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Algonquin Bound

Nominations - Ontario Geocachers Unite

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Wow! It's great to see all this discussion and to see some great ideas come forward, amongst all the so-called "pissing" and "wars of words".

 

Just to set the record straight on a couple of points.

1. I have never been involved in any "Geocaching Association" discussions at any venue, other than on-line here and in the Bozznet forums. No Tim Hortons' and no pub-nights (haven't been to one yet).

 

2. I consider myself a newbie, having been caching for a little over three months and I am certainly not insulted by the term, or even the implication that there might be more to know than I currently know. That is absolutely true. It doesn't mean that I cannot think, or have ideas, or lend support to viable causes. That is all I'm doing here.

 

3. I have never met BQ and also don't really know him from a hole in the ground. He was involved in the Bozznet discussions and from his posts, seemed like a reasonable guy to get things rolling. The only personal contact I have had with him is that he sent me a nice e-mail after I did a couple of his caches, which I thought was nice. I also sent him an e-mail, informing him that I had started this thread. I did not even consult with him ahead of time. He had obviously volunteered and a number of people had supported his nomination. I just wanted to get things going in a public forum.

 

4. The only people I have met who have commented in this thread are 1Short and TrimblesTrek; the former, I met on the trails and the latter at an event he hosted (the only event I have been to).

 

5. I agree that Cache-tech's work with government and other organizations on our behalf should not be interfered with. An organized cacher's association would help back those efforts, if and when he/she needed such backing. One of the things I liked about BQ in the Bozznet discussions is that he stated he would not want to deal with government officials. Since that is being dealt with in a proper way by cache-tech, I thought that was the perfect attitude.

 

6. The thread does not need to be closed. The initial reasons still stand. We (I and others who have posted here) just want to get some kind of organization started. Some things have been assumed by some people reading the thread and there seems to be some fear of cliques. Possibly a reasonable fear, but I don't really know any other geocachers very well and don't want to be involved in any clique. I do like the idea of having an organization associated with my hobby, as I have with many other hobbies. If the organization, whether started by BQ or GM or someone else entirely, sucks, I probably won't have much to do with it, or I might get involved and try to make some changes.

 

7. I like the idea that some have suggested, insofar as BQ and GM getting together and bringing some ideas to the table, if that is what they choose to do, however, I made a specific nomination, based on very little information, granted, but I still think it was a reasonable nomination and I stand by it.

 

8. I'm not sure why a live discussion, either virtual or real, would be a whole lot different than what is going on here, but I am not opposed to it either. As I said at the start, there have been a lot of discussions (I observed this as a newbie) yet no one seemed to be doing anything concrete, so I tried to do that by making a specific nomination, for a specific person and setting a specific date.

 

9. I suspect that most of the people commenting here are reasonable, intelligent people with great intentions. Let's focus on uniting those intentions, instead of separating them and getting into opposite corners.

 

10. I fully support the idea of a province-wide association and I like the name Ontario Geocaching Association. I'd love to see that SOGA logo reworked.

 

11. I learned years ago that in reading things on the internet, or in e-mail, that one must bring a very positive attitude to anything one reads. Read it as though the writer, like you, has the best of intentions and no underhanded motives. The reading will be much more pleasant and probably far more accurate. Anything can be read as accusatory or threatening or inflammatory or bossy, if that is how you choose to read it, or if you make assumptions.

 

I don't know BQ or GM or Halden or any of the other nice people who have commented, but I am pretty sure they are all decent people. I LOVE geocaching and would like to see an organized front in Ontario, for all of the reasons others have mentioned. I love Ontario, too and would love to meet other cachers. Don't really want to cache with others, since I like doing the search on my own, or with my girlfriend.

 

For what it is worth, I've noticed a geocaching chat room. I've also noticed that Bear & Ducky have posted a pub night for January 17th. Two places for more discussion, but as I said at the start, I've heard enough discussion. Let's do it.

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Well put AB.

 

I too am a Newbie but I have heard manyof the concerns for a while as my father has been caching for almost 2 years. I was not offended by the newbie comment I simply took it to mean that we may not have a full sense of the history of negotiations and geocaching activities.

 

I think many good points have been raised by AB, GM and BQ. We need to iron out what guidelines we want this association to stand for. GM's 12 suggestions are a great start.

 

Let's see where this takes us.

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Wow... quite a thread! Thanks for starting it off, AB. Everything you've said makes sense to me. It's a shame that some want to turn a positive thing into a big ball of negativity by promoting their own agendas, or perhaps by just... feeling the need to be negative, all the while standing on the sidelines.... This is a GOOD thing, and the fact that people have stepped up should be COMMENDED!

 

Anyways, I like "GO".

 

I don't think a physical 'meeting' is needed at this point - you are just going to end up excluding a lot of people who can't make it from Ottawa or Windsor, or Kincardine, or wherever, or who can't make the particular day.

