CSC Bunkum #1 - Dates, Rates & Pre Season Work Party

4 March, 2021

Welcome to 2021, I hope you’ve had a great summer.  I can feel the seasons starting to change and we’re starting to think about the 2021 Winter season.

The Christie committee met for its pre-season planning meeting a couple of weeks ago and defined some important dates on the club calendar:

The 2021 pre-season Provisions Work Party will be held on Saturday & Sunday, April 10 & 11.  This work party is ideally suited for Junior members of all ages; we clean out the pantry, replenish it with the latest and greatest, stack a heap of fire wood, and generally prep the lodge for winter.  It would be great to see some of our newer families come and lend a hand and find out how the provisioning logistics work.  Plus it exempts you from the Work Party levy in your annual subs – a saving of $190 per senior member.  If you can attend this work party, or have any queries, please contact me at membership@skichristie.co.nz

  • Christiania Derby – Saturday, July 31 - the first of the interclub races and a big weekend at the lodge.
  • Men’s Few Days – Mon & Tues, August 2 & 3 
  • Christiania Club races – Saturday, October 2 
  • End of Season Work Party – Sat & Sun, November 20 & 21 
  • Mid-Winter Christmas, Juniors Weekend and Ladies Few Days dates will be confirmed shortly – please keep your eye on the club calendar.

There has been an increase to 2021 membership subscription rates, as agreed at last year’s AGM.  Annual subs for Seniors will be $190, Juniors remain at $50, with the work party levy (applicable to Seniors only) moving to $190.  Remember, your work party levy is waived if you participate in Work Parties or do some equivalent work for the club.  We’ve also reintroduced the Joining Fee for new members.

Accommodation rates will also rise slightly to $48 per night for Seniors and $32 for Juniors. Committee agreed these changes following extensive research and modelling by our Treasurer (thanks Kerry!), whereby Christie still provides outstanding value for money compared with similar clubs.  Associate and Guest rates have also changed – full details are here.  Also a new Tertiary Student membership class is being drafted, to be voted on at AGM (details will be shared soon).

We are currently looking at an alternative to our aging booking system so expect some changes on that front this year.  Dates for subs invoicing, opening of bookings etc will be communicated once we get some more clarity on the new system.  If you’re aware of any changes to your membership status, please let me know as soon as possible – it saves a lot of time and effort if changes are communicated before invoicing.

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CSC Bunkum #2 2021 - Pre Season Work Party POSTPONED, new mattresses

31 March, 2021

The Provisions Work Party that was to have been held on Sat/Sun, April 10 & 11, has been postponed to the following weekend, April 17 & 18.  This is due to a couple of factors – BidVest, our bulk food distributor, is unable to schedule a delivery to Whakapapa at that time, and we’re also unable to guarantee helicopter availability.

All members who expressed interest in attending the April 10 work party have been contacted and, thankfully, most are still available for April 17.  But there’s still space for more!  If you’re interested in attending, please let me know.

For newer members who may not have attended a work party before, the Provisions Work Party is well suited for junior members as we restock the pantry, stack firewood and generally prepare the lodge for winter.  Late season work parties usually have more heavy lifting and deep cleaning and maintenance tasks so are not as suitable for younger members. You can arrive Friday evening or Saturday morning, and we’re usually well out of there by Sunday lunch time.  There is, of course, no charge for accommodation for these days.  And remember, attending a work party exempts you from the Work Party levy in your annual subs – a saving of $190 per senior member.

You’ll be glad to hear that the club has purchased 14 new Sleepyhead hotel grade mattresses and protectors to replace our existing larger single mattresses.  I’m not sure if these will be in by April 17, but they’ll definitely be there by the start of the season.  Please note undocumented lodge rule #1 – Mum & Dad get first pick of the bunks!

