Rss Feed Bergfreunde Public RSS Feed
What are you waiting for? Join us today and get out there!   
     
 
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is Bergfreunde?
How to you pronounce Bergfreunde, and what does it mean?
Can anyone join?
How much does it cost?
Are there monthly fees?
What do members get for the membership?
Is this like Events & Adventures?
Why haven't I seen Bergfreunde advertisements?
If I join, can I invite my friends to the meetings and the trips?
Is this a singles/dating/religious/political/pyramid scheme/etc. club?
I'm a wild and crazy guy. Is this my second home?
I don't want to be hit-on by wild and crazy guys. Is this the right place for me?
I have children. Is this the right place for me?
I moved here recently and don't know anyone. Is this the right place for me?
I'm helping my company plan for social events. Is this the right place for me?
My company provides social activities/services for a fee. (like a dance club or travel agency) Can we do business?
I'm on a really low budget. Is this the right place for me?
Do members get free stuff?
I'm not in very good physical shape. Would I fit in?
I'm in excellent physical shape. Would I fit in?
Do you require attendance at the meetings?
I'm over the hill, but I like hanging around with the younger crowd. Would I fit in with the Bergies?
Can I attend a Bergie Social to find out what it's like?
I'm shy and I don't do well in large groups. How can you help?
This is really exciting, but I want to talk to someone before making a decision. Who do I call?
I want to join now! How do I get stared? Where do I go?
What kind of trips and activities are there?
Do the trips cost extra?
How much do the trips cost and how do I sign up for them?
Who organizes and runs these trips?
Am I required to help out on the trips?
Where do most of the activities take place?
What kind of ski activities do you do?
Does Bergfreunde get group discounts at ski resorts?
I don't know how to ski/snowboard, but I might try. Do you offer lessons?
I'm really not interested in snow sports. What else do you do in the winter?
I don't like crowds. What activities are best for me?
I love to dance. What activities are best for me?
I paid for a trip but changed my mind. How do I get a refund?
Where do I get recreational equipment/clothing at a really good price?
How do I find out about those 'other' trips that don't make it in the newsletter?
What's the best way to get on a trip that's already full?
I've always had trouble meeting people/fitting in. What can I do?
How can I find out which other people share my same interests?
I was a Bergie ump-teen years ago. What's changed since then?
I would like to solicit the membership for my own business. Is there a proper way to do this?
I don't drink beer. Would people think I'm weird if I went to a pub night gathering anyway?
I want to suggest an activity but I don't want to be a trip captain. What should I do?
I didn't like the way a trip was run. Who can I talk to about this?
Someone annoyed me on a trip. Who can I talk to about this?
How can I start my own Bergie trip?
What kind of resources does the club have available for trip captains?
Does Bergfreunde have brochures or business cards that I can give out?
Is it OK to post these brochures at work/school/church/Safeway/etc.?
What kind of community activities and/or PR exposure is Bergfreunde involved in?
Is Bergfreunde on the Internet?
Have you guys thought about franchising Bergfreunde in other cities besides Portland?
How can I help promote Bergfreunde?
What is Bergfreunde? -- The Bergfreunde (Mountain Friends) is a year-round, all volunteer, non-profit club for active adults. It is for people who love recreation and fun in the company of interesting friends. We have hundreds of activities a year all organized and run by volunteer members and we are one of the largest premier regional activities clubs in the Pacific Northwest that offers year round recreational sports, social events, and adventure travels.   Top

How do I pronounce Bergfreunde, and what does it mean? -- It's properly pronounced, 'beoug-froind'-ah'. It's German, meaning 'mountain friends.' Our name is the only part of our club that is German. Thus, much to the irritation of those who speak German, it is commonly mispronounced as 'burg-frund'-ee,' in the media, within the club, and even by seasoned members. We call ourselves 'Bergies.' We don't really care how you pronounce it, as long as you come have fun with us!   Top

Are you just a ski club or do you do other things? -- Back in the '60s we incorporated as a ski club, but we're much more today. Over the years the club has expanded it's scope to include numerous sport, social, and travel activities.   Top

What do you mean by 'all-volunteer' and 'non-profit'? -- All-volunteer means that we do not pay our members to lead events, coordinate programs, or serve on the board of directors. Our members put in hundreds of hours, all unpaid, to make the club and its events run.
Non-profit means the club and its activities are not to make a profit. Costs for each event are based on the actual cost of running the event, with NO MARKUP! We must meet the guidelines set down by the IRS for non-profit organizations. We are not in the business of making money, but we are in the business of making fun!   Top

