Vol IV - GCGC Newsletter (Fall 2010)


     GCGC NEWSLETTER     
         

Volume IV / Fall 2010
www.charlottegeocaching.com

As seen from your push pins on our members map, we have members from:

Georgia

Kentucky

Maryland

Oregon

West Virginia

Vermont

France

In this edition: Click a heading to jump to the article.
Upcoming Events | MEGA News | Featured Article | GCGC Club News | Family Friendly Caching | Contest | NCGO News | YoGO News



     UPCOMING
EVENTS
    
These are the most current events as of the mailing of this newsletter. All of the regular events and CITOs listed are within a 100 mile radius of Charlotte. Pick one and make plans to attend. It's always great to meet new cachers, put faces with names and catch up with old friends. See you at an event! To learn more, click on an event to go to its page.
  

SEPTEMBER

REGULAR EVENTS

30th -  10th Anniversary of NC's Oldest Geocache
              ~ (GC2CP8W) by CarolinaCacher.org
              ~ Charlotte, NC
30th -  Get social with Winstonsmom!
              ~ (GC2F8K0) by ncbiscuit.
              ~ Burlington, NC

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OCTOBER

REGULAR EVENTS

  2nd -  Geocast Log Signing
              ~ (GC2FA8Q) by 1ktowngirl
              ~ Kannapolis, NC
  9th -  Pee Dee Cacher's Sweet Potato Hunt
              ~ (GC2FE4T) by wallacefamilysc
              ~ Darlington, SC
10th -  10-10-10 @ 10:10am A 10 Minute Event
              ~ (GC29HFT) by Night-Ranger
              ~ Oak Ridge, NC
10th -  10 10s on 10/10/10 from 10:00:10-10:10:10am
              ~ (GC2D3GG) by OzGuff
              ~ Ashville, NC
10th -  10 10s on 10/10/10 from 10:00:10-10:10:10pm
              ~ (GC2CV7J) by OzGuff.
              ~ Ashville, NC
15th -  The GCGC Falls into....Fall!! <-- GCGC EVENT!
              ~ (GC2FW9Z) by The GCGC.
              ~ Matthews, NC
16th -  GeoWoodstack #1
              ~ (GC2F528) by Night-Hawk.
              ~ Oak Ridge, NC

CITO EVENTS

10th -  Lakeside Park CITO Event
              ~ (GC2EDQR) by CabinMan31
              ~ Granite Falls, NC

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NOVEMBER

REGULAR EVENTS

  6th -  NCGO Fall Fling 2010
              ~ (GC2BNQ6) by ncgeocachers.org
              ~ Lake Norman, NC

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     "MEGA" NEWS FLASH!!!     

GEOCOINFEST 2011 COMING TO CHARLOTTE/ROCK HILL!!


That’s right, the Queen City is going to be hosting it’s first ever Geocaching MEGA event in 2011. More specifically, the main event will be held in Rock Hill, SC sometime next fall. The announcement was made September 19th at the conclusion of the Geocoinfest 2010 event held in Minneapolis, MN. This is the biggest Geocaching-related event to hit the Carolinas since Geowoodstock V was held in Raleigh back in 2007!

For those of you unfamiliar with Geocoinfest, it is a national gathering of geocoin enthusiasts, coin vendors, and folks just like you who want to claim that elusive “mega event” icon for your Geocaching profile.

The details will be worked out over the coming months, so check in to the GCGC website for updates, but here’s the early scoop… shhhh. The event will be held somewhere around this time next fall (September/October). There will be multiple “regular” events in and around Charlotte for you to attend in addition to the main event.

We’ll be looking for volunteers to help staff the event, and those requests will be posted as soon as we have the details from the organizing committee. So plan to join in with your fellow Carolina Cachers and let’s show the world how we party in the South!!

Stay tuned on the forums for more information and we hope to see you all there!

Social sites have already been created for those that would like to join them and follow any updates made about Geocoinfest 2011.

          


Here is the winning bid video that was submitted in partnership by the GCGC and YoGO
with support from the SCGA, NCGO, USCGA, Band of Cachers and others.



