Minutes for OHA Steering Committee Meeting – 9/19/2017

Present: Bill Barrett, James Draper, Sheldon Perry, Dan Racowsky, and Stroker Rogovin.

1) Treasurer’s Report (Stroker for Moose) Dues and individual donations are slower than usual, but due to a generous gift from the family of “Pemi” Bob Prescott, donations overall are above target. Cabin income is slow, but not significantly below historical averages. Expenses are thankfully also slow, due to road work being deferred to 2018.

2) Cabin (Stroker) Open invitation still stands to young OH to add more of their own photos to the collection at the cabin. John Thompson and Eric Gotthold to provide assistance, as needed. Stroker to work with Mike Waddell to update cabin procedures, rules chore list, etc. for posting at Cabin, PNC desk, website, etc. Updated signage should be clear and concise, and help users understand expectations and enhance their visits.

3) EOS Report (Stroker for James Wrigley) Thanks to Beth Weick’s networking and willing Y-OH volunteers, the OHA was fully represented at all major hut gatherings this year, including Summer Gala (Phoebe Howe & Jeff Colt), EOS Party (Emily Griffin), Fall Gala (Nathaniel Blauss), and EOF Party (Lorne Currier & Morgan LaPointe). Old guard Mark Hitchcock and John Thompson attended EOSP. OH representation at these events is an important component of our efforts to “put a face” on the OHA so current croo have a sense of our history and purpose, and how it relates to them.

4) Website (Dan Racowsky) Web designer Dan Racowsky gave a brief tour of the new website, still under development, to get feedback on design, functionality, and overall architecture. Suggestions included making it as easy as possible for members to contribute photos and videos, and including Ari Ofsevit’s map showing location of OHA membership. Committee agreed to make OHA merch available to the general public (subject to review). Taylor Burt has agreed to step up as our new webmaster and will be working with Dan and OH Brian Post to migrate content from the old site to the new. Expected launch date is Fallfest/early November.

5) Fallfest, 11/4 (Stroker) Featured speaker is Bob Proudman & possibly others, on “The History of the AMC Trail Crew.” Fallfest will also feature another Y-OH listening session hosted by Co-Chair Beth Weick, a live music jam, the premier screening of the Mizpah 50th and Lakes 100th Hut Anniversary videos, a report on the past summer from huts management, a report on the same from current croo; and short schpiels on volunteer opportunities for OH in the huts.

6) Oktoberfest, 10/7 (Stroker for Richard Stetson and Bridget Qualey) Bridget and Richard are planning to organize yet another fall work party at the cabin to get the old place ready for winter.

7) Membership Development (Stroker for Elizabeth Seabury) After speaking with Jen Granducci, Chris Thayer, and others, we fielded a number of constructive tips on what might attract OH with young families to family-oriented events. Jen suggested organizing separate events for families with teens and families with kids 12-and-under. She agreed to organize a winter overnight to Zool or Cata for families with teens. Chris Thayer suggested scheduling a family event right before a reunion, possibly a Lonesome overnight before next Fallfest? On another note, AMC apparently no longer captures “brick and mortar” of new croo; James Wrigley to research further and see if he can continue to share this information for our Croo database.

8) Croo Photo Project (Stroker for Beth Eisenhower & Sally Dinsmore) Thanks to the persistence of Beth Eisenhower, Lonesome Lake got its first-ever croo photo display this spring, produced by Sally Dinsmore. We also receieved some most welcome donations towards this project. The Greenleaf croo photos also made it in this spring, having been delayed last season.

9) 2018 Nominations (Stroker) After consultation with existing Steering Committee members, nominations for 2018 officers are: President (Chair): Stroker Rogovin; Treasurer: John “Moose” Meserve; Secretary: Tom Kelleher; Resuscitator Editor and Co-Chair: Beth Weick; Assistant Editor: Will Murray; Members-at-Large: Nathaniel Blauss, Jeff Colt, Elizabeth Seabury, Jenna Whitson Koloski, Eric Gotthold, and Grace Pezella.

10) Resuscitator Update (Stroker for Beth) Deadline 10/1; publication 10/15. New issue to include Hut Ambassador testimonials; bio of Fallfest featured speaker Bob Proudman, and reprints of articles from the Trail Crew Association newsletter.

11) Next Steering Committee Meeting: Nov. 14, Boston. Location TBD. Stroker 11/6/17

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Whitey Sees the Presence

Since humans blundered upon the majesty of what were later named The White Mountains of New Hampshire, those same hills have exhibited a gift for terminating many of them!

To this date, 1998, well over one hundred of these unfortunates either fell or froze to death. Most achieved that dubious distinction via a miscalculation of one kind or another. Back in the 1850s bridle paths were constructed so that the effort of climbing could be inflicted upon horses and the humans could relax and enjoy the scenery as they climbed.

Among those whose lives ended on Mount Washington was a Lizzie Bourne who was climbing with her husband. The two were caught in a sudden snow storm very high on the mountain in 1855. In fact they were on the dome and only a quarter mile from shelter at the summit. Blinded by the precipitation, they apparently did not realize how close to safety they were. Her husband went on ahead for help but hypothermia prevailed and Lizzie froze to death. The spot has been marked ever since.

Today, weather technicians and observers living on the top of Mount Washington know all too well that there exists “a presence” living there with them. Indeed, they occasionally meet this presence, who they fully expect is Lizzie Bourne. Doors knock and open abruptly like elevator doors opening by themselves.

