Author Topic: NHC competition site change.  (Read 8470 times)

Online theDarkSide

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #30 on: January 29, 2013, 12:34:14 PM »
This is not a smart remark, but I wonder if we will look back someday and say, "That was the day the CHA ( Canandian Homebrew Association ) was founded".

Unfortunately, the AHA has to address certain issues and someone is going to get the short end.  I'm sure one of these days we'll see the rule outlawing "virtual" homebrew clubs for COTY awards. 

We could always annex Canada  ;)
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #31 on: January 29, 2013, 12:40:21 PM »
Several years back the Brewer of the Year was from Japan. Homebrewing is not legal there, and shipping would be more expensive.

Just saying.
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Offline udubdawg

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #32 on: January 29, 2013, 12:58:21 PM »
(it would be great if our membership came with one guaranteed NHC entry slot)
Trouble is - there are currently 750*11 sites = 8250 entry slots and over 30,000 members

yeah we talked about this last year.  And with 1735 first round entrants last year, that's what, 7% of membership at the time?  I could be wrong, but even tripling that % seems unlikely to me. 
But OK, let's assume we have to keep the current cap.  Would anyone truly object to allowing 1-2 days where any current member could enter their one entry, until the competition was filled?  And if not filled, opened up to non-members/members registering more entries?  Like a GABF AHA member pre-sale.

Once the judge situation supports it, I'd also like to see only two beers per category moving on to the Final Round.  This allows 50% growth, but no change in Final Round entries.  But maybe that's not reasonable - I'm not Janis, and I don't know how much more she can do!   :o  Maybe 5-6 new locations is too much for one to organize.

On that note, I'm curious what Janis thinks the future holds for this competition...

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Offline tony

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #33 on: January 29, 2013, 01:56:45 PM »

We could always annex Canada  ;)


This is already more true than perhaps you realize, my friend.

Perhaps keeping the Canadian first round as is for a few weeks and then any left over space
could be passed along to our American friends could be arranged. And like was proposed, only
gold and silver with a predetermined score disqualification level set, would limit the entries into the final round.

If as was said, a complaint was that not enough entries from Canada made it into the second round, then how is changing the site to the US with a larger second round entry base going to lessen the load on the
judges?

Online mtnrockhopper

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #34 on: January 29, 2013, 02:05:43 PM »
If as was said, a complaint was that not enough entries from Canada made it into the second round, then how is changing the site to the US with a larger second round entry base going to lessen the load on the
judges?
I think it had more to do with 250 Canadian members having their own site while 29,750 US members shared 10 sites (3000 members / site). Unfortunately though, fairness is a matter of personnal perspective.
 
Like my old boss said "It's so fair it's not fair to anybody"
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Offline hokerer

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #35 on: January 29, 2013, 02:16:10 PM »
I understand that YOU did not make this decision.  I just wanted to define the terms 'fair' and 'equal', which you did use.

As far as defining "equal", what dawg said was "provides equal playing field to all outside the country" and that is an absolutely true statement.  Brewers in Canada are now exactly equal to brewers in the UK, France, and everywhere else outside of the US.  Prior to the change, brewers in Canada had an advantage over their other international entrants.
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Offline tony

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #36 on: January 29, 2013, 02:38:07 PM »
  Brewers in Canada are now exactly equal to brewers in the UK, France, and everywhere else outside of the US.  Prior to the change, brewers in Canada had an advantage over their other international entrants.

How many AHA members are there from those other countries compared to Canada and participate in AHA activities ?

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #37 on: January 29, 2013, 02:39:32 PM »
  Brewers in Canada are now exactly equal to brewers in the UK, France, and everywhere else outside of the US.  Prior to the change, brewers in Canada had an advantage over their other international entrants.

How many AHA members are there from those other countries compared to Canada and participate in AHA activities ?
Tom said twice as many in all other countries. Probably not many participate. 
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Offline tony

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #38 on: January 29, 2013, 02:46:59 PM »
Probably not many participate.

Which would be expected given their geography. That's why Canada should be given preference in a way.
We share a common border with more Canadians participating in AHA events and also given the fact that
we had a qualifying competition already in place and have had so for quite a while.

Offline giant_macaskill

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #39 on: January 29, 2013, 03:10:33 PM »
I understand that YOU did not make this decision.  I just wanted to define the terms 'fair' and 'equal', which you did use.

As far as defining "equal", what dawg said was "provides equal playing field to all outside the country" and that is an absolutely true statement.  Brewers in Canada are now exactly equal to brewers in the UK, France, and everywhere else outside of the US.  Prior to the change, brewers in Canada had an advantage over their other international entrants.
Yes, and Americans had an even greater advantage over us and the rest of the planet. 

I didn't say what he said was incorrect.

Offline tony

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #40 on: January 29, 2013, 04:23:56 PM »
we can't risk a situation where we have the 2nd round judging lasting for more than one day or even for going late on a single day.


Why not? Why not have the second round go over a couple of weekends like any amount of local competitions do sometimes?

Offline garc_mall

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #41 on: January 29, 2013, 05:04:29 PM »
we can't risk a situation where we have the 2nd round judging lasting for more than one day or even for going late on a single day.


Why not? Why not have the second round go over a couple of weekends like any amount of local competitions do sometimes?

Because most of the judges at the Second round are from out of town, and are giving up their first day of NHC to judge beers. We can't force them to give up the entire weekend, and most of them aren't going to show up over a week in advance to judge.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #42 on: January 29, 2013, 05:45:14 PM »
we can't risk a situation where we have the 2nd round judging lasting for more than one day or even for going late on a single day.


