News for January 9th, the day after!

Update #2: Julie Brewington has a very nice summary and photos from the MD CAN conference, check it out here at Right Coast Conservative.

Update: As I mentioned below, the only reporter I saw all day was from the Annapolis Patch.  Click here for the story filed by reporter Cory Galliher.

Thanks so much to all of you who traveled in nasty weather to Annapolis yesterday for the Inaugural Maryland Conservative Action Network Conference.  I’m trying to find the right word to describe the conference other than it was wild.  We got slammed!   Going into the conference on Friday we had about 180 registrants (80 above what our earlier goal had been).   We ultimately had around 215!   That number is based, not on sorting out registrations this  morning (that’s going to take all week), but on the fact that the hotel did a fantastic job of finding more food in the kitchen to bring the boxed lunch numbers up to 215!

Thanks to all of the last minute helpers we had at the registration tables to get everyone checked in!

In addition to all of you, we thank our speakers who were all fabulous and who generously gave their time to be with us yesterday.   Some of them have groups they work with, so you might consider helping support those groups as a way of saying thanks.  And, by all means, please join their organizations!

As first time conference organizers, we sure learned a lot!   I don’t know where to begin with that, but did want to mention that if you were one of the 80 plus people who squeezed into Apostle Claver’s “conversion politics” training session, you should know the hotel said we couldn’t stay in the ballroom but could use the smaller adjoining room which seated 40.  Figuring that 40 seats sounded pretty good, that’s what we did.  We were wrong.

One thing we were right about was advance planning to keep the conference moving forward and on schedule.  I didn’t notice exactly when we finished but it must have been about 4:35.  So Cathy and Tonya as moderators, planned for and stuck tenaciously to a schedule for the day.  Perhaps its unseemly for me to suggest it, but thanks to Cathy and Tonya for the well-oiled moderation of the conference!

Judging by the large number of  attendees visiting the vendor booths, we hope that you all found lots of new members and supporters.

We look forward to reviewing the questionnaires many of you filled out to figure out what our next step might be.  MD CAN to date is simply three women putting on a conference.  We will keep you all posted on the results of your suggestions from the questionnaires.  If you took one home, please take time to fill it out and send it to our Post Office box address.

Our fervent hope was for us all to meet each other, learn from speakers and each other, and go away with new networking friends.  I think we accomplished that, although we wish we had met more of you!

The networking list that we told you about on several occasions will now take a little time to organize (after we had a zillion new registrations).  At check-in we asked if you would be willing to make available to fellow attendees your name, county and e-mail address.  If you said ‘yes,’ we will soon be  pulling that information together and only those who said ‘yes,’ will be receiving the list.  If it’s a ‘no’ we completely understand.  If you indicated neither, you will get an e-mail from me asking again.   I noted that there were two counties trying to pull their fellow attendees together at the afternoon break to meet each other—one was the much larger Montgomery County contingent and the other the Prince George’s group.

Until we can get a real bulletin board website going (the only thing we’ve discussed for MD CAN to do moving forward), please visit this blog for more updates on the conference.

An afterthought: As far as I know only one reporter attended this large gathering of Maryland conservatives, and that was a reporter from the Annapolis Patch.  So, if you see any coverage, send it my way.    It’s typical that the mainstream media in Maryland is not covering this story, but as someone said, it’s o.k. if they underestimate us right now.

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News for January 8th

Sorry to see that the weathermen yesterday morning were wrong and now it’s snowing!   They are predicting a few inches. Hopefully it won’t keep you away.  We are here in Annapolis and ready to go. 

Drive safely!

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News for January 7th

Good morning and good news…prayers have been answered and it looks like any bad weather will have moved out by later today, and tomorrow should be good for driving to Annapolis!  UPDATE:  OOPs!  Sorry! The forecast changed somewhere late in the day!

We hope that this first MD CAN conference, which has now generated so much excitement with last minute registrations, will be the beginning of more networking across the state to promote conservative principles through action locally, statewide and nationally.

See you tomorrow!

Some last minute updates:

If you haven’t seen the press release yesterday, check it out here and send to your media contacts.  Bring, or send us, your media contacts so we can compile a state list for everyone to use.

We will be finalizing the registration list this morning and will have to cut it off at noontime, so that we can get down to Annapolis.  However, you can still register at the door tomorrow morning.   It looks like we will have around 175 participants, but it could be more depending on how many come tomorrow without advance notice.

There are about 10 registrations from late yesterday that have not been checked in (or possibly a few in the Post Office Box), but will be acknowledged this morning.  However, don’t hesitate to e-mail me, Ann, acorco9104@aol.com  to check on your registration if you are concerned about it.

There were also a few e-mail addresses that were not legible or were kicked back, so that may be why you haven’t heard anything.

If you are paying at the door, remember cash or checks, we do not have the ability to process credit cards.

We have about 18 booths (tables) that various groups have reserved in the main concourse to promote their organizations.   Please come early to allow time for meeting the group leaders.    Registration opens at 8:30 a.m. with coffee and refreshments available.  This is your best time to mingle and visit organization booths.

