July 27, 2008
2nd Annual July Extravaganza
at Wawayanda State Park,
near Upper Greenwood Lake, NJ (07421) in Northern, NJ/ NY Border
I am pleased to announce our 2nd Annual July Extravaganza (anyone have a better name? Last year it was the August Extravaganza!). It’s a very involved event with something for almost anyone, so we expect a large amount of people. Please help us with this by reading these details carefully, and filling out the form below properly with all the information we ask for….
See below for the prices and details- deadlines are IN ADVANCE because we need extra time to organize all the people and activities. Help us help you – decide early!
PLEASE READ ALL INFORMATION BEFORE EMAILING US - THE ANSWER IS USUALLY BELOW!
EARLY BIRD DEADLINE IS Wednesday JULY 9
EVENT DEADLINE IS SUNDAY, JULY 20
GIVEN THE SIZE OF THIS EVENT,
PEOPLE WHO DO NOT REGISTER PROPERLY,
DO NOT MAIL IN DEPOSITS, OR SUPPLY ALL REQUIRED INFORMATION
WITHIN THE DEADLINES ABOVE WILL BE REJECTED.
We had to reject many people last year because people registered late or incompletely, and we still had about 50 people. This year we had over 100 for Memorial Day, and at some point I will close this out. It could be our biggest event ever! Register early, so you don’t get closed out!
Basically, the concept is to go to a really nice park in the area that has a variety of activities, and have people do a variety of things ( including nothing at all but hanging out), as well as a BBQ much of the day.
The park we are going to is Wawayanda State Park, in Northern NJ, near the border with NY. Its about a 75 minute drive from Manhattan.
The park has a beautiful lake ( pictured below), which is long and has several islands in it to explore. It’s a very special place, as you can see from the pix below—I visited several other parks before choosing this one, which has a large number of potential activities we can do. All of these pix below are within a 10 minute walk of each other, in fact!
Here is a link to some more pictures of the park
The park has the following possible activities, all of which are within walking distance of the picnic/BBQ area we will be at:
Hiking – several excellent long ( 7 mile) and short ( 2.5 mile to a nice pond) hikes that anyone can do. Last year we had kids on the short hike and we saw a BEAR!
Boating/Fishing – Canoes, row boats, electric motor boats & a very limited number of kayaks/double kayaks. The lake is stocked with Salmon.
Paved Biking/Rollerblading trails + Mountain Biking areas ( if you bring your own gear!)
Volleyball/Frisbee/Kites/radio controlled airplanes – anyone have a good volleyball set they can bring?
Playground with equipment – for young children
Beach – for relaxing, with a lifeguard for swimmers
IMPORTANT INFORMATION - PLEASE READ
Here is how things will work – this is a little complicated, so please read carefully, and help us
Leave by 8 am from Manhattan - You will need to leave about 8 am and get to the park by 9:30 AM. The park closes its doors to cars on busy summer days by 10am in the summer, so if you are late, you might not be able to get in, or have to walk 3 miles to the area we are congregating at… Last year some people missed out because the park closed. We will be in the park till about 6:30pm, which means you should get back after 8pm, though people may leave earlier.
Limited rides – minivan solution - Because of the large numbers I expect for this event, rides will be limited. Also, buses are not allowed into the park. What we will do is organize people into 15 passenger vans, hopefully from a few areas. The ride will cost about $25 to $35 per person, for gas and the rental. If you are willing to be a driver of one of the rental vehicles, you will also get a reduced rate to the event. We will try and send a list of drivers with phone numbers out in advance, but if you need a ride, assume you will have to go in one of the vans.
If we do sort some rides out for people, pay the driver $15 when you enter the car. They are doing you a favor, so please have the money available in cash.
Organized activities vs optional activities
There are some activities we will organize, others that you can do on your own with your own rentals or equipment, and then join us at the BBQ
We will help organize folks into the following activities—please indicate your choices on the form below
Long and short hike
Boating – canoes and very limited supply of kayaks ( ie 2 to 4? )
Volleyball/Frisbee/Kites ( anyone have any nice kites to bring?)
All of these activities leave from the same area, right next to the boating area.
