March 13th 2017

When I established the forums in 2005 it was to offer a more richer web experience and greater functionality than the platform where we started this social adventure in 2003, Yahoo Groups. The forums were once a busy hive of activity and provided locals and visitors with a wealth of information just like the Geocaching Ireland Discussion Group on Facebook today.

It was a time where we didn't have the many social media platforms we have today, and it was a different time in terms of mobility and technology. There was no instant access to information, no Google Maps and a very limited base map on your GPSr. Mobile connectivity for me was a 9600bps Infrared connection from a Nokia to a laptop and in later times to a PDA using WAP.

As we moved into the social media era so did our forums users. Geocaching Ireland moved there too, and we have a thriving community on the Geocaching Ireland Discussion Group on Facebook. As a result, forum activity isn't what it used to be and I have taken the decision to disable new registrations to the forums and to make the forums read only so any information there can still be accessed.

The discussion hasn't ended, it has just moved. Join us on the Facebook Geocaching Ireland Discussion Group .

Donnacha

2014 Ireland Mega

Talk about events

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by dino » Thu May 13, 2010 4:12 pm

donnacha wrote:I think if someone wanted to go ahead with this you would need some form of stats from GS. I doubt they would hand over that info, but you never know.
They won't :wink:
Some gal would giggle and I'd get red
And some guy'd laugh and I'd bust his head,
I tell ya, life ain't easy for a boy named "Sue."

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by parkmoy » Thu May 13, 2010 6:10 pm

They won't
What reason do they give for refusing what, after all, is a very general statistic?
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by dino » Thu May 13, 2010 6:42 pm

parkmoy wrote:
They won't
What reason do they give for refusing what, after all, is a very general statistic?
I don't know the reason, probably something to do with privacy issue and data collection but I do know they don't give out information in any shape or form apart from find counts and active caches.
Some gal would giggle and I'd get red
And some guy'd laugh and I'd bust his head,
I tell ya, life ain't easy for a boy named "Sue."

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by donnacha » Fri May 14, 2010 7:17 am

dino wrote:They won't :wink:
That's what I though alright.
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by parkmoy » Fri May 14, 2010 7:30 am

I don't know the reason, probably something to do with privacy issue and data collection but I do know they don't give out information in any shape or form apart from find counts and active caches.
Is it worth asking them the reason Niall? (When you're back in harness of course :) ) If they know the reason for asking maybe they would relent since events and the related publicity can only help to grow their business.

The total number of Irish members cannot really be a breach of privacy in any way shape or form, or indeed breach any data collection rules. An 'in excess of' figure surely isn't commercially sensitive information either?
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by kersti.com » Fri May 14, 2010 12:40 pm

It wouldn't for Ireland, but it would for smaller countries - and then what point do you stop? How many cachers are there in Dublin/Meath/Kerry??

Also, how do you count someone like myself who started in Australia, now in Ireland but who will be in SCotland at some point in the future?

That said, I'm all for more aggregate data.

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by faustus » Fri May 21, 2010 8:07 am

if there is a mega-event in ireland 2014 - i'll be there! 8)

greetz from austria,

faustus

next week there's a mega-event only a few kilometers from my town :wink: :
Pinzgau 2010

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by Dave-MP » Tue May 25, 2010 4:51 pm

As someone whose acted as Reviewer Liaison to the UK Mega's at Harogate/Weston/Perth/Swansea (2011). The average cost per committee is been around £6,000. Perth being the exception as they have major sponsorship from Perth 800 and Big Tree Country, their bill will be harder to estimate.

Harogate had 7 months in which to pull things together, on the Saturday night before the Mega on the Sunday. There was still a huge shortfall on funds coming in. They eventually had a excess of a few hundred pounds which went to charity.

Weston was close to a similar situation the days before the Mega took place. They made a excess of a few hundred pounds again which went to charity.

The interesting point is that there was a increase of numbers by around 100-150 at Weston over Harogate.

Harogate being close to the centre of the UK, Weston being down towards on corner. Despite Weston being approximately 3 hours drive from the SE of England [On the Friday before the Mega, I drove from Weston to Ascot, which is just outside London]. Many SE cachers declared it was to far to travel to attend :shock:

So I'm totally ashamed :oops: to say the chances of a Irish Mega pulling in large numbers of UK cachers would be slim :oops: . Personally and I know my spouse would support me in this, I would attend one, just out of support to the organisers. And would happily sit back at a Reviewer Q&A and heckle Niall :twisted: [got to return the favour :twisted: ]

From personal experience of working closely with the UK Mega Committee's, I'd say any serious decision to organise a Irish Mega. When the conditions become right to support one. Needs at least 2 or more years lead in time.