During my time on the mountain as an employee of the Appalachian Mountain Club back in the winter of 1950, I often got permission from my boss, the legendary Joe Dodge, to climb on foot the two thousand feet up to the old weather observatory at the summit. I was stationed in Tuckerman Ravine at 4000 feet above sea level and spent the winter stark raving alone except for those times visiting the weather observatory.

They had television, beer, radios to play with and company.

They also had big imaginations for playing practical jokes on one another! Spending time as they did away from society all winter made them very creative jokesters!

To illustrate I must mention one day I spent there when the phone rang and on the other end was a Yankee Network employee named George. George was a funny guy and seemed at all times to have just the last two inches of a cigar in his mouth. Occasionally he would strike a match and have a couple of puffs and then let it go out again.

On this day George called and asked what was on TV. Whitey Honkala told him what was on TV was the same thing that was on TV for the last two months and nothing else; the United Nations. Mind you, TV was then in its infancy and reception in top of the mountain was from a line of sight transmission from the Empire State Building in New York!

Any way, George presently entered the observatory and sat in the easy chair opposite the TV still with a cigar! Unknown to him, Whitey had taken the opportunity of opening the pedestal ashtray which was near full of butts and laying an M90 bomb therein!

After George sat down, the air was electric with anticipation. It was only with a strong effort that giggling was avoided. Whitey went to and fro doing chores as if all was well. After a half hour, sure enough, George lit his cigar and took several deep puffs, then automatically pressed the lever on the pedestal ashtray to put the cigar inside. After a full two minutes, the bomb went off, covering the living room in a fog of tobacco ashes and what not. The pedestal ashtray was no longer half a sphere; it was flat! Its cover with the opener was embedded in the ceiling and George was nowhere to be seen! Whitey was in tears, collapsed into a kitchen chair. See what happens when you are separated from society!

The real reason I mention any of this is because one day the cook quit and stormed out of the place and down the mountain muttering about people making a man live like a hermit.

Well, my goodness; that left the observatory with nobody to cook! True to their pioneering spirit, the boys all agreed to share to cooking chores with each taking the duty for a week at a time. When the going gets tough, the tough get going; I think!

One evening, when Whitey was cook, he boldly got out a large cookbook and proceeded to make home made bread; a noble enterprise if ever there was one. He mixed up the dough carefully, consulting his cooking literature as he went and finally put the dough in the unlit oven to rise. He was proud as a peacock and I rather thought he was doing an impressive job.

Whatever was on TV must have been good because we all sat watching for some time. After about forty five minutes, I glanced over in Whiteys direction. The poor guy was white as death and his eyes were like road maps staring in fright into the kitchen.

Not wanting a false alarm I waited but Whiteys stare remained intense and unabated. I nudged Norm Turner and pointed at Whitey. Norm, too, was concerned and called over to Whitey saying,  “Whitey! You all right?”  poor Whitey just elevated a finger and pointed into the kitchen. We got up to look and were confronted with Whitey’s bread dough having opened the oven door all by itself and was drooling onto the floor! We assured Whitey it was the dough and he gradually relaxed to his old self. It seems the problem was the result of the recipe for home made bread was a sea level recipe and we were at

6200 feet so the dough rose like no tomorrow!

On the other hand I asked Whitey why that should scare him. He said,  “Honest to God, I thought it was Lizzie Bourne’s ghost!” Well, now, who is to say it wasn’t?

Leonard Dalton – 12/25/1997

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Minutes for OH Steering Committee Meeting 6/20/17


Minutes for

OH Steering Committee Meeting,

June 20, 2017


Present: Josh Alper, Bill Barrett, Tom Kelleher, Moose Meserve, Stroker Rogovin, Elizabeth Seabury, John Thompson.

 1)         Treasurer’s Report

Dues are slow for this time of year, with only 339 paid out of 400 expected. Spring reunion income slightly surpassed expenses. A generous gift of $3K was received from the family of Bob Prescott, in his honor. In the expense column, we racked up over $800 for OHA tee shirts for current croo, which were well received, and for a modest grant to Jeff Colt and Phoebe Howe, for “Hutwoman (M)” hats they designed and distributed at Gala to current crew, to much acclaim. Most of their hat project was financed by themselves.


2)         Cabin

Y-OH photos are still trickling in and onto the walls of the Cabin at the invitation of the Steering Committee, with guidance from John Thompson and Eric Gottlieb, AMC Field Supervisor. John Thompson has also agreed to review existing cabin signage to help make it clearer, simpler to understand, and easier to find and read. After consulting with the Steering Committee and Cabin caretaker Mike Waddell, current croo member Jesse (last name?) has volunteered to plant and maintain a flower garden at the Cabin this summer. Thanks to a $3K gift from “Pemi” Bob Prescott’s family, the upper path from the access road to the cabin will get some much needed love in the months ahead, as will the bridge spanning the culvert by the road.


3)         Spring Reunion Report

Spring Reunion had become difficult to manage, but at Bridget Qualey’s suggestion we moved to

a pot-luck format this year, with organizers Bridget Qualey and Richard Stetson providing guidance and basics in the kitchen. The event was well attended by 35 people, mostly older OH. Willy Ashbrook made a guest appearance all the way from Texas, which no doubt helped attendance. The pot-luck model proved itself an unqualified success and will be repeated next spring.


