If you sign up, show up!
IF YOU SIGN UP, PLEASE SHOW UP.
That's easy to say, right? Because stuff always seems to interfere, especially when you're a parent: A kid gets sick, or the nap schedule is thrown off, or the 4-year-old won't put on her shoes, or someone takes forever in the bathroom. And then you're late, or you miss it entirely. I know well what it's like.
On the other hand, I get to see issue this from the other side, too: As publisher of KidsOutAndAbout, I care deeply about supporting the people who are creating these events, especially the free ones. I often get to know the organizers personally: They're creative and hard working, and they care immensely about providing value to their community. So when they create something interesting or informative and set everything up carefully--and then folks don't show up even when they say they will, well, it's pretty hard. They (and I) have watched this trend over the last decade and a half, and the problem seems to be getting worse.
We're wondering what might be up with that. It can't be that people are just getting ruder, right? Maybe it's that there is so much happening in the community that people always want to try to leave their options open. In any case, we're wondering how we might help fix the problem.
So I'm doing what I always do when I need creative solutions: I'm turning to you, you wonderful readers, all 50,000 of you who receive this newsletter each week. I KNOW YOU CAN HELP US FIGURE THIS OUT. What can organizers of community activities do to help ensure that those who sign up actually show up? Please take our survey about what you think will help, which has one main question, two quick bonus questions, and a space for you to write additional suggestions if you have some. It will take you one minute. Click here for the survey.
Thank you! And your community organizers really do send their love!
—Debra Ross, Publisher