Wednesday, April 16, 2008

SIGNIFICANT national camp change

Dear all,

the NZKF executive, in consultation with the Rembuden leaders, has decided to make a significant change to this year's calendar. The National Camp will be moved to 12/13 JULY and will be held in AUCKLAND. This will also mean that the AGM will be on the same weekend. Please see the message below from Graham for an explanation:

I have been speaking to Inouye Sensei on and off for the last 5 months , including two face to face meetings with him . I was , along with many other NZKF members, sad to think that 2007 might have been the Sensei's last trip to NZ.

In the last few weeks the Sensei has agreed to making another trip , part of the deal is Auckland-based, as we would like him (as our Patron/ shihan) to officially open the new super duper whizz bang dojo for us.

The Sensei has asked that the event be in Mid July so that he can bring with him a "good" group of other Sensei . The costs of airfares out of Japan are about half in July compared with August .

Inouye Sensei has now a confirmed 4 x 7th dans plus himself. In the wings waiting for more detail are 2 more 8th dans and 4 more 7th dans . We cant promise yet but it looks like this could be the most powerful delegation we have ever had . One of my targets is to have enough grading power to grade to 5th dan (a first for NZ).


Keeping the costs down domestically (airfares for sensei to other parts of NZ etc) has also been a big consideration for the NZKF.

The decision to bring the August camp forward to mid July and change venues from Wellington to Auckland was not taken lightly by the executive and national coaches but considering the overwhelming benefits to be had for NZKF members the event is now going to happen.

I hope all NZKF members will consider attending what is going to be a fantastic celebration of Kendo.


Graham

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So what it comes down to is that this change makes a huge group of high level sensei available in NZ. Inoue sensei's age and the added cost of flying make it very hard for the group to travel down to Wellington. The time has to be changed in order to make the flights from Japan affordable.

We (the Exec + Martin and Sachiyo as the original camp hosts and national coaches) considered many alternatives such as combining the National Camp with the National Champs in order to make attendance easier. However, for several reasons the other options were ruled out.

We recognise that this is a large change to the calendar but there are almost 3 months before the new date, so we hope that clubs will be able to adjust.

We also recognise that this will make attendance more difficult for some clubs (though easier for others). However, we felt that the impressive group of sensei made the change worth while despite this problem.

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On a related note, it has become obvious that there are problems with the calendar at present. Therefore, I will be putting together some points for discussion so that we can vote on some clear changes at the AGM in July. The obvious areas to be covered are:

- the number of events.
- the content of each event.
- the timing of events.
- the procedures for deciding on hosts and the procedures for changing hosts.

There has been valid criticism of each of these points. Although we cannot please everyone, it is probably still time to reconsider the system now that we have some practical experience to reflect on. I will be in touch shortly with some points to start the discussion and I look forward to your thoughts and comments.

As always, if you have any questions or comments please let me know.

Regards,

Walter McCahon
Secretary
NZKF
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