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Old 08-24-2004, 07:34 PM   #1
Unabomber
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Exclamation Subaru Meet FAQ

This is a how to guide to plan and coordinate local Subaru Meets in your area. It is based on my experiences as a new Subaru owner in Virginia Beach and may provide an excellent framework to build upon for others who are interested in getting together with local Subaru owners.

Preparation

1. Find your local NASIOC Chapter or NASIOC Regional Area.
2. Recognize the rules of the forum. In addition, use plain and concise language. Jumping in and showing your mad tyte typing skillz is a good way to have people dismiss you automatically. Punctuation, paragraphs, and good spelling go a long way. And with any forum, be civil. You never know who is on the other end of that monitor. If it appears someone is not being civil to you, remember that 9 out of 10 times they are joking. The written word does not always equate emotion or intent as well as it should. Smilies do help though.
3. Say hello on your local forum. The easiest way is to make an introduction post. This should state things like your real name, where you live, where you work, what car you have, what cars you did have, marital status, or any other items you feel comfortable with.
4. Become an active member of your local forum. Just because "Bob" 200 miles away makes a post doesn't mean you can't interact with him. Be cordial, be polite, and be civil. Once you start getting your bearings, you will start to recognize the usernames, "clicks", and peculiarities of people that make the local forums so much fun.
5. Recognize the existing "leaders". Many major metropolitan areas already have people who coordinate events. It is best to work with rather than against or parallel to these people. The main reason for this is that locals recognize their username and view their posts. You being the "new person" may get skimmed over. This will be overcome in time though.
7. Add locals to your PM list. Religiously check the location block under usernames. Obviously, many people don't fill this out or have some "cool" phrase there instead, but if they are local to you, add them to your PM list. This way when you schedule an event, you can PM them with the thread link. Ensure you only PM these people with event info and put a sentence in there at the end as sort of an "opt out" of the PM notices of local events. Some people live on the forums and would rather not receive your PM notices. Respect this.
8. Treat everyone with respect both online and in person. Recognize that you will be interacting with blacks, whites, and everything in between. Also there are economic, education, and other differences. If you cannot celebrate the diversity, you should become a follower rather than a leader. Be particularly attentive of first time posters in your area as well as first time attendees. That particular attention goes a LONG WAY towards them feeling welcomed and attending future events.

Planning

1. Schedule a time, date, place, and activity 2 weeks to a month in advance. You can never make everyone happy, so when you plan it, realize someone is going to be left out. You give people enough notice so that they can hopefully rearrange their schedule to make the event. You MUST HAVE these 4 things set in stone or your event will fail.
2. Generally speaking, the best days are Friday night through Sunday. This may vary with your particular area though. Also, coordinate these events so they do not interfere with other regional events. You will get better attendance on a 100% free weekend than a local Saturday event scheduled in the same weekend as a regional Sunday event. Check for conflicting dyno days, autocrosses, or other events that may impact yours.
3. Directions are very important. Always provide a street address to the event, mapquest/yahoomaps directions, as well as plain jane directions. You would surprised how "smart locals" get lost going to HUGE local landmarks.
4. Event planning is important. Group activities are well received and can be divided into the rivalries that always come through. RS vs. WRX folks, East side of town vs. West side of town, and the like. Bowling, go karting, pool halls, and local car shows are excellent activities that any and all can enjoy. Ask the locals for ideas on the next event.
5. Get your grub on! Meal planning should be coordinated with the whole group in mind. This means you should cater towards a vegetarian, 18 year old (can't go to a bar), with no money. Restaurants should be chosen based on wide menus and affordable pricing. Popular establishments are Ruby Tuesdays, Applebees, Chilis and the like. While these aren't the "best", they offer an affordable variety. Good old cookouts or carry in dinners are another easy and affordable option. When going to a resaurant make reservations, or if they don't take reservations, at least let them know that at X time, you will be there with a party of X. Specify seperate checks too, otherwise your will have a lot of credit cards and $20 bills appear which will require high math skills.
6. Timing. No one is on time these days, so just roll with it. Build in an extra 30-60 minute time cushion into your events. Generally speaking, you will kill this amount of time anyway if everyone was actually on time.
7. The location should generally be within easy travel of everyone. Obviously, there are local on the outskirts who will almost always have to travel, but try to centralize events or at least move them around so some are "close" and some are "far" for everyone.
8. Your Subaru Meet post title should contain the date, time, and event/place name. Such as New York City Subaru Meet, Saturday, Aug 5th. This draws attention to the time and place of the event for locals who frequent the forum and those that don't recognize your username. Example post 1 Example post 2
9. Cross post your event on the other Subaru forums and any local forums. Just when you thought you knew all the locals, someone new will pop up on one of the other forums.