 

BQ volunteered to organize things (and possibly lead), and I fully support that. I have met him at an event, we've e-mailed back and forth a fair amount about eachother's caches, etc., and I have read his recent level-headed, intelligent, and sensible posts. I think it's great that he's stepped up, and I think he's probably an ideal person for the 'job'. Although he will have a great deal of support, this is going to be quite a lot of work (which I believe he understands), and it says a lot about him that he is willing to take it on. If you don't know him, check out his fantastic multi-caches and read some of the comments... or read through his forum posts... or e-mail him! He's a stand up guy with a solid understanding and appreciation of geocaching that is contagious!

 

I could be wrong, but Ford001Dude seems bitter because HE wants to be THE MAN, and that dream is slipping away. Based on this thread, I would have a very hard time supporting GM100guy in any sort of leadership role... Rules of Order? Demeaning newbies (some might consider you one, based on the number of caches you have actually done)? Wanting to shut things down when things are not going your way? Posting and e-mailing under a cloak of secrecy? Definitely not indications of a leader, or even someone that I would want to put any sort of trust into.

 

All this demanding of mission statements and meetings and order and politics by a couple of people would be enough to drive many lesser men or women to throw up their arms and say forget it.... Thankfully that has not happened, and the Blue Quasar is still holding strong.

 

A Blue Quasar is one that is coming towards us - the light waves are pushed together, making the colour go towards the high 'Blue" end of the spectrum. Blue Quasar is also coming towards us and bringing us together, as opposed to tearing us apart. He also can bring us down to earth (as a blue quasar could be doing), and I like his approach - 'Let's start by getting a web site up!' and going from there... a nice simple start, yet a solid and positive step. Every detail doesn't need to be arranged before it starts. From getting to know many in the geocaching community in the past months, I KNOW that those with a positive contibution to offer will step up and this whole project will develop and grow and flourish....

 

From being a manager at my work, and leading many meetings and initiatives, I also know that red tape, personal agendas, and negativity can slow things down, but maybe more importantly - discourage people with valuable skills and initiative from contributing. There are ways of moving forward in an encouraging and positive manner, even if you disagree with a point.

 

I LOVE geocaching, and I am so glad that I discovered it. A web site sounds like a fantastic first step, and Blue Quasar seems like a perfect first leader. THANK-YOU BQ for standing up, and AB for taking the process a step forward, and to all of the geocachers in the area for the caches placed and found, the positive and constructive comments, and for being ambassadors of geocaching!!

 

Now, as far as I can see, Blue Quasar is leading the voting. If any one has another candidate to nominate, then please do so by January 4th.

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So we know that BQ is willing to run and hs support. GM are you interested in running? How shall we do a vote? we would need someone impartial to tally the votes.

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As stated before I am here for the long haul. If I can help let me know. I AM HOPING THAT WE CAN GET THIS BACK ON TRACK.

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I would think we can vote in one of two ways, either an open vote on the forum that way everyone can count or select someone neutral and email the votes to that person. Possibly someone like Cache-Tech if he is up to the task.

 

As far as the naming of the group I like GO Geocaching Ontario although GOING comes in a close second .

 

Happy Caching! ;)

 

logger

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If Cache-Tech would be so kind as to accept votes that would be great.

 

I hope to be posting a list of what I've been developing over the past while as to what I would like to propose.

 

I also encourage everyone to attend the EVENT CACHE just outside of Hamilton, it is listed as

 

http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_detai...21-093e18ed30fb

 

or waypoint (GCHC9F)

 

;) The Blue Quasar

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1. Do you agree with the organization being called S.O.G.A.?

2. Do you agree with The Blue Quasar starting the organization?

3. Is there anyone else you feel should be nominated?

4. Is there a particular position or field of expertise you would like to nominate yourself or someone else for, once the organization starts getting organized. (This information can be tracked by the organizer, until he/she is ready to start asking for assistance.)

5. What shall we call our "Leader/Organizer"?

 

1. I like GO because of the marketing angle. It's a catchy, action word acronym. OGA is my second choice.

 

2. Yes.

 

3. Blue Quasar comes highly recommended by geocachers I hold in high regard. I'm quite happy to have Blue Quasar do the managing and organizing of the association and I appreciate that he has allowed himself to be considered for the position.

 

4. I'm not sure how I can contribute but if the organization puts out a call for help and if the criteria fits I'll volunteer.

 

5. I like Manager. Organizer is my second choice.

 

R of JARS

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Anyone going to the Hamilton event (I won't make it) could you keep us informed of any discussions/ideas about GO/OGA.

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I will not be able to attend the event on Jan 17 as I already have something else out of down that weekend. These meeting that we need to have should not be part of a cache event and in a pub.

 

If you want to have a meeting it should be called and at a place in the province that is more central so that more can attend to have there say.

 

Lets keep keep the good idea's coming from all and I thank all cachers who are reading this thread and are concerned about forming a association in this province.

 

I will be leaving on holidays today and may not be near a computer for the rest of the week but will catch up on th thread next week.

 

Happy Holidays to all

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Meeting near Hamilton on January 17 is not an option for me and I suspect for many others. I would suggest the first task of leadership is to find a suitable venue and then poll for possible dates. I believe you may have to have regional meetings and then have a rep from each region meet centrally. Anything else and it's going to look too much like a little clique

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This Event Cache is not intended to be an Official meeting. i believe Quasar simply wants to take advantage of a gathering of cachers to discuss ideas. This will be no different than here in the forum. There will be other events and other occasions to meet this is not the end all and be all.

