior with the club and a good reputation. If the candidate has a firm commitment to the member's needs and gets the word out, I think a good person could run successfully for third VP of international or any of the regions. If we could get good candidates to run in every region for four years and the International for three years we could have control of the IBT and make some meaningful improvements. The time is ripe for improvement. It can happen. Now we need some dedicated volunteers. Progressive Party platforn and support will follow.
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Old 01-23-2007, 07:05 PM   #105
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What takes so long?

(Kimber here... signing on as a new entity! I picked Wally 54 'cus I just couldn't be Mrs. Buttercup, ya know?)

In Salem this last year I was talking with a neighbor. While discussing the name change and programs and policies that might help the WBCCI in recruiting younger, new-unit members, he said, 'You have some pretty good ideas. Why don't you get in office in your local unit." Then he said, "12 years from now you could be at the top!"

I laughed. I said that's a process that takes way toooooooo long. And, being a little dismayed with the whole name change thing and gasping at the 12 year figure under my breath, I commented that there probably won't be a club in 12 years. And if the name changed I wouldn't be a part of that new club anyway. I was somewhat joking then. I'm not so sure, now.

It is difficult when there is little information out about the candidates, especially from different regions of the country, poor Web presence and all. I think that most of us assume that the next in line will automatically be approved. There's no real choice here. No naysayers at the annual delegates meeting. And, as we have seen recently, I'm sure they all have different agendas.

I also think that members don't feel they have the power to change the course of the future. Every month there is an entire page in the BB taken up with pictures and titles of the IBT members. Could it be that the intended purpose of this page is a recognition of these folks as the future officers and that there is no changing the course of the future?

Of late, though, I've been pondering different thoughts. Yes, dwightdi, If we keep discussing these issues maybe the members will feel more empowered and change will come for the better. This club has got to survive. It's an American Icon just like the silver trailer. America loves us and we love it.

It just might be time for a new strategy to take hold.

If the IBT doesn't work, chuck it!
I say if the Blue Book doesn't work, chuck it!
Start from a fresh 21-Century approach!

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Old 01-24-2007, 09:08 AM   #106
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Wally Crying

Why is Wally crying?

Because he needs to find a new club to join. His vision has been lost!
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Old 01-24-2007, 01:09 PM   #107
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Because he needs to find a new club to join. His vision has been lost!
In these forums, maybe - there are a lot of examples from a few folks who want demographic based clubs and virtual clubs and politics and propaganda and intolerance and other such things.

But out in the wild, that's where the spirit of Wally Byam lives. Attending rallies, getting out in the RV, seeing new places, making new friends, being respectful of others (and for reality).

No, Wally's not crying. Its a handful of folks who seem bitter and angry because others won't toe their view of the world who seem to be in tears. The rest of us are out camping and seeing new things and making new friends.
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Old 01-24-2007, 03:08 PM   #108
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I bet Wally would be right here, encouraging us to not worry about all this stuff, and to do just what you said...get out, enjoy the road.
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Old 01-24-2007, 03:10 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by Leipper
In these forums, maybe - there are a lot of examples from a few folks who want demographic based clubs and virtual clubs and politics and propaganda and intolerance and other such things.

But out in the wild, that's where the spirit of Wally Byam lives. Attending rallies, getting out in the RV, seeing new places, making new friends, being respectful of others (and for reality).

No, Wally's not crying. Its a handful of folks who seem bitter and angry because others won't toe their view of the world who seem to be in tears. The rest of us are out camping and seeing new things and making new friends.
Bryan,

Please see post #122 on the BBCCI MOHO Poll thread.

Thanks,

Don
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Old 01-24-2007, 03:33 PM   #110
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6 steps

6 steps to SaveWally

ignorance
confusion
denial
enlightenment
anger
action

Seems like there may be some out there that still have a few steps to go....
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Old 01-24-2007, 04:26 PM   #111
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Originally Posted by 65GT
You folks would rather protect flag ceremonies and funny red jackets? Is this believable at any level? Argghhhhh...

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Indeed, unbelievable. <sigh>
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Old 01-25-2007, 12:25 PM   #112
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can WBCCI survive?

My feeling is yes. BUT... it will change and evolve. I just hope and I believe the primary identity, the core beliefs, and solid foundation will endure. I think the pessimistic attitudes expressed on many threads of this forum are not representative of the majority. I imagine what could happen if the negativity and antagonism expressed in many of the discussions on the forums could be channeled in a more positive, collaborative, and cooperative direction.


