Connie and I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday Season. I wanted to write, let's call this your Northeast President's Newsletter.
Let me begin with a quick report on our 2014 Rally at the Champlain Valley Exposition Center in Essex Junction Vermont. Two dealers who both supported with sponsorships, Longview RV for our Ice Cream Social, and Diamond RV for 2 days of hot dogs at lunch time, both sold units with Longview selling 10 of the 14 they had on display. Our National President & Sr. Vice President as well as our Executive Director Jerry Yeatts were in attendance. With a new board the event was a success and we did not go in the RED. About 250 family units joined in. The board you elected was dedicated, and the final results of the rally proved that.
Fast forward to 2015, again our National President & Sr. Vice President, National Secretary Vicky Ferrari, Gaye Young who is now our newly elected National Secretary and their spouses were in attendance. Three RV dealers displayed units this year. Vendor display did decline both years for various reasons. Our family attendance declined to about 240. Murder Mystery Dinner cruise on Lake Champlain sold out both years.
Our books were audited by the National Officers wives and gave a very impressive report at our annual meeting, a Big Thank You to our Treasurer Jim Sennett for a fine job on keeping everything in order and documented. With a promise to me from our National President Charlie Adcock and his Sr. VP Jon Walker when I accepted the position of the Northeast President / National VP, they would do whatever it takes to bring an International FMCA Convention to the Northeast Area.
Well here comes 2016 and yes they pulled thru after site visits at a few exposition centers in our area. I am so pleased that the one thing I wanted was to see was that Northeast Area stuck together with members supporting the rallies through tough times and people coming forth to step up and take on the duties of the various officer's positions. This holds so true for all the Chapter that supported with all the volunteers. We would not be where we are today without everyone's support. So 2016 the Northeast Area of FMCA will be the host for the 94th FMCA's Family Reunion and Motorhome Showcase August 3-6, 2016 at the Eastern States Exposition Center in West Springfield, Massachusetts. This is the first time ever an International FMCA event has been held in the Bay State.
This is an honor, now what is needed from each Chapter in our area is VOLUNTEERS. Please contact Bob Mills one of our VP's for the area and he will take your needed info and supply you with details. His email is: firstname.lastname@example.org Volunteering is FUN and what a great way to meet old and new friends. We need to show National what a great area we are and how we can help make FMCA a wonderful Family Camping Organization.
So with the information above I hope this explains some of the past from the start of my presidency. Prior to this I served as one of your VP's and Rally Master, thank god for that as it has helped so much in so many ways. Then I enlighten you a little on the present and hopefully another surprise will unfold during my last year with the 2017 Northeast Area Rally.
Plans are already in the works. It been a pleasure to serve the Northeast in this capacity as well as a great experience. Being invited to your Chapter events & banquets gave us an opportunity to meet so many of you on a personal bases. Most importantly remember come our 2017 rally you will have to elect a new President so PLEASE start thinking and give serious consideration to this position if you might be interested. Feel free to talk to me about what it entails. We together in a team effort over the past several years have come a long way, let's keep moving forward and have FUN doing it.
I know by now your eyes are getting cross eyed, but I feel the need to explain what happens behind the scenes just to pull off an area rally. Mentioned earlier was about the dedication of so many which there is, but your officer's work throughout the entire year on various aspects for the rally.
Starting with naturally, the site contract, pricing, entertainment research, canvassing for AD's for the program book, and your VP Bob Mills does the layout and has a friend for printing of the books that has saved us literally thousands of dollars over the last few rallies, donations from every type of sponsor we can think of, car dealerships, body shops, water, soda, door prizes, hot dogs, ice cream, and items for the breakfast we put on, negotiating the cost for everything we try to get, coffee, creamers and the list goes on. Not only snail mail, emails & phone calls, but faxes to various vendor's and dealers, the RV & Camping Shows we attend and set up a booth. I do not want to forget the Chapters, your AD's and especially the volunteers for every aspect of the rally, parking crew, security, volunteers at large, and transportation. It all boils down to dedication, determination to complete the task at hand, because when you come in so many people are hard at work implementing the plans that were worked on throughout the year.
Our board consist of members you elected from all parts of our area including Canada, so come winter some turn into SNOW BIRDS and having a meeting with all present is impossible. Things start taking form right after the conclusion of the previous rally. Every Officer is given a specific responsibility, Seminars, Dealers, Ad's, Sponsorships, Vendors, Program Book, and Golf Carts etc. So throughout the year we have conference calls to see how each of us are doing and what suggestions or input is needed to get the puzzle put together. Yes we do end up with hiccups. We have been fortunate to have the Lions Club, Fire Department, Red Cross, VFW & Elks involved with us as well.
So in closing I just want to thank everyone that participates in the Northeast FMCA Area Rally. This includes the Champlain Valley Exposition Center which is a wonderful place to have a rally such as ours. I apologize for the long letter but I hope this answer some questions many of you have asked me.
Our new Secretary, Donna Merlino is in the process of putting together a newsletter that hopefully we can put out a couple times a year to keep you all up to date on what's happening in our area.
President / National VP for the Northeast Area of FMCA