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Old 03-07-2014, 03:35 PM
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iflircaircraft
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Our club had to procure a new flying field.
It will cost the club approx $6000 to get the new field suitable for use.
Each current member's dues will increase from the current $90 per year to $150 or more up to possibly $250 (for two years).If we keep our present 20+ members it will be approx $150 per member. If half of the members drop out it will be approx $250 per member.
There is an established club about the same distance from my home which has an open membership of approx 150 to 200 members with yearly dues of $50.
Is it foolish of me to stay with my current club?
Its not all about the money.


Tom
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Old 03-07-2014, 04:25 PM
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lawrence b
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Hey Tom,
From my view point it's about the guys or gals that you enjoy flying with on a pretty Saturday morning. I also have a large club the same distance from me as the small group that I always fly with. The small group is a much more enjoyable group to spend a morning with than the large club. There are no other builders in my small group, no real "scale" enthusiasts, and no one likes to go to scale competitions but they are a fun bunch to be with even if they do fly ARF's!
The bottom line, if you enjoy the company of your current club members then stay with them, remember, $250 won't even buy you a new model or engine!
Larry B

P.S. I like your tiger cat in the photo of your Bel Air 60

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Old 03-07-2014, 09:49 PM
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It sounds like it is time for a membership drive. Either that, or it's time for the club to do some serious fundraising. $250 a year sounds to me like a very high membership fee. So how could your club possibly attract any new people in the next couple of years? Chances are it won't, and when it doesn't it will be left with 10 guys who refuse to quit and a flying facility that is not maintained properly because there aren't enough people. Without a way to increase membership, your club is probably done for.
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Old 03-08-2014, 07:26 AM
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Tom,
Is there any waiting to fly at your current field - probably not.
Can the same be said for the field of the larger club - probably not.
Smaller clubs are usually much laxer in some of the rules and policies.
You need to determine if they are worth the extra money?
Good Luck,
KW_Counter
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Old 03-08-2014, 07:42 AM
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jester_s1
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One of the clubs local to me started out as a group of guys with a fairly closed mentality. They had gotten tired of events interrupting their flying, didn't like the newbies showing up making breeches of etiquette, were annoyed the pilot training time got priority over dues paying members one evening a week, and just flat out didn't like some of the guys they were in their clubs with. So they started a club that would have none of that- no events, no pilot training, membership would be by approval (you had to be somewhat experienced and had to "act right" when you came out to the field for the first time), and everything would be decided by votes. That club started pretty big and financially strong, but soon enough started to dwindle as attrition took its toll. So then they started hosting events on their crappy crabgrass runway to pay the bills. More left. Now they barely keep the facility open, and their volunteer force is practically non-existant. They do well just to mow the runway often enough to fly off of it. I expect they will shut down within 3-4 years.
All of that is to say that hanging on to a club that doesn't have enough life in it to grow is just a waste. If you want to pay triple the price to be away from the bigger club as long as you can, then I suppose that makes sense. It sounds fairly certain you'll be paying 5 times the price soon enough, so it's up to you whether that's a good value. But what you can be certain of is that at those prices you will attract zero new members over the next few years, which means the death of the organization is certain. So invest accordingly.
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Old 03-08-2014, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by iflircaircraft View Post
Our club had to procure a new flying field.
It will cost the club approx $6000 to get the new field suitable for use.
Each current member's dues will increase from the current $90 per year to $150 or more up to possibly $250 (for two years).If we keep our present 20+ members it will be approx $150 per member. If half of the members drop out it will be approx $250 per member.
There is an established club about the same distance from my home which has an open membership of approx 150 to 200 members with yearly dues of $50.
Is it foolish of me to stay with my current club?
Its not all about the money.


Tom
I'd say it's foolish to ask a bunch of strangers that don't know you or your relationships with the other club members to judge how important it is to you staying with a club over (+,-) a few dollars is,, if it isn't about the money,, why post the numbers?

It's pretty simple,, if you like the guys, and it isn't about the money,, why not stay.. It seems to me you're looking for a reason to leave.
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Old 03-08-2014, 04:24 PM
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I fly at a club with about 20 members and high dues. In order to make the club more affordable to others, some of us donate to the club to keep the dues from becoming even higher. Dues are officially $100 but several of us typically donate twice that per year. We believe that if we shared the dues equally, we would get few new members and some of our long-term members would drop out. The dues would get higher and higher for those who remained and eventually the club would implode.

In our case making donations has become a more-or-less permanent situation. In your case it would be temporary - just until the new field is paid off.
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Old 03-08-2014, 08:24 PM
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jester_s1
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I see lots of negative comments about big clubs, but I don't see the problem in mine. There are about 140 members in my club, plus a few who fly there without paying. I have had to wait to fly exactly 1 time in 8 years there, and that was on the first day of our new facility two years ago. Yes, there are cliques as will happen in a group that big, and no, not everyone likes every event that happens or every safety rule that is passed. But it's a generally helpful group of guys, very welcoming to new pilots and generally considerate of each other. I sometimes wind up flying with 4 other planes in the sky, but it doesn't cause a problem.
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Old 03-08-2014, 10:34 PM
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The members should give 'loans' to the club which may be able to be paid back even with $100 membership in future. All present and future members will benefit from the field. Say the loans and then perhaps a one time fee for new members(initiation) $50 to help pay for facilities built by others.
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Old 03-09-2014, 07:19 AM
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LesUyeda
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"Is it foolish of me to stay with my current club?"

