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TOW
05-21-2006, 20:40
I'd like to here some of your opinions about this years trail days, what did you like the most, what you disliked the most, and so on.............

MrSparex
05-21-2006, 21:24
I just returned from trail days. I liked the water parade best. My 8 year old son loved it and says "hi" to all of you reading this. A tall girl named Jackie helped me set up a cheapie wal-mart tent in the dark (with her dog Sydney). I met Clothesline and her daughters. I saw the dude with the AT tatooed on his entire back (and barbed wire around his wrist). I saw a guy almost get arrested for lighting up a joint in front of the cops (no comment). We had a bad electrical storm friday night. People hollered and screamed all night...couldn't sleep so I packed up Sat afternoon and come home. Okay so I'm a wimp! Glad I went though. I know to avoid tent city next year or use ear plugs (which I had with me and didn't use). Very nice people in this town.

Lone Wolf
05-21-2006, 22:26
I'm glad it's over. It's been a long month.

Newb
05-21-2006, 22:57
Shouldn't this be Trail Days 2006?
I had fun, even though I was tied to a vendor's booth. I picked up some very funny stories, especially some shared with me and J.D. by Damascus' finest about idiots in the crowd. One hint...never light up a joint and offer it the guy behind you without looking over your shoulder first...that guy might turn out to be a uniformed cop. :)

Anyways..the police were very cool. The crowd were all very cool. It was a lot of fun.

By the way, Mother Nature had her camera stolen. So, if you have any photos she might want, send them to her. She's pretty bummed.

Highlights? Dinner with Ms. Janet. Rhyme and Reason...Rhyme sang me a lullaby at Sicily's Pizza. Ummm...that wasn't whiskey..it was moonshine. Pancakes on Thursday morning in Malas tent and his cowboy coffee. The Billville tent. The pirate island, and of course...selling my Magna Screens!

Frolicking Dinosaurs
05-21-2006, 22:57
Stayed in the tent city - the swamp area. Was camped on a rise in the swamp so no complaints. The port-a-potties needed to be pumped more and some gravel would help the mess where cars drive in the swamp.

The kids whooped and howled until about 2 AM Friday night. Things were a bit tamer Saturday night (maybe because they had some moonshine and were passed out). I enjoyed watching most of the revelry thought my old body just can't party like it's 1969 anymore.

My favorite part was camping near a group of young thru-hikers and listening to them. The joy and energy of youth... especially youth on a mission.

I didn't spot a certain Wolf during my entire visit and may be forced to photoshop a kilt on the unseen Wolf.

Mother Nature's camera has been found and is being returned.

Nightwalker
05-21-2006, 22:59
I'm glad it's over. It's been a long month.
Yeah, but it was fun...

Mother Nature
05-22-2006, 06:29
By the way, Mother Nature had her camera stolen. So, if you have any photos she might want, send them to her. She's pretty bummed.


Yes! It was taken from a store but not by a thief but someone doing a nice deed. The finder took awhile to report finding it so we all had to conclude it was stolen. I didn't learn it was found until Sunday night at home when I got a call from the finder. I posted the story in another thread. I thank everyone that listened to my misery and offered to send pictures.

As far as this thread goes I particularly liked the variety of vendors, the cake eating contest and the talent show. It never gets old finding friends' faces wandering in the crowds and making new friends to meet next year.

Mother Nature

StarLyte
05-22-2006, 07:16
I'm glad it's over. It's been a long month.

I definitely understand that.

I had a wonderful time in Damascus-always do. I have many beautiful photos of Trail Days I'll be uploading on Tuesday. The best of memories. Met many new friends and got to see old ones.

Marsha

Cookerhiker
05-22-2006, 08:57
The highlights for me was seeing fellow hikers from my 2004 and 2005 hikes and meeting so many WBers at the Saturday morning breakfast. Nice to finally put some faces with the names. Also bought some gear at good Trail Days Special prices. The Town of Damascus proved to be excellent hosts for such a big gathering. As someone said, the police were cool.

Mother Nature, I'm glad your camera turned up.

Lowlights? Some of the forums...Nah, I won't go public.

Lone Wolf
05-22-2006, 11:22
I was at the main campground this morning. The place was virtually spotless.

Gray Blazer
05-22-2006, 12:21
I was at the main campground this morning. The place was virtually spotless.

That's good, right? I missed TD's this year. I'm gonna try and make it next year.

Local
05-22-2006, 12:25
The first two photo albums for 2006 are online: http://www.traildays.info/photos.html

Please let me know if you have an online photo collection from this Trail Days. My email is [email protected]

The unofficial Trail Days Committee, http://www.traildays.info/wolf.html, has come up with a number of suggestions for next year. I'll be taking these to a committee meeting Thursday night. I'll also copy suggestions from this thread and present them. If you have other suggestions contact me.

In a few days I'll post photos from the Ridiculous Gear Contest on traildays.info. Some of these photos may be disturbing.

Local
05-22-2006, 12:31
Oh, yeah, I need some advice. As Wolf says, the campground was amazingly clean. However, there was one group which left a mess. Ironically I have photos of all of them at the campsite. How should this be handled? I would prefer to keep this low key and maybe let them offer to stay over next year and help with the cleanup.

max patch
05-22-2006, 12:38
Oh, yeah, I need some advice. As Wolf says, the campground was amazingly clean. However, there was one group which left a mess. Ironically I have photos of all of them at the campsite. How should this be handled? I would prefer to keep this low key and maybe let them offer to stay over next year and help with the cleanup.

Screw em.

Post your pics -- with captions -- all over the web. Slobs don't deserve any special consideration.

