Mass start at the 2002 Golden Goat at Las Trampas

BAOC Board Meeting Minutes

Date: (Tue.) Mar. 8, 2005
Location: Palo Alto, CA
Event Director: - 415.681.7075
Type: Club Board Meeting, all members are welcome

Table of contents

PRESENT: Board members Ian Tidswell, Terry Farrah, George Minarik, Steve Gregg, Nancy Lindeman, Mark Blair, Scott Aster, Ev & Jean Beuerman, Gary Kraght, Van Boughner, Bob Cooley, Tony Pinkham, Nick Corsano, Dan Greene, and Jeff Lanam, and welcome club members Chuck Spalding and Mutsumi Sugizaki.

1. APPROVAL OF MINUTES – Ian Tidswell

The minutes of the December 6, 2004 board meeting were approved as printed in the Bulletin.

2. PRESIDENT'S REPORT – Ian Tidswell

Thanks to Steve G. on Sprint Champs. Congratulations to Steve Beuerman on his Distinguished Service Award. Seems we're back on track with event coordination. Gary mentioned that we are overwhelming some of our venues with large attendance.

A scenic view at Calero Reservoir, 1997

3. TREASURER'S REPORT – George Minarik

The year is starting out well with high event income, even with restricted advanced courses at Indian Valley. Ian mentioned that it is not necessary to have a full slate of courses to have a well-attended event. Park permit fees are going up.

4. EVENT COORDINATOR REPORT – Chuck Spalding

There are only 3 South Bay parks at which we don't yet have events scheduled for 2005. All scheduled events have directors. Almaden Quicksilver wants us only in the fall, and our fall schedule is full. They want us right before the rains so that our elephant trails will disappear quickly. Gary commented that elephant trails disappear in about 2 weeks. Jeff said that the real problem is that elephant trails are reinforced by bikers.

Vladimir Gusiatnikov and Jim Waite have volunteered to set the Golden Goat at Nisene Marks in November, but there is no parking in the park, so Vladimir and Mark are proposing shuttles. Tony said that the park is being shut down to mountain bikers, in particular the section way back that used to belong to the Marks family. Nancy suggests not offering white and yellow courses. Ian suggested renting a bus. Gary suggests separate start times for Kid and Goat to make the bus feasible. Dan said that if Jim and Vladimir are willing to take on the logistics, let's let them. Chuck said that fees might be increased to pay for the bus.

Six weekends in 2005 don't have events scheduled. This doesn't include weekends with big out of town events, like the U.S. Champs, or holiday weekends. The subject was brought up that we sometimes schedule events on the same weekends as GCO events. Ian mentioned that most people only attend events close to their home, so competition for participants is not a large issue.

Monte Bello: Terry reported that the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District (MROSD) may impose new requirements on our events in 2005, including a reservations system to restrict off-trail participation to 75 at Monte Bello, a trained medical person on staff, and a remote aid station. It was mentioned that Joan Roos is a nurse practitioner and might serve as the medical person; she also knows others to call on. Someone suggested that we ask on our membership form whether people are interested in volunteering as trained medical personnel. Someone suggested that the orange course be moved to Skyline Ridge to reduce the load on Monte Bello. There was general agreement that these restrictions are not a reason to not hold events at Monte Bello. It was also mentioned that these issues may not be issues anymore when Terry approaches the MROSD this spring.

Briones: The rangers will not allow more than 60 participants at the Alhambra Valley Rd. entrance at our May 14 event. Thus, the event directors have decided not to offer white, yellow, and orange. Mark said that it would still be easy to exceed 60 and we might consider having a preregistration system.

Sea Kayak event: Scott is trying to firm up an event. He talked to the sea kayak rental guy yesterday; he's still up for giving us a 25% discount. Scott suggested the first weekend in August; Chuck confirmed that these dates are open.

