MOA # 30878
Past BMW Bikes: 2011 K1300S, 2003 K1200RS, 1991 K75S, 1987 K75T, 1984 R100RT
I didn't go because of a medical issue that appeared a few weeks ago and left me with the curse of the "pre-existing condition" on my travel insurance.
So, I amused myself by looking up the temperature in Sedalia every afternoon and telling my wife just how hot it was.
But I still would have gone and I'm sorry I missed it.
Now Salem, that's a long ways away.
I think location has more to do with it than climate. Think about it. Draw a 500 mile circle around Bloomsburg, PA for instance, and see how many people reside in that circle. Draw the same around Sedalia and tally the population.
Now obviously the rally draws from far and wide, and many ride a long way to attend. But still, if you have the rally in an area of the USA where population density is high, you'll naturally increase your chances of high attendance. Put in in a low pop density area, you'll naturally decrease your pool of potential attendees.
My first rally, so I'm a noob and don't know squat. But I'd opine that a lot of folks pre-judged the rally ahead of time and opted out due to heat fears. Those people really missed out, as AC was plentiful and it wasn't nearly as bad as some people thought it would be climate-wise. Add to that the fact that Missouri probably isn't the most romantic destination in the world, and you have meh attendance.
Others have hit the real nail on the head, though. If the rally is in late July, and you want to avoid heat, that really limits your choices of location.
In the MOA's defense, a large segment of the country had heat every bit as bad as we did in this area ( I live 65 miles from Sedalia in KC ) during the rally. Our humidity was probably less than many places. It wasn't that bad. But people like to complain.
By the way, I'm not a super young guy but I do have a kiddo. If the rally was during school time, it would drastically decrease my chances of attending. This may not apply to many, but as someone else said, if you want younger folks there, a fall or spring rally hurts the chances of attracting that demographic.
I really wonder how humans apparently lasted thousands if not millions of years on this earth without A/C, heated seats, power windows, remote controls, and 4G internet phones with unlimited data plans. I remember being on field exercises at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, CA in July back when I was in the Army. Full gear, digging fighting positions for weeks in the sun most of the day. Now THAT was hot, and there were no cool BMW cycles to look at either. Similarly, throwing hay bales onto a cart and then into the sweltering barn at my grandparents' farm in PA during the summer when I was younger...that was also HOT. Strolling between air conditioned vendor buildings at a BMW rally, surrounded by great folks, beer tent nearby...uh, no...not exactly a hardship.
Just a thought,
instead of looking at fair grounds, how about we look at a college or university. They would have empty dorms, dinning halls, and lots of room. They might also have many unused showers, bathrooms, etc.
'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.
I have limited vacation time, no matter what the time of year. Good roads and interesting locale is what draws me to a national. New England, around the Dragon, the Rockies, West Coast, etc. Flat, boring location means I plan to spend my riding vacation time elsewhere. With the average age demographic creeping up every year, I do not think that kids would hold back members from attending. Maybe that sentiment comes from the planners, not the attendees... YMMV.
Last edited by Ron_Ces; 07-24-2012 at 01:43 AM.
Ride whatever makes you smile! Every bike has it's own issues, problems and annoyances...
Yes, I too wanted to attend the rally in Sedalia, but after attending Bloomsburg last year in 101 temp with seminars being held in un-air conditioned barns and buildings, and vendors in poorly air conditioned buildings,I declined. I however want to thank all those volunteers that helped this year and those that made the Rally possible.
I truly enjoy visiting the vendors and attending the seminars last year. Perhaps this year the air conditioning worked adequately, but I was not willing to take the chance. I can't imagine enjoying 107 temps and sleeping in a tent with little relief. I admire those that can tolerate and even joy these temps, but I would be in denial to say that it would be fun for me.
I realize the logistics with changing dates, but hopefully some effort will be made to find cooler months of the year or higher elevations for the rally. Remember, those of us who work must take off also and not just those associated with school.
I haven't seen anyone who attended the rally complaining about the heat....
I see lots of folks that didn't go complaining about the heat that they didn't experience.
There were ~5200 folks that had a great time!
It was a great rally and not nearly as hot as Bloomsburg. I arrived Tuesday and camped through Saturday. There was a nice breeze day and night. I don't know about anyone else, but I don't sit in my tent during the day.
There was plenty of air conditioned buildings, not just for vendor areas, but other buildings like the one next to the beer tent and the vintage bike buildings to name a few.
I understand July rallies are what are preferred by the majority of the membership.
Yes the demographic is getting older. Changing the rally to other months and not attracting younger members that have family commitments for spring and fall dates will continue to cause the club demographics to get older and older until there is no one left who wants to go to a rally regardless of month.
Kansas. Eleven curves in three hundred eighteen miles...
'09 R1200RT '73 R75/5
Iron Butt Assoc. #47865
Per Rob Nye:
"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."
As the OP for this thread, I will take the liberty to expand upon Mr. Nye's comments.
It is disingenuous, if not self-delusional, to make the claim that the Rally must be held in July to allow members with families to attend, or to attract "younger" riders, or any one of the numerous "reasons" given for the date. Exactly how many children did you see attending the rally? Is this even 10% of the attendees? For those that wish or need to make arrangements based on family responsibilities, could not a three day trip allow them to at least partially attend the event? Could not one rally every four years be scheduled for an autumn period? Personally, I would love to ride the roads of Vermont, New Hampshire or upstate New York in the fall.
Let's be brutally honest. By far the majority of BMW riders are older (and some way older than others ), and have somewhat greater flexibility in their scheduling. At the same time, increasing health issues among the membership make attending a (questionably scheduled) rally a possible life or death choice. Are we waiting until someone dies from heat stroke before we rethink our priorities?
Just as we rotate the location every year to allow everyone at least the opportunity to attend a rally, why can we not rotate the date? Why is inertia so difficult to overcome in this matter?
Finally, I would hope that we would temper our criticism of those who decided that the oppressive temperatures were too much to bear, and elected not to attend this year. There is nothing to be accomplished by demeaning them. This is not a contest or machismo evaluation.
I know that this is regular hot-button topic of discussion, but would hope that perhaps a new approach might offer up some alternatives to the current situation.
Just my two cents
I have asked this question pointedly to some and privately to others and I have not gotten a reply.
Listening to those people, would be like the Pope listening to non church goers when making decisions of faith.
Perhaps we need a "Whine forum"???
309 N. 3rd. Ave.
Kure Beach, NC 28449
2009 R 1200 RT,1996 R1100RT, 1985 K100RS...too fast to believe.
You guys are grouchy, who'd want to go to a rally with you?
Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014 And DRAT! Missed the last one in 2015!
thanks to the rally chairs and volunteers.
loved the rally. beautiful location that never felt crowded. friendly locals (hard to get gas in town for being asked questions). great music. great vendors. great backroads (the lettered roads). plenty of cold beer.
it was hot, but the kind of heat where you could get up and ride early and still feel refreshed if back by noon. then, drinking water and wetting your t-shirt could keep you comfortable. in contrast, where i am, it is so humid and "only 90", but there is no relief except to stay inside.