VW Vortex - Volkswagen Forum banner

41 - 60 of 84 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
I think it would be cool if sowo was moved to Asheville. Not that it's a German themed town, but it has awesome food, plenty of hotels and its beautiful. Plus everyone can cruise on the blue ridge parkway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,331 Posts
Where the **** is everyone getting this from? People exaggerate everything nowadays. I had a fantastic weekend, I didn't get into any trouble, every shop owner or employee I spoke to was friendly and started small talk with me about the show. The police were friendly. The "mayhem" was for only a few hours on one day, and it was contained in front of the Days Inn on the street. The Helendorf was chill, pretty much everywhere else was normal too. I saw some people that looked like they were affiliated with the show picking up trash in the street. In fact, when I got back into town the next morning, aside form the skid marks, you couldn't tell anything had happened. So I think saying they DESTROYED the town is a ridiculous exaggeration. :rolleyes:

This is my exact take on the show. Sure things may have gotten a little crazy at times but the majority of the time things were great. I don't see what the big deal is.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,120 Posts
I don't know why everyone is so suppressed that the local business support the show. They should, its a boat load of money for them. Its in their best interest to play nice. the locals who don't get anything but aggravation from a packed town are going to do nothing but complain.

Its simple. if someone benefits they are going to welcome it, the second they don't gain anything they are going to complain
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,050 Posts
Cliff notes from talking to a friend (who was actually at the show):

2015 was the NINTH year of SoWo. In that time the show attendance has gone up 20 - 25% a year.

Seems like the city would have been better prepared on their end, working with SoWo Partners, local business owners, local year-round residents, and law enforcement to have plans and infrastructure in place to handle the crowds they should have anticipated. This is how it's done in other cities that host large events - Mardi Gras, Bike Week @ Daytona, St Paddy's day, Super Bowl, any of which is many times the size of SoWo.

Instead, every year the city has made increased demands on show organizers to shoulder more and more responsibility, while the city sits on it's hands and they and local businesses rake in the proceeds.

Simply put, they want to sit back and rake in the money, without having to expend any of their own resources.

Locals acting like the show was something that caught them off-guard is laughable. It's not a summer thunderstorm. SoWo has been held on the weekend after Mother's Day since 2007 I think. They knew it was going to happen, and should / could have made plans to shelter - in - place or simply go on a weekend trip of their own. Instead many of them stuck their heads in the sand, and now they want to cry about it after the fact.

This morning there was news that the city requested assistance from the GSP to help with crowd control, but then refused the GSP's request for additional manpower for crowd control. So the finger - pointing has begun on that end too.

In order to survive, the show is going to have to find a new host city. One that is willing to WORK with show organizers, instead of using the show as a means to line their own pockets.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
114 Posts
Looking at this from an Event Management viewpoint. Once a venue is seeing more negative consequences from an event than positive they will be less likely to allow you back. That is completely subjective to them and up to their biases, not yours.

Your event facilitates the "after party" by existing. If your show didn't exist neither would the after party. Even if it is not a direct implication of the show it still comes with the show. When a show outgrows a venue it is generally up to the show to change the venue, not blame the venue.

You wouldn't try to cram a couple thousand more people into a stadium and than blame the stadium for not being able to accommodate. The burden of extra security is on the organizers not the venue because frankly the venue is just going to say no next time and you lose.

In the case of a local municipality putting on a large event generally the organizers will work with that municipality and local law enforcement to ensure that the event population can be managed. Sometimes the municipalities take this cost on themselves and sometimes the organizers will help front the cost of addition law enforcement. Helen is a tiny town, it cannot accommodate it's population swelling nearly 30 times on its own. If SoWo wants to continue happening they are going to have to chip in or find a new venue.

Sorry for the long winded rant, this is just what I do for a living. I want to see SoWo happen again. It's a great show.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
56 Posts
A great option to control crowds during the night would be to provide them a venue for spending time. Bring in a relatively well-known electronic artist, set up a stage on the show grounds, charge reasonable price, put on a concert. A good chunk of the people are now contained, even security can be hired to manage them, vendors can come in and make even more money.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,689 Posts
Nice Find! Its interesting to hear what the locals opinions are. I still think the heart of the original SOWO is the fact that it feels like Bavaria. Taking it to another town just makes it another regular show
I agree with this. It would suck to not have this show in Helen. The whole theme is what makes it for me. Plus it is a cool little town. However, It also does feel like the show has just gotten too big for this little town.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
352 Posts
What makes SoWo for me is being able to see friends I haven't seen in months, while hanging out around cool cars and enjoying the scenery. Helen itself has very little to do with that. Move it to Pigeon Forge, or Gatlinburg, or Chattanooga, or wherever. Doesn't really matter to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,669 Posts
What makes SoWo for me is being able to see friends I haven't seen in months, while hanging out around cool cars and enjoying the scenery. Helen itself has very little to do with that. Move it to Pigeon Forge, or Gatlinburg, or Chattanooga, or wherever. Doesn't really matter to me.
This..

