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Winter Star Party 2022 (Key West)

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#26 John Fitzgerald

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 08:17 AM

Looks like they are pricing themselves out of business.   Most retired people who attend are likely on fixed incomes.



#27 GoFish

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 10:21 AM

I trust that much of the $300 fee I paid to tent camp for the week at Wesumkee will be put to good use for rebuilding and improving the facilities at the camp. So I’m ok with the cost.
 

I’ll also note that DW and I will likely have to spend that much for each night we stay in the Keys on the rest of our trip. Snowbirding ain’t for sissies. 


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#28 AstroBruce

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 11:49 AM

Why do people insist on comparing the registration fees to staying in a hotel? Lets compare apples to apples. A Florida state park camping fee is $36.00 per night with water and electric. Six nights is $216.00. Includes up to 6 persons.

 

Bruce


Edited by AstroBruce, 14 October 2021 - 11:56 AM.


#29 reddog1972

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 01:09 PM

Why do people insist on comparing the registration fees to staying in a hotel? Lets compare apples to apples. A Florida state park camping fee is $36.00 per night with water and electric. Six nights is $216.00. Includes up to 6 persons.

 

Bruce

Why are you comparing the cost of camping at a state park with that of attending a star party event?  For a hobby where people spend thousands and tens of thousands of dollars on telescopes, cameras, mounts, cars, RVs, eye pieces etc... I always find it curious when people chafe at the cost of attending an event that obviously has some thought behind what they're charging for attendance.


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#30 JimMo

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 01:30 PM

I can't always get away in February and have considered Long Key State Park as an alternative site in the Keys. My luck I'd have a guy next to me who insists on using his overly bright Coleman lantern and have to deal with campfire smoke. I still say WSP is a bargain, folks are required to use only red light, and I can leave my scope set up all day and know it's safe.

 

Chiefland AV is a very good alternative that I've taken advantage of, but being so far north you can have quite different weather than the Keys. For me, coming from Michigan, it's a lot less of a drive so there is that, too. Door to door the WSP is exactly 1500 miles for me. Chiefland is 1,051 miles, about a third less. Two day drive to the Keys, two nights in a hotel or my teardrop, and I'm dead tired. One long day to south Georgia, get some sleep, and I'm in Chiefland the next day in the early afternoon with enough energy so I can observe that night if possible. 



#31 AstroBruce

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 01:48 PM

Why are you comparing the cost of camping at a state park with that of attending a star party event?  For a hobby where people spend thousands and tens of thousands of dollars on telescopes, cameras, mounts, cars, RVs, eye pieces etc... I always find it curious when people chafe at the cost of attending an event that obviously has some thought behind what they're charging for attendance.

You missed the point. You can't compare it to anything else, or staying anywhere else (hotel, state park, or Mom and Dad's place on Big Pine). I was using an extreme example.

 

So you justify the cost based on how much money you spend on the hobby? THAT, I find curious.

 

Bruce



#32 DeanS

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 02:16 PM

It's worth what the market will bear. 

 

And as always; location, location, and location play a big part, but only so far.

 

I will give it time to see if it can get back to its old self, if it ever can in todays world.


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#33 reddog1972

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 02:33 PM

You missed the point. You can't compare it to anything else, or staying anywhere else (hotel, state park, or Mom and Dad's place on Big Pine). I was using an extreme example.

 

So you justify the cost based on how much money you spend on the hobby? THAT, I find curious.

 

Bruce

Now it's your turn to miss the point.  I don't justify the cost based on what I spend on the hobby, but others are unable to justify the cost in spite of what they've spent on the hobby.  

Example -  you've spent $2 million to live in a mansion on 20 acres, yet you complain to the guy asking to mow your lawn for $25 a week because you don't understand or appreciate his cost structure and think it's too much money?  