Lone Wolf
05-22-2006, 12:57
Oh, yeah, I need some advice. As Wolf says, the campground was amazingly clean. However, there was one group which left a mess. Ironically I have photos of all of them at the campsite. How should this be handled? I would prefer to keep this low key and maybe let them offer to stay over next year and help with the cleanup.
They called themselves "Riff Raff"

Frolicking Dinosaurs
05-22-2006, 13:37
Local, I'm with those who say post the pics of the Riff-Raff and let the hikers deal with their own. Hiker are a community just as Damascus is a community. There are standards of conduct that are expected and means to 'encourage' all members to meet those standards in both. Damascus would not tolerate someone leaving their yard in pig-sty condition and I assure you hikers won't tolerate it either. Ve have vays of making riff-raff into model LNT citizens....

Local
05-22-2006, 13:47
OK, here's a link to the photo which was posted earlier:

http://www.traildays.info/stealth.html

Clothespin moved out earlier and is not responsible for leaving the area trashed. There were a lot of people moving in and out, but this is part of the original crew. The site was cleaned up by the team from Backpacker, the Get Out More Team. It took us almost an hour to cut down the plastic tarps and nylon cord strung up in the trees. Not cool, Riff Raff. Maybe next year you can hang around and help us clean up the area.

chomp
05-22-2006, 14:39
Not to be confused with the Rif Raf's (single f's) - two formers thru hikers from Ohio who are part of Billville. I met a few members of this crew and they seemed pretty nice. Maybe (hopefully) they just need a little education.

Local
05-22-2006, 15:28
Chomp, I agree, they were personable young men, and when I walked into their campsite Tuesday before the campground opened, they were welcoming and also proud of what they had built. I figure this is just a lack of communication somewhere, someone promised to dismantle all of that stuff but then didn't. I've just added a photo of the Get Out More Team at the site: http://www.traildays.info/stealth.html

Ironically, I was at the former Riff Raff site last night talking to a bunch of drunks I had encouraged to move away from the roadside campsite they were on, and when I went back this afternoon they had left all their beer cans and bottles. These were not hikers, by the way, just some good old boys. We have less polite names for them here. But as Wolf said the overall campground is in great shape. Tent City may have sounded like Woodstock, but the environmental ethic was far superior.

Pirate
05-22-2006, 15:37
Waited over an hour for the shuttle bus in front of Sundogs. Was heading to Dots for some liquid refreshments. Decided to walk the rest of the way. Found out that the shuttle driver did not know there was a pick up in front of Sundogs.

TOW
05-22-2006, 16:36
OK, here's a link to the photo which was posted earlier:

http://www.traildays.info/stealth.html

Clothespin moved out earlier and is not responsible for leaving the area trashed. There were a lot of people moving in and out, but this is part of the original crew. The site was cleaned up by the team from Backpacker, the Get Out More Team. It took us almost an hour to cut down the plastic tarps and nylon cord strung up in the trees. Not cool, Riff Raff. Maybe next year you can hang around and help us clean up the area.are they hiking this year?

Mother Nature
05-22-2006, 18:03
Wanderer,
Do you mean Clothesline and the Garland family? They are sectioning part of VT and I believe parts of PA.

Mother Nature

Preacher Dude
05-22-2006, 18:04
Had a great time at trail days....the people of Damascus are wonderful and do a marvelous job with this celebration. Enjoyed seeing again a lot of the folks that I met while doing "trail magic" at Deep Gap (GA) and Addis Gap during April and May. Glad to see and hear that the vast majority of the 300 hikers that I met are still hiking and have not quit. Stayed at "tent city" Thurs, Fri and Sat nights.....little noisy at 2AM,3AM and 4AM all nights....but really not too bad where we were.....porta potty door slamming might could stand some improvement.....but on the whole everyone I talked to was having a marvelous time as we did.

Krewzer
05-22-2006, 18:52
The whole weekend was big “Highlight” for me. I had a great time. The only person I heard not having a good time was the Thru-Hiker that barfed in his tent. (LOL! Sometimes you're the windshield; sometimes you're the bug). But what the Hey, he got over it pretty quickly and had a good time for the remainder of the weekend. Too bad about the Riff Raff, post 'em, if they've any class at all, they'll do better next time.

Highlights:
This year's crop of happy, hopeful "Thru Hikers", the parade, Billville, Hobo Central, Main St., Dot's, Cowboys, BBQ Chicken at the Fire Hall, Fire truck delivering Mrs. Tinman's birthday cake, Rabbit winning a Hennessy Hammock (I’m hoping to con him out of it), Contra Dancing, White Blaze breakfast, Mala's psychedelic pancakes and CookerHikers coffee cake (those jelly donuts weren't bad either), Blue Grass at the Place, grown men crying thru all the Appalachian Trail films...

Seeing old friends I haven't seen lately;
Grits, Rabbit, St Pete Sue, Lightning Boltz, EZ, Pilgrim, Hawke, Walkin' Eagle, Fig, Just Visiting, Vapor, Gray Squirrel, Grampy, ATTroll and the WhiteBlaze clan, Sly, Sherrill, Jo Jo Smiley, Nomad, Red Wolf, Cantaloupe, Crazy Horse (yea, even Crazy Horse), Hefe', Paparazzi, Miss Janet...


Seeing friends I haven’t seen in a long time;
Mudbug, my Cajun buddy and the reigning 2000 Trail Magic Magnet Champion. Les saiz bon ton roule’ mon amee. (Le Krewzette says we may have to make another run to Whiskey River Landing soon for a bit of drinkin’ and two-steppin'.)

Making new friends;
Skylark, Mouse, Rayguy, Rascal, Jumping Jacks

Seeing all the "trail characters";
Pirate and Wee Willy, Lone Wolf, Baltimore Jack, Model T and the Singing Horseman, Miss Janet and her small but growing army (...uhhhh, might a been a Navy with a sprinkling of jar-heads this year), Warren Doyle and his psychedelic XXX Large Tie Dyed Tee Shirt, White Blazers, Blue Blazers, Red Blazers, No blazers
...come to think of it, all my friends fit in this category.