 4)          Gala Report

Phoebe Howe and Jeff Colt served as OHA representatives to this year’s incoming croos at Gala, and distributed OHA tees, decals, and welcome letters as well as hats they produced themselves, which were a huge hit (see more info above in the Treasurer’s Report).


5)            Fallfest, 11/4

Speaker will be Bob Proudman & other AMC Trail Crew alum, giving a presentation on the history of TC. The annual fall meeting will also feature a Y-OH focus group, live acoustic music jam, a report on the summer from recent croo, a brief presentation on volunteer opportunities in the huts by an AMC vol coordinator, and the premier of videos from the Mizpah 50th and Lakes 100th anniversaries.


6)            Oktoberfest, 10/7

Weekend of October 7th has been designated for our annual prepping of the Cabin for winter. As usual, Bridget Qualey and Richard Stetson will be organizing the victuals and work party, which is open to all.


7)          Membership Development

Young OH and the Steering Committee have been doing a lot of brainstorming over the past few years to come up with fun ways to increase interest and participation by younger OH. Many of these ideas have already been implemented and are bearing fruit. Others are still in development.

While speaking with Huts Manager James Wrigley and Field Supervisor Etic Gotthold, Moose Meserve came up with the idea of hosting a Mountain Selfie Day. OH are invited to climb a mountain on 7/15 and share a photo of the occasion with others on the OHA Facebook and Instagram accounts.

Speaking of Instagram, we now have an official OH account, thanks to our West Coat Resuscitator Editor ,Will Murray: #ohcroo.

Family and individual season passes are now available for cabin use ($100 and $75 respectively), and seem to be catching on.

Putting the OHA brand front and center before current croo is happening in the form of tees distributed at Gala. Incoming croo also receive an OHA decal for the car, and welcome letters informing them of OHA events, cabin rules, membership benefits, etc.

The OHA is now sponsoring multiple ways to reconnect with the huts for free. OH can volunteer to serve as a Hut Ambassador (you and friend visit and help out). Pull a stint as fill-in croo. Or volunteer through the AMC as an info volunteer or naturalist at a hut.

The Steering Committee is still exploring the idea of providing community service opportunities for interested OH, possibly in conjunction with a reunion. Y-OH tell us they’d welcome these opportunities to give back to local communities. Let us know if you have suggestions or would like to help organize such an event yourself.

Our Resuscitator editor Beth Weick has been promoting hut vol opportunities in the newsletter—what good are great programs if people aren’t aware of them? So we’re getting the word out through notices, a regular column in the ‘Tator featuring testimonials, selfies on FB, and peer-to-peer buzz.

Last summer Nat Balch and Elizabeth Seabury sponsored a one-day get-together at a NH state park, geared toward young families, but the event didn’t seem to catch. We’re currently looking for a younger OH with family who might act as sponsor for the next such event, perhaps someone from the 90s? Elizabeth will speak with James Wrigley about likely candidates.

Last but not least, Dave Huntley has handed off the Mizpah and Lake Hut Anniversary video project to Lincoln Benedict. Doug Shaffer has offered to help. The Steering Committee has hired Lincoln to produce a feature film on the anniversaries themselves, and some shorter videos on the current croo experience and other fun topics. Videos will be premiered at Fallfest.


8)         Croo Photo Project

Thanks to the indefatigable work of Beth Eisenhower, we managed to locate quite a few missing croo photos for the hut croo photo project at Lonesome, plus some donations to help offset cost. Both Lonesome (new) and Greenleaf (refurbished) croo photo displays will be installed this summer.


9)         Website

Dan Racowsky is currently developing our new website with some help from OH Taylor Burt, Brian Post, and retiring webmaster Tom Kelleher. The new site will offer fresh design and improved functionality, including easier navigation and direct access to croo data. Dan may need help from OH to migrate content, and will be in touch with Taylor, Brian, and possibly others. Target date for unveiling the beta version is sometime in August, with a final version ready by the end of the month. Stroker to solicit photos for the new site from current croo and OH, with help from Huts management.

After some back and forth, it was decided to keep the old website domain name of ohcroo, instead of changing it to hutcroo. This handle is also used for our Twitter and Instagram accounts.

A number of Y-OH suggested developing a news app to allow real-time posting of ‘Tator news updates to the website prior to publishing in scheduled editions of the newsletter. This will be linked to the website. One concern is whether we’ll have enough content to keep things interesting. But for now, the advantages of real-time updates of timely stories and event notifications argues in favor of at least seeing where this goes. Privacy is another concern, but consensus is to make it public. If there’s demand, a private version can always be developed later.

Retiring webmaster Tom Kelleher will remain in change of obituaries and managing the PayPal account, which is an increasingly popular method of dues and cabin fee payments for many OH.

We’re looking for a new webmaster to run the new site. Dan has agreed to pilot the ship short-term until an OH volunteer steps up. This position is critical to our mission and we welcome any and all applicants with the right skills to step forward and join our leadership team.


10)        Resuscitator Update

Benny Taylor’s article onGender Huts, and Divinity” seems to have stimulated some lively debate, with only one negative review reported by editor Beth Weick. The Resuscitator is attracting an inceasing number of submissions from Y-OH. It’s also an important platform for informing our members about volunteer opportunities in the huts (including testimonials about hut visits) and other events and programs we sponsor.


11)          Hut System Report

2017 croo is two-thirds women.


