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News & Views
An Informational Email from the WBCCI / Airstream Club
International's Electronic Communications Committee
November, 2015

 
Above Images by Frank DiBona
2016 International Rally at Lewisburg, West Virginia
 
Considering attending? Registrations have already exceeded 500. Due to the overwhelming response in registrations the club leadership is making plans to secure additional sites, so stay tuned for more information. You can still register for the Lewisburg Rally online at wbcci.org or print and complete the registration form, then send it with your check to the WBCCI Central Office.  But do it soon.  The Greenbrier Valley is a charming place to reunite with your Airstream friends and enjoy an abundance of activities, both in and outside the Rally. You won't want to miss this one!

Here are some unusual attractions in the Lewisburg / Greenbrier Valley area.

AMERICA'S SECRET AGENT-ERA PAST
Exposed in 1992 by the Washington Post, the Bunker at The Greenbrier Hotel was one of America's most closely guarded Cold War secrets.  The vast underground relocation center for the US Congress was in readiness from 1962-1992, complete with House and Senate Chambers, dorms, power plant, clinic, cafeteria and even a decontamination area.  Step through the 18-ton blast door to learn its secrets and how it was kept hidden for more than 20 years. 

FALCONRY LESSONS
Greenbrier Outfitters in Lewisburg specializes in falconry lessons, kayaking trips, mountain bike rentals and rides.  304-536-9245

THE GREENBRIER RIVER TRAIL
Seventy-eight miles of 1% grade trail winds along the longest free-flowing river in the East to waterfalls, picnic areas, a flat-topped boulder - a local hangout for sunbathing and a refreshing river dip - tunnels, fishing, a you-pick berry farm, wildlife and tremendous scenic beauty.

THE MOUNTAIN MUSIC TRAIL
Also known as the Seneca Trail, it connects music venues, festivals, musicians, radio stations, music groups and people devoted to preserving and playing West Virginia's old-time music. 

THE GREENBRIER CLASSIC PGA GOLF TOURNAMENT AT THE GREENBRIER HOTEL, July 4 - July 10, 2016

THE GREENBRIER CLASSIC CONCERT SERIES, July 4 - July 10, 2016

ALDERSON 4TH OF JULY CELEBRATION - West Virginia's largest July Fourth Celebration.


 
Greenbrier Valley                   Explore!                     Dine!                     Learn More!

And then there's the West Virginia Mountain Weather!
June - Avg. High 78 degrees.  Avg. Low 55 degrees
July - Avg. High 81 degrees  Ave. Low 60 degrees
The Greenbrier Hotel in White Sulphur Springs, WV
President's Message
Reprinted from the October 2015 Blue Beret


Hello everyone,
Raisin and I were getting ready to go somewhere and as usual it was taking her a lot of time to get ready. I waited impatiently.  Finally, she was ready and in an angry fit of annoyance I blurted “Well!  It’s about time!!!” (I might have said a few other things.)  I found out quickly that it is all about time…like, when will she be speaking to me again?  Oh, well…silence is golden.

Let’s talk about getting ready.  This is October.  Time to get ready for winter.  In parts of the land, some folks are getting ready to put their Airstreams away for a long winter’s nap…other folks are getting ready to head their Airstreams to a warmer climate…others, in areas that don’t see much winter weather, are getting ready for rallies and installations of new officers. Have you thought about getting ready to be one of those new officers? Your Club needs you…consider volunteering now.  I’m not trying to make anyone angry by preaching here…but I do want to make you mad… mad as in M.A.D….Make A Difference. I know, and you know, that you can make a difference by volunteering.

Have you seen the new advertising post cards that WBCCI is distributing? They’re beautiful…they make me want to get ready, buy an Airstream, join the Club and hit the road…but I’ve already done all that! Hopefully they will have the same effect on all who see them. Thanks to Mona in Region 10 for her part in their creation and thanks to Lori at headquarters for her part in the Club’s acquisition of them. These cards will serve our Club well and make a difference. (Scroll down for more information.)