Old friends I wish I'd seen there;
Sgt. Rock…(we really missed you Top), Lab Rat, Raru and Sisu, Harper, Silver, DownUnda, Worm, TeePot, Yak and Yati, Gilligan, Mountain Laurel, Archie Bunker, Trainwreck, U Turn, the barkeeps from the Port Clinton Hotel...and many, many others.

Hey!!! Did they really burn Miss Janet's pirate ship? Man! I wanted to see that.

Skidsteer
05-22-2006, 18:52
Our family had a great time at Trail Days 2006.

Got to reunite and catch up with several hikers from past years( in particular Early Bird, GA-ME 2005 ). Bought a few pieces of gear at decent prices. Met some good folks from WB at the breakfast Saturday morning and really enjoyed the band on Saturday night. I even remember most of it.:D

Thanks for puttin' up with us, Damascus!

Mountain Man
05-22-2006, 20:51
A great time was had all weekend. Got to Tent City around 2:30 Friday morning. Some of the highlights were seeing some old friends and making new ones, getting to see some of the thru hikers I met in Georgia and meeting a lot of others. Great music and food. The vendors, parade, talent contest. Heck it was just all good and "Damascus did a great job putting this all on." All the locals I met were especially friendly as they always have been everytime I've been there. Did Hard Core on Sunday and had a great time. It was impressive at the number of hikers there to work and the amount of work that was done. I got to meet a few WhiteBlazers but not as many as I hoped to. Maybe next year.

TOW
05-23-2006, 12:45
keep them stories comin..............

Hammock Hanger
05-23-2006, 14:09
MN: Glad you got your camera back. I unfortunately LOST mine. :( ( BooHoo) It was in the back of my jeep and I think it must have fallen out when one of various hikers I gave a lift to unloaded their pack.

Trail Days was a blast. Hammock Hanger

Footslogger
05-23-2006, 14:20
Back home and struggling through my first full day of "de-tox". Drank more beer in 3 days than I do in 3 weeks (or more). That plus the long hours ...YIKES !!

But as always it was great to see the many members of my "trail family". Got to put in a day of trail maintenance (new shelter) down by Kincora on Sunday. Gonna be a nice addition and will break up the trail nicely between 19E/Moreland Gap/Dennis Cove Road.

Hardest part for me was driving my wife up (BadAss Turtle) on the parkway near Glasgow and then heading to the airport for a flight home. Lots of driving and flying and now I'm back at work wondering why in the sam hell I'm here and she's out there ??????? Definitely something wrong with this picture !!

'Slogger

colbys
05-23-2006, 17:10
my first trail days since 96'alot different,but had a great time.didnt get to the whiteblaze breakfast,sorry overslept..
kids were makin a ruckuss till all hours but who cares,i brought earplugs,and used em.
cops were great and very friendly.
although didnt se any body from 1995 year that i knew in the parade,it still was all good.
already missing the experience,goddam i love the AT.

TOW
05-23-2006, 17:51
did everybody get to meet the new chief of police?

TOW
05-23-2006, 17:51
did everybody get to meet the new chief of police?i know miss janet got wooed by him.............

Uncle Silly
05-23-2006, 18:00
Local, I need to get in touch with you regarding a pic from the traildays.info site (displayed prior to the start of TDs) ... I can't PM or email you from here ... would you PM me here? thanks!

Hikerhead
05-23-2006, 18:22
MN: Glad you got your camera back. I unfortunately LOST mine. :( ( BooHoo) It was in the back of my jeep and I think it must have fallen out when one of various hikers I gave a lift to unloaded their pack.

Trail Days was a blast. Hammock Hanger

HH. Do you have any names of these hikers????Maybe one picked it up after you left??

Mother Nature
05-23-2006, 18:59
MN: Glad you got your camera back. I unfortunately LOST mine. :( ( BooHoo) It was in the back of my jeep and I think it must have fallen out when one of various hikers I gave a lift to unloaded their pack.


Maybe you should post this loss on the thread just started here on WB about missing or lost items. I am so sorry HH. As suggested, perhaps one of the hikers inadvertently picked it up and doesn't know how to reach you?

I know how bad I felt when I thought mine was stolen. When mine arrives (soon I hope!) I will be glad to make copies of pictures and send them to you.

MN

WalkinHome
05-23-2006, 20:14
Hi Local,

Think many folks would thank you and the town of Damascus if one or two porta-potties could be put downtown as folks always seem to be looking for a place for relief.

Local
05-23-2006, 20:47
Scotsghost, e-mail me at [email protected], or pick up contact information from www.traildays.info (http://www.traildays.info) or www.damascus.org (http://www.damascus.org). If that doesn't work let me know through this forum and I'll send you a phone number.

Walkinhome, I'll add your comments to the list I will be presenting to the Trail Days committee this Thursday (May 25). I've copied all related comments from whiteblaze and this will be presented also. I don't know why there aren't porta-potties downtown, since we have them lots of other places. Good idea.

Just for reference, the group I'm with "inherited" Trail Days about 10 days before the event due to the May 2 election results. The two guys who were running the show dropped out, and the mayor asked us to do this. Our group didn't know ***** about the organization of Trail Days but there were a lot of us and most of them worked very hard to make it happen. I just hung out in Tent City drinking Mala's coffee.

Just Jeff
05-24-2006, 02:33
Any news of the homemade gear contest?

Footslogger
05-24-2006, 08:21
I was there. First prize went to a guy who built a tent out of Tyvek. It was a Wanderlust Nomad knockoff with Tyvek in the place of silnylon, including a floor.

Only problem I saw with it was that where the Wanderlust used noseeum mesh it had solid Tyvek panels. My guess is that it would be kinda warm inside.

I didn't really see much of the other entries ...at least, not enough to comment on them.

'Slogger

Local
05-24-2006, 08:42
Just Jeff, I haven't posted the photos yet, but will do so in a few days. There were only three entries due to the confusion of changing the management of Trail Days only a few days before the event. Next year Backpacker will sponsor the Homemade Gear Contest again, as they have done in the past.