12)        Trails Report

Elizabeth Seabury, John Thompson, and Bill Barrett will sponsor a trail work party on 6/29, starting at the cabin at 7:45 AM, to patrol the Hutman’s Trail.


13)        New & Other Bidness

For those who missed the previous meeting in Portland, Stroker reminded all that Beth Weick has been unanimously approved to serve as Vice Chair of the Steering Committee. Beth is already serving as Resuscitator Editor, and is one of our more important channels to Y-OH. She’ll be looking for Y-OH to represent the OHA at parties at the end of summer and fall, and fall croo gala.

Given early academic calendars, many summer croo now ship out in August and are replaced by what has effectively become a second wave of croo, fall croo. The Steering Committee has become increasingly aware of the importance of reaching out to fall croo as we do summer croo, and this includes providing representatives at fall events as well as summer with tees and welcome letters, and offering some modest financial support for the fall goodbye party as we do for the end-of-summer event. Moose to speak with Huts Manager James Wrigley about providing this support.


14)        Date for Next Steering Committee Meeting: Sept. 19, Boston, MA. Location TBD.







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Minutes for OH Steering Committee Meeting 4/25/17

Minutes for OH Steering Committee Meeting, April 25, 2017, Portland, Maine 

Present: Haley Acker, Nat Balch, Nathaniel Blauss, Jed Davis, Steve Frens, Eric Gotthold (Huts Field Supervisor), John Gross, Eric Larson, Jess Marrion, Ben McCrave, Elizabeth Seabury, Linus Story, John Thompson, Stroker Rogovin, Beth Weick, Gerry Whiting, Craig Whitton (Chair, Trail Crew Association).


  • Treasurer’s Report (Stroker for Moose)

Treasury is in good shape. Dues are a bit slow. “Pemi” Bob Prescott’s cousins donating $3K in his honor to go toward path improvements at the Cabin. Cabin roadwork to commence this summer, costing approximately $4.5K.


2)         Cabin (Stroker)

Y-OH photos going up on cabin walls, as discussed and invited by the Steering Committee. Cabin photos should reflect and celebrate all members. Cabin signage still in need of updating, simplifying, posting more clearly. Path and road improvements planned for the months ahead.   Upper path from access road to Cabin to be named the Pemi Bob Path, in memory of Bob Prescott. Stroker has made the sign.


3)         Event Planning (Stroker, Beth Weick)

Spring Reunion still scheduled for 5/20, but nobody stepping up to manage money, publicity, etc. Stroker to explore alternative options with Bridget Qualey and Richard Stetson, including BYO model.

OHA representatives at Gala this year are Phoebe Howe and Jeff Colt. Reps for fall Gala TBD. Croos to receive tees, decals, letters (w/ events, cabin rules, membership benefits).

Fallfest, 11/4. No joint reunion with TC as discussed earlier. Program to include Bob Proudman and others speaking on Trail Crew history; Y-OH meeting; live music; report from recent croo; and an AMC rep to plug hut volunteer opportunities.


4)         Membership Development (Beth, Nat Balch & Elizabeth Seabury, Stroker)

1) Encourage OH to host events & post photos on social media

2) Mountain Day photo sharing (take a summit selfie on 7/15 and post on OHA social media)

3) Other social media? Committee agreed to start an Instagram account.

4) Reduce cost of family cabin pass to $100.

5) Future Galas: tees, decals, letters introducing the OHA and benefits like the cabin. Other merch?

6) Hut volunteer opportunities: Hut Ambassador, fill-in, AMC info and Naturalists

7) Community volunteer opportunities: trail work, soup kitchen, etc? Morning of Fallfest?

8) Resuscitator leveraged to promote vol opportunities in the huts, carry stories and testimonials about hut visits, more articles by Y-OH, selfies on FB

9) Nat & Elizabeth: there may be demand for family-oriented events, but thses should be organized by someone with a young family and possibly held closer to Boston. Someone from the 90s?

10) Video project in the process of being handed over to Lincoln Benedict from Dave Huntley, who is limited by a move and new job. Videos to commemorate Lakes and Mizpah anniversaries, as well as show the current croo experience and fun. Doug Shaffer to help move project along.

11) Nathaniel Blauss to speak with James Wrigley, Hut System Manager, about the OHA sponsoring an internship in the huts, possibly in conjunction with AMC’s YOP program.

5)         Croo Photo Project (Stroker for Beth Eisenhower & Sally Dinsmore)

                 Lonesome and Greenleaf displays in production.


6)         Website (Stroker)

Dan Racowsky has been hired to develop a new website with help from current webmaster Tom Kelleher. New site to feature fresh design and improved functionality, esp. with croo data. New site will be based on WordPress templates, which allows customizable plug-ins and other ongoing upgrades with minimal cost and hassle. Migrating content may require help, particularly with croo data. OH Taylor Burt and Brian Post have expressed interest in lending a hand. Possibly others? Entire project should cost $5K and be ready in 2 – 3 months.


8)         Resuscitator Update (Beth)

Spring edition due out by April. Lots of content, much from Y-OH.


9)         Trails Report (Elizabeth Seabury, John Thompson, and Bill Barrett)

                 Work party to meet at Cabin on 6/29, 7:45 AM, to patrol Hutman’s Trail.


10)        New & Other Bidness

Check out the Hudson River School paintings of contemporary plein air painters Erik Koeppel and Lauren Sansaricq, of Jackson, NH.

