2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby Cheryl Jones » Jul 13, 2009 10:33 am

How about using the Cavechat Favicon instead? See full post here: viewtopic.php?f=12&t=8500&p=74458#p74458

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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby cavepyranha » Jul 13, 2009 4:57 pm

ICS Volunteers needed!
The Transportation Committee is in need of drivers for the shuttle services Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. The events will not start until everyone, including the last van-loads of people and their drivers arrive. Please contact Don Arburn, donarburn@mac.com to volunteer or get the specifics. Please contact before Thursday, July 16th.
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Horseback riding?

Postby Squirrel Girl » Jul 13, 2009 6:36 pm

I know someone from across the pond who's wife is looking to go western riding while in Texas. Anybody have any info regarding this?
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby NZcaver » Jul 13, 2009 7:05 pm

By the way, is anybody planning on doing some caving during the ICS? :question:

I mean other than science field trips and such like. Information about casual trips seems a little sparse, but perhaps it's a "find out when we get there" kind of thing. I'd like to get on one of two fun trips between sessions and social activities. Can be vertical or horizontal, nothing too hard core, some pretty stuff would be nice, I'd like to shoot some photos too... any ideas?

I'll also need to bum a ride as I won't have a vehicle there. Suggestions welcome.
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby Squirrel Girl » Jul 13, 2009 7:42 pm

Hey, Baby, I got a car... You got locations? :big grin:

I don't see any free time anywhere in that schedule EXCEPT Sunday ahead of time. Sometime I have to find time for vendors, and the arts, etc. Wednesday I signed up for the kayak trip.
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby NZcaver » Jul 13, 2009 8:07 pm

Squirrel Girl wrote:Hey, Baby, I got a car... You got locations? :big grin:

I don't see any free time anywhere in that schedule EXCEPT Sunday ahead of time. Sometime I have to find time for vendors, and the arts, etc. Wednesday I signed up for the kayak trip.

No locations - yet. That's part of the reason for my previous post. I figure the best thing will be to get some local advice. You know, the usual caver thing. :grin:

I've committed to doing a security shift Sunday evening (the first weekend), but during the day might work. I haven't signed up for a Wednesday trip. I'm pretty sure one of George's ICS emails stated that we couldn't sign up for Wednesday trips until we arrived on site, but perhaps this has changed?

I'm also trying to arrange some sort of schedule around all the sessions I'm interested in attending, plus the arts, vendors, social events, etc etc. :panic:
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby Squirrel Girl » Jul 13, 2009 8:15 pm

George Veni wrote:Some of you have asked if open caving will be possible during the ICS, meaning that the ICS announced a cave is available and people can plan their own trips. Unfortunately, the answer is “no.” Such caving is incredibly difficult to arrange in Texas and become more difficult every year. During the 1994 NSS Convention in Brackettville, we had no such trips that I recall. Trips were led by Texas cavers, and relied on an abundance of private vehicles to get everyone to the caves. This year, when many people will arrive from outside of the USA and won’t have private vehicles, it is necessary that the ICS provide transportation. If you want to caving, you are welcome to join the ICS-led trips. If you want to go on a non-ICS trip, you will need to find a Texas caver who can take you, but most will be busy leading ICS trips and organizing other parts of the ICS.
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby Squirrel Girl » Jul 13, 2009 8:16 pm

There were Wednesday trips that were part of the registration process. Perhaps after the pre-registration closed, you might have to wait to show up to sign up?????
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby NZcaver » Jul 13, 2009 8:38 pm

Squirrel Girl wrote:There were Wednesday trips that were part of the registration process. Perhaps after the pre-registration closed, you might have to wait to show up to sign up?????

Yeah, I may have confused registration rules for specific caving trips with non-caving Wednesday activities. :doh:

The ICS website says "Caving trips -Registration For These Trips Will Only Be Offered at the Congress" http://www.ics2009.us/cavetrips.html

I also just found a nice PDF document on the ICS website with timings for cave trips and descriptions of the caves:

http://www.ics2009.us/1_day_caving_trip ... ptions.pdf
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How was ICS ?