Dan Green finishing at Dalmur on Day 2 of the 2002 APOC event in Alberta, Canada (Photo: Tony Pinkham)

5. SLATE OF CANDIDATES FOR ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING – Ian Tidswell

Ian said that all the current officers are willing to continue, albeit in some cases reluctantly. Ian called for other nominations. George asked if there is anybody who is thinking they'd like one of these jobs. Nobody responded. A slate consisting of the current officers - Ian Tidswell as President, Evan Custer as Event Coordinator, Terry Farrah as Secretary, and George Minarik as Treasurer - was approved unanimously.

6. PROPOSAL TO RAISE EVENT FEES – Ian Tidswell and George Minarik

A proposal was submitted to the Board by an ad hoc committee that was formed at the last Board meeting (Appendix). The Board was asked for comments. Jean suggested increasing the penalty for failing to return an Epunch stick so that people will be encouraged to buy them and not steal them. Various people commented that it is hard to use a stolen epunch stick because it can be recognized.

Scott Aster noted that the USOF insurance premium is going down; weren't insurance costs one reason we wanted to raise fees? Gary said no, the primary reason was to keep up our mapping effort. Nick asked about the family maximum of $20. Jean confirmed that it is being eliminated because it is never used. There was some discussion about reducing the price that additional people pay for a second orange/advanced course. Nancy suggested that people who do white be allowed to do yellow for free. Several people spoke out against that idea, saying that the extra fee is still a bargain. It was agreed that event directors should be able to charge different fees for a particular event if there is a reason to do so, with the approval of the Event Coordinator.

Jeff said that the next Bulletin will be published in the beginning of May; Ian said that this gives people enough notice for a June 1 increase. Jean said that she does not check whether people are actually members when they claim they are; we use the honor system.

The proposal was modified as follows: $65 instead of $60 for lost epunch stick liability fee; fees may be changed at the discretion of event director with the approval of the Event Coordinator. The modified proposal was approved unanimously.

Louise Madrid at Coyote Hills in 2000

7. COMMITTEE TO EVALUATE MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS AND FEES – Ian Tidswell

Ian said that the event fee committee suggested evaluating membership benefits and fees in a similar fashion. The internet has changed the value of the Bulletin, which is one of the primary membership benefits.

Gary said that event volunteers are not covered by our liability insurance unless they are club members.

Jeff, Steve B., Scott., Gary and George volunteered to be on a membership evaluation committee, with Jeff as chair. George suggested beginning the discussion on email, perhaps among the membership at large.

8. PURCHASE OF 15 MORE EPUNCH UNITS – Trinka Gillis (absent)

Trinka asked for approval to spend $1575 plus shipping for 15 new v7 epunch units so that all of our units can be v7. She suggests selling our 15 version 6 units; USOF and many clubs still use only v6. V7 units can be preprogrammed with control numbers; this means that the epunch director does not need to program the units before meets. Our total inventory would then be 58 v7 units. The cost is well within the year's epunch budget. There was no objection to Trinka's proposal.

Interesting rock formation at Castle Rock Park

9. MAPPING REPORT – Bob Cooley

Progress is being made on the maps for the July event at Joaquin Miller. Will extend Dimond to Temascal. Ian said that the Twin Peaks map he is making is contiguous with Golden Gate Park map; Presidio could also be linked in. Mark may digitize Tilden for us. Bob still hasn't found a paid field checker for Tilden.

Chuck noticed an old email from Vladimir saying that Stanford would be a great map for a sprint but that the map would need some work first. Do we want to improve the Stanford map? Bob thinks that there aren't that many things that need correcting. George suggested that Chuck fix the problems he's observed himself. Ian said that if we have a reason to improve the map, we'll do it.

Dan brought up potential upgrade of the Sunol map. It is 14 years old and has 7.5 m contours. It needs lots of corrections. Just 1-2 weeks work by a professional field checker would work wonders. Bob said that much of the map is OK.

