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MN State Park Earthcaching and Virtualcaching Guidelines
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pear Head wrote:

miles58 wrote:
This regulation is dead wrong. We need to stand up and say it's dead wrong. We *can* be polite about it. We can help draft responsible regulation based on broad experience and understanding of what is and is not involved in caching.


THAT's what I'm saying we need to do. We can't just ignore the regulation because we think it's crap and not enforcable. We need to help the DNR to fix it, and do it politely.


s4xton wrote:

My call to everyone is to turn the conversation to how we can help the DNR improve their policy. Let's concentrate on that instead of mulling over the existing policy, which most everyone seems to have problems with.


These folks are all dead-on.

I recommend that we take time to calmly discuss this here and make our feelings known. Further, I suggest that the current MnGCA board leave any decision/communication with the DNR on this matter to the new board that will be elected in the coming months. I am not advocating this to silence the current board, but for timing reasons only. I'd like to see all opinions aired here before moving forward.

I see this issue as the number one agenda item for the 2006 MnGCA board (but of course that is up to them).

So - to s4xton's point - what do we want to change this to? What do we feel are reasonable regualtions/restrictions on our sport that we can agree to suggest to the MN DNR?

I'll chime in with my answers to this after work.
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sui generis
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Apr 2004

Posts: 608

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

True, cooperation and a willingness to educate the DNR may be the best bet....after all, they have been SO receptive to our input and willingness to help them figure this out in the past. When people refuse to listen, sometimes you must do things that REQUIRE them to listen. Whether it be writing letters, bringing legal action, or going to the media for support. There are plenty of legal ways to make waves that they can not ignore. I've heard a few people make the plea for loving cooperation, so lets hear what specifically that entails that hasn't been tried unsuccessfully before.
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s4xton
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 23 Mar 2003

Posts: 1070

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 1:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sui generis wrote:
True, cooperation and a willingness to educate the DNR may be the best bet....after all, they have been SO receptive to our input and willingness to help them figure this out in the past. When people refuse to listen, sometimes you must do things that REQUIRE them to listen. Whether it be writing letters, bringing legal action, or going to the media for support. There are plenty of legal ways to make waves that they can not ignore. I've heard a few people make the plea for loving cooperation, so lets hear what specifically that entails that hasn't been tried unsuccessfully before.


The MnGCA has never made a serious concentrated effort to work with the DNR. Their "receptiveness" has only been a result of what towlebooth relayed and a couple emails and voicemails we sent to one or two persons there over the last year.

We cannot complain that they're not listening when we're only whispering.

That's why if everyone is motivated to help the DNR create a more reasonable, legal and intelligent policy, then we should talk about it, figure something out and put it through a megaphone.

-Aaron


Last edited by s4xton on Wed Aug 10, 2005 1:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Arcticabn
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 30 Nov 2003

Posts: 1846

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not going to really express my opinion pro or con to the policy. I will however, comply with their policy for now.

Thought. Maybe if we can't appoach this from the top, we might approach it from the bottom or within as it might be. Maybe we should start approaching some of the local park rangers and discussing the issues of geocaching within their specific park. We acknowledge the current policy and are not looking to them to recommend changes. But to better inform us from their perspective as to their concerns and issues. Maybe in the process we can start the educational process with them. Who know what it might grow into or not.
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pto
Geocacher


Joined: 18 Mar 2004

Posts: 136

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

s4xton wrote: The MnGCA has never made a serious concentrated effort to work with the DNR. Their "receptiveness" has only been a result of what towlebooth relayed and a couple emails and voicemails we sent to one or two persons there over the last year.

We cannot complain that they're not listening when we're only whispering.


I think the Mngca should refocus on thier original purpose, as stated in the bylaws.

improve the credibility of our sport, increasing public awarenessof our activities, sponsor meeting for members & the public, primarily about responsible land use & geocaching.
Work with Local county & state govt's to promote geocachingand to organize, promote and participate in programs to help in the maint. of parks and trail systems.