When tested, some email programs didn't allow the embedded video which you should see above, so check to see if you have the video as an attachment. If not, you can view our winning bid video by clicking on this link. To see the fun had in making our video, come laugh with is as you watch the Blooper Reel.

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     FEATURED ARTICLE     
~ by Harwell5

What Happened to Your Log?


I just finished hiking the 2-mile trail and arrived at the posted coordinates for the cache and begin my search. Five minutes go by, then ten, and then fifteen and I still can't find it. Ok, time to break into the backpack and pull out the info sheet or paperless caching device and check the hint, "No hint!" that's ok, let's check out the previous 5 logs for some clues or a little help.
  1. "Found it"
  2. "Thanks"
  3. "TFTC!"
  4. "TNLNSL!"
  5. "Sent from my phone using….."
WHAT?!! THAT'S ALL I GET TO WORK WITH?!! How am I supposed to be able to find it with logs like that? This was a 2-mile hike and that's all that you wrote. What happened to your log?

How many times have you been in that position? Wanting a little more help with finding a cache and not being able to receive it because of what is quickly becoming known as a "lame log". Some of you may even see it as it is posted to a watched cache page or, better yet, your own cache page. That is the trend that seems to be taking over the geocacher's logs. So that begs the question, "What happened to the good logs that told a short story, that were a small paragraph or, at least, were a sentence or two long mentioning the cache was in good/bad shape?" Those were great or helpful logs and most were great to read and would make you feel like you were actually there during that hunt.

Maybe you are new and didn't know, maybe you have been around a while and someone showed you the "acronyms", which you just love using, or maybe you have been around since the beginning and are tired of writing anything else because you find too many to care about the actual written log and just post a copy/paste "cache run" log. Whatever your reason, take some time to back up and think about the cache you just found. It may have just been a "Park & Grab" to you, but to the cache owner, it was put out there so you could have another smiley. Don't they deserve more than that?

Well, the folks over a Geocacher University have put together a great way to understand how "Writing Great Online Logs" will benefit the community, how it will benefit the cache owner and how it will benefit YOU! They show you the 4 T's that can help guide you in writing a great log. So, before you submit that next "found it" log, take a little time and read the article, "Writing Great Online Logs". We're sure you will not look at writing logs the same way again.

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     CLUB NEWS     

2nd EDITION GCGC GEOCOIN

After an exhaustive selection process involving your votes, a case study, and some full-contact “rock-paper-scissors”, we finally have a winning design for the 2nd edition of the GCGC geocoin. Congratulations goes to rvstauff for his winning entry.

This is the winning design.

Updated pictures of a graphic design and the sample will be made available on the 2010 GCGC Geocoin page.

Coins Specs: 1.75" diameter, soft enamel, Groundspeak tracking capability and our signature custom icon . The plating will not be determined until after the samples arrive, but it will either be Nickel or Gold.

We are now accepting pre-orders for this limited edition trackable! Only 100 coins will be minted. After that, this coin design will be retired. This year, as a special incentive, we are offering a discount for multiple coins ordered:
  • First coin = $15.00
  • Subsequent coins = $10.00 each
  • FREE SHIPPING!
All discounted coins must be included in your original order. To pre-order, send an email to treasurer@charlottegeocaching.com with the number of coins you would like to order and what method of payment you prefer. We will accept cash, checks and payments through Paypal. If you elect to pay by cash or check, you will receive an email with directions on where and how to send your payment. If you elect to pay through Paypal, you can order now by selecting the number of coins below and clicking on the "Buy Now" button. If you have trouble with the "Buy Now" button or would like more coins than listed, please send an email as noted above and an invoice will be sent to you.
* Since this newsletter went out, it has been determined that there is an error in the "buy now" button and it will not function properly.
To order, please send an email as requested above.


For more discussion or questions about the new coin, visit the 2010 GCGC Geocoin page. An announcement as to which was plating is selected will be made on this thread.


WE HAVE A BANNER!

