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"Options For Cold Wars 2019: You Make The Call" Topic

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©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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47Ronin02 Dec 2018 2:31 p.m. PST

Through the magic of TMP (and some behind the scenes maneuvering by The Deep State), you have been appointed a director of HMGS (East) and must vote on the location of Cold Wars 2019 based on what you know today. Your choices are as follows:

a) remain at The Host at Lancaster;

b) move to The Ike at Gettysburg;

c) skip the entire thing and wait until 2020; or

d) some other bright idea that only you can think of.

You may not abstain. You may not whine. You may not resign. (We know some of you all too well.) Your recommendation may not be adopted, but you will be bringing joy to the hearts of many (including sick little boys and girls) during the Holiday season.

Let the voting begin.

Happy Holidays.

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP02 Dec 2018 2:36 p.m. PST

Move to The Ike at Gettysburg and never ever uses the Host again!!!!!!!

Personal logo Bowman Supporting Member of TMP02 Dec 2018 3:03 p.m. PST

Shouldn't we have some more info?

What would the legal implications be to break the contract with the Host?

What are the costs at the Host and the Ike?

Is the Ike still charging for the Sports Complex on top of the other expenses?

You know, stuff like that, that a real BOD member would have to concern themselves with.

DisasterWargamer Supporting Member of TMP02 Dec 2018 3:03 p.m. PST

e) a Caribbean Cruise

or f) move to warmer weather

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP02 Dec 2018 3:08 p.m. PST

Did the Deep State also kill our contract with the Host? And refund the money about 300 of our members have already paid for rooms at the Host on the weekend we already told them we'd be there? How about the wargamers who have already paid for rooms in other motels in the vicinity based on our commitment to hold a convention then and there? The bullet is already headed down range, and you want to pick a different target. In the immortal words of Kosh, "the avalanche has started: it is too late for the pebbles to vote."

We do the best we can with the Host for 2019. Saturday evening, we either sign a contract with the Host for 2020 and 2021 or we sing "Auld Lang Syne" in what's left of the lobby and sign a contract with the Ike. What we don't do is spend two months dithering after Cold Wars 2019. By the time people are packing, there should be reservation forms in the lobby for Cold Wars 2020--somewhere.

But no, we do not go back and change history. The 2019 decision was made a little late as it was. It's better than six months too late now.

capncarp02 Dec 2018 3:10 p.m. PST

e) a Caribbean Cruise
YES! Several cruise lines sail from Baltimore, and if we reserved a large number of cabins, we could have a wargame-themed cruise!

Dynaman878902 Dec 2018 4:28 p.m. PST

The only problem with a wargame themed cruise is we are too cheap to even afford a Carnival ship.

JohnBSnead Supporting Member of TMP02 Dec 2018 5:24 p.m. PST

A – The pain and hassle of changing at this late date are too great. In addition, the renovated rooms I have stayed in are actually very nice.

The food at Fall In! was very good. I just hope the provider didn't lose money.

The gaming areas were no worse than some friend's basements I have gamed in.

The only real problem is the handicapped access issue and they have three months to improve in that area.

KPinder02 Dec 2018 5:52 p.m. PST

Once more unto the breach dear friends…


JMcCarroll02 Dec 2018 6:04 p.m. PST

"Move to The Ike at Gettysburg and never ever uses the Host again!!!!!!!"

Agree! Always did like the Ike, the small town area and of coarse the sweet battlefield.
Others may disagree, just my two cents.

masm611002 Dec 2018 6:04 p.m. PST

>>remain at The Host at Lancaster;

I already have a room!

corzin02 Dec 2018 7:33 p.m. PST

has the ike done anything in the last few years to deserve us back?

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP02 Dec 2018 7:47 p.m. PST

Mike the question is not that you have a room, but does the room have you. Corzin what the heck has the host done to deserve us.

masm611002 Dec 2018 8:14 p.m. PST

Hi Bill

For the time I spend in the room it really does not matter that much to me. I do in general like to stay at the same location as the show for convenience sake.