Advanced Events

1. Get to know your local dealers. Talk to the sales, service, and general managers at your dealership and see if they are willing to sponsor an event at their dealership. This may take some time though to develop rapport and a relationship with your dealer. While the sales manager may be a cold fish, the service manager may be interested in coordinating an event with/for you. Realize that not everyone at the dealership shares your enthusiasm about Subaru, just keep talking to people until you find the right person.
2. Set up local discounts. Talk to the dealership's parts manager about setting up a local parts discount. If a heart to heart talk gets you nowhere, advise him/her that you can obtain the same OEM parts through several online retailers. This common sense approach is often enough to bring your idea to fruition. Additionally, your contacts through the dealership can network through their peers at work to set up discounts. If you can't do it, have the friendly service manager have a talk to the parts manager on your behalf.
3. Get to know your local SOA representative. Generally speaking, each dealership has 4 SOA reps that are responsible for the dealership and they are assigned based on regional areas. One for parts, service, and sales and an overall manager. Try to establish contact with any of these folks to see what support SOA can offer your local Subaru Club. As with the dealership personnel, they may or may not be very helpful. Find out from your dealer when these people are going to be in town and schedule an appointment with them. Having the backing of your local SOA representative will have an immense impact on the quality of many of your events!
4. Coordinate an event with another major area. Find out the leaders of adjoining areas and coordinate an event with them. This really depends on the travel distance as some people are hesitant to drive more than 4 hours or so both ways in one day. For help with a nice group drive to another area, please view the Subaru Caravan FAQ.

Problems and issues

1. With leadership comes responsibility. Always promote the right values. This means preach the "party line". This consists of responsible use of alcohol, responsible use of vehicles, and responsible interaction of your fellow Subaru owners. What is responsible behavior is a subjective opinion, so you will have to temper your personal opinions to the group opinion.
2. As the leader, you will lose some of your otherwise free time coordinating events, making phone calls, answering phone calls, etc. A successful event requires a little of your time and effort, but generally those sacrifices are small compared to how the events turn out. Also, local members truly appreciate your efforts and occasionally this will lead to a "hook up" that the average person wouldn't end up receiving.
3. Semper Gumby. That is latin for Always Flexible. Flexibility is mandatory as is a sense of humor.
4. Saying Thank you. Many Subaru owners are of the younger generation and the people we can/do interact with are of the old school manners generation. A $1.89 thank you card sent to the host dealership of the event goes a long way towards establishing your credibility as an "organization". Also, encourage the locals to follow up their experiences, while naming names, with SOA via the SOA contact page. This "back ends" the dealership as with every positive comment made, SOA backchannels the email to the dealer and everyone named in it. I believe this goes a long way towards major brownie points with both SOA and the dealers. These type of positive reinforcements keep the time, contacts, and possibly event dollars flowing.

If anyone has any specific questions as to how to set up local events, please feel free to email or PM me with your questions. My first Subaru Meet in Virginia Beach was 4 guys and 4 cars at someone's house for pizza. Our last event featured 80 Subarus.