Back in May, we unveiled our new GCGC Banner during the Spring Blast Events at Martha Rivers Park in Gastonia, NC. We had a great time and a great turn out for the event and CITO. If you were able to attend the event, then you know how much fun we had. If you weren't able to attend, try to make plans to attend our next Spring Blast event in 2011. Details on it will be announced in the Spring newsletter. You won't want to miss it. OH! And the Banner is trackable! How many in attendance at the May event actually noticed it?

Please let us know if you can't see the image



ADOPT A STREET!

Back in March of this year, a thread was started on the website with the question, "Has anyone looked into the GCGC adopting a street or highway?" and the GCGC Adopt A Street efforts began. In May, we got word that our application had been approved, signs had been placed by the city and plans were began to have our first "Adopt A Street CITO with the GCGC" event. The inaugrual event was held on June 5 and the rest is history. A big THANK YOU goes to our very own foxult for getting the efforts started by asking the question and taking the time to head up the application process. The pictures below are of the inaugural event (the fox has a hand on the sign in the first picture and sporting the two thumbs up in the second). GOOD JOB FOXULT!

Please let us know if you can't see the image      Please let us know if you can't see the image



HELP SUPPORT YOUR CLUB!

"How can I help?" is a common question, but all too often not asked because we all have busy lives. However, isn't technology great?! You can support the club in other ways.
  •    The GCGC is no stranger, so click on over and add us as a way to keep informed about the club.

  •     Take a look at what we have available in our Cafe Press store as well and get your own GCGC shirt, hat, etc.

  •    Or consider making a donation of any amount through Payapl to support the GCGC by clicking the donate button.
However you decide to help, please know that everything you do goes entirely to support the club and it's continued efforts to put together great events so that geocachers like you and us can get together and have a great time. Take a look at the real "smileys" on the faces in the above pictures and you will see that we do enjoy the great fellowship that this hobby/sport/obsession has brought to our lives.

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     FAMILY FRIENDLY CACHING     
~ by Therapaint

Traditional caches and the methods used for hunting them have been the primary focus of previous family-friendly caching articles, but this time I offer for your consideration the virtual cache.

Groundspeak stopped accepting virtual caches for publication several years ago, but the existing ones were grandfathered in, so most of them are still out there waiting to be discovered. I found my first virtual cache on an RV trip through the Shenandoah Valley a few years ago, and my family still talks and laughs about the experience to this day. If you're ever in the Natural Bridge, VA area, give "Merlin at Work?" a try - I would go into detail about the cache, but you just have to experience this one.

That's the great thing about virtual caches: the experience. There's no ammo can, no trinkets, no log book, but most offer a unique perspective on the area in which they're located. Every time we're in the planning phase of a vacation I always check to see if there are any virtual caches in the area. Typically there are several, and I make it a priority to include the search for them in our plans.

"Butterflies are Free" is a virtual cache located on Oak Island, NC, and we found this one while waiting for check-in time at our motel. Much to our delight, the cache was (and still is) located in a beautiful nature preserve which had a hands-on museum that the kids loved and a salt marsh view that my wife loved. I enjoyed the whole thing and got to log a smiley as well - I loved that!

There are virtual caches located all over the mall in Washington D.C., and the majority of them direct you to a unique aspect of the war memorials. The kids learned more about the history of our country while seeking these caches than they did from the reading they performed in preparation for the trip. There's even a virtual cach, The Actor Really Did Break A Leg, located at the Ford Theater where president Lincoln was assassinated; this cache was one of our favorites.

The hunt for virtual caches has taken my family from the waterfront in Seattle to the southernmost point of the Untied Sates in Key West, Florida and many places in between. There is usually some type of information to find at the location, and the facts you uncover must be emailed to the owner to get credit for logging the find. The kids love the fact-finding aspect, and they enjoy taking family photos nearby.

It's great to treat your family to places and things that the average tourist never sees, and it's a nice change of pace from searching for a cache on a guardrail on an interstate overpass (not that there's anything wrong with that) while your family is frowning at you in the car. We have logged over eighty virtual caches, and we can call up a specific memory of a fantastic experience from just about every one. There are so many things to see in this land of the free and home of the brave - do yourself and your family a favor by getting out there to explore and let some virtual caches guide you along!

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     CONTEST     


The Great Theme Cache Contest


We’re beginning a brand new contest within the GCGC and everyone gets to participate!