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If you want to have a meeting it should be called and at a place in the province that is more central so that more can attend to have there say.

 

Here a few questions and suggestions regarding setting up an official GO/OGA 'physical' meeting:

  • If we have a meeting, would Oshawa be the best location? I figure it would be central as far as Ontario cities along the 401 go.
  • Where in Oshawa would we meet? Can we get a small hall/gym/church basement for free since we have no budget? Does anyone have experience with organizing meetings on a $0 budget?
  • When would the meeting be held? I would suggest sometime in the spring after all threat of snow storms and icy conditions are over. Good weather would attract more people. But a spring meeting may be too far off.
  • I don't think we should wait for a physical meeting before getting to work on a website. It's important to also have these 'virtual' meetings and perhaps an ICQ-type of meeting. Waiting for a physical meeting could grind things to a halt.

R of JARS

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I support an eventual Face to Face meeting as well and do also feel that waiting until we can agree on a place and location maybe too long. Lets get a profile up (website) start gathering potential members and then we could get a real turnout at a physical meeting.

 

As for time and location I agree Spring would be better travel weather. Location can be trickier Oshawa could work, I am guessing we will have to be somewhere near the GTA.

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The only Ontario cacher I've met it Hard Oiler. I've never attended any of the Ontario events or pub nights, but I've never attended any of the events in Indiana,Michigan or Ohio either. This doesn't mean I object to anyone forming a group, provincially, regionally or locally.

If we're going to 'get together' then we need a name, right? And if we hope to get anywhere with a name, we'll need someone to 'take the lead', right? It doesn't really matter if we form an Ontario group, or a Southern Ontario group or even a 'people who live within 1 mile of the Tim Hortons at Walk and Don't Walk' group, once we get something formed, the rest will follow naturally. I agree that 'no one speaks for me except me', so if I wish to speak, I will. If I choose not to speak, then I have no right to complain if things don't go my way. I have my own ideas on how things would be if 'I was in change', and I realize that not everyone would agree with my ideas. That's why we need a forum, so that anyone who wishes to be heard, can be heard.

 

Wulf

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Well Well, Getting through the thread was exhausting.

 

I have read the campaign material such as it was, and find that GM has a bigger vision for this venture. Are we perhaps trying to use one organization to do two many things? Blue seems to want to be web based. I don’t know what another web site would do for us. The GC.com site is great and covers all the things we need. Such as this forum.

 

I think that a lot of people have taken it upon themselves to contact the Parks Officials. I sent emails to Park officials in response to the removal of some Caches. I will not wait for approval from any association before offering my opinion as an individual. If people have gone ahead without so called permission it is because they feel they need to respond to an issue that is at hand. The problems are there now, and must be dealt with now. If we spend all our time and effort fighting each other then what will be left for the real issues.

 

I don’t know anyone in this discussion, but I think GM has gotten a bad rap for trying to have people nail down the purpose of the association. I do belong to the MSN site but do not participate very much. I do know that these issues have been ongoing for some time and that there has been some discussion in the past. It seems like two or more threads have converged and we are now at loggerheads.

 

I would like to Nominate GM for the Organizer position. Now lets have some real platforms that can be scrutinized and discussed. Let’s keep personal opinions out of the thread. (Emails included). We have the best chance yet to finally get an organization up and running. Let’s all keep our eye on the prize “More caches in More places”.

 

I look forward to the Campaign and may the best IDEAS win.

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Well put. Now I believe we have two viable candidates. I don't think we should burden them with nailing down their platforms during the holidays but when would we like to see formal ideas? Mid january?

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Well, read the posts and I still stand firm on NOT having any sort of organization ( but the secret handshake sounds like a cool thing lol) to represent anythign havign to do with Geocaching.

I rebelled against it when Gm100 wanted to start somehting up and I still think it is NOT a good idea in the least. It just opens their eyes up to the fact peopel are hiding tupperware in their woods. The govt has bigger fish to fry then a bunch of people who are fighting for their right to hide tupperare out in the middle of nowhere. I mean really folks.

 

I love Geocaching, and would support ANYTHING , but this big mistake that will eventually lead to it's ruination. If we could all party and have a good time, I'm there, but to involve the govt in ANYTHING is usually a big mistake. HUGE mistake.

 

Forever the pessimist in matters that SHOULD stay "simple",

 

-Jayloki-

 

ps: but if you folk do go forward etc etc good luck and give 'em hell.

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To me it seems that as a group we really don't know what we want. I am trying to speak as frankly as I can here and honestly don't mean any disrespect to anyone when I say that.

 

Both GM100Guy and myself have ideas, and they may differ, but not much.

 

Perhaps it would be helpful to both of us if we knew what each of you wanted to see in a caching group.

