View topic - Proposal to have the NDC with a vendor spot at Hershey

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The purpose of the National DeSoto Club, Inc. (NDC), is to encourage the preservation, restoration and promotion of all De Soto automobiles, as well as to promote fellowship and the exchange of knowledge among all fellow members. Furthermore, the study, compilation of data, summary of information, and preservation of literature related to De Soto automobiles is encouraged. The NDC’s message board is open to all. The NDC’s Trustees and members are NOT responsible for the accuracy of any of the information posted to this message board. The NDC’s web-master may, at his/her discretion, remove any message that is deemed to be offensive, and deny posting privileges to the person who posted the offensive message.



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:44 pm 
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As a long time member of the NDC we did havea presence at the AACA Annual National AACA Eastern Fall Swap and car Show that has been held in Hershey PA. Over the past 5-10 years we have not had any vendor spot for our club to display our national Banner and or to even let potential Desoto owners know that there is a National Desoto Club. Since there are no more Desotos being manufactured we can only draw on members that can pass along the info to potential members. Since there are approx. 6000 vendors at the swap meet you can only imagine the number of people that are attending the 4 day event.

I would like to propose to the current board of Trustees that we get a site at this yar 2017 event. I know that Les P. our current President drives in to the event for the full four days. We have been able to have a meeting with the Airflow club at their site because Chuck C is a member of the AF club and our NDC club.

But we still need a site to represent our club. We could put up the NDC Banner along with some information about the club, membership applications and other information. Since Les has been coming to Hershey and if he still continues then I feel that he should be given the parking permit to officially park at the site. It does not mean that Les has to man the site but at least the NDC would be visable to any potential member.

Also if any other member would like to help staff the site they would be welcome to staff the information booth. The cost is approx. $90 for the site. If the club wanted to they could purchase additional sites and if we had additional attendees then we might be able to offer the additional space for the people to work the booth and have parking right on the grounds of the swap meet.

I know I go for 2-3 of the days to Hershey. I feel that Les should have the option of being on the show grounds to park his truck and represent the NDC.

What is the thought of the current membership on this proposal and I would like to here back from the current board of trustees on this topic. we need to get our club presence know again.

All comments are welcomed and you can contact me directly if you would like to discuss.

Rich Hartung
Desoto1939@aol.com
H: 610-630-9188
C: 484-431-8157


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 10:02 pm 
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There has only been approximately 41 members look at this posting. I am very surprised that none of the members and of those that do attend Hershey in the fall have not commented on this proposal.

Please feel free to either show your support or not by at least putting some form of comment on the posting. Since the membership is not commenting this is showing to the Board that we as members either do not care or that there are very few members that read the various postings.

You input is vital to the Trustees to make this decision.

Rich Hartung
Desoto1939@aol.com


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:34 pm 
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I have to agree with Richard. I would like to think that quite a few more members (and visitors, for that matter) would respond to this and other ideas posted on this site.
This is a great marketing idea that needs our attention. When I look at the number of clubs listed on the Old Cars Golden Quill Award site, it's obvious that there is a lot of competition for "Car People's" membership dollars and Hershey is a great venue in which to get to lots of those people.
Having an NDC booth would be a great incentive to get me back to Hershey (and the perennial monsoons!) plus we could could probably sell a bunch of extra back copies of the De Soto Adventures!
Best regards to all,
Geoff Overley NDC #4543


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:31 pm 
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Richard, create a calendar and time schedule, provide a list of names of reliable people that have volunteered to work the booth through the duration of the event, and you have my full support.

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It's supposed to be fun!
1949 De Soto Custom Convertible (project)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:08 pm 
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Tim:
The proposal has been put into the current Board Packet for the various Board Trustees to discuss. Bill noble informed me that it might take a couple of months of discussion for the board to approve or not.

At this point in time we need to wait on the board to say yes or no and then the idea of a spread sheet for volunteers to sign up to help man the information booth could be created. I am hopeful that the board will approve.

I will keep everyone posted as I get more information. I am an AACA members so I could be the person that gets the site or maybe even Les if he is a member.
Rich Hartung Philadelphia Pa
desoto1939@aol.com
cell 484-431-8157
Home 610-630-9188


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:25 pm 
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I think this is a great idea. Also, is the $90 spot big enough to park a car ? If so, in addition to a table with a banner, we should also have a Desoto parked in the spot.

I would suggest giving away back issues of the magazine, rather than selling them.

