Has the final attendance been tallied?
Has the final attendance been tallied?
Not official but somewhere over 5200 of the happiest rally goers ever.
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So down almost 25% from the 6700 at last year's rally. I wonder if the 10,000 member attendances from the past will ever be repeated?
Hope everyone had a safe and satisfying time.
Well, you've got at least two people going next year. Got my rooms booked and both my wife and I plan on volunteering. MOA really impressed us and we want to be a part of the next rally. But no chair positions, at least not in 2013.
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Just my opinion but when you hold a rally in the middle of July in one of the hottest parts of the country you should expect the attendance to be down. This trend will continue as long as the MOA holds there national rally at one of the hottest times of the year. I know this subject has been beaten to death but no one should be surprised at the turn out. The national rally should not be a survival test and until the powers that be realize that, you will never see record setting attendance.
That number probably isn't bad considering where the rally was held. I imagine the majority of the rally goers were from that general neck of the woods and are used to an environment that would seem like hell on earth to most nor-westerners. Nothing wrong with that because the idea of holding the rally in the four regions of the country gives all the opportunity to attend a national rally. Next years event will no doubt attract much larger numbers. Too bad the powers that be can't select different times of the year to favor more desirable conditions in different parts of the country like maybe fall in New England for example. Oh, and why not include Canada for rally location? After all it is an "international" event, no?
I personally favor September but not if we want younger riders - less than 50 or so. Their kids are in school and they won't come. And probably won't join. I think the board should try it. But they will weigh the pros (lots) and cons (lots) and decide. Last time I was convinced they were all screwed up I got myself elected to the Board, and then President. But now I think they are doing a good job and don't want to run for anything.
I think we should go back to Canada - but then folks with felonies or DUIs can't get in. Sorry - Canada 2014 for me!!
Where was the record attendance rally held? Was it Burlington Vermont as I was thinking that one was over 9000?
I believe that most who do not come to the rally for reasons of distance/weather/etc. are the people who would not come no matter where you did it or when you planned it. I think most just get their thrills complaining.
I had a great time and consider the weather to have been outstanding. The storm I hit on the NC/VA border coming back on Sunday is a different matter all together.
BTW, I got chilled riding back.
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Whether or not we choose to believe all the propaganda, the weather certainly does seem to be getting more extreme. At a minimum some consideration should be given to these extremes. I did attend, rode the Saddlesore out on Wednesday in the tripple digit heat and rode another 1K straight home yesterday and will admit I stayed in A/C space off-site which takes away from the whole experience, that and the absence of Guinness on-site.
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First the location is going to have a huge role in attendance, perhaps even more than the weather.
As Co-Chair of the Vermont rally (well over 9k IIRC) I'd love to say we came up with a magic formula but we didn't.
It was the perfect conditions to break a record. As an aside even in VT we had a 90 degree day.
The economy had yet to crash.
Within 500 miles of the rally site is the highest concentration of riders in the US.
It was in Vermont. All those riders love to ride Vermont and can get there in one day, many can get there after working a full day. Plus folks from around the country know Vermont as a great place to visit on two wheels.
Now we have a double whammy of an aging demographic and a challenging economy that conspire against big numbers for the National.
As for the time of year, it's the same story. The retired folks or riders without families want a rally in a different time of year because there is a perception that no matter where we go it will be brutally hot. The riders with families want a rally when school's out.
It's weather and while you can try all you want it can't be controlled or accurately predicted when contracts are signed. All the board can do is look at historical averages and roll the dice. Last year Bloomsburg was a furnace, this year same week it was delightful.
I don't think Vermont will ever be topped for attendance but it can always be matched for quality because every National is pretty damn great if you ask me. I don't see a correlation between attendance and quality. IMO The only reason to worry about attendance is financial.
It does have implications for future planning, but weather and climate are not the same. And all we can do at the moment is look at historical weather. And pick facilities with lots of buildings for shelter and cooling.
First we ask what should we expect?
Then we ask whether the facility will be great if the abnormal - heat, rain, wind - happen.
No matter where we have a rally, some big portion of folks will ride through bad weather to get there from all over North America.