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CSC Bunkum #3 2021 - Work Party - further postponement

22 April, 2021

Unsettled weather at the mountain over the last couple of weeks meant we were forced to postpone the Provisions Work Party for a second time.  We’re dependent on helicopters to transport bulk items to the lodge and the weather has meant they haven’t been flying.  In addition to the normal loads of food provisions and firewood, this year we also have 2 new stoves and 14 mattresses to get to the lodge.  We don’t have a revised date set yet and it’s now likely that the work party will run mid-week and on short notice.  I’ll communicate any further info as soon as it comes to hand.  Our thanks to all members who volunteered, and apologies for the uncertainty. 

Good progress is being made on the new lodge Booking System - this will be up and running for the 2021 season.  Your subscription invoices will be sent out in the week of May 10 and we’ll open the system for bookings in early June.  As in previous years we’ll be implementing a short priority booking period for members participating in regular mountain programs, and initially restricting school holiday stays to 4 nights.  More detailed information will follow closer to the time.

After the success of last year, Juniors Weekend is set to return on August 7 & 8.  For those out of the loop, this weekend is all about improving our junior members’ skiing with ski instructors organised, and making friends in the club with games-a-plenty in the evening for both kids and adults. This weekend booked up fast last year, so book early to get a spot.

Lots more info to come in the next few weeks!

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CSC Bunkum #4 2021 - Work Party is GO this weekend, May 1 & 2

27 April, 2021

It finally looks like settled weather is on its way to the mountain for the end of the week.  Helicopters are booked, food and firewood deliveries are scheduled.  We are GO to run the Provisions Work Party this weekend, Sat & Sun, May 1 & 2.

If you’re able and willing to make this work party, please let me know as soon as possible – we need to get an idea of numbers for catering purposes by the end of tomorrow. 

We could also do with a couple of extra bods on Thursday and/or Friday to assist with moving bulk items if anyone’s available.

Please let me know ASAP if you’re interested in attending - email membership@skichristie.co.nz

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CSC Bunkum #5  2021 - Membership invoices have been sent

14 May, 2021

Dear members and friends 

Subscription invoices have been sent to all members over the last few days.  If you have not received your invoice, please contact me as soon as possible.  Many thanks to members who have already made payments.  

We have a long list of members who are patiently waiting for a locker or ski rack to become available.  If you currently have access to a locker or ski rack, please ensure your subs are paid promptly to secure it for the 2021 season.

The new booking system will open in early June to members who have paid their full subscription.  Further details on the new system, and season restrictions, priority periods etc. will be communicated in the next couple of weeks.  Apologies in advance for the number of emails you'll receive - there's quite a bit of info to pass on.

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CSC Bunkum #6  2021 - Bookings open soon

19 May, 2021

It's almost time to kick off the 2021 season.   Here's some important information around the opening of the booking system in a couple of weeks.

Invoices for the 2021 season have been emailed to all members – if you have not received your invoice please let me know ASAP.  The booking system will open on either Tuesday June 1, for members who have priority booking rights (see No 1. below), or Friday June 4 for the rest of us.

We will be continuing the rules introduced in 2015 designed to encourage participation in official ski & board programs and club races, increase the number of members that can stay at the lodge over the school holidays, and improve the effectiveness of the booking system. To remind you of the rules:

1.  A brief priority booking period will be given to members who have an intention for at least one of their immediate family members to participate in a ski/board mountain program run by Mt Ruapehu (formerly RAL), or other providers.  Details of all Programmes run by Mt Ruapehu can be found here.  There are the Academy Weekend programmes for skiers and boarders, the Holiday Crew school holiday programme, competitive race coaching with lots of timing options, and various adult options for those of you who don’t want the kids to get away on you.  Too late for me I’m afraid …

The priority period also applies to:

  • members who are dedicated to representing Christie in the inter-club ski race series.  This requires that they race for Christie in Christiania Derby as well as at least two of the other three club races (see the calendar).
  • members booking in for Juniors weekend

To take advantage of the priority period:

  • Email me (membership@skichristie.co.nz) as soon as possible confirming who in your family will be participating in a 2021 program or Juniors Weekend, or the club races you are intending to compete in
  • Ensure your subscription invoice is paid promptly, well before June 1
  • On June 1 you will receive a password reset request from our booking system – this will be sent to the email address associated with your subs invoice – once you have set a password you can enter the system and make your bookings.

