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Gentleman, the time has come. A call to action - national level convention

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  • Gentleman, the time has come. A call to action - national level convention

    Our speed bag community has grown by leaps and bounds over the past years. We have a tightly knit group, a family, of incredibly talented members hailing from various locations.

    I believe we have reached the point, a critical mass, where we simply must organize a national level gathering of speed bag enthusiasts. Between the speedbagforum.com, speedbagcentral.com, youtube, and offline communities we have an outstanding roster of talented individuals, such as:

    Speedbag (Alan Kahn)
    Speed Bag Skunk (Zach Ruffo)
    Dee Pooler
    Paulie D (The Punch Professor)
    BillyMackk
    Spinsmashpop (Brian Tichey)
    Showtime Johnny Pal
    Biff
    Speed Bag Scissor Hands
    John Baca
    Rocky Greiner
    (and the list goes on and on)

    It's time to take the next step of synergy, camaraderie, and promotion of the art of the speed bag.

    I propose we arrange to meet, in person, next summer at a centrally located public location for a multi-day speed bag extravaganza.

    I have thought long and hard about this originally with Alan, and most recently with Brian and Skunk. I believe I have a proposal for an economical, and workable solution, which I shall describe below:

    What
    An in person, face to face gathering of speed bag enthusiasts - of all skill levels. An event (a convention) spanning multiple days of learning, practicing, teaching, competition, and freestyle bag punching.

    When
    Allowing sufficient time for personal planning, scheduling of travel, and reserving resource availability dictates a timeframe of Summer 2010 (June, July, or August). This would be a multi-day event, probably spanning a weekend (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) during one of those months.

    Where
    A public location (Hotel with conference center, or a gym) in an easily accessible city. I propose Las Vegas, NV for a number of reasons: cheap and available airfare and lodging, a multitude of private gyms (MMA), and an abundance of hotel/conference centers.

    I believe with the speed bag community we have, we can reasonably expect between 6 and 24 baggers participating. Perhaps we would get "walk ins" depending on our location, but I think 6 to 24 is a reasonable expectation for this summer.

    As such, this dictates the need for lodging for that number of people and a number of speed bag platforms (the more the better).

    I believe our best bet would be to arrange a group rate at a hotel and reserve a conference room in which we would setup several speed bag cages, similar to mine, but having multiple platforms (6 or more). I have a preliminary design by which I can create a transportable cage that can be setup in 60 minutes but would house 7 to 9 speed bag platforms of varying height, simultaneously , depending on configuration (more details on that later).

    Alternatively, we could meet at a local gym (boxing or MMA) that already has speed bag platforms. I believe the conference room option is more desirable because the hours will be more flexible and open to our use for any purpose (no worries of disrupting kickboxing class with the sound of the speed bag, punch drumming, etc.) Also , I've not yet seen a gym, other than Ruffo's gym, that has a sufficient number of speed bags to keep 6 or more baggers engaged at once.

    How Much?
    Airfare to Las Vegas NV is readily available and cheap. Lodging is also cheap there. Most recently I've sent employees there for conferences and we paid $249 for round trip airfare, and $79 night for a GOOD hotel. This is very reasonable, compared to costs at other cities.

    Airfare: $250- $500 (Depending on your location)
    Lodging: $79 - $99 / night for 2 nights
    Conference Registration Fee: To be determined but perhaps $75, $100, or $150 ?

    The conference registration fee would cover: The cost and expense of renting a conference room at the hotel, the creation and transport of one or more "speed bag cage"(s) to the location, rental/transportation of audio equipment (maybe a live drum kit?) and stereo system for punch drumming, and probably some swag such as: autographed speed bags, autographed speed bag bible, autographed drum heads, shirts or hats, etc. for each participant. Maybe a raffle for a sponsor donated item (a really nice platform, etc.)

    NOTE: We may need to pursue corporate sponsorship to offset some of the costs. Several of us (Brian, Skunk, and myself) have multiple ideas of how to accomplish that.

    I should stress this would not be run as a for profit event. Any registration fees would be used for the equipment and facilities needed for the event, not for any one's personal gain.

    So I will ask, would you be interested in participating in an event such as that described above?

    I believe if we can get a reasonable commitment from a number of people we could commence serious planning. If the commitment is not as large as expected we could scale back the event (most likely by meeting at a gym with speed bag platforms, rather than having our own, minimal swag, etc.).