This comes from the following

Harogate had 7 months. Total manic time throughout.
Weston had 12 months. Slightly less manic, but still manic
Perth had 2 years. They had time to fund raise, gain major sponsorship. Then decide on a venue, knowing funding was in place. And still hav a more relaxed time over other plans.
Swansea's lead it time, 2 years. They've only recently booked and confirmed the dates and venue. But still have over 14 months to plan and fund raise.
The NW 2012 Committee [who are currently in contention with someone determined to organise a Mega in 2012 in the SE] started their planing fund raising, last October. They narrowed potential venues down to 2 possible ones.

What all these Committees have in common? Their all building on the hard work that the Harogate committee laid the foundations with. Each committee will list their event under the UK Mega Committee GC Account. Which has a history of Mega events behind it. So automatically gets Mega Status and publication, 12 months before hand. This came about due to Harogate, spending a lot of time convincing Groundspeak to award Mega Status before the event took place. Though they still had to attract 500 persons logged as Will Attend as part of that proof. As soon as the current Mega Event has passed, and the account passed over to next years committee, Groundspeak enables the Mega Status which enables publication by the Local Reviewer 12 Months beforehand.

I'd estimate that out of each committee, there will be at least 2, possibly more of those who started out on the committee. Resigning at some point in the run up to the event. This can be due to other commitments, unable/unwilling to take the stress involved. Or more sadly personality conflicts with other members on the committee.

Those who do see the project through to the end, will have put in hundreds of hours. Put up with a huge amount of stress, which doesn't end until the Event committee is wound down. And put themselves at huge financial risk [if the fund raising produces a shortfall the committee members become liable to make up that shortfall]

The upside for each committee, is knowing that all the blood,sweat and tears was totally worth it.

If anyone is seriously interested in Organising a Irish Mega in the future. I'd suggest that they contact the Perth or Swansea committees. And make arrangements to shadow one of them on the day of the Mega. That would give you a idea of the work involved, and a major insite into what you would be letting yourself in for in the future. I know Perth are activley looking for volunteers, to put in a hour or 2 on the day of the Mega, helping out.

The above is not a attempt to pour cold water on the idea. But more of a wish to give a foundation of what is actually involved in organising a Mega Event. Add in that the very first Irish Mega Committee, would also have the extremely hard task of convincing Groundspeak to award Mega Status before the event takes place. Personally I'd love to attend a Irish Mega, given the huge friendliness of the Irish Geocaching Community! It would be a fantastic event to attend.

One idea for the future, is to try get local/national tourist boards interested in promoting Geocaching in their areas. This would have multiple benefits, by bringing international visitors and so increase tourist spending. And would lay foundations for getting grants, for Mega Events in Ireland.

The National Trust in England and Wales, have already recognised the benefits of setting their own Geocaches on their properties. Several Tourist Boards at a local/county level including National Park Authorities in the UK are actively getting involved in Geocaching as a way to promote their areas. The same is true in the US.

I hope you find all of the above helpful. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask them. Either on here, or direct. I can be contacted through my profile on here/GC. Or alternately Niall can give you my contact details.

Deci

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by spy caleb » Tue May 25, 2010 8:37 pm

Thanks for speaking some good common sense!!!
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by johnrm » Tue May 25, 2010 9:19 pm

Therers a lot of food for thought there Dave-MP/Deci.
Thanks!

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by Donmoore » Tue May 25, 2010 9:45 pm

there ya go folks! get her planned! ha!

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by batsgonemad » Fri Jun 25, 2010 8:55 pm

Having just come across this thread, i must say that my first impression is that of alot on negativity..... Whos to say people wont come out for our Mega event, its not your run of the mill Milkshake event(no ofence intended Kevin) This is a huge event, one which i think can be pulled off, people love coming to Ireland, Paddy is everybodys friend. I think its well within our grasp and i think we should grab the oppertunity and run with it, get organisations involved start talking to them getting them to know what its all about. Tourist board involved out door organisations etc, i firmly believe it can be done, and ill be the first to put my hand up and say im willing to get involved in it. Too much negativity means it will never get done, this is a beautiful country and we should bring it to the people out there. THEY WILL COME.

Are there any ideas as to where would be a good venue, in terms of arrivals from other countries, i know people might say Dublin but im sure there are better places.

There are amongst us, people with the skills to put a good commity together, who will get along and see it thorough.

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by THE_Chris » Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:37 pm

Perhaps a good way of working it out would be to find out how many people come to general Irish events, and how many go to general UK events. The numbers that come to each would be a way of estimating how many would be likely to come to an Irish mega.

