By Charlie Schrenkel, L140050
Happy 2010 to you! I hope that all of you have a healthy, happy new year and, for that matter, had a good holiday season. Those of us lucky enough to visit with family and friends and enjoy the closeness that this season brings are extremely fortunate. We do have to count our blessings. To those who have suffered a loss or illness, we, your FMCA family, wish you the best.
New recruiting campaign
Your association is embarking on a very exciting time in 2010. We are kicking off our “Dozen Does It” recruiting campaign, whereby any member who signs up a new FMCA member will receive a thank-you note and a $10 recruitment coupon that can be used toward your FMCA dues payment or toward the purchase of FMCA or Camping World merchandise, plus a postcard that may be turned in to the president of your chapter (or the chapter of your choice). When the president has collected 12 postcards, the chapter can redeem them for a gift package. Chapters can receive up to two packages during calendar year 2010.
To help kick start the program, each chapter president will be mailed a total of five free FMCA membership certificates to assist chapter members in their recruitment efforts. If redeemed, these five free memberships will count toward the 12 needed to earn a Member Recruitment Prize Package. (The $10 recruitment coupon will not be awarded to recruiters who sign up a new member using one of the free membership certificates.)
Members who do not belong to a chapter still receive the thank-you letter and the $10 recruitment coupon and postcard. So, if you have a friend who belongs to a chapter and you do not, you may give him or her the postcard to give to that chapter president. Details will be forthcoming, but start thinking now about folks you can ask to join the FMCA family!
2010 area rallies and international conventions
This month we will start off FMCA’s area rally season by gathering for the Western Area Rally in Indio, California. Bobby Donald and his experienced staff will be hosting their annual rally January 6 through 10, with the theme being “Glorious Days of the Silver Screen.”
Following close on the heels of this rally is the INTO Rally (International Area) in Quartzsite, Arizona. This rally is hosted by Sonny Gillespie and his equally competent and experienced staff. The rally takes place January 20 through 24, and its theme is “Back to Basics.”
The Southeast Area Rally takes place at the Hernando County Airport in Brooksville, Florida, February 3 through 7. This year the theme is “Clown Around at SEA.” It will be a good “circus” atmosphere, and Tom Eller and his amiable staff are your hosts.
March 22 to 25, 2010, will find Family Motor Coach Association’s 83rd International Convention in Albuquerque, New Mexico. With seminars, exhibits, entertainment, and more, this promises to be a wonderful “Albuquerque Fiesta.” The Rocky Mountain Area, led by area vice president Allen Rein, will serve as hosts for this convention. Check this issue of the magazine for travel articles detailing what you can see and do in the “Duke City” and elsewhere in beautiful New Mexico.
May 27 through 30, we will celebrate another Great Lakes Area Rally, otherwise known as the G.L.A.S.S. (Great Lakes Area Spring Spree) Rally, in Berrien Springs, Michigan. Ross Boyer, area vice president, will be the host, along with the Michigan Knights of the Highway chapter. The theme this year is “Play It Again.”
June 9 through 12, the Midwest Area Rally will be held at Walworth County Fairgrounds in Elkhorn, Wisconsin. Host Al Talbott and his fine and talented staff will put on this event, whose theme is “Proudly We Hail.”
Another rally with a patriotic theme takes place July 2 through 5, as the Northeast Area holds its “Two Nations . . . One Family, FMCA” rally. It takes place in Essex Junction, Vermont, at the Champlain Valley Exposition grounds, in the hills of Vermont overlooking Lake Champlain. Northeast Area vice president Paul DuBois and his active staff will be hosting.
August 11 through 14, FMCA will hold its 84th International Convention at the Deschutes County Fair and Expo center in Redmond, Oregon. Its theme is “Redmond Rocks.” The Northwest Area, led by area vice president Judy Keppler, will serve as hosts.
September 29 through October 3 are the dates for the South Central Area Rally in Shreveport, Louisiana. It will be hosted by Fred Kennedy, South Central Area vice president, and his talented staff. The theme is “Return to Rally on the Red,” with “Red” referring to the Red River, which runs through Shreveport.
The Rocky Mountain Area Rally, set for October 12 through 16, in Farmington, New Mexico, has a theme of “Swing Time in the Rockies.” Allen Rein, area vice president, and his “excited to have you back staff” will be ready for your visit.
“Nothin’ Could Be Finah Than Winston-Salem, North Carolina” is the theme for the 2010 Eastern Area Rally, October 20 through 24. Again this year, your host will be Otho Tew, Eastern Area vice president, along with his dedicated staff.
So you see, as I have said before, dust off the RV, fill it full of fresh water and provisions, and hit the road. I will be attending all of these great events. So, come on out, stop by, and say hello.
An improving RV industry
This is going to be an exciting year in more ways than those listed above. The RV industry is showing signs of renewed vigor and production.
As I write this (November 2009), I am getting service work done at the factory where my motorhome was born. Just talking with those RV owners around me, I learned that four have just picked up brand-new 2010 coaches. Naturally, I told all of them about our fine association. Two already belong, and the other two now have all of the goodies, including a copy of FMC magazine, to entice them to join our family.
Keep up the good work out there, promote our fine association to any motorhome owners you meet, and we will make 2010 one of the best years ever for you, for the new members, and for FMCA.
Safe and healthy travels.