    And lastly, all of the above is a PROPOSAL I am open to ideas and input to make this successful!
    Last edited by Tim; 08-21-2009, 11:49 AM.

  • #2
    Tim! Brilliant idea! I would be there with bells on! It would be fun as hell being we all know each other already either in person, phone or online. It would great to meet. I would also love to learn a little something from all these awesome baggers who would attend. If I can walk out of there with a few more tricks up my sleeve and make some cool speed bagggin friends- that would be sick! Lets do it!

    Comment


    • #3
      Tim, as I mentioned in my PM, I'm all for this idea. I know it's been kicked around informally before, but this is great to see the idea finally taking shape. I am willing to do whatever you need to help make this event (no matter how big or small) become a reality.

      Let the planning begin.

      Comment


      • #4
        Tim, Maybe you considered this location, maybe not. But what about the Orlando area? I know you live nearby, and maybe you didn't suggest it because of that.

        Airfare is traditionally cheaper to Orlando, there are a gazillion places to stay and many things to do. Maybe some folks can schedule their family vacation around this event and they can bag and vacation at the same time. I know it's on the east coast and may prevent some folks from attending, but no matter what site is ultimately decided upon, distance will always be a factor.

        I hope others will chime in with suggestions. No matter where the host city is, let's see if we can get this iidea to fly.

        EDIT: Let's call this the first annual SpeedBagForum BAG-IN.
        Last edited by Biff; 08-21-2009, 03:54 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          yeah, can't say that doesn't sound like an awesome idea.

          Comment


          • #6
            Hey! I dig it... I've written many times about this exact thing...
            I will have my band Speed Bag Dragon together then and we'll drive and play ..maybe get some special guests.....
            Vegas is cool...
            Definitely...
            And I do not say this cuz I live there.... but in LA we can try to really get a Sylvester Stallone type and present him with a lifetime achievement Speed Bag award .... He and Alan Kahn can be the Guests of Honor. Getting a big name a town car to the event is cheaper than a first class flight!
            But who knows, it could all work in Vegas!
            Yeah!
            Gotta go to the show now.....
            BAG ON!

            Comment


            • #7
              I am all for Vegas or L.A. - im sure Vegas would be cheaper but maybe I can promote my movies in L.A. haha- Yes im from New Jersey but Atlantic City in the summer is very cool and cheap.- I'd rather have a great excuse to go to the west coast. Anywhere is cool with me! SBSH

              Comment


              • #8
                I've been dreaming about a bagger reunion for a LONG time. There are thousands of bagger fans all over the country, and for every one registered on the forum there are 50 that aren't. I've had tons of emails, and before email was king, letters centered around the speed bag bible, Along with a massive database of names and address of potential participants. Doctors, Lawyers, Bankers, designers, veterans, boxers, club owners, Police, Martial Artists, Radio hosts and Musicians of all genres. Checking my records I've had numerous contacts in he Vegas area, as well as went there to meet with one of the Downtorn Casino's about just such an idea. A friend of mine is a real live private detective there, and has a few contacts in the casino industries.

                It would take at least two or three major sponsors to cover the costs of room and meals ala banquet style down to. Several equipment sponsors might throw in a few freestanding frames. I would not suggest too many because of the noise factor. Maybe a few local boxing gyms or local exercise centers would want to participate, along wth a big name like a stallone or someone who is famous and hits the bag. For my part, Books and DVD's are no problem. Shirts hats etc. can be easily desinged as I had done one in Orlando. Vegas is a great location with things to do and lots of gyms etc. But so is Orlando Dallas or Kansas City, which is he home of both Ringside and titleboxing.Nothning like being jn their back yard

                Several of us could do teaching seminars of interest, :Punchdrumming, freestyling, teaching etc. we could anygthing we wanted. sponsor some training session for handicapped kids. you'd be surprised who might want to take part.

                So count me in. Be aware that a casino, convention center or hotel location want numbers. 25 is a key number and they may need at least that many for the first discount price break.
                Last edited by Speedbag; 09-01-2009, 06:32 PM.
                Speed Bag

                Put a little Rhythm in YOUR workout!
                *attendee: Every SB gathering so far!
                The Quest Continues...
                Onward to SpeedB.A.G. X! Summer 2019

                THE 10th Year Reunion!

                sigpic

                The Art of the Bag

                Comment


                • #9
                  Skunk will be there!!!!

