Greetings Sports Fans!
2013 was a banner year for us with 116 Meetups, and 575 New Members. We took two Meetup trips to Hawaii and one to Sin City, aka Vegas! And we took our annual pilgrimage to Walla Walla...to watch the balloons - yeah right ;) More on this later. We also had two repositioning cruises; both on Holland America, one from Vancouver, BC to Seattle and the other Seattle to Vancouver, BC. More on this one as well.
I want to take this opportunity to highlight our Organizers, whom spend endless hours planning and orchestrating these Meetups: Kristi, Ute, Cindy, Nellie, Roger, Johnny, Angelo, Kenan, Doug and Jessi Martin (who is under training as an Event Organizer). Kristi, Ute and Cindy out shinned with hosting the most Meetups for 2013.
Of particular mention: Kristi's New Member Meetup, which is the most successful Meetup that happens every month. These Meetups are design to center on the New Member. Ute and Kenan, took us to a new level by moving us away from our traditional Christmas Party at Thea's Landing to Christmas Party afloat on the Spirit of 76. Look for that event again for the Summer Solstice. Cindy's ride the Duck in Seattle, has to be hands down the most non-stop laughing experience EVER!!! Look for that one again!
Honorable mention goes to Joni, Cathy, Gretchen for stepping up to the plate and volunteering to host events. Thank you Ladies!
When you have the opportunity at the next Meetup you attend, please take a moment to thank the Organizers I mentioned above, they deserve an Atta- Boy & Atta-Girl, and I am sure if you buy them a drink, they will not turn you down :) Our success is due to these Organizers and our great members.
On that note, while we are not the largest group in the Puget Sound...we are the fastest growing. When we hit 2000 members, look for a big celebration and a surprise ;)
Meetups that are in planning for this year include a sabbatical from Walla Walla Balloon Fest to go to Lake Chelan winery tours; more repositioning MU's this time in addition to a local one; adding one from either San Diego or San Fran to Seattle; count on the Duck ride to be back.
That said, time for the admin side of the Address
- TWDHH funds: aside from the $72 every six months I have to pay to Meetup to maintain the site, all membership dues goes right back to the group; either to pay for decorations, supplies or to pay the extras if the end of the event bill is larger then what was expected. The only exception to this was the bottles of wine I bought for the Organizers, my way of saying thanks for your hard work. I paid out of my own pocket for them.
- RSVP's: this past year we averaged 25-35% no-show on RSVPs that were posted as going. That is too HIGH! Venues are not going to continue to give us extras when we fall short of how many we say are going. I realize that not everyone has smart phones that keeps close touch on new events posted at a moments notice; and I realize folks are busy; and I realize things can change at the 11th hour - but not on a constant basis! If you RSVP to a Meetup, and your plans change, please change your RSVP. Now here is the kicker, the Cardinal Sin of all No-Shows is to No-Show at a limited attendance Meetup that has a waiting list; and the No-Show results in a member on the wait list not being able to attend the Meetup when there is a spot available. I have requested my Organizers to track No-Shows, particular those of limited venues. A 3 time No-Show to a limited venue gains you a Ba-bye from TWDHH. There are Meetup groups in Seattle
that have a one no show you are out rule. I am giving you some leeway.
- Profile pictures: there are several members in the group that do not have a profile picture. The most often reason stated for not having a profile picture is because of personal Security - Security is a two way street. It is my responsibility for the security of the group. If we can't identify who is coming to an event, that puts us in a dilemma. That said, in the next two weeks I would like those who do not have a profile picture, please establish a profile picture of yourself. After that time, it is up to the Organizer whether they will admit to a Meetup someone who does not have a profile picture. I hope you understand.
Ok Sports Fans...that be enough for this address :) See you at a Meetup soon :)
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