Postby dlocklear01 » Jul 29, 2009 1:05 am

How was the opening ceremony party ? The Howdy Party ? The open-mic night ? The sessions ? The campus ? The weather ?
The swimming ? The kayaking ? The caving ? The Terminal Siphons ? The Photo Salon ? The auction ? The art salon ?
The map salon ? The NSS Banquet ? The ICS Banquet ? The Sunday night informal gathering ? The hot tub ? The cold tub ?
The swimming pool on campus ? The town of Kerrville ?? etc, etc.
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby NZcaver » Jul 29, 2009 2:23 am

You were there at the ICS, right? Why all the questions?

Or are you just inviting other attendees to share their opinions? :shrug:
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Re: How was ICS ?

Postby CaverScott » Jul 30, 2009 7:27 am

dlocklear01 wrote:How was the opening ceremony party ? The Howdy Party ? The open-mic night ? The sessions ? The campus ? The weather ?
The swimming ? The kayaking ? The caving ? The Terminal Siphons ? The Photo Salon ? The auction ? The art salon ?
The map salon ? The NSS Banquet ? The ICS Banquet ? The Sunday night informal gathering ? The hot tub ? The cold tub ?
The swimming pool on campus ? The town of Kerrville ?? etc, etc.


Crowded. Great once the rain quit! Fun. DNA. Gorgeous. Hot as expected.
Missed out. River too low. Great! Great again! Wondferful! Over at 11pm so missed the beer. :doh: Fabulous!
Really fabulous! Long Line. DNA. DNA. DNA. DNA.
DNA. Very nice.


DNA = Did Not Attend

All kidding aside, it was a heck of an event! I think CaverJules "batted" some 500 cavers! :kewl:
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby Anonymous_Coward » Jul 30, 2009 9:05 am

Okay, I'll play.

How was the opening ceremony party ?

Could not figure out why everyone crowded onto that concrete slab with such a nice yard nearby. Guess that's where the beer was.

The Howdy Party ?

Beer was shut down entirely too early. Loved the mechanical bull.

The open-mic night ?

Could have been livelier. The naked people running through were a nice touch though.

The sessions ?

Great! Best I've seen at an NSS convention. Nice to see so many international talks.

The campus ?

Nice. The trees in the campground were essential.

The weather ?

Much nicer than expected. Hot during the day, but nights and mornings unexpectedly cool and pleasant. Glad we camped.

The swimming ?

My wife loved it.

The kayaking ?

Didn't happen for us.

The caving ?

Excellent. Honey Creek was the highlight. You haven't lived until you've been raised out of a 40m shaft by a tractor and then spanked by catwoman with a spatula. (this really happened)

The Terminal Siphons ?

One of their best shows in years. A four hour dance-a-thon.

The Photo Salon ?

Lame as usual. The photos were good, but the production was severely lacking. How many years will it take to get the photos to match the titles? Too much rambling from the presenters. They also started the show 20 minutes earlier than promised, so I showed up on time and completely missed my award being announced in the Cart salon. :down:

The auction ?

Didn't make it

The art salon ?

good

The map salon ?

great, lots of good maps. Good prizes too.

The NSS Banquet ?

Fairly bad. 101 degree heat, couldn't hear, no meat, no beer, rude lady yelling at us, too many rules, instructions, etc.

The ICS Banquet ?

Didn't go because the NSS banquet was so bad

The Sunday night informal gathering ?

?

The hot tub ?

N/A

The cold tub ?

N/A

The town of Kerrville ??

Fine. El Charro was a staple for us.
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby NZcaver » Jul 30, 2009 12:08 pm

No reply to my previous question from dlocklear01 yet... but what the heck, I'll bite too.

How was the opening ceremony party ?

Too many people crowded into that small space, nacho snacks were so-so, but nice to meet/greet old and new friends.

The Howdy Party ?

The food was OK, the music wasn't really my taste but it could have been worse, and the rain passing through helped keep the temperature down. I'm sure it was appreciated by the locals (drought season), and of course contributed to the great convention tradition of bringing rain.

The open-mic night ?

Missed most of it because I was at a private party nearby. What I did hear varied from so-so to pretty good, I thought. I agree the almost-naked people running through were a nice touch.

The sessions ?

Those I attended, quite good. Would have liked to attend more, but too many section meetings and other distractions got in the way.

The campus ?

It was nice. I eventually got used to the hot walk back and forth from the apartments at the back of the campus. Session/meeting locations were a little spread out, but given the location I guess that was to be expected.

The weather ?

Not bad, the occasional rain had a nice cooling effect, very glad I spent the extra money on an air conditioned apartment.

