Revised August 2022
Carolina Mountain Club offers various club-wide activities during the year to provide opportunities for members and guests to socialize and have fun together. Currently there are two such activities.
One is the Spring Social and is open to members and guests from across the club’s areas of interests. Usually held at the NC Arboretum, participants can gather, hike, dine, and enjoy a program, usually a speaker or panel, for the evening. Attendees pay for their dinner, and there is usually a cash bar.
The other is the Annual Meeting. This is intended for members only, although membership is not required for attending. It is comprised of a social hour, dinner, business meeting, awards presentation, and a program, usually a speaker. Attendees wishing to dine pay for their dinner and there is usually a cash bar. The Council invites special guests from groups we work with such as the Forest Service and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. The club pays for the dinners for these guests as a thank you for the association we have with them. The usual pattern is to hold the Annual Meeting one year in the Hendersonville area and the following year in the Asheville vicinity.
In addition, the Hiking Committee plans and hosts an annual Hike Leaders’ Dinner and the Trail Maintainers hold an Annual Picnic for Trail Maintainers.
Other club-wide activities may be planned in the future as interest and coordination permit.
The following pages are attachments for planning specific events.
- Attachment 1: Procedures for Planning CMC’s Annual Dinner and Meeting (12.18, dpj)
- Attachment 2: Procedures for the Spring Social (11.17, ll)
- Attachment 3: Procedures for Hike leaders’ Dinner (1.19, gab)
- Attachment 4: Procedures for Trail Maintainers’ Picnic (1.19, rwn)
Attachment 1 – Procedures for Planning the Annual Dinner and Meeting
Process Notes: Planning and Conducting the CMC Annual Dinner
- According to the by-laws, the Vice President is responsible for planning the Annual Dinner and Meeting. During the event, the Vice President is responsible for conducting the event, with the exception that the President is responsible for conducting the Annual Meeting. The President may agree to manage the other portions in addition to the formal meeting as well.
- The President is responsible for developing the agenda, for providing copies of the Treasurer's Report, slate of nominees, and other pertinent documents on each tables, and for conducting the meeting.
DATE AND VENUE
- Begin early in the calendar year to set the date for the dinner and reserve a venue. Usually it is held on the first weekend in November but it may be held the second weekend. Plan on either Friday or Saturday night.
- Typical timing is 5:30 for the Social Hour, 6:30 for the dinner and challenge award presentations, and 7:30 for the Business Meeting followed by the program. Everything is usually finished by about 9:00.
- Start early in choosing a venue, as their schedules fill up quickly. Be working on this in February, and by late March have a proposal for circulation to Council by email as this falls between quarterly Council meetings. If there are multiple venues to be considered, Council may be presented with a synopsis of each and asked to rank their choices. Ultimately though, it is the decision of the Vice President to select the venue.
- Venue considerations include whether to hold it in or near Asheville vs. Hendersonville (consider alternating year by year), whether to use a venue that can produce the dinner there vs. dealing with an outside caterer, how adult beverages can be provided. Note that venues requiring an outside caterer entails separate arrangements for room rental, linens, china, etc. that make planning more time-consuming.
- At the second Council meeting of the year (usually May) present information about the venue chosen and the price per diner to be charged for the meal. Council then votes to approve the price, and in some instances, may choose to charge less than the actual price charged by the venue and to offset the difference, if needed, from the Annual Dinner budget.
- After Council’s approval, notify all contenders, including the venue chosen and those not chosen. Meet with the venue and draw up a contract specifying cost per person including tax and gratuity, whether there is a guaranteed headcount required by the venue, and the amount of deposit required. Have the treasurer pay the deposit to the venue by the date required.
- It is customary to invite to the Annual Dinner representatives from some of the public agencies we work with such as NC Forest Service, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, etc. These individuals are invited to attend, with their spouses/significant others and the club pays for their dinners.
- There is a working list of invitees from the previous year, which should be circulated to Council prior to the August meeting for suggestions on who should be invited to the up-coming dinner. Once the list is decided at the August meeting, a mailed invitation is sent out by mid-August, giving RSVP information and deadline.
- Often it is desirable to send a second letter late in September to those not responding by the deadline, encouraging a reply.