Red Hat
05-29-2006, 11:46
Highlights? The whole thing was a highlight! Although I didn't get to stay at tentcity (warm and dry in my RV at the Ironhorse Campground), I did get to visit several times. I enjoyed Whiteblaze breakfast and meeting so many friends here. I loved the talent show. All the vendors tents were soooo tempting. The parade was a blast. But most of all, I loved seeing all my buddies from 05.

Sly
05-29-2006, 14:12
I was there. First prize went to a guy who built a tent out of Tyvek. It was a Wanderlust Nomad knockoff with Tyvek in the place of silnylon, including a floor.

Actually Kurt's 1st prototype was made from Tyvek.

Highlights: Mala's coffee, Trail Angel Mary's cooking, hanging out in greater Billville, a little of this and a little of that! ;)

Hammock Hanger
05-29-2006, 15:55
RED HAT: I saw you across the street in the crowd near the end of the parade. I called out to you and tried to disengage myself from the group I was with but by then you and melted into the groups. I saw you and there was another RH lady dressed up and watching the parade down on the road just before it crossed over the creek. Yeah, Red Hats!!!

Doctari
05-29-2006, 19:48
Actually Kurt's 1st prototype was made from Tyvek.

Slightly longer version: Kurt used a tarp, got a BIG roll of Tyvec, made a tarp from it, figured there had to be something better: not a tarp but not a tent either. Came up with the Nomad. Actually sold / gave away a few I think.


Doctari.

Local
05-29-2006, 21:04
Trail Days 2006 Homemade Gear Contest - winners

http://www.traildays.info/homemade.html

Next year this event will again be sponsored by Backpacker. There was some confusion this year when the people doing Trail Days lost an election and quit.

Red Hat
05-30-2006, 18:28
Hammock Hanger, I'm so sorry I didn't hear you! I would have loved to meet you finally in person. I did meet and talk to the Red Hat Lady from Damascus who was there. It was great fun.

BooBoo
05-31-2006, 00:39
The only thing I didn't like about this years TD's is that I didn't get to go. Oh well I can't complain. My brother Yogi hasn't been able to go since '02.

WalkinHome
05-31-2006, 21:23
For Billville pictures and other off the wall stuff check out http://gallery.backcountry.net/BillvilleTD06Pirate

charge before use
06-11-2006, 19:29
There was a whole lot worse problem with the "Riff Raff" bunch than just keeping half the campground awake all night with their asinine whooping and hollering. We had the unfortunate luck to be camped near the Riff Raff compound. Friday night around 11 pm, an extremely intoxicated kid (we found out later he was just 15) staggered up to us from the vicinity of the Riff Raff camp. He passed out a few minutes later and could not be woken. One of our group went down to the Riff Raff camp and tried to get some help or info on the kid but no one there would admit to knowing him or offered to help. They were too busy doing their 15th top-of-their-lungs drunken rendition of "Lay Down Sally", I guess.

The kid's condition worsened and the EMT's were called. Which was a damn good thing. We found out the next day that the child was in an alcohol-induced COMA, and would have died if he hadn't been rushed to Abingdon hospital that night. Nice bunch of buddies he had at the Riff Raff camp, huh?

We don't need idiots like this Riff Raff group at Trail Days. Next year, the police should be given pictures of the group's main organizers and they should all be banned from the event.

attroll
06-11-2006, 20:21
That section of the campground has been loud the last two years I have gone to Trail Days, although it was a lot louder this year then last year. The police were a lot stricter last year then they were this year I think.

I am glad the kid stumbled onto you guys because if he had passed out anywhere else it sounds like he would have died.

Nokia
06-11-2006, 21:40
:banana


Hey!!! Did they really burn Miss Janet's pirate ship? Man! I wanted to see that.

Yeah we burned most of the cardboard on Saturday. Unfortunately the weather didn't cooperate with out cardboard ship. But it looked alright on Friday. And I really enjoyed Jack christining it for us. The "Quivering Thigh" will sail on in my memories.:banana

bfitz
06-11-2006, 23:15
That section of the campground has been loud the last two years I have gone to Trail Days, although it was a lot louder this year then last year. The police were a lot stricter last year then they were this year I think.

I am glad the kid stumbled onto you guys because if he had passed out anywhere else it sounds like he would have died.

Quite a few people partied around that area...and hooting and hollering is a part of trail days I assume people would expect. Glad you guys were looking out for the kid, but being angry at a bunch of other intoxicated people because an intoxicated person none of them knew passed out near you seems uncalled for. As for leaving the place a mess, that's bad form...sounds like one of those "I thought someone else was taking care of it..." situations. Certainly only unforgiveable if intentionally done or left uncorrected.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
06-12-2006, 06:31
There was a whole lot worse problem with the "Riff Raff" bunch than just keeping half the campground awake all night with their asinine whooping and hollering... an extremely intoxicated kid ... passed out ... could not be woken... Riff Raff camp would not admit to knowing him or offer to help... The kid's condition worsened and the EMT's were called. ... the child was in an alcohol-induced COMA, and would have died if he hadn't been rushed to Abingdon hospital that night.

We don't need idiots like this Riff Raff group at Trail Days. .... they should all be banned from the event.Had this been an adult in the company of other adults, I would agree with Bfitz in saying that it is uncalled for to be upset with the Riff Raff group. However, this was a 15-year-old kid who it seems was supplied liquor in a quantity that could have easily killed him by those partying at the Riff-Raff camp. How welcoming do you think residents of Damascus would be to Trail Days in the future if one of the local 15-year-old boys died from alcohol poisoning as a result of partying there?

