I’m finally awake at 7 a.m. on Day Four of Alumapalooza, much later than any other day because it’s all catching up with me. I think I mentioned before that we are basically running this event on a team of four crewmembers, plus a few volunteers like Tim & Alice, Kirk McKellar, and Greg Blue. (Lots of other people have volunteered to help but we’ve tried not to impose, since we want them to enjoy the event.) This “lean” approach has worked pretty well, considering we now have 107 trailers on the field and well over 200 people attending, but it did require a lot of pre-event organization, and we’re all working hard every day.
Airstream luminaries are still streaming in … yesterday saw the arrival of Kristiana Spaulding (“Silver Trailer” jewelry designer), David Winick (designer of the 75th Anniversary Bambi), and Bob Wheeler (president of Airstream), among others. We had a full day of presentations again, with Vic Smith, Forrest McClure, Bert Gildart, Eleanor, a representative from Dexter, John Long speaking about Bowlus trailers (a big hit, especially with his gorgeous restored Bowlus sitting right outside) and ending with Larry Huttle, chairman of Airstream. Eleanor’s “traveling kitchen” show packed the tent again, and I heard a lot of compliments from the attendees later, which made us both happy.
But I think ALL of the seminars have been well received. People are just raving about them. One of the biggest compliments we’ve gotten came from folks who had planned to stay only 3 days. They canceled their other plans so they could stay 5 days instead. People are already planning to come again next year.
We’ve been lucky with the weather again. The morning looked very grim and in fact the outdoor polishing seminar got rained on, but no thunderstorms, and the rest of the day was sunny and dry. We definitely beat the forecast. From here on in, things look much better (weather-wise) so I think we are in good shape.
sKY and slaDE are doing yoga classes every morning at 8 a.m., and getting a huge crowd each time. That was unplanned, but clearly people like it. We will have to invite them back next year. It was interesting to see them doing yoga under the small tent while simultaneously in the big tent we had 300 doughnuts on a buffet table at the SkyMed presentation. You could stretch and breathe at 8 a.m., or sit and munch — your choice!
The Service Department at Airstream has done amazing work for everyone here. They were booked solid a few weeks ago, but they’ve managed to squeeze in lots of people like us who didn’t get early appointments. They are even working on Saturday to clear up the backlog. Our trailer got hauled into the Service Center yesterday for the leaks and came back a few hours later. The skylight was replaced (for cracks) and several spots were re-caulked. Paul, our tech, took about 10 minutes to walk through the trailer with us and explain everything he did — which struck me as remarkable considering how busy they are.
Today we have the British Invasion scheduled. Ten European Airstream customers are coming on a group tour for Friday and Saturday. Eleanor is catering their lunch today, so she’ll be busy half the day with that. We’ve shut down our registration operation and will just register the last few new arrivals near the main tent after they self-park. I hope that will give some of the crew a chance to attend a few seminars today.
Every day it gets easier, more fun, and better weather. Alumapalooza is really happening now. Our Facebook page is going nuts, too. I think we are destined to do it again in 2011!