Author Topic: The future of the SAAC  (Read 32118 times)

J_Speegle

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #195 on: August 15, 2018, 01:17:50 AM »
I'm sure if you stuck pins in a map the majority of members would be living in ..................

Would be interesting to see what a real membership map would look like currently.

Really interesting would be a comparison of that with Shelby ownership since its not only members that attend the conventions and individual number of owners has been dropping over the years.
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QuickSilverShelby

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #196 on: August 15, 2018, 01:44:59 AM »
I would like to know what the "numbers" of registered cars where in Sonoma, Indy and Mid Ohio.  Maybe I was all star struck at each of the last three conventions but it sure felt like the numbers of cars attending were very similar between each venue.  I might be way off.

I also remember everyone screamin and yellin about cars being parked on grass and dirt in Mid Ohio.  At Sears Point and Indy we had sweet, sweet asphalt as far as the eye can see on which to park all those beautiful cars but attendance was lower at Sears Point.

Indy was cool due to the history of the race track but if felt like the convention was overwhelmed by the magnitude of the venue.  Mid Ohio and Sears Point felt way more intimate. 

Denbeste Motors and The Cobra Experience were amazing excursions at SAAC 43.  The museum and history at Indy for SAAC 42 was unbelievable.   Driving through the country and the winding roads to the track at Mid Ohio at SAAC was like heading to the Field of Dreams. 

Of course the cars at each convention were incredible and the people I met were just fantastic.

My point is that there is always going to be great things, good things and some mediocre things about each convention.  If the crowds at Sonoma were a little smaller than the last couple conventions I guess it is what it is.  At lease the cars weren't parked in the dirt and grass. 

I'm trying to be "cup half full guy".

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Terry Curry

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #197 on: August 15, 2018, 02:54:59 AM »
I find this subject interesting. I've been a member of SAAC for 10 years and also a member of the Bay Area Tiger club for over 30 years and I see some similarities of issues that both clubs have and had.
For the poor attendance on the west coast part of that you can contribute being so close date wise to one of worlds largest car spectacles, the Monterey Historics and Pebble Beach.  A lot of people schedule their vacation around that event and I think the SAAC convention was just a little too early in August, maybe if it was closer to the Monterey event people could have attended both.
I've attended 2 conventions on the west coast, every time I come away enjoying the cars, static or racing but as for learning something or trying to figure out what is what and who is who I am lost. Part of that is my failure not attending any of the outside events like the dinners and the tours, but at the track there is no promotion. No signage explaining where judging is taking place or explain the differences between years of the cars. That was one of similarities  I find with car clubs, all the veterans know their way around the events and know the people. New members are then left out trying to figure out what the heck is going on and its gotta be worse with a national club. With these conventions it might be good time to ask people attending if they are new SAAC members, did they bring a car and where they came from. Maybe if they had a welcoming tent/location it might help or maybe they did and I didn't see it.
Another thing that I thought was weird was the promotional material, just a small booth selling a few items. I was hoping that there was items for sale with different years Only selling 1968 items I get because that was year the convention was celebrating, but nothing for the other years/cars. Bummer.
Somebody did say "did you check the SAAC website" which I did and everything is sold out. Almost looks like a going out business sale.While I was on the SAAC site I decided to check out any info about this years convention and the convention page just stated the event is completed. That is it? Maybe they will post pictures or winners of this past event.
These are just my observations and like getting my annuals and I've purchased all the registeries to help support the club and I'm looking for SAAC to staying around for many more years.

Terry

 



J_Speegle

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #198 on: August 15, 2018, 04:34:31 AM »
Would say that there was not allot of extra room for many additional cars and support vehicles at the most recent locations unless you wanted to park up on the hill in the gravel and walk down. It really isn't a large venue for this sort of event compared to some others. Beaver Run might be similar in size until you include the large grassy area outside of the main area  Was asked by a fair number of people with rigs and cars who didn't show up till Saturday and by then most of the spaces are area had been called for except for some area at the far north end at the end of the grandstands between about 30-40 pieces of personal transportation and the driving school fence.  Peoples choice show area was staked out on Thursday and by the show they were crammed in there fairly tight. Sure there were some fire marshal (access) rules being ignored there somewhere.  ::)
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SFM6S087

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #199 on: August 15, 2018, 05:16:09 AM »
As far as the running of the club is concerned Iíll say this. I think Iím getting more than my moneyís worth with the quarterly Shelby American online, the annual print edition, the service of the Registrars, and the publicity and prestige that SAAC brings to our cars. Plus the opportunity to attend a convention each year if I choose. Iím a happy member.