Helping Out -
As at all of my events, we ask everyone to assist with things at the event. We are all in this together, so help when asked, volunteer to do things, clean up after yourself since we are not your maids, and things will go much quicker and smoother for everyone. Thanks in advance!
There will be two hikes – both will leave in the morning around 10 am, though we can run a second short hike in the afternoon if people want
This will be a 7.5 mile loop hike, taking about 5 hours. You will pass several lakes, a unique Cedar forest in a swamp ( traversed on planks!), surrounded by hemlocks and rhododendrons, a lake with a beaver house, and a lake with a dam. This is a 6 hike, with 10 being a very hard hike. It has about 600 feet of elevation, and is long!
This is a 3 mile easy hike, to a nearby pond, and some very pretty trees – possibly one of the few virgin hemlock tree pockets in this area of NJ. It has minimal elevation, and is suitable for all ages, including young children. Its more like a nature walk…we might have this more than once – let us know your preference below
Because of the limited supply of boats, we will organize 2 or 3 groups for 2 hours each on the lake, leaving at 10:30, 1 and 3:30 PM.
KASHRUT & BBQ DETAILS
The BBQ will run from about 3:00 till 6 PM, so people can come and go as they please catching a bite to eat between activities, or hang out at the BBQ, at their option. We will have plenty of food, for vegetarians, fruitarians (ever have grilled bananas? They are a house specialty), and omnivores. Let us know on the form below if you have a special diet.
All of the food at the event is from reputable hechshers. The meat is sourced from places like Brachs in Queens, Glatt Mart in Brooklyn, and other similarly reputable establishments.
The following are optional activities which you can do on your own
Swimming at the Beach
Biking/Rollerblading/Mountain Biking ( you need to bring your own equipment
Boating – any boats other than canoes or limited numbers of kayaks
If you want to swim, fish, bike/rollerblade, you will need to bring your own gear for this. You can also rent your own boats if you don’t want a canoe, such as paddle boats, electric motor boats and row boats. The prices are below for these optional boats, but its first come, first served at the boathouse.
What do I need to bring?
All - hat, suntan lotion, comfortable shoes, lunch
Long Hike – same as All plus 3 liters water, bug spray
Short Hike – same as All, plus 1 liter water
Boating - hat, suntan lotion, 1 liter water, and clothes and shoes that are ok getting wet, eyeglass retainer/cord to hold on glasses
Directions – will follow for those coming. Please advise if you plan to use GPS – that’s usually the only folks that get lost with my directions!
Leaving Times –
Manhattan, Northern & Central NJ – 8:00 AM
Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island – 7:30 AM
Teaneck, Monsey – 8:15 AM
In order to hold your place, please send deposits to me at:
209 Browning Avenue
Elizabeth, NJ 07208
If you prefer paypal for the deposit, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. PLEASE DO NOT USE PAYPAL TO PAY THE ENTIRE AMOUNT, JUST THE DEPOSIT. If you want to use paypal to pay the entire amount for the event, add $3 to your total, for the paypal fees.
The balance of monies you owe is due at the event. Please bring cash ( preferable) or checks made out to David Brotsky with you. When you arrive you will be registered and asked to pay for the event.
Extravaganza includes the BBQ (Lunch/Dinner – 1:30 to 6:00 PM), Hike, Volleyball/Frisbee –
Extravaganza with canoe/kayak – any other boats are items you can rent on your own at the park, first come, first served. Kayaks are limited ( we may have as few as 2 per session), so indicated below if you want a kayak and won’t boat if you don’t get one. Double kayaks are also limited and will only be rented if you have a friend/child for the boat. If you are a family who wants to go boating, please email me for a custom price – it depends on what you rent and how many kids are in your party.
Time of registration – calculated from when we receive your reservation on the RSVP form.
Early Bird Pricing – Tuesday June 17 to Wednesday July 9
Standard Pricing – Thursday, July 10 to Sunday, July 20
Because of the variety of events, I anticipate that this will be one of my largest, if not my largest event of all time. As such, several people are already helping me with this event. If you would like to help out and get $20 off, we might have spots for a few more folks for help the day of, so let me know via the form if you want to help out, and we will contact those folks we need for any extra help. We also need some help from folks to buy and transport some of the food, chiefly drinks since we will have more than a car load full just of drinks when we are done, so let us know if you can help with that in the questionnaire.