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Author Topic: How can you save a dying club?  (Read 24349 times)

Posts: 73


« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2002, 02:31:51 PM »

Move the club online to a web-site and cut your losses. Meet face to face once every 6 months. People don't have time for clubs unless all the kids are out of the house and they're retired. The only time I have for a club meeting is Saturday morning around 7:00 a.m. The clubs aren't set up for the typical guy with an active family. I'm 35 with a wife working full time and two youngsters in sports and school. I'm typical and likely represent many of the younger guys in the hobby. I'm convinced that the face to face club meetings a couple times a month will die

Posts: 4

« Reply #16 on: March 26, 2002, 04:40:23 PM »

Well, being a new person to all this I have no idea what a proper or accurate answer to your question would be...

However, I would think that a good repeater would be pretty key to making things more fun, particularly for those of us who are on handhelds only.

What kind of money does it cost to mount equipment on the roof of Wells Fargo Plaza or Transco tower?  I know that they have commercial equipment on top of both, but I have no idea about amateur or if there is any.  A powerful repeater on one of the major high rises would probably be pretty darn good, but obviously not free either....

I am personally looking to join a club in the Houston area... and I will probably give preference to one with active membership and with a repeater that is usable from my house.... I'm hoping to find such a thing.

Anyway, good luck.  Let us know what happens.  As someone who lives in the area I'm interested!


Posts: 7

« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2002, 01:27:52 PM »

While our numbers were not as low as yours, I found that the way to revive our club was to offer good speakers on a variety of topics.

We also have our business sessions limited to 30 minutes and the speaker takes over for the remainder of the session.

I took over as Speaker Chairman (I am now President) 3 years ago and have had many good speakers talk on Digital Radio Broadcasting, Transmitter-Hunting, PSK31, Cellular Telephone Systems and how they work, GPS Fundamentals, measurement of Plate Tectonics drift using Differential GPS, Use of Imaging Radar in the Space Shuttle for mapping, etc.

The key to speakers in my club is to offer a mix:  I have Rocket Scientists from JPL as well as husbands & wives who only talk to each other (with limited technical knowledge).  I have to cater to both groups - an involved talk on GPS Fundamentals has to be followed by a Dxpedition Travelogue or a talk on how to mount a radio in your vehicle.  

While we have repeaters, I personally feel that you don't need them if you can offer a "good show."  The members came back as they heard about the types of discussions and how good they were.  Of course the repeater was an excellent way to get that message out - hearing people who had attended rave about the speaker usually causes a few more to come next time - but a newsletter, phone calls, and other types of QSO's can do the same.

Good luck!  Get some good topics and watch them come back.

73 de Mark

Posts: 97

« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2002, 07:43:52 PM »

   I'll probably get flamed for this one..but..
   Most clubs in my humble experience are

   1. Boring
   2. Politcal

   There's only so many "nets" you can tune in and then it gets old.
   One post mentioned the "good ol boy" thing. Alot of clubs seem to leave others out perfering "clicks".
   Clubs who have seminars such as homebrewing, barbecues, campouts, unofficial get togethers etc, seem to thrive more than
"offical clubs" with a "narrow" focus on "emergency".
    Which brings up the point of "if we don't have a repeater, we can't be a club."
    I never could understand that one. Especially for "emergency" oriented clubs. You should be training IMHO without a repeater. Who says in an emergency the repeater is going to be online?
    I think what I am trying to say, don't be so rigid. Have things that are interesting and fun and leave the politics to Washington.

Posts: 3

« Reply #19 on: July 28, 2003, 07:44:15 PM »

Most, if not all, of the advice given here is excellent.

There's only one or two things I'd add, and someone has probably already said that.  Make sure it's fun.  Whatever "fun" is for your groups.  If that's picnics, great.  If that's fox hunts, great.  If that's great speakers, great.   If that's multi-op contesting from someone's house, great--you don't need a huge contest station, you just need to have fun at a club event.  Fun might even mean spending a lot of time rebuilding your repeater network, better.  You know what your members like to do.  But I can guarantee, most people don't consider business meetings "fun".  And people who aren't having fun don't recruit potential new members.

You could also talk to some of the successful clubs--maybe a super-regional club, like the YCCC in New England or NCCC in California--and see if you can schedule a joint meeting.  

My local club just came up with a great idea--a "bring your favorite radio toy" meeting (in Nov., just in time to get your Christmas wish list ready!).  That's just one meeting, but it's a great idea.

Last--and a lot of people will certainly take issue with this--I've always thought that organizations have a certain lifetime.  If nothing works, there's nothing wrong with saying "This club had its time, that time is no more."  It's painful and takes some courage, but there's a time when that's appropriate, too.
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