Doing nothing wasn't listed, yet thats about all thats been accomplsihed in the history of this organization. Why? What else was pressing that the board couldnt ge something moving?

I dont mean to be critical, but in the end- its going to take some serious efforts to work with the DNR. The Mngca board is the best body to do that. I dont feel like waiting another 1-3 years for something to happen - I already waited 2-3.

In the meantime, Im not heading to Any State parks.....
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pto wrote:

Doing nothing wasn't listed, yet thats about all thats been accomplsihed in the history of this organization. Why? What else was pressing that the board couldnt ge something moving?

I dont mean to be critical, but in the end- its going to take some serious efforts to work with the DNR. The Mngca board is the best body to do that. I dont feel like waiting another 1-3 years for something to happen - I already waited 2-3.


Sweet. I know who to nominate for the board next year now. Thanks pto, I look forward to your energetic service.
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pto
Geocacher


Joined: 18 Mar 2004

Posts: 136

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1 guy alone isn't going to change anything, which is why I never bothered to sign on. Ive watched from the wings, waiting to see what happens......
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pto wrote:
1 guy alone isn't going to change anything, which is why I never bothered to sign on. Ive watched from the wings, waiting to see what happens......


Then let's get back to positive comments regarding what we want to submit to the DNR rather than bemoaning what has or has not taken place in the past. Sound like a plan?
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pto
Geocacher


Joined: 18 Mar 2004

Posts: 136

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sure. Sorry to point that out.

Maybe we need to address the legal issues with the new policy. Freedom of speech, other issues miles58 & sui generis mention.

Does MnDnr realize they are treading a thin line?

A few calls from a good lawyer or 3 might get the ball rolling.
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s4xton
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 23 Mar 2003

Posts: 1070

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pto wrote:
A few calls from a good lawyer or 3 might get the ball rolling.


Please read a couple of my posts from above. We've discussed that and I do not support going down this path.

Regarding Board participation, some of us have been more involved than others. It's a volunteer organization and if you want people that do more, vote them in.

What is going to "get the ball rolling" is if people that are motivated to talk about this subject start talking about fixing the policy instead talking about the process.

Nobody on this thread has made any real suggestions as to what the DNR policy should be in the future. Let's talk about that. I've asked for participation to be directed this way 3 times now and Pear Head and Towlebooth (and maybe others) have suggested the same thing.

Need a starting point? Look at the Duluth Policy. While I have heard a lot of negative feedback about the Three Rivers policy, I have never heard anything negative about the Duluth Policy. It's quite a bit different. It works for Duluth. Could it work for the DNR? Why? Why not? What would need to change? Could it be a failure? Let's make the hypothetical situation that *we* set the policy. How would we do it? Would it work? Does it make sense for the DNR and the State? Other park visitors?

At this point, our members are either part of the problem, part of the solution, or not part of it. Make a decision as to what group you want to be with and let's turn this thread around and talk about how we can help the DNR figure this geocaching thing out.

-Aaron
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miles58
Geocacher


Joined: 07 Mar 2005

Posts: 196

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aaron,

I think if we wqant some decent regs out of MNDNR the first thing we should do is to draft a letter and ask each member to sign it and to get thier senator and representative to sign it demanding that MNDNR rescind this reg because it does harm to all parties.

That buys us an equal footing with any other park user immediately, and enough respect from MNDNR that we will have a say in a new reg.

Should MNDNR not choose to go along, then we simply introduce legislation and do it how we want it.

I have done this before. This will work. It is not rocket science and we don't need to kiss anyone's backside nor take a back seat to anyone either.
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s4xton
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 23 Mar 2003

Posts: 1070

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

miles58 wrote:
Aaron,

I think if we wqant some decent regs out of MNDNR the first thing we should do is to draft a letter and ask each member to sign it and to get thier senator and representative to sign it demanding that MNDNR rescind this reg because it does harm to all parties.

