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Our story of the Volksmarch on December 31 and January 1

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  • William Hassell
    On December 31 and January 1, 2003 the Freestate Happy Wanderers sponsored the annual volksmarch from the Owen Brown Community Center in Columbia Maryland. We
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 7, 2003
      On December 31 and January 1, 2003 the Freestate Happy Wanderers sponsored
      the annual volksmarch from the Owen Brown Community Center in Columbia
      Maryland. We have a first class start finish with a room for registration
      for the three trails and a room for the walkers to enjoy home cooked food
      (from Frau Coco and her hard working volunteers), sales table, brochure
      table and a Kids Korner for the young walkers.

      We had two 10-Km unmarked trails with written directions. One trail to the
      Village of Long Reach the other around Lake Elkhorn. The 5-km trail went
      around Lake Elkhorn . December 31 was warm and nice for walking we had 350
      walkers. January 1 was raining and cold. Not great walking weather. We
      had 173 walkers.

      Club member Phill and Jamie Wilder developed a Harry Potter Trivia Trail
      question for the kids to answer for small prizes at the end. Everyone was a
      winner. Phill invited the Home School community to attend.

      Our brochures were at all of the major walks in the area. The Pentagon,
      Hershey, Pa. walks in November, and the Alexandria Va. in December.
      Brochures were in libraries, bagel shops and many places where we could
      attract new walkers. It was posted on the website in November. The walk
      information was emailed to all that are on the list on upcoming walk events.

      The walk information appeared in local papers and many community papers.
      The walk was featured in "Best Bets" for the New Year in the Baltimore Sun
      on 12/26/02. We had a nice follow up story that appeared today 1/7/03 in
      the Howard County Section of the Baltimore Sunpaper at

      We had 500+ walkers for the two days. We sold 15 new walker packages. No
      one complained about the increase in the credit fee on 1/1/03. We had many
      positive comments about the events. Some walkers got lost on the written
      directions but others said they were the best they had seen.

      A quote from one of Freestate volunteers, "It's always a pleasure to help
      the club anyway I can. I like the club's flexibility and the way members
      welcome anyone new to walking and volksmarching...my idea of what
      volksmarching is all about!!"

      After all the work the idea that got results, to get new walkers to our
      sport, was the Home school group that came out to look over our sport.
      Thanks to Phill Wilder who is a member of this group and developing an idea
      for the children to enjoy.

      We must keep looking for ideas to add to the sport and spark the interest of
      different groups so we can give to them and they in turn give to us.

      Thanks to all the Freestate Members who volunteered at the event. Thanks to
      President Bill Hassell that thinks out everything in advance so we have no
      surprises the day of the event. We were out walking trails and reviewing
      written directions in August.

      Volkssporting is in need of energy and new ideas. The ideas of how to get a
      new walker to your event and having them want to go to another event is the
      goal. This is the story on what we have accomplished. I want to hear more
      of what is going on out in volksmarchland. Nothing is said anymore on the
      walklist or the issues list about the accomplishments of clubs. I would
      like to hear your story.

      Linda Hassell
      Publicity, Freestate Happy Wanderers
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