Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!
Ummm, asking 3 groups of rally goers @ Johnson City about going to the rally appears to be missing the input from all the members that didn't go to the rally. If you want to know why attendance is down ask the members that don't go, why not. Don't ask the ones that are already there.
Let's all keep in mind that there is a VAST difference between asking a bunch of people a question and getting an answer and a scientific survey based on statistical samples.
If you asked 50 people on Friday if they liked the heat you're going to find out only one thing. That it was stinkin' hot Friday. Putting a poll up here on the forums will be statistically insignificant because you're only polling SOME of those who frequent the forum. There were by all accounts something like 7300 people in attendance at some point over the weekend. Of those 7300 that came and went there are a couple dozen who are here complaining about the rally date. Is that a statistically significant sample? Don't forget that of those posting in the threads many are also saying that they still had a good time despite the heat and it wont prevent them from going again. Is THAT a statistically significant sample?
According to those here and folks I talked to at the rally, the Lima Ohio rally was also a HOT HOT one. Yet, in 2009 when the MOA DID do a scientific poll of it's membership the majority indicated that they didn't want the mid-July date changed.
If it were as simple as asking a bunch of people a question and getting an answer everyone would do it and there would be no Zogby or Rasmussen.
Nik #140220 - '88 K75C | '96 R1100RS | '77 R100RS | '06 DL650
'01 525iT (oOO=00=OOo)
Helmets don't save lives but loud pipes do?
For all of those who wish a fall or spring rally why not show the MOA your support for the regional and local charter club rallies that already have events in the season that you like? Why doesn't the GA Mtn. Rally have over 2K in attendance? Perfect time of the year, great location, good amount of vendors, fantastic roads. Where is everybody? Why doesn't the Black Diamond Beemers Rally get 1000 people? Just as good as the GMR. Four Winds is another, where is everyone? These rallies and many many many more have to sweat it out in the the hopes they can at least break even. If there's a forecast of rain ( I just mean a forecast, not actual rain) attendance numbers plummet. These events are cheaper, they require less time off from work, and there in your neck of the woods, plus their in the season that so many here seem to want.
Prove it to the MOA and to those of us who do not want to change the date of the national. Until these spring and fall rallies are so swamped with attendees I see no reason what so ever to change the date of the national.
There's no doubt that weather plays a role in any outdoor event and if we had a cooler but a very rainy forecast I would have expected about the same attendance figures.
So, thinking about this situation, perhaps its not so bad that ~2,500 members didn't show up for the Bloomsburg rally. Really, the club has the money, so who cares if members show up. There may be potential ways to cancel some items in the budget for the rally last minute and the MOA may even realize a larger profit then if they had come.
So just saying, perhaps the goal should be to get as many members to purchase pre-rally tickets, then hope for conditions that keep them away. After all, as some have stated, the MOA needs this rally to be profitable so the club doesn't go under. Best way to that end, sell pre-rally, and try to minimize cost by keeping them away.
I think we can see that this will greatly skew the results and not allow for a true representation of sentiment among the membership.
Unless you want to have a biased survey, allowing self selection isn't the right way to identify the sample set. In order to be completely unbiased, surveys require a truly random selection of respondents. It has nothing to do with trying to obtain some pre-determined answer.
When I was president, we had the rally timing discussion every single year and over the 5 years I was president, it probably involved about 30 people, some of whom were brand new to the board and others that had been around a while. Every year, we'd go round and round about timing and, even after all those conversations, we never really found a complelling reason to move the rally.
If you want to talk with the board about it, there's an Events Committee that deals with the rally, weekend getaways and other items. Look either on the site or in ON for how to contact them.
I hope I've made some sense with regard to surveys, sampling and statistical validation of the results.
Marin County, CA
Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.
The objective of the rally is, indeed to turn a profit, but pre-rally budgeting tries to put as much money as possible back into the event itself. That's how we get good bands, keep beer costs down and have managed to keep the cost of the rally to what, $42? This isn't a mercenary objective, but a desire to stage a way for members to get together with their bikes and their friends and have a good time.
Much of the club's income comes from advertising sales and membership fees, not from the rally alone. Tom Buttars has published some excellent pieces in ON about how the club finances work.
Marin County, CA
Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.
the problem with surveys is you can always get the results you want. conduct a survey at Bloomsburg or shortly after Bloomsburg and i bet the majority would want the dates changed due to the extreme heat. conduct that same survey after a beautiful, low humidity 80 degree weekend in July and i bet the results favor keeping the rally dates the same. conduct the same survey again after a weekend of torrential rain in the spring and i bet the majority want the rally changed to summer or fall. so you can survey a sampling of MOA members at any given rally and get the results you want based solely on what the weather was like during that event.
don't ask the vendors when they want the rally, they only have there own best interest in mind, what works for there schedule, or for there on hand inventory. as i have said in a previous post, the vendors will come no matter what time the rally is held. yes, it might take some rearranging of some scheduling conflicts at first but trust me, no vendor is going to miss a major event like the MOA national because the dates have changed. there is too much money to be made for them to stay away.
just like voting for our elected officials why can't the board use ballots in the ON mag, and make voting via the website possible and make a decision based on those results. if that system is good enough to elect the MOA officials then why can't it work to see if the membership wants a change in rally dates.
If a Spring/Fall local rally is pulling in huge numbers, wouldn't it be bad policy to compete with them? Say the National was moved to "their" weekend and their numbers suffered. Who are they going to blame? I don't think the Mother Club really wants to piss off a successful franchise or their supporters.
There is no "perfect" location or month to hold an event that draws venders and members from all over the country. Missing the National is a personal choice. Its up to us whether we are willing to do what it takes to go. Having said that, I see a great benefit to changing the month from year to year. The numbers would probably be pretty close to current attendance regardless of when it was held; however there may be a lot of new faces since some who can never make a July rally might attend.
We will never please everybody.