 

I am not asking anyone to answer now, in fact I would discourage that. I think that if everyone could take a few minutes over the holidays to think about they truly would like an organized Ontario entity to do for them and when New Year's has past could post maybe three things that would be on their 'wish list' then both GM100Guy and I could get a better vision on how we could fulfill those roles.

 

I truly believe that there is a place for both of us, dispite our recent bickerings. We are obviously both very passionate about geocaching and what we feel we have to offer. I doubt either of us planned on leading something when all these discussions started and since we've both been attracted to the position it has become appealing.

 

I think that waiting till the new year is a great idea. Let everyone calm down and get back from holidays and then start to work with fresh perspectives.

 

Enjoy your festivities!

 

:) The Blue Quasar

Edited by The Blue Quasar

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1. Do you agree with the organization being called S.O.G.A.?

2. Do you agree with The Blue Quasar starting the organization?

3. Is there anyone else you feel should be nominated?

4. Is there a particular position or field of expertise you would like to nominate yourself or someone else for, once the organization starts getting organized. (This information can be tracked by the organizer, until he/she is ready to start asking for assistance.)

5. What shall we call our "Leader/Organizer"?

 

1. Having slowly read most of the thread (I'm away from home on a slow dial-up) I'm with the make-it-all Ontario gang and GO sounds good to me. Can't see any virtue and can see a lot of argument over trying to make it less than Ontario-wide.

2. Yes - glad to see that someone with enthusiasm and common sense has volunteered to get the show on the road

3. No

4. Always willing to help out if I can

5. Not too fussed by names as long as it's friendly!

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Well, I guess I must be on the wrong forum. I wuz lookin' for some FUN!

 

I'm definitely an "old" newbie. Goin' on 70 years of age ... no hair ... only got three teeth left and two of them are loose ... BUT I have been geocaching for over a week now and I even made some finds! Two of 'em and I'm just getting past the "Wait ... Tracking Satellites" message.

 

If'n I can be of any assistance with this here "Organizational" thing I'd being willing to swap you my time for some education on how to go about using my brand spankin' new E-trx Legend.

 

My first bit of contibuting is, "QUIT YOUR DANG SQUABBLIN' AND GET ON WITH THE ORGANIZIN'! ... And no FLAMIN' either!

 

And I ain't leavin' neither!

 

QUOTE

1. Do you agree with the organization being called S.O.G.A.?

2. Do you agree with The Blue Quasar starting the organization?

3. Is there anyone else you feel should be nominated?

4. Is there a particular position or field of expertise you would like to nominate yourself or someone else for, once the organization starts getting organized. (This information can be tracked by the organizer, until he/she is ready to start asking for assistance.)

5. What shall we call our "Leader/Organizer"?

 

I donut know how to "put a pretty box around that there "QUOTE thing!

 

I vote like this: 1=NOPE 2= Somebody do sumpump besides arguin' 3= Yep! How's about Cachengrab? He just does and don't argue. (Course I am a bit prejudiced 'cause I'se his Pappy) 4= I'd volunteer for the FUN end. Ya know, makin' wisecracks and spoofin' 5= How's about Miss/Mister/Ma'am/Sir and sech ... You know, kinda show a little respeck for the JOB they be doin' if'n nothin' else!

 

Thanks for listenin'

 

"Newbie" Dumpy-EEEE

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Wow. I've done a lot of reading, and I'm sure that my blood pressure has been going up and down throughout.

 

Having been involved in quite a few volunteer organizations, I'm well aware of the level of personal commitment that is required to make things work. I commend ANYONE that is willing to work on behalf of others. Don't expect everyone to agree with you and support you all the time. At times, it can be a thankless but very rewarding experience. Hang in there.

 

Having enjoyed a few of Blue Quasar's cahces, and having met him, I do view him as an honest, hard working and dedicated individual. I agree that it would be good to get something going, if for no other reason that to share information, provide a local communication point and organize social events.

 

On the other hand, I did get the "we'll do it MY way" feeling from reading some of gm100guy's posts, but, I also know that is easy to judge people by the way they type in email, and sometimes first impressions can be wrong. I think that gm100guy makes some valid points about organization, but, in the beginning, I think it's OK to loosen up a bit and let things naturally evolve, then start guiding things a bit to keep them aligned. Let's not forget that geocaching is about FUN, rather than having meetings, and doing studies.

 

I'm not a fan of politics in general, and I'd like to see a group that works for geocachers, rather than for politicians and the media.

 

I'm more interested in the "let's start a web site and get some ideas flowing" method that BQ is supporting. I'd be willing to be part of that.

 

I agree with notes posted by several folks, including 1short and TrimblesTrek that are more positive and supportive. I like GO for a name. Easy to remember and works into logos nicely.

 

At this point, I'm hoping that we can get things rolling, to promote Geocaching, and offer support (rather than taking over for) the work that CacheTech has done on behalf of GC.com and all of us.

 

Thanks to all who have posted, and, I look forward to seeing how things evolve.

 

LugNuts

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FYI,

 

Keith Watson has set up a web site for the Golden Horseshoe area:

 

I have created a website for geocachers local to the Golden Horseshoe. The purpose of the site is to provide local cachers with a friendly informal place to have links, events, and other local information displayed. Let me know if you have any input, ideas, or wish to contribute to the content of the site.

