Help support the WCHA Forums by making a tax-deductible donation!

Some "DUH" questions from someone who has never attended.

Discussion in 'Annual Assembly' started by yeolwoodsman, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. yeolwoodsman

    yeolwoodsman Rolf Warncke

    I'm hoping to get to at least part of assembly this summer. Having never been there, I find myself with what may seem like some "DUH" questions.

    After looking at the program for the week I was wondering if there was a fee for registration? I see the "pay as you go" for some workshops but no other mention of fees to attend.

    If there is a registration fee, are the meals in the student center included or is that an a la carte menu?

    Do most folks spend the entire time there or is it more of a come and go kind of event. While I see a lot of interesting things on the program that I would like to attend, and could easily fill a few days with, it might take some convincing for the younger one to take part in what looks like some fun stuff you have planned for the kids.

    What type of items are accepted for the auction?

    I've seen great photos and videos of some of the boats on display. Do most people bring a canoe with them to display. When somone does bring a boat to display, do the boats stay there the whole time? We would be camping at Rollins Pond / Fish Creek Pond and I'm not sure how I would sleep if I left a canoe up at Paul Smith's.

    I guess that's a good start for now. I'm looking forward to getting to know more about assembly. Hopefully I'll be able to get up there for at least some of the time this summer.

    Rolf W.
  2. Dan Miller

    Dan Miller cranky canoeist Staff Member

    Hi Rolf,

    Here are some answers to most of your questions... we are still finalizing some details, and the registration forms with prices will be available soon.

    There is a registration fee. Last year it was $10/day/person or $40/person for the whole event. Pay-as-you-go is over and above this, and usually is to cover costs of materials used.

    You can pay for meals ahead of time (selecting which ones you want, or we've also had an all-meals plan. It is less expensive to sign up for meals in advance. You can also pay for meals as you go. Some folks opt to go to restaurants, but the closest will be in Saranac Lake - about 20 miles away.

    Most folks come for the entire event. Some folks arrive early - Monday or Tuesday. Most arrive Wednesday. Some can only come at the end of the week. Sunday is departure day, so nothing going on then.

    Anything remotely canoe-related. We have had donations of canoes, canoeing accessories and equipment, paddles, seat backs, wanigans, tools, Some stuff is vintage, some made by our members. We often get things like maple syrup and wine, books, and so on. Very popular are Hugh Clark's carvings and the annual Assembly Quilt.

    Most folks bring a canoe, but it is not required. Paul Smiths has fantastic paddling, so keep that in mind. The boats stay on the green for the entire event. There is campus security, and watchful WCHAers.

    Hope to see you there!
  3. Rob Stevens

    Rob Stevens Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

    All good questions, Rolph. And I see that last year's registration form is not posted on the website, so you wouldn't easily have access to this info.
    I'll answer within your questions below.

  4. Kathryn Klos

    Kathryn Klos squirrel whisperer

    Howdy! I'll answer as best I can but others will need to jump in with their opinions too!

    >> "... I was wondering if there was a fee for registration? I see the "pay as you go" for some workshops but no other mention of fees to attend."

    Yes, there is a registration fee. What that is, will depend on what the WCHA is being charged by the college. Some places charge more than others, and if the cost is too high, the WCHA may "eat" some of the cost. I believe there is a charge for the whole event and a daily charge, and if Rob has any sense of what that might be, he will jump in. Some of the workshops will have a fee that covers materials. There is always A LOT to do that doesn't involve an extra fee.

    >> "are the meals in the student center included or is that an a la carte menu?"

    There are many ways to handle the meals. You can buy a meal ticket that covers three meals a day for the entire length of the Assembly, or you can pay for each meal each day... for instance, you can skip breakfast (if this is what you normally do), eat lunch with the group in the cafeteria, and have dinner at a local restaurant. Or, you can eat breakfast and dinner and skip lunch. Or eat all your meals on your own.

    >> "Do most folks spend the entire time there..."

    Yes... unless you live nearby and run home to let out the dog. There may be an event that takes you away from the Assembly-site for half a day... but that would be part of the Assembly and you'd be hanging with good people. Generally, I think once people get there, they don't want to go anywhere else. Unless you're staying elsewhere because you brought your dogs along, and you have to walk them...