How did Bergfreunde start? -- In 1966 a group of Bonneville Power employees decided to start a small ski club. Soon they expanded it outside of Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), and it became an independent non-profit organization.   Top

Who can join Bergfreunde? -- Anyone 21 years and older. We welcome you! Our members vary widely in age, occupation, interests, and opinions. The vast majority of our members live in the metropolitan areas of Portland and Vancouver. We do care that this co-ed club is a fun and safe place for all its members, and therefore reserve the right to expel a member for improper or abusive behavior. Members can bring guests to most activities and events, usually for an additional fee. Due to OLCC regulations, minors are not allowed at our Bergie Social.   Top

How much does it cost? -- Membership is $75 (currently $60 determined year to year). Remote membership, 75 miles from Portland, is $40. The annual renewal fee is the same rate. The membership year starts the day you join and is valid for 1 year.   Top

Are there monthly fees? -- No. The only costs are your annual dues and the sign-up cost for whatever events and activities in which you participate.   Top

What do members get for the membership? -- Your annual dues pay for numerous expenses of running an organization; supplies, our web site and electronic newsletter, our annual picnic, and rental of our monthly meeting hall. Our administrative expenses are extremely moderate, as we are a non-profit organization. The BSC board of directors closely monitors all expenses, and records are open for review. We run a tight ship so you can be assured your money is well spent. It also provides for meeting people in a safe environment, organized activities that are fun and interesting, and lots more benefits from our affiliates!   Top

Is this like Events & Adventures? -- [NOTE: Bergfreunde and E&A are not affiliated in any way.] On the surface, there are similarities: both have lots of activities each month, and a membership of mostly single adults. However Bergfreunde and E&A differ fundamentally in how they are run. Bergie is a non-profit organization run by volunteers, whereas E&A is a for-profit business run by employees. Our club does not have a monthly dues. Bergfreunde has a minimal advertising budget, which means a much lower overhead. That’s why our membership fee is surprisingly low for what we offer. And because the events are conceived out of enthusiasm and run with conviction, there is a lot of excitement and camaraderie.   Top

Why don't I see many Bergfreunde advertisements? -- To have a big advertising budget would mean that we would have to increase our membership dues with no measurable benefit to members. We occasionally have booths and participate in trade shows (e.g., SkiFever).   Top

If I join, can I invite my friends to the meetings and the events? -- We encourage members to bring friends to the monthly socials so that they can see what we’re all about. Non-members pay a $5 admission fee at the door. Some of our events and activities are free to members (e.g., TGIFs), and are also free to non-members. Fee-based events cost a little more for non-members. And if a trip fills up, non-members may be bumped off the list in favor of members.   Top

Is this a singles/dating/religious/political/pyramid scheme/etc. club?Um... not quite: Though the majority of our membership is single (about 80-85%), we are not a 'single’s' club.
Though some of our members have gone on to deeper relationships with one another, we are not a dating service.
We do not have any agenda or motive, other than getting people together to do fun things. We do not discriminate based on marital status, lifestyle, religion, sex, age or political affiliation.
We are not a pyramid scheme. However, we do have meetings and try to get lots of people involved. It's more fun that way.
Technically, we are a 501(c)(7) non-profit organization registered and operating in the state of Oregon.   Top

I'm a wild and crazy guy. Is this my second home? -- Only if you behave.   Top

I don't want to be hit-on by wild and crazy guys. Is this the right place for me? -- We ask our wilder and crazier members to behave, so this should be a good experience for you also. As with any social meeting ground, there might be a percentage of people whose behavior and/or motives might not be agreeable to you. It's best that you continue to be aware of those personality types and meeting situations, and take your own course of action.   Top

I have children. Is this the right place for us? -- You'll find that we cater to adults, but from time-to-time, we have 'family oriented' events. Among these are: the summer picnic, some camping and rafting events, and day- and evening ski outings. Due to OLCC regulations, minors are not allowed at our Monthly Socials. Always check with the event leader to see if children are welcome on a given trip.   Top

I moved here recently and don't know anyone. Is this the right place for me? -- Absolutely! This is probably the best organization anywhere for meeting people and doing fun things together. And we have plenty of reasons to prove it. Of course, our opinions could be biased. But that's unlikely. Come see for yourself.  Top