 

This is a unique location on the beach in the Florida Keys with warm weather in the winter time and views of the Southern hemisphere skies.  If this is something you're able to achieve elsewhere... god bless, I wish I had the ability to tick off those boxes by not attending this star party.  For most I'd assume these attributes, along with the comradery that comes with attending said star party, is a unique experience that's worth the price of admission.  Hopefully some of this money will go a long way towards helping the Girl Scout camp get repaired.  If not I'm sure the funds will be going to good use and not lining anyone's pockets.


Edited by reddog1972, 14 October 2021 - 02:40 PM.

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#34 nitegeezer

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 02:37 PM

So you justify the cost based on how much money you spend on the hobby? THAT, I find curious.


Many buy toys when they are young and have disposable income, and have more time to enjoy those toys when they are retired and on a fixed income. Yes, cost matters!!
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#35 kenkolen

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 04:02 PM

Compared to the price of a hotel room for a week in the Keys I guess you could call the WSP prices a bargain. Believe me, after the last two I attended the girl scout camp needs a lot of work which costs money, not so much at Camp Sawyer. I'm glad my little teardrop trailer gets a pass as it's actually smaller than most of the tents folks use. Anyways, $300 for a week camping on the ocean with a awesome southern view is really a great deal. I'm looking forward to 2023. 

Correct, you wouldn't get a small hotel room for one night for the cost of a week at the WSP. Not to mention so many cool people to hang out with.



#36 kenkolen

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 04:09 PM

Looks like they are pricing themselves out of business.   Most retired people who attend are likely on fixed incomes.

Well it is unfortunate that costs for everything are skyrocketing. One of the biggest expenses is security, then the porta potties. There will be many speakers this year.



#37 kenkolen

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 04:15 PM

I can't always get away in February and have considered Long Key State Park as an alternative site in the Keys. My luck I'd have a guy next to me who insists on using his overly bright Coleman lantern and have to deal with campfire smoke. I still say WSP is a bargain, folks are required to use only red light, and I can leave my scope set up all day and know it's safe.

 

Chiefland AV is a very good alternative that I've taken advantage of, but being so far north you can have quite different weather than the Keys. For me, coming from Michigan, it's a lot less of a drive so there is that, too. Door to door the WSP is exactly 1500 miles for me. Chiefland is 1,051 miles, about a third less. Two day drive to the Keys, two nights in a hotel or my teardrop, and I'm dead tired. One long day to south Georgia, get some sleep, and I'm in Chiefland the next day in the early afternoon with enough energy so I can observe that night if possible. 

So you know Long Key has been closed since the hurricane Irma in 2017. I drove by there a couple of weeks ago and it looks like a standstill. Camping at Bahia Honda is next to impossible so is Curry Hammocks.

The last time we did our WSP at Chiefland in Feb 2018, we were fogged in every night. I presume it has something to do with the time of the year.

Hope to see you at Scout Key.



#38 Napp

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 04:31 PM

This topic started with a question about who is going and a concern about registration opening.  Lets’s get back on topic.  


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#39 Chuck Jennings

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 04:43 PM

I think the rub is around the cost per person. I think that $300 for a “campsite” is very reasonable. The issue is when you have multiple people from the same family attending and the price gets incrementally higher. I’m registered with both my wife and my 17yo son. That’s pretty expensive for tent camping and the $900 could likely get me a few nights in a local hotel. That said, I’m very much looking forward to the event, however I can see how the fee structure can easily price people out.
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#40 steveastrouk

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Posted 15 October 2021 - 11:09 AM

The issue is when you have multiple people from the same family attending and the price gets incrementally higher. I’m registered with both my wife and my 17yo son. `

That was my beef too. This is my hobby, my family have a certain amount of interest in it, but they are not active participants. For my wife and me now, $600 for the whole event is OK.  $900 though, we stopped going.


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#41 bigbangbaby

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Posted Yesterday, 08:22 PM

On the recommendation from some new friends I met at Cherry Springs at the Star Party, I signed up for the WSP. Now I have a firm deadline to finish my Newtonian. Can't wait!


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