Ian suggested thinking about brand new maps. Bob said we've run out of places. We could extend Shell Ridge. Lime Ridge, north of Shell Ridge, is a possibility. Gary asked if there were any places that were good except for parking problems. Bob said Henry Coe, but it's hard to get in there without a helicopter. Nick mentioned the many Midpeninsula Open Space areas. These are all steep. Ian suggested making a working list of potential map areas so that we don't need to rehash the same stuff all the time. When conditions change in an area, we can re-open it for discussion. Bob volunteered to make this list. Jeff suggested areas that are privately owned, such as Little Basin (near Big Basin) that is owned by Hewlett Packard. Gary mentioned a nice interplay between streets and forested areas in Mill Valley.

10. FEASIBILITY OF MAPPING GRANITE BAY – Marsha Jacobs (absent)

Marsha Jacobs is a member of both BAOC and Gold Country Orienteering. Granite Bay is in Roseville. Chuck said some BAOC members went to an event there recently and were impressed with the terrain. It has lots of huge rocks and lots of poison oak. Gary said that in the fall the poison oak didn't seem to be a problem; people didn't seem to be very affected by it. Bob said that the current map does not belong to us. GCO doesn't have much money to do any mapping. Gary said that they do whatever they can with volunteer labor. Gary said that if BAOC is going to help GCO with a mapping project, he'd rather start with a brand new map. All existing GCO maps, including this one, are along the American River and all the terrain is similar. Bob said that Stew Hintz is the main person in GCO concerned with mapping. Bob said that this place has too much poison oak for an A meet. Nancy asked what exactly Marsha is requesting. Gary said that Stew should be involved in any further discussion.

Joe Scarborough checks his escape route on the Green course at Mt. Pinos, June 2001 (Photo: Joel Thompson, LAOC)

11. PREPARATION FOR THE OCTOBER A EVENTS – Robert Lewis

Robert was absent so there was no report.

12. FIVE-YEAR A-MEET PLAN – Gary Kraght

Gary suggested 3 years instead of 5. There are a couple of other clubs that do long range planning, including NEOC. A long range plan would allow us to coordinate the plan with mapping, and we wouldn't have to scramble each year to decide what A meets we were going to offer. Plans can be updated as conditions change. Ian mentioned that it's easier to get volunteers when you ask a long way out. Three years lead time is needed for APOC (the Asia Pacific Orienteering Championship) or a convention. Gary suggests another ad-hoc committee to propose this plan. The committee should include Bob, Evan, and Gary (chair). Mark asked if this should be a standing committee. Gary said that the Event Coordinator and the Mapping Coordinator should always be on this committee, and that the committee could be reconstituted once each year. Ian volunteered to be on this year's committee.

Steve G. thinks we should bid for the U.S. Sprint Champs. Ian said that we're a natural for conventions because people love to come here or to Tahoe.

Matthias Kohler and Dan Greene compare strategies on the Red course at Big Basin 9/21/01 (Photo: Tony Pinkham)

13. PROPOSAL FOR 2007 U.S. SKI-O CHAMPS – Tony Pinkham

Tony passed out a handout on his proposal. Gary talked with Larry Berman last August (head of U.S. ski orienteering group); Larry wants us to offer this. 2007 is as early as we can do this because we need the time to plan. We get higher attendance at our ski-Os than they do in the east. People who visit our ski-O venues think they compare favorably to those in the east. Our snow is more reliable. We need to create an event that people will fly out to; Tony proposes a week of orienteering. We'll need good maps; Tony is working on this. Ski-O maps are easier to make than foot-O maps. For the U.S. Champs we must use maps without one-way trails. Some venues allow bushwacks, others don't. Epunch allows us to use smaller areas. Tony would like a vote on this proposal at the next Board meeting.

Nobody has ever offered a week of ski orienteering in the U.S. before. Spooner Lake is uneasy about having competition there in the winter. Tony suggests that we stage a low-key event there to show them that we don't interfere with other activity in the area. Ian asked whether we'll have enough volunteers for Tony's suggested event. Tony said that ski-O doesn't need a lot of event-day staff. Ian mentioned that an attendance of only 100 would be satisfying, and there was general agreement on this. Ian suggested coordinating with a foot-O in GCO country.

14. DIRECTORS' REPORTS

Membership (Steve Beuerman): Steve was absent; in email he pointed us to his report in the Bulletin.