Remember, the Mid-Winter International Board of Trustees meeting will be held January 10–14, 2016 at the Rayne Civic Center, in historic Rayne, Louisiana.  It’s about Club business, but in a fun-filled Cajun Theme Rally. Get ready for fun!
October 31st is Halloween…time to get ready for trick or treat.  Every year, I buy a lot of candy, put it in a big bowl by the front door, and on Halloween night, I wait for kids to ring my doorbell. But we live in the country. The
closest neighbor lives a considerable distance away. No kids ever come on trick or treat night…only possums and racoons…and they come trick or treating almost every night.  The point of this story?  No point, just wanted to remind you to get ready for Halloween.

It’s a little early for a “State-of-the-Club” report, but, I am pleased with the progress our Club is making and hope that you are, too  Sometimes, probably like you, I feel that improvements, especially with our use of technology, are too slow in coming.  But then I remember what a good friend in the ECC once told me. “It takes time to turn a battleship!”  Progress is being made. If you would like to comment, advise, suggest or if you just want to chat…e-mail me at bcove89@gmail.com. Mi computer time, su computer time…

Jim Schwerdfeger, President WBCCI / The Airstream Club International























Jim and Raisin at the Region 6 Rally.  Photo by Wilfred Schexnayder.
New Membership Postcards
Launched by Region 10 1st VP and Oregon Unit member Mona Heath, with Airstream VP Justin Humphreys.

"Inspired by the National Park Service, which celebrates 100 years in 2016, a new pack of four custom-designed postcards evoke the wanderlust spirit in all who celebrate the Airstream lifestyle."

The membership postcards were launched in Farmington, NM during a collaborative presentation with Justin Humphreys, Vice President of Sales at Airstream, Inc. and Mona Heath.  Mona says, “They are symbolic of a new face of the WBCCI and integral to membership recruitment; their messaging aligns with Airstream’s Pledge and is consistent with future marketing activations.  

Replacing the previous membership packet, the cards have been included in all new Airstream trailers leaving the factory since mid-July and offer a cost-effective and versatile recruiting tool for WBCCI members, as well as the Airstream dealer network.  They are easily customized by affixing a label which provides Unit or Region membership contact information, website URL and Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or a simple handwritten note.  Please contact the Central Office membership team of Tara & Megan (membership@wbcci.org) or Lori Plummer (lplummer@wbcci.org) to order your cards."

- Mona Heath, Oregon Unit, Region 10 1st VP, Membership Standing Committee





Wally Byam Caravan Club International
dba
AIRSTREAM CLUB INTERNATIONAL

At the 2015 Farmington International Rally the International Board of Trustees voted to have WBCCI obtain and use the DBA (Doing Business As) name of  "Airstream Club International" in publications, marketing, and brand identification.  The name of the club and the official logo have not changed and will continue to be "WBCCI."  The addition of "Airstream Club International" to our public image will allow our club to be more closely identified with the Airstream brand and the proud Airstream heritage. 
WBCCI Long Range Planning Committee Announcement

by Jim Cocke, WBCCI 2nd Vice President,
Chairman, Long Range Planning Committee
 
I am pleased to announce four appointments to the WBCCI Standing Committee for Long Range Planning.   Numerous recommendations for appointments made selection easier yet challenging because WBCCI has many talented and experienced members, many of whom are interested in serving the Club.
 
Members of this committee represent diverse experience and outlooks.  They possess vision and skills to work collaboratively in service to WBCCI as they develop strategies for long term growth and added value for our membership.
 
Two appointments to Committee O, Long Range Planning, are from region officers.  These are Don Hetzler, 1st Vice-President of Region 4, and Jim Johnson, 2nd Vice-President of Region 6. Two appointments are from general membership.  These are Joanne Miller of Region 9 and Jay Thompson of Region 3.  Additionally, Barry Bell, 3rd Vice-President and Lori Plummer, Corporate Manager, have agreed to serve in exofficio roles.  Their help will be key in developing and promoting Long Range Plans.
 