 

http://www.geocaching.webhop.org

 

And here is another list of web sites that was posted by a cacher named TheStosh who is starting a Central Tennessee Geocaching club:

 

Here is a little list of geocaching club websites that I compiled. It is by no means all-inclusive, but it gets a nice variety of large and small clubs in varing stages of development. It should help give us some ideas on current club naming conventions, logo designs, and even a taste of what our club website could look like.

- TheStosh

 

Alabama Geocachers Association http://www.alacache.com/

Arizona Geocaching http://www.azgeocaching.com/

Arkansas State Parks http://www.arkansasstateparks.com/things/geocache/

Central Oregon http://www.cogeo.org/

Chicagoland Geocachers http://www.chicagogeocaching.com/

Florida Geocachers http://www.floridacachers.com/

Geocachers of Central Kentucky http://www.geocky.org/

Georgia Geocachers Association http://www.ggaonline.org/

GEOSET http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SETennGeocaching/

GPS Hawaii http://www.lightfantastic.org/gps/

Great Plains Geocaching http://www.gpgeocaching.com/

Great Plains Geocaching http://www.gpgeocaching.com/

Houston Geocachers http://www.houstoncachers.org/

Huntsville Area Geocachers http://www.hsvgeocache.us/main/index.php

Idaho Geocachers http://idahogeocachers.org/

Indiana Geocaching http://www.indianageocaching.com/

Michigan Geocaching Organization http://www.mi-geocaching.org/

Middle Tennessee Geocachers http://www.mtgc.org/

Minnesota Geocaching Association http://www.mngca.org/

Mississippi Geocachers Association http://www.msga.net/

Nevada Geocaching http://www.nevadageocaching.com/

New England Geocaching http://ne.geocaching.com/

NY Geocaching Organization http://www.ny-geocaching.org/

Ozark Mountain Geocachers http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ozmtngeocachers/

Portland Geocaching http://www.pdxgeocaching.com/

River City Geocaching & Dining Society http://www.rcgds.net/

Southern California Geocachers http://www.scgeocachers.org/

St. Louis Area Geocachers Association http://www.geostl.com/

Texas Geocaching Association http://www.texasgeocaching.com/

Triad Geocachers http://groups.yahoo.com/group/triadgeocachers/

Triangle Area Geocachers http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TriangleGeocachers/

Tulsa Area Geocachers http://www.members.cox.net/geocache/

Utah Geocachers http://www.utahgeocachers.com/

Utah Geo-Club http://www.cachunuts.com/

Washington State Geocaching Association http://www.xsnrg.com/geocachingwa/

Wisconsin Geocaching Association http://www.wi-geocaching.com/

 

100+ more clubs on Yahoo Groups http://groups.yahoo.com/search?query=geocaching

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My girlfriend, Michelle, had just finished reading this thread, after I told her about some of the squabbling that had been going on. I had also posted some recent logs, telling of some of our caching days/evenings, which hadn't gone entirely as planned. After hearing of her plight, Purple Fever's wife jokingly suggested they form a support group. Here, for those of you with a sense of humour, is Michelle's response to both the support group and this thread.

 

Please... no grief. If you can laugh at yourself/ourselves, have a read. If not, move on. It is a pretty telling look at how this mess looks, especially to an outsider.

Dear Lisa,

 

I nominate you to be the President (or "Leader" or "Duchess" or "Chief") of

the official GeoChicks Support Group of Southern Ontario. The logo should be

two women and two dogs, crossing their arms (and paws) while waiting for

their men to finish geo-e-mailing because supper is getting cold. Wait...

since that's sexist, because after all there are women who geocache

(ourselves included), maybe the logo should be a man and a woman and two

dogs, crossing their arms, and the dogs should also represent both sexes so

that we don't offend any dogs out there, either.

 

I move that we have a meeting to hold a formal vote on which Tim Horton's we

should formally meet at for our quarterly meetings. At the meeting we should

also vote on whether or not those meetings should be held quarterly, or

whether they should even be held at all. Should we decide to only hold

"virtual meetings," we should still meet at Tim Horton's (location to be

discussed at a future meeting) to vote on which font our virtual discussions

should be held in. I for one am sick and tired of the "Courier" font, which

is esthetically unappealing and goes against all of the beauty that we

geocachers and nature lovers stand for.

 

There is already a North Prince Edward Island GeoChicks Support Group,

however, that might be offended if we don't form an alliance with them, so

maybe we should consider extending our group to all of Canada.

 

More later... I'm off to chair the monthly meeting of the Central Hamilton

Regional Brunette Capricorn Saturn-Owners' Rights Advocacy Group.

 

Use the force.

 

Yours in sisterhood,

somebodyelseslife425

Happy new year, everyone! ;)

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I agree with A-B that it is time to get the ball rolling towards organizing a formal association of geocachers for our area (Southern Ontario).  There certainly seems to be enough interest and I'm sure we'll all agree that there are a few issues to be attended to.  My answers to the listed questions:

  •  
  • 1/    Yes.  The approximate boundaries can be defined at a later date
     
  • 2/    Yes.  I can't think of a finer gentlemen for the job.
     
