Welcome to the 40th Saga Los Angeles Ski Club season!
I have been now been involved with the club 22 years. This season, I repeat the role of President. I was also President of the club 20 years ago and am amazed at the changes our club, the travel industry, and society and endured over that period.
During the 90s, Saga was a very dynamic club with over 200 active members. About a quarter of membership changed each season and new young(ish) members brought fresh ideas and connections. Saga worked with travel agents to design packaged tours for our members that included discounted airfare. Marketing trips was via Frontier’s Magazine advertising and Pride Festival booths. Homophobia was prevalent. Many Saga members viewed club socials as their primary social outlet. Closeted members were pervasive in Saga. The Internet was a slow expensive fad.
Today, Saga has a membership of 50 active members. This membership includes mostly the same people. The Saga Board arranges all travel packages and post 9/11 security measures make club provided air travel difficult. Frontier’s Magazine is not even a memory for most people and Pride Festivals have morphed from information providers to entertainment venues. Marketing trips is via the cheap, fast, utility that the Internet has become. Homophobia is less common and many do not require sexual orientation segregated social events.
All the while, Saga has consistently provided well planned ski trips at or below prices available from other travel providers. Saga also has remained financially strong and stable over the past 40 years. We intend to continue doing what we do.
I would like to facilitate our future success by expanding our digital presence. As any middle aged guy knows, we are becoming invisible. To mitigate Saga’s midlife crises, the Board has begun a new web services provider, we are learning how to improve our web hits, and we will attempt to increase our digital content via Instagram, meet-up, and our own website.
Please discuss how all members can help. If you are a Instagram pro, talk to others. It is incredible what a hashtag can do. I have never hashtagged anything but plan on starting this fall. I receive a wonderful collection of pictures from members on each Saga trip. A fraction of these images on the web would make our club more than just appear. It would make Saga appear youthful and relevant.
Hope to ski you soon!