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Tips on starting club


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#1 Hot_Rod_Bob

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Posted 30 May 2007 - 11:54 AM

I have been thinking about this for some time now, starting a model club in my town. we have a population of about 7,000 and there are a lot of kids here. If anyone has started a club I could use some tips here, I know there has to be some other folks in this town that enjoy this hobby. From my research I have found a club in Springfield, Ill but it is almost 50 miles from here, and with the price of gas the way it is, I thought this may be a good idea. Any and all thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for reading
Bob

#2 ScottVS

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Posted 27 July 2007 - 05:57 PM

I think I'm in the same boat as you . About two weeks ago I posted a meet and greet in the Grand Rapids , Michigan area and only got 2 guys to show up and three that emailed me about it . I will being tring it again soon..

#3 BigPoppa

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Posted 31 July 2007 - 09:52 AM

I started a club from scratch 4 years ago. Best advice I can give you is to get aquainted with your local Kinko's and drop loads of flyers everywhere you think there might be interest, hobby shops, toy shows. Get the name out there. There's only a couple of active clubs I know about in Denver, but we're each with about 8-15 regular members, so 2 out of 7000 isn't too bad a start.

#4 FloridaBoy

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Posted 06 September 2007 - 02:14 AM

I've seen two clubs both successful start in different ways. First, the Palm Beach, Broward and Dade model car population is traditionally a hard sell, despite being the home of inspirational people in our hobby, like Augie Hiscano (God Bless and Rest his soul) and Bob Kuronow (owner and operator of Model Car Garage).

The first club was started at a popular hobby shop via flyer and word of mouth, and at their first meeting boasted over 40 attendees, including beginners all the way to national and Salt Lake winners. They waited until they got enough feedback from the hobby shop owner, and had a meeting place near the hobby shop. It thrived for several years with large club turnouts and great contests until a war of egos ultimately tore into its morale, and it died.

The second club was started by a few guys informally going to the same hobby shop regularly and sharing their builds. The same hobby shop under a new owner, ultimately allowed the guys to use the "back room" where the lunch table was to hold their get-togethers. Pretty soon, the guys got comfortable and said why don't we form a club. A few guys balked, because to them a club meant rules, fights, rejections, ego battles, politics and much more. So they kept it simple, and there were no officers, (one guy with a bigger mouth and some leadership provided some guidance) no rules, no nothing except gathering and sharing. Unfortunately, they met their demise by the dynamics of South Florida. Some guys lost their jobs, got divorces, got ill, and others moved away and the club sort of automatically dissolved.

Both considering this area I would say were successful. I would suggest that to try to establish a reputation and group identity after getting together a few times. I would not bother with rules too much after you get a large membership, and at least one guy should do the "calling" before each meeting to remind some of us who are forgetful. Then take it from there, it will grow itself like a house plant. If you care for it and nurture it, it will grow up to be very robust and healthy.

Ken "FloridaBoy" Willaman