                  OHHHH yeahhhh thats what im talking about. Doesnt matter where its at!! IM there!!! Along with probly 3 or 4 of my best students will be coming with me! Im going to send this to EVERLAST and see what they say. Hopefully we can get the ball moving so that by next summer we will be ready to BAG!!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    sent to everlast

                    Ill let you know there reply but KNOW that i sent him TIM's proposal. so They cant say i didnt let them know first! Hope to GOD that they get back to me with some awesome news!!!!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by SpeedBagSkunk View Post
                      Ill let you know there reply but KNOW that i sent him TIM's proposal. so They cant say i didnt let them know first! Hope to GOD that they get back to me with some awesome news!!!!!!
                      THANKS! Everlast has the connections and star power to make this dream a reality. Particularly with the Vegas location.
                      Speed Bag

                      Put a little Rhythm in YOUR workout!
                      *attendee: Every SB gathering so far!
                      The Quest Continues...
                      Onward to SpeedB.A.G. X! Summer 2019

                      THE 10th Year Reunion!

                      sigpic

                      The Art of the Bag

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SpeedBagScissorhands View Post
                        Tim! Brilliant idea! I would be there with bells on! It would be fun as hell being we all know each other already either in person, phone or online
                        Originally posted by Jordan View Post
                        yeah, can't say that doesn't sound like an awesome idea.
                        Originally posted by SpeedBagSkunk View Post
                        OHHHH yeahhhh thats what im talking about. Doesnt matter where its at!! IM there!!! Along with probly 3 or 4 of my best students will be coming with me! Im going to send this to EVERLAST and see what they say. Hopefully we can get the ball moving so that by next summer we will be ready to BAG!!!!
                        Glad to hear that you guys think it's a good idea. This is beyond exciting!!! I've been tormented by this idea for many months now, but it seems like it's now possible.

                        Originally posted by Biff View Post
                        Tim, Maybe you considered this location, maybe not. But what about the Orlando area? I know you live nearby, and maybe you didn't suggest it because of that.
                        Bingo, that would have seemed a bit selfish Plus Orlando is quite mundane for me (been here 5 years). Mostly though I'd like to spread some love to the west coast.

                        Airfare is traditionally cheaper to Orlando, there are a gazillion places to stay and many things to do. Maybe some folks can schedule their family vacation around this event and they can bag and vacation at the same time.
                        All good points. By all means my proposal was just that, to get real concrete conversations going.

                        We should consider the merits of various locations. Orlando is on the short list.

                        Originally posted by spinsmashpop View Post
                        Hey! I dig it... I've written many times about this exact thing...
                        I will have my band Speed Bag Dragon together then and we'll drive and play ..maybe get some special guests.....
                        Vegas is cool...
                        Definitely...
                        And I do not say this cuz I live there.... but in LA we can try to really get a Sylvester Stallone type and present him with a lifetime achievement Speed Bag award .... He and Alan Kahn can be the Guests of Honor. Getting a big name a town car to the event is cheaper than a first class flight!
                        I hear you... star power, west coast, proximity to a few of our key figures... I think LA should be on the "Short List"

                        Originally posted by Speedbag View Post
                        I've been dreaming about a bagger reunion for a LONG time.
                        Time to make it real. We've got to do this, not in 2013, 2012, or 2011. We've got to get this done in 2010. I don't care if it ends up being 5 of us or 50 of us in one location, it's a start.

                        It would take at least two or three major sponsors to cover the costs of room and meals ala banquet style down to.
                        We may have to consider several options. A "minimum" cost option is each person pays their own way, lodging, and meals (many places to eat where ever we end up). No catered food, no coffee & bagels (bring our own), etc. I hear those catered meals are a killer - $1,000 for coffee and bagels, etc. So I think that's out. Then we'd simply have to cover conference room rental and transport of the equipment there.

                        I really think it would be nice if we were all at the same hotel, but that may not be a necessity. Maybe we just rent a gym for those 2 days, and have them let us setup our speed bag cages. It could be that simple. But, I'd rather we dictate the hours, activities, etc. which I think we could do better in our own conference room.