The theme of this contest is “themes”… clever huh? (hope you’re creative juices are better than mine). And here’s how it works....
  • Each quarter, we will post a new thread on the forums stating the current theme. Then, whoever wants to participate will create and submit a brand new cache to the Geocaching.com website using the current theme.
  • “Theming” can be anything you can think of… a creative container, a unique location, a clever description… whatever you think best fits the given theme. Have fun with it!!
  • A special banner graphic will be uploaded for you to use on your cache page to signify it being part of the contest. The banner will be unique for each different theme (4 per year).
  • At the end of the quarter, we will begin a new theme and retire the old one. However, the caches may remain in place as long as you wish.
  • After the theme is retired, we’ll have a short voting/politicking period on the forum (+/- 2 weeks) for your favorite. A final winner will be selected by popular vote.
  • The 4 winners, one for each quarter, will be put to a final vote where you will determine the “Theme Cache of the Year”. That cache owner will receive a barely coveted prize and a special icon to display on your cache page!

Our first theme is...

“MOVIES”



Coming Ocotber 1st through December 31st.


Be thinking about it and watch for full details on the GCGC website.

A few general rules (we’ll try to keep them minimal):
  • All geocaches must follow the general geocaching.com rules as listed on the geocaching.com website for pulication.
  • All published geocaches must be within the greater Charlotte area, as identified on the club icon as seen at the top or bottom of this newsletter.
  • All geocaches must be published and found within the 3 month period specified in each “theme” thread on the forum.
  • You may submit as many entries as you like on the thread page once the cache is published. Theme Contest Boards
  • Selection of all winners will be by popular vote, however the Board of Directors reserves the right to intervene whenever necessary. (i.e. “ties”)
  • The GCGC reserves the right to award prizes as they are available from the sparsely decorated “GCGC prize closet”. (We’re not fancy enough to have a vault yet)

Have fun and happy “theming”. (I gotta get better at this wordsmithing thing if I’m gonna win…)

ROC

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     NCGO NEWS     
     YoGO News     
Fifth Annual NCGO Fall Fling!


The NCGO Fall Fling 2010 will be at Lake Norman State Park this year on the November 6th weekend. Several events will surround the weekend, but the main event will be on Saturday. Check the FF wikispaces page for more details. In order for NCGO to remain a strong local advocacy group for Geocaching in North Carolina and to put on Fall Fling, we need funding. Here are several ways to help, plus a volunteer opportunity.

Visit the NCGO Fall Fling Store and get your FFV merchandise today, such as:
  • NCGO 2010 Fall Fling T shirt
  • NCGO FFV Geocoin
  • Five years of NCGO Deck of Cards (see who made the cards here)
  • NCGO 2011 Calendar
Volunteering!

We will need volunteers to help with the activities at the Fall Fling which will be held on Saturday November 6, 2010 at Lake Norman State Park. If you are interested in volunteering (no experience necessary) please let me know or check here and I will connect you with the right people.

We look forward to seeing you at the Fall Fling!
Rob aka Maingray
NCGO President

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ACROSS THE BORDER


The York County Geocaching Organization will be coordinating a Geocaching 101 class on Saturday, Dec. 4th from 1-3PM at the York County Library (Moore Room) located at 138 E. Black St. Rock HIll, SC

Learn about Geocaching, the high tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices at the York County Library. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment. It allows you to spend time in nature, meet and make friends, and takes you places right in your own town that you never knew where there.

Please visit us at www.yogosc.org and our YoGO Facebook fan page for information on all upcoming events and happenings as well as geocaching.com.

YoGO, York County Geocaching Organization

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Please feel free to forward this newsletter to any of your friends. If this is your first newsletter as a new member, we welcome you to the Greater Charlotte Geocaching Club and thank you for your support in joining in the forums. We would like to hear from you. Let us know what you would like to see in future newsletters by contacting us or posting your thoughts or suggestions on this thread in our forums. We hope you all benefit from this newsletter and hope to see you at an event soon. Until then........


We'll see you on the trail,
The Greater Charlotte Geocaching Club Team


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