SPEAKER / PROGRAM
- Following the conclusion of the business meeting, there is a program which lasts between 30-45 minutes. The program should be something of interest to club members. It is the responsibility of the Vice President to choose a speaker, although Council input may be encouraged. Dinner for the speaker and spouse/significant other is paid for by the club, but there is no honorarium paid.
PUBLICIZING THE ANNUAL DINNER AND MEETING
- At the August Council meeting, decide on the cut-off dates for registering for the dinner/meeting online and a "mail by" date for those registering by hard copy. Allow several days between the cutoff and the event to update the venue with the expected number of attendees (including invited guests). In the case someone pays but needs to cancel their reservation, refunds after the cut-off for registering will not be made.
- Let's Go! and the CMC website are the primary means of publicizing the event, although eNews, Facebook, etc. may be used.
- Publicity should begin in August, and the 4th quarter Let's Go should focus on the event. That publication should have an article about the event, it's location and possibly driving directions, information on how to sign up for the dinner, and two inserts. One insert is the nomination form for the Distinguished Service Award and the Award of Appreciation. The other insert has the Reservation for Annual Meeting and Dinner on one side and the club's Membership Application on the other. As these inserts are quite useful, it would be helpful if the PDF version of Let's Go! included them as well.
CLOSER TO THE DINNER/MEETING
- Ask the database manager to maintain a spreadsheet of those registered for the event and to notify the Vice President of the number at intervals during registration. Several days before the event, the database needs to go to the VP for the production of nametags for club members and special guests.
- Ask the treasurer to put Annual Dinner in the list of web options after a member has signed in and to activate the online payment option. Determine when this payment option should be turned off. Ask the Challenge Committee Chair to prepare for challenge completion presentations.
- Talk with the speaker to determine a title for the program, technology needs, and information helpful in introducing him/her.
- Meet at the venue to review timing, room layout, serving process, adult beverages, and technology such as microphone, screen projection, etc.
- It is helpful for the individuals who will be responsible for some part of the evening's event to sit together at a table that will be called first to the buffet line. This is in order that they are able to finish eating in time. Notify those people and tell them where that table will be located.
- Update the venue about the expected number dining.
- Find volunteers to staff the sign-in table to greet people as they come in, check off names on the database printout, and hand out nametags. Have some CMC business cards and car decals available to give out, plus some CMC patches to sell. Two teams of two will ensure the table is manned from 15 minutes prior to the social hour until partway into the dining hour.
Attachment 2 – Procedures for Planning the Spring Social
Attachment 3 – Procedures for Planning the Hike Leaders’ Dinner
Hiking Committee agrees on a date for the next Educational Program and dinner. The Committee Chair assumes responsibility for finding a venue and establishing the dinner menu. Typically, the Educational Program occurs during the last Friday of February and the Club pays the cost of the dinner.
Hiking Committee agrees on the educational portion of the program and the Committee Chair submits a budget to the Treasurer for the cost of the dinner.
Committee Chair notifies all CMC Hiker Leaders to watch for invitation for Program in eNews. Eligible Hike Leaders include all the individuals from the previous year and the first quarter of the year in which the Program will be held.
Hiking Committee meets and finalizes agenda for Program and agrees on the list of invitees, including any guests. The list is obtained by data collected from the Hike Schedulers. The Committee Chair sends out invitations during the second week in January with an agreed upon cut-off date. A second reminder is sent the last week in January. Since cost of the dinner is based on the number of attendees, an exact number of participants is essential. The Committee also solicits door prizes from local vendors and others.
Hiking Committee: (1) Identifies a volunteer to Emcee Program, (2) Identifies two volunteers for registration table to distribute name-tags for those who have pre-registered, (3) Identifies a volunteer to coordinate logistics for door prize drawing, (4) Insures speaker and times are compatible with agenda, and (5) Determines technology needs (microphone, computer, screen and projector).
Hike Leaders Educational Program and dinner.
Attachment 4: Procedures for Planning the Trail Maintainers’ Picnic
The Maintenance Committee holds an annual picnic, open to all Maintenance Crew members and AT/MST Section Maintainers, wives/significant others and children on the third Saturday in September. It is currently being held at Lake Julian Park. The Club provides grilled fare and drinks while attendees are requested to bring munchies, salads, casseroles and deserts. Live music has been provided to date.