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CAP Talk  |  Cadet Programs  |  Cadet Programs Management & Activities  |  Topic: Cadet Ball
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Capmonkey
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Posts: 118

« on: August 06, 2018, 02:46:52 PM »

Hey, guys!
     My wing's conference is coming up soon (or at least the planning for it) and CAC has been asked to plan the Cadet Social. No big deal. We're thinking about holding a cadet ball, similar to a military ball. I was wondering if any of you have done this in the past, with what sucess you've had, tips, etc. My wing has never done one, but it has been proposed in the past. Any help would be appreciated.

Sincerely,
C/Maj Capmonkey
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Eclipse
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« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2018, 03:28:10 PM »

tips, etc.

Don't.
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Capmonkey
Forum Regular

Posts: 118

« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2018, 03:37:58 PM »

Is there any particular reason, sir? Trust me, I value your opinion greatly, I'm just curious, as I've heard of other wings doing this sort of thing. Any tips for a cadet social in general would be appreciated.

C/Maj Capmonkey
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TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2018, 03:40:37 PM »

tips, etc.

Don't.

Agreed. It's always far less exciting than planned.

Most Wings have conference during which have an awards banquet, or these may be things done in addition to a conference (such as a scheduled awards ceremony, and only that).

Dress-up events are, typically, planned with a series of speeches, special presentation/award, and guest speaker. And in most cases, the larger the event, the more people you don't know. 'Combat' dining ins can be more fun for cadets, but at the same time, you have that "I don't know you" factor.

Now, if you do intend to go with the ball idea, you'll need to have sign-ups so you can figure out food and seating accommodations. And, given the time of the event, considerations to overnight billeting.

I have just found in my experiences that formal affairs have a relatively low cadet turnout.
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Capmonkey
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Posts: 118

« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2018, 03:46:32 PM »

Thanks for the advice. This idea came from some of the wing higher-ups, and I'd like to make it happen. Our conference has an awards banquet already, we were just looking for different ideas for the Cadet Social. As for the larger events, I personally like the idea of "not knowing people", because it forces you to engage with your peers. Planning hasn't yet started for the Conference and the Cadet Social, I was just trying to gather some ideas. Please don't take this as me getting into an argument with either of you. Just trying to be a respectful cadet.


C/Maj Capmonkey
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TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2018, 03:49:41 PM »

Thanks for the advice. This idea came from some of the wing higher-ups, and I'd like to make it happen. Our conference has an awards banquet already, we were just looking for different ideas for the Cadet Social. As for the larger events, I personally like the idea of "not knowing people", because it forces you to engage with your peers. Planning hasn't yet started for the Conference and the Cadet Social, I was just trying to gather some ideas. Please don't take this as me getting into an argument with either of you. Just trying to be a respectful cadet.


C/Maj Capmonkey

Quote
I personally like the idea of "not knowing people", because it forces you to engage with your peers.

Or it results in people who don't know each other staring at one another all night and not enjoying themselves. Forcing friendships is not generally a good idea. Those things develop over time; they aren't forced.

Maybe try polling the cadets in your Wing to get ideas. Be cautious about telling others what will be fun when they haven't provided input. If Wing highers are pushing it, it's a sign that they think it would be fun and didn't talk to the lower echelons.

Quote
Just trying to be a respectful cadet.

No worries. I don't see it as an argument. It's a dialogue.
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Luis R. Ramos
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« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2018, 03:50:40 PM »

Did you try asking your Wing's CAC?
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Capmonkey
Forum Regular

Posts: 118

« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2018, 03:54:34 PM »

I'm the incoming WCAC Chairman, sir. This idea is going to be proposed at the start of the new term. I'm just trying to get as much background information as possible.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2018, 04:08:16 PM »

Is there any particular reason, sir? Trust me, I value your opinion greatly, I'm just curious,

Expense.
Lack of interest.
General lack of cadet participation at Conferences.
Supervision issues
CAP is not a dating service.

Any tips for a cadet social in general would be appreciated.

Again, steer clear and find a more appropriate way to spend the evening that doesn't involve
uniforms a lot of cadets don't own, an expensive rubber chicken dinner, and awkward / unnecessary
peer pressure.

Consider who you are going to "social" with - these are cadets who are already at the
conference, so a party at the pool, or pizza and an appropriate movie in a conference
room would probably be more appreciated then a "ball, dance, or dining out".

ProTip - anything that includes the word "grog" is 100% inappropriate for CAP, especially for cadets.

as I've heard of other wings doing this sort of thing.

Wings do things that aren't a good idea all the time.

For every cadet "ball" or "social" that was a success, there's probably at least one that went sideways
in spectacular, unintended ways.

