February 24, 2006

IMPORTANT: New SEUSKF News (2/24/06)

I received an email from Sensei Jim Parker, President of the SEUSKF, regarding some important stuff that concerns all of us ... members and non-members alike.

I'll cut right to the chase and paraphrase the email (most of it is direct quoting):

1. If you are not a member of the SEUSKF or the AUSKF, you will either pay a higher fee for participating in SEUSKF activities or you will not be allowed to participate in SEUSKF activities. It is not fair for paying members to subsidize a non-member.

2. Members of another region may be required to pay a higher fee for participating in SEUSKF activities.

3. A non-member of the SEUSKF/AUSKF will not be allowed to test.
[MKC's note: #3 is not exclusive to SEUSKF regional events where promotionals are held. It *DOES* include in-house promotions!!!]

4. Dead Lines for registration will start to be enforced. If you show up to a tournament or an exam on that day - you will most likely not be allowed to participate.
[MCK's note: Make special note of this if you have NOT signed up to join the SEUSKF/AUSKF for THIS year, you will NOT be allowed to compete at the SEUSKF annual tournament in the Fall of 2006 if you intend to sign up "on site"...]

5. Applications may begin to require you to show proof of membership. Kendo Card: If Nationals doesn't prepare-the SEUSKF will.

6. Promotion exams:
a. If you are not in bogu-there is no reason to be testing.
b. The sensei of the Dojo/Club should be involved in recommending what rank someone is Challenging. Simply putting down "judges decision" doesn't help us judge where to place this individual and could harm a better player's change of passing by being paired up with a lower skilled opponent.
c. The dojo/club sensei's signature and recommendation is a part of the application.

7. People who are not participating need to get involved to help run the tournaments, promotional exams, etc. This is part of kendo training and needs to be taught in the dojo. Every kenshi at about 3-kyu and above should be able to help score at the table, keep time, run flags & locate competitors. Sho-dans and 2-dans should be being taught how to shimpan in the dojo so that when they become 3-dan and have to judge in the SEUSKF tournaments - they will have some knowledge.

8. To test outside the SEUSKF, you must have the SEUSKF presidents signature and permission to test as well as your dojo/club sensei.

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2006 SEUSKF Tournament
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The SEUSKF is looking for a Dojo/Club to help put on this years Tournament. At a minimum we will need space for 3 courts and possibly 4. This primarily involves arranging for a gym, tables and chairs for the court, tape for the floor, stop watches, medals/plaques (this could be done by the SEUSKF or by the dojo/club), possible banquette, brackets (can be done by SEUSKF and/or the Club). This tournament is normally held in October or early November.

MKC Note: Memphis last hosted the SEUSKF Annual tournamnet sometime around 1997 with pretty decent success thanks to the efforts of Dach-sensei who did pretty much all the work himself. Hosting a tournament is a MAJOR undertaking, but with the number of people we now have involved in our group, it would not be an impossibility. This is something the group should perhaps consider doing -- if not this year, then maybe next year. It's not entirely fair that the same groups wind up hosting it year after year (namely, Charlotte and the Citadel groups) because of everything involved, but it's also not entirely fair that the tournament always seems to be held so far away from Memphis, thus limiting who from our group can go and get some much needed experience practicing with other kendoka. The items listed above from Parker-sensei's email barely scratch the surface of what's needed. The primary factors which need to be taken into consideration are:
1. Securing an area for the tournament (in our case, possibly the community center's gym),
2. Arranging the post-tournament banquet,
3. Securing/arranging hotel availability for travellers,
4. Securing/arranging ground transportation for any groups who fly into Memphis,
5. Sharing some of the costs for VIPs (read: normally visiting sensei from other federations who may be invited)... hotel rooms, food, transportation...

As I said, it's not impossible for a group our size to host this tournament, but if we offer to do it (it would be immediately approved, trust me), ALL of us must be committed to helping out in every way possible. It MUST be a group effort!!]

The SEUSKF is also asking dojos to host kendo AND/OR iaido seminars.
[If we are not willing or are unable to do the SEUSKF tournament, a kendo/iaido seminar would be another great opportunity for our group. In order to pull off a seminar, the same basic 5 things listed previously would still be needed (perhaps minus a banquet) but on a smaller scale. Memphis last hosted a NATIONAL iaido seminar a few years ago which was met with much success.]

MORE NOTES: If Memphis were to host the SEUSKF tournament or a kendo/iaido seminar, there is a GOOD chance that we would get players from other federations to participate, due to Memphis' central location and airport accessibility

MORE SEUSKF NEWS:

We are trying to get a SEUSKF web site up to help post more information. Again your input and assistance is always appreciated. The most important thing is to spread the information that is put out to other members.

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