Request for Proposals — WeSTOC Site Selection
Ever had it in your mind that YOU would like to become a WeSTOC Disorganizer? WeSTOC Disorganizers are widely known and respected as leaders in the STOC community, folks with the willingness and wherewithal to take on a daunting task that benefits all of ST-Riderdom. WeSTOC Disorganizers earn the respect of their fellow ST-Riders by putting on the really big show, the ultimate gathering of the STOC Clans, the annual WeSTOC event.
Once you have successfully earned the title of WeSTOC Disorganizer, you will be inducted into the exclusive inner circle known as the WeSTOC Emeritus Council, and will have input into the selection and operation of future WeSTOC events.
“Sure, I want all those rewards, like fame and recognition, and being known as a leader among the STOC clans. But how do I become a WeSTOC Disorganizer?”
Happy you asked! Here’s how:
- Carefully read and re-read this document!
- Decide where you would like to host a WeSTOC event.
- Put together your principal Disorganizing team.
- Research and write your proposal.
- Forward your proposal to the Site Selection Chairman.
- Attend the next WeSTOC.
- If your proposal is accepted, work your ass off to live up to the standards set by past Disorganizers and put on the beST ever WeSTOC!
That’s all there is to it!
Here are the rules and some guidelines and tips for a successful proposal, and the procedure that will be used to pick the successful applicant.
Rule: WeSTOC, which is the premier STOC event and also the weSTern meeting of the STOC clans, SHALL BE HELD in one of the 11 western states of the continental USA or in one of the two western provinces of Canada, namely: Montana, Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico, Idaho, Utah, Arizona, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, California, Alberta, British Columbia.
Guidelines and Tips: The site proposed should offer a good variety of riding opportunities and also activities for non-riding family members. This could include things like a pool in the hotel used, historical or cultural activities nearby, etc. A location where there can be a tie-in with a cooperative local Honda dealer for obtaining service and sponsorship is plus. Nearby camping facilities for those members who prefer to camp is a plus.
Rule: WeSTOC is a four-day, three night event, with the arrival day being the first day, and the departure day being the last day of the four days. WeSTOC starts at hotel check-in time on the first day of the event, and ends at hotel checkout time on the fourth day of the event.
Guidelines: For several years, WeSTOC has been held as a mid-week event, with arrival day being a Tuesday, and departure day a Friday. While this is not a rule, this timing has been found to provide several advantages, such as lower mid-week hotel rates and the ability for distant attendees to make it to WeSTOC using a one-week vacation period. Note: In the past there has been discussion about tying the timing of WeSTOC to other events, such as the HSTA STAR event. Be aware that WeSTOC is a major, standalone event, and no extra consideration will be given to proposals attempting to tie WeSTOC to any other event’s timing. The WEC is open to the event being held anytime from July through mid-September, but will consider factors such as the anticipated weather in your location, and the weather that likely attendees will have to ride through at your proposed time, in making the site decision.
Rule: WeSTOC shall be held at suitable accommodations.
Guidelines: The hotel venue has ranged from first class accommodations to middle of the road Best Western-type properties. The hotel should be open to hosting a motorcycle rally. We have wonderful references relative to the niceness and responsibility quotient for WeSTOC attendees. Keep in mind that WeSTOC normally attracts 175 or more participants, depending on location. It is advantageous to select a single hotel or lodge that can offer a block of at least 85 or more double rooms. Properties that are modern, clean and well-kept are required, and those that are reasonably priced are preferred. Look for a good value in the hotel accommodations. Amenities such as free breakfasts and free happy hours are definite pluses. Properties that have built-in restaurants, bars, conference facilities, and are in close proximity to additional facilities are a plus.
Try not to select a location or facility that has a major event going on in the area at the same time, as that will tend to limit your choice of properties and drive up prices for WeSTOC attendees. If a smaller property is the only thing available, alternate and additional overflow properties should be available in close proximity to the main hotel. The headquarters hotel must agree to provide a room block at discounted rates to be held until at least one month in advance of the event. Remember, room rates and extra hotel-provided amenities are always negotiable with most hotel properties!