Why not? Why not have the second round go over a couple of weekends like any amount of local competitions do sometimes?

Because most of the judges at the Second round are from out of town, and are giving up their first day of NHC to judge beers. We can't force them to give up the entire weekend, and most of them aren't going to show up over a week in advance to judge.

This ain't a local competition. Most judges have traveled and then give up the first day of technical session to judge. That is a lot to ask as it is.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #43 on: January 30, 2013, 01:22:28 AM »
Sorry it took me so long to respond, I spent the last two days on jury duty (I was called twice, did not end up hearing a case) and now I'm behind on several things.  That aside, ok, lots of comments, but many of the responses have it exactly right.

I'm wondering if there is a reason why all first round judging sites are the same size. It seems like if Canadians want to organize a first round, but there are relatively few Canadian members, it would be fine to add a 12th site in Canada with a lower entry limit (like 200 instead of 750).
Wouldn't that be sort of unfair to everyone entering in a US region?  That is, it'd be a lot easier to place high when you're only competing against 200 entries vs 750 (divided by number of categories, of course).
Correct - those that entered smaller regions would have an advantage and that is fundamentally unfair. If we expanded the number of regions to any place that could take 250 entries (Canadian or not) we would get a lot more entries, but we would end up with more in the second round and we can't handle that.

This has nothing to do with the ability of the Canadian region to deal with the number of entries (they can), and everything to do with the distribution of membership.  Even if we had 50 sites in the US that could handle 750 entries each, the second round could not handle 4200 entries.  Right now we are comfortable with 11 first round sites.  That will go up in the future once we are sure that we can handle the growth of the competition, but we can't expand in a Big Bang like fashion.

If we had 20,000 Canadian members and 20,000 US members, the conference would probably bounce back and forth between countries every year and the first round sites would be evenly split.

Because most of the judges at the Second round are from out of town, and are giving up their first day of NHC to judge beers. We can't force them to give up the entire weekend, and most of them aren't going to show up over a week in advance to judge.
This ain't a local competition. Most judges have traveled and then give up the first day of technical session to judge. That is a lot to ask as it is.
Yes and yes.  This will be my 9th conference, 8th consecutive.  I have been to conferences when the competition dragged into the second day, and let me tell you it sucks for judges.  You expect them to fly across the country, pay for a hotel, and spend two days judging beers while the majority of people are in educational seminars that judges also paid for but can't attend?  Seriously?  As hard as it is to get good judges, they get a lot of perks to participate in the judging.  Well, maybe some perks.  Ok, free breakfast and lunch, plus an awesome judging seminar, nothing else. ;)  But the judging seminar is usually excellent.

We discussed many many options before making these decisions.  We could cut the number of entries that get forwarded to the second round (only golds for 250 entry competitions), but this was roundly rejected.  Many 3rd place finishers in the first round win gold in the 2nd, and let's face it, I've had a beer get a 45 in the first round and a 23 in the second.  Judging is inconsistent.  The 2nd round has some of the best, most experienced judges in the world, and the more high quality beers we can put in front of them the better the competition will be.  Which tells me that my 45 first round beer wasn't really that good I guess. :)

Really, we want the most people to participate in the competition as possible, and we talked about a whole bunch of ways to make that happen and settled on what we thought were the best options.  It would be great if we could double or triple the number of entries per first round site, but there aren't too many regions who can handle 1500 or 2250 entries in a weekend.  We considered moving to a three round format, but that would push things back so the first round would be in January or so.  We talked about an MCAB format, but we want it to be all inclusive.  A lot of people who really care about this spent a lot of time trying to come up with the best solutions for the most members possible.  The solutions we arrived at are not ideal for everyone but we felt they were in the best interest of the competition this year.

It was not our intention to ostracize our Canadian members.  I would hope that was obvious but I guess it bears saying.  Communication with the Canadian region could have been handled better.  I take 100% responsibility for that.  Period.

If you really want to improve the situation, and I know you all do, become a judge and then go judge the competition.   It will help us solve the numbers problems at the first and second round judging sites, and let us get through the number of entries in a reasonable time so we can expand the number of entries permitted.  I would love if we could remove all caps and let every member enter as many times as they want.  But for that we need a LOT more judges.  Or a lot fewer members I guess, but no one thinks that's a good idea, do they? ;)

I welcome any constructive suggestions to help improve the situation for 2014 given the very real limitations we face.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2013, 01:24:23 AM by tschmidlin »
Tom Schmidlin

Offline phillamb168

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Re: NHC competition site change.
« Reply #44 on: January 30, 2013, 03:36:01 AM »
  Brewers in Canada are now exactly equal to brewers in the UK, France, and everywhere else outside of the US.  Prior to the change, brewers in Canada had an advantage over their other international entrants.

How many AHA members are there from those other countries compared to Canada and participate in AHA activities ?

I can tell you with certainty, as the founder of the Paris Homebrewers Club, that we have, in France, a minimum of 100 people that would LOVE to enter the competition, but due to shipping, etc, cannot.

That's why we don't participate - it's impossible to do so.

The larger conversation here, as I see it, is not "why doesn't the AHA expand," but rather "why doesn't the AHA help other countries/regions found their own homebrewers' associations?"

Of course the interest, for me, at least, in entering the AHA contests is that that's where the real innovation is. So my ideal would be, 'local' associations (EMEA, NA, CA, SA, AP) would have their own competitions with the winners being sent to a global "World Homebrewers' Association" with a mega-conference in some part of the world every year.

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