Steering Committee voted unanimously (some in abstentia) for Beth Weick to serve as Vice Chair.

Whitney Brown is now a full-time, year-round field supervisor for the hut system.

Craig Whitton, Chairman of the Trail Crew Association, will send Trail Crew Reunion info (11/11) to webmaster and Resuscitator editor for inclusion in OHA communications.


11)        Date for Next Steering Committee Meeting: June 20, Boston, MA




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Minutes for OH Steering Committee Meeting, 2/22/17

Minutes for OHA Steering Committee Meeting, Feb. 22, 2017


Present: Josh Alper, Moose Meserve, Ari Ofsevit, Doug Shaffer, Stroker Rogovin, James Wrigley.

 1)          Treasurer’s Report (Moose).

2017 income has been strong to date, with minimal expense. Major expenses to come include road repairs at the Cabin, hut croo photo project for Lonesome Lake, and website development.


2)         Cabin (Stroker)

Huts Field Supervisor, Eric Gotthold, continues to oversee the addition of recent OH photos to the collection now on the Cabin walls. John Thompson is assisting. Ari Ofsevit will review signage at the Cabin and recommend improvements geared towards simplifying and consolidating our messaging.


3)         Event Planning (Moose, Stroker)

Spring Reunion, 5/20: Mike Waddell has stepped down as organizer so we’re looking for someone to manage this event. Moose to solicit input from Richard Stetson, Bridget Qualey, Dick Low, and other regular participants.


Gala: Beth Weick is compiling a list of younger OH who can represent the OHA at this hut system orientation and possibly at End-of-Summer and End-of-Fall parties. List includes Phoebe Howe, Jeff Colt, Ben Leoni, Lorne Currier. James Wrigley will suggest more candidates.


Fallfest, 11/4: featured speaker will be Bob Proudman, joined by other Trail Crew alum, who will speak about Trail Crew history. All TC alum are invited, and TC is welcome to hold their annual reunion alongside the OHA’s if they’re so inclined. Fallfest to feature an OHA focus group, as in recent years; live music jam; geology walk led by Brian Fowler; report on summer 2017 by current croo; possible volunteer project in the AM, followed by lunch at the Cabin; brief presentation by an AMC staffer on summer hut volunteer opportunities; plus plenty of other fun stuff.


4)         Membership Development (Moose, Stroker)

Moose Meserve had a productive meeting with James Wrigley and Eric Gotthold in which they explored how the AMC and OHA can support each other, and how the OHA can continue to expand our outreach to younger members, and recent and current croo. Some of the ideas discussed:

> Encourage OH to host events & post photos on the OHA website and FB page.

> July 15th is hereby declared OHA Mountain Day. Climb a mountain, take a photo, share it.

> Expand our social media presence. Snapchat, Instagram, other? Someone willing to lead this?

> Reduce cost of family cabin pass to $100. (Committee approved this measure.)

> Provide incoming croos with custom OHA tees, decals, water bottles, introduction letters (w/ events, cabin info, membership benefits)

> Keep exploring ideas for family-oriented events, but closer to Boston.

> Promote hut volunteer opportunities: Hut Ambassador, fill-in, AMC info and Naturalists.

> Sponsor community volunteer opportunities (possibly one during Fallfest).

> Produce more videos of social events, “croo experience”/fun, oral histories, etc.


5)         Lonesome Croo Photo Project (Stroker)

Beth Eisenhower has been spearheading the collection of missing photos and donations and will make one last push before sending materials to Sally Dinsmore for final production.


6)         Greenleaf Croo Photos (Stroker)

James Wrigley has a few historic Greenleaf photos that were left behind at Fallfest. Stroker to contact Bill Barrett about final disposition.


7)         Website (Stroker)

Stroker spoke with Joe Davis, a web marketer referred by John Thompson. He also sought the advice of web designer Dan Racowsky. Both sources recommended converting the current website to a WordPress format. Many major corporations and non-profits are using WordPress templates now that they have improved. WordPress is relatively inexpensive, the format is easy for multiple parties to use, and readily customizable, with plug-ins that should meet our needs. Committee agreed to hire a web developer to maximize functionality & help with migrating content. Dan Racowsky has experience with manually migratging wesbites (one of his projects, Scrum.org, has 25K members). Cost of this project should be around $5K and take 2 months. A subcommittee will assist, as needed: Ari Ofsevit, Beth Weick, Nathaniel Blauss, Taylor Burt, Stroker.


8)         Resuscitator Update



9)         Trails Report (Bill Barrett, John Thompson)



10)        Huts Report (James Wrigley)

James and staff recently completed 70 interviews for new croo. This year’s big project is the Lake’s septic

system. That’s big.


11)        New & Other Bidness

Stroker recently ran into master painters Erik Koeppel and Laura Sansaricq, now residents of Jackson, NH, who paint exquisite White Mountain landscapes in the style of the Hudson River School. Check out their stuff online. Mind-blowingly beautiful.

AMC Joe Dodge Award winner for 2017: our own Willy Ashbrook. Thanks to Elizabeth Seabury, Bill Barrett, and Benny Taylor for advancing his nomination. Well deserved!


11)        Date for Next Steering Committee Meeting: April 25, Portland, ME.




