Official 2019 Steel Soldiers Georgia Rally (19SSGR) - Georgia Military Vehicle Rally

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clinto

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I have a date but there are some last minute discussions about prices and park access and I don't want everyone reserving spots if D-town and I can't come to an agreement.

I'm sorry folks. I'm working on this as much as I can.
 

sandcobra164

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Clinto,
I think I speak for many when I say "We have no idea what goes on behind the scenes" as it pertains to putting on a GA Rally. Many of us are also aware that Durhamtown has gotten dinged with an expensive lawsuit / judgement that doesn't pertain to us but they're looking to make up revenue somewhere. They've scraped up a few dollars from us over the years and it's gotten quite a bit costlier over the past few. I've had some great times going there and most of them being the journey going 190 miles each way. If you make a deal with them, cool. If you don't, spend some time researching an alternative. I'm well aware that is a difficult task and alot of the older crowd who enjoyed a Welcome Provider that Durhamtown once was. Personally, I paid $20 times 3 for wristbands for my wife and boys to enter the field last year for a walking lap around. $60 for Friday afternoon just so Lee and the boys could walk around and say "Hey" to geographically displaced friends who we only see during this trip. That doesn't include the $750 for the cabin rental, $20 for my wristband and another $20 or so to ride the trails as a "Spectator". I try not to add it all up but I'm cursed with a photographic memory. Cabin rental was on par for previous years, other fees, always an extra couple of 20's needed to comply. I know it sounds petty if you have money to spend on owning old MV's but after upkeep, fuel, etc, we are tapped out as well. I'll keep coming because I Love the people who keep Soldiering on year after year. The number of members who attend has dropped the last few years because of the constant fees. I believe we had a high of 130 trucks a few years ago but we were at a 1/3 of that last year. I know you've made your point, the ball is in Durhamtowns court. Please let us know how it goes.
 

clinto

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re: Sandcobra's entire comment

I have repeatedly tried to explain to D-town, both in terms of the owner and the management, that the HMV hobby has a demographic aspect to it that can't be ignored.

A literal ton of us are refugees from the antique car hobby. I can't afford $20K paintjobs, $10K interiors and sending a shoebox of pot metal trim out for $6K any more. And that means we're on a limited budget. And there are tons of people like me in the hobby.

And a lot of people in the hobby are retired, so fixed incomes and such.

And that you can price your event out of existence. I have said this to them until I was blue in the face.

And the fact of the matter is that they don't care. If they charge us so much money that we just say "hey, we had a good run" and stop coming, they'll just go raise the prices on some of their other events.

I explained this Sunday that in a 5-10 year period, prices have gone up 400-500% and that I could guarantee no one's wages have gone up 500% in that time period. Their argument was that the facility was under-valued in the early years of the rally. Essentially they weren't charging us enough.

Since I don't have access to their internal data about ROI, profit-per-acre, etc., there's no way for me to argue against that viewpoint. I'd like to say I disagree with it but I don't know enough about their facility and it's overhead or how much profit per acre, per employee, etc., they need to make.

In terms of alternatives, I would have moved the event since 2012. The list of complaints I have is a mile long. Changing our event date, interfering with the convoy, changing prices, unprofessional behavior, etc. Unfortunately, it's hard to find one place that has all these things:

Trails big enough for 5 tons
Trails designed for our stuff (no one is gonna' Moab style rock crawl a 5 ton)
A field for swap meet, eating, camping and hanging out that has some shade, some flatness, some power and water, etc.
Some cabins and RV spots for those that don't wanna' sleep in a deuce
A shower facility for the campers


I can find alternative venues all day that have one or two of those attributes. But a venue that has all that? So far, I've come up blank.


I understand the costs. I have a cabin from Wednesday to Sunday and armbands (driver or passenger) and it adds up. And I'm lucky, my drive is short. Heck, I'd trailer my Honda out there and drive home every night if I didn't need to be there in the event of an emergency. With a 50 mile commute in a 35 mpg vehicle, I'd save $300 and get to sleep in my own bed.

