So… you want to plan a rally! Congratulations! It’s a big undertaking and we’re behind you all the way!
These simple guidelines streamline the process, make life a little less daunting, and help ensure that our rallies meet a high standard of consistency and safety. Don’t forget; we’re here to help! Feel free to contact your Prime MINIster, the MINIster of Logistics or any other officer with any questions you may have. And let us know when you’re planning a dry run!
Rally Master Rules
We ask that you be a club member for one full calendar year before you can host a rally. Why? Because after a year, you’ll have seen what our events are like, the level of detail that goes into planning them, and the types of motorists who make up our membership. You’ll find it’s easier to create your rally when you know the audience.
Many rally masters plan their routes using their GPS software or Google Maps. How you choose to plan your rally is entirely up to you. Some rally masters use a GPS with an uploaded route to help them navigate during the rally. Either way, a navigator is strongly suggested in order to help you safely communicate each turn while driving. PhillyMINI has Cartographers who are willing to help you out with your GPX file, if you need assistance.
Route sheets are a necessity to ensure safety. One route sheet must be provided to every car on a rally. You are free to create your own and, at minimum, you need to include the following items:
- The direction of the turn
- The street name
- The mileage point of the turn including zero-out locations and final mileage*
- Any hazards such as speed bumps, hazardous road features, areas where cross traffic does not stop
- Tulip diagrams are optional, but the diagrams do help illustrate the turns.
*While different MINIs will have different mileage due to variances in tire size and inflation, these general mileage guidelines will help in the rare event that someone becomes lost.
Route sheet assistance is also available if this is not your forte. Please provide a digital copy of the route sheet to an officer so that we can keep it for our archives!
Route Sheet Printing
Please print one route sheet for each car on the rally. Please print them single sided, in black and white. Provide the MINIster of Finance with a copy of your route sheet receipt. You will be reimbursed for this expense!
Goody bags are one of our biggest expenditures and there is a cap to what we can spend. Touch base with the Prime MINIster or MINIster of Finance to find out what the cap is before making lots of purchases.
We work with a variety of graphic artists to complete our designs. The officer in charge of cling art will contact you as soon as possible so we can bring your vision to life!
A few days before your rally, a MINIster of Membership or another officer will provide you with the names of any non-members signed up to attend your rally and they will provide you with a liability waiver. This agreement between you and any attendee who is not a full PhillyMINI member holds you and the club harmless from any incident that may occur.
Please have any non-members sign the waiver, collect a $5 non-member attendance fee, and place both the cash and the waivers in the bag with the cling money on the day of the event.
PhillyMINI is full of people who love to help! We have volunteers who can help you check people in, hand out route sheets, sell clings, and perform other tasks. Let us know if you need any help on the day of, from checking people in and handing out goody bags to helping park cars at any of the break locations.
Telling The World
Once all the hard work has been done, you’ll want to tell the world! You will be contacted by the officer responsible for posting your event well in advance of when the information is needed. Details we will need:
- The date, start time, starting location
- Estimated end time and location
- A Google Maps link to the starting location (preferably the short URL)
- A few paragraphs describing your rally. What will they see? Check out past events on the calendar feature of our forum for ideas.
- Estimated leg lengths and total mileage
- Any special notes, such as bathroom availability at rest points
- Any items that participants should bring. We usually suggested a snack, drink, camera, some cash, and FRS radios. Please note anything else that may be required.
Tips to creating a safe rally:
Right turns are easier for large groups to navigate. It isn’t logistically possible to create a rally consisting of only right turns but, when possible, try to avoid left turns at red lights, when crossing cross major roadways, and where visibility is low. Sometimes, it is necessary to cross a major highway or navigate a less-than-ideal intersection. If extra care should be taken at a specific location, please note it on the route sheet.
When scheduling your rally with the Prime MINIsters, check local websites related to tourism, 5Ks, races involving bicycles and runners. While we can’t always anticipate major events and traffic alterations as a result of community events, we do try to avoid overlap when possible.
Have fellow MINIacs join you on dry runs, especially a few well-seasoned ralliers and fellow rally masters! It’s always helpful to have veteran rally planners on your side. Having several cars that know the route and are spaced throughout the pack reduces the number of times the group needs to re-queue and helps ease anxiety when pace-cars slow the pack. Not only can they help you feel more at ease and answer any questions you might have, but they can help promote your rally with a glowing recommendation!
If you have people who know the route, ask a few of them to stagger throughout the pack. We call them Marshalls. You can even get creative and provide them with little antenna flags made from ribbon and pipe cleaners.
Dry runs are the responsibility of the rally master and are not official PhillyMINI events. We don’t particularly care how to coordinate your dry runs. We encourage you to use the “members only” areas of the forum when posting the opportunity to ensure that you have experienced rally-goers present.
Run your route one last time a week before rally. Road closures, maintenance, potholes, and other obstructions can impede your path and it’s always good to have one last (and recent) glance.
Planning a rally is a blast and few things are better than ending the day with a group of people who are thrilled to be together and enjoy some fun times. The process should be fun and if it becomes stressful, reach out to an officer! We’re happy to help you out.