Changes have happened. It may be baby steps but at least for me, it is an indication that someone is listening. It is an indication that the leadership does care as much as any other member of WBCCI. Take for instance the Blue Book. When I got involved in our local unit in 1996, it was considered a secret document and only the Unit President and other board members could have access. Now it is available on the WBCCI website. Look at the recent idea to offer websites to WBCCI Units through the WBCCI website. Look at the WBCCI forum and the Youth site. Consider the Merit Award Program and other efforts that have been tried to encourage membership. Look at the Dealership program developed by a Unit and now used by other Units with WBCCI support. There are examples in the Blue Beret, the International Rallies and other components of WBCCI as well. Yes, there is work to be done and things could be improved, but at least an effort is being made. Someone is listening.


I know many people are impatient. They think change should happen now. They don't want to wait years for things to change. They don't want to wait for motions to move through the establish system – from a proposal sent by a Unit to the Region, from the Region to the IBT mid winter meeting, from acceptance at the Mid Winter meeting back to the Region and Units for consideration, for the Units to elect their delegate and represent the Unit at the meeting at the Rally in July for something to happen. They don't want to invest years moving up through the leadership system gaining experience along the way. Yes, there has to be a balance but rash decisions often exacerbate the problems they are trying to solve. From many of the misunderstandings and misinformation I have seen expressed on some of these threads, it seems as if some of the proponents of quick change haven't made enough of an effort to understand and be informed before proposing change. This to me, does not bode well for effective change.


I personally have been chipping away at things that concern me since 1998 and my attendance at the International Rally in Boise. Sometimes I get very frustrated. Sometimes I totally disagree with the ideas and proposed changes put before the members. I often feel my voice isn't heard and that my input doesn't count. But I believe in WBCCI so I keep on being an active participant in my local unit as well as in other capacities. I try to keep my concerns within the organization rather than express them to the general public. To communicate my concerns to the leadership from the Unit level to the national level. I have tried to work with and support the leadership while making clear my feelings and position on issues I feel are vital to the identity and existence of WBCCI. And, I have discovered by being patient and persistent, things do change. Ideas do evolve. It may be at a snails pace and sometimes off target but WBCCI is moving forward and I, for one do not feel it is on the brink of disaster.


I think there are some serious issues that need serious solutions. I think membership may continue to decline unless some issues are addressed but I also feel that some of the proposed quick solutions are just as threatening to increasing membership. Imagine if, instead of suggesting we throw out the baby with the bathwater, we exerted energy towards making the efforts begun by WBCCI more effective, more up to date, and more in line with member needs. Call me delusional but I feel by being a little patient and working through the system, maintaining the standards and values that invigorated this organization for 50 years I think WBCCI will rebound and will have a strong future.
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Old 01-25-2007, 12:43 PM   #113
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Call me delusional but I feel by being a little patient and working through the system, maintaining the standards and values that invigorated this organization for 50 years I think WBCCI will rebound and will have a strong future.

Diane- Well written and kind thoughtfull words. I will agree with 99% of what you expressed, but sometimes we need to look deep into the issue, listen to what is being said by our leaders and try best to understand their meaning. The current fire to the majority of the WBCCI membership as I see it, is allowing non-Airstream units into the club. "Maintaining the standards and values..." Our charter is very clear on this, If you own any trailer or motorhome manufactured by Airstream, Inc., WBCCI offers you fun and exciting opportunities to enjoy your Airstream and the RV Lifestyle. Whether you are traveling with your children or have retired to travel the world, you can do it best in the oldest and finest RV association, the Wally Byam Caravan Club International (WBCCI). Right from the home page of OUR website. Where have our values gone when a small group of high seated members decide to change the true fiber of our organization to suit their immediate needs? Soon our organization will be WBSOBCCI (Wally Byam Some Other Brand Caravan Club International). What I find most irronic is that some of the individuals who are promoting this current change to our organization are the same who opposed allowing Argosys into the camp, and not so long ago, 1992 - 94 opposed even Airstream Motor Homes. My how times change!
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Old 01-25-2007, 12:58 PM   #114
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Diane,

You say WBCCI is moving forward and that you don't feel it is on the brink of disaster. I'm sorry. I do not agree with you. I don't even think you agree with you. Two sentences after you say this, you yourself acknowledge membership is declining. You also correctly realize that "there are some serious issues." The most serious issue facing WBCCI, IMHO, is the IBT's proposed amendment to our Constitution. When you refer to "some of the proposed quick solutions [that] are just as threatening to increasing membership" I can only assume that you are referring to the IBT's rash, poorly thought out, proposed quick fix.

