WHAT'S GOING ON THIS SEASON! .
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So you've got some difficult names to buy a gift for or you're the difficult one on someone else's list, we've got the answer! Gift Certificates for sailing classes make unusual tokens of one's affection or appreciation. Certificates in any denomination or combination of classes are available year-round. Let us make your occasion memorable for a life time. Show a special someone how much you care or tell them what would make your day! Sailing Gift Certificates are the smartest most unique exchange of appreciation between loved ones or friends.
Sailing outings will be $65, but "Early Bird Discounts" will be $59, so if you can plan 8 weeks in advance you can continue to sail at roughly the same price as last season. Ground school classes will be $179, but "Early Bird Discounts" will be $159, so if you can book 4 weeks in advance you can pay the same price as last season. Compared to other "Recreational Alternatives" this still represents a huge value! When considering that all of our boats are in excellent condition, come with a complete crew and a highly experienced certified instructor, these prices are still much less expensive than renting or owning your own boat. Plus, you just can't beat the great company that our other students provide. In a time when most students don't even know anyone else to join them in sailing on a regular basis, our weekly outings provide an attractive way to enjoy the sport of sailing all year long without ever having to scrub a boat or varnish any teak!
Been To A Good
Boat Show Lately?
Mark your calendars for the Jan 12th - 16th Atlanta Boat Show at the Georgia World Congress Center. Windsong will be in booth #253 again (Just to the right of the center concession stand) this year with some unannounced specials and great trips planned offshore this season. We can't say too much in advance, least we tip our hand to others who "try" to compete with Windsong, but Saturday the 15th you're going to want to be at the show for a series of programs you're not going to believe! We're going to have some Las Vegas action going on at the booth and some of the finest speaker presentations the Atlanta show has EVER seen. There will be something for everybody at the first annual "Windsong Speaker's Forum", a revolutionary new offering for the Atlanta Boat Show convention.
“The World Is My Play Ground Too; Women Under
“Family Sailing, Kids in Tow”
“Just My Son and I; Sailing”
“I Can’t Stop Dancing; An Annual Black Boater’s
speaker sessions will be conducted in the "Seminar" room to the
far right end of the exhibition hall. There should be a large RED lettered banner over
the entrance doors to the area.
2005 Calendar of Outings Posted
For those who prefer to beat the heat in July and August we're offering a 10 am "Early Bird Sail" outing if you want to get off the lake before the hottest times of the day. On the same days we offer a 6-8pm "Late Sail" for those who enjoy the calm of the lake after all the weekend boaters have gone home. This was a suggestion by one of our students during our annual "Opinions Survey" that some of you were asked to participate in. If you haven't returned your survey, you're missing your chance to tell us what new offerings you want to see for the new year.
Additionally you can click from the calendar to view each course description and then click the "Back" button to return to the calendar you were viewing. We've begun an effort to revamp the web so you may notice some differences as we move into the year. It is hoped that online web registration for classes will become available shortly. This will be a huge value to our customers, but it won't be rolled out until we become absolutely sure that it can be secured with your personal id and password.
New Course Offerings: If you've ever wondered what regatta racing is all about join us for a two night Racing Clinic covering the rules of racing as well as the selection considerations for a club, boat, equipment, crew and events. Topics will also include the steps of crew orientation and development in addition to suggested practice drills and a discussion of the skipper's meetings prior to the race. We've added two new programs this season. Engine Maintenance covers those pesky seasonal issues with both gasoline and diesel engines including outboards. Basic troubleshooting of fuel, cooling, electrical and seasonal maintenance issues will also be discussed. Students will get to actually replace an impellor and bleed a fuel system. Also 12 Volt Systems has been added this season to cover basic troubleshooting as well as proper installation of that new gadget on your boat. A discussion of charging systems and battery selection should prove to make this a popular seminar this season.
Early Bird Savings! Price increases are a way of life as our operational costs for insurance and facilities go up with each new season, but when you register early for ground school classes and outings you can save! The new ground school prices are now $189, but if you register 4 weeks in advance an "Early Bird" $159 price will be available. Outings are now $69 per 2-hr class but when you book 8 weeks in advance an "Early Bird" price of $59 price will be available. Obviously Early Booking ensures a more efficient utilization of our resources and your sailing dollars. Either way the quality and effectiveness of our programs is always a great value. Just ask a fellow student and you'll understand why.
cat is out of the bag! We have posted the Sunset Sail
fun social outings have been extremely popular in past years and we look
forward to sharing them with students again this season. They are
purely social and non instructional in nature. Grab that
"special significant other" and share the delights of a casual
sail down Lake Lanier on selected evenings (See the "Outings"
web page). Grab some jeans, shorts, or dress up, but importantly
grab your space today!! These outings always go fast because they are
attractively priced at $65
for a 3-hr outing, making it the best value
of any of our outings! Light snacks and soft drinks will be
provided. Bring a jacket to because it can get cool at sunset.
It's That Time Of Year Again!
If you need a membership form, let us know and we'll drop you in the mail to you.