Speakers biographies

Be sure to take a few minutes and read our speaker bios.  Although each has a long list of accomplishments and a distinguished career, for the sake of time, we aren’t planning to spend a lot of time introducing them.  Also, if you read the bios it may help you formulate questions for a back and forth discussion with our presenters, something we very much want to encourage.

Lunch table discussion topics

We would like to make our lunch break another opportunity to network and meet activists involved with other issues and from other areas of the state.  So when you check in, note on the reverse side of your agenda that this list (below) of lunch table discussions will be available.  As we break for lunch, about half of the tables will be identified as tables for the various topics.  You are not limited to those topics!   The remaining tables are for those who wish to sit with friends new and old and just enjoy conversing about whatever.   So, just pick up your boxed lunch and head to the table of your choice.   If the table is full and it’s a topic that you really want to be involved in, just pull up an extra chair.

Some of our speakers and group leaders will be leading some of these lunch table discussions:

ART  OF  PERSUASION

BUDGET ISSUES

EDUCATION

IMMIGRATION

MARRIAGE

MEDIA  OUTREACH

PRECINCT  ORGANIZATION

RIGHT  TO  LIFE

RUNNING  FOR  OFFICE

TECHNOLOGY

URBAN  OUTREACH

VOTER  OUTREACH

VOTER  FRAUD

If you didn’t see it the other day, for more information you might want to visit the News for January 5th, here.  Also, for all other conference information click on the various topics listed just below our name in the header above.

Questions?   Ann acorco9104@aol.com

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Press release: January 6, 2011

Readers please pass this press release on to your media contacts


FOR  IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Maryland CAN conference drawing grassroots activists from across the state

Annapolis, MD – January 6, 2011 Eager to get down to work  networking, conservatives from across the state of Maryland will converge Saturday at the MD Conservative Action Network conference in Annapolis.  Registration numbers have well exceeded the 100 mark organizers had originally planned for.  “It looks like we are now headed toward 175,” said Ann Corcoran of Washington County one of the three meeting planners.

“For political liberals who called grassroots conservatives and tea partiers ‘astroturf’ and predicted we wouldn’t last long, this sure sends a different message, especially in traditionally blue Maryland.,” Corcoran continued.  “No astroturf here, no funding, just three ladies with a will to get Maryland moving in the right direction.”

Hailing from all but five Maryland counties, grassroots conservatives of all stripes will hear discussions led by former Gubernatorial primary candidate Brian Murphy, former candidates for Congress Charles Lollar and  Robert Broadus, newly sworn in Congressman Andy Harris, and State Delegate Ron George.  Also on the agenda are Sheriff Jenkins of Frederick County, ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief, and the leader of Raging Elephants, Texas activist Claver Kamau-Imani.

Tonya Tiffany of Howard County, a member of the Maryland Society of Patriots and one of the three meeting planners said, “The ‘conversion politics’ Apostle Claver will be discussing is the most exciting part of the day for me because we are going to learn how to find people with conservative values wherever they live and whatever their political affiliation has been, and join forces with them to change the political landscape in Maryland.”

By far the largest number of registrations has come from Montgomery County.  “That doesn’t surprise me,” said Cathy Trauernicht, the third meeting organizer and  Montgomery County resident. “During the US Senate primary campaign for Jim Rutledge, we saw in Montgomery County a deep and very active group of people who felt strongly about conservative principles and who have grown weary of the tax and spend, spend, spend mindset both in Montgomery County and in Annapolis.”

“We will have succeeded on Saturday if we are able to bring grassroots activists of all stripes together, many meeting for the first time, and go away with plans to work together and meet again,” concluded Trauernicht.   “We hope MD CAN will serve as a bulletin board of sorts for all conservative interest groups in Maryland.”

For more information on the conference visit the MD CAN website here and check out the complete list of speakers for Saturday, or contact Ann at 301-964-5442.

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News for January 5th

It’s getting crazy (in a good way)!  Registrations are around 150 and counting with lots of e-mails to say conservative grassroots activists are coming, telling me registrations are in the mail or coming at the door!

But, please don’t put any more registrations in the mail from here on out! Let us know you are coming by e-mail because lunch/seating orders were placed yesterday and although we can make some adjustments in the next few days we can’t completely throw the hotel into a frenzy.  E-mail me, Ann ( acorco9104@aol.com ) to pre-register.

Also, since we are just grassroots folks ourselves and have no financial backing for this conference each of you who tell me you are paying at the door, will have lunch ordered, so we must pay the hotel whether you come or not!  If you change your mind, please let us know today (Wednesday) or Thursday.

As I process your registrations today and tomorrow, you should get an e-mail confirmation from me, so please look for that.

Vegetarians! You have a veggie lunch option so let me know if you are one of those who have pre-registered and didn’t use a registration form and thus didn’t know you had a choice.  All other lunch boxes will have a variety of sandwiches.   Again, acorco9104@aol.com.