If someone has suggestions for how to improve things, then by all means send them to SAAC HQ. Iím not against change for the better.

About the conventions. I believe there was a survey sometime in the last year or two that polled our members for input. The results were tabulated and made available. I know at one time there were some specific numbers given about where our members live and convention attendance in various parts of the country. As I recall, that information was quite detailed, and included some discussion of the finances involved in putting on these events. But I donít know if that was part of the poll results or presented at some other time. (BTW, I always wondered why we couldnít have a convention here in Texas. After reviewing that data I understood.) Maybe someone can find that survey info and post it here.

If someone has ideas on how to improve the conventions, please send them to SAAC HQ. I have no illusions about every idea being accepted. Many wonít be practical for financial or other reasons. But if a hundred suggestions are submitted and three are implemented, that would still be worthwhile.

For what itís worth, I donít think the people in control of SAAC read this forum Ė or at least not very often. If you have a question or suggestion for them I suggest you email them directly. All their email addresses are on the SAAC.com site. But donít expect an immediate response from them during the month before or after a convention. Theyíre pretty busy around that time.

And just so youíll know, I have no affiliation with SAAC management. Iím just a member like most of the others here on the forum. And like many of you, I sometimes feel compelled to share my thoughts with the group.

My 2 cents.
Steve

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #200 on: August 15, 2018, 06:26:15 AM »
As far as the running of the club is concerned Iíll say this. I think Iím getting more than my moneyís worth with the quarterly Shelby American online, the annual print edition, the service of the Registrars, and the publicity and prestige that SAAC brings to our cars. Plus the opportunity to attend a convention each year if I choose. Iím a happy member.

If someone has suggestions for how to improve things, then by all means send them to SAAC HQ. Iím not against change for the better.

About the conventions. I believe there was a survey sometime in the last year or two that polled our members for input. The results were tabulated and made available. I know at one time there were some specific numbers given about where our members live and convention attendance in various parts of the country. As I recall, that information was quite detailed, and included some discussion of the finances involved in putting on these events. But I donít know if that was part of the poll results or presented at some other time. (BTW, I always wondered why we couldnít have a convention here in Texas. After reviewing that data I understood.) Maybe someone can find that survey info and post it here.

If someone has ideas on how to improve the conventions, please send them to SAAC HQ. I have no illusions about every idea being accepted. Many wonít be practical for financial or other reasons. But if a hundred suggestions are submitted and three are implemented, that would still be worthwhile.

For what itís worth, I donít think the people in control of SAAC read this forum Ė or at least not very often. If you have a question or suggestion for them I suggest you email them directly. All their email addresses are on the SAAC.com site. But donít expect an immediate response from them during the month before or after a convention. Theyíre pretty busy around that time.

And just so youíll know, I have no affiliation with SAAC management. Iím just a member like most of the others here on the forum. And like many of you, I sometimes feel compelled to share my thoughts with the group.

My 2 cents.
Steve

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shelbydoug

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #201 on: August 15, 2018, 07:26:01 AM »
I'm sure if you stuck pins in a map the majority of members would be living in the north eastern 1/4 of the country - east of Ohio and north of New Jersey. The wide open spaces of the west are less dense population wise. Fly in participation is more likely for those east of the Rockies. Western ownership is probably concentrated in So and Mid CA where cars can be drug out and driven any day it strikes you. There are several track days a year so driving 400 miles from SoCal to SF to use Sears isn't much incentive.

Really? So lets balance the power of 30 or 40 hard core western enthusiasts vs. hundreds if not thousands that drive on the east coast up to about 9 hours to get to the track?

It just boils down to out and out appeasement to the west. There is no other way to explain it.

Should I post pictures of the Dearborn conventions again? That was a 14 hour tow for me.

So in LA, you don't want to get out of your pool? Common'. This is all just BS.
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Bigfoot

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #202 on: August 15, 2018, 03:02:04 PM »
I find this subject interesting.   

Another thing that I thought was weird was the promotional material, just a small booth selling a few items. I was hoping that there was items for sale with different years Only selling 1968 items I get because that was year the convention was celebrating, but nothing for the other years/cars. Bummer.
Somebody did say "did you check the SAAC website" which I did and everything is sold out. Almost looks like a going out business sale.While I was on the SAAC site I decided to check out any info about this years convention and the convention page just stated the event is completed. That is it? Maybe they will post pictures or winners of this past event.
These are just my observations and like getting my annuals and I've purchased all the registeries to help support the club and I'm looking for SAAC to staying around for many more years.