                        Several equipent sponsors might throw in a few freestanding frames. I would not suggest too many because of the noise factor.
                        On the contrary, I think we make it priority to find a place that will accept the noise... I say the more bags the better! We tell them it's a fitness/equipment/musical expo of sorts and there will loud music and drumming, from 9am - 9pm. If that's not ok, their facility is out of the running... we can't risk being thrown out the day of if things are too loud, and believe me, they will be loud!

                        Maybe a few local boxing gyms or local exercise centers would want to participate, along wth a big name like a stallone or someone who is famous and hits the bag. For my part, Books and DVD's are no problem. Shirts hats etc. can be easily desinged as I had done one in Orlando.
                        There are many big name gyms in Vegas (Xtreme couture, etc.). It's the mecca of MMA. If we can't find a hotel that will take the noise, we can try to rent a gym (or portion thereof).

                        We definitely have to get to some rough cost estimates. I will be calling around to the CVBs (Convention & Visitors Bureaus) and various facilities of each respective Short Listed city.. trying to get an idea of how much we would need, then we can figure out how to cover it.

                        Vegas is a great location with things to do and lots of gyms etc. But so is Orlando Dallas or Kansas City, which is he home of both Ringside and titleboxing.Nothning like being jn their back yard
                        You bring up excellent points. I hadn't considered Kansas but that does make some sense. The only drawback I see is that it's not (generally) considered an exotic travel location, which might make it a harder sell for families.

                        I will add Dallas and Kansas City to the short list.

                        I do think it be a requirement that the city have a major airport, to simplify travel.

                        Several of us could do teaching seminars of interest, :Punchdrumming, freestyling, teaching etc. we could anygthing we wanted. sponsor some training session for handicapped kids. you'd be surprised who might want to take part. So count me in.
                        There will be no shortage of activities, I am sure of that

                        Be aware that a casino, convention center or hotel location want numbers. 25 is a key number and they may need at least that many for the first discount price break.
                        Yes, I will start investigating that immediately.
                        Last edited by Tim; 08-22-2009, 02:08 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Man, I don't care where it is........this is an awesome opportunity and I'm gonna start saving up!!!
                          sigpic

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Repeat on correct Thread. "Biff"

                            Now hold up for just a second. Before we get to far ahead of ourselves. We need to think.. I mean come on 8 bags at one time with 8 speedbaggers is going to sound like "Thunder or an Earth Quake" So attaching to any structure is WAY out of the question in my eyes. I have 8 platforms That are attached to a steal building and OMG it makes a awesome sound. BUT to anyone else they might be calling the fire department. So the question i have is HOW MANY BAGS do we need. 8 baggers at a time seems like a easy number but like Tim is saying making a speedbag cage that continues for 8 on each side would be Fin awesone. I think we need to find the place and then find out WHO is going to help us: EVERLAST, RingSide, Title, ect. If we make the budget too high lots of people wont be able to make it. Lets face it most of us just normal hard working people that LOVE to speedbag. I know im no Baller$$$ I dont mind helping with money by no means at all im just saying it will start to be a pretty penny if we get 16 speedbag platforms, all the wood we need to build, Stars, Airfare, Hotel, Food and Expences as well as a few other things. Thats why im thinking we need HELP!!!! So all of us need to shout out to sponsarships that will help us put this together. Im going to bust my ass to try and get everlast to help us with this. I talked to My guy at everlast when i came back from FOREINGER show and told him LOOK this speedbag thing is getting bigger and bigger day after day. I know rock stars that hit the bag, Superstars that hit the bag, Playmates that hit the bag and many others that tear it up. Theres gotta be some way we can put a RING in there bell to make them OPEN there eyes to see how big and succesful this could be.

                            Yall know my home town is SMALL!!! Lake City florida a speck on the map bout 1 hr from the jacksonville airport. I wouldnt charge nothing to use my facility. Even if we did a small event first to get the baggers there would be fine with me BUT i do believe in a BIGGEr CITY we would get much more exposure plus i dont know many stars that would come to lake shitty i mean city.

                            I do believe we all need to start making phone calls, sending e mails and reaching out to anyone and everyone we can to help put this AWESOME event together.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Man i would so be up for this!! unfortunately the trip across the pond would seriously dent my wallet!! it would be great to meet you guys and learn, hope it goes well, best wishes from one of the UK contingent.

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