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Old 01-25-2007, 01:40 PM   #115
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I know I'm about to be flamed here, but I want to interject a couple of observances.

A lot of people have stated what Wally Byam would have said or done on this issue. First of all, Wally Byam had nothing to do with the WBCCI. He was dead when it was formally chartered and its constitution drafted. Yes, he lead caravans, we all know that. Yes, he wore a blue beret so people could pick him out in a sea of people. Yes, he wore a red blazer so people could pick him out in a crowd. He was a showman and he knew how to draw attention to himself...not a bad thing for a leader. The WBCCI adopted these fashions in honor of him. The club was named for him after he died to honor his memory.

Second, he had been dead more than 10 years when Airstream introduced the Argosy. He had been dead about 15 years when Airstream introduced its first motor home. How can we know how he would have felt or what he would have said about the current issue. True he took non-Airstreams on his early caravans. I'm sure he treated them no different than the owners of Airstreams on his caravans. But the point is that for the most part, he had nothing to do with the WBCCI. The fist meetings, rallies and Internationals were held after he died. So I don't think it is so important to try and figure out how he would have stood on the issue. I'm sure he would have been OK with a caravan club that was open to everyone. But that was because if it were his club it would have been one of only two RV clubs available to campers in the '50's. But it's not his club. It was formed for Airstreams by Airstreamers. And for nearly 50 years it has been run for Airstreams only. Now we are told that the top officers want to throw that out for the sole purpose of their own convenience.

I would compare this, similarly to another analogy offered by another forum member, to a club for Camaro owners. GM no longer makes Camaros, so the top officers of the Camaro Owners Club goes to GM and ask if GM would make a Camaro Edition of the Cadillac CTX so they could buy a new sports car and stay officers in the club. Doesn't that seem preposterous? Doesn't that seem a lot like the Airstream Edition of the Mandalay and Four Winds, et al.

My point is that we have to look at the here and now on this issue. I see that this issue is as divisive as the name change was a year ago. It's not good for the club and it may be much more detrimental to the club than declining membership.

I think each member of the WBCCI should turn to their local unit and work from the grass roots on this issue no matter which side of the issue you fall on. All the energy that is being put into these threads on the forums should be put into typing letters to the local officers and/or fellow members of the local units. Attend your next rally and discuss the issue, calmly and civilly, and try to influence your local members. It is definitely apparent that all of the post on this and the other threads on this topic are not going to change anyone's mind here.

Tom, AKA Minnie's Mate.
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Old 01-25-2007, 02:00 PM   #116
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Wally died in 1962 the club was founded in 1955 and named after him, at least that is what is stated on the WBCCI Page.

"He was thus enormously pleased in 1955 when a group of his followers actually beat him to the next logical step; they founded a club of their own which would “localize” caravanning and put it on a year round basis. Of course, they named it after him."


Tidewater Virginia Unit states the club was chartered in 1956 and Unit 111 in 1970.

Thanks Jim
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Old 01-25-2007, 02:02 PM   #117
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Tom, I'm not so sure about your history - see Wally Byam on Wikipedia, for instance. And he did leave his four freedoms and plenty of example.

Quote:
I think each member of the WBCCI should turn to their local unit and work from the grass roots on this issue no matter which side of the issue you fall on. All the energy that is being put into these threads on the forums should be put into typing letters to the local officers and/or fellow members of the local units. Attend your next rally and discuss the issue, calmly and civilly, and try to influence your local members. It is definitely apparent that all of the post on this and the other threads on this topic are not going to change anyone's mind here.
This deserves emphasis and repeating and taking to heart, IMHO. Internal business of the club should be handled within the club and its code of ethics should guide the tone of the conversation.

ALSO: check WB's creed at the end of the wikipedia article.
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Old 01-25-2007, 02:03 PM   #118
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Say what?

Quote:
A lot of people have stated what Wally Byam would have said or done on this issue. First of all, Wally Byam had nothing to do with the WBCCI. He was dead when it was formally chartered and its constitution drafted.
Huh? According to the official history, WBCCI was formed in 1955 and Wally died in 1962.

WBCCI.org

Who's right here?