Guidelines: The headquarters hotel should have sufficient conference facilities, including a large enough meeting room/gathering space to allow for the entire group to comfortably gather and mingle. This space (or spaces) should be available for the major events of WeSTOC, including the opening meetings and closing banquet (if held at the HQ hotel). The large gathering spaces should have provision for a loudspeaker/PA system in good working condition. Additionally, space for registration facilities must be available. The property should have good, secure parking facilities that have no restrictions on people gathering and tire kicking. It is highly preferable if the hotel management will agree to allow us to close off and dedicate a section of the available parking facility for exclusive use of our group and our motorcycles. A part of the WeSTOC tradition has been to offer a bike-washing station. The hotel normally supplies the water, hoses, and sometimes even a tent shelter for the station. The WeSTOC disorganizers supply soap, towels, etc.
Guidelines: In addition to the timing, location and facilities, you will need to coordinate ride information, clothing sales, the various eating events such as the closing banquet, and myriad other details. Examine yourself carefully. Are you prepared to commit the substantial amount of time and energy it takes to make WeSTOC successful? Do you have the organizational skills required? Please do not volunteer to take on this responsibility unless you are prepared to follow through with the commitment required.
Additional Considerations and Guidelines:
Rule: There must be at least two primary disorganizers on your team. A husband and wife team qualifies, but to protect against job changes, family emergencies and other conflicts, two unrelated people (or two husband/wife teams) are preferred. At least one primary disorganizer (the Head Honcho / proposal submitter) must have previously attended one, and preferably more than one, WeSTOC events in the last three years. For the proposal to be taken seriously, the successful primary disorganizer will be a respected STOC member known to follow through on his/her commitments. Having a current member of the WEC on your disorganization team is a definite plus.
Members of the WeSTOC Emeritus Council have made the commitment to assist new disorganizers in making WeSTOC an ongoing success.
“OK, I think I have a great idea for WeSTOC, and I’m prepared to commit to carrying it off, with a little help from my friends. What do I do now?”
Here’s what you need to do:
Research your idea
- This means; consider the site you have in mind carefully. Go and talk to the conference manager at the hotel you have in mind, and get preliminary pricing, and if possible a pre-commitment on the dates you are proposing and the additional facilities the hotel will provide. Since you’re going to be bringing a lot of revenue into the venue, don’t be afraid to negotiate for things like free conference rooms, free hospitality suites, etc. Ask for a lot, they’ll negotiate you down. If the dates you have in mind don’t work for the hotel, consider other dates and/or other hotels in the vicinity. Put together a list of the positives and negatives of the site. Consider what you like as an attendee, as well as your sense of what other attendees have preferred in the past.
- Consider and roughly lay out a set of rides in the area. A good guideline is to have at least one, and preferably two or more, of each short, medium, and long day rides. Consider and record the natural and or scenic value of the area, and how much boring territory needs to be crossed before getting to the “good stuff.” You should have enough variety so that attendees can have two different day rides to do of a given length. Consider rider and passenger comfort on the rides, such as availability of rest stops, traffic, etc.
- Consider and record the additional opportunities in the area, such as sightseeing, cultural sites, etc.
- Again, consider your own ability and commitment to carrying it off.
Create Your Proposal – This is where you sell your idea to the WEC!
- Create a written proposal or a private website outlining your idea, proposed dates, locations, facilities and documenting the contacts you’ve made.
- Your proposal should contain estimates of the hotel rates (obtained from the conference manager) being offered and documentation of the contact you made and any preliminary commitment you obtained from the headquarters hotel that the dates you proposed are available. You should also include the terms under which the hotel is prepared to hold rooms for WeSTOC upon acceptance of your proposal by the Emeritus Council. Pictures or other descriptive material, such as website references or brochures from the property should be attached to the proposal. Sell us on the property.
- Your proposal should contain a description of the area; it’s scenic value and the interest it offers to attendees. If possible, pictures illustrating high points in the area should be included. In other words, sell us on the area and the riding opportunities.
- Your proposal should contain a short description of each of the principle disorganizers, their background and qualifications. In other words, sell us on your ability to pull it off.
- Include anything else you feel will help sell your proposal to the WEC.
- Include the full name and address of the principal proposal submitter, and email addresses of all proposed disorganizers, for proposal receipt notification purposes.
Remember, the more time and effort you put into your proposal, the more likely you will be to have the successful one.
