January 2018
                      
Message from our Board Chair 

With each new year our clubs face bigger challenges and greater opportunities. My goal for the coming year is to beat the challenges and grab the opportunities with equal zest! I hope to accomplish this with the help and support of my HCI family.  I am looking forward to the coming year and our wonderful Peer Group conference being held in Branson this March.  Even though I have attended this conference every year for over a decade, I still learn something new - something that will improve my club - each time I go. I think you'll find that being there is a valuable experience for you and your club.  If you have not already signed up for the conference and the FAM, there is still time.  If you  have,  I look forward to seeing you there.

May this New Year bring with it all the joys and happiness you could ever wish for! Happy New Year! 

Valerie Kelsey, CBCD    
  
Member Spotlight: Amanda Hall  
FNBC Bank
 
Ash Flat, AR
 
Amanda Hall is a club director with an atypical background.  She owns a small health club in the area that has a Silver Sneakers Program.  When she heard about the position at FNBC Bank in 2015, she "thought it would be a really fun job."  She loves people, traveling and doing things that keep older people active.  She has 1500 club members and tries hard to come up with creative ways to make the club more exciting.  She rents out a theatre every month to show free movies, she gives away cash and prizes at parties - all of which are themed, and she plans specialty trips in Arkansas every year so people can learn more about their home state.

Amanda likes to use HCI Preferred Tour Operators for her larger trips and finds that their tour guides and bus drivers really "make the trip."  She has also found great success in planning different tiers of trips, offering more economical trips at times that everyone can afford.  While most of her trips are designed for those 50 and better, she is seeing a new trend where younger people (aged 30-45) are wanting to travel with her group. 

The FNBC Passport Club has several trips coming up in 2018, including a visit to Spain with Collette and a ladies-only trip to the Magnolia Market at the Silos in Waco, Texas.

Partner Profile: Hardy's Reindeer Ranch
 
Julie Hardy
Have you ever kissed a reindeer? Okay, maybe this isn't on your bucket list, but Julie Hardy of Hardy's Reindeer Ranch believes that you will be so fascinated by her reindeer that you won't want to leave. In fact, she says, "the adults love the reindeer more than the kids do!" And after having done the 2-day, 3-night mystery trip, "many can't wait to come back and do it again," she says.

Mark & Julie Hardy love to tell their story. They started the Reindeer Ranch in 1995 when they purchased their first two reindeer to help sell Christmas trees on their farm. Two years later they went to Palmer, Alaska and spent a week on a reindeer farm before purchasing 13 more of the lovable animals and flying them home to Illinois. Since then, the Hardy's have created a unique, year-round interactive mystery experience - full of clues, prizes and surprises - for visitors from all over the world on their 80-acre working farm. In addition to the corn maze, cookouts and hayrides, they offer Branson-style entertainment in their saloon-themed banquet hall, complete with music, comedy and audience participation to give their guests a delicious and fun experience.

Julie creates specialized themed packages for groups with hub and sp oke itineraries and great attractions throughout Central Illinois. The Reindeer Ranch is located just 120 miles south of Chicago and 190 miles north of St. Louis in Rantoul, Illinois.  Plan a trip to the Reindeer Ranch that will engage and delight your customers.  You can reach her at   reindeerranch@hotmail.com or 217-8 93- 3 407.  
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