Please note, this isn’t about giving members on programs a constant booking advantage throughout the season – you only get a booking advantage for three days – then the priority booking opportunity falls away.

2. In both school holiday periods, bookings will be limited to blocks of 4 nights from the time bookings open in early June until June 19, a 2 week period.  After June 19 the restriction will be removed.  This will allow a greater number of families access to the lodge during these peak times. You must book for 4 nights – not more or LESS – you cannot just book for the weekend. The holiday periods are:

    July school holidays (the reference to dates below are the nights you will be staying):

  • Block 1: Friday 9 July to Monday 12 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Tuesday 13 July
  • Block 2: Tuesday 13 July to Friday 16 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Saturday 17 July
  • Block 3: Saturday 17 July to Tuesday 20 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Wednesday 21 July
  • Block 4: Wednesday 21 July to Saturday 24 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Sunday 25 July

    October school holidays (again, the reference is to nights):

  • Block 1: Friday 1 October to Monday 4 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Tuesday 5 October
  • Block 2: Tuesday 5 October to Friday 8 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Saturday 9 October
  • Block 3: Saturday 9 October to Tuesday 12 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Wednesday 13 October
  • Block 4: Wednesday 13 October to Saturday 16 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Sunday 17 October

Please remember, especially new members: When booking make sure that each stay of consecutive nights is made on a separate booking, i.e. has its own booking number. This will save enormous amounts of admin for our already busy Bookings Manager, Jenny Muir, if you want to change your booking.

YOU NOW NEED TO DO YOUR PART AND START TO PLAN:

  • Are family members going to participate in a mountain program?
  • Do you want to be at the lodge for a part of the school holidays?

If so, start thinking about your dates NOW!

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CSC Bunkum #7 2021 - we're open for business!

7 June 2021

The new lodge bookings system is up and running and open for business!  Logon details were sent to all paid up members on Friday.  If you have paid your subscription invoice but haven't received any details, please check your Junk, Spam, or Promotional folders - I've received a couple of reports of email from the new system going into these folders.  If you still can't find your details, please contact me asap.  Remember – if you haven't paid your subs, you can't make bookings!

We have a long list of members who are waiting for a locker or ski rack to become available.  If you currently have access to a locker or ski rack and have not yet paid your subs, you need to do so now to secure it for the 2021 season.

We sadly acknowledge the recent passing of one of Christiania's Life Members, Fred Houtman.  Our thanks for fellow Life Member, Norm Agnew, for the following tribute: 

Vale Fred (Frederik) Houtman
29.12.1934 – 02.05.2021

Christie club members family and friends mourn the passing of an ever enthusiastic foundation member, life member and past president.

Fred emigrated with his family to NZ from Holland when he was eighteen and soon took up a cadetship at the then State Hydro Department in Hamilton as an electrical draughting cadet.

His studies led him to become an electrical engineer and he moved on to work for a large electrical contracting firm Morgan Jenkins Electrical. His next move was to the Waikato Hospital where he stayed until retirement. He could not stay away though and spent many years on public information help desks at the hospital.

Fred was very active in the building of both Iwakau and Tukino lodges earning the nickname of 'Hotman' for his electrical prowess. Fred served and assisted in most committee roles over the years culminating in a term as President. Fred skied as he lived, correctly, precisely, considerately with feet together. Knees bent and back straight. He was often used as an example to children learning to ski - "Watch Mr Houtman. That's how you do it".

Fred was also involved for many years with the Hamilton Operatic Society in many productions as stagehand or Maître D' in front of the house. A rare true gentleman.

Fred is survived by his wife Diana, sons Geoff and Matt, daughter Susie and six grandchildren.

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