Registration (Ev & Jean Beuerman): Compasses are on order. Our whistle vendor has gone out of business; A&E is searching for us. Whistles generally cost us $.48 each. We may need a 1000 minimum order this time. Ian asked if we are ready to pull the plug on the hotline. Ian asked who's called the hotline in the past year; about 4 Board members raised their hands. Jean doesn't mind putting the message on, but does the club want to spend $200/year on this? Chuck said that the website can get updated much more quickly now than before, thanks to Van's enhancements. Nobody objected to shutting down the hotline. Ian suggests shutting it down at the end of April and putting a message on there now warning of the impending closure.

Equipment (Mark Blair): Mark had nothing to report. Mark gave Nancy permission to burn one of the old start banners. Nancy suggested obtaining Registration signage. Mark will provide a sign for each kit.

E-punch (Trinka Gillis): Here is the report Trinka posted to the Board email list: Siegfried Ritter, founder of SPORTident, visited the Bay Area in January and met with Evan and me to explain some of the functionality of the new units and answer all our questions. It was very useful. That weekend, he participated in the Indian Valley event with his family.

We have purchased a Master unit with a USB connector (since many new laptops don't have a serial port) and we have also purchased two new time master units. These time master units are used to synchronize the clocks in the v7 units, or to set the clocks in the v6 units. The total cost of all three units was 352 Euros (about $469).

We rented our 58 control units and 65 finger sticks to NTOA for the Interscholastic Championship, and they will be paying us about $337 in rental fees. (58 controls x $3.50 (used one day) plus 67 fingersticks x $2 (two day rental)).

The laptop that was donated in the fall is working well, but the one that we have been using since 2001 may be doomed. It failed to turn on last weekend..

Event Quality (Dan Greene): Dan is revising the course setting guidelines. They will be ready at the next Board meeting. Jean asked that white and yellow not have long walks to their starts. Terry supported this. Dan said that perhaps these courses should be set such that the combined distance and climb for the course and the walk not exceed the guidelines for the course itself.

Juniors (Nick Corsano): Nick hasn't publicized junior training grants much so far; will work on this. Has been fielding various requests for help and finding helpers with more or less success. Nancy asked about awards for juniors at the Sprint Champs. Nancy also said she liked having lots of junior award categories at the Club Champs last November. Mark suggested a "catch-all" award category combining Junior, Veteran, Family, etc. categories for the Sprint Champs.

Permits (Rosemary Johnson): Rosemary was absent.

Publicity (Nancy Lindeman): KGO TV called but nothing's happened yet. Big Blue Adventure site still says that our orienteering clinics are pending; are any coming up? Ian said that Mark Prior has been talking with Todd Jackson, the Big Blue director. We've been getting tougher each year; the first year we almost gave away our services and now we're asking for $5/map. It's not clear whether we'll have a relationship with them or not for this year. We usually offer a long orange course for the 2 or 3 BAOC events before Todd's events; this draws an additional 10-20 participants. Dan suggests doing some intermediate clinics at some of our events; we could double up with the Big Blue clinics or do it separately. A number of people have been asking about this. This would be free. Nancy said we used our new banners at Bear Valley; they were visible from the highway. Nancy thinks this is good publicity. Nancy is concerned about over publicizing venues where we have limited capacity; she tries to keep this in mind when doing publicity. Tony said that over-publicity is not a problem for ski-O.

Bulletin (Jeff Lanam): The bulletin went out last week, except perhaps for last names L-O (due to a label printing problem). Brad Wetmore, assistant Webmaster, has asked Jeff about old training tips. Jeff is going to collect training tips from all past bulletins and Brad will post them on the web. Jeff downloaded a program, PrimoPDF, that makes PDF files for free. He is planning to make PDFs of all the old bulletins to post on the web. They're about 5MB each. Ian said that the membership committee will talk about offering recent bulletins on the web. Dan suggested software that allows a bulletin to be produced collaboratively; Jeff said he's fine with his current system of putting it together alone. Chuck has many copies of the last bulletin. Can anyone use them?