Helen is nice, and I have enjoyed the show the past 4 years but I will go wherever it's hosted at.

And I will still have a good time!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,120 Posts
A great option to control crowds during the night would be to provide them a venue for spending time. Bring in a relatively well-known electronic artist, set up a stage on the show grounds, charge reasonable price, put on a concert. A good chunk of the people are now contained, even security can be hired to manage them, vendors can come in and make even more money.
the idea is good. Just like After Fest at Waterfest. I went to that last year and it seemed to work real well. As far as bringing in a well known electronic artist, meh. I know it was just an idea. But if you do something like that you are going to need accommodate all types of music. I know ,I myself, am tires of the EDM stuff. I feel its overstayed its welcome, but that's a rant I don't feel like getting into. Anyway, brining in any well known music artist would be BIG bucks. A decent DJ from with in our community would work just fine in my opinion
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
766 Posts
the idea is good. Just like After Fest at Waterfest. I went to that last year and it seemed to work real well. As far as bringing in a well known electronic artist, meh. I know it was just an idea. But if you do something like that you are going to need accommodate all types of music. I know ,I myself, am tires of the EDM stuff. I feel its overstayed its welcome, but that's a rant I don't feel like getting into. Anyway, brining in any well known music artist would be BIG bucks. A decent DJ from with in our community would work just fine in my opinion
^ this. if you watch some vids of VW shows in Poland they do a Dj and hang out at night and party. one show even had strippers. :thumbup:

Look up Vag Event 2013/2014 if you are interested. they have some awesome shows at solid venues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Truth: their local economy is almost 100% tourism based, but the locals are openly hostile to tourists and want them all to leave and stay out.

I say give the locals what they want, and let their idyllic mountain paradise wither away and become a haven for meth heads.
Didn't get the hostility vibe at all. Everyone we encountered were extremely nice and Dave at the Unicoi State park lodge even came into town Fri. to pick us up because all of the taxis would not answer their phones due to call volume. Not bashing you, just had a totally different experience with the locals.

SOWO 2015 official motto: "DO A BURNOUT" :facepalm:
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
233 Posts
LOL @ "hotels take advantage" , WELL YEAH. That's the idea. It's called supply and demand. Nobody seems to forget many hotels get screwed too by same day or last minute cancellations. It's a business. If you don't like the hotel rates, don't come. Yeah b/c Chatanooga or any other town that gets booked up doesn't raise the rates as rooms grow scarce. That's the hotel business 101.

I talked with many of the business people and apologized to them for the people who acted like morons.

SoWo chaos has escalated over the past few years with people acting like bigger idiots each year. This was the worst year.

Helen PD is partially to blame -- the Chief saying "30 minutes of burnouts" was a bad idea -- Once you green light lunacy you can't get the city back. If it were me, the cops should have arrested the instigators with bullhorns egging on the chaos. You arrest them, march them off in front of everyone, and set a tone. I saw this happen at h2o last year, a kid with a bullhorn kept yelling burnout show us your tatas etc at a stoplight, finally an OCPD cop came up behind him and picked him up out of his chair and arrested him. That kid turned ghost white.....And everyone within ear shot took notice.

They don't have to ticket or arrest like OCPD, but they need to move more in that direction. But this is the south and we love treating people like family. Idiots have taken advantage of Helen's welcome attitude and open hand.

Personally, I won't go to a diff city if they move it, I'll still be in Helen. Let the show go to TN and take the "outkasts" and JDM cars with it and the idiocy.

I'm actually trying to get a small but decent size of Euros to visit Helen during H2oi week to have a laid back time and hang out, or possibly a coastal city in FL like Panama City. Let everyone else go to OC to get their tickets.

What does moving the show do?

You still will have the chaos, and you will still have people who show up and cause problems for the city and before you know it, you have ANOTHER CITY who doesn't want the problems. Businesses want it, residents don't. And one side always wins.....So moving it maybe you get more hotel space, but big deal, the rooms will still sell out and rates will still go up to $175 a night.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
233 Posts
Didn't get the hostility vibe at all. Everyone we encountered were extremely nice and Dave at the Unicoi State park lodge even came into town Fri. to pick us up because all of the taxis would not answer their phones due to call volume. Not bashing you, just had a totally different experience with the locals.

SOWO 2015 official motto: "DO A BURNOUT" :facepalm:


Agreed I talked to a lot of locals and business owners, they love it. They don't like the burnouts and the disrespect, garbage bottles etc in the streets.....Which you'd think isn't asking much. Plus many of the locals come and get involved in the chaos - the guy in the pick up truck who was driving suspended and did a burnout, IIRC he was a GA native. Think about it, your town has nothing going on, and bam, thousands of cars and partying shows up, what do you do? You go get involved.
 
41 - 60 of 84 Posts
Top