In as far as the question goes it is specific to "2019" .
Now if asked about 2020 perhaps I would have said Valley Forge.


corzin03 Dec 2018 4:17 a.m. PST

i'm just saying there seems to be a group of people here who think Ike is some awesome place that we should go running too. it sucked as a convention site too, just for different reasons. find somewhere else as your plan B and maybe i can get behind it.

which of course goes back to our whole problem…there is no great plan B

ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 5:22 a.m. PST

Stay at the Host.

YogiBearMinis Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 5:43 a.m. PST

This thread is a waste of time and just stirring the pot. Life will go on if the Host is not perfect for Cold Wars in March. The real issue is 2020–THAT is worth discussing, though even that topic might be better put off until the Board gets a price quote for 2020 and an update on likely renovation progress by then.

Personal logo Patrick R Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 5:44 a.m. PST

Going along with the scenario, based on my very limited experience and limited choice of options above, I'd say go for the Ike.

Realistically ?

I wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole.

If forced ?

Try to find out the a balance for the "least evil" option.

PJ ONeill03 Dec 2018 7:40 a.m. PST

Unless the Ike hotel is completely trashed, use it this one time, and maybe, if it works, use it as an option going forward.
Reduce the square footage requested by 10-15% for the tournaments and open gaming. I don't know the numbers, but as an example, ask for 65K instead of 80K.
Reduce the number of games accepted, for this 1 con. Maybe accept only games from previous GMs, or pick a # and that is the max # of games.
Squeeze everything into the hotel and don't use the All-Star at all.
It would be nice to repair the bad feelings generated by previous contact and be a lesson on our flexibility.

Personal logo Milhouse Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 8:30 a.m. PST

What people don't seem to realize is that if the Host does not improve over Fall In, any kind of weather will force Cold Wars to be cancelled. Not having an Ike plan B seems a mistake

historygamer Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 9:16 a.m. PST

I agree with Milhouse, though it is likely too late at this point.

It was reported, by those that know, that the Host offered to let HMGS out of the contract for Cold Wars without penalty. It was further reported that VFCC was contacted, but said they were already booked. I am not aware that any other venue was looked at by the org.

What we do know is that the Host is a huge mess, not likely to be significantly better in March. We also know that several people fell walking to and from the dealer hall. I guess HMGS is hoping it doesn't snow, which seems an uncertain bet for a convention whose name is Cold Wars for a reason. Let's hope they are right.

Joerg Bender Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 9:20 a.m. PST

Not everyone will like this. In my opinion HMGS needs to spread their 3 conventions geographically.

Cold Wars: Fredericksburg, VA

Historicon: Lancaster, PA

Fall-In: Mohegan Sun, CT

BTCTerrainman Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 10:27 a.m. PST

Joerg, unless Cold War's dates change to late March or early April, we will likely suffer a horrible show in Fredericksburg. It does still snow in March in Northern, VA and unless you are familiar with snow removal practices in Virginia it is easy to assume the roads get cleared as fast as the north or that people go out in it. Virginia generally shuts down during a snow storm, so if you think I-95 is bad in the summer, try snow.

Fall In would be a much better option for Fredericksburg especially if it is tied with the Veterans Day weekend.

DeRuyter03 Dec 2018 10:58 a.m. PST

Has anyone who is suggesting the Ike been there recently? Well I stayed there because the room was a good deal for summer in Gettysburg and it was a dump. That's not counting the issues with the Expo center of course.

Frankly most venues with the amount of renovation going on as the Host would close down while it was in progress. Having said that despite the incredibly slow pace of the construction there are encouraging signs. Though I wouldn't count on any major improvement by CW. Question is it worth a change at this point – IMO no.

TRUgamer03 Dec 2018 11:26 a.m. PST

The BOD sent a director to the Ike within the last couple years and it was ruled out.
Also, its not like HMGS will be forgiven its obligation to the Host for CW19 and trying to renegotiate from a position on weakness is pure folly.

Suck it up buttercup… accept that its the Host or nothing at this late date.
Make the best of it and lets make this the last hurrah at the "Old Host".

Maybe once the "New Host" is ready then maybe we entertain our return. Don't expect that it will be a bargain in any case. Want to do a better job? Run for the BOD.

Since I already registered my games I guess I expect it to be at the Host in 2019.


shirleys painting03 Dec 2018 12:18 p.m. PST

Was'nt it going to New Jersey…Summerville? Why am I thinking I read that somewhere?

pvi99th03 Dec 2018 12:48 p.m. PST

If we don't leave it at the Host, what will people have to complain about afterward?