I'm helping my company plan for social events. Is this the right place for me? -- Probably not... unless what you seek is to assist new employees who move here from out of town. Businesses are encouraged to promote our club as a social resource in the Portland area.   Top

My company provides social activities/services for a fee (like a dance club or travel agency). Can we do business? -- Contact us at the contact information below for details. We occasionally work with businesses to offer events, activities and other benefits at a low cost.   Top

I'm on a *really* low budget. Is this the right place for me? -- Beyond the annual membership fee, most of our events and activities are low-cost. Some are free (see next question). Generally speaking, we do not believe that cost will be an obstacle in having a fun time with us. However we do expect our members to be responsible for their own transportation, equipment (if applicable), practical personal safety and personal expenses.   Top

Do members get free stuff? -- Yes! For each guest and/or new member...Free 'For Your Information' meeting (once you pay the standard guest fee at our Bergie Social).
Cross-country skiing at most local forest service trails are Free, and we set up trips to those as well as low cost groomed trails at local resorts.
Free admission to our summer picnic, with food and games.
Free leadership party for those members who volunteer in a leadership capacity.
Full access to event information and the ability to sign-up on our website.

Here are some things that are almost free:
Hiking, biking, (sometimes small usage fee)
TGIF socials, Pub Night socials, Movie nights, etc. You pay for your own expenses!
Carpooling (figure about 10-15cents per mile to cover gas)   Top

I'm not in very good physical shape. Would I fit in? -- You’ll find that our membership comes in all shapes and sizes. But the one thing we share is a desire to get out and be more active... with others. We have activities geared for just about every level of difficulty.   Top

I am totally buff. Would I fit in? -- With our sports activities, we tend to cater to the beginning and intermediate experience levels. If you're looking for an athletic-oriented group, you might want to look elsewhere. But please check us out for the social aspect of the club.   Top

Does the Club require attendance at the Monthly Social? -- No, but we do have a lot of fun at our Socials!  Plus, some events are so popular that sometimes the one and only time to sign up for the event before it's filled up is at the Social.   Top

I'm over the hill, but I like hanging around with the younger crowd. Would I fit in? -- Absolutely! If you're 'young at heart,' you'll fit right in.   Top

Can I attend a Bergie Social to find out what it's like? -- Yes. However we charge $5 to help offset the rent of the space.   Top

I'm shy and I don't do well in large groups. How can you help? -- Many people who get started in Bergfreunde don’t know where to start. That’s why we have a For Your Information (FYI) meeting just for new members. This is how we get our new people 'warmed up' and help them find their niche. Members are very good at reaching out to new members one on one especially at the monthly Social.  Top

This sounds really exciting, but I want to talk to someone before making a decision. Who do I call? -- If you want to know about general membership information, you can call our contact number: 503-245-8543 and leave your contact information and someone will call you. All other contacts are Bergie volunteers, who are private people and would rather share their names and phone numbers within the club. But once you join, you'll be able to access that information. Also, come to our Bergie Social and feel free to talk to anyone there.   Top

I want to join now! How do I get stared? Where do I go? -- Click on the Join Now! button and follow the directions.   Top

What kind of events and activities are there? -- We have many dozens of activities every month. Some are seasonal, others occur regularly and are year-round. To see what's going on this month, see our calendar.   Top

Do the events cost extra? -- Most of our events do cost extra, but it is usually as cheap as (or cheaper than) what you could get on your own. Our no-cost activities – such as TGIF and pub nights – cost nothing except your own consumables. Hikes, biking, etc., sometimes require a small donation to cover 'usage fees'. Events like our weekend camping events are very reasonably priced. The club attempts to 'break-even' on all events.   Top

How much do the events cost and how do I sign up for them? -- Each event’s pricing is based on the cost it takes to put it on, divided by the number of participants. Many events have no cost at all. For example, at the TGIF or Pub Night socials there is no event fee, you only pay for what you eat or drink at the restaurant. There is no markup on events, and even the event leaders pay their own way. This makes our events extremely inexpensive!
Once you become a member you can sign up for events in several ways. First, each event has a table at our monthly social, held usually on the first Wednesday. There, you can receive a flyer with all the details regarding the event and sign up with the event leader that evening. Second, look for an event on our website Mogul Notes Calendar, click on it for the details and then sign up through the on-line registration process. Each event is listed with the leaders name and phone number that you could call, and in some cases sign up over the phone Third, Prez Sez is a monthly newsletter that emphasizes special events coming up and informs members of special projects the club board and members are working on.   Top