Before spending any money, I would strongly advise that you lurk at the new club, and observe the atmosphere for some time before jumping in. You can learn a lot about how you will be received, and treated.

Les
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Old 03-09-2014, 07:24 AM
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For $50 you could join for a year and if you don't like it go back to the old club,,,,,,,, where is the difficulty here?
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:03 AM
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There is the best answer!!!. I sort of like flying with no crowd around, but my old field with more members always had more people, and stories to hear at any time of day. $150 isn't too bad. Cheaper than golf. I figure it would cost more to cut my own grass if I had 5 acres. If I am lucky, someone else will do it before it is my turn. I don't care about the $150, but have trouble with the upper management at home every year. $250 ?
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Old 03-09-2014, 12:27 PM
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iflircaircraft
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I could join the new club and pay only the 50 dollar dues. Then when the new field for my current club is done rejoin it at a 50 dollar initiation and 90 dollar dues.
Why didn't I think of that?
The raised dues of my current club is only temporary until the excavation is finished. Two years max.

Tom
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Old 03-09-2014, 03:13 PM
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By the way, our field is 35 or 40 minutes from you. www.skypirates.org Nice guys, nice field. We're always looking for new members.
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Old 03-09-2014, 03:13 PM
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I don't get on a whole lot of guys' cases about decisions they make regarding our hobby, but that idea is pretty low. If this is your club and you want it to stick around and succeed, they pay the money and show up to the work days during this transitional time. Don't be a bum who leaves the others to make the sacrifices and then shows back up like nothing happened. Like I said above, the club is probably done for, mostly because there are so many guys who will think exactly that way; they'll leave when the dues go up and expect everybody else to take up their slack, then hope to come back when the work is all done.
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Old 03-09-2014, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by iflircaircraft View Post
I could join the new club and pay only the 50 dollar dues. Then when the new field for my current club is done rejoin it at a 50 dollar initiation and 90 dollar dues.
Why didn't I think of that?
The raised dues of my current club is only temporary until the excavation is finished. Two years max.

Tom
Good plan,, jump ship then come back after everyone else has spent the extra money and done the hard work to get the new field up and running,, I'm sure you'll be welcomed back with open arms.
but it isn't about the money
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Old 03-10-2014, 02:26 PM
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iflircaircraft
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I'm going to stay with my current club. I'll join the other club to get my flying in this year. Our new field should be ready by late summer or early fall. What the hell, it's only money.
The other club is a left to right pattern where my current club is a right to left pattern. I'll take this as a learning experience.

Tom
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Old 03-10-2014, 02:42 PM
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After practicing TO and landings for an hour or two you will be just as comfortable landing from the left as landing from the right. It is just a familiarity thing.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:52 PM
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$250.00 a year?
1. Valet parking, car ports.
2. Air conditioned club house with snack bar, 58" flat screen.
3. Swimming pool.
4. Shaded pit area.
5. Work benches with charging stations.
6. Float plane pond stocked with trout and bass.
Who do I make the check out to?
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:37 PM
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It's too bad the ama doesn't have a loan plan that could help with this for a couple of years. My club lost its field a couple of years ago and the other clubs in the immediate area immediately froze membership. I hate to see any field close.
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Old 04-25-2014, 01:13 PM
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None of my local fields cost anything to fly at, the main two are owned by Parks and Recreation and open to the public with an AMA membership. I also have a private/opened field just down the road from me that I fly at once in a while. For the most part I fly at a dry lake bed and avoid the park fields. Reason is simple, the people I fly with on the lake bed I like better then at the other local places. I have a lot of choices in my area so money doesn't enter into it at all. I drive a little farther to fly with the better group of people. You spend more time talking with friends in the pit area then you do flying so the people count.
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Old 04-27-2014, 10:06 PM
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Carlos Murphy
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My old club, Bayside R/C in Fremont, Ca was closed 5 or 6 years .
The land was owned by BART, Bay Area Rapid Transit, their railroad tracks ran right by and they were going to build a new BRAT station there.
Don't know if they ever did, I'll have to check with a friend in Fremont.
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Old 05-02-2014, 07:46 PM
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The other club is a left to right pattern where my current club is a right to left pattern. I'll take this as a learning experience.
What happens when the wind changes?

Yep, sounds like a lot of learning is in order.

John.
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Old 05-04-2014, 04:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Boomerang1 View Post
What happens when the wind changes?

Yep, sounds like a lot of learning is in order.

John.
Then guys don't fly,,, been to many places where that's the case
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Old 05-04-2014, 05:15 AM
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Originally Posted by scale only 4 me View Post
Then guys don't fly,,, been to many places where that's the case
What a sad state of affairs for the hobby in your area.
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