Questions, please check FAQS here.  Note the question about the weather.  Everyone is instructed to pray for good weather!

Conference Agenda is here.  Be sure to note we have added on a training session from 5 p.m to 6:30 p.m. on “Conversion Politics” which you are welcome to stay for.

Vendor tables

We didn’t know those would be so popular!  Here is a list of groups and organizations that will have booths (tables) in the main concourse so that you can learn more about what they are doing.   We recommend you come early to register (8:30 a.m.) to enjoy coffee/breakfast pastries and visit groups with tables. The program begins promptly at 9:30 a.m.

Raging Elephants
American Majority/Emerging Corruption
Maryland Society of Patriots PAC
Accuracy in Media
Freedom Works
Help Save Maryland
Friends of Charles Lollar
Protect Marriage Maryland
Teenage Republicans
Americans for Prosperity
New Day Maryland
New Renaissance in Education
RISE-America
Leadership Institute
Maryland Right to Life
Maryland Young Americans for Freedom

County counts!

In terms of the number of registrants, Montgomery County leads the pack by far!  That means of course that we will be turning Montgomery County around in the coming election—right!

Anne Arundel County is second, Carroll County third and Frederick fourth!

And, alas, we have no registrants so far from:  Allegany, Caroline, Charles, Garrett, Queen Anne’s, and Somerset.  Update:  We got a Charles countian!

Contact information distribution

We had previously asked if we could distribute your name, county and e-mail address to attendees at the conference.  We have decided to ask each of you for permission at registration and then distribute to those who wish to be included after the conference.

This is a networking opportunity and we would like people to reach each other after leaving on Saturday, so it would be great if you felt comfortable giving out your contact e-mail address, but we understand if you don’t.   We will be asking on Saturday!

Media contact request

One of the projects I hope to undertake following the conference is to build a media list for the state of Maryland—newspapers, radio programs, TV, bloggers etc.—with up to date contact e-mails for editors.  This would be a list that MD CAN would make available to any conservative group in the state.   I believe we need to keep our issues constantly in front of all media, even before the unfriendly media outlets.

So, please begin sending me your local media contacts—most outlets have a news editor e-mail address and an opinion editor address that news and op-eds can be sent to.  That is what I am looking for!   Thanks!  acorco9104@aol.com

LOOKING FORWARD TO MEETING YOU ALL ON SATURDAY!

Ann, Cathy, and Tonya

Update: If you are looking to stay at the DoubleTree Annapolis overnight either on Friday or Saturday nights, we have a room rate for MD CAN registrants of $99 plus tax. So be sure to call the hotel directly and mention MD CAN, we should still have rooms available.

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Here is the latest news…..

Registrations are coming in fast and furious and our numbers are hovering around 150!   That is way beyond our expectations.

Tomorrow we will have more news.   But, please don’t put any more registration forms in the mail because we would hate for them to be sitting in a mailbox after we have left for Annapolis on Friday afternoon!

You may e-mail me, Ann, acorco9104@aol.com and pre-register.  More info. tomorrow morning!

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Last day to mail registrations!

We are really excited! Registrations are pouring in!  Over 100 have already registered!   However, today (yesterday, January 3rd) is the last day to print out a registration form and get it in the mail to us in time.  The form is here.

Because there has been so much interest generated in the last few days….

If you cannot get to the post office today, you may contact me, Ann (acorco9104@aol.com) and pre-register.  We will then honor the $40 registration fee when you arrive.   However, if you do that, you must show up!   Not wanting to sound too mean, but we have no funding for this event other than your registration fee, so if we order your lunch this week and you don’t come after all, we must eat it (financially!).  So don’t pre-register unless you are sure you will be there.

However, we are not turning anyone away at the door!  For those who have not pre-registered, or won’t decide until late in the week, the fee at the door will be $50.  Please bring cash or a check.

Some logistical issues

Everyone whose registrations we received as of last Friday should have gotten e-mails from me confirming your registrations and making a few additional corrections, etc.  Let me know if you did not receive confirmation.  As soon as registrations come in today and later this week, you should hear from me.

We had an early version of the registration form that said registrations would begin at 9 a.m., we subsequently moved that time to 8:30 a.m. There will be coffee/tea and refreshments so come early and meet fellow conservatives and visit the information tables that various groups will have set up.   The program begins promptly at 9:30 a.m.

An early form did not have a vegetarian option for lunch, so be sure to contact me, if you do not have that on your form and would like a vegetarian wrap for lunch.

Another thing that was added late to our agenda was the training workshop by Apostle Claver that is free and will run from 5 p.m. to 6:30 in another room at the DoubleTree Hotel.  That session will be in addition to his scheduled session earlier in the afternoon.

Very important! Since this is a networking conference we want all of you to continue to communicate and work together after the conference. To accomplish that objective, we are planning to have available a contact list with your name, county and e-mail address for all attendees.  If you do not wish to be listed, please tell us before Thursday of this week.

Can’t wait to meet you all on Saturday!  Ann, Cathy and Tonya

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