This meet schedule was originally published on AllEars.Net and is used here with permission.


2nd Annual Holiday RADP Meet Weekend
December 6-7 1997

Folks were introducing themselves and enjoying the sunshine. From left to right here is Larisa O'Donnell, Lucy O'Donnell, gardenia , Jeff Spencer, Jim Freeman, Ed's elbow and Ron's back.

One of the things I had wanted to do, was a group picture of all the Disney Webmasters that were present and also a photo of WDWIG Team members who attended. Those of you at the meet can understand when I say it was way too big to do something like that.


Here is Craig Wingerson, who maintains the WDW Gateway, -- attending the RADP meet with his wife and daughter. Craig intentionally extended his stay so that he could attend the RADP meet on Saturday! He's got a way cool hat with Mickey ears that I don't think I have seen yet.



One of the real thrills for me was meeting two DisneyWebSite gurus -- Ed Sterret of TUDLP and Greg Orwin (ChristoperRobin on IRC) of the We're Going on Holiday to WDW site. Here are the 3 of us at the meet...Left to Right is Greg, Ed and Deb!


palmer
I also finally got to meet Palmer Chappelle who maintains Sorcery on the Web. Last year Palmer was going to meet up with us, but couldn't find us at the Fountains. He had no troubles this year with so many RADP'rs walking around with their red RADP buttons on!

Other WebMasters who attended the meet include: Rick Howard (Kingdom Magic Travel), Rusty Wyatt (Illuminations), Aven Baral (Pleasure Island) and Jeff Spencer (Spencer's Disney Family Page).


badboys of IRC
We often joke on RADP and irc about the RADP babes and RADP bad boys... well - here are some of the RADP Bad Boys! From Left to Right: GenieEFL, Eric, Sam, Kenny, Rob, and JT Toad himself!


czar and czarina

Special Guests Jim and Eureka welcome Patt Sheahan's (SwanDiver) daughter Jenn to the RADP family. Jenn joined us not only for Saturday's Epcot meet but also Sunday night at the Brown Derby.



More and more folks gathered and soon we were blocking the pathway in front of the Fountains. Here you see: Arlen, Person To Be Identified, Rob C., Mike Scibeta, Paul McKenna, and Pat Sklenar.



What a delight to see my friend from DownUnder twice in one week! Here's Larisa O'Donnell (MissBianca on IRC) who is traveling throughout the US with her folks Lucy and Brian. I got to spend a wondrous day with the 3 of them in Washington DC the week earlier.



Rob Olsan writes the Disney Institute Accommodations FAQ for WDWIG. He's pictured here with his brother Brent. Other WDWIG Team members in attendance included: gardenia, Jeff Spencer, DCDeb, Andrea McKenna, Craig Wingerson, Michele Warner and Kenny Cottrell.



The crowd continued to swell and soon we RADP'rs where EVERYWHERE! Folks who post and folks who lurk were all meeting.
Diznee39 even posted from Innoventions in Epcot! Well, I have decided to do it...I will delurk in about ten minutes in front of the Fountain View Cafe...Wish me luck!...Hello, to all from Epcot! Diznee39 - TDC Keeper of the Kaki-Gori! Diznee39 and I met -- it was way cool! Wish I had gotten a picture!



Todd and Sue have been writing me for months....so very excited about their trip to WDW! It was great meeting email friends.

As we gathered for the group photo, it was tough getting everyone all lined up. GenieEFL stood on a wheelchair and began giving instructions to everyone to MOVE TO THE CENTER AND AS CLOSE TOGETHER AS POSSIBLE! It was unreal!

As we had everyone in a large area, I began to do GiveAways! I was so so thankful to have the help of Bruce Metcalf (Rufus) and Pam Kosko (and Pam's hubby), and Carol Koster. Everyone in attendance was asked to fill out a 3x5 card with their name and email address. All cards were placed in the Official Drawing Hat, which just happened to be a Red RADP Hat from the August 1997 CANAM meet!

The Grand Prize was donated by Rita Aero and was an autographed copy of her book WDW For Adults and Families Too! In addition, Becky Ashley had donated her unused Fall Fantasy Coupons which were shared with folks, Meli donated a NY Disney Store Minnie Liberty Pin, and the O'Donnell's contributed a boomerang from Australia! A listing of all who attended and the prizes won are on the last page of this write-up.