Oh, wait, they would find something…

KPinder03 Dec 2018 1:16 p.m. PST


Somerset NJ was to have been the site for the 2018 Historicon, but, while the hotel is was available, the adjacent con site was sold to some data company for use as a mainframe farm.

We couldn't catch a break with a butterfly net.

Personal logo Milhouse Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 1:57 p.m. PST

TRUgamer I am worried it will be nothing .

And we will have to like it, like Spaulding Smails.

TSD10103 Dec 2018 3:13 p.m. PST

In my opinion HMGS needs to spread their 3 conventions geographically.

Cold Wars: Fredericksburg, VA

It no longer worked financially for the largest HMGS con, Historicon which lost attendance almost every year while there, so I'm sure it'll work for a smaller con like Cold Wars.

Personal logo Milhouse Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 4:16 p.m. PST

I've been told Fredericksburg got really pricey for Historicon . My guess is the same is likely true for CW.

Personal logo Der Alte Fritz Sponsoring Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 5:20 p.m. PST

What has the Host told the BOD about the timing of a complete rehab of the facility?

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 7:41 p.m. PST

You know, I really don't care what the Host tells anyone. Four conventions running, they've told me the restaurant will be up and running for the next convention, and I'm sure others among us have been told similar fairy tales about other features. I've heard a few at second hand. Either they're lying to us as a matter of policy, or they haven't the remotest notion what's going to be done when.

Not to say the BOD shouldn't sign with them again. But the decision has to be based on observed conditions, and the Board's own estimate of future conditions. A schedule from the present Host management is meaningless.

Ah. Fredericksburg. I understand only attendance by HMGS membership was counted, that the FCC had more non-members than we normally get--and THAT number was rising. I'd chance it for Cold Wars despite the truly abominable VDOT snow removal program. There is no viable site in HMGS East we couldn't lose to snow that time of year.

And we always, always have to keep in mind wargaming populations relative to convention sites. I like the "northern option" in the abstract, but I personally am never driving through or around New York to attend a wargame convention. Any of you familiar with the DC Beltway? Chicago? New York is worse. SEOUL is better than New York.

BTCTerrainman Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2018 8:39 p.m. PST

Robert, I appreciate your view, but coming from the North, your winter view is a bit slanted to what you are used to (I also originally grew up in PA, but have been in VA for 30 years and travel a lot for work). In Lancaster, a snow storm usually only slows the show for the day, and with many of the attendees used to snow and driving in it, they will venture out. In VA, most folks just will stay in and not risk it (after all it will usually be gone in a few days with occasional exceptions), and VDOT focuses on the main highways and only when they are clear venture into the subdivisions and other lesser highways (having been a firefighter for 23 years in both states, the later would annoy me because we were forced to keep chains on our trucks for days because we needed them when we got off the main roads – chains equal 35mph to avoid damage….). Thus a show can survive in Lancaster with snow, but it will not survive in Virginia with snow (and we have had quite a few shows with snow in Lancaster). As a vendor I would have to rethink things for an early March show in Virginia.

ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Dec 2018 5:21 a.m. PST

This discussion really is pointless. Cold War is only a little over three months away. Finding another site in that short a time is simply impossible. Can't be done. Cold Wars will be at the Host, like it or not.

YogiBearMinis Supporting Member of TMP04 Dec 2018 5:42 a.m. PST

I remember coming to one Cold Wars through a massive snow storm some years ago—rough coming in but PDOT got things cleared relatively quickly. As someone points out, Lancaster, and particularly Hwy 30, gets cleared efficiently compared to other regions.

Dynaman878904 Dec 2018 6:25 a.m. PST

> This discussion really is pointless.

Well, this is TMP, and more specifically a conversation about the Host…

Personal logo edmuel2000 Supporting Member of TMP04 Dec 2018 8:04 a.m. PST

You left out e)Troll TMP with a stupid poll

TRUgamer04 Dec 2018 1:34 p.m. PST

The poll may be nearer to reality than we would like.


47Ronin04 Dec 2018 3:17 p.m. PST

If you think this topic is "pointless", "stupid" or just another TMP troll, you are entitled to your opinion.

