It's amazing how many meteorologists we have at E@RTC this season who possess the magic phone that does a better job than NOAA and all the other pros! We're stunned and amazed! We've written before about the accuracy of NOAA and we try and have fun with it, but it's always the same kids and rookies complaining again and again. Never mind the advanced degrees and cool gadgets the real guys have or how many concur with their conclusions who also have cool stuff. Somehow these kids know better and we should trust them. Nope, not going to happen. These kids always seem to know what's best for everyone at E@RTC anyway. But do they volunteer to help? Naaaah! That would mean actually doing something.
Do we sound a teeny bit cranky about this? You bet! We put up with it at the beginning of each season and it's always kids and newbies and those who think this is all about them who email us to complain about the weather mistakes someone else makes. Again, please call NOAA, NWS, Weather Underground, weather dot com, KING, KIRO, KCPQ, KOMO, the cows in the field, the guy under the porch, and send back the Magic 8 Ball to express your deep dissatisfaction with the forecast. Not us.
We all get tired of the peanut gallery on this. I'm not going to rehash our history and the weather here because we've tried just about everything and are confident in our routine for the highest level of satisfaction possible or no money back. We can always tells the rookies and kids from the adults because they are the ones who complain the most as if our volunteers should be at the snap of their fingers and show up, should NOAA and the others get it wrong.
For those who wish to learn about us and how we think about this, keep reading.
E@RTC requires a lot of volunteers to put this event on each Saturday. It also requires RTC to staff up. These volunteers give up their early Saturday mornings to come out and help us put on a fantastic show and the season-long commitment is not trivial. We have equipment to move, lots to organize and it's a lot of behind the scenes work. (Notice those who complain the most don't lift a finger to help?) The *ONLY* time our volunteers get a Saturday off all season is when we're rained out. Sure each may take one or two Saturdays off, but they make a huge commitment to be there for you and we don't abuse it. (We actually consider others in what we do.) We need continuity of our volunteers and it's not easy and they deserve a lot of thanks.
We rely on NOAA, as we've said in other posts. We read what's called the National Weather Service Scientific Forecast Discussion and we check every source there is, but the NWS is continually the most reliable and the foundation that the others use in their forecast modeling. If the chance of rain is 30% or higher on the late Thursday afternoon before the event, we call it off so people can make other plans. The volunteers can go do something else and actually plan their weekend, RTC can release staff and not move benches, tables, etc.
Some participants and spectators have hotel reservations to cancel, some have complex logistics to get out of the way, including trailers, cars to move in their collections, and none of it is easy to coordinate. Some of these kids who complain have no idea how much work goes on behind the scenes because they are just spectators and don't have the logistics outside of crawling out of mom's basement. Some newbie in an old Ferrari trying to impress us, doesn't at all. It's just the opposite.
We also have to coordinate with Redmond Town Center and they too have costs in all this. So the less we're sending them running around on high probability of rainy days, the better we're all off. We still manage the get the same number of events in each seasons, somewhere between 20 and 21, year after, and it doesn't matter if we start in February or May. It rains about the same number of Saturdays. It's why we stopped beginning our season that early. It was damn cold too.
What makes our event so much fun is big turnout. Low turnout burns up volunteer time, money, etc., and people don't like to hang around where there are few spectators to participate in the show. It's not the best way to have our opening day when we get so many really special cars. We don't want to risk opening day on a low turnout either.
We want a big show and we'll get one when the weather is better. There is a small pocket of rain right over my house as I write this... Bottom line is please be patient with us, there is far more to this event than just you.