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Old 05-28-2007, 03:59 PM   #1
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MREA get togeather June 15-17

As discussed in another thread ( http://www.gassavers.org/showthread.php?t=1211 ), a few of us gassavers members are planning to meet at the MREA fair ( http://www.the-mrea.org/energy_fair.php ) this upcoming June 15-17 (Friday - Sunday).

While the fair itself looks very interesting (and reasonably cheap entrance fee), I would love to actually meet "face to face" any gassavers members that actually attend that fair. The big question is how? The fair is supposed to be HUGE, and many of us don't know what each other look like (and even if we did, the fair is big enough we might not spot each other). And I doubt cell phones will fix the problem either (even though I would be willing to PM my cell number to other fair goers), as any cell towers that might be around the fair will likely be so overloaded (with people attending the fair) as to be "iffy at best" for communication.

So what does that leave us? IMHO the most sensible solution is to arrange ahead of time some easily identifiable landmark (at the fair) where gassavers can meet, along with some times during the fair (say one or two fixed meeting times per each day of the fair) when we should all try to gather together at the landmark (along with some way to identify each other when we are now in close proximity). Trouble is, I've never been to the fair before, so I couldn't pick the landmark (anyone who has been, want to suggest a good landmark and time?).

So what do people think? Is this a doable plan? And if so, anyone want to suggest good times and places to meet (and some way to identify each other when we do meet, such as all making our own "gassavers" badges we wear when meeting at the landmark)?

Also, who all is planning to attend that gathering?
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:04 AM   #2
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I hope to be able to go for many reasons. Some other people I know on an RE (renewable energy) http://www.wind-sun.com/smf/index.php site will be there and I wanted to talk with some installers about geo thermal heat pumps. And a group of TDI'ers http://forums.tdiclub.com/ that run bio diesel also going, one of them has his car in the car section of the event.

I have been there a few times, luckily for me it is about 90 minutes from here or just over a gallon away Where to gather, I am not sure or even when. You basically park in fields outside the fair grounds and you can park on the south or north side of the grounds so that can get confusing as well, and as you can imagine FRS radios are really busy as well. To top it off cell isn't the best out there, depending on who your carrier is.
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:13 AM   #3
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I would say that the FRS radios would be a great idea - only because I have a bunch of them and there are plenty of channels to pick from maybe a high channel number for GasSavers. GPS coordanents would be another way via a text message to the cells. Before we go maybe PM a recent photo to each other to have a catalog of members attending and there is always the GasSavers.org stickers stuck on the backs of jackets, hats, t-shirts etc. Or we all walk around with BIG Green Balloons! with GS stuck on them.
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Old 05-29-2007, 04:43 PM   #4
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Arranging to know each other's cell numbers wouldn't hurt (although please keep calls to me short, as I pay by the minute on a pre-paid cell plan for both voice and SMS).

And we do have an old FRS or two lying around the house, so we could bring those (but as you mentioned, they are likely to have those channels JAMMED). If we do go the FRS route, please pick a frequency AND a "privacy code" for us to use (so we at least have a fighting chance of getting through to the people we are trying to talk to).

And photos (along with whatever we can put on our bodies/bags that says "gassavers.org") are also good (I'll probably improvise something saying "gassavers.org", and put it in a plastic nametag holder, and then clip that "nametag" to my clothes/bag).

However, even when I know someone, it's hard to pick them out in a large crowd. And finding each other by pictures, gassavers badges, etc, is going to be extremely difficult in a place as big as that event is supposed to be! And as already mentioned, both FRS and cell phones will be "iffy at best" (we might "get lucky", or we might not).

Which is why I still think the only decent "backup plan", is to have a time and place to meet, so we can have a much smaller crowd in which to try to find each other. And we either need to set that up ahead of time, or have some way to announce it at the fair in a way that all gassavers.org members can easily get the message.

Hmmm... For those who have gone to the fair before, do you happen to know of they maintain a general "announcements board" (say at the signup/entrance desk?) where various groups can list short (get together type) announcements?

If so, we could just plan to have the first gassavers member that makes it in, to find a decent landmark and then use the "announcements board" to post a "The members of gassavers.org are meeting by {such and so landmark} at {such and such time}." announcement. Of course that plan is only viable if we are pretty sure there will be some common/standard place to post that "announcement" once we get to the fair. Otherwise, we really need to plan the meeting times/places ahead of time (as I'm not sure our phones/radios would be enough to assure us that we could coordinate the "face to face meeting" after we get there)...
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:22 PM   #5
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when you walk thru the main gate (where you pay your $10 to get in) you will notice that to the south/left a sign for "clean energy car show" I say we meet there, they reareange everything every year a bit, but after looking at this years map of the grounds the north west corner of the clean energy car show is looking good, there should be a gathering of port-a-potties there, I say we meet about 20-40 feet to the south/left (as seen when you walk in thru the main gate) of them, I think that should be a grassy area that I suspect will be low trafic, an not in the way of anyone.
As for a time how about 3pm, it's a vaugly open spot in all of the days as far as workshops, preventing anyone from missing a truely great workshop that they just have to go to, and this time should work for any of the 3 days I suspect, also it is in an area (car show) that should hold people with short attention spans.

I've never tried a cell phone there befor, as I just got one, but I know a number of people have them work there, and I don't have roaming so if anyone plans to be there and would like to try to contact me, PM me and info can be exchanged.
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:58 PM   #6
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I was hoping to go, but it looks like I have a job coming up that will be that weekend. I was really looking forward to this one though.
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Old 05-31-2007, 10:11 AM   #7
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Man was checking the map earlier today - that is a long trip 1202 miles at least for me each way - that's three tanks of gas each way phew!!
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Old 05-31-2007, 12:51 PM   #8
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Damn, 961 miles (15 hours) each way. Would love to go though, but can't this year
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Old 05-31-2007, 07:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryland View Post
when you walk thru the main gate (where you pay your $10 to get in) you will notice that to the south/left a sign for "clean energy car show" I say we meet there, they reareange everything every year a bit, but after looking at this years map of the grounds the north west corner of the clean energy car show is looking good, there should be a gathering of port-a-potties there, I say we meet about 20-40 feet to the south/left (as seen when you walk in thru the main gate) of them, I think that should be a grassy area that I suspect will be low trafic, an not in the way of anyone.
As for a time how about 3pm, it's a vaugly open spot in all of the days as far as workshops, preventing anyone from missing a truely great workshop that they just have to go to, and this time should work for any of the 3 days I suspect, also it is in an area (car show) that should hold people with short attention spans.
Sounds like a plan.

BTW: I noticed their web site doesn't have a site map listed. However, their "reNEWS" newsletter (which anyone who chose to sign up for the organization for a year, will likely have) apparently does have a lot of info on the fair, including a "site map" of how the fair grounds are laid out this year. So to assist any other gassavers members (who might not get "reNEWS") with figuring out the fair layout, I've taken a digital photo of that map and uploaded it to this forum post.
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Old 06-02-2007, 05:28 PM   #10
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While the MREA is fairly large, it isn't so large that we wouldn't be able to meet up.

I plan on attending this year, but haven't decided if Saturday or Sunday will be the day. Fortunately for me it is only about 2 hours north of me.
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