Ron


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:44 pm 
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As a board member, I am far more likely to vote in favor knowing that more development of the actual "plan" to implement a viable presence at the AACA Fall Meet has taken place. I'm fully supportive of the idea of having a club presence, but also want to know that actual people exist that are going to man the tent, that somebody has stepped up to get the tables, chairs, "tent" (or whatever is going to be used), coffee, donuts, club store, extra magazines to the event and set up, and also is there to take it all down, gather it up, and transport it back to wherever it needs to be.

I keep hearing "Les can do it", but he's not commented here, or in the current board packet that addresses the topic, so it's a big assumption that he's going to enthusiastically be taking on a significant part of the load just because he comes to Hershey every year. The Maryland folks just expended a bunch of energy on the convention, and the Colonial Chapter is inactive. Who's going to implement your excellent idea? How many club members come to Hershey?

So. I'm ready to vote "yes" for the idea of having a vendor space at Hershey in the current board packet, but not if "getting Les to do it" is the only idea for staffing/transporting/setup/cleanup/return to storage has been offered up.

Give me some rock solid commitments, and then I'll vote.

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1949 De Soto Custom Convertible (project)


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 2:55 pm 
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Tim:
It would be nice to have a pop up canopy but that is not needed. There is space to park a car and put up a table and chairs and to put out information about the club. I am not suggesting that Les P man the site since if he was at the site all 4 days then he would not have the opportunity to go looking for any Desoto parts.

What I am suggesting is that at lest we have the banner viable and the information table setup. Since Les drives into Hershey I was just suggesting that he be provided with the option to park his truck on the field and that the above items would then be available to any potential new club member. If the board approves of the idea then we could hopefully get some volunteers to maybe staff the site for a couple of hours each day. I can not comment on the food and water aspect right now but that is a good idea. I have been going to Hershey for 30+ years and most of the major national clubs have a site or two and the members support their national club.
Since we do not know who would be going this would be an adventure for the club and as we all know volunteers are hard to get but lets at least provide Les, if he decides to go to Hershey the option of parking on the field and at least get our club banner displayed I feel that is the least that we can do, but if we do nothing then we are missing out on potential members and the club is not going to grow since as we all know there are no more Desoto's being produced so we are now going after a shrinking membership. As you might also note the AACA is having some of the same issues with shrinking membership.
Tim, after reading you reply as to the proposal that I had made I feel that the board of trustees of our club has become stagnate. I have made the suggestion to better the club and to get it going in a forward looking manner, pardon the pun. But when ideas are presented I always get the feeling that if the ideas are not even thought about then they are put down. Yes I put in Les P name since I have know him for many years and I always meet up with him at Hershey. I am not saying that Les has to do all the work but at least get the Banner up a displayed. He is paying for parking on his own accord so why not let him get a site and put up the banner. I feel that at least the $90 would be of some payback, but I guess the club wants to stay small and not grow and slowly die.

So on my part I have at least presented an idea to promote the club but of the other members I have not heard any reply of yes or no. So at times I get the feeling of why should someone try to promote the club. If I had not presented the idea then the idea would have never been included in the board packet.
You mention the Maryland chapter hosting the convention I have also hosted a convention so I first hand know what it takes to put on a first class Convention and car show, but that is not the question that is on the table here.
Rich Hartung


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 4:03 pm 
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Richard,
It's important to note that this thread includes posts from two trustees, one of which is also our NDC webmaster and the other is me, your NDC De Soto Adventures magazine editor. Our board has the responsibility to maintain the fiscal viability of the club and has to deal with many issues on a regular basis. One has to view the regular board packets to appreciate the amount of attention that is required of the Trustees. If one doesn't believe that issues are receiving the proper attention, one has the opportunity to throw one's hat "into the ring" for the annual trustee elections.
At this point, we have not heard from Les as to how he feels about taking on the responsibility of "showcasing" the NDC at Hershey possibly all by himself. I don't feel right about delegating him for this task without being able to provide him some assistance.
This issue is included within the current board packet for consideration and the feedback at this point is positive pending the condition of having member commitment to assist during the event.
Our March/April De Soto Adventures will feature an article on the "Hershey Experience" to propose an NDC booth and request member involvement.
Let's get the info out to the membership and see what kind of response it generates.

I agree with Tim,
"It's supposed to be fun!"
Geoff


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 4:24 pm 
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RichardHartung wrote:
If the board approves of the idea then we could hopefully get some volunteers to maybe staff the site for a couple of hours each day.


I would anticipate that you have strong support for your idea from the board. I support it. My "concern" is what you touched on.... getting volunteers is difficult. My comments regarding the Maryland Chapter and their recent convention is only that with the amount of energy required to host a convention a group of members that are geographically close and could be volunteers might be still catching their breath. And the Colonial Chapter, which would be another great resource of volunteers because they are close, is inactive.