The bottom line is that the Riff-Raff group crossed the line from having a good time to being just plain obnoxious in a lot more ways than just leaving their campsite a mess and keeping everyone up half the night. CBU has suggested banning them and I'm thinking this might be a really wise thing to do.
<o></o>
I don't want to see Trail Days go away because a handful of idiots think it is OK to give kids massive quantities of booze and then ignore the problem they created. IF CBU's group hadn't handled Riff Raff's problem, we would be facing the dilemma of having had a 15-year-old kid die during Trail Days and guys like Local would have a hell of time selling Damascus residents on the wisdom of continuing this event.<o></o>
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Lone Wolf
06-12-2006, 07:55
I doubt these "Riff Raff" douche bags will be back next year. If they are, I'll personally pay them a visit.:cool:

Frolicking Dinosaurs
06-12-2006, 09:39
I doubt these "Riff Raff" douche bags will be back next year. If they are, I'll personally pay them a visit.:cool:And a couple of dinos will have your back.

bfitz
06-12-2006, 12:58
Had this been an adult in the company of other adults, I would agree with Bfitz in saying that it is uncalled for to be upset with the Riff Raff group. However, this was a 15-year-old kid who it seems was supplied liquor in a quantity that could have easily killed him by those partying at the Riff-Raff camp. How welcoming do you think residents of Damascus would be to Trail Days in the future if one of the local 15-year-old boys died from alcohol poisoning as a result of partying there?

The bottom line is that the Riff-Raff group crossed the line from having a good time to being just plain obnoxious in a lot more ways than just leaving their campsite a mess and keeping everyone up half the night. CBU has suggested banning them and I'm thinking this might be a really wise thing to do.
Are you certain they gave him the booze? (You say "it seems" they did...) In the dark with bottles and coolers nearby and lots of people coming and going, a persistent 15 year old can manage to get wasted without any "help". (You said you asked them who he was and they said they didn't know...)
Now, we should all be vigilant against things like this happening...even an adult hiker could get into that kind of trouble drinking moonshine and what-not...we should always be on the alert for someone in trouble. That type of alcohol induced tragedy occurs with all too much frequency...we all know at least one story where someone's died. I am in full agreement that we all should be on gaurd against it, wether it's a local kid or a fully grown hairy hiker with a reputation for boozin, we carry them home, or the hospital or whatever...as you did, commendably... but to blame a group of people in the dark (with whom you were angry about being noisy) who may or may not have even been the same people who were there in the morning as if they poured liquor down the kids throat and tossed him in a ditch to die doesn't seem right. Mabye a little personal responsibilty goes to the kid..? who drank the liquor, very likely surreptitiously and without asking, if my personal experience as a 15 year old is anything to go by. I don't think my freind's dad who put the vodka in the garage freezer was responsible for my brother's hospital visit for alcohol poisoning and hypothermia, for instance. A 15 year old looking for booze is like a frikkin ninja when he has to be. Mabye if someone had noticed him stealing their booze they might have told the police....or sent him packing...or been "cool" because they were intoxicated as well and had no expectation of a 15 year old footpad sneaking their liquor when they were busy hootin and hollering (and it was very dark)...
I'm not sayin, I'm just sayin...I know we had loud out of tune instruments and played bluegrass music around our campfire till like 5 am...And if you'd have yelled at us to shut up I'd have said "No, why don't you go somewhere where there isn't a party going on to sleep!" Sorry to ramble but I know one of the dudes in that picture and he's cool in my book...and my books are straight.

charge before use
06-12-2006, 13:16
... I know one of the dudes in that picture and he's cool in my book...and my books are straight.

He's "cool", despite the obnoxious way he and his buddies behaved all weekend, and the fact that he left his campsite trashed for others to clean up?

attroll
06-12-2006, 13:19
People are under the assumption that the Riff Raff group were the ones that were supplying the booze to the kid. I am not sticking up for the Riff Raff group. But from what I saw was that many people went to the Riff Raff area with drinks already in there hands and some of those people were all pretty well lit up when they got there. I did not see anyone at the Riff Raff area handing out booze to anyone. Just because this kid was at the Riff Raff area does not mean he was supplied with booze from them. I was at the Riff Raff area for some time Saturday night and I was not offered any booze. I had my own drink in hand when I arrived. Like I said I am not sticking up for the Riff Raff area. It seems they did wrong by leaving there area a mess when they left and that was wrong and I agree with that. But that does not mean that they were wrong in being loud at night. Granted they should have had some respect but on the other hand the cops were there and did nothing about it. So the blame should not be placed on them alone. I saw no rules posted about quite hours and if there were I missed them. These are kids that know no better. If the cops did not approach then and enforce the rules of quite hours (if there were any posted) then who are we suppose to blame.

I am just making a statement.

bfitz
06-12-2006, 13:43
He's "cool", despite the obnoxious way he and his buddies behaved all weekend, and the fact that he left his campsite trashed for others to clean up?
I doubt the person I know did any of the things you describe (although I wasn't there...). I think he just happened to be in the group, or in the picture, anyway. My point is you don't know who did what anymore than I do. Your accusations are pretty much blanket accusations against a vague group of people, probably none of which were in the picture, fueled by the fact that you chose to try to sleep in the midst of a party. Glad you did though, that kid needed help. In fact, if they hadn't have been loud you might have gone to sleep and missed the kid...god works in mysterious ways. If your post was more along the lines of preaching group responsibilty and looking out for people in trouble who might need help instead of bitchen about who was noisiest in the middle of a noisy party I'd be behind you all the way. As it is, you sound like the neighborhood wet-blanket.

attroll
06-12-2006, 13:48
If we want to keep this topic going lets please keep it social able and not start slamming each other please.

bfitz
06-12-2006, 13:54
Sorry...didn't mean to slam...sometimes tone of voice is left out of printed comments if ya know what I mean. As I said...accusing people without cause and talk of banning folks from trail daze seems a bit unsociable, too. I stand by what I say, but I mean it respectfully. Feel free to delete the wet-blanket comment....:o

Alligator
06-12-2006, 14:16
Since this site receives no tax dollars, users have banded together to show their support. A $10 donation would allow you to remove the "wet blanket" reference:p :sun .

bfitz
06-12-2006, 14:54
I didn't ask to have it removed...I just don't mind if it is....;)

Local
06-12-2006, 18:50
I doubt these "Riff Raff" douche bags will be back next year. If they are, I'll personally pay them a visit.:cool:
Well, Wolf was regular Corps, I was a USMC reservist (six years, then went to Viet-Nam as a civilian, go figure) so I will back up Wolf and the Dinosaurs. The Dinos are more my speed these days, to be honest.

