yet another perspective

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I have been tossing this subject around for a while, and someday if I can figure out how to write it up without sounding too boastful I may try and do an article for TT.
Lone Star Cruisers has grown from 3 members in 98 to over 110 in 2002. As we have traveled in mass to events such as CM'02 I get asked over and over, how?
LSC is one big old family, lots of brothers and I have been compared more than once as the crotchety old man.
It does not take long to be accepted as one of the brothers.
I'll never forget about 2 years ago a snot nosed kid showed up with a PU which in our club are rare, it was stock and he rode with someone all day long and in general made life miserable for everyone, by days end I think all of us were about ready to strangle him. he was tryin too hard, trying to be too funny, too wise ass, too everything.
Now, after several upgrades to his truck, and a lot of maturing and hanging out with us, we all just love the guy....
My point, in LSC, if somone is out of line or treating someone with disrespect, it's like jumping onto a brother in a large family of rednecks, you gotta fight 'em all.
Hey Butch...

you have only touched upon your chapter... what else do you believe helped membership swell from 3 to 110... it had to have been more than just an attitude of family?

Up until now, I thought only the florida chapter had in excess of 100 members. Please share some more of your clubs ideology about membership and requirements.

Our chapter, PMC, which I routinely boast is the largest in TLCA at 97 membership applications equating to over 170 Active members, can easily attribute our Clubs membership success to a couple of simple reasons:
Easy Membership requirements.
Consistent monthly newsletter (communication)
All levels of ability welcomed and encouraged
Keeping it fun.

(now I just hope Butch comes back to reply)

take care...

Tony Twiddy
Sorry about the delay in replying.
Dave Brown and some of the TLCA officers were telling me at Moab, the fact that we (according to them) are the 2nd largest club in the org. Pacific Mountain being the largest.
The same reasons you list, plus we are a friendly damn fun bunch to be round, as folks all over the nation have told us.
I have saved bunch of e mails from guys all over with messages that confirm this.
I am pondering the other reasons, and will get back to if any others come to mind.
I will tell you EXACTLY why the LSLC is so successful. We meet a the same time, same place, same lusy food EVERY month. We spend an hour or two eating, 10 minutes max on parlamentary procedure and then we are off to the parking lot to see Cruisers. Lots of them.

My other multi vehicle club is FWD-FWD, one of the oldest and largest 4x4 clubs in the country. I never go to these meetings becouse they spend over an hour reading minutes and having all of the officers report and on top of that, noone drives their rigs to the meetings!

Hell, it is a Tow Rig meeting, not a 4x4 meeting!

LSLC meetings are fun, sometimes we will have over 50 Cruisers present! It is amazing! I HATE to miss meetings, because I love being in the presence of all of those Cruisers!

If you are having club woes, and membership is down, make sure you don't overlook the simple stuff, like the fact that for most of us, Cruisers are a hobby! Keep it fun! Lighten up on the Parlamentary Procedure and get everyone to push, pull or drag their junk to the meetings!
Nolen's got the gist of it. We all joined because of our trucks. Everyone grabs a brew or glass of tea and mingles among the various rigs looking over new installations, fabbed this or that, and checking other's wiring or construction before starting a new project.

Some folks drop out for a while cause of business, school, or family. They're always welcome and if they drop out without telling anyone... one of us tries to give them a call.

I started reporting on TLCA activities with a 5 minute report. I've got it down to 30 seconds now and hope to get it down to 5 seconds before the LSLC Spring Fling.

The longest meeting to date involved discussion of which charity we should give money to for Christmas. Those of you who've run into our group at GSMTR, Moab, or BHCC know what it's like around our campfire. Our meetings are very similar to our campfire conversations. Good friends, great beer, and my truck parked under the tree behind me.
Happy Trails! N
I think Butch is being too modest - the key to our club, LSLC, is that everyone really cares about each other. A large part of that is the officers are not there to stake out territory, and build an empire to themselves, but to act as a clearing house to coordinate ideas and promote what is good for the club and the members.

If one guy (or gal) has problems, lots of guys (and gals) pitch in to help. And no one is trying to stand above the crowd bragging about how much he did to help someone else. You rarely hear about lots of help that goes on behind the scenes, just because that is what we do.

All that said, the question is how do you promote that kind of activity in other clubs? I have no clue, and if I did I could have saved two other clubs I have seen go to the dogs. I do know that our members know how valuable and rare it is, and do their best to protect the club and individuals in it. No one person's ego is more important than the well being of the club.

I will quit before someone starts calling for a group hug.

I think that if an individual tried to cause problems, they would be laughed at and/or asked to leave, unlike some other clubs we have recently heard about.

Join up with us (we are a tolerant bunch) to see how it all works together. Speaking for myself I like Jeeps, Scouts, and all other off road iron - just please be a lady or gentleman (your choice) when we meet, because we run a club where childeren and family is welcome.
I've been a member of Lone Star Land Cruisers for over 3 years. It has gone from a few folks wanting to wheel to many folks building very trail worthy rigs. This group consists of all kinds of folks with varying backgrounds. We get along most of the time and we sometimes get into debates about the merits of different DIESEL motors we have for our tow rigs...
We're a very active chapter and have many trail rides.