I'm 100% on the page that few cadets want to or should have their participation at
a wing conference "rewarded" with the snoozefest of the average Wing banquet -
inappropriate, unconnected speakers who don't know anything about CAP, and / or who were
culled at the last minute because they were handy to the local zip code, coupled with
3 hours of certificates for every Assistant to the Director of Assistant Directors, accompanied
by a meal which is generally legally classified as food for human consumption, but only with the
most benevolent eye.

But with that said, a separate cadet activity requires additional planning and supervision, with
most anyone interested in being at the Ramada Inn that day already committed to the conference as a whole,
resulting in inadequate or inappropriate supervision, which leads us back to Doh!
« Last Edit: August 06, 2018, 07:43:12 PM by Eclipse » Logged


NIN
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« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2018, 06:06:44 PM »

CAC doesn't stand for "Cadet Activities Committee."

That should cover that. More later
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Darin Ninness, Lt Col, CAP
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Eclipse
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« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2018, 06:27:03 PM »

CAC doesn't stand for "Cadet Activities Committee."

+1 - don't understand why wings get this so wrong, so often.
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Capmonkey
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« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2018, 07:50:21 PM »

I understand this. In a respectful manner though, who better to plan a CADET social than a group of CADETS?
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NIN
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« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2018, 07:57:37 PM »

That's fine.  But that's not the mission or purpose of the CAC.

Who better to paint the side of a ship than a bunch of swabbies, right? Except when they're all SEALs.

CAC has a very specific mission and function in the hierarchy of CAP.

And when  the CAC veers off into activity planning, they're shortchanging the cadets of their unit from the representation that mission and function allows.  Robbing them of a long term "position of trust with the ear of the commander" for a night of bow ties or a weekend of boonie  hats.
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Darin Ninness, Lt Col, CAP
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I like to have Difficult Adult Conversations™
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Luis R. Ramos
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« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2018, 08:00:08 PM »

Quote

CAC doesn't stand for "Cadet Activities Committee."

Why the reminder? Don't you think that those here would not know??? Is it wrong for anyone to consult cadets on any type of activity?




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TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2018, 08:39:06 PM »

Quote

CAC doesn't stand for "Cadet Activities Committee."

Why the reminder? Don't you think that those here would not know??? Is it wrong for anyone to consult cadets on any type of activity?

It's not wrong to consult cadets on an activity.

It's wrong to take a cadet in a duty position that isn't there to plan out activities and expect them to plan out activities. That's not part of the assignment.

That's like taking a college intern and making them sort files and keep the coffee pots filled. That's not what they're there for.
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Capmonkey
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Posts: 118

« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2018, 10:05:09 PM »

Yes, it's not a duty assignment of the CAC. However, would you have Senior Members plan a cadet social? In this case, maybe so. However, we as CAC are an advisory board. We can plan the Social and suggest and ADVISE to the Senior members, in the form of the CAC Advisor and DCP, of what CADETS want, since it is a CADET social, not a senior. If you want to plan a CADET social, have cadets plan it.


C/Maj Capmonkey
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etodd
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« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2018, 10:12:00 PM »

Our Wing Conference always has a "dance" with a live band after the formal dinner and presentations. But its everyone, Cadets and Seniors combined. Which usually means that most Cadets who attend, have senior member parents attending, and staying at the hotel/conference center.


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lordmonar
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« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2018, 02:39:21 AM »

I understand this. In a respectful manner though, who better to plan a CADET social than a group of CADETS?
I don't know....maybe people who know how to plan a social in the first place.   Someone who knows about booking a venue, arranging catering, booking a speaker, DJ/band, etc etc etal.

Sorry to rain on your parade....but NHQ CP has been trying for years and years to break the idea that CAC is supposed to plan and execute Cadet Activities.   It's not.  That is in fact the job of the wing's Director of Cadet Programs and his/her staff....which may include senior cadets by they way.   

You are correct.   Having cadets HELP plan the Cadet Social Activity is a good idea.   Tasking the Cadet Advisory Council is not.   Just like have Ground Team Leaders HELP plan the wing wide SAREX is a good idea.....have Ground TEAM One plan it is not.    The CAC is supposed to do one job and planning social events is not it.

Having said that.

Here is the link to the USAF guidance on dining outs......should give you some ideas of how big of a project this is going to be.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=6&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwjh15_ZqdrcAhVHilQKHZGIDbAQFjAFegQIBRAC&url=http%3A%2F%2Fstatic.e-publishing.af.mil%2Fproduction%2F1%2Faf_sg%2Fpublication%2Fafi41-210%2Fafi41-210.pdf&usg=AOvVaw3mjP1QzYvYrtoZAlqnbjcZ

Good luck.

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PATRICK M. HARRIS, SMSgt, CAP
Pacific Region
NIN
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« Reply #18 on: August 07, 2018, 08:57:31 AM »

Earlier I said "More later."  It is now later.

I get when people say "We're not the military, we don't need dining outs." I don't agree with it, but I get it.