My hope is that if we can get them to sign a contract, showing exactly what the prices will be, that will end the confusion and everyone getting charged different amounts and people will know what to expect when they show up. And if our POC can convince the ownership to give us access to this new area, there will be hundreds of acres of new trails and a river crossing

My truck is due for hub service anyway, so I'll definitely take part in that
 

Elijah95

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Wait, so we aren’t automatically granted access to the Jeep 3 trails? I thought all Jeep trails were game. It almost makes you want to become UNCIVILIZED. I’ll hold my tongue for now. Thanks for what you do


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clinto

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Wait, so we aren’t automatically granted access to the Jeep 3 trails? I thought all Jeep trails were game. It almost makes you want to become UNCIVILIZED. I’ll hold my tongue for now. Thanks for what you do


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Just the new part no one has seen yet. They cleared a new section of 300-400 acres. But the trails are small. Jeep small. I requested they open them up for us and there is significant resistance.
 

wheelspinner

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Clinto I know we have talked before about this-but sacrificing the quality of the event because of having trails big enough for a 5 ton is just not a good outcome. Yes it’s fun, yes the trucks are big-but realistically how many people use that trail ability as their barometer for attending or not attending (sorry Eli don’t flame me).

We have a great get together in Denton NC with everything but the trail rides. No one goes away disappointed. The park is wide open and one of the fun parts is sharing your vehicle with a friend who doesn’t have what you have or driving something you’ve never been able to.

My opinion of DT has really gone downhill after enjoying Denton so damned much.

I know I know the history but like Joseph said-seeing friends and hanging out is a major part of why MOST people do this.

JMHO for what it’s worth
 

Elijah95

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Clinto I know we have talked before about this-but sacrificing the quality of the event because of having trails big enough for a 5 ton is just not a good outcome. Yes it’s fun, yes the trucks are big-but realistically how many people use that trail ability as their barometer for attending or not attending (sorry Eli don’t flame me).

We have a great get together in Denton NC with everything but the trail rides. No one goes away disappointed. The park is wide open and one of the fun parts is sharing your vehicle with a friend who doesn’t have what you have or driving something you’ve never been able to.

My opinion of DT has really gone downhill after enjoying Denton so damned much.

I know I know the history but like Joseph said-seeing friends and hanging out is a major part of why MOST people do this.

JMHO for what it’s worth
No flame necessary lol I can vouch for at least 3 families, myself included that would back out without access to trails to ride. That’s what we come for, the brotherhood and ability to go tear stuff up.

I have systematically wedged and ran over stuff countless times to shoehorn my trucks places


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wheelspinner

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No flame necessary lol I can vouch for at least 3 families, myself included that would back out without access to trails to ride. That’s what we come for, the brotherhood and ability to go tear stuff up.

I have systematically wedged and ran over stuff countless times to shoehorn my trucks places


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What do you consider “access” ? Uwharrie National Forest is 35 mins away, and free as long as the truck is registered.
There may be other locations that could work with local but not “direct” access.
 

sandcobra164

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Clinto,
I doubt you took my post as criticism but I'll apologize just in case. I'm sure you voiced the concerns of the members who regularly attend to the Durhamtown crew. I have no real surprise that it fell on deaf ears for the most part. They are inconsistent on stuff at best but it's an awesome location with lodging available in the middle of nowhere. I will agree with Patrick's (Wheelspinner's) comment that I do mostly come just to meet and greet. I think the last time I took one of my own trucks on a trail was in 2015 when my friends doubted my M1028 could climb "Slippery Nipple" on the skinny tires. I briefed them that it has lockers in both axles stock and up the hill it went. I mostly come to hang out and see friends I'm geographically distanced from and to see if I can spend some money at the vendors venue. I do enjoy the trail rides but it's not a deal breaker for me. Honestly, I loved when we could have a huge bonfire in the middle of the main field but I'm sure there are some people who didn't like that. In Life you can't please everybody, you gotta please yourself. I'm low key and will continue to participate since it's the only "hard run" my truck gets to participate on. It pulls heavy stuff from time to time but it never gets to go 600 miles in a 4 day period with 450 of those being at 55 to 60 mph. My family gets a chance to see people and most of the long term attendees have seen my boys from age 1/2 and 3 through 10 and 13 so far. This year will be 12 and 14 depending on the dates.
 

Elijah95

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What do you consider “access” ? Uwharrie National Forest is 35 mins away, and free as long as the truck is registered.
There may be other locations that could work with local but not “direct” access.
Sounds interesting! I hope my comment didn’t come across as snad or “if I don’t get my way I’m not coming” etc because at the end of the day I’m merely a drop in the barrel compared to our entire family of green. Steel soldiers has brought a whole new light to my world with the folks I’ve met


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