Another thing that is very nice is the use of a mailing list. This is a service that is donated by one of the founding members of the club. It allows us to stay in contact with each others. We usually refer to the LC mailing list as the "other list."

This is a fun bunch and we don't take too many things too seriously. However, the president, Butch Baker, can be a real PITA and I have to give him a Yank slap to keep him in line.... :D

Warning.  Bad Spelling ahead

The reasons for their success are many, I'll list a few.

1) They keep the politics and egos out.  
2) Texas, its the Lone Star State baby!  
3) Shiner Bock and R.E.K.  
4) LSLC treats everyone like family
5) LSLC Does not just Wheel together, they share weddings, funerals, tragedy, go-cart racing, bad spelling you name it.
6) VERY LITTLE EGO off the trail
7) Their monthly meetings are of a social nature
8) Thriving mailing list

I have been associated with the LSLC for nearly 4 years.  When I first arrived in Dallas from St. Paul Jen and I were welcomed like family to the group.  They made us feel right at home in a new environment and were our only group of friends in a strange place.  It's humbling to know, that after only knowing us a short time, help and encouragement was a phone call away if needed, considering all our close frineds were 1000 miles away....I think they liked jen.....

Shortly after we arrived I got involved with the club, helping orginize events etc. and many lasting friendships were formed.  10 Months in Dallas and lifelong friendships were formed, they survive today, two years after returning to Mn.  Not a day goes buy that my close friends in LSCL are not in my prayers and thoughts.  

When I returned home I asked our then President Paul Otto to separate the social and business meetings.  Two years later we are seeing positive results.  No more business is hashed over at our monthly meetings, the BOD handles all that in a separate deal.  We still have our politics but it is not visible to the passive members or new applicants

For what’s its worth my .02

Greg Kemper (Shreg)
President MNTOYX4
This is great reading!

In our PMC Newsletter, I always state that our club is only as good as our members... and our members are great!

It is easy to see why LSLC is also such a great chapter... great members such as those who have responded.

and Greg... Paul is now PMC's Chapter Delegate... and we're darn proud to have him involved. And he told me how to properly say 'Minnesota'.
I joined TLCA (11823) and LSLC in 2001. I had owned my 40 since 98 but was unaware of any organization/web forum outside of the Cool Cruisers bulletin board. I was looking for a 97 FZJ-80 at the time and, through the CCOT site, requested advice. (I requested it, specifically, from a Cruiserhead whos' posts I had followed and whos' knowledge/advice had always seemed solid). I received many responses but but the one that stuck was from the afore-mentioned Cruiserhead. He gave me sound advice (get factory lockers!), told me to join TLCA and to come to an LSLC meeting. So I did.

My wife and 1-year-old son joined me for ICBM 2001. We had a blast, my little boy in a car seat, strapped into the jump seat of my 40 and giggling as we made runs with the stockers all day. The club members were great...they spotted, gave advice and entertained my little boy as we bounced down the trails. I tell this story because it is the only trail run I have been on with the club. Since then work has managed to cancel my participation in every club run to come along. I've also missed countless meetings because of my job. So why do I remain in the club? Because, since becoming a member, I've been invited to play flag football, to moving parties and wrenching parties and, just last month, to a quiet north Texas town for a Christmas concert and a homemade holiday meal. Through the LSLC mailing list I am able to keep track of members lives as babies are born, jobs are changed, houses are bought and Cruisers are modified. The meetings I do make it to are, as everyone has stated, social gatherings where wives and children are welcomed and Cruisers arrive in droves. I don't drink many beers and (God knows) I can't fix a damn thing on my Cruiser, but no one in LSLC cares or makes me feel like the mechanically-uninclined-monkey that I know I am!

I try to do my part by placing spotter flyers under Cruisers I come accross and by talking the club up to other Cruiser owners I meet. Every few months we seem to get someone new who was stoopped by one of our members and extended an invite. Hey, we cna't afford radio spots and TV commercials, word of mouth will have to do!

there is no better advertisement than 'word of mouth'.

thanks for sharing!
This is great reading!
and Greg... Paul is now PMC's Chapter Delegate... and we're darn proud to have him involved.  And he told me how to properly say 'Minnesota'.  

Ya, we miss Paul here in the great white nort, there are few better and your lucky to have him involved in your club don't ya know.....  Ive been workin on him to move back here......
BUMP for green40
I did not know what it could be to be in a "club" as the club I was familiar with just pissed me off. Then I went to katemcey and the Round Up. To say I was welcomed was a understatement. I went from 0 to best friends in about 30 seconds.

I was so impressed I have tried to take the LSLC ideal and bring it home to Atlanta where we have over 30 TLCA members on our rolls.

What I see as a major factor in the success of LSLC is the lack of ego. Sure some of us have great trucks and some of us, such as me, have s***ty trucks. That definition is based on what you want to do. LSLC welcomes all with the right attitude.

Many "club" people base their self worth on their standing in the club and how they might rank against the other members. That is BS. Cruisers are a hobby not a lifestyle. LSLC represents to me what a great club can be.

Butch is the ringleader. I am not sure if he is Siegfried or Roy. I am leaning more towards Roy.

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