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Minutes for OH Steering Committee Meeting, 12/13/16

Minutes for

OH Steering Committee Meeting,

Dec. 13, 2016



Present: Nat Balch, Bill Barrett, Nathaniel Blauss, Tom Kelleher, Jenna Whitson Koloski, Moose Meserve, John Thompson, Stroker Rogovin, Beth Weick.



Treasurer’s Report (Moose). Financials looking good overall. Dues are slow, now at 95 (typically 400 annually), but are expected to pick up. Expenses way below income to date. Larger expenses to come in the year ahead include road work, Lonesome and Greenleaf Hut Croo photo projects, and production costs of video related to the recent Lakes and Mizpah hut anniversaries.


Cabin (Stroker). Photos of Y-OH photos are finally finding their way onto the walls of the cabin with the help of Huts Field Supervisor Eric Gotthold and John Thompson. A recent Resuscitator article invited younger members to contribute more photos.

Cabin signage needs improvement. Info needs updating, simplifying, consistency, more visible posting, etc. John Thompson to review, possibly with help from Ari Ofsevit.           


Fallfest (Beth Weick and Nathaniel Blauss, Bill Barrett, Stroker). Bill Barrett reported on the Greenleaf Croo Photo auction he managed, which sold 6 of the 8 decade photos, netting the OHA $170.

Lincoln Benedict produced a short video of the Lakes 100th Anniversary which he also helped shoot. He has access to additional raw footage and will be approached about producing additional videos. David Huntley donated his time and talents to the original push of shooting and cataloguing material, so after the cost of equipment rental, our original budget of $5K for video of the Lakes and Mizpah events still has funds remaining that can be put towards additional work. Both David and Lincoln are expected to contribute videos as their schedules allow.

A trail race held earlier in the day, was promoted and produced by Ari Ofsevit, who also conveniently won the event. Bill Barrett cooked chili for the surviving contestants.

Grace Pezella gave the featured presentation based on her graduate thesis: the history of women in the huts. The talk was well received, and Nathaniel Blauss will ask her for copies of her slides and text for archiving on the OH Website.

Beth Weick facilitated another fruitful Y-OH listening session before Happy Hour, with help from Nathaniel Blauss. It yielded additional helpful suggestions from Y-OH regarding the website, events, communications, the Cabin, and things we can do to improve our “brand.” Many of these suggestions have been mentioned before, and some have already been acted upon by the Steering Committee in the past few years. Some of these past accomplishments were reviewed, including:


Ideas we’ve implemented:

– affirming zero-tolerance for sexual harassment

– pack multiple events together during Fallfest (e.g., interesting speaker, music jam, trail race, after-party at the Cabin)

– non-PayPal options for paying dues and cabin fees (including credit and debit cards)

– delegate regional “fun coordinators” and encouraging them to plan social events

– reminders for ‘Tator submission before deadline (email and FB)

– use ‘Tator to solicit member info

– post Y-OH photos at Cabin (in progress)

– Y-OH representing the OHA at Gala

– OH opportunities in the huts, including fill-in croo and OH Ambassador Program

– OHA reps at End-of-Fall party (as well as Vinnie Night)

– keep events affordable and, where possible, accessible by public transportation

– encourage Y-OH to enjoy OH Ambassador hut visits

– link OH croo database to online member map

– sponsor events specifically geared toward Y-OH (pub crawls, trail race)


Ideas we’ve tried or are actively discussing:

– merging Gala and Spring Reunion (not viable in the short-term)

– upgrading the website

– more succinct and visible signage at Cabin

– family events targeting OH in their 30s and 40s


Ideas others have run with:

– online easy-to-use directory (via FB, courtesy of Caty Enders)


Ideas promoting Y-OH already undertaken by the Steering Committee:

– leadership sharing (7 of the 11 nominees for the 2017 Steering Committee are Y-OH, including both ‘Tator editors)

– direct outreach to Y-OH to help with events and planning

– “road show” Steering Committee meetings to towns with concentrations of members


Additional ideas proposed at this year’s Y-OH listening session:

– encourage people to refer to us as the OH, or OHA, not the Old Hutman’s Association. We have been officially incorporated as The OHA for over a decade, but confusion persists. Time to drop the old name. Women have been working in the huts for 40 years. We don’t need a name that makes us sound like a men’s club. This can be confusing and off-putting to younger women in particular.

– OH should hold each other to high standards of conduct and practice inclusivity, especially toward women and younger members

– distribute free OHA tees to incoming croo (Moose to get sizes from James Wrigley)

– make website compatible with mobile devices

– improve website functionality (particularly croo data base); simpler and more attractive design

– multiple ideas for leveraging online presence for job networking, help wanted, etc.

– improve communications with Fall croos, including welcome letters, OH membership cards,

OHA reps at Fall Gala and End-of-Fall party, invitation to join upcoming events, etc.

– stay on message that sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated

– keep expanding Cabin photo collection to include photos of more recent croos

– sponsor work projects, such as trail work, or volunteering in local communities (possibly

partnering with AMC and/or current croo), or a cabin work day

– actively promote opportunities for Y-OH to return to the huts as info vols, fill in, OH Hut Ambassadors, etc.


Membership Development (Elizabeth Seabury). Elizabeth organized a family day at a waterfront park in NH last August, targeted at OH with young families, but the event was poorly attended. She’ll continue to explore whether there’s a demand for family-oriented OH events, and what they might look like.