Who organizes and runs these events? -- All of our events are conceived, planned and run by member volunteers. These are the people who are the most excited about having the event, and have a vested interest in their success.   Top

Am I required to help out on the events? -- Not necessarily. Most events require you to only show up and act responsibly. Occasionally, campouts and other similar events require you to help out for 2-3 hours for such things as meal preparation or setting up for the planned activities. But there’s a hidden benefit to being on a work crew – which is meeting and getting to know a few other club members. It makes the event all the more worthwhile.   Top

Where do most of the activities take place? -- Most of our activities take place in and around the Portland/Vancouver area. Overnight or weekend activities can extend to the greater Pacific Northwest region or beyond.   Top

What kind of ski activities do you do? -- We have a variety of events for downhill and cross-country skiers, snowboarding and snow shoeing.   Top

Does Bergfreunde get group discounts at ski resorts? -- Because of our size, we often get group discounts, which is a substantial savings off of individual rates. We also offer subsidized downhill tickets to Mt Hood Meadows and Corss-country to Teacup Lake.   Top

I don't know how to ski/snowboard/cross-country/snow shoe, but I might try. Do you offer lessons? -- Virtually all winter long! Downhill and cross-country ski lessons are offered for a reasonable cost at local resorts. The club offers cross-country and snowshoe workshops that are a great way to learn the sports and find member buddies to ski and snowshoe with. Workshops are usually offered with bus transportation to the snow sports area. Workshops for cross-country and snow shoeing are usually arranged through the event leader.   Top

I'm not interested in/can't do snow sports. What else do you do in the winter? -- Even though we are a 'Sports Social' club, there is a growing percentage of members who are more interested in the non-snow activities. For those people, we have a wide variety of non-snow activities during the winter season: hiking, TGIF, movie nights, theater, bowling, card games, and of course, our Bergie monthly Social.   Top

I don't like crowds. What activities are best for me? -- Since we're a pretty large organization, it may be difficult to 'fit in' if you're not comfortable in large groups of people. However, you'll probably like our hiking, biking, or even camping events. We also have a few social activities which typically attract fewer people. Check with our Welcome committee for suggestions.   Top

I paid for an event but changed my mind. How do I get a refund? -- According to the membership guidelines, the only way you can get a refund is if a qualified replacement takes your spot. Your payment and commitment is already on the books, so the replacement person would need to fill that commitment to the event.   Top

Where do I get recreational equipment/clothing at a really good price? -- There are a number of places in the Portland/Vancouver area. Among the sports retail chains: Big-5, REI, [more to come]   Top

How do I find out about those 'other' events that don't make it in the Mogul Notes Calendar? -- All events approved by the Board are on the Calendar and in publications that get their information from the Calendar. Of course members become friends and sometimes make plans on their own. Those 'other' events - which are not listed on the Calendar - are not official  approved Bergfreunde events. However, you may find that once in a while, a group of people at a social event will regroup toward the end of the evening at a pub, or other impromptu activity. There's no 'key' to getting involved, other than being sociable, and being in the right place at the right time. Top

What's the best way to get on an event that's already full? -- Boy, who asks all these tough questions?? Ok, this is one of the trickiest things to do in Bergfreunde. That's because when an event becomes full, everyone else finally figures out that it was the 'in' thing to be a part of. Start by getting on the waiting list. Then contact the event leader and see if any volunteers (e.g., cooks, clean-up, hauling) are still needed. Other times, the event leader will open a few additional spots just to make sure everything comes together. Occasionally a spot opens up on an event when someone who has signed up cancels for some reason. In a nutshell, stay in contact with the event leader and try not to be a pest.   Top

I've always had trouble meeting people/fitting in. What can I do? -- Bergfreunde is not for the faint of heart. If you have trouble meeting people in your own areas of influence, you won't do much better in our club. However, since Bergfreunde provides great opportunity to meet people, it may be just the thing to get you out of your shell. But you have to want it bad enough to try.   Top

How can I find out which other people share my same interests? -- Check the member's profiles for this. Each person listed has a set of codes which identify the types of activities that they like. Of course, you can always go on an event that interests you and meet the other people who are there.   Top

I was a Bergie many years ago. What's changed since then? -- Membership has fluctuated in both directions over the past several years. There are higher percentages of non-skiers. There are more younger people (under 40) who have joined. There are more 'welcome wagon' activities for new members. We have this cool website.   Top