Website (Van Boughner): Move of website to new location is complete and successful. This gives us more space at a lower price, and still gives us daily backups. The extra space allows for an image gallery; there is plenty of space for club members to upload their own photos. Registration for this is now open; after a while it will be moderated to prevent vandalism. Van is going to rotate these photos into the photo display spots on the various web pages. Nancy asked if specialized pages, such as the ski-O page and the junior page, could display only photos of those subjects. Van said that would be possible. Jeff asked about the mailto: tags that are now part of our web pages. Van assured us that these were dynamically generated by Javascript so our email addresses are still protected from spambots.

Ian asked that club officers be assigned email aliases such as president at baoc.org. Van said he could do that. Ian also suggested that photos of club officers be displayed, and perhaps also meet directors. Van, Chuck, and Brad have been working on getting the event schedule into a database so that they can be kept up to date more easily. Ian asked which pages get visited most frequently. Van said it's the event schedule, the home page, and the pages for upcoming events. Brad has been updating the "Latest Updates" box on the front page. Chuck would like to highlight the volunteer resources better. Jeff suggested having a "featured section" on the front page reminding people of parts of the website the may not have looked at in a while.

Future plans: Van has been working with Steve Beuerman to create online A meet registration, more personalized than we get at active.com. It might use PayPal for payment.

Outreach (Scott Aster): Bill Straka agreed to teach navigation at Fairfield. Chrissy Field in San Francisco wants us to teach two classes in orienteering. Scott did it last year; he's offering it to others this year. They paid about $200 each time; he set up a course for about 15 people. Scott asked if we are interested in actively recruiting JROTC students. Nick said he made an outreach effort a couple of years ago. Gary said that JROTC is very involved in Texas orienteering. Some of these students got very good and are now on the U.S. Junior Team. Gary thinks JROTC is probably our best bet for our recruitment effort. Homeschooling is another crowd to consider. Jeff mentioned the Lyceum, kind of like homeschooling. Ian suggests finding people who are fired up about this to work on it. Scott reminded us that it would be good for us to have a presence at benefits fairs of large companies.

USOF (Gary Kraght): It's likely that next year all clubs will get a rebate on insurance fees paid in the past. Finances are looking much better than they looked a year ago.

Training (Steve Gregg): George asked if we are advertising grants. George suggests advertising it on the website. Ian asked if we'll have a training this summer. The last time Steve tried to do it was two years ago and nobody volunteered. Gary wants us to remember that whenever we show up at a park for training, without a permit, it can hurt us.

A scenic view at Annadel State Park

15. NEW BUSINESS – Ian Tidswell

Terry suggested organizing a trail maintenance or weed-pulling event and scheduling it on our event calendar. She volunteered to organize it. Ian suggests offering a short orienteering activity afterward to add an element of fun. Tony suggested contacting the South Bay Trails Center (Acterra). Nick suggests doing one at Big Basin shortly after our meet there in August.

The next meeting was scheduled for Tuesday June 7 in Oakland.

The meeting adjourned at 10:09 pm.

Respectfully submitted,
Terry Farrah
March 9, 2005


APPENDIX

Proposed New Schedule of Meet Fees (proposed effective date June 1, 2005)


White & Yellow Courses

   Entry Fee                 Adult $6    Junior $3
   Each Addl Person          Adult $3    Junior $2
   2nd Course (each person)  Adult $3    Junior $2
   Children under 8          Free

Orange and Advanced Courses

   Member's Entry Fee        Adult $10   Junior $5
   Nonmember's Entry Fee     Adult $15   Junior $5
   Each Addl Person          Adult  $5   Junior $3
   2nd Course (each person)  Adult  $5   Junior $3

Special Events such as Goats and Rogaines (Recommended, but could be modified for individual events)

   Member's Entry Fee        Adult $20   Junior $10
   Nonmember's Entry Fee     Adult $25   Junior $10

Other services:

   Start-O Course            Free
   Beginners Clinics         Free
   Compass Rental            $1
   E-Punch Stick Rental      $3 (with $65 liability for lost stick)