Wisconsin in 2007?

Wisconsin in 2007?

Joined: September 9th, 2005, 1:00 pm

September 9th, 2005, 1:08 pm #1

So the conventioneers picked Wisconsin for 2007. Is it correct that the hall they're looking at only holds 275 people? What were they thinking? Three out of the last five conventions had more people than that. I guess it doesn't matter to the Don Holmeses of this club. They sit at the head table in the main room no matter what, while us peons sit in a side room, up a flight of stairs, and have to watch on TV.

Next time you pick a convention site, maybe the people who suggest it (that's you Don) should do a little more than make a few phone calls.
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

September 10th, 2005, 11:09 am #2

I'm suprised at the vehemance and tone of this message.

There's no conspiracies in the club. At worst there are honest mistakes.

From what I saw (and from the poll I took of the general membership meeting) everybody had a magical convention.

There were indeed mistakes made at the convention but there was no conspiracy to commit them. In the past it was difficult to find convention organizer and so the policy was to give the convention organizers a free hand.

We did note the comments about lack of seating in the main room which we had been unaware of until relatively late in the game. We also noted the comments about about Labor Day -- but as was proved at the convention and proved over and over again in independent conversations -- Labor Day is not a huge event in the White Mountains as many people have taken their kids back to school and so there is usually many vacancies there.

The board did decide to have a more hands on oversight of the conventions. Arch convention organizer Nikki Hemphill will act as official Presidential appointed liaison with the organizer to make sure the conventions are following common sense guidelines.

The choice of Wisconsin came on a CLOSE vote from the membership. It was not Don Holmes that sold it. It was Jim Sutton! Once you get the membership chanting "Cheese" it's hard to stop a run away bandwagon. Further votes were counted from the upstairs. The vote was not close enough though that even if there was a snafu with the upstairs votes that it would have changed the outcome.

Both the presentations for Wisconsin and Ohio emphasized facilities and practical real world aspects of holding a convention. That's definitely a sign that we're entering the real world.

If you feel that strongly and passionately about all this, then you should run for the board.

This is only a hobby and we're only volunteers.
Last edited by dipper on September 11th, 2005, 2:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: September 9th, 2005, 1:00 pm

September 12th, 2005, 1:27 pm #3

Of course people were happy at the convention. It's always nice to see your highpointing friends, but the facts remain the facts. The convention site was too far away from the mountain, the facilities were quite lackluster for an alleged "resort," the banquet set-up was absurd (the only thing further away from the seating than the food was the mountain from the resort), the bar prices were more appropriate for the big city than some back-water "resort" (and I don't even drink), the traffic in the Konways was worse than rush hour in the big city, I could go on, but I don't want to sound so "vehement."

I appreciate your suggestion that I run for the board, but I don't think one vote can make a difference, unless of course, you're Don Holmes. I'd rather offer my thoughts from the outside lookin' in.
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Joined: May 14th, 2005, 4:39 pm

September 12th, 2005, 2:34 pm #4


Dick,

I assume that you'll volunteer next year to put together a convention for 2008, since you have so many ideas of how it should be done.

To all the people who worked so hard as VOLUNTEERS to put together this 2005 convention:

I was very pleased with how efficiently the staff made sure all 300+ of us got freshly-prepared food.  Since Charlie & I seem to have taken over the dubious honor of always sitting at a table that gets called last or 2nd to last (sorry, Craig!), we were very pleasantly surprised to find fresh and plentiful supplies of all the side dishes, plus receive main dishes that were hot and not dried out from sitting on a steam table for an hour and a half!  Plus, even the last table got to eat only about 35-40 minutes after the first table was called -- that's easily half the time of previous conventions.

True, the hall wasn't the luxurious place I imagined from seeing the Purity Springs brochures, but it worked just fine.  We stayed in North Conway, and were back and forth to the convention hall quite a few times and didn't find the traffic to be a problem at all.

Thanks to everyone for all your incredibly hard work and for putting together what turned out to be the best-attended convention in club history!!!!


Diane Winger

www.HighpointAdventures.com
NEW: www.Colorado-for-Free.com
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

September 12th, 2005, 4:15 pm #5

Of course people were happy at the convention. It's always nice to see your highpointing friends, but the facts remain the facts. The convention site was too far away from the mountain, the facilities were quite lackluster for an alleged "resort," the banquet set-up was absurd (the only thing further away from the seating than the food was the mountain from the resort), the bar prices were more appropriate for the big city than some back-water "resort" (and I don't even drink), the traffic in the Konways was worse than rush hour in the big city, I could go on, but I don't want to sound so "vehement."

I appreciate your suggestion that I run for the board, but I don't think one vote can make a difference, unless of course, you're Don Holmes. I'd rather offer my thoughts from the outside lookin' in.
Richard:
Every comment regarding the convention you made is valid. If we compared lists I probably could easily top yours with the list of mistakes.

However, the convention still came off as yet another magical convention. Highpointers make their own magic at conventions. The organizers provided the venue. And as Diane noted Purity did a great job of food service which has been the achilles heel of most conventions. I suspect that most people would probably paid twice the price for the convention. Further, transportation to and from the convention easily eclipsed the convention cost (reports of $70/tank for gas were reported frequently).

Still, this convention will probably result in more changes in how the conventions are handled than any other convention in the past. There is going to be a more hands on approach to make sure the conventions are in accord with common sense and club culture.

Rather than giving the organizers carte blanche, a board member (e.g., arch convention organizer Nikki Hemphill) will interface just to make sure everything is on track.