I sort of "grew up" on "dining outs" in Michigan Wing in the 1980s.  Every conference had one. Every one. Wing Conferences or Cadet Conferences, we had a dining out (well, the Cadet Conference's dining out was styled as a "Military Ball" every year. A little different. "Nerd Prom," if you will).

And yes, they were complete with a grog bowl. (and no, the grog was not disgusting or nasty, it was just punch. For your transgressions of the mess rules, two fingers of grog sir!)

The dining outs did tend to be a little long, but the thing about the dining out was: it wasn't the "same old same old" banquet with rubber chicken and a succession of guest speakers who each talk 20 minutes longer than he should. 

There were rules of the mess and they were different from the everyday rules of eating which made it "something out of the ordinary."  (which, when you think of it, is what CAP is: something out of the ordinary)   Colonel Sheibels would sing for his dinner, a MI/Great Lakes tradition, and we *always* had a great time. ALWAYS.  Lots of laughter, lots of fun, good shenanigans and stories.  I looked forward to dining outs as a cadet.  I think many of us took it as "Why have a 'mess dress'-type uniform if you're not going to have a 'mess,' right?"

So, you can put me down in the "dining out" column rather than "banquet" column.



True story: (you knew a WIWAC story was coming)

Wing Conference, I think circa 1985, Lansing, Michigan. My squadron commander and mentor Maj Ron Padavan is Mr. Vice, and his brother-in-law Lt Col Glenn Overby is the President of the Mess. The Lieutenant Governor of Michigan, Martha Griffiths, is our guest speaker.

Ron gets nabbed for a violation of the mess rules or protocol or something, and the President suggests that he should atone for it with a trip to the grog bowl.  Rather than leaving his post unmanned, he appoints this rather erstwhile Cadet Major named Ninness as "Vice President Pro-Tem of the Mess." 

I scoot up to Mr Vice's chair as a point of order is made. I recognize the speaker and he proceeds to note that the President of the Mess himself violated the rules, which the President immediately owns up to. Rather than leaving his post similarly unmanned, Lt Col Overby appoints me as the "President Pro-Tem of the Mess" during his absence. Knowing that protocol is protocol, I appoint my buddy, C/Capt Jake Naeyert, as the "Vice President Pro-Tem, Pro-Tem of the Mess" (to much laughter and spoon tapping by the cadets present) and abscond to the dais to assume my temporary temporary office whilst the President and Vice are engaged. 

(Note: This all went much quicker than I'm describing it, and we were really thinking on our feet here.) 

I get up there behind the podium, and man, there's like 300+ people in this room, bright lights, the Lieutenant Governor is to my right, and everybody is looking right at me! (I was not nearly so comfortable in front of groups then as I am now)

Quite frankly, I'm a little stunned that I'm up in front of everybody. I'm thinking "OK, Ninness, just keep it together for another minute or two until the President and Vice get back to their posts and you can sit down and get out of the spotlight.. just keep breathing..." when one of our RAP Officers, a USAFR Lt Col sitting at one of the front tables, leaps to his feet and shouts "MR PRESIDENT! A POINT OF ORDER!"

(that's not how its done: a point of order in the mess is made to Mr. Vice, never directly to the President of the Mess. Its right there in the rules!)
 
I'm like a deer in the headlights: Oh, crap. Now what do I do?

I peer over at Jake who is looking at me like "Handle it, buddy, you're the boss." I look over at the Lt Governor and she looks at me and mouths the words "Nail him!"

"Ah, sir, its against the rules to address the President directly to make a point of order.  Would you please avail yourself of the Bowl of Social Grace, sir?"

Every cadet in the place I swear started cheering (well, OK, 33 years later thats the way I picture it. Let a dude dream a little, OK?) and tapping their spoons on the table as this Lt Col realizes his mistake and cheerfully makes for the back of the room to serve his penance.

The Lt Governor patted my arm and said "Nice work!"

The President and Vice very quickly thereafter resumed their roles and the dinner continued, but man, that was a fun time.



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Darin Ninness, Lt Col, CAP
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The contents of this post are Copyright © 2007-2018 by NIN. All rights are reserved. Specific permission is given to quote this post here on CAP-Talk only.
Paul Creed III
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Unit: GLR-OH-254

« Reply #19 on: August 07, 2018, 09:20:58 AM »


ProTip - anything that includes the word "grog" is 100% inappropriate for CAP, especially for cadets.


This +1. In my book, this is hazing plain and simple. Making a cadet (or a senior member for that matter) drink some disgusting concoction for some "infraction" deemed by others, all in the name of "fun", is hazing. Even if it appears that the person is going along with it, it is peer pressure for something that serves no purpose in a youth organization at all.
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Lt Col Paul Creed III, CAP
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CAP Talk  |  Cadet Programs  |  Cadet Programs Management & Activities  |  Topic: Cadet Ball
 


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