    >> " might take some convincing for the younger one to take part in what looks like some fun stuff you have planned for the kids."

    Someone with younger kids will have to voice an opinion here. I think the Assembly planning committee does a good job finding things for young people to do that isn't boring. The idea is to keep them interested in canoes and the WCHA and the Assembly, because they are The Future of WCHA. Rah Rah.

    >> "What type of items are accepted for the auction?"

    Andre will chime-in on this one... but I think just about anything is accepted, as long as it isn't something you are trying to get rid of and the Assembly crowd seems like a gullible lot. There is a live auction and a bunch of raffles-- for the raffles, items are displayed up until the live auction and people buy tickets and put a ticket into a container in front of the thing they want... and then a ticket is drawn and the winner takes that item home.... and there is a live auction, where people bid.

    Many of the donated items are hand-made. Some are canoe-related... or camping-related or nature-related. I think most fall into those groups. Denis has made hand-turned wooden Christmas ornaments, and that has been a live-auction-bid. I have donated kerosene lanterns, and they have been raffle items. The live-auction items are on display before the auction so you can examine them before-hand. So, that fully restored canoe you want to donate would be in the auction... the Audubon bird print may be a raffle-item... unless it's an original from the elephant series.

    >>"Do most people bring a canoe with them to display."

    Many bring one to paddle, which may be on display when not being paddled. However, if you don't bring a canoe there are enough around so you can hitch a ride in the paddle-by... and this year, we are encouraging the sharing of Rushtons... just for a brief time... you won't get an Indian Girl for the afternoon. Some folks bring unrestored canoes. Then they promise to return the following year with the same canoe, wearing canvas.

    >>"When someone does bring a boat to display, do the boats stay there the whole time?"

    Most do... but that's up to you and what you're comfortable with. I believe 24 hour security will be on-hand to guard a collection of Rushton accessories. I'm not sure how that works, because I don't know that "security" has been employed (or needed) in the past. There are many spectacular canoes at the Assembly and I don't think anyone has had problems.

    Older Assembly videos you may not have found yet:




    Auction donation 2009:

  5. OP

    yeolwoodsman Rolf Warncke


    Thanks so much for all the great feedback. Next question. With so much to pick from and do, what activities would people say are the highlights and not to be missed parts of assembly?
  6. Kathryn Klos

    Kathryn Klos squirrel whisperer

    I think that's a matter of personal choice.

    I go to Assembly to see the people --all my friends and soon-to-be-friends-- some of whom I only know from this Forums board and others I only see at WCHA events. It all begins whenever we get there-- even before the wine & cheese get-together. There are some informal things, like evenings around a campfire, with songs and laughter. Many of the things I look forward to at the Assembly aren't listed anywhere in the program.

    I also go to see the canoes. I plan to take a lot of pictures and video--- and I don't want to miss out on any of the "canoes on the green" talks--- where someone walks us through the green and discusses what's there.

    I also want to hear the featured speakers-- this year, that would be those who are speaking about Rushton.

    I wouldn't miss the auction and the paddle-by...

    For those new to the Assembly, there's a get-together for those new to Assembly. This should be on your list.
  7. Greg Nolan

    Greg Nolan enthusiast

    Last summer was the first Assembly for my wife and me, and we both had a great time. The canoes themselves are certainly the basic reason to go – to look closely at them, to talk to the people who own them and may have built them or restored them. The activities, of course, kept us busy. I made a paddle with Caleb Davis, watched how to make a poling pole, showed off my DB Neal boat during the Cedar City tour; Deborah helped out in the book store, took the Stern Women class, and climbed Mount Monadnock – to list just some of what we did. But probably the best part was the various people we met. We had a great time with the people we shared a townhouse with (whom we had never met before) as well as with others we just happened to meet – at meals, at activities, or just wandering around, and with yet others who previously were known to us only through these forums. People go out of their way to see that newcomers such as we were are made welcome. There is, of course, time to paddle, with others or to get off by yourself for a bit. We enjoyed everything we did, and had to pass up a number of things we would have enjoyed – which is why we are returning this summer.