  • 3/    No.
     
  • 4/    Not at this time.  BQ should be the one to choose helpers to assist initially until formal elections can be held.
     
  • 5/    I like that name for now - "Leader/Organizer"
     

Cheers, Olar

 

Ditto! biltal.

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I haven’t read all of the postings, so if I repeat something already stated I apologize.

 

I can’t help but wonder if there is merit in allying ourselves with other established hiking clubs in the area? These already likely have a kind ear of our Gov’t and private landowners and would, possibly, welcome the additional association to boost their profile.

 

As far as an esteemed leader, I think we need someone who is familiar with the workings of the provincial government, has a knack for being persistent and a desire to dedicate substantial amounts of time and effort – this commitment should not be taken lightly. Someone with the charisma and connections to raise the awareness level of the sport/hobby with everyone. There’s no lack of people with charisma I’ve met at Geogetogethers! There are plenty of positive aspects to Geocaching and I dare say it has been more successful in getting people off the couch and outdoors than the likes of Gov’t sponsored programmes like Participaction. We need to capitalize on these merits!

 

That said, I think us as Geocachers also have to clean up our act a little. Having spent time with some west-coast hikers there are things that Ontario Geocachers (myself included) do that they would consider bad form. For instance: ignoring signs like, Private Property, No Trespassing & the ever popular Keep Out. There’s bushwhacking your way to the cache off-trail too. Many cachers subscribe to the Leaving no Stone Unturned method of finding containers. I aborted a cache hunt yesterday because I found myself having to do this. There’s also blazing new trails to get around insurmountable obstacles like puddles – you’re outside, you’re gonna get a little muddy. There are the people who stash a cache and don’t do any maintenance. I’ve come across caches that are in disrepair months after a cacher had notified the stasher of a need to fix it up.

 

Anyway, I hope nobody takes the above the wrong way. Let’s get together and get some dialogue going!! :blink:

 

Cheers!

Coupar-Angus

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I couldn't agree with Coupar-Angus more. And I too have had a time or two or being too "aggressive" at finding the cache.

 

I can see how a regional rep could be instrumental in cleaning up caches that have been neglected. This I think should be one role they would have.

 

We do need to be, as a group, more concerned about staying on trails and low-impact caching practices.

 

<_< The Blue Quasar

Edited by The Blue Quasar

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Hi all,

 

I am back from my time away from the computer.

 

Lets keep this thread going for another week or so and keep up posting the good idea's.

 

Happy News Years to all

 

<_<

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As far as an esteemed leader, I think we need someone who is familiar with the workings of the provincial government, has a knack for being persistent and a desire to dedicate substantial amounts of time and effort – this commitment should not be taken lightly. Someone with the charisma and connections to raise the awareness level of the sport/hobby with everyone.

 

It would also be nice to have a $50K salary to offer for the position! <_<

 

I guess when AB started this thread, I though we were talking about a 'friendly association', a forum to compare notes, to share info, stories, and resources, and to hopefully have a web site like one of the ones I listed above... something like this one:

http://www.alacache.com/

 

It seems like some of the discussion here is focussed more on the idea of a 'lobby group', which is a much different approach... I could be wrong, but my feeling is that the forming of a simple 'association' or 'club' or 'organization' with an initial president voted in by geocachers in a forum could be a solid first step. From there, I see different people in the Organization (GO perhaps) perhaps taking on different roles - promotions, govt liaison, administrative support, web site development, etc... My point is, that while communicating with the government, etc., on setting geocaching guidelines (or whatever else) could be a key role of an organization, I'm not sure it should necessarily be the focus, nor govt connections or 'knowledge of inner workings' a pre-requisite... at least not over the general idea of bringing cachers together in a positive way to enhance our enjoyment of the sport in Ontario!

 

Happy New Year everyone!

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Hi everyone and a happy new year to all of you. I hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas and New Year's season.

 

This is a reminder/update to note that votes, such as they are, will be tallied after midnight, Sunday January 4th. Since I messed up and said Friday the 4th, when I originally posted, I have gone with the latest day and will close on Sunday at midnight, rather than Friday.

 

Clearly there are a lot of diverse opinions about what kind of organization this will be and I believe and hope that is a good thing. My only goal with this thread was to get the thing started and beyond the discussion stage. I think that goal will have been accomplished by Sunday night.

 

I want to thank everyone for all of the discussions and comments. Couparangus had some telling observations recently, as did Purple Fever. The participation in this discussion thread has been lively and certainly seems to indicate the need or want for some sort of organized geocaching in Ontario. I look forward to seeing how such an organization develops.

 

GM100GUY has suggested keeping the thread going for another couple of weeks. I think the idea of keeping the discussion going is a very good one, so I will start a new thread for such ideas and discussions, after this thread has closed.

 

Cheers to all!