Click HERE to view pertinent biographical information about the members of this new Standing Committee for Long Range Planning. I look forward to serving with them as the Committee begins developing the Mission, Vision, and Long Range Plan for WBCCI.
Airstreamers spend a lot of time enjoying our National Parks.  Currently the parks are dealing with funding issues that approach crises.  If you’ve wondered how you might help, visit the National Parks Conservation Association website to discover how you can make a difference.     – Submitted by Sue Heist, Nebraska Unit
Looking Back
By  Joe Peplinski #6768, Chairman,
WBCCI Historical Committee
  history@wbcci.org
 
As the new Chairman of the WBCCI Historical Committee, it was interesting looking back through the archives at some significant events in Airstream and WBCCI history.  Here are a few worth mentioning:
 
60 Years Ago – 1955:  The Mexico West Coast Winter 1955 Caravan was the largest ever with almost 500 trailers participating.  The Wally Byam Caravan Club (WBCC) was formed on July 14, 1955 during the Eastern Canada Summer 1955 Caravan (“International” was not added to the club name until 1964).

 

50 Years Ago – 1965:  The Pan American Winter 1965 Caravan was the first Airstream Company Caravan to travel to the Panama Canal, the furthest south in the Americas ever reached by an Airstream caravan.  The Alaska Summer 1965 Caravan was the first caravan to reach the 49th state.
 
40 years Ago – 1975:  The 18th WBCCI International Rally held in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada was the first International Rally held outside the USA.  There were 4209 Airstreams in attendance, the highest number at the time and the second highest ever.


 
30 Years Ago – 1985:  On April 18, 1985, the WBCCI Headquarters building in Jackson Center, Ohio was dedicated.  The first two of eventually nine caravans to tour China occurred; each used the same eleven 21’ “China Clipper” Airstream trailers and GMC Suburban diesel tow vehicles, but followed different routes highlighting different regions of China. 

 

20 Years Ago – 1995:  The 38th WBCCI International Rally held in Amherst, Massachusetts was the easternmost International Rally held in the USA.  There were 2594 Airstreams in attendance.
 
10 Years Ago – 2005:  WBCCI offered three Golden Anniversary Caravans retracing the route of the 1955 Eastern Canada Caravan during which WBCCI was formed.  There were no more Airstream Company Caravans, the last two having run in 2004.  In total, the company led about 240 caravans between 1951 and 2004, most years with at least two and often six or more offered.

Joe Peplinski, recently appointed Chairman of the WBCCI Historical Committee, and  Lorrie have owned a variety of Airstreams and currently own two, one from the 1960s and one from the 2000s, so they have a foot in the past as well as a foot in the present.  Joe will be writing a regular column "Historically Speaking" for the Blue Beret.  Look for the first article in the November 2015 Blue Beret.  Joe requests that if you have any old Airstream brochures, caravan materials, or magazine articles that you don’t know what to do with, he might be interested in them to help with his research – neither the WBCCI archives nor his personal archives are complete.  If you have a question relating to WBCCI history, there is no one more knowledgeable than Joe Peplinski.  You can contact him at history@wbcci.org.

 
Airstreams in the News

 
Here are a few interesting articles about those silver pickles we know and love.
 
How America Learned to Love the Airstream Again.

Full Time RVing - Downsize Your Home    Submitted by Damon Beals

Airstream Becomes Chic Salon


 
The Rocky Mountain Caravans explored a new caravan format. 
 
The 2015 Rocky Mountain  “sister caravans,” led by Carlos and Rosemary Leach, were two 3-week caravans separated by a 5 day break over Labor Day.  The shorter caravan concept was adopted to make it possible for WBCCI / Airstream Club members with limited vacation time the opportunity to experience a WBCCI Caravan.  It appears to have worked because a third of the Airstreams on the August Canadian Rocky Mountain Caravan were owned by first or second time caravanners.   A third of the rigs followed the entire caravan, and another third, also including new caravanners, joined the group for the September US Rocky Mountain High Caravan from Yellowstone NP to Rocky Mountain NP. 
 
Two consecutive caravans isn’t a new concept, but having some of the members change in the middle hadn’t been done before.  It created almost double the work for the leaders and made for some interesting social dynamics as new members joined a previously “bonded” group, but it enabled 10 couples to join the caravan community who might otherwise not have had the opportunity.
We goofed, twice!
 
In the last issue of News and Views we had a dead link to Dan Bihary ‘s Past International Rally Maps.   HERE’s the correct link. 


The aerial photos of the Farmington International Rally we published in the last News & Views were taken by Glenda and Tracy Ridgeway.  We had an incorrect attribution.

 
Please accept our apologies.