|Sent on:||Wednesday, January 30, 2013 4:00 PM|
Our 2013 camping season is fast approaching and spring fever is setting in!! I am taking this opportunity to re-send a post from our forum page that Jennifer and I submitted last year. We have many new members and we think this very important information regarding our Meetup bears repeating. We greatly appreciate all of your suggestions for locations on hiking and camping. Please keep them coming. In addition, we greatly appreciate all of you who attend events, provide entertainment, and enjoy their weekends and free time with us. We continually receive many questions regarding our upcoming planned events. The purpose of this email is to clarify some of our Meetup choices and practices.
All group campsites have a maximum amount of people per site allowed by the DNR. In addition, our Spring and Fall camping trips will intentionally have small groups so there is ample room around the campfire in the evenings for everyone to keep warm. Conversely, Summer trips will have more spaces available, but note that when we allow more campers to participate, the site fees increase so the cost of these trips will be higher.
For those of you that have camped with us in the past, you know that Melissa goes above and beyond to provide a gourmet catered meal pre-prepped by her that then is later completed on site with the assistance of the AOs. As a result of more people attending for certain trips, the food provided will be much simpler fare. In those cases, we may be providing more of the basics like hot dogs, bratwursts, hamburgers, or bagels for breakfast. In addition, campers may be asked to provide their own side items or bring their own food for more certain meals.
There will always be an Organizer and 4 to 5 Assistant Organizers per trip. Assistant Organizers usually haul equipment, assist with cooking, arrange outdoor activities, etc and are essential to a well run camping trip. This is why you will often see certain people on many of the trips.
There is a calendar on the meetup site that specifically tells you to "Save the Date" for camping trips. Based on those dates we will open all future pre-planned meetup trips for RSVPs 60 days in advance. A few days before the meetup is posted, a reminder will be sent so you know it is coming. Some of you may have access to the meetup site at work and/or on your phone to RSVP while others do not. With an agreement that we will always post pre-planned trips 60 days in advance, it is up to you to make alternate plans to have someone finalize the RSVP for you if you are unable to get to the site for the 60-day advance posting.
The reason the meetups fill up fast is because word has gotten around that this meetup has well executed trips to great locations with lots of fun activities - not to mention the amazing members!
Prepay events do not allow for an automatic waitlist so we will always use the "Post a comment" section for you to add your name to the "waitlist". Do not RSVP "No" with a comment to be on the waitlist - use the "Post a comment" field. If you are added to the trip from the waitlist, you will be notified via email. You will have 48 hours to make a payment by using the "Change RSVP". You will stay a "Yes" but the system will ask for your payment. If you do not make a payment within 48 hours or email the Organizer of the event with an alternate plan for payment, you will be dropped and we will move to the next name on the waitlist.
This group is not your typical camping meetup. We try very hard to find a happy balance between structured event planning and personal free time on our trips. We plan the trips with great care and attention and it is all done on a voluntary basis. The organizers of this group each have very busy lives and do this out of a love for the outdoors and community. We appreciate all the cooperation, support and commitment to group practices by our members. We are always open to suggestions but like any group with a leadership team, we have to choose what works for the majority and will ultimately decide the "rules and practices" for the group. If you are not satisfied with how things are going, we hope you will make suggestions and give us a chance to address your concerns. If you continue to have issues with the way this group operates, you are under no obligation to remain a member. Personal choice based on your experiences and preferences is the beauty of an open forum like Meetup.
If you have any questions in regards to the above. Please feel free to send a note to Jennifer or me.
Jennifer H and Melissa R