Terry

Thnx for coming into the Forum Terry

This is exactly why the Forum needs to be perfect....
Because a great deal of Q/A and enthusiasm and energy used to be here.
The grape is dying on the vine.....
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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #203 on: August 15, 2018, 03:04:50 PM »
  Lack of attendance in the California conventions?  Maybe the neighborhood has  changed......Build the wall!
It has been the case for several decades that the attendance at the CA and for that matter western conventions (Utah, Oregon ) have had much lower attendance compared to the ones back east.

Eggzactly
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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #204 on: August 15, 2018, 11:59:06 PM »
I'm sure if you stuck pins in a map the majority of members would be living in the north eastern 1/4 of the country - east of Ohio and north of New Jersey. The wide open spaces of the west are less dense population wise. Fly in participation is more likely for those east of the Rockies. Western ownership is probably concentrated in So and Mid CA where cars can be drug out and driven any day it strikes you. There are several track days a year so driving 400 miles from SoCal to SF to use Sears isn't much incentive.

Really? So lets balance the power of 30 or 40 hard core western enthusiasts vs. hundreds if not thousands that drive on the east coast up to about 9 hours to get to the track?

It just boils down to out and out appeasement to the west. There is no other way to explain it.

Should I post pictures of the Dearborn conventions again? That was a 14 hour tow for me.

So in LA, you don't want to get out of your pool? Common'. This is all just BS.

I think if you go back in time one of the original goals was to let people run their cars on all the famous and/or big tracks all over the country. The west had a unique place as that is where all the creation/manufacturing/testing of CS cars started. I'm sure there are far more than 30-40 SAAC members in the west - but the national convention may not be a big draw because there is so much other stuff to do with your car. Most people are no longer willing to make the long drive/tow. 14 hours I consider a non event. 43 would have been a 9 hour drive for us from the LA area. We drove the the Mid-Ohio and Dearborn conventions but flew to CT. It compounds the problem since more people don't bring their cars there is less to see so some people may decide to stay home which means less cars less people so then next time it rolls around people remember less cars/people so they decide to stay home. The conventions for us has become a time to visit old friends we have met/known since SAAC 1. It has become not really about the cars for us (especially since so many are now the same because 100% original is desired - we've lost the WOW look at that day 2 mod). We went to Indy last year - no car as we pulled our travel trailer but Indy was on the bucket list - did have fun with the parade laps. How long before there will no longer be a need to rent a track? Fewer and fewer people are not willing to risk a major portion of their retirement fund on the track and who cares about seeing a bunch of late model Mustangs making muffled laps? I'm certain the board will pull the plug on the west when it no longer makes sense to hold a convention here. Their ultimate decision has to be about bringing a convention to each of their membership centers that has a cost effective venue.
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shelbydoug

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #205 on: August 16, 2018, 06:07:31 AM »
DEFEND what you want.

SAAC has always been a coalition. It has varied some over the years but for the most part has been consistent enough to make the formula effective. The formula for determining convention locations hasn't changed and is unlikely to in the near future. Other factors have entered into the decision though that weren't necessarily there before.

The Dearborn conventions are unarguably the largest. The first two didn't have tracks. Ford's Utica test track was "volunteered". One time because Shelby was getting us Dodge's and the powers that be at Ford "wouldn't allow that.

Track availability and AFFORDABILITY for the last 30 years no doubt are our Nemesis?


Yes. Values have changed usages of the cars and will continue to do so.

If you are happy with what is, that's great. I would think that it isn't going to get better or change and probably it isn't even possible to make it any better? The question is, is what IS deteriorating or is it just our perspective or even EXPECTATIONS changed? Does it "depend on what the definition of is, is?" ;)


I said 30 to 40 HARD CORE enthusiasts. Ones that will be there hell or high water. Sure there are others that show up occasionally. Just like dandelion seeds blowing in the wind. So that depends on which direction the wind carries them or whether the fires burn them up or maybe the whale sightings are up? That's fine. Butterflies are free, but the cause of west coast conventions was and is just a demanding of equal time.

There is NO question that the Mini Nats are more important. That is probably the largest factor in the uncertain turn outs to west coast SAAC Conventions.


As far as making suggestions of great ideas, fine, do you volunteer your time and efforts to accomplish that? The staff is a little short handed you know?
« Last Edit: August 16, 2018, 06:39:46 AM by shelbydoug »
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Greg

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #206 on: August 16, 2018, 08:53:13 AM »
There are a lot of interesting perspectives gleaned from this topic. 

I think the common theme is that everyone supports the SAAC and some have a greater concern because they don't want to see the membership dwindle away and then it becomes a "Remember SAAC #10 or 2 or 40 those were the good ole days" conversation.   

