Hey Guys -
Sorry for the delay in getting this posted, obviously life has gotten busy for most of us!
So, lets talk about Southeast Takeover 11.
To say that our attendance has declined over the last years is putting it lightly. Not only are less and less trucks making the trip every year, but the support we had from vendors has taken a hit as well.
The "off road" industry has made a very distinct switch and so much focus is now on buggies, competitions, races, and massive spectator events. While there is nothing wrong with ANY of those things, and we can happily support and attend these, it has had a major detrimental effect on smaller homegrown events like Southeast Takeover.
For the past 6 years we have worked hard to create an event that is more than just trail riding. We’ve encouraged everyone to branch out and get to know their fellow wheelers. Its about more than the riding, it was about coming together for a good time and building friendships. BUT it IS an off road event, and the wheeling DOES matter. The southeast has lost many great parks and trail systems over the years and finding a location that fits the bill for SETO has become more and more challenging each year ---- Proximity to amenities like proper camping facilities, ease of travel for our long distance guys, enough trails to keep both stock to extreme busy for a few days, and of course the overall cost to make sure it is within everyone’s reach have always been an important part of SETO. With competitions, major events, and races becoming more prevalent we’ve lost the ability to pick a park and “take over” like we had been able to in the past.
To get right down to it – I need to hear from you guys. Labor Day weekend this year is not leaving us with many options for a successful SETO 11 event. We had considered several different trail systems but most of them all ready have something on the books. Adventure Offroad (AOP) has a buggy event and benefit ride scheduled. Windrock has a new (expensive) event kicking off this year. Golden Mountain has their pavilions booked. The low attendance we had in Harlan last year does not seem to make that a viable option. We had considered the new Durhamtown Tellico area, but I am not confident that it would provide enough trail riding opportunity for everyone.
In addition to all of that, I’ll be honest in saying that the event hasn’t been too easy on Colin and I with the addition of a little one who isn’t quite ready to wheel yet. We have been happy to keep on with it despite not even getting to hit the trails the past two years, but our riding situation isn’t going to change much anytime soon
So you tell me – what do we need to do here? One thought it so combine SETO with the annual October trip that a group of TN/NC guys have been making every year – usually to Harlan but other locations could be considered as it’s less “busy” than Labor Day. We can encourage more weekend wheeling events; AOP seems like an awesome park as long as there isn’t a major event going on there. I’m really at a loss on this because it IS IMPORTANT to us, we’ve had 10 amazing events. A decade of great wheeling and great friends. But here we are at an impasse and I’m just not sure how to move forward.
Please keep your comments positive. We all know things have slowed down on the forum, but like anything else, the tides sometimes change… its up to YOU to help bring it back around again.
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