New England Walkers Annual meeting Oct. 31, 2010
New England Walkers members agreed at their annual meeting to help sponsor and conduct the Canadian-American Junior Racewalking Competition next summer in the Boston area. Members also reelected officers, received a treasurer’s report, outlined a Grand Prix schedule for 2011, and discussed club clothing, possible racewalking clinics, and the best ways to recognize volunteers and sponsors.
Steve Vaitones told the group that the Canadian-American Junior meet has been held for the past 22 years, alternating between Canada and the United States, but never in Boston. The meet has a 10K for men and a 5K for women and allows unlimited guest competitors, which means that other areas that nurture young walkers, such as Maine and Ireland, could send participants. An all-comers race could be held in conjunction with the meet, with the race fee going toward the overall expenses. The date would be somewhere between the third week in July and the second week in August.
Many tasks lie ahead: finding a site, putting together a budget, scheduling such responsibilities as pedestrian control, coordinating meals, refreshment, and lodging, and managing volunteers. The club voted to declare its interest in helping put on the event and to commit $500 to the cause, and Tom Knatt said he would draw up a chart outlining duties for volunteers.
Tom read the club treasurer’s report submitted by Justin Kuo, which said we have $6,684.49 in our Sovereign Bank account, and then promptly collected $18 more from members who had been lax in paying their $6 annual dues.
Tom led a discussion about obtaining New England Walkers T-shirts and sweatshirts, which he said would make good gifts to race sponsors. Steve said he would explore sources of inexpensive clothing. Members voted to acquire clothing of some kind.
Members also voted approval of a list of Grand Prix races that includes the newly announced Eastern Masters Indoor 3K in Providence on Jan. 30, the Dartmouth Relays 1-mile, and our customary events: the Greater Boston Track Club and New England Indoor 3Ks, the Clamdigger 5K, the New Hampshire Seacoast outdoor 5K, the 10K Nationals in Albany, the New England Outdoor and Bay State Games 3Ks, the Eastern Masters Outdoor 5K, the One-Hour Nationals, and the Connecticut 10K. Competitors can also include a result from one other national or international race (such as one of the World Masters events in Sacramento next summer). Members also voted to solicit other events, especially one in Maine, to broaden the geographic range.
Members discussed having New Hampshire-based Olympian Joanne Dow conduct a racewalking clinic, perhaps at the Canadian- American meet or perhaps at the University of New Hampshire, where she spends much of her time. Tom said he would explore the possibilities with her.
Club members discussed whether to extend complimentary membership to those who conduct or volunteer at races. Beth Katcher said it is best just to thank people, and to waive dues for those whose activities bring in funds (such as volunteering at the Tufts 10K and the Corporate Challenge). On the subject of recognizing sponsors, veteran race organizers Steve Vaitones and Joe Light stressed the value of sending personal thank-you notes.
The club reelected its officers: Tom Knatt, president; Beth Katcher, vice president; Brian Savilonis, member at large; Justin Kuo, treasurer; Charlie Mansbach, recording secretary.
Present at the meeting were Tom Knatt, Annie Montgomery, Beth Katcher, Bill Harriman, Joanne Harriman, Bob Ullman, Joe Light, Brian Savilonis, Ann Neuburg, Ruth Karacek, Steve Vaitones, Paul Schell, Charlie Mansbach.
The meeting was preceded by informal 5K and 10K racewalks on the Groton rail trail and our traditional potluck lunch, hosted graciously as always by Tom Knatt and Annie Montgomery.