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Old 01-25-2007, 03:05 PM   #119
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Furthermore...the 2007 International is the 50th International Rally. Wally has been gone 45 years. Wally must have attended at least five Internationals.
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Old 01-25-2007, 03:45 PM   #120
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraBreeze
... I know many people are impatient. They think change should happen now. They don't want to wait years for things to change. They don't want to wait for motions to move through the establish system – from a proposal sent by a Unit to the Region, from the Region to the IBT mid winter meeting, from acceptance at the Mid Winter meeting back to the Region and Units for consideration, for the Units to elect their delegate and represent the Unit at the meeting at the Rally in July for something to happen. They don't want to invest years moving up through the leadership system gaining experience along the way. Yes, there has to be a balance but rash decisions often exacerbate the problems they are trying to solve. From many of the misunderstandings and misinformation I have seen expressed on some of these threads, it seems as if some of the proponents of quick change haven't made enough of an effort to understand and be informed before proposing change. This to me, does not bode well for effective change.
Hi Diane:

Thank you for your thoughtful comments, and kudos for your Unit's excellent web site that honors and preseves WBCCI history. I spend far too much time there.

One big problem with the club is it's once-every-6-months, we-gotta-be-facing-each-other decision cycle. Getting proposals up and comments back down that long chain of command in 6 month steps takes far too long for today's faster paced world. Don Shafer created an innovative solution: the Communications Liasion, Renee Ettline, who side steps that cholesterol clogged staircase and takes new ideas and suggestions directly to the very top. The fact this good solution emminated from the top tells everyone that some people on the IBT know the club's decision-making stairway structure is outmoded and needs to be changed. Others up there may feel safe and comfortable by forcing proposals to march up and down on a 6 month schedule.

By contrast, one intra-club discusses core matters by email and can make a go/no go decision within 48 hours. We're all over the country (as well as the map), but reach a decision using modern instantaneous communications, no face time required. When we do get together, we spend our face time enjoying each other's company, not conducting business (except, of course, at the club's business rally called International).

The original stair step concept likely contemplated ideas would bubble and gain primordal form in the numerous units, and the best ideas would continue to flow upward to the IBT, while less worthy ideas would be filtered out. But in practice, it appears to me that the most innovative ideas and proposals get captured and filtered out at the Regional level, while the craziest ideas are hatched directly at the very highest level, with little to no input from all the members in the hold.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sierra Breeze
... I try to keep my concerns within the organization rather than express them to the general public. To communicate my concerns to the leadership from the Unit level to the national level. I have tried to work with and support the leadership while making clear my feelings and position on issues I feel are vital to the identity and existence of WBCCI. And, I have discovered by being patient and persistent, things do change. Ideas do evolve. It may be at a snails pace and sometimes off target but WBCCI is moving forward and I, for one do not feel it is on the brink of disaster.
Escargot, anyone? Many of us still working stiffs use email and web sites to conduct our everyday business. We operate in a virtural world on a schedule faster than a once-every-6-month meeting to get things accomplished. The IBT could be faster acting. If they have a concern with a proposal coming before them later in the week, they could contact the proponents by phone or email early in the week, discuss those concerns, perhaps resolve them, and then act upon a revised proposal at their formal meeting later in the week. If some proposal needs review by a certain committee, have that committee review the proposal during its meeting or call a quick meeting to review it on the spot. Our leaders should, when gathered together, take quick action whenever necessary to help the club grow and prosper. Instead, they ask the proposal to be withdrawn for another 6 month wait. How uninspiring.

Alternatively, they might approve some proposals conditionally, i.e., on the condition that certain changes are made, such as removing an airstream trailer from a proposed logo or flag. Instead, they send it plodding back down the decision staircase, deferring any action for another 6 months. Deferral without dialogue or help can be seen as a rejection of the proposal, and perhaps that is the intended message.

But in any event, being a member of an RV club in this day and age should not be an exercise is saintly endurance. If the IBT retains its leisurely pace for acting on ordinary, run of the mill club business -- unit flag approval, new unit charters -- deferring positive grow inducing proposals six months at a time, they will soon discover more and more people will have taken Jim Franklin's advice.

New WBCCI communication channels have been opened but appear to be ignored by our leaders. Many of us here also post comments, suggestions and reactions on the WBCCI's two year old public forum at at www.wbcci.org. But there has been very little feedback from any Regional or National officers on that Club forum, including any contrary viewpoints or disagreement on the merits. Is anyone from above listening, or even lurking?
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