I Love My Job,
I love my job and the potential for a significant impact on the quality of lives and relationships of our customers. Okay, let's be fair, even the perfect job has it's moments. I love everything about my job except explaining and enforcing our "Late Cancellation Policy". Fortunately only about a dozen times per year does the issue arise when someone for unexpected reasons is unable to attend a sailing outing for which they have registered. I call that "Life". As a business owner it is my responsibility to the share holders to meet expenses and ideally make a profit. Even a great product or service is not a bargain if the business won't be around in the future to meet subsequent needs. Anyone with any business experience knows this. When the Atlanta Braves caused the new stadium to be built, someone in the front office had to deal with a cancellation policy. When Delta airlines prices their tickets, they must deal with it too. When the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra prices their Christmas performances they must set a price that permits a profit at less than full capacity. When the ice skating "Tour of Champions" came to town they had to set a price too. At Windsong we too have to ensure a fair and competitive price that ensures profitability. There are a number of ways each business can do that. In nearly all cases, businesses either don't permit cancellations, PERIOD, or they just add a premium to all the other ticket prices to create a "Slush Fund" to ensure profitability "in the event" of cancellations. This makes sense if your business has a lot of cancellations. If they are fairly infrequent, there's going to be unnecessary costs to everyone to fund an event that seldom occurs. There's not magic math here! Prices reflect policies. At Windsong we strive to offer affordable Prices with the highest Quality and extremely responsive Customer Service. If you dispute any of these I'd personally like to hear your story!
As a consumer I hate it when I buy tickets to an event that I later can't attend. There are usually reasons, some unavoidable, yet admittedly some cancellations are a matter of convenience and not total necessity. Some are because I didn't plan appropriately or someone else was in control of my calendar and it was necessary to resolve a conflict. The issue here is that the reason for the cancellation isn't relevant. As a consumer, I intellectualize that there were probably two options. Overcharge me for tickets all year long so that I could cancel when needed or lower prices and offer NO REFUNDS. With a very liberal cancellation policy, I certainly could envision room for abuse and potentially even high prices as a result. Ideally a policy might offer cancellation up to a reasonable period before the event to permit the vendor to attempt to replace me so that the seat doesn't go empty on the day of the performance. That sounds like a fair compromise to me, but I understand that if the seat goes unoccupied somebody's going to be paying. There's no magic math! When you can't pay your bills certainly some reasons sound more acceptable than others, but our creditors are only interested in one thing; your payment, not your reason. The bottom line is that the operational costs must be covered and when they're not, reasons don't eliminate the issue. The perception is that Windsong is profitable and that we should absorb the costs whenever a customer cancels. We could do that if we planned our business model and pricing to accomplish that. The fact is that we chose not to in order to offer the lowest price and best value to the majority of our customers. To do otherwise would unfairly punish the majority through higher prices, higher prices that even those who occasionally had to cancel would be overpaying all year long for the rare instances where late cancellations caused a seat to go empty on a boat at the last minute.
Presently the outing cancellation deadline is 4 days prior to the outing. Having the deadline 4 days out, we have the opportunity to try to fill any remaining holes by Friday before being forced to call the remaining students on that same outing with the bad news of their outing not "Making". So next time you go sailing and notice that the boat is not full. Understand that your outing was made possible that day due to our cancellation policy. Otherwise through no fault of your own, you could have arrived at the dock prepared to sail that day and be told that your outing was cancelled 15 minutes ago because someone woke up sick and can't attend. If anyone has ideas for a better policy I want to personally discuss it.
Back to my premise at the beginning of this discussion. Our cancellation policy is not about making money. It's about fairness to everyone; customers, creditors and share holders. So why take so much space in our Holiday Newsletter Issue to discuss a business policy. Ask yourself how many other businesses that you buy from would really care that much. I think you'll then understand a bit more about why Windsong is so unique. We do really care about our impact and the fairness to others. As I'm sure many of you already know. Life isn't only about "Me". We stretch the rules in everyway that we can to help others, but if we don't cover our costs, we won't be there tomorrow to meet your future needs. (:>).
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THE HOLIDAYS ARE
COMING....AND I HAVE NO IDEAS!
Remember, friends don't let their friends drive.
Sailing is a whole lot safer and satisfying!
Let Windsong solve your problems. Tell everyone to buy you sailing gift certificates for Christmas. Annually Windsong offers gift certificates year round in any denomination or for any combination of classes our outings. Let us know what you desire and we'll gladly ship you a gift certificate for that "Difficult To Buy For" person on your shopping list. If you think that might be "YOU", make the job easier for others and have them give us a call! This also is a great way to encourage a friend or that special someone to take the plunge and go sailing with you!
Remember, friends don't let their friends drive. Sailing is a whole lot safer and satisfying!
Friends don't let
their friends go through life
Invite someone to join you today!
OUT AND TOUCH US,
Many times students' suggestions are implemented on the spot! We pride ourselves in our customer service and attention to the needs of our students. If you have thoughts or ideas, drop us a line or give us a call. All things are possible; you simply need to ask.
I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all our students for their loyal support through the season(s) and encourage everyone to bring one new friend along each year as you sail. As we grow and expand our operation, we want to make our products and services available to all who may be interested, but some one has to make the introduction. Share the love of your sport with those who may be interested in our unique collection of programs. You'll be glad you did and so will they!