I've taken the Riff Raff photos offline, since it could have been the wrong people in the photo. There is no danger of Trail Days not being held due to the actions of some ..... I look for a polite word here.... irresponsible local kids or adults. The attitude would probably be "they got what they deserved."

warren doyle
06-12-2006, 21:38
Eventually the 'hiker party' atmosphere at Trail Days will implode with more disruptions, and possibly human tragedy similar to Duncannon last summer.
Already there is a certain percentage of hikers that avoid Trail Days because of this. It is unfortunate that certain groups of hikers feel the need to rely on alcohol to fully experience Trail Days.

bfitz
06-12-2006, 22:38
Trail days was great, a complete success...It was even better this year than last year.

Local
06-12-2006, 23:18
Eventually the 'hiker party' atmosphere at Trail Days will implode with more disruptions, and possibly human tragedy similar to Duncannon last summer.
Already there is a certain percentage of hikers that avoid Trail Days because of this. It is unfortunate that certain groups of hikers feel the need to rely on alcohol to fully experience Trail Days.

What would you change?

Pennsylvania Rose
06-13-2006, 09:05
I'm not sayin, I'm just sayin...I know we had loud out of tune instruments and played bluegrass music around our campfire till like 5 am...And if you'd have yelled at us to shut up I'd have said "No, why don't you go somewhere where there isn't a party going on to sleep!"

I like to party, too, but not in a public camping area...where people should be able to sleep...this is why I don't go to Trail Days. Yes, I'm being a wet blanket, but 15 years and 5 kids have an impact on your priorities. I hope the poor kid is OK. If my 15 yr old got ahold of that much alcohol, I don't know who his dad and I would kill first - him or the suppliers.

chomp
06-13-2006, 10:09
Eventually the 'hiker party' atmosphere at Trail Days will implode with more disruptions, and possibly human tragedy similar to Duncannon last summer.
Already there is a certain percentage of hikers that avoid Trail Days because of this. It is unfortunate that certain groups of hikers feel the need to rely on alcohol to fully experience Trail Days.

What would truely be a tragedy is if Warren was allowed to remake the ENTIRE Appalachian Trail and various trail gatherings in his image. In this regard, he is no better the George Bush; rambling on about freedom but quietly trying to make people conform to what they believe.

And don't think that Warren won't lie to push his agenda. Just ask the ALDHA board. Drinking is not the big, bad evil - extremism is. Hiking the AT is great as long as you do it your way, right Warren? Going to Trail Days is great as long as you enjoy it your way, right Warren? Dancing and partying are great as long as you contra-dance sober, right Warren?

For a liberal, you are sounding more and more like a conservative.

bfitz
06-13-2006, 11:56
I like to party, too, but not in a public camping area...where people should be able to sleep...this is why I don't go to Trail Days. Yes, I'm being a wet blanket, but 15 years and 5 kids have an impact on your priorities. I hope the poor kid is OK. If my 15 yr old got ahold of that much alcohol, I don't know who his dad and I would kill first - him or the suppliers.
There are plenty of quiet places to sleep during trail days. Two different families, one with a five month old infant, the other with a two year old, both close friends, chose to camp at a pay campground near town, but away from the "party" campground. They had a wonderful trail days and weren't bothered by the late night antics of rowdy hikers. In fact, I believe that is the reason the campground is where it is, instead of in the center of town, where people can also camp at The Place, for instance, or I believe there are even Bed and Breakfast type places as well as more than one pay campground with quiet hours and such near town. This is really a non-issue. If you want to party and stay up late, camp in the vicinity where others are doing so, if you don't, find somewhere else. There are plenty of options available. I'll be where I always am, and I'll be pickin' and partying till the small hours next year...you're all invited! Dry blankets only...it's Dryland after all...:welcome

bfitz
06-13-2006, 12:01
BTW- I wouldn't allow a 15 year old enough rope to go out to a high-school party without a certain amount of supervision...much less an all night adult-style hiker party! Who was this kid anyway? Like I said, it's not likely anyone gave him any kind of permission to do what he did.

bfitz
06-13-2006, 12:14
And Chomp is 100% right*, although I prefer to just ignore that guy...he's just being an oppurtunist here because he saw some sentiment he might be able to make use of for his own gain.

*Although comparing him to my hero George Bush is off base...have to discuss that later...

Local
06-13-2006, 13:33
There are plenty of quiet places to sleep during trail days...:welcome

Bfitz, you are exactly right, and next year we hope to provide more options. There are 40 bed and breafasts plus cottages in the immediate vicinity, plus Abingdon has dozens more. There are hundreds of campsites in the nearby national forest. No one will be forced to stay in the "official" campground, although we will expand it and make more sites available by the creek for those who want more isolation. We will also zap the poison ivy as much as possible.

Warren, I asked what changes you would make in Trail Days, and am interested in what you have to say. Many other hikers have made suggestions and I have posted them here -

http://www.traildays.info/nextyear.html - and we (the committee responsible for Trail Days) have already reviewed them and will try to make the suggested changes. I hope you have something constructive to suggest, rather than just "everything is going to hell." Excuse the paraphrase, but that's how I read your comments. Please let us know what you suggest to improve Trail Days.

local

http://www.damascus.org/
http://www.traildays.info/
http://www.vacreepertrail.us/

attroll
06-13-2006, 13:37
I like to party, too, but not in a public camping area...where people should be able to sleep...this is why I don't go to Trail Days. Yes, I'm being a wet blanket, but 15 years and 5 kids have an impact on your priorities. I hope the poor kid is OK. If my 15 yr old got ahold of that much alcohol, I don't know who his dad and I would kill first - him or the suppliers.
I agree with you on this. That is why I have not stayed at the campground the last two years. I have another place that is within walking distance. I did not stay at the campground on my first Trail Days because I had read and did my research on the campground idea ahead of time and knew what to expect.

