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Zone Rep Report May 2012

Sean CridlandIn the Zone by Sean Cridland

The last weekend in March was a busy one for all of the Zone 9 leaders as we met in Salt Lake City for the annual meeting. This was the second year since we've started to moving the meeting around the Zone and the Intermountain Region responded with enthusiasm. President Will Crowther coordinated the effort and with the support of Strong Porsche we had our meeting at their fine facility just a few blocks south of our Parade host-hotel, Little America. Most of the attendees arrived the night before, so we had a get together at the hotel and then went off to one of my favorite SLC places, the Red Iguana for a fine meal and some time together.

The next morrning we started our meeting early and got down to business with introuductions and discussion about the various events and issues we have going on in each of our very different Regions. Shortly after break we had visits from several of our Parade and National staff, including PCA President Manny Alban, Excutive Director Vu Nguyen, Parade Chair Susan Brown, Concours Chair Dan DiRiemer. Zone 8 Rep Tom Brown also sat in with our meeting for the entire day. After presentations from each, we broke for lunch, during which everyone got to know our National staff a little better. I think it's always good to have some face-to-face time with those names we see in the back of Panorama every month.

After lunch, we were visited by our host, Eliot Strong, so we all got a chance to thank him for his hospitlity. Next came Parade Facilities Chair Francie Kish and Porsche Cars AG Club Director Paul Gregor, who had flown in from Germany just the night before to be with us. Each of them talked about what their roles are during Parade and of all the team coordination that goes on to make such an event possible.
Some of the other topics we covered this year were insurance/liability (as always!), club media -- including newsletters, websites and social media -- and the various "signature" events put on by each of the Regions in the Zone. We also chose the site of next year's Zone 9 meeting. It will be hosted by the Llano Estacado Region in Amarillo, Texas. PCA's smallest Region will play host to the Zone 9 dignitaries next year. It'll be a great opportunity for Llano Estacado President Joe Papp and his steadfast group of supporters to show the Zone 9 leaders and (no doubt) some of the National staff why our small Regions still carry the spirit of PCA.

Of course this year was my last meeting as your Zone 9 Rep, as my term will come to an end at the first of the year. So far we don't know who the Zone 9 Rep will be next year, but whoever it is, I can certainly say that s/he will have a great time representing and visiting all of our great Regions. If anyone is interested in serving in that position, please contact me so that I can pass your name along to National for consideration.
On Saturday evening, we all joined the Intermountain Region at Rodizio's Grille for a great Argentinian-style barbeque dinner. About 60 members of the Intermountain Region were on hand, plus the Zone 9 and National dignitaries and a great time was had by all as we feasted on an amazing array of meats and buffet items and desserts. It's a good thing I walked the ten blocks or so to the restaurant, because I sure needed the exercise afterward! But we still weren't finished. The next day several of the Zone 9 group met early to take a tour of the Utah State Capital grounds where the Parade concours will be held, then drove west to Miller Motorsports Park for a guided tour of their Cobra museum, a parade lap of the full MMP 4.5 mile road-course, and a tour of the other facilities on the grounds. We were originally planning to take a look at the Parade autocross venue, but by that time it was snowing (!), hard!

Before closing this installment, I'd like to remind all of you to get registered for Parade in Salt Lake City. It's going to be a great one! And, if you have any interest in DE/track-days, please register for the Intermountain Region hosted DE that will be taking place at Miller Motorsport Park on the final day of Parade. It's not an offical Parade event, so you'll have to register separately. Aside from doing it just to have fun -- which you will -- another very good reason to do it is to reward the Intermountain folks for their hard work this year. While the old Parade model allowed for the hosting Region to benefit (or lose) financially from hosting a Parade, the new model does not. The Intermountain folks have stepped up admirably to help out with this year's Parade. Entering their DE allows them to benefit financially from all that work they've been doing for the past two years. Oh, and when you see them, be sure to say "thanks" for all they've done for Parade and for Zone 9 this year. It's a job (or several jobs!) well done!

I look forward to seeing each of you at some event this summer.

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