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Allowing Towables Vote At Indianapolis In July

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Mike,

It seems what you are describing would be a local gathering which could be handled by regional clubs. I don't think you would have many people outside of your area wanting to travel 500+ miles to see a regional sporting event. Most of us would much rather spend the time and money to see our own teams. That being said, perhaps FMCA needs to promote more mini local events and publish the ones that are currently held. One issue against the weekends is that many of us have them planned out far in advanced and getting a group together at a campground on weekends might be hard due to limited site availablity.

The real issue for FMCA is to decide who is its target audience, trying to be for everyone usually means not doing the best job for anyone. What you said is very true, what you like and what someone else likes will often be different. Compromise to a limited point is good but then it becomes not satisfactory for all.

Roland

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Mike, you and I could talk for hours! We are both in our 40's (kids in school) and by the way...you had me at BBQ and Beer, that's typical weekend camping trip for us in the early evening after a day spent exploring the local area. Smoker is going strong, other campers are lurking trying to figure out what I'm cooking as the smoke smells so good. I'm passing out beers like a bartender talking RV stuff, kids are off meeting other kids probably all with their phones in their faces :blink:. I believe you said it all above, some alterations are needed to attract younger motorhome owners. I believe there is a way and to be able to do while walking the line. I'm here for the magazine and the forum, forum is free but I feel if I don't contribute it might go away  plus I don't believe in mooching. I also like the experience the FMCA crowd has to offer, I can sit and chat with the experienced people for hours and get great places to go and places to avoid. One thing in life training cannot replace is experience.

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Mike,

Kind off a big stretch between a College Ball Game and a FMCA Rally! :blink:  FMCA or GS has got to cater to a across the board diversified membership!  Your a Cajun and I presume you Graduated from LSU...There are 49 other States out there and they all feel the same about their University's!  This is FMCA, we have Regions and Chapters, we are a Motor Home Club, not a Sports club!  We try hard to not cater to any age group in regards to Music or Entertainment .  Quilting, Crafts and Ice Cream Socials?  Yes.  We got that !  Sorry, but we don't have and hope we never will have, the sharing of specialized Alcoholic Drinks....not a good example for children! :angry::wacko:

Carl   

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fagnaml, I agree with much of what you  said (tailgatting is very popular here in Louisiana), sounds good other than the fact that I am just under 50  and have no interest in football.    I think such venues could benefit from an FMCA recruiting effort, if only there were benefits to attract younger people.  As to the local / regional / national event issue, this is part of the problem, younger people simply do not have the free time to travel to an event that is a thousand miles away from home.     I feel I am on the cusp of seeing both sides of the issue, I am just under 50,  semi-retired for the last 2 years, have a  son about to graduate college,  my wife still works full time.

 

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What benefits would younger (35-45) people value that FMCA could provide? Meetings and education are good for some but I would venture that most in this age group would rather have family events. I doubt that most in this age group are interested in maintaining their own coach and many of them have newer coaches. I still think that FMCA needs a greater effort to attract the 55 and above crowd, there are far to many people out there in this age group who have no idea what FMCA is or what it provides. Younger members should certainly be encouraged but unless there is a total makeover of FMCA I don't see them as the savior.

Roland

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I'll chime in here. My other posts went away with the lost thread.

I am 64, I have been a MH Owner for 10 years and a member of FMCA as long. Prior I sent 2o years sailing, 10 of which I lived on my boat, before that I tent camped, back-packed and truck camped. Last year at 63 years of age I attended my first FMCA or any other Rally. We did join a chapter although we have never made a rally, gathering or other meet. Seems they were almost always on dates where we were either already involved or they were on weekends.  Also frankly they seemed like they were mostly 'old folks'. Our daughter turned 20 this year so we have always looked for things that she would or could be a part of. A group of people where at 60 I'd be young just didn't seem good so we spent time going to different CGs and touring when we had time. Going to a CG where we'd do what we were already doing just didn't seem like it would be worth the extra costs or days off. We really need to think about what we can offer to people. What we have is good although I admit, our first rally will likely be unique, we traded in our previous MH and drove a new Tiffin home. Not something we are likely to repeat anytime soon if ever. This year we'll be attending both a Tiffin Rally and the Indy Rally. Hopefully we'll get a better handle on what to expect and maybe get a little socializing in.
 