I would like to solicit the membership for my own business. Is there a proper way to do this? -- We do not allow our membership database to be used for anything other than official Bergie business. We discourage the use of our membership directory from anything beyond Bergie business. Same goes with any email lists and the website that we run. However, if you feel that the membership in general would benefit, and it aligns with the Bergfreunde charter, you are welcome to bring it up for discussion at one of our monthly board meetings.   Top

I don't drink beer. Would people think I was weird if I went to a TGIF and just ordered a soft drink? -- You worry too much! TGIFs are great social gatherings. You are not required to drink beer, and there are plenty of other beverages, if you would rather have something else. All of the places we visit also serve food.   Top

I want to suggest an activity but I don't want to be an event leader. What should I do? -- Check with people who have been event leaders on similar outings and see if they're interested in your idea. They may be much more willing to say 'yes' if they could count on you and one or two others to help out.   Top

I didn't like the way a trip was run. Who can I talk to about this? -- Start with the trip captain. Please remember that all Bergie trips are run by volunteers, who are usually doing the best they can. Better yet, volunteer to help make the situation better for others. If necessary, you may escalate your dispute with the respective activity director. See the Contact Information for details.   Top

Someone annoyed me on an event. Who can I talk to about this? -- Unless there was some harm or harassment committed, don't bother people with it. Better yet, volunteer to help make the situation better for others. However, if it was a serious offense, start with the event leader. They are ultimately in charge of everything that goes on at their trip. If need be, you may escalate the problem to the board of directors. However this is usually reserved for gross misbehavior. But remember: this is a volunteer-run organization where everyone tries to get along. Most of our volunteers and event leaders bust their butts to make things happen as smoothly as they do. (Plus they still have to pay to attend the event!)   Top

How can I start my own Bergie trip? -- See our Leadership section.   Top

What kind of resources does the club have available for event leaders? -- There are lots of people in the club who have run trips and are eager to share what they know. Start by studying our Leadership section. Next, contact an event leader who is running a similar trip.
Our club also has a ton of equipment which can be used. Check with a board member to see what is currently available.

Does Bergfreunde have brochures or business cards that I can give out? -- Yes. We have our yellow business cards with our website and list of activities we offer. You can get these from a Board member or the Marketing table at the monthly Social. The Marketing table also usually has an 8.5" x 11" printed page on heavy stock paper with the yellow cards attached which is perfect to post on gym or other bulletin boards.   Top

Is it OK to post these brochures at work/school/church/Safeway/etc.? -- Generally, yes, but get permission from whoever is in charge there. Be prepared to answer some questions about our club. If you're tongue-tied, hit the 'Print' button and hand them this FAQ page. If you're unsure as to what kind of location should receive our promotional material, and what quantity to leave behind, check with a Board member.   Top

What kind of community activities and/or PR exposure is Bergfreunde involved in? -- We are part of the Adopt-A-Highway program. We maintain milepost 23-34 of Highway 26 leading to Mt. Hood. Contact the Vice President if you would like to help organize something new.   Top

Is Bergfreunde on the Internet? -- Yes. www.bergfreunde.org or search on google for 'Ski Clubs in Portland, Oregon'. Top

Have you guys thought about franchising Bergfreunde in other cities besides Portland? -- Sure! You pick the city. And oh, by the way, you're in charge. Let us know when you schedule the first meeting!   Top

How can I help promote Bergfreunde? -- Word of mouth! Talk about trips you've been on with other Bergies and non-Bergies whom you know. Talk about the benefits of membership you've experienced.   Top

I want to complain about something. Who do I yell at first? -- Forget it. This is a volunteer-run organization?everyone tries to get along. Most of our volunteers and trip captains bust their butts to make things happen as smoothly as they do. (Plus they still have to pay to be on their own trip!) We suggest that, unless there was some harm or harassment committed, keep it to yourself. Better yet, volunteer to help make the situation better for others. Yes, we really mean that. See Guidelines, section 8 - 'Conduct'. But if you still feel you must voice a complaint, do it in writing to the Board of Directors, via the club office. Be sure to include your name and contact information.   Top
 
     

 

Bergfreunde Mountain Friends
PO Box 19268
Portland, OR 97280
503-245-8543
Email: skiclub@bergfreunde.org  
Membership Management by Memberize™
© 2001-2017 Hill Country Technologies, LLC. All rights reserved.
 
Your session is about to expire...
Login Required
Admin Order Form