I reckon the numbers would be too low to pull it off, even though it would be good.

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by kersti.com » Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:31 am

At the risk of getting my head bit off, to be perfectly honest your best location will be Dublin.

To those of us from the outside, Belfast is seen as a small local location like Cork and when you look at the maps Dublin has the best airline connections. Dublin also has great connections from a rail/road/boat perspective (great as in they exist, not looking at quality here) and plenty of options for different levels of hotels and excursions.

It's central enough to be inclusive for all people across the island as well - Cork is more than a day trip for anyone in the North - well, anyone half sane.

And while I do not want to discuss politics (TBH outsiders don't know nor do they want to get involved) it's also going to be referred to as an Ireland event and not swallowed up under a UK banner which will only cause confusion to visitors.

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by parkmoy » Thu Aug 12, 2010 12:22 pm

To those of us from the outside, Belfast is seen as a small local location like Cork and when you look at the maps Dublin has the best airline connections. Dublin also has great connections from a rail/road/boat perspective (great as in they exist, not looking at quality here) and plenty of options for different levels of hotels and excursions.
Kersti, I'm on record as stating that I don't think an Irish mega would work unless things change. However, and I'm not going to bite your head off :D , I think you will find that there are now more cachers in the North than the South and probably more caches. Belfast is served by 2 airports with Flybe, Easyjet, Aer Lingus and Ryanair providing cheap flights from England, Scotland and Wales as well as further abroad. Ferry services from England and Scotland are also available. Surprisingly we in the North also have hotels and lots of tourist destinations and excursions. :roll:

If there was to be a mega I think a very good case could be made for the Belfast area and that's an impartial viewpoint, not just because I live in the North :wink:
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by Spark_ie » Thu Aug 12, 2010 2:47 pm

Hey hey... We're forgetting the REAL Capital here boys and girls .. !!! Never mind your Belfasts and your Dublins.. ! :twisted: :twisted: 8)
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by TeamHousty » Thu Aug 12, 2010 3:45 pm

Spark_ie wrote:Hey hey... We're forgetting the REAL Capital here boys and girls .. !!! Never mind your Belfasts and your Dublins.. ! :twisted: :twisted: 8)
thats why it should be held in Donegal :duel

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by TeamHousty » Thu Aug 12, 2010 3:55 pm

parkmoy wrote:
To those of us from the outside, Belfast is seen as a small local location like Cork and when you look at the maps Dublin has the best airline connections. Dublin also has great connections from a rail/road/boat perspective (great as in they exist, not looking at quality here) and plenty of options for different levels of hotels and excursions.
Kersti, I'm on record as stating that I don't think an Irish mega would work unless things change. However, and I'm not going to bite your head off :D , I think you will find that there are now more cachers in the North than the South and probably more caches. Belfast is served by 2 airports with Flybe, Easyjet, Aer Lingus and Ryanair providing cheap flights from England, Scotland and Wales as well as further abroad. Ferry services from England and Scotland are also available. Surprisingly we in the North also have hotels and lots of tourist destinations and excursions. :roll:

If there was to be a mega I think a very good case could be made for the Belfast area and that's an impartial viewpoint, not just because I live in the North :wink:

here we go and it's not even confirmed if there is going to be a Mega in Ireland :roll:

IF (and by the sounds of it and pretty big IF :? ) it is going ahead then it should be held in Athlone and that way everyone has the same distance to travel, weather flying into Belfast, Dublin, Cork, Shannon, Knock or even Donegal :shock:

johnrm
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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by johnrm » Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:36 pm

I've no idea what goes on at these events, but if you hit the right people with the right sort of PR, you can probably do it.
Do they advertise these things on the radio in the UK like the horse show or the spring show? (or whatever stuff goes on in the RDS and similar)

Is it me or has there been a dramatic increase in outdoors stuff in this country and taking advantage of our natural resources?
Maybe its that my interests have changed, but notwithstanding bike-week, theres a LOT more bikes on the road, and more outdoors activities than before.

Its not like anyone here is trying to make a quick buck, as its a not-for profit thing, and purely in the interest of the game.

(Not volunteering for ANY position on the committee!)

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Re: 2014 Ireland Mega

Post by parkmoy » Thu Aug 12, 2010 8:46 pm

here we go and it's not even confirmed if there is going to be a Mega in Ireland
I think you misunderstand my post. I'm not suggesting a mega in Belfast or Dublin. Both are about the same distance from me so it wouldn't matter either way. I was just trying to correct a misapprehension that Belfast was in some way lacking in faciities :D

If I ever change my mind about the viability of a mega on this island I will of course be suggesting it is held in God's country - Fermanagh : =D> =D>
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