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NCMAS restart - thoughts?

  • Would help with club work

    Votes: 14 63.6%
  • Can't help with work but would attend events

    Votes: 7 31.8%
  • Don't think we need a club

    Votes: 1 4.5%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, everyone. After talking with a few folks at MACNA, I think we shouldn't give up on NCMAS. There are enough of us here to field a club. But a lot of us have other responsibilities, so I'm proposing a scaled-back quarterly version - 1-2 frag swap/auctions a year, and two non-frag meetings, probably at LFS's. Plus maybe a holiday event, if we can swing it.

I'm willing to give what time I have, because I've learned so much from NCMAS. Joe and Wes are willing to do what they can, too. Are you?

Please reply if you're interested - would you be willing to help with the workload? Would you come to the events? Or do you think we ought to let it go?
 

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I've talked with a few people about the lack of a club in the area. The problem is that there is not a strong club anywhere in this state.

Whether it is NCMAS or a new club all together - I think a statewide club is the way to go.

There are obvious challenges to something like that. Many of them I have discussed with various people on these forums and we have come up with good solutions for most of them.
 

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Agreed with NCSUsalt, very true about the Charlotte club. :)

The Reef Farm is always happy to donate or help NCMAS (or any club) any way we can, love the idea...we are behind you 110%! We had the old cards on the counter at the shop, would need some more or just some flyers if it gets going again. We have a lot of customers who don't go on CFT, we would be happy to put up any material you like about getting this going again, also - just let us know how we can help! :)
 

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RAS would welcome any saltwater members, but would not agree to changing their name, or probably much else. And why should they, really...they have been around since 1981! The thing is, last I checked only 3 out of 12 meetings at RAS pertain to saltwater...so while it isn't true to say they are ALL freshwater, it is fair to say they are MOSTLY freshwater. At the yearly event, there are usually only maybe two saltwater vendors. (Keep in mind I haven't been to see my buddies at RAS in FAR too long for any of this to be taken as absolute fact!) It couldn't possibly hurt to start a dialogue with them about it, though...and to advertise to NCMAS members on which meetings RAS is having saltwater talks! :) If NCMAS is only doing 4 events or so per year this could work out very well...Definitely PM Gerald for more information, and more accurate and up to date info!!! ;)
 

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For its first 20+ years, RAS was a mixed fresh+salt club, before reef-keeping became big business. We had fairly frequent saltwater talks at our monthly meetings, and 1 or 2 big-name saltwater speakers each year at our annual Carolina Aquarium Workshop: Moe, Sprung, Delbeek, Thiel, and lots of others. Back then hardly anybody kept saltwater until they'd had a few years of freshwater experience first, and most saltwater keepers still kept fresh tanks too, or at least appreciated learning and listening to talks about fresh. Then reef-keeping gradually became its own hobby, and a huge business. About this same time, big-box pet chains were putting locally-owned freshwater fish shops out of business, and catering to saltwater became a way for a mom & pop stores to survive.

The saltwater knowledge base and technology had improved vastly, and new aquarists could now go directly to saltwater and have a reasonable chance of success without ever "getting their feet wet" in freshwater. Many of these "primary salt" people had no interest in freshwater keeping, and no patience with club events that weren't salt-only. They created their own clubs, frag-swaps, and other events, and gradually abandoned RAS. We continued having a couple salt speakers at the annual workshop for a few more years, but attendance at the salt talks was embarrassingly low. By the mid 2000's it was apparent that the majority of marine keepers had moved on to their own little world and were unlikely to attend RAS events designed for both fresh and salt keepers. That's why RAS is primarily a freshwater club today, and why we quit inviting saltwater speakers for the annual workshop, which costs a lot to put on. (We do still have occasional marine talks at the monthly meetings). Personally, I love marine talks just as well as fresh. I find the biology, ecology, physics, chemistry, technology, etc fascinating -- even though I've never kept corals.

Marine keepers are certainly welcome to come back to RAS, which was never intended to be "freshwater club" by design. It's just that those are the people who currently attend and are willing to work on recruiting speakers and planning events. Our programs reflect the interests of our members. If marine keepers want to organize some salt-focused talks and events through RAS, we'd be glad to have them back again. The only "condition" is that you have some patience and be willing to help out with and attend the freshwater talks and activities too.

Our next RAS monthly meeting will be Thurs, Oct 1, with Dave Griffin speaking on the NC Public Aquariums Operations -- that one oughta be pretty salt-focused. Come check us out and introduce yourself ... 730 to 930 pm at the NCSU Vet School. If you cant make it Thurs nights, the Nov meeting will be on Sat afternoon Nov 14, and our fall auction is the following day (Sun Nov 15).

Gerald
 

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I think thats a great idea! Also, as mentioned above RAS seems to be a very stable and active club in the Raleigh area. I was thrilled to see NCMAS really gain traction and become an active club, and I hated to see them collapse. I think it would be great to start and grow an awesome club.


Not sure what would be needed, but I would be glad to help out as much as possible.
 

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I was never able to attend NCMAS meeting on a regular basis...but I wanted too. I would be interested in continuing the club.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'm glad to see so much support. I can't do much for the next few weeks because of work, but I'm hoping to maybe set up a meeting or conference call later in Oct/Nov.

RAS is a fantastic club, but I'm not sure it's a good fit for NCMAS - and I say this as someone who's kept (and still keeps) freshwater tanks for 30+ years. They're just different animals, literally and figuratively. But I think it would be good to do joint events every so often. A lot of us do have both!
 
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