Ron
"leader" of the Hampton Roads area of Virginia
Hampton Roads > *.Subaru Club
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Last edited by Unabomber; 03-07-2006 at 11:42 PM.
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Old 08-24-2004, 08:28 PM   #2
Brad Pittiful
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the master has spoken
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Old 08-24-2004, 08:29 PM   #3
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Cliff notes:

NASIOCer's love cheesy brats and beer.

I'm currently planning the "east meet's west pt 4" Michigan Subaru meet. Guess whats on the menu.
Cheesy Brats
Beer
yamarocket630's chili, without mushrooms ( ****ing FreeBMW! )
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Old 08-24-2004, 08:37 PM   #4
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I assume FreeBMW is one of those asshats who hates mushrooms? Ironically enough, I am currently heating up my world famous chili that contains mushrooms. yum, yum!

Good luck with your meet though and thanks for the Cliff Notes. Too often my FAQs lack them.
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Old 08-24-2004, 11:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unabomber
I assume FreeBMW is one of those asshats who hates mushrooms? Ironically enough, I am currently heating up my world famous chili that contains mushrooms. yum, yum!

Good luck with your meet though and thanks for the Cliff Notes. Too often my FAQs lack them.
Yep

And no problem
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Old 08-25-2004, 01:39 PM   #6
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As a Texan, I can assure you there are no mushrooms, nor beans, in chili.
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Old 08-25-2004, 01:48 PM   #7
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i am a Texan, and i approve of Prairie Dawg's message.

Mushrooms dont belong in Chili. In fact, they only belong sauteed. IMHO.
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Old 08-25-2004, 02:05 PM   #8
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Best FAQ yet?

I think so.
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Old 08-25-2004, 02:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hondaslayer
Cliff notes:

NASIOCer's love cheesy brats and beer.

I'm currently planning the "east meet's west pt 4" Michigan Subaru meet. Guess whats on the menu.
Cheesy Brats
Beer
yamarocket630's chili, without mushrooms ( ****ing FreeBMW! )
Damn straight we love some cheesy brats and beer! Why do you think I help with all this install/tear down stuff.
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Old 08-25-2004, 03:47 PM   #10
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To add insult to injury, the base for my chili with mushrooms is this:



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Old 08-25-2004, 03:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unabomber
To add insult to injury, the base for my chili with mushrooms is this:



I use the same mix. My roommate always calls it cheater chili, but for some reason he always wants me to make the chili.

We bought a 15ish quart aluminum pot a.k.a. man sized pot for making our chili!


p.s. East Sidaz >>>>>> Hampton Road > *.subaru club

Last edited by mbiker97; 08-25-2004 at 04:00 PM.
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Old 08-25-2004, 05:04 PM   #12
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I use a Le Creuset cast iron pot myself. It costs as much as a downpipe, but the wife tends to keep a Type R kitchen.

cast iron > aluminum
East Sidaz * 2 +1 = Hampton Roads Subaru Club
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Old 08-26-2004, 11:30 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unabomber
It costs as much as a downpipe

East Sidaz * 2 +1 = Hampton Roads Subaru Club
I bought a turbo instead.

And it's really : East Sidaz /2 + 1 = Hampton Roads Subaru Club
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Old 08-26-2004, 06:01 PM   #14
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'clique'
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Old 08-26-2004, 06:33 PM   #15
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Mushrooms in Chili? Are you kidding me?

I'm from Ohio, and been a northerner all my life, and I've never heard of mushrooms in chili. Beans? Okay, sure. But mushrooms? I agree, they should be sauteed (or possibly roasted).

That french cast iron stuff is nice, but I'll stick with my Lodge (free product placement).

Anyway, I just want to say that as I newbie to this forum and to cars in general: Unabomber, you are the MAN. Reading your FAQs has gotten me more up to date on cars than I can even express. Thanks a ton.