Frankly I am going for seminars and gadgets. We like museums, flea markets, caverns, historic towns, and the like. three days of pickle ball is not going to attract a lot of younger people. We need to look at areas and chapters to attract younger people. A three day rally at a location near to home, 1-3 hours maximum where there is potentially a group of somewhat like minded people is what may work to attract more people. As an example, I like to shoot. I like Sporting Clays, Trap, 3-Gun, and action pistol. Not for everyone for sure. I'd love to go to a rally where we had a couple rounds of Sporting Clays. I am sure there are members that would also like this, just as I am sure there are many that would love a Texas Hold'em tournament, or a bike tour or fly fishing. We need to think of reasons besides camping that people have a MH and camp for.

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6 hours ago, fagnaml said:

Oops.  Hit the "submit reply" button too soon as another thought crossed my mind.  At an LSU football tailgating weekend there are upwards of 450 motorhomes with 50 fifth-wheel and some travel trailer "RV-ers" gathering for a three day fun filled event (especially if LSU wins the game!).  All of these RV'ers are crammed into "boon docking" spots barely wide-enough for everyone to put their slides out.  Generators run 24/7 during the weekend and no one cares.  The "men" usually vacation on Friday's so they can arrive in Baton Rouge by noon and set-up their motorhomes.  They often meet their wives and kids during the early evening at their favorite Baton Rouge Restaurants or have supper ready when mom and kids arrive.

On Saturday, bacon is frying during the mornings, BBQs are a smokin' all day long and no one cares about the smoke while enjoying the aromas.   Kids throw footballs, ride their bikes, chase each other and are loud as any kid is playing with friends.   The Dad's and Grandpa's (like me) talk football, talk about their motorhomes and set-ups, sample each other's cuisine, drink each other's beer especially our own home brews.   The Mom's and Grandma's talk kids and grandkids (and probably husbands), drink each other's frozen beverages and sample each other's cuisine.  Everyone enjoys ladder golf, bean bag corn-hole game, and yard darts.

Sunday morning is spent talking about the game while packing the motorhome, most attend church for an hour, then start their journeys home around noon.

This is the type of weekend "rally" that that I don't see offered by FMCA or its Chapters for younger motorhome owners and their families.

A key data point about LSU football weekends is the vast majority of the 450 motorhomes are owned by folks under the age of 60.  Maybe 10% of the motorhomes have FMCA member "ovals" on their rear ladders (I'm one of the 10%).  When I ask the 90% why they are not a member of FMCA the response is "FMCA is for retirees and snow birds and not for me" and "FMCA doesn't give me the same benefits as Good Sam Club".

 A couple years ago fmca started an Under 60 Task Force. This "Task Force" (over 500 members) evolved into the ENERERGIZED Steering Committee. We organize some extra stuff for the kids at the rallys and we have social activities that interest the young at heart (regardless of age). On occasion we have specialized drinks and BBQ;)

If you make a National Rally check the box "Request U60 Information/Energized info" and you will be added to the email list of our activities.

In addition to the ENERGIZED Events for all.... we also host and organize fun stuff for the U60 crowd too. 

For Indy---we are looking at a brew bus tour  (they pick you up), farmers market and a pub cycle for our off site events--- in addition to our social gatherings, KIDZ Meet n Greet and DOGZ on Tour on site.  Saturday's entertainment is a Cirque d Solei type show so that should be fun 

If you'd like to get added to the email list (we only send out emails in advance of the National rallys (2 per year) and communicate with those at the rallys once they begin ) email Kathy Anderson at KAnderson@FMCA.com  Kathy will add you to our mailing list  

IMG_8826.JPG

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I think the fact that the age for the "youth group" being set at under 60 just illustrates the issue that the organization is facing.  Sure it may reach out to people in my age (late 40's) range, sure I enjoy museums, farmers markets, good food, my wife even dragged me to a cirque du soleil event last year and I sort of enjoyed it.  However it leaves out those 30 somethings (+/- 10 years) that tend to enjoy higher levels of activity, things like horse back riding, rafting, off roading, hiking, etc.  Heck, my wife and I even still enjoy some of the low impact varieties of the above, last summer we took a half day guided float trip down a river in Wyoming, and the year before we did a tour through an underground water filled cavern in the Yucatan.

