Wow, how time flies. As of today, the Cirque is exactly three short months away, so it's high time for another Cirque update.
Things are really starting to ramp-up now, and we are addressing final details in a number of areas. We have a number of volunteers on board, and have some (loosely) organized committees in place, including Ride Committee, Show and Swap Set-up Committee, and Show Bike Registration Committee. We will soon be recruiting judges for the show too. We want to sincerely thank all of our volunteers. If you would like to be part of our volunteer group, and/or have a particular area you'd like to be involved in, please let me know.
We also have a number of "newer" frame builders either committed to attending, or expressing interest in the Cirque. We are pretty excited about this, because we think it is important to the hobby and the sport, and because we would like the Cirque to embrace the past, as well as the future of classic-inspired, craft-built bicycles, parts and accessories. Kinda works well with our mantra and theme this year too.
We have over 40 registrants so far, and we want to thank all those people. Early payment really helps with cash-flow. Remember, this is YOUR event. We are just the facilitators, and are trying to make the event as special and memorable as past Cirques.
We still do not have our electronic registration up and running yet, but I have been working closely with BikeReg.com, and hope to have on-line registration open soon, maybe even within the next week. There are few things you should know about on-line registration services. First, there is a service-fee associated with all of these type services, and that fee is charged to the registrant. Fees are on a sliding scale, and the percentage decreases as the cost increases. Fees for Cirque registration will likely average about $4 to $6 per registrant, or possible a bit more, depending on total entry cost. In addition, we will not receive payment with each registration. Rather, we will be paid in scheduled "disbursements" leading up to, and even following the event. Not really sure how this will impact our payment for contracted services. We are still trying to figure that out. We are also not sure if we should have only electronic registration, or still have mail-in registration as well. Having both gives participants the option, but also significantly increases the complexity of managing, documenting and posting registration details.
We would be interested in hearing feedback from you as to the need for, or desirability of this-type service. We tend to think that it's a necessity as participation grows, but it does come with both advantages and disadvantages.
One last thing about registration, there is a definite trend toward spouses being included in registrations received to date. This is particularly true for the Banquet, so if you want to attend the Banquet, you should register ASAP. 41 of the available 140 spots are already booked, and that's with only about 42 registrations received!!
I'M MAKING A FINAL PLEA HERE TO THOSE ATTENDING. FOR THOSE THAT CAN MANAGE IT, PLEASE PRINT OUT THE FORM FROM THE WEB SITE AND REGISTER TODAY, WHILE REGISTRATION IS SIMPLE, AND BECAUSE WE COULD REALLY USE THE MONEY.
As reported earlier, the Best Western is fully booked. We account for
80% occupancy right now. If there are any cancellations by the
non-Cirque 20%, we will have access to those rooms. We have started a
waiting list, so if you have a room booked, and find that you cannot
attend; please let us know so that we can allocate rooms to those
already waiting. If you want to be added to the wait-list, please
contact me. Please visit the web site for info on alternate hotels.
The hotel has been very accommodating and we feel that it will be a great venue for the Cirque. The hotel has agreed to open the breakfast room, normally closed after breakfast, as another gathering place for us. This is great news, as this area has lots of tables and chairs, as well as a couple of couch-and-chair groups. We will still have to vacate the room during certain hours to allow for cleaning and set-up, but this is still quite a nice accommodation.
FRIDAY AND SATURDAY SCHEDULE
A more detailed schedule will be posted to the web site soon, but I wanted to provide a few new up-dates here too. Posted times in the new schedule are subject to change as we fine-tune everything in the run-up to the event.
- Opening Reception, 6/6. We want to encourage everyone to be prepared to register show bikes on Friday, starting at the Reception, and possibly later in the day and/or at the beginning of the Auction. More details about that will be available soon, but we want to avoid the chaos associated with trying to do that all on Sunday morning. - Seminars, 6/7. Schedule at the moment, but still subject to change, includes (but not necessarily in this order); Dale Brown, Stephen Bilenky and Hank (Henry James) Folsom. Also in development is a frame-builders forum, where you'll have a chance to ask a number of well-known frame builders about build techniques, details, styles, influences, etc. A number of interesting frames will be on display to stimulate and further the discussion. - Also in keeping with what appears to be increased spouse attendance, we are planning some "alternative" activities, particularly on Saturday during the day. These activities will likely be on a sign-up-on-the-day basis, and will probably be dependant on interest. More on this later as things develop. - Banquet, 6/7. We still don't have a definitive keynote speaker for the Banquet, primarily because we have two exciting prospects interested. Stay tuned, you won't be disappointed.
We also have a few very interesting videos that we would like to show at the Cirque. We haven't yet determined just when and how to accomplish this, but we are working on it.
SUNDAY SHOW AND SWAP
As announced earlier, the show will be organized in six, or possibly seven time categories. The earliest time category will be a catch-all for the earliest bikes. The last category may be split yet again, depending on bikes submitted, and how the final display is organized (more about that in a minute). Category designations will be as follows (years indicated are inclusive):
1959 and earlier 1960 thru 1967 1968 thru 1973 1974 thru 1980 1981 thru 1986 1987/KOF and later
Again, these categories represent periods of time where there were recognized changes, milestones, and/or evolution happening in the lightweight bicycle world. Also again, I know that this could instigate a huge discussion about what/when/why, but that is not my intention, nor will I participate in any debate about it. The decision about the categories has been made, and that's what they will be.
If in doubt about where your bike may fit, the determining factor is the frame manufacture date, irrespective of components.
In another development, we will only display built bikes in the main part of the show. We hope to have another, separate area where frames can be displayed, but the main display will be for built bikes only. I encourage everyone to bring bikes that they feel might represent the "best" of the period (very subjective, of course), and/or bikes that mark changes/fads/evolution of the day (the aero craze of the early 80's comes to mind).
In order to provide the best show environment possible, both for our core constituents and for what we anticipate being an increased number of one-day participants, I'd like to encourage people who will be entering bikes in the show to send us information (privately) on the particular bikes in advance, so that we can plan the display area accordingly. To enhance the thrill factor, we will not publish what bikes have been submitted, but having a least some idea of what will be on display will help us allocate space appropriately. The plan is to have separate, physically segregated areas for each category, so the configuration will be significantly different from past years, and any advanced lay-out planning will be extremely helpful. Our Show & Swap Set-up Committee thanks you in advance!
If you have already read all this, congratulations! I'm impressed. But still, I'll stop here for now. Keep an eye on the website for further details.
Lovettsville VA USA