D'Artagnan
06-13-2006, 13:44
I agree with you on this. That is why I have not stayed at the campground the last two years. I have another place that is within walking distance. I did not stay at the campground on my first Trail Days because I had read and did my research on the campground idea ahead of time and knew what to expect.

Sound advice and yet another reason why Whiteblaze is so great. I, too, had read a little before my first TD (this year). That's why I pitched my Tarptent at The Place and walked to and from the "official" campground/party. I enjoyed the party, but I also enjoyed a good night's rest (except for the lightning and downpours of course!)

Local
06-13-2006, 13:44
Attroll, I think it was Krewzer who suggested a quiet area in the campground. This might be possible if we clear a path to an area up the creek and clean out some poison ivy and stuff. There's also topsoil there for tent stakes, plus a series of small rapids and some islands. This area would be several hundred yards from the fire circle and the party areas. The place is big enough for this, and we could let people know this option is available.

bfitz
06-13-2006, 13:55
Actually...more signs and stuff could be helpful in general...like "no tents in the parking area" or "night-time quiet zone", "$$.00 Fine if no parking permit!" etc. Mabye made out of rain-resistant materials and big enough to read/notice. Then when people whine and complain you can just point to the huge sign and shrug sympathetically...

attroll
06-13-2006, 13:56
Attroll, I think it was Krewzer who suggested a quiet area in the campground. This might be possible if we clear a path to an area up the creek and clean out some poison ivy and stuff. There's also topsoil there for tent stakes, plus a series of small rapids and some islands. This area would be several hundred yards from the fire circle and the party areas. The place is big enough for this, and we could let people know this option is available.
That sounds nice when talking about it but making it happen and enforcing it is a different story. We'll see how well it works next year. I know the area to the left and behind Billville seemed like a quite location from what I observed this year.

warren doyle
06-13-2006, 16:40
What would you change?

First of all, I want to commend you for asking for and posting hiker suggestions on how to improve Trail Days. To the folks on the TD planning committee (past; present; future), thank you and keep up the good work!
I have had the opportunity to attend and participate in every TD except the first year.

Basically, I would not like to see TD go too astray from its original intentions (i.e., Charles Trivett, Paschal Grindstaff, Dan Bruce, etc.)
Unfortunately, the perception that some hikers have for TD is that it is one big party and so they avoid it. These are the hikers that probably would benefit the most, and attend, the many substantive programs that Eleanor has organized the past several years.

It is up to you how you want your celebration to be perceived. If you are content with what it has evolved into, than no changes are needed. However, the direction that it has been going in runs a greater risk of something tragic happening and you have to think of who would be liable.

Who is liable for injury incurred from excessive drinking and/or underage drinking in your town sponsiored campground?
Who would be liable if the waterfights during the parade injure a innocent bystander, whether it be a small child or an elderly citizen?
These are realistic questions.
I feel that TD under its present form is a liability time bomb waiting to explode.

You asked what I would change:

1) I would make it a non-alcohol, drug-free event in public places including the campground. There are now other informal groups that can sponsor their own 'hiker parties' somewhere and sometime else. Let them assume the liability if they feel that it is so important to imbibe alcohol and drugs to heighten their hiker fellowship.

2) If you don't do the above, at least have campground occupants sign a liability waiver with the town to avoid possible legal actions.

3) Firmly discourage the use of water weapons and projectiles during the parade. The parade has become a shell of what it use to be.

4) Remove all commercial, non-local, for-profit, non-food vendors from the public park and let them pay for space in the Food City parking lot.<!-- / message --><!-- sig -->

5) Imitate Whitetop Festival's policy towards corporate sponsorship and have little if any. You have enough good local/regional businesses that can sponsor.

I think the goal is to have a friendly, safe, small-town festival that celebrates the role that trails have, are, and will play in Damascus.
Excesssive 'partying' and 'rowdy' parade behavior do not fit in with that goal and I'm sure the driving forces behind the original Trail Days would agree with my assessment.

Local
06-13-2006, 20:51
Warren, thanks for your thoughtful suggestions. I've put these on the list of recommendations and when the "official" committee gets appointed in July, we will consider them. The list is here: http://www.traildays.info/nextyear.html

We don't know what the politics will be concerning who will be responsible for Trail Days next year. And I don't pretend to represent the new people who will be doing this. However, my personal opinions on your points follow:

1. (... non-alcohol, drug-free event in public places including the campground..) Probably not going to happen. The feeling I get is that the preference is for all party folks to be in one fairly safe area, rather than scattered out through the town.

2. (... liability waiver...) Absolutely. Something, not sure what, needs to be done. I know this will be discussed intensely.

3. (... water weapons and projectiles...) Not sure what this would include. Water guns and balloons? The primary danger so far has been to antique glass windows in some of the homes. Home-owners are taking steps to prevent damage. Hikers should be made aware of the possibility of breaking an irreplaceable window. The parade legally probably falls into the "known hazard" category.

4. (Remove all commercial, non-local, for-profit, non-food vendors from the public park...) Probably not going to happen. This is a very low-budget operation and fees received from vendors pay for the extra police, porta-johns, water, electricity, etc.

5. (... little if any corporate sponsorship...) I think this is the way it is now. There are no major cash inflows from benefactors. Backpacker does the shirts and money is made by selling them. I don't have details on the other donations but will get them.