I'm not poo-pooing your idea. I'm seeking further development so that you can remove "hopefully" from the above comment. I don't understand why "that's a good idea, please develop it a little more" results in an accusation of stagnation on the part of the board.

And I would definitely encourage a canopy. Too many stories of rain during the Hershey weekend. The last time I was there it rained the whole weekend and vendors had their wares covered up. We'd either want to be sheltered from the rain or the sun.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:30 pm 
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Tim; at this point the board has not even discussed the proposal so why create a lsit of names.

Also this proposal has been up for over a week and only a couple of people have even commented on the proposal. I am suggestiong that since Les drives in from Mich and spends the 4 days at Hershey the club should allocate the spending of the $90 so that he could park on the swap field. This would then provide him with a specific site and he would not have to spend his own money to get a parking slot near the fields. Just having the Club banner displayed along with a small table with the club information, contacts, application forms etc would possibly help the club get new members, as stated above with 6-9 thousand vendors just think of the amt of people just walking past our site.

we do not have to staff the table every day and every hour but just our presence is worth the exposure factor. Since the board needs to approve the idea then we have to wait to see what happens and also if Les is willing to bring the banner and a table and set it up at the site. Also the Club could have the meeting at the site.

Also we should have the same site each year so that the current members would know where we are located. This should not be once and done situation. It needs to be ongoing to have a positive aspect for the club.

I would be willing to helpout with some hours but we can not expect people to give up all day to man the site. So anyone that would like to volunteer could contact me as potential volunteer and we could get an idea as to what we would have in club participation.

Since this years national event was held in Baltimore we all had hoped for more members that are on the east coast to attend the event. So we might have to really request to get people to volunteer.

Rich Hartung
Desoto1939@aol.com


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:36 pm 
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If this is to be an effective recruiting tool, then I would suggest plans also include having printed membership applications available, and we should consider perhaps having a laptop or something so that people could join on the spot, spur of the moment. How many printed applications will go home and then get tossed? People don't bring checks to Hershey, and we don't want to handle a bunch of cash. With a laptop, we could take online memberships and receive dues immediately through their paypal account. They wouldn't even need to have a credit card. Catch people while they're thinking about what a great idea club membership is.

Have some "new member" packets ready to go that include the latest issue, a calendar (nearly out of date by October) and the roster. Give them something to look at when they get to their hotel later that night.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:39 pm 
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To the board members:
When I proposed this issue of getting a site at Hershey I sent an email to Bill nad to Les. I have only heard back from Bill on the topic and he stated that he received the topic and would include in the current board packet.

I have not received any feed back from Les on the topic either. he might be away on vacation, So I am hoping that he will read the board packet and then provide some input. Hershey is just over 8 months away so that is why I sent out the proposal, also because there are certain deadlines for registering for a site with the AACA and if we wait to long then we miss the opportunity.

Also getting the site location into the appropriate newsletter then gets tight. So this is why I am pushing on this topic. I have had a vendor spot so I have the experience of selling at Hershey.

Also you can also get the information in the program book so there is another avenue for exposure.

Glad to see that some members are now thinking out of the box on this proposal.

Rich Hartung


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:32 pm 
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It is a realization that the car hobby is an old man's domain. The cars from the start of lead free gas (1974) don't have "it" that the cars from 75 year previous had. Can you imagine our children starting a club for K cars or mini-vans-the cars they grew up with?

Our return on investment (say $300 for the space , a tent, paperwork, water and Pepsi) would be probably be small. We should be aware that the days of Mopar red/yellow part boxes from the Desoto era are gone, literature and other paperwork is gone. Even club members who are already set up at Hershey only bring stuff that was pre-sold or fast sellers. I think they come to see old friends and to get a parking space

Last year I saw 2 Desotos on the fields for sale, a 41 coupe and a 56 Pacesetter and a 57 FF convertible both at a longtime dealer from CT.

For years the Studebaker Drivers Club had a major presence at Hershey with a fully maintained tent, copies of their newsletter and applications. Their Keystone Chapter was under the tent always selling tickets for a restored Studebaker. In 2016, no tent. In March Keystone will be having their 44th and final York PA swap meet. No one to do the work, cost are up etc etc

I believe our return on investment (say $300 for the space, a tent, Pepsi and water, computer access and the like)will not be much. Having said all this, I think we should try.

We should have a big board acting as a DesBay letting everyone know where the Desoto items are.

I am willing to volunteer...


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