As to younger people not doing their own maintenance work, there is a big do it yourself movement going on in the country, much of it is fueled by the internet, with step by step how to videos available on almost any topic on youtube.  Perhaps they have less interest in changing oil or engine maintenance, but may have more interest in installing new window blinds, or refinishing the cabinet work in their 15 year old motorhome so it does not look so "dated".  I myself have don't 90% of the maintenance on my 15 year old motorhome since buying it last November, including installing new shock absorbers, LED headlights, .....

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Isaaac1, Your comment about activities is I believe right on target.  I listed a few things I like, but I'd add in a heck of a lot more. To attract young and younger thinking members we need to have younger activities. Rafting, tubing, bike rides, horseback riding and many other activities could be arranged. It might be difficult at the National level, but regional and state level should be manageable. Hey we just bought two new mountain bikes yesterday! Not going to attack a razorback downhill ridge ride, but a nice ride along an old railbed, tow path sign us up. 

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Send your thought and concerns to you regional VP.  A lot easier than trying to throw it all into the National arena!  Also, if your not with a chapter, pick one and let your voice and opinion be heard...Change takes time, not going to happen overnight and it won't happen at all if you just sit around and do nothing! 

I'm involved with 3 international fraternal  and 1 domestic Clubs, FMCA, Six State South Central Region and 4 Chapters.  I already know, what's going thru your mind, but I also did it when I was working!

Carl

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I don't believe that input from the membership makes any difference at all to the FMCA operations just like the stock holder votes don't make any difference when the stockholders do not have controlling interest.  FMCA will do what they believe to be necessary to continue to be able to pay the bills and pay the employees (owners).  This is not a bad thing as many businesses have been forced to re-invent themselves to survive.  If FMCA believe that the only way to survive is to completely re-invent themselves then that will be the vote when it's time to make the vote no matter what the membership believes.  Again, not to be a negative statement but rather a reasonable expectation of any business trying to keep from going the way of the Dodo bird.

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It seems to me that the younger members needs could be best met by local chapters or groups. A 3 day weekend doesn't allow for any significant travel if activities like being proposed are undertaken. Also with fewer people in attendance perhaps better alignment on what activities are wanted would occur.

From personal experiences when I was in my 30's and early 40's  our vacations were centered around our children and family things. As we grew older and the kids were out on their own my wife and I traveled but did not participate in structured trips preferring to do our own thing. Now in our late 60's once again the motor home is our travel mode and we enjoy meeting new friends. We value FMCA for this forum, the magazine and the other current benefits. For others the social activities might be important. My point is that we all have different ideas about what we like and do, trying to fit all of us in one mold doesn't work.

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I agree that this would be well addressed at the local and regional levels, however some national coordination would likely make it work better, particularly when it comes to distribution of information and structuring, otherwise it turns into nothing more than another special interest chapter.

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I think that is where the growth will come from is local chapters. I see FMCA as the parent/ umbrella organization and the local clubs/chapters as the place where the rubber meets the road, literally.  I belong to several chapters and that is where you have the opportunity to recruit new members plan activities the members are interested in doing. This is where you attract new members and would be perfect for people who are working like Jo and Keon are planning. Once you get 10-12 in a group you can start getting better discounts during a rally. Most campgrounds have a minimum number before you can use the clubhouse/meeting house. But that is OK when the group is small you can still have a good time. Don't be afraid to talk to the other people in the campground. I know you can't walk by when the RRR group is in camp without someone inviting you to happy hour. 

The main point I am trying to make is that Jo and Kenon know what they want to do and what time they have to do it much better than the people in the offices at FMCA.

Bill

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On 5/13/2017 at 6:42 PM, BillAdams said:

FMCA will do what they believe to be necessary to continue to be able to pay the bills and pay the employees (owners). 

I don't understand your comment. Do you think that the employees of FMCA own FMCA? If not, then who do you think "owns" FMCA?

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On our way to Indy some of us are stopping at Turkey Run State Park for a few days of tubing and canoeing.  Great park!!!  One thing FMCA could do better is to announce the rally dates at least 14 months in advance so people can plan on hitting some other venues on the way.  Many of these state parks are booked well in advance...especially in the summer.

 

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Jeff,  Hi.

Just call the office and you can get that info on INTO and National well in advance!   As long as you have been doing your FMCA thing, I would have thought that you would know more than me! :) 

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Carl,

today most seek that type of info on electronic sources and prefer that over phone calls. also the general membership probably does not know that you could call the main office for that. if we are honest many do their info seeking at what would not be considered normal business hours. anything the association can do to make access easier will aid our growth.

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