    Sign up for what seems interesting, and if you miss something this year – there is always another Assembly. Maybe this year we will go to the get-together for those new to the Assembly – we were busy and missed it last year.
  8. normsims

    normsims Morris canoe fan In Memoriam

    Annual Assembly

    Townhouse? Hmmm...I haven't been to an assembly, but I hope to attend this year. What are the options for lodging? Is there something at Paul Smith's, or local hotels, or camping?

  9. Rob Stevens

    Rob Stevens Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

    A variety of options (type and cost) will be available, once the logistic negotiations are complete.
    We haven't had Assembly at Paul Smith's for 6 years, and they have built some new residences.
  10. Greg Nolan

    Greg Nolan enthusiast


    Norm --

    Franklin Pierce had a number of townhouses available where 3 or 4 separate rooms had a common parlor/kitchen area, and were quite nice. Deborah and I had signed up for one where Denis K. and Kathy K. were to have another room, and I forget who was to have the third room. But as you know, Denis and Kathy couldn't make it last year, and a medical problem kept the other couple away because of stairs, so we ended up spending evenings with somewhat rowdy bunch including Ken Kelly, Ralph Kohn, Chris Pearson, and others who dropped in from time to time, and a good time was had by all.

    Franklin Pierce is a new school with a very new campus. There were no townhouses like those where I went to college, and having seen many college campuses over the last few years (when my daughter was applying for college), I think very few places have anything similar. Franklin Pierce also had accommodations in regular dorms, and there was camping on the grounds.

    I don’t know whether Paul Smiths has such accommodations.

  11. Kathryn Klos

    Kathryn Klos squirrel whisperer

    The site of the Assembly is always a college or university because dorms are available at a more reasonable rate than motels, and campus food-fare is likewise reasonable. There will also be a place for campers, and that's being worked out. But folks are always welcome to find their own place to stay. Looking around the Paul Smith's area, accommodations tend to be pricey and most places appear to need a week's commitment.
  12. Kathryn Klos

    Kathryn Klos squirrel whisperer

    Googling around, I found a Best Western about 13 miles from the college that would charge $115/night weeknights and $160/night weekends, and they are pet friendly. Not saying this is what we're planning... just sayin'.

  13. kayamedic

    kayamedic Kim Gass

    Wow, Rob has it been that long since WCHA Assembly has been at Paul Smiths?

    I remember Franklin and Essex dorms were wonderful for gathering in small groups. LMS and Saratoga were more dorm like and the former more homey with private rooms and a communal gathering area.
    I remember scattering peanut shells with KM Mackenzie and Tom. Then we went on our "feel up the hulls" at midnight tour on the Green.
    At any rate I would highly recommend bunking in on site. You get a far better feeling of being with other WCHA ers and all the dorms have WCHAers. You wont be stuffed in with others attending other events.

    It is a beautiful campus to share with others at the Assembly.

    What I do not know is the PSC policy on camping out in the lot near the gym. We used to be able to sleep in our self contained units in that lot and shower in the locker rooms.

    There also used to be an on campus campground but it was alas mostly underwater back then. That's more of a reflection of the weather than anything else.

    You MUST lunch at Donnelly's for ice cream. You get to pick the size. The flavor depends on the day of the week. Also go to Ted's in Gabriels. Worms to the right and beer to the left. Woe to you who do not follow instructions.

    There is a whole lot to do with the Assembly based back again at Paul Smith's . Ye who have non paddling family have the beautiful Visitor Information Center with its myriad hiking trails as well as going up St. Regis Mountain.
  14. pappadoc

    pappadoc Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Rushton accessories display at Assembly

    Some day last winter, in response to Dan Miller and others, I offered the idea of organizing a display of Rushton related accessories for the Paul Smith's Assembly. Time marches on, and I have begun to round up material, including a few unusual items.
    If you have any authentic or potentially authentic Rushton material such as paddles, leeboards, centerboards, seats, seatbacks, rudders, yokes, hardware, books, advertising,or other printed material that you would be willing to share, please let me know via email or through the forum. Many examples will be attached to canoes on the grounds, but we need detatched items, in particular.
    The schedule shows a visit to the display on Saturday AM, but items may be displayed earlier on. The Assembly has a good record of security for our displays, both with campus security and watchful WCHA members.
    Any help will be greatly appreciated. Rod Taylor
  15. Rob Stevens

    Rob Stevens Wooden Canoes are in the Blood

Share This Page