A Message from the Chair

For those of you I haven’t met (yet), allow me to introduce myself. I’m Dave Pawson, and I’ll be your chairman of the board for the next year. This is sincerely an honor for me, and makes for very exciting times. But as exciting as this is for me, there are a lot of things going on these days that should keep life interesting and exciting for our members as well. I intend to post here regularly to keep you all appraised of IJA goings-on, but in particular I wanted to introduce myself and shine a spotlight on some big happenings in the IJA these days.

For those of you who missed the Winston-Salem festival, it was truly a blast. Ask anyone who was there, and they’ll likely agree. Kudos to festmeister Matt Hall, who did a masterful job keeping us all entertained for the week. In the midst of all the games, workshops, competitions, shows, and camaraderie, we did conduct some business, and at our general membership business meeting, we made a few announcements that I think will be of interest to a great many of you.

It was a difficult decision for us to stop production of a print magazine. We’re very excited about how well eJuggle has stepped in to fill that void; we’re producing more content than ever, in multiple languages, and many types of content that were never available to us before in a printed medium. But at the same time we were keenly aware that our members wanted more for their membership dollar. We put a lot of thought into this problem, and we’re finally ready to announce some significant changes that should paint a rosier picture for our loyal members who have stuck with us, our previous members who may have wandered away while we figured this out, and our potential new members who have been watching curiously from the sidelines.

First, the easy one. In June, the board approved a change to our membership prices. If you want to improve the cost/benefit proposition for the IJA, there aren’t many more straightforward ways to do so than to lower the cost. As of August 1st, IJA membership prices will change as follows:

  • The adult annual membership price will drop from $40 to $29
  • The youth annual membership price will drop from $31 to $24
  • Lifetime membership will drop from $1500 to $1250
  • Pricing for additional family members will remain constant at $5

Compensation will be given to members who purchased multiple year membership in advance. If you are interested in those details, read the fine print at the end of this article…

Second, we announced the return of a vendor discount program for our members. Details will follow and be posted here in the near future, but what this means is that our members will receive discounts on orders from a list of participating vendors. At this time, that list includes:

Keep an eye out here for specifics on what discounts are being offered, and how you can take advantage of them.

And last, but certainly not least… If you didn’t already see the announcement here, Wes Peden has produced a new video entitled “HEPTAD”. Yes, that Wes Peden. The Wes Peden. This video will be released on August 7th, and will be released here on eJuggle as IJA Members Only Content! The release of a new Wes Peden video is usually cause for quite a stir in the juggling community. We’re elated that Wes has chosen to support our organization by providing us with this exclusive video, to share with you, our members. We know that some of you have had trouble logging in here on eJuggle to view members only content; I’ll be writing up a help article prior to that date to try to get you all logged in. Your members only content is a substantial membership benefit, and it bums us out that some of you have had trouble accessing it. We’ll fix that.

That’s all the sexy stuff. The boring, but incredibly important, point is this: we are a service organization. Our charter is to render assistance to fellow jugglers, and we take that seriously. Through programs like YEP, Props 2 U, World Juggling Day, the creation of tons of free content for all here on eJuggle, and our annual Video Tutorial Contest, we’re trying to make the world a better place for jugglers. And we think we’re succeeding. But we couldn’t do it without you, our members and volunteers. So thanks.

So $29. Vendor discounts. Wed Peden. Helping the juggling community at large. Members only eJuggle content. Insurance for performers and teachers. Mentorship program. More benefits still to be announced in the coming months. And did I mention Wes Peden? It is indeed an exciting time to be involved with the IJA. We sure hope you agree…

The fine print. For members that pre-purchased years of membership that have not yet begun as of the August 1st price drop date, we’ll be crediting your account with extra membership time proportional to the price drop for adult membership. Since that price dropped from $40 to $29, we’ll be crediting your account with at least (40/29 * 365) – 365 = 139 days of extra membership. We’re working out the specifics, but that is the minimum we’re working from. That is only for full years of membership that have not yet begun as of August 1st, 2012. Each such year will receive at least an extra 139 days of membership credit.

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Dave returned to the world of juggling in 2010 after a 20 year hiatus. He currently chairs the Board of Directors of the IJA, teaches juggling to middle school kids, and is a spectacularly average juggler. In his real life, he lives in the Bay Area, CA and is a software engineer, working on Yahoo! Fantasy Sports.

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