Rufus (Bruce Metcalf) writes: At noon, most of the EMuckers gathered at the Fountain View Cafe in Epcot to join the annual r.a.d.p meet. What a mob, there must have been 100 people there! Disney security kept trying to shoo us about so we wouldn't block the paths for the civilians, with little success. I finally ran out of patience, and, doing my best imitation of General Knowledge from Cranium Command, used my lecture hall voice to herd the group into position for the photographers. They laughed at me, but they moved.

At this point, someone asked the Disney Security folks if they would mind taking a picture of us. "Sure," they said, and were quickly passed about thirty cameras. Deb Wills also dragooned me into service as a human megaphone for the door prize giveaway. I suspect her outstanding web site on WDW will post a final total and possibly a roster of those in attendance, so I won't even try, but it was a spectacularly successful meet. Kinda scary to see the size of crowd the net can gather, ain't it?

When we'd had all the mass socializing we could stand, most EMuckers struck out for the attractions of the park. The EMuckers spent much of that day and the next prowling Epcot and MK with much gleeful jesting and in-character conversation. I believe I can safely say that a good time was had by all.



gardenia went to Guest Services to get some Cast Members to help. Jeff Spencer, Peter Sabin along with the 2 Epcot CMs took photos with about 20+ cameras. What a sight that was!




Another notable pair at the event was Rick and Carol Koster! They have been members of RADP and RAD for what seems like ages... I call them the "elderstates(wo)men" of RADP!
Carol shares her thoughts about the day.....

"... my husband Rich Koster, my 23 month old son Michael and I were at the r.a.d.parks December 6th 'net meet. We've been around r.a.d. since July 1992, some might recall we started posting Disneyana Convention trip reports on r.a.d. and eventually we became Future Disney Cabinet (FDC), Trimobios Disney Cabinet (TDC) and EntertainMUCK (EMuck) Mickey,
Minnie, Meecelet and Meeces (family online moniker).

We've attended r.a.d. meets (back before the newsgroup split) at WDW before. In September 1994 there was a really terrific meet, about 30 people showed up at some time during the day, one came from Scotland.

I expected "several people" on December 6th but how many actually showed up blew me away! Not only that, but the luminaries of not just r.a.d.parks but as well one person from alt.disney.disneyland (Sue) were there.

As it was, it was a spectacular meeting! The hugeness was apparent when the Group Photo session was trying to be organized. Barb aka gardenia kept trying to marshal everyone into Group Photo organization, shouting to everyone to bunch up, get organized, a scene a little reminiscent of the Green Army Men in "Toy Story". ;-)

There were also little prizes awarded, pins and some "WDW For Adults, and Families Too!" Rita Aero coupons ("The infamous $50 coupon!" as it was proclaimed.) given away in a drawing Deb recruited me and pressed me into public service as recording secretary for some of this.

I urged some who were within earshot to sing "Happy Birthday" to Walt Disney, his birthday having been the previous day (December 5th) and some did, which was a fitting tribute to the man who really made this r.a.d.parks meet possible.

I met a lot of people who remembered my husband and I from r.a.d. days or other 'net.meets, or people who had read some of our posts. But the gracious warmth extended to my husband and I by so many wonderful people at the event was a triple blessing, not just for the camaraderie of the newsgroup but for the Holidays and that the 'net.meet fell coincidentally on our 17th wedding anniversary and while we were celebrating a few weeks early my son turning two years old and me turning older than dirt.

Thank you, r.a.d.parks and those members of the newsgroup attending that day, for a lovely and fun time. Folks who "lurk" (read only, they don't post) on r.a.d./r.a.d.parks and who came up to my husband and I to say hello, and to _all_ who were there -- I bow to you (as I did there, actually more like falling to one knee in tribute ;-)) and hug all of you! Thank you for a lovely time. Much happiness to you at Christmas, Hanukkah and for the 1998 New Year and beyond!

