Michael Sutter, MCAA Chairman
While it may seem a while ago for you, it is very recent for me. You see I am writing this article just a couple weeks after our MCAA Midyear meetings in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. I think we had very productive meetings and set the direction of the MCAA for the next year.
The committee meetings were very successful in setting their goals under the leadership of Paul Odom, our Vice-Chairman. The speed dating sessions with our industry partners were as informative as always. I heard from suppliers that they were very pleased with the attendance and purchases made at these one on one meetings.
Our business meeting and networking round tables were very well attended and led by Andy Sneed and Adam Waltho. This year, per requests of members, we broke out into smaller groups and reported back to the whole group. It was felt that more members would share more in a smaller group. I have to agree that this method worked very well.
While we accomplished much in our meetings, we also managed to have a pretty good time as well. Our events started with our cattle drive on Saturday where Gary Joyner showed us all about being a cowboy. He not only looked the part but showed us he can also walk the walk!
Our opening night reception on the top of Mt. Werner was fabulous. The dinner was great, the people were awesome and what can I say about that sunset? You don’t get the opportunity to see that every day. The golf outing was a huge success with a beautiful and challenging course and also raised quite a bit of money for our PEC. Thanks to Todd Fredrick for putting this together and running the tournament.
A group of ladies rented Pedego bikes and went on a 17 mile ride through downtown and on trails along the Yampa river. When they finished, they said they could do another 17 miles! You see the Pedego bikes are electric assisted and provide a little help when you need it. I heard the next day Mark Kemp got a bike up to 35 mph! They were so impressed that 9 bikes were purchased and sent to our homes.
The closing dinner on Wednesday night at Saddleback Ranch was memorable for not only the food, drink and entertainment but also the opportunity to see that Gary and Shelly Joyner are quite the western dancers! It was fun watching people showing off their roping skills and the horse drawn wagon was a great way to get up to the lodge.
The one thing I always tell new members is if you can only attend one meeting, make it the Midyear meeting. It is much smaller and more intimate than the convention in Las Vegas. This is where you make new friends that can last a lifetime or catch up with old friends that you may not have seen in a while. It was great seeing first time attendees Shane Gilchrist, Mason Hill and Melvin Schwendeman at their first Midyear meeting and they all said they wouldn’t miss another one! The networking that happens during this time in invaluable.
I must say that Colleen and I were more than a little nervous about how this small little western town in a valley in the middle of the Rocky Mountains would compare to last year’s meetings in Scottsdale, AZ. Well we found out there is no comparison as these are both very different locations. I heard nothing but good things about our time there but if you have suggestions on how we can make these events even better please let us know.
Just one more thing, thanks for the “special gift” you gave me at the committee meetings Danks Burton!