Your remark, "The parade has become a shell of what it use to be," may be true or not true. Photos indicate more people but fewer fire trucks.

Your primary point, that Trail Days should not just become a huge frat party, is well-taken and is of concern to many. It is, however, a celebration of the Appalachian Trail (not all of the trails, but the AT, another issue being discussed) and people will celebrate. Based on police recommendations it would be best to keep local folks away, since that is where about 80 percent of the problems originate. But however that is managed, we want to strengthen the presentations that are made, bring in new and younger presenters (suggested strongly by the ATC), have better-managed presentations in terms of settings and equipment, and provide more trail-focused discussions and activities.

We share your goal of a "friendly, safe, small-town festival" and want to keep it that way. There will be celebrations. There will be rowdy parade behavior. There will be local (word deleted) who will make fools of themselves, and a few hikers will make fools of themselves. But hikers are usually a self-regulating community and that is one of the strengths of this event. Our task is to find a place for those who want to find solitude, for those who want to celebrate, for those who want to learn something new about hiking, and those who just want to hang out and talk to old and new friends. With the increased involvement of the hiking family we hope to make this happen.

Local
06-13-2006, 20:53
.. I know the area to the left and behind Billville seemed like a quite location from what I observed this year.
attroll, the words "Billville" and "quiet location" do not seem to belong together. :)

bfitz
06-13-2006, 21:50
The parade is awesome! The interaction it provides between the hikers and townsfolk is great...doing battle with the local kids is the high point of the weekend...especially when heavy rains hit and everyone has to make special effort to make it a good time (like 2005 TD)....The manufactured "fear" that a supersoaker or water-balloon is going to seriously injure someone is pretty ludicrous, IMO. You could reccomend umbrellas for the especially frail...And if anyone makes a particular arse of themselves...arrest em! Same goes for the campground...problems are minimal and easily solved by a few signs. The police at trail days this year were on point without being jerks or getting into a oppositional situation with the partiers, utterly cool and diplomatic and able to handle any and all problems. Other festivals should be so lucky....

Nean
06-14-2006, 00:59
I had a great Trail Days, so many old friends, and a few I haven't seen in years. Saw some new friends, and met some nice folks.

A couple of the many highlights: H and Haley were on there honeymoon.:banana Shipping signs with Paw Paw.:eek: And topped it off with Moonshine and Greenmans' wedding.:clap

I'll do that again anytime!:D

attroll
06-14-2006, 01:02
attroll, the words "Billville" and "quiet location" do not seem to belong together. :)
LOL. True. I did not say Billville was quite. I said the area left up and beyound Billville was quite. I will say this though. Billville was kept under control. There is never any underage drinking going on there and there are enough resposible Billvillers to keep everything under contriol.

TOW
06-14-2006, 10:30
attroll, the words "Billville" and "quiet location" do not seem to belong together. :)local, i got your back on that one.............

TOW
06-14-2006, 10:32
I had a great Trail Days, so many old friends, and a few I haven't seen in years. Saw some new friends, and met some nice folks.

A couple of the many highlights: H and Haley were on there honeymoon.:banana Shipping signs with Paw Paw.:eek: And topped it off with Moonshine and Greenmans' wedding.:clap

I'll do that again anytime!:Dwas paw paw there?

TOW
06-14-2006, 10:34
LOL. True. I did not say Billville was quite. I said the area left up and beyound Billville was quite. I will say this though. Billville was kept under control. There is never any underage drinking going on there and there are enough resposible Billvillers to keep everything under contriol.yeah, and when the hiker parade was happening bag-o-tricks watched all of our tents and prayed that someone would just try and steal something so that he could have some fun...............

Lone Wolf
06-14-2006, 10:48
was paw paw there?
Here was around all weekend. Just not out at the campground. He was visiting between the 2 hobo camps.

mingo
06-14-2006, 12:27
if you give booze to a 15-year-old kid and he dies, that's manslaughter

bfitz
06-14-2006, 14:47
if you give booze to a 15-year-old kid and he dies, that's manslaughter
What if he steals it?

The Weasel
06-21-2007, 16:20
Bfitz, you are exactly right, and next year we hope to provide more options. There are 40 bed and breafasts plus cottages in the immediate vicinity, plus Abingdon has dozens more. There are hundreds of campsites in the nearby national forest. No one will be forced to stay in the "official" campground, although we will expand it and make more sites available by the creek for those who want more isolation. We will also zap the poison ivy as much as possible.

Warren, I asked what changes you would make in Trail Days, and am interested in what you have to say. Many other hikers have made suggestions and I have posted them here -

http://www.traildays.info/nextyear.html - and we (the committee responsible for Trail Days) have already reviewed them and will try to make the suggested changes. I hope you have something constructive to suggest, rather than just "everything is going to hell." Excuse the paraphrase, but that's how I read your comments. Please let us know what you suggest to improve Trail Days.

local

http://www.damascus.org/
http://www.traildays.info/
http://www.vacreepertrail.us/

I couldn't find the link to the suggestions, and I was not at this year's TD, so I can't really comment on specifics of what occurred.

But based on what I've read here (and a few places elsewhere), I'd suspect that some of the following can be expected as at least serious suggestions, if not actuality:

- Strongly enforced prohibitions against possession/use of alcohol on public property, including camping areas.
- Curfew/noise enforcement after about 9 or 10 PM.
- Enhanced enforcement of public intoxication laws, including arrest/detention
- Campsite registration and assigned sites for litter/clean up

As for the youth's intoxication, there are serious penalties for furnishing, which can include "allowing" (i.e. a "wink wink" policy ) access to alcohol. Especially when someone goes comatose, those penalties can go beyond that to felony levels.

TD is pretty special. I hope it's protected.

The Weasel

Lone Wolf
06-21-2007, 16:44
TD is pretty special.

it USED to be. now it's just a big commercial, drunken reunion with a few slide shows and book signings thrown in. RIP Trail Days