Lonesome Croo Photo Project (Stroker for Beth Eisenhower). Bushes have been beaten, funds raised, and missing photos found, all thanks to the persistence of Beth Eisenhower. James Wrigley and his crew have also done some searching for missing material. Plan is to move forward with what we have in hand to date, for delivery to the hut next spring. Stroker to follow up with Beth as well as Sally Dinsmore, who coordinates production for our Hut Croo Photo Project.


Greenleaf Croo Photos. No report.


Website (Nathaniel Blauss, Tom Kelleher, Stroker). Nathaniel reviewed recent Y-OH suggestions for improving the website, including more attractive design; easier navigation; mobile device compatibility; easier interface with croo database; ability to easily post events, photos, etc. John Thompson to provide Stroker with name of website designer who may be able to assist webmaster Tom Kelleher. A budget of $5K was approved to facilitate upgrades.


Resuscitator (Beth Weick). Fall publication date has been moved from 10/1 to 10/15, pending approval by Richard Stetson and Bridget Qualey, who organize Oktoberfest. Oktoberfest typically relies on word-of-moth and website listings on the website and Facebook, but Beth to check with the principals to ensure the new publication date doesn’t compromise promotional efforts.


Trails Report (Bill Barrett, John Thompson, Elizabeth Seabury). No new trail report. Future events should solicit help from Y-OH and current croo as a way to introduce generations to each other and encourage more active stewardship of the Hutman’s Trail and Hall’s Ledge.


New & Other Bidness. Various Trail Crew alum have suggested that the next Fallfest be a joint OH/TFC reunion, featuring Bob Proudman, who joined the AMC TFC in 1965, authored the AMC’s first guide to trail building and maintenance, and served the Appalachian Trail Conservancy as a department head for many years. The Committee approved Bob as speaker; Stroker to make arrangements.

OHA Scholarship Fund for current hut croo? Nathaniel to explore the idea further with James Wrigley. What would such a program seek to accomplish? How would it be administered? How would the program be funded?


Date for Next Steering Committee Meeting: TBD. Stroker to select an accessible venue in Boston for next meeting, with help from Nat Balch, Nathaniel Blauss, and others.





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Minutes for OH Steering Committee Meeting, 9/20/16

Minutes for

OH Steering Committee Meeting,

Sept. 20, 2016


Present: Nat Balch, Bill Barrett, Nathaniel Blauss, Tom Kelleher, Jess Marion, Moose Meserve, Stroker, Rogovin, Elizabeth Seabury, Doug Shaffer, John Thompson.


  • Treasurer’s Report (Moose)

No significant change in the numbers since June. Dues payments are down slightly for the year-to-date.

Pending expenses include 2017 road work at the cabin, and invoicing for last summer’s hut video project (probably to be submitted later this year). Cash balance is healthy enough to carry anticipated short-term expenses.


2)         Cabin (Stroker)

No progress to report on the collection and placement of “next generation” OH photos on Cabin walls, other than that Eric Gotthold and John Thompson are coordinating the project and hope to have photos up soon.

Signage inside cabin still needs to be updated and simplified for more effective communication with guests. Ari Ofsevit to make recommendations.

Road repairs have been pushed back to spring 2017; wood is in good supply.

Water quality at the cabin has dropped due to the current drought, raising the immediate question of safety (and whether we should encourage people to bring their own), and the longer-term question of whether we should research options for wells. Stroker to contact caretaker Mike Waddell for his input.


  • OH Hut Ambassador Program Report (Stroker for Josh Alper)

At least four huts received visits this summer from OH enjoying free overnights offered by the AMC hut system as part of our Ambassador porgram. In exchange for their stay, OH are asked to introduce themselves, be helpful, and get to know the croo and give the croo a sense of the OHA. This is a great deal and bears promoting among OH.

In addition to the OH Ambassador program, OH can also visit the huts as fill-in croo and as AMC info volunteers and hut naturalists. An AMC staffer will be speaking more about these opportunities at Fallfest.

  • Nominations for 2017 Officers (Stroker)

President; Stroker Rogovin

Treasurer: Moose Meserve

Secretary/Webmaster: Tom Kelleher

Resuscitator Editor: Beth Weick

Assistant Editor: Will Murray

Members-at-Large (confirmed): Elizabeth Seabury, James Wrigley, Ari Ofsevit, Nathaniel Blauss.

Members-at-Large (awaiting notification of acceptance): Betsy Cook, Abby King, Sarah Balch.

Members-at-Large (alternate): Josh Alper.

Toddler-at-Large (unofficial portfolio established by the Committee): Evie Wrigley.


5)         Fallfest, 11/5 (Stroker for Doug Hotchkiss & Shledon Perry)

            Featured speaker will be Grace Pezella, presenting her undergraduate research on the history of women in the hut system. Chuck Kellogg is slated to receive a posthumous OH Honorary Member award, to be presented by Doug Hotchkiss, Roger Foster, Andy Cook and daughter Betsy. Doug Hotchkiss and Josh Alper have designed a beautiful plaque, with help from Sally Dinsmore. Bridget Stetson will receive the OH Special Member award in recognition of her many years of helping to manage Oktoberfest and the Spring Reunion. Dick Low to present. The Kellogg family (8 – 10 members) will be receiving complimentary dinners at a reduced rate negotiated by Doug Hotchkiss.

