June 18, 2012 09:34 AM
MCA National Director
MCA does not intentionally schedule it's National and Grand National Events to conflict with other major shows. The dates for National Shows are requested by the clubs applying for the shows with the exception of the GN. The host clubs make those choices. The Long Island Show in June of 2011, conflicted with the Mid-America Shelby gathering in Tulsa. Mid-America show staff contacted MCA and asked if we could move the Long Island show so as not to conflict with them. Unfortunately when the long Island Club applied for their show in 2009, no one knew there would be a conflict with the Mid-America meet. With contracts signed with venues and such, moving the event was simply not an option.
The Show Guidelines recommend that show dates are at least greater than 3 weeks away from another National Show. The GN has historically been held on Labor Day weekend. I can only recall two where it was not on Labor Day and I've been attending the National Shows since 1991. The club in Sturgis chose to have their event on Labor Day when they organized their first Rally a number of years ago. They subsequently applied for an MCA Charter and were granted one. They currently have an application pending for a National Show in 2014 that will also be on Labor Day weekend if approved. It will not be billed as a GN. There will not be an MCA GN in 2014 because of the 50th.
Of the Major sponsors you mentioned only Shelby is an MCA Corporate sponsor, but even at that, although we provide them with a list of MCA National Events, we can not force them to go to any particular event. We tell them that the host club will provide them space, advertisment, and promotion, but that said, their own marketing people tell them where to go to get the biggest bang for the buck. I feel you are being unfair to blame MCA for something it has no real control over.
Do we need to do a better job in the future? You bet. Will it be easy to put together a structure to prevent inequities? No, but we can try. Shorty Brown is now the National Show Chair and he and his committee will be looking at these and other issues to help prevent or eliminate them in the future.
June 18, 2012 03:30 PM
I have the show history database of when and where all Nationals and Grand Nationals have been held that Randy Jacobson put together back in 2006. It's interesting to see that it wasn't until 1982 that a Grand National was held on Labor Day Weekend. From 1976 to 2006, 13 Grand Nationals were not held on Labor Day Weekend. There also are a good number of years when no Grand National was held at all, either because there was a special anniversary show, or in earlier years, it simply didn't happen.
What's especially interesting in this database is to see that in 1986, 1989, and 1990, dual Grand Nationals were held on the same weekend. In 1986 and 1990 they were dual Western and Eastern shows, whereas in 1989, they were dual Eastern and Central shows.
June 18, 2012 05:43 PM
In the past, we had local car clubs planning shows on the same dates. The other clubs didn't know anything until the rival flyers came out. To help streamline things, we created a "car club council" with representatives from each local club. Several years ago we created an online events calendar where every club could see what the other club was planning. There were always one or two that didn't get posted and landed up drawing crowd from another show, but overall it worked well. (Sadly, our council collapsed this year due to lack of participation.)
In that spirit, I propose an online MCA event planning calendar that anyone can see and use to pick a date for their show. Any club wanting to hold a National, Regional or local show could check the calendar first and see any MCA event (or non MCA for that matter) scheduled for the next several years. The events could be flagged as "tentative" or "in process" so dates could be reserved and negotiated prior to large cash investments in venues and advertising. (It should also list any holidays, so we can plan around religions and increased gas prices.)
The current list of events on the site is very informative, but a true visual calendar is much easier for planning, and could contain events other than the MCA sanctioned ones on the current event list.
Just an idea.......
Lane Butler, MCA # 10007
2003 Sonic Blue Cobra Convertible
1967 restomod coupe
1965 fastback, stripped for restoration
June 18, 2012 07:51 PM
MCA National Director
Thanks for filling in the blanks. Now that I think back I remember three but that is since I joined MCA in the mid 90s. Personally, I don't think the GN has to be on any particular date. Couple that with a lot of discussion asking what makes the GN any different than a regular National. There has been a call for several years now asking how can the GN be made truely Grand. No one has yet come up with the magic recipe.
June 18, 2012 11:20 PM
I like the idea of a more active, long-range calendar. It's something that we should be able to do.
And, we do really need to establish what makes a Grand National "Grand." We've discussed it a lot, but we still don't have anything really concrete.
June 19, 2012 08:38 AM
There were lots of ideas (some good, some not so good) on this topic posted in this thread a couple of years back but alas they languish in committee purgatory.
Originally Posted by 390pony