Kansas City Zoo Photo Club Meeting Minutes

September 15, 2003



The Photo Club meeting began with a slide presentation by Conrad Schmitt about his recent trip to Africa.


The trip started in Kenya.  Conrad shared slides of the many animals they saw, including lions, giraffes, zebra, and so on.  He saw some 15- to 30-minute-old giraffe babies.  The group saw about 175 birds, including hornbills, Abdim storks, and lilac-breasted rollers, and 40 mammals.  Included in his presentation were images of Mount Kenya and of Mount Kilimanjaro from Tsavo West.


Conrad explained that in Tsavo West, the group didn’t see a lot of wildlife, because the park is coming back after being ravaged by poaching.  But it will be a great park in a few years.  They visited one of the first underwater viewing sites for hippos.


In Tanzania, the buses used were four-wheel-drive vehicles.  The group went to Ngorongoro Crater, near Lake Manyara.  At the crater, they saw about 2,000 flamingos, which was quite a sight.  Both fresh and brackish water are available there.  There is one road in and one road out of Ngorongoro.  About five old bull elephants live in the crater, all at least 45 years old and with big tusks, and several young bulls go in and out of the crater.  The female elephants and babies do not go in the crater.


They watched lions stalk some prey and then lay down to rest.  They saw hyena, warthogs, and wildebeest (at least 100,000 -- you could see their game trails leading to the Serengeti).  They also saw golden jackals, night herons, and hartebeest, with horns in the shape of a heart.  A black-breasted bustard gave a good lesson in camouflage.  The group caught the tail end of the great migration of the wildebeest.

Conrad showed a picture of an oldupai plant.  Olduvai Gorge was really named after this plant, but the Germans messed up the name, so now it is known as Olduvai.  The tour group stopped there on the way to the Serengeti.  It had a nice museum and the group spent an hour or two there.


One of Conrad’s images showed a herd of impala – about 25, with one male and the rest females and young adults.  He had images of both reticulated and Masai giraffes.  He said he saw only one rhino, from pretty far away.  He showed a picture of a baby elephant, probably less than three weeks old.  He saw another one that was probably under a week old.  The image of cheetahs was actually taken near an airstrip.  It was a mother with three cubs.


Conrad also passed around a couple of photo albums of the trip.  He said it was a great trip; there were 19 people in the group, with ages ranging from about 35 to 71.  There were a few minor incidents, as always.  Conrad especially enjoyed the trip since he had never been to East Africa before.


He asked if there were any questions.  Marie Bohndorf asked for an update on the zoo.  Conrad said we got some springbok in and five male lesser kudu.  Some of these animals will be in with the giraffes; the others will be with the zebras.  We hope to get more giraffes for next summer.


We also have two young male chimps from Miami in quarantine.  They will be introduced to the group in the future.


We should have a female red river hog, to go with the male, by next spring.


The zoo is currently searching for a new director.


We will probably remove the tree kangaroo in Australia and make that a lorikeet feeding area.  Also, the black leopards will probably go to Topeka.  The red-capped mangabeys will be moved to where the leopards are located.


The biggest news is that our female rhino is pregnant again.  She is due in January or February (probably the end of January).  We will have a Web site up to monitor the birth, like before.


The new orangutan, Rufus, is being introduced to Jill and Euraka.  He is a 15-year-old from Salt Lake City.


After Conrad’s talk, Sarah told us that Boo at the Zoo is being expanded this year.  It should run for four days – on Saturday, the 25th, and also on Wednesday through Friday, the 29th through the 31st.  There will be trick-or-treating at some animal houses.  The domestic animals and the sea lions will be out.


Dan Paulsen reminded us that tonight is the election of officers for next year.  Three of the four officers have agreed to carry on with their current responsibilities for another year.  They are as follows:


Marie Bohndorf – Vice President

Libby McCord – Treasurer

Tracy Goodrich – Secretary


Dan said he would like to relinquish his role as President, so his is the only office we need to fill.  Dan called for nominations.


Jim Rendina nominated Bill Pasek to be President.  Marie seconded the motion.  No other nominations were made.  The group voted, and the motion passed unanimously.  Bill is the new President for the next year.  Congratulations, Bill!


It was also moved and passed unanimously that we keep the other existing officers for the next year.


Jim made one other motion.  He noted that we have never had a Program Director but that someone to help Marie with scheduling programs would be nice.  Marie has done a wonderful job for three years, but would welcome help with this.  Jim nominated Michelle Riley as Program Director to help Marie.  Stuart Riley seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.


Dan then called for old business.


Jim and Bill passed out copies of a representation of the new display booth for pictures that will be used in Deramus.  They have done a lot of work on this in the last 30 days.  This signage will be in the IMAX lobby, and will have a base with two posts, supporting a double-sided display board for pictures of the “featured animal” or animals for the quarter.  Jim held up a prototype of the display board.  It will hold four 8x10 images and two 5x7 images per side, so we will need at least eight 8x10s and four 5x7s for the featured animal.  Somewhere on the display, it will recognize the Camera Club.


They expect to have this finished by next month.  They didn’t put any money into the base and posts yet, but they pointed out that we will have to buy some safety glass in case the display is knocked over.  The glass will cost approximately $500.