Regards,
MAK
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Old 08-26-2004, 07:07 PM   #16
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Pre-diddy, I knew someone was going to call me on that. I like click better, so let this serve as a testament to my purposeful ignorance.

MAK, Thanks for the kind words. Seriously though, try mushrooms in your chili. Portabellas of some kind are the best, but buttons are fine.
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Old 08-27-2004, 08:02 PM   #17
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Quote:
Problems and issues

1. With leadership comes responsibility. Always promote the right values. This means preach the "party line". This consists of responsible use of alcohol, responsible use of vehicles, and responsible interaction of your fellow Subaru owners. What is responsible behavior is a subjective opinion, so you will have to temper your personal opinions to the group opinion.
2. As the leader, you will lose some of your otherwise free time coordinating events, making phone calls, answering phone calls, etc. A successful event requires a little of your time and effort, but generally those sacrifices are small compared to how the events turn out. Also, local members truly appreciate your efforts and occasionally this will lead to a "hook up" that the average person wouldn't end up receiving.
Our local, self proclaimed leader/president/god/allah/messiah/tao has no concept of any of this.

His way or no way.

Would it be very sporting to start my own Subaru club in town??

<WRXed awaits FAQmaster reply>
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Old 08-27-2004, 08:31 PM   #18
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That's a rough one there buddy. Your situation is one of the reasons I endeavor to be as flexible as I can. If you don't have flexibility and open mindedness, then you alienate people and that is NOT what any club is about. If you have already talked to this person about the issues, tried offering him some of your Igg Points, and you can't resolve it.......I see no reason why you can't/shouldn't start up something on your own. The great thing about humanity is the diversity, the bad thing about it is obstinant people.
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Old 08-27-2004, 08:33 PM   #19
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Looks like someone is trying to live up to the title "FAQ Master".
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Old 08-27-2004, 08:53 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unabomber
To add insult to injury, the base for my chili with mushrooms is this:



Hey you stole my secret to my turkey chili.

If you really want to learn about local groups does and don't, visit the Indy thead.
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Old 08-27-2004, 11:21 PM   #21
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I lurk your Indy thread at least once a month or so. EVERY time I go home I just miss your meets. I'm originally from Muncie and try to go home 2-3 times a year. I tried to start an "Indy style thread" in the Mid-A forum for us Hampton Roads people, but it failed. Instead of being nice and organized like you Indy folks.....we have 92 threads all going at once to confuse all but the most apt locals. Oh well, at least they usually see the big meet threads.

It's odd how popular that chili mix is too. I thought I was the only one that used it. It is usually a pain to find too.
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Old 08-28-2004, 12:08 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unabomber
That's a rough one there buddy. Your situation is one of the reasons I endeavor to be as flexible as I can. If you don't have flexibility and open mindedness, then you alienate people and that is NOT what any club is about. If you have already talked to this person about the issues, tried offering him some of your Igg Points, and you can't resolve it.......I see no reason why you can't/shouldn't start up something on your own. The great thing about humanity is the diversity, the bad thing about it is obstinant people.
Yeah you tell me.

Your idea lends its view to "GroupThink" which is toxic in the business world, but more than acceptable in social settings, such as a Subaru Club.

I've brought it to his attention more than a year ago. I tried, and tried to be as diplomatic as I could, but, some people you just can't level with. I pretty much told him to f off. In fact, I did.

Since then, at local rallyX's and AutoX's car shows and other places where Subaru guys/gals meet outside the local clique, a similar opinion has formed bout this person, without my prevocation.

If I have time this winter, I see what I can do!!

Ex-tri-lent thread BTW.
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Old 08-05-2005, 12:44 PM   #23
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great post.
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Old 08-05-2005, 05:45 PM   #24
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Good work Ron.
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Old 08-05-2005, 06:37 PM   #25
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Thanks for the write-up, Unabomber. Once again, a great FAQ. Where's my Cigarette?

David
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