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I personally thought geocaching was about getting out and having some fun with family friends and a gps? There are already rules set in place about geocaching... geocaching.com. I don't understand why we need to implement any rules and regulations?? I guess if people want to get together and socialize,, thats great, but I still after reading this forum and getting a headache from it :) am still not understanding the full function or need of a commitee. just get out there and have fun geocaching, Don't litter... respect other(s) property no tresspassing,, and be safe.. what other rules do WE need?

 

 

Humour me ;)

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Thank you, Sliver and Lucy. I like Geocaching precisely because it has a minimum of rules and regulations. This idea, it seems to me, began as a way to educate the government about our activities. Now the idea of a regulatory body seems to be showing up. I can't see the need. Anyone who walks the trails knows there are far worse things out there than the odd piece of tupperware hidden behind a tree. We have official bodies in place to monitor the parks and conservations areas. We have CITO to help them out. If a group wants to talk to the relevant authorities about the aims of geocaching, fine and good luck, but let's not talk about starting to regulate each other.

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The idea here was not to form a group to impose rules and regulations upon ourselves. That in and of itself would be redundant and futile.

 

The issue that some people have brought to light is that certain non-geocaching groups, be they government agengies or other associations have taken notice of geocaching and question the impact that geocaching is having on key areas within the province of Ontario.

 

To date, and the best of my knowledge, Parks Ontario/Ontario Parks has asked for there to be a temporary ban on any NEW caches being placed within it's lands. Some caches have also been removed. Further, the Hamilton Conservation Authority has requested that caches be relocated within it's lands. And Royal Bontanical Gardens has also done the same. The latter two groups have worked with the geocachers so that everyone is satistfied and this is the kind of involvement we should encourage.

 

But, these same groups have infomed cachers that policies are going to be drafted as to geocaching in their lands. While this will certainly help us in placing caches, we should also be able to give our input and help them understand how we would like to work with them and improve caching for all.

 

That would be the primary focus or forum for a liason officer between a geocaching group and any government/special interest group.

 

Without our group's input we could easily find ourselves with less and less space, and the quality of the hiding places would also be in jeopardy.

 

As an example, if we lost the access to place caches along the Bruce Trail, we would have lost some of the best hiking lands. These exception locations, and these include Provincial parks and Conversation areas are the best locations for enjoyable caches. Anyone can hide a cache that is under 100m from the road, and they usually have limited appeal. But being able to hike for 500m-2km and see waterfalls, beautiful vistas and flora and fauna is what most people enjoy about geocaching. Getting out and seeing nature and being challenged.

 

This could be lost if policies are too strict or an outright ban is placed. This is worth protecting.

 

Please support this movement, if only to protect your access to the hobby you enjoy.

 

;) The Blue Quasar

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Don't litter... respect other(s) property no tresspassing

 

What you have said here is what we are trying to do, we need to educate all the stake holders in the differant govrnment organizations that this is not what a geocache is. According to there rules anything left in a park that is not part of the landscape is considered litter and can be removed.

 

The other part about respect is where we need to rely on the parks staff for placing caches on there land. They have areas that are protect and don't want cachers running all over the place to look for our tupperware and ruin a sensitve plant or walk on sensitive native land.

 

We hope by working together we can come up compromise that we all live with and be able to place caches at those great spots and share the experience of the hike and view to all.

 

As an example, if we lost the access to place caches along the Bruce Trail

 

Before you mentioned this about the trail I never thought of this question.

 

Who owns the Bruce Trail and has over all control of the trail? We know who controls the parks and conservation areas. We should also find out about the Trans Canada Trail system to.

 

;)

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"The Bruce Trail Association is working to secure land for the Bruce Trail and to secure conservation buffers to support the Escarpments ecosystems' integrity. To date, the BTA has successfully secured 1650 hectares of Escarpment land. This land is managed and cared for by Bruce Trail volunteers. Today 47% of the Bruce Trail is secure and safe from development. However, 53% of the Bruce Trail is vulnerable."

This from the Bruce Trail site. I guess the 1650 hectares is the 47%, but that's a guess, of course. The other 53% is where they have permission from land owners?

Thanks for the clarification, BQ. Good luck in your endeavours.

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"The Trans Canada Trail is a community-based project. It will be owned, operated and maintained by local organizations, Provincial authorities, national agencies and municipalities across Canada. The Trans Canada Trail Foundation will not own or operate any Trails." From their web site.

Should be fun negotiating with them. That's it, I'm done, I promise.

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I'm glad to see that we are all getting back on track, or would that be trail (cue the rimshot!).

 

Thanks for the factoids Yorelken. I didn't have exact percentages with respect to the Bruce Trail Association. I did know that they are landowners of more than 40% of the trail, the rest owned by private landowners that graciously let people hike through their property.

 

I also read in my Bruce Trail Guidebook that they have over 8000 members, although approximately 3000 actually maintain the trail itself.

 

So far the BTA, to my understanding, has not said anything about geocaching. And many posts/emails I've seen seem to indicate that they are not all that aware of geocaching. I only used it as referrence.

 

But this would be another group that we could work with. They (BTA) have enough trouble from mountain bikers, partiers, and other non-authorized users that we as a group of geocachers could show them a positive use that would possibly aid (or at least not impact upon) their passions.

