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Mid-Appalachian Region of
the National Speleological Society


February 23, 2002

The meeting was called to order by MAR Chair, Bob Gulden at 1:30 PM at the home of Jay Herbein, Harrisburg, PA.

Secretary's Report:
The Meeting Minutes of the 2001 meeting were approved as published in the last MAR Breakdown newsletter.

Treasurer's Report:
The Treasurer's Report was read by treasurer Bette White. Printed copies of the report were distributed. Printed copies were distributed.

MAR Breakdown:
Karen Bange apologized for the postage due on the January 2002 Breakdowns. The $.23 donation to the MAR was appreciated. Currently the Breakdown is printed on 11" x 17" paper then folded. Thus the Breakdown pages have to be done in multiples of 4. Karen will start doing the Breakdown on 8½" x 11" paper and using staples down the sides. This will allow for any number of pages.

2001 Spring Field Meet:
Franklin County Grotto reported the meet was well attended, the weather cooperated and that there were good cave trips. One of the MAR road signs was lost at the event.

2001 Fall Field Meet:
No one from Central Jersey was present to give a report. Those that did attend the event reported it was nicely done with good food, terrific weather and quite emotional because of the recent events of "9/11".

MAR Web Site:
The MAR webmaster, Christopher Catherman, reported the website is up and running. Lots of new items were added to the site. There is a list serve with the site for individual emails and announcements. Web address is

MAR 50th Anniversary (2003):
A discussion was initiated by Christopher Catherman in regards to the MAR's 50th anniversary next year. Dale Ibberson and Keith Wheeland will work together to help fill in the gaps on past field meets and past officers. Hosts for the 2003 MAR field meets should plan on doing something in honor of the MARs 50th anniversary.

MAR Bulletins:
Will White reported three Bulletins are moving forward.

    CCLUM (Clinton, Columbia, Lycoming, Union, and Montour counties):
    Keith Christenson emailed that the CCLUM (Clinton, Columbia, Lycoming, Union and Montour) Bulletin is almost finished.

    Fayette County:
    Kim Metzgar and Jim Kennedy are working together on finishing Fayette Bulletin.

    Huntingdon County:
    Huntingdon is moving along with the assistance of PSU students.

There was a discussion about reprinting "out-of-print" Bulletins. It was agreed that photocopies for personal use is okay. A motion was made, and accepted; to have Bette White, treasurer, look into the cost of reprinting on demand Bulletins and report back to the MAR.

Pennsylvania Cave Database:
Keith Wheeland reported, there are 1,557 entries in the database, including commercial caves, gated caves, mines and 11 fictional caves.

Cave Conservancy Reports:
Franklin County Grotto reported Cleversburg Sink was sold this past year to South Hampton Township. The management/access is status quo.

Jon Pearson reported the Tytoona Cave Fund is paid off in full although the Preserve still needs funds for its annual operating budget.

Dale Ibberson continues as the liaison between the MAR and PA Game Commission. Bert Ashbrook reported a bat count was done last week in Shofer Cave. Results are not known yet.

Nittany Grotto reported that McAlisterville Cave was broken into last month. The gate is scheduled to be replaced March 11th.

Harris Martin encouraged anyone working in a karst/watershed area to look into Growing Greener Program for the possibility of grant monies.

Seven Valleys Grotto reported Milroy No.2 has been regated after the first gate was vandalized.

No new reports.

MAR Incorporation:
The MAR discussed the pros and cons of applying for tax-exempt status. There appears to be no advantage of being tax-exempt, as the MAR does not pay taxes.

A discussion followed on incorporation. The driving force behind incorporation is to protect the MAR and its officers in the event of caving accident, especially at a field meet. Bert Ashbrook reported there would need to be some changes to the MAR government prior to incorporation. Bert will work with the MAR Chair to get the ball rolling on incorporation.

Hosting an MAR:
Keith Wheeland and Bette White have prepared comprehensive guidelines for hosting an MAR field meet. A motion was made, and passed, to have the MAR secretary supply hosting grottos with a copy of the guidelines. The guidelines are also posted on the MAR website. A motion was made, and passed, that the MAR considers anyone over the age of 17 to be an "Adult" and pay full price to include the MAR fee.

2002 Spring Field Meet:
Hosted by Seven Valleys Grotto at Rupert Cave, McVeytown. To be held the weekend of May 3-5th. All is going well; there will be great food and beverages, lots of cave trips, door prizes, squeeze box and music. Bring the good weather!! Flyers were passed around.

2002 Fall Field Meet:
Commander Cody Caving Club reported the event is September 20-22nd at the Lazy A Campground in West Virginia. They will serve an Italian dinner Saturday and hope to have a bluegrass band.

Spring 2003 and Fall 2003 Field Meets:
Need hosts for these two events!! The 2003 Fall MAR meet will be the official MAR 50th anniversary celebration. There was some discussion of having this an MAR sponsored event instead of an individual grotto hosting the meet.

Pennsylvania Cave Conservancy (PCC):
Meeting to follow the MAR Business Meeting.

Old Business:
Bert Ashbrook has MAR Cave signs available.

New Business:
Keith Wheeland reminded everyone that there is a general NSS membership available for $12. This type membership entitles the member to the NSS Membership Manual and Cave Accident Report only.

John Rosenfeld reported on the caving fatality that occurred in July. He reported the MT Joy Fire Department has been paid in full for expenses incurred in the rescue. York Grotto is looking into a cave rescue fund in memory of Sharn Cleland.

Keith Wheeland reported there is no dialogue with the owners of J4 and the cave remains "CLOSED".

Bob Gulden announced a Bowden Cave cleanup scheduled for April 13, 2002.

Meeting adjourned at 3:40 PM.

Respectfully submitted,
Karen Bange
MAR Recording Secretary

Representatives at the meeting:

  • Bald Eagle Grotto
  • Baltimore Grotto
  • York Grotto
  • Nittany Grotto
  • Greater Allentown Grotto
  • Franklin County Grotto
  • Philly Grotto
  • Pittsburgh Grotto
  • Commander Cody Caving Club
  • South Jersey Grotto
  • Huntingdon County Cave Hunters
  • Mid Atlantic Karst Conservancy (MAKC)
  • Seven Valleys Grotto

Click "Here" for the February 23, 2002 minutes of the PCC Meeting (Winter) that took place immediately after the MAR Business Meeting.

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Last Updated: 02/25/02
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