The meet's success is also a tribute to r.a.d.parks itself. It has
evolved into a terrific newsgroup since the 1995 split, filled with so much spirit and genuine helpfulness that a WDW guidebook author, Rita Aero, mentions it in her book prominently. This is an outstanding quality in a newsgroup. All of you are quite stellar. When times don't go so well in the day-to-day posts, keep this in mind, it will give you hope and a positive outlook on what is actually a fleeting situation that is typical of Usenet newsgroups. r.a.d.parks today, at it's best, is comparable to the best of rec.arts.disney at it's peak in 1994 before the group split, the happiest place on the Internet. Hip hip hooray x 3 for r.a.d.parks! All of you have much to be proud of. :-D

PPS: If you've never attended a 'net.meet, don't be shy or feel
intimidated. As large as this December 6th group was, it was warm,
friendly and intimate. Something about this meet was very special that it attracted so many. But it was like we all knew each other, even though few of us had ever actually met. Having Disney fanship and r.a.d.* in common is enough to bring folks together in mutual respect and friendship. So consider "going for it" when/if the opportunity to attend one presents itself. :-D

From New Orleans, and rarin' to go back to WDW ASAP!




epcot4.jpg Kristi Sabin introduced herself to me and generously donated a $50 Swan/Dolphin coupon (which was given out at Sunday's Brown Derby meet). Kristi also told me a wondrous story of how she checks WDWIG every Friday and when she has looked at all the RADP meet photos, hoped that one day she would be in them. Well Kristi -- I wish I had a picture of you to include right here (want to send me one?)...but you are IN the official RADP Meet photo and you're here in WDWIG! WOO HOO!


epcot5.jpg
My two dear net friends, Gene and Aven Baral were on hand. These were the very first RADP'rs I ever met in person. Gene writes: As one of the attendees of the RADP meet at Fountainview Cafe (Epcot) I just want to report on the rousing success that the meet was. From a group of 30 souls meeting last year (1996) there were close to 100 in attendance this year - the final total won't be in until the photos are developed <g>.


d_epc13.jpg
I know I already have a picture of Greg Orwin in here...but he is just the sweetest man! Greg was staying at WDW for 2 weeks and collected a lot of soaps for Dotti's Mickey Soap and Shampoo for Kids Project. He dropped them off at my hotel so that I could get them to Dotti for him. He also included some extra items for the kids! Thank you Greg!

DCDeb writes: The number of folks at this get-together was absolutely overwhelming! I *never* expected to see so many RADP'ers in one place at one time! The best part was that everyone was so welcoming and warm -- it was really true... there were no strangers, just friends you hadn't met yet. I definitely encourage anyone thinking about attending a RADP meet -- either at WDW or at home -- to do it! Here's Pat Sklenar, Kristi Sabin, DCDeb enjoying the day.


Lots of folks I wish I had gotten photos of and didn't...but I do have some great memories. At one point Janet Saunders came up to me...we'd been emailing off and on for a very long time.

Janet writes: I only caught the tail end of the meet, I arrived at 12:30 while all the pictures were being taken. Gee some of you thought that I was just trying to get past and was told to come on through, but I was trying to find Deb in the crowd!! I stayed till I finally was able to introduce myself to her and then I had to leave the party, it was good to see everyone even from a distance. I hope to be able to spend some time at the next RADP meet next year. (If I can talk my husband into going again)


rob1.jpg
Jeff, Larisa, Sam and Pam (Scrappy) enjoy the afternoon.


And so the Official part of the meet winded down and as the group dispersed, some folks lunched at the Land, others in Mexico, still others drank their way around World Showcase.

Meli writes: We went to Mexico with Rusty (EC Fan) and Jennifer while gardenia went to the front gate to meet her friend Susan and Debbie told us she'd catch up with us. Eventually we were joined by Scrappy and Jeff, and then Kenny and Sam and Rob and Rob's brother showed up, as well as Larisa, her parents and Mike (5pin). It was kind of cold with the breeze blowing on us, but it was wonderful just being there with so many friends. gardenia and Susan in style!

depcbarb.jpg

John and I ended up walking around World Showcase with Rusty and Susan, taking in Maelstrom (but not the movie) as well as the American Adventure (Susan's first time). Rusty had to leave, and we continued our stroll around World Showcase, eventually going to see Horizons, Figment and Spaceship Earth, as well as some of the shops. We ran into Karen and the McKennas in the passageway near Innoventions and Horizons and exchanged a quick group hug. Eventually we left Epcot and went to our separate cars and met up again at Wilderness Lodge for an intimate dinner at Artist's Point.

Karen writes: I had fulfilled a lifelong dream, and made lunch arrangements with Eureka, Jim, and the McKennas. Off we went to the Garden Grill. It was witty conversation, more hugs, and mucho explaining from me, as we inhaled our meal, and looked in the second story window of the house in the ride there. I had details pointed out to me, stuff I had never thought about before. Then we all went on the Land ride, which I had never been on before. It was so cool!



Write-up of the Second RADP December Meet continues here.



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