If you knew the genesis behind starting this discussion, you might think twice. Remember, we said no whining.

You may think moving a convention on 3 months notice is impossible. Once again, you are entitled to your opinion. Nevertheless, it is being considered.

If you want to weigh in, this is your chance.

Happy Holidays.

Personal logo Milhouse Supporting Member of TMP04 Dec 2018 7:48 p.m. PST

It's not even a snow storm that could derail the Host in March. It could be a storm from a week before. But there is still snow on the ground = no parking. Limited access to dealer hall.

47Ronin and I raised this question with good reason. The Host may simply not be an option. Those of you gutting it out there may be all by yourselves .

custosarmorum Supporting Member of TMP04 Dec 2018 9:06 p.m. PST

The current BoD seems to have done a lot of positive things and this issue might be their most serious challenge. I would be disappointed if they jumped into a high risk course of action like a last minute move without considering lower risk courses of action to mitigate the situation.

For example, if snow clearance is a big concern, is there any kind of collaboration with the Host that could address it? Would it be possible for HMGS to pay for additional contract plows, for example? I know that HMGS should not have to do this, but is it not a lower risk option than moving the con? What possibilities are there to make the vendor hall more accessible? Again, could HMGS pay for some kind of shuttle service, whether more golf carts or even a couple of vans?

These mitigation efforts might reduce the organization's surplus for the convention, but with nearly $400 USDk in reserve, I think they can afford to do it on a one-time basis. I am sure the BoD can come up with many other better ideas as well.

historygamer Supporting Member of TMP04 Dec 2018 9:28 p.m. PST

custosarmorum said:

"Would it be possible for HMGS to pay for additional contract plows, for example?"

Not an unreasonable suggestion. The main impediment to that idea would be the amount of random construction obstructions scattered about the parking lot – preventing any meaningful plowing from taking place.

"…could HMGS pay for some kind of shuttle service, whether more golf carts or even a couple of vans?"

Again, not an unreasonable suggestion. I believe ice and snow
would rule out golf carts (no tread on tires, open to the elements). A full shuttle bus might work, but forget a van. They had one of those at the Ike and crawling over other gamers was awful. I guess their old shuttle bus gave up the ghost.

I think the other wild card is the condition of the gaming areas. They were pretty rough, and the Distlefink – the main gaming area – was almost unusable. I heard the staff only learned of the room being cut in half a scant few days before, and someone else told me that a week before there was no ceiling in the room. I can believe it. Oh, and you can forget the great food vendor setting outside in mid-March. Where would they set up? They were great, by the way.

Given the updated posts, I'd say move to the Ike. It is a venue well known to HMGS. It is on flat ground. Hire a full size shuttle bus, bring in caterers. It may not be ideal, but it just might be better than the Host, snow or not.

civildisobedience04 Dec 2018 9:47 p.m. PST

Is "stop the incessant whining about the Host" one of the choices?

A close second:

"Stop the incessant whining about potential snow"

Rotundo05 Dec 2018 3:46 a.m. PST

Gut out this last Con at the Host. Concentrate any efforts on the future Cons.

Dynaman878905 Dec 2018 5:17 a.m. PST

> If you think this topic is "pointless", "stupid" or just another TMP troll, you are entitled to your opinion.

It is more than just an opinion. If you REALLY want to get the con moved you are barking up the wrong tree. The normal bitching and moaning here does nothing – go to the HMGS site and talk with the people that could actually get it moved, and perhaps give real figures on breaking contract and what options were already looked at in terms of other venues.

But you are of course "entitled to your opinion"

KPinder05 Dec 2018 7:28 a.m. PST

Don't leave home without them,

Personal logo Bowman Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2018 8:26 a.m. PST

Isn't that Yaktrax ad a little overboard for Pennsylvania in mid-March?

+1 to Dynaman8789 and civildisobedience.

KPinder05 Dec 2018 10:50 a.m. PST

When there's ice on the ground, or slidy packed snow, you want something to keep your arse off the ice, whatever the month. If there a'int no ice, there a'int no problem,…otherwise…

Personal logo Bowman Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2018 12:09 p.m. PST

Or use salt and gravel?

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