The presentation by Jim Sutton for Wisconsin and the Urbanski brothers for Ohio clearly showed real world concerns about meeting and housing facilities. There is now a push for "if you nominate it, you should organize it." In the past folks tended to "vote their favorite states."

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Joined: January 20th, 2004, 5:18 am

September 12th, 2005, 4:33 pm #6

Of course people were happy at the convention. It's always nice to see your highpointing friends, but the facts remain the facts. The convention site was too far away from the mountain, the facilities were quite lackluster for an alleged "resort," the banquet set-up was absurd (the only thing further away from the seating than the food was the mountain from the resort), the bar prices were more appropriate for the big city than some back-water "resort" (and I don't even drink), the traffic in the Konways was worse than rush hour in the big city, I could go on, but I don't want to sound so "vehement."

I appreciate your suggestion that I run for the board, but I don't think one vote can make a difference, unless of course, you're Don Holmes. I'd rather offer my thoughts from the outside lookin' in.
I wasn't at Purity Springs and I don't have anything to add to that debate ... BUT Don Homes' "Highpoints of the United States" has travelled around the country with me. It is ragged and tattered and I have yet to encounter a single mistake. As far as I'm concerned, he IS the Highpointers Club. Just had to get that off my chest. Hike on.
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

September 12th, 2005, 4:41 pm #7

I had more lengthy geeky defense of Don. But Mark said it better.
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Joined: March 2nd, 2004, 2:26 pm

September 12th, 2005, 5:23 pm #8

So the conventioneers picked Wisconsin for 2007. Is it correct that the hall they're looking at only holds 275 people? What were they thinking? Three out of the last five conventions had more people than that. I guess it doesn't matter to the Don Holmeses of this club. They sit at the head table in the main room no matter what, while us peons sit in a side room, up a flight of stairs, and have to watch on TV.

Next time you pick a convention site, maybe the people who suggest it (that's you Don) should do a little more than make a few phone calls.
Dick,

I see where you're coming from. I was one of those who was delegated to the "other room." Your criticisms are wll taken. Although the convention was not perfect, at least Thom and Stevo took the time and energy to put on a convention. It's not an easy task to coordinate an event of that size. The Wisconsin organizers saw the shortcomings of the NH convention and I'm sure they will make Wisconsin a great convention.

As one of the proponents of Ohio in 2007, it looks like the Wisconsin people have also done their homework. I have already pledged my full support and look forward to working with them over the next few years. After all, this club is about the people, the highpointers. They are the ones who make the conventions what they are.

Thank you for your criticisms. It is only by this type of self-analysis that we can continue to have better conventions each year. Look forward to seeing you in NC in 2006. I'll be there and I hope you will, too.

Steve Urbanski

steve urbanski
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Joined: September 9th, 2005, 1:00 pm

September 13th, 2005, 12:02 am #9

Dick,

I assume that you'll volunteer next year to put together a convention for 2008, since you have so many ideas of how it should be done.

To all the people who worked so hard as VOLUNTEERS to put together this 2005 convention:

I was very pleased with how efficiently the staff made sure all 300+ of us got freshly-prepared food.  Since Charlie & I seem to have taken over the dubious honor of always sitting at a table that gets called last or 2nd to last (sorry, Craig!), we were very pleasantly surprised to find fresh and plentiful supplies of all the side dishes, plus receive main dishes that were hot and not dried out from sitting on a steam table for an hour and a half!  Plus, even the last table got to eat only about 35-40 minutes after the first table was called -- that's easily half the time of previous conventions.

True, the hall wasn't the luxurious place I imagined from seeing the Purity Springs brochures, but it worked just fine.  We stayed in North Conway, and were back and forth to the convention hall quite a few times and didn't find the traffic to be a problem at all.

Thanks to everyone for all your incredibly hard work and for putting together what turned out to be the best-attended convention in club history!!!!


Diane Winger

www.HighpointAdventures.com
NEW: www.Colorado-for-Free.com
Diane,

I'm sorry if my criticism sounded a bit harsh, they're only meant to make the club better. I guess I'm better at offering constructive criticism than doing constructive work. I wouldn't know where to begin to start a convention, .... but then again.... I wouldn't pick a run-down "resort" 40 miles from the mountain, when there are many more suitable locations closer to the mountain.

By no means do I take away from those who donated their precious time to help out with the convention. To those people, my hiking/climbing hat is off. You all did a great job with what you had. My gripe is with the leadership for not flagging this debacle sooner. For a while there I was begining to think Don Rumsfeld, not Don Holmes was runnin this club. I didn't have to sit in that upstairs room, but I feel sorry for those who did. They might have well just stayed home and watched Don Holmes on TV read off name after name after name after name while they were eating dinner in their own homes.

Thanks for your insights.

Dick

P.S. And, in all seriousness I really enjoy your (and Charlie's) guidebook. I probably wouldn't have found half my highpoints if I didn't have that.
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Joined: January 21st, 2004, 3:15 pm

September 14th, 2005, 6:14 pm #10

Criticsm alone doesn't make the Club better. Offering solutions and offering your time is what's needed.

It's too bad that readers of this Forum in years to come will see complaints (and this after all the hours of volunteered time). It's sort of like sitting around a campfire with good friends and complaining about the cold or the ants or the substandard food. The NH convention was great because the people were great. So let it be written.

Dick, send me a thoughtful list of complaints with some ideas about improving, and I'll work with Nikki to ensure that future hosts can try to steer clear of problems. We're assembling a notebook of Tips for Hosts.

- from one volunteer to another, John M.
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