That buys us an equal footing with any other park user immediately, and enough respect from MNDNR that we will have a say in a new reg.

Should MNDNR not choose to go along, then we simply introduce legislation and do it how we want it.

I have done this before. This will work. It is not rocket science and we don't need to kiss anyone's backside nor take a back seat to anyone either.


I strongly disagree, again.

For the last time, I will not support any negative action against the Minnesota DNR. We don't need to buy respect. We don't need to prove a point. We don't need to kick them. They are trying.

Again, I am sure the DNR will talk to us if we have something insightful to say. There's no reason to attack them in a negative fashion.

For the last time I will ask this, and this time I'm directing it directly at you, miles58: Let's invest our time in helping them understand geocaching and help them work improvements and changes to the policy instead of punishing them for the current policy. Should we punish them for not understanding geocaching or should we be the ones to educate them?

Again, I am not disagreeing with your thoughts that the policy has potentially serious problems. I'm also not disagreeing that these potentially serious problems may amount to "discrimination" in some fashion. But you must understand that we are not in a position where they won't listen to us. I sincerely believe that they will talk to us if we have something insightful to say. I strongly believe that petitioning behind their back on the current policy won't help in a positive manner.

Let's look forward as to what we can do to help the DNR, our parks, and geocaching in our state.

s4xton wrote:
Nobody on this thread has made any real suggestions as to what the DNR policy should be in the future. Let's talk about that. I've asked for participation to be directed this way 3 [now 4] times now and Pear Head and Towlebooth (and maybe others) have suggested the same thing.

[---snip---]

At this point, our members are either part of the problem, part of the solution, or not part of it. Make a decision as to what group you want to be with and let's turn this thread around and talk about how we can help the DNR figure this geocaching thing out.


I've repeated myself too much. Let's move on.

-Aaron
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miles58
Geocacher


Joined: 07 Mar 2005

Posts: 196

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aaron,

Not to keep you at a disadvantage, my name is Dave.

I do not believe you understand the problem with the DNR and I do not believe you are recognizing chronic behavior that is part of MNDNR.

They are not innocent fools.

They did not make a mistake.

They are competent professionals trained to do precisely this kind of action.

This was done by commisioners reg to make it harder to deal with.

It is also part of their repertoire to negotiate and do nothing with a reg like this in place.

I have been there before.

I have done this before.

I have the T shirt.

I have the legislation on the books.

What this course of action has accomplished is to make us second class citizens to virtually all other users.
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Oneied Cooky
Geocacher


Joined: 06 Mar 2005

Posts: 453

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Duluth parks policy looks good and is a good place to start. Miles 58 if we go to war I want you on MY side!! Pull out the big gunns right away!! I don't think we want to go at this with ATTITUDE! We can save that for a plan B or C! BUT we have to let them know that this is not right! and I don't think waiting for the next board is the right answer. Why can't the board talk to them now and get things rolling when you pass the torch on they should be updated on where everybody stands and can deal with it from there! just because the people change the purpose of MNGCA should stay the same. I may be all wet but don't all MNGCA members have a say as to what they think? I know we vote in members but most of the people you vote for how well do you know them? How motivated are they? How much time have they got to put into this? There are alot of regestered MNGCA people out there but yet we only hear from a couple dozen. We can't make people do things in a volunteer group. And I am not saying the current board is doing nothing. You guys have helped the sport along alot in the last year Very Happy But there is still more to do and if sitting down and talking to DNR will help and let them know we are NOT out to change the parks we just want to use them like everyone else.
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s4xton
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 23 Mar 2003

Posts: 1070

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Miles58-

We disagree.

I appreciate your experience and insight into the Minnesota DNR, but the various tactics you suggested are not a path I can support.

If you want to petition and get this removed from the books your way, obviously it is your right to do so on your own.

I'm not discussing it further.

-Aaron
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