We’ll also have a silent auction of historic Greenleaf croo photos, organized by Bill Barrett, to run during Happy Hour. Bill to publicize in the Resuscitator, website, FB, and through direct email. Dave Huntley reports progress on editing footage of the hut anniversary video footage shot last summer at the Lakes 100th and Mizpah 50th. Premier screening of his efforts to run concurrent with Happy Hour. Video trailers shold be completed soon for posting on FB and the website. Stroker to ask Dave if he could use help from Lincoln Benedict in editing some shorts. An acoustic music jam will also run concurrent to Happy Hour. AMC Volunteer Coordinator Kyra Salancy will describe volunteer opportunities for OH in the huts. Before Happy Hour we’ll be featuring a geological tour of Franconia Notch with Brian Fowler, (meet at the Highland center at 12 noon). Ari Ofsevit will be hosting the first ever Hutman’s Hustle, a 10K trail race starting from the Cabin at 12 noon. Should be quite a day and evening!! Make your resis now as this will sell out, as it has for the past few years. Info on the website.


6)         Oktoberfest 10/8 – 9

Richard Stetson and Bridget Qualey report that everything is ready to roll for Oktoberfest, the annual weekend of feasting and prepping the cabin for winter. Light work, good company, great food! RSVP to Richard Stetson; details on the website.   Event will be publicized in the Resucitator, on the website and FB page, and through a direct email to all members.


7)         Website (Tom Kelleher, Stroker)

            OH Caty Enders has introduced an easy-to-use directory for OH through the OHA Facebook page. In addition to basic info, it also allows members to list interests, whether they’d like to host visiting OH, and other useful info. The Google spreadsheet format is secure and info will not be shared with non-OH, same as info in the croo database on the OH website proper. Stroker discussed with Caty the need to properly vet anyone applying to join the directory—much the same way we screen for FB page membership and website data base. To avoid any possible confusion—and inform OH of all options at their disposal—it was agreed that notices will be posted on both Caty’s directory and the OH website directory alerting OH to the existence of both resources.

Tom Kelleher noted that the Achille’s heel of many on-line initiatives is that someone has to ultimately stick around to administer them. For the time being, Caty seems committed to managing her directory.

Longer-term, The Steering Committee delegated Nathaniel Blauss to ask Caty, Ari Ofsevit, and “Dominic” Kaplan to exchange ideas about what a perfect OH directory would look like; what needs would it address and how would it meet them? Who would implement and administer? Both the “official” OHA database and Caty’s directory perform useful functions and help OH to connect, but is there a way to streamline and improve? Nathaniel to report back.


8)         Hut Report (Stroker for James Wrigley)

James Wrigley reports via email that the summer season went well, with occupancy in the huts closely mirroring last year. Croo transitioning from summer to fall service ebnjoyed a few days off in between, with fill-in croos covering (including many OH). Fall croos started off well, with things already slowing down. Lakes closed on 9/17, and Carter transitioned to self-service. Madison closed this week.


9)         Membership Development (Elizabeth Seabury, Nat Balch)

            The OH Family Day picnic at Pawtuckaway Park, in NH, was very poorly attended, suggesting that late-August just isn’t a good time for family oriented events given back-to-school pressures. Nat and Elizabeth will be exploring other possible events and scheduling oriented towards OH with young families, and Elizabeth will be making a short presentation at Fallfest to let OH know we’re exploring this concept and welcome input.


10)        Lonesome Croo Photo Project (Stroker for Beth Eisenhower)

            Beth has managed to assemble photos from 11 Lonesome croos, from an original collection of exactly zero, but we’re still missing many years. We have croo photos for the following years: 1971,1974, 1980, 1983, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2014, 2015. We need ALL OTHER YEARS, and all fall croos. Beth has collected $200 towards the Lonesome Hut Croo Photo Project, but we need more. Special button is on the website for easy giving online. Lonesome is the last hut on our list before we start updating existing collections. Anyone who worked at Lonesome or is in touch with Lonesome croos, please put out the word. Get those photos and donations in now. Sally Dinsmore goes to press with whatever we have in hand in a few months.


11)        Greenleaf Croo Photos

            Someone dropped the ball on this. Replacement croo photos never got processed and delivered to the hut last spring, so Flea is currently without a display. Sally has everything archived digitally, so she’ll be creating a new display for delivery this spring. Greenleaf croo are encouraged to donate to support this project, a refurbishment of photos that originally went in over well 10 years ago. Donations are accepted through the website. Current reproduction techniques will ensure this updated collection will last longer.


12)        Resuscitator (Stroker for Beth Weick)

            Copy deadline was 9/15. Fall edition should be out by 10/1, with publicity for Fallfest and Oktoberfest. Gormings always welcome.


13)        Trails Report (Bill Barrett, John Thompson, Elizabeth Seabury)

            Bill, J.T. and Elizabeth, along with Elizabeth’s son and Husband Tom, met on 7/1 to patrol the Hutman’s Trail. Bill patrolled Hall’s Ledge the following day.


14)        New & Other Bidness

            2017 Joe Dodge Award nominee is Willy Ashbrook, nominated last year as well. Bill Barrett and Beythany “Benny” Taylor to serve as OH reps on the Award Committee, slated to convene later this fall. Elizabeth Seabury drafted the nominating text last year and will forward to Bill Barrett for reworking, possibly with help from Josh Alper and Doug Hotchkiss.


15)        Date for Next Steering Committee Meeting: Dec. 13, Portsmouth, NH. Exact location TBD by Nat Balch and John Thompson.







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