 

There are many more groups that COULD be contacted, but to my thinking if we as a group are to contact anyone it would be the government groups that are responsible for park lands, be it Parks Ontario/Ontario Parks or local Conservation Authorities. IF we came to agreeable terms with them that these groups would accept as authorized uses for the lands under their care then it would be much easier to approach other groups.

 

To repeat myself, if we had a policy worked out with Parks Ontario/Ontario Parks, or with, as an example, Hamilton Conservation Authority, then we could use that as a template for future discussions. Basically have a document in hand of precidence.

 

But I still would like to see this group as more of an information place that is self-sufficent. A geocaching for Ontario guidebook, a place for people to call home and contribute to a hobby they enjoy on more of a community level.

 

;) The Blue Quasar

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As far as my vote goes:

 

1. Do you agree with the organization being called S.O.G.A.?

2. Do you agree with The Blue Quasar starting the organization?

3. Is there anyone else you feel should be nominated?

4. Is there a particular position or field of expertise you would like to nominate yourself or someone else for, once the organization starts getting organized. (This information can be tracked by the organizer, until he/she is ready to start asking for assistance.)

5. What shall we call our "Leader/Organizer"?

 

1. NO - Geocaching Ontario or Ontario Geocachers

2. YES - I vote for Blue Quasar as the founding leader to start the organization

3. NO - I would like to see Blue Quasar as his dedication to the sport shows his ability to organize on our behalf.

4. I will do anything possible to help in getting our organization going.

5. How about Administrator for a title until some form of elections can be held.

 

 

Happy Caching!

 

Logger

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Regarding the Bruce Trail, P38manCdn posted his experience with the Bruce Trail back in 2002. Here's the quote:

 

Posted: Aug 31 2002, 06:23 AM

 

It may interest you to know that back in Feb/Mar2002 I contected the Bruce Trail Conservation Authority by phone and talked to a lady who didn't know about Geocaching. When I explained the sport and that I was doing the right thing... making a request --before-- I placed the cache, she got all upset stating they didn't want mobs of people walking on the trail. (duhhh) What's the trail for -- rabbits and chipmunks? She got right angry that someone would deliberately place something on "their" land to increase pedestrian traffic. She wanted to know who I was, and what right I had to do this to their "virgin" scenic trail. She demanded my name, address, and phone number... said she was going to have the "AUTHORITIES" come round and "talk" to me. yup -- Geseppi and Loui with their "knee-cap-pipe". I hung up on her

 

Whoever takes on the task of contacting authorities will need to be ready to handle this type of reaction. This type of response from someone with authority who is willing to remove caches could have a real impact on geocaching in this part of Ontario.

 

To repeat myself, if we had a policy worked out with Parks Ontario/Ontario Parks, or with, as an example, Hamilton Conservation Authority, then we could use that as a template for future discussions. Basically have a document in hand of precidence.

 

I agree with Blue Quasar. Work with the authorities that are already aware of geocaching and are working on geocaching policies. We want to be part of the policy making process.

 

IMO we should hold off on dealing with the Bruce Trail authorities. Let sleeping dogs lie -- if we awake the BTA we may regret it. Having established policies with Parks Ontario and HCA first could be a better approach.

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Once again, I want to thank everyone for all of their input. The Blue Quasar has been given a very strong mandate to go ahead and start our seedling organization for Ontario geocachers. As should be, there are some who are against any organization, some who do not support The Blue Quasar and some who have a lot of fear and questions to pose. Nevertheless, the support for Blue Quasar has been pretty overwhelming and he has accepted the responsibility.

 

This thread will now be closed, and as promised, a new thread will be opened, for posting of ideas, opinions, questions, suggestions, fears, etc., regarding organized geocachers in Ontario. Please feel free to make all further comments in that space.

 

Blue Quasar, I congratulate you and wish you well in your endeavours. I would agree with previous posts, from gm100guy and cache-tech, saying that personal e-mail, or private posts, should be kept as such and respected as such. I appreciate your very real fear of being thought of as making back-room deals or holding privileged discussions. My advice, for what it is worth, if you receive private e-mails and are feeling uncomfortable about them, is to simply advise the sender that you would prefer to discuss it in the public forum. I think in most cases, however, that there is probably not a problem with private correspondence. If there are definite reasons for it to be public, simply ask the sender to post it publicly, as I sometimes had to do with this thread, given that there was voting involved.

 

For the record, as the moderator of the thread, I felt it prudent to remove my vote. The answers to the other questions should be left to the Blue Quasar for follow-up, but in summary, the consensus seems to be very strongly against the Southern Ontario Geocaching Organization (SOGA) name, for the obviously exclusion implied and which TrimblesTrek explained so eloquently. There is strong support for Geocaching Ontario (GO). My concerns here would be confusion with GO Transit and possible assumptions about affiliation with the Government of Ontario. The organizer's title is still rather iffy. Perhaps BQ can choose, or just hold off for future discussion.

 

So... BQ! Off you go. Keep us informed. All the best!

 

Cheers!

Ian.

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