The swimming ?

Didn't get to try the pool, ran out of time.

The kayaking ?

What? Wasn't this a caving convention? :tonguecheek: Didn't get to go kayaking, again not enough time to do everything.

The caving ?

Great. Wish I'd got to more caves. The Wednesday trip to Groundhog was much fun, a pretty relaxed vertical trip with a small friendly group. We got some great photos. Thanks to Aimee and Geoffrey for hosting a great trip.

The Terminal Siphons ?

Fantastic. Unfortunately after a day of caving, followed by dinner and then by thoroughly cleaning/bleaching myself and my gear, I arrived in time to hear only the last two numbers. :doh:

The Photo Salon ?

Nice venue for the presentation. I thought the salon was good, despite a few technical hitches at the second show. It seemed to go quicker than other years, probably because there were no award presentations. I have mixed feelings about that. The print salon venue was also nice, but the lighting wasn't great (hard to find a place with good photo lighting).

The auction ?

Unfortunately I didn't make it, was on the way back from caving.

The art salon ?

Nice, good effort with the additional lighting.

The map salon ?

Nice, some really good maps.

The NSS Banquet ?

I agree it wasn't great. Like Andy said - 101 degree heat, couldn't hear, no meat, no beer, rude lady yelling at us, too many rules, instructions, etc. I realize it was a last-minute change of venue, so all things considered I guess it could have been worse. The highlight for me was seeing friends receive well-deserved NSS awards.

The ICS Banquet ?

Almost didn't go because of the previous night's experience. But glad I did go. Slightly smaller crowd, less awards, less talking apart from the keynote speaker who I thought did pretty well. And there was meat this time!! Roast beef and turkey (I think). Plenty of seconds.

The Sunday night informal gathering ?

Don't know, I was on the plane heading home on Sunday night.

The hot tub ?

Not bad, enjoyed a nice soak.

The cold tub ?

Refreshing.

The town of Kerrville ??

Didn't spend much time in town, but it seemed nice. Ate at an Italian restaurant one night, but my meal looked like a tiny kid's portion. Maybe they were trying to tell me something?

Extra comments:

The dining hall/meal service was outstanding. Although the menu didn't really change, there was good variety and plenty of options for lunch/dinner. The staff were nice.

The vendor setup was good, except for the "overflow" vendors hidden away in the other building. Better signage would have been good.

Registration was a bit complicated with the round-robin style line, but I guess it was the best option. Reading about trips in the other room and then dashing to registration to sign up was a bit awkward. Didn't appreciate waiting until 5pm for the apartment to be clean and ready to move into after coming off an overnight flight. But that was the fault of the previous group who were using the accommodation, not the ICS staff. Grrrrr.
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Re: 2009 ICS/NSS Convention--Kerrville, TX

Postby Squirrel Girl » Jul 30, 2009 12:50 pm

How was the opening ceremony party ? DNA
The Howdy Party ? Fine
The open-mic night ? Amazing musicans. I was suprised to see how many wanted to perform and how good they were. Too bad the sound system wasn't better. It was hard to hear, though Dave stepped in to make some adjustments that helped. I had no objections to the mostly nekkid cavers running through--it was fairly caverly. But I felt *really* bad for those musicians who were actually playing when it happened. They just kept on playing through the parade even though I may have been the only person listening.
The sessions ? Awesome, but too many overlapping. Whaddarya gonna do?
The campus ? Fine
The weather ? Hot, but fine.
The swimming ? The kayaking ? Not enough water for kayaking, but the getting spilled out of the canoe was very nice.
The caving ? DNA
The Terminal Siphons ? DNA
The Photo Salon ? Great.
The auction ? DNA
The art salon ? Nice
The map salon ? Nice
The NSS Banquet ? I never quite got the story. I know there was a change of venue that caused problems. Something about fees that changed. So the food wasn't really worth the 45 minutes standing in line. My leg (associated with my hip fracture) was in agony after that line, so as soon as I finished eating, I headed back to my dorm.
The ICS Banquet ? Better food. Nice.
The Sunday night informal gathering ? DNA
The hot tub ? DNA
The cold tub ? DNA
The swimming pool on campus ? Splendid, but wished they opened earlier (like a pre-session, before the day begins swim)
The town of Kerrville ?? Fine.
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