The value of the cars has and will effect the SAAC just like any other antique.  As pretty much all restored cars are essentially the same (not criticizing) the "WOW" factor of a day 2 car is gone.  That is why unrestored cars are so hot because they are different and you see what you bought, whiskey dents and all. 

The demographics, not necessarily the people have changed.  At SAAC 1-20 I'm sure everyone was bright eyed and had a great time and were essentially new Shelby owners in their 20's and 30's.  Now a lot of those first attenders have owned a Shelby for 30-40 years and although loved, the honeymoon is over and your in a long term relationship :).  At 70-80 years old I doubt many are going to drive 8-14hours to an event in their car or even interested in towing it like they did when they were 30. 

I say all this to say that the SAAC will evolve because it has too either willingly or not and in the end it will be okay.  I do believe everyone should drive their car and enjoy it while letting your mind flood with memories of your youth.  The grim reaper comes soon enough to us all and the cars will far outlast you and I and many of them will end up in the hands of flippers and will be traded like baseball cards on the auction playground. 

So what do you do, drive it and hurt the value by $50K, yes who cares, the good LORD has loaned it to you for a little while anyway and I promise you aren't going to care in the end.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2018, 08:55:14 AM by Greg »
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kjspeed

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #207 on: August 16, 2018, 09:07:40 AM »
In the wake of SAAC 43 this discussion has shifted to convention related issues, which is certainly a part of what SAAC does, but not the only thing. SAAC is instrumental (indispensable?) in maintaining the integrity of the original 62-70 Shelby automobiles through the registries and registrars as well as facilitating conversation among the members - primarily through this forum. I want that to continue. To do that SAAC needs to be financially viable.

If you go to the SAAC Memberlodge About page, which was written in 2009 you'll read this:

"The Shelby American Automobile Club was founded in 1975. It presently has approximately 4,000 members in the U.S. and another 500 around the rest of the world.When it comes to Cobras and Shelby Mustangs, if we don't know it, it's probably not worth knowing, While SAAC has continually evolved over the past 34 years, its basic reason for existence has not changed since that very first day. The club is dedicated to the preservation, care, history and enjoyment of the World Championship Cars built or inspired by Shelby American."

If you are a member and go to the Members Directory you'll see that the current membership is about half what it was 9 years ago (assuming the directory web function is correct). Registered users on this forum is only about half of that. That's not a lot of financial support for a national club that's been around since 1975. When you consider the cost of publishing the annuals, there can't be much left.

We all have a vested interest in keeping SAAC viable and I hope we can work with the "powers that be" to make that happen. It sure would be nice if one or more of them would chime in...
« Last Edit: August 16, 2018, 09:09:20 AM by kjspeed »
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Chad

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #208 on: August 16, 2018, 11:05:40 AM »
As far as the running of the club is concerned Iíll say this. I think Iím getting more than my moneyís worth with the quarterly Shelby American online, the annual print edition, the service of the Registrars, and the publicity and prestige that SAAC brings to our cars. Plus the opportunity to attend a convention each year if I choose. Iím a happy member.

If someone has suggestions for how to improve things, then by all means send them to SAAC HQ. Iím not against change for the better.

About the conventions. I believe there was a survey sometime in the last year or two that polled our members for input. The results were tabulated and made available. I know at one time there were some specific numbers given about where our members live and convention attendance in various parts of the country. As I recall, that information was quite detailed, and included some discussion of the finances involved in putting on these events. But I donít know if that was part of the poll results or presented at some other time. (BTW, I always wondered why we couldnít have a convention here in Texas. After reviewing that data I understood.) Maybe someone can find that survey info and post it here.

If someone has ideas on how to improve the conventions, please send them to SAAC HQ. I have no illusions about every idea being accepted. Many wonít be practical for financial or other reasons. But if a hundred suggestions are submitted and three are implemented, that would still be worthwhile.

For what itís worth, I donít think the people in control of SAAC read this forum Ė or at least not very often. If you have a question or suggestion for them I suggest you email them directly. All their email addresses are on the SAAC.com site. But donít expect an immediate response from them during the month before or after a convention. Theyíre pretty busy around that time.

And just so youíll know, I have no affiliation with SAAC management. Iím just a member like most of the others here on the forum. And like many of you, I sometimes feel compelled to share my thoughts with the group.

My 2 cents.
Steve


I completely agree.  I think all this talk can be contributed to the society we live in now.  A lot of people in this country are un happy with everything, nothing is fare!  Well then go start your own club and quit bitching!!!!!!!!!

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Re: The future of the SAAC
« Reply #209 on: August 16, 2018, 11:19:56 AM »
+1 kjspeed and chad  !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!