Here are some additional thoughts to help you create your proposal, factors that the WEC will take into consideration when selecting the successful proposal:
- Leadership — The WEC will take into consideration the demonstrated ability of the proposed lead disorganizers to successfully execute the event. We would suggest including a current WEC member on your team — because you can’t imagine how much time and effort goes into a WeSTOC event, and it will be reassuring to the WEC to know that an experienced hand is part of the disorganization leadership. While you don’t need to have all of the bases covered, your proposal should demonstrate that you’ve given thought to WeSTOC amenities (e.g., spousal entertainment, etc.), any special events unique to your WeSTOC, clothing production and distribution, banquet menu and cost, overall budget management (including registration fees), etc.
- Great Rides – The heart of a great WeSTOC has always meant access to great riding opportunities. Be prepared to illustrate access to a variety of interesting riding opportunities as an integral part of your proposal.
- Location — New locations, or locations we haven’t been to for awhile, will be a factor in awarding the WeSTOC event. As of 2014, WeSTOC has been in held in all western states except Arizona, and Wyoming. The ten most recent WeSTOC events were: Sooke, BC, Canada (2013), Golden, CO (2012), Nelson, BC, Canada (2011), Moscow, ID (2010), Minden, NV (2009), Toas, NM (2008), Redmond (Seattle), WA (2007), Golden, CO (2006), San Luis Obispo, CA (2005), Minden, NV (2004), Moscow, Idaho, (2003), Ashville, Oregon (2002), Kimberly, BC (2001), Fortuna, CA (2014), Spokane Valley, WA (2015), Grand Junction, CO (2016), Reno, NV (2017), Baker City, OR (2018).
- Other factors — There are many other factors that could go into an award for hosting WeSTOC, but we encourage prospective disorganizers to develop the event around their own preferences. Remember, you’ve got to live with this event and you should put your own personal stamp on the WeSTOC you host. Most important, have fun and look forward to your induction into the famed WeSTOC Emeritus Council upon the successful completion of your WeSTOC.
Submit Your Proposal
All proposals must be submitted to the WeSTOC Site Selection Chairman. You must send your written proposal, via U.S. Mail, to the following address so that it arrives NO LATER THAN March 1, 2018.
WeSTOC Site Selection
1426 187th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA 98008
If you prefer to submit a proposal via a private, secured website, please notify the WeSTOC Site Selection Chairman, (Adam Koczarski), via email by the same date.
The principal submitter will receive confirmation that the proposal has been received. In addition, email confirmations of proposal receipt will be sent to all named proposed disorganizers. If you have not gotten email confirmation of receipt of your proposal by March 15, 2018, contact the chairman at email@example.com or phone (425) 865-9506 immediately!
What Happens Next?
The WeSTOC Emeritus Council will review all submissions and select a site by May 1, 2018. The proposers will be notified of selection after any necessary follow-up emails or calls to clarify details. Given the lead time required (greater than 1 year) to stage an event such as WeSTOC, you will normally know by 15 months before the event if your proposal has been selected. If your proposal has not been selected, you will also be notified of that fact and of the reasons for non-selection.
Remember, if your location is not selected for the next WeSTOC, it may be considered for a future WeSTOC event and you may be contacted in the future to see if you’re willing to give it another go.
If your proposal is selected you will be invited to attend an interview during the annual meeting of the WeSTOC Emeritus Council, which is held during the next WeSTOC event. At least one of your primary disorganizers must attend the interview. At the interview, be prepared to present to the WEC the current status of your project. Also, you’ll need to bring with you a presentation to be used during the WeSTOC final banquet announcement of the next WeSTOC.
Who is on the Emeritus Council? The WeSTOC Emeritus Council consists of those people in attendance at WeSTOC who have disorganized previous WeSTOC events. Once you have successfully disorganized a WeSTOC event, you will be invited to join the Emeritus Council (during the current year in which you disorganize, i.e. new 2018 disorganizers will be in full attendance at the 2018.
When is the location of the next WeSTOC made public?
The location of the next WeSTOC is, by tradition, always kept secret until the final item of business at the closing banquet of the current WeSTOC event. The WeSTOC Disorganizers for the next event are introduced at the same time.
Please contact the Site Selection Chairman, Adam Koczarski – STOC 265, at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.