Other options for the glass were discussed.  Plexiglas was mentioned, but it would be scratched and need replaced within a month.  Steve Brewer suggested we check into 22-caliber bulletproof glass.


There also will be some lumber costs, probably less than $100.


The prints displayed would not be for sale, of course, but Carol Mitchell suggested that we could add a card that says, “More photos by the Kansas City Zoo Photo Club are on display in Deja Zoo” or something to that effect.


The display will rotate quarterly, but we can swap out images in mid-quarter if someone comes up with a great shot in the meantime.


Will we have photographer recognition on the prints?  This can be done; it would probably need to be on the print itself.  We also could insert a business-sized card on the picture or the mat.


Sarah said the next featured animals will be reptiles.  This is because our summer exhibit next year will be reptiles.  There will probably be a temporary renovation of the Tropical Asia building, and we will have reptiles and amphibians indoors there.  Can we get in to take pictures of these animals ahead of time – or maybe on opening night?  Sarah said that might be possible.


The rest of the year, we will just pick an animal to feature.  Jim said we might be able to feature an area, such as Australia.  Or we could have a featured animal on one side and the area of that animal on the other side.


Steve also said he assumed the point of the display was two-fold – to promote the zoo and to promote the photo club.  As such, we could perhaps include a small card to be picked up by those interested in the club.  This would be a good idea.  Also, Sarah noted that they have promotional brochures in the zoo offices, but for the photo club, all they have is a phone number, so she could use some kind of card as well.  Chris Nederman said we have some flyers that we use on the photo wall in Deja Zoo to promote the club; she can get some of those for Sarah.


It was pointed out that VistaPrint online sells 500 cards for $6.  This would be an inexpensive way to go.


After this discussion, Marie moved and Mickey Norton seconded that we give money to Jim and Bill to finish the display stand.  The motion passed unanimously.


Marie reminded everyone about Arts in the Parks, the auction to be held to promote Wyandotte County Parks.  It is October 24, and they are looking for donated pictures to auction.  An e-mail was sent to some club members about this recently.  The photo can be of anything outside or in nature.  If you donate a print, you get one free ticket to the auction.  You can turn in donations to the West Wyandotte Library, which is open Monday through Thursday from 9 to 9, Friday and Saturday from 9 to 5, and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m.  At West Wyandotte, ask for Sarah Bohndorf.  You also can turn them in to Schlagle Library, which is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 to 4.


Gary Gingrich reminded the group that a couple of meetings ago he had talked about the Wild Bird Sanctuary near St. Louis.  The sanctuary is having an open house on October 18 and 19.  He brought flyers from the sanctuary, and some pictures he took there.  It is one of the largest facilities for bird rehabilitation and is open year-round.  On the open house weekend, you can go behind the scenes and see things such as a nesting pair of Andean condors.  The sanctuary is on 300-400 acres.  Marie said she saw a demo on birds of prey a few years ago at Burr Oak Woods that was presented by the sanctuary.


Chris said that a few people had expressed an interest in taking over management of the photo wall in Deja Zoo.  If you are interested, see her tonight and she will give you information.


Libby said she will continue to collect dues.  She also said that right now we have about $1,200-1,500 in the treasury.


The group took a break around 8:10 p.m. and enjoyed treats brought by Terry Fretz and Tracy Goodrich.


After the break, Kathy Hinkle passed out information about a photo contest held by the Friends of the Arboretum in Overland Park.  You must take the pictures at the arboretum, and they are due in June 2004.


Bill asked Chris to explain what is involved in maintaining the photo wall at Deja Zoo.  Chris said we have room for about 20 pictures.  She keeps charts of what’s there at all times.  She said we could use some new prints right now.  We prefer Kansas City Zoo animals but the images don’t have to be of zoo animals.  We can display prints ranging in size from 8x10 to 20x24.  Put a price on the print if you want to sell it.  We have a rack for matted, unframed prints as well.  You must donate ten percent of any sale to the zoo; you can write a check for this when you pick up your money.  This goes to a Friends of the Zoo fund.  If you don’t do this, your prints will be pulled from the wall.


Libby said we need the Deja Zoo staff to tell people to make the checks out to the photographer, not to the camera club.


Chris said we’ve sold a lot of prints this year – Gary sold four or five, Stu sold several, Chris has sold some, and so on.  The Deja Zoo staff will call you to pick up your money if you sell something.


Chris was asked how we go about putting up pictures in Deja Zoo.  She explained that everyone should go through her or the person who takes her place, so the Deja Zoo staff will have one person to work with on this.  Otherwise, anyone could come in posing as a photographer and steal pictures.

Libby suggested that it would be nice to put something in the newsletter about how much we have donated to FOTZ through sale of pictures in Deja Zoo.


Chris announced that Peggy Lowry has agreed to take over as the person in charge of the photo wall at Deja Zoo.  Chris will get her the paperwork and information she needs.


Do we want to add on our Web site that we have photos for sale in Deja Zoo, with samples?  It was pointed out that we have to be careful about this, since we are a nonprofit organization.  We could put something simple on the Web site, such as that photos are available for sale at the Deja Zoo gift shop, but that’s about all we should say.


Steve said we could use some more images for the Web site.


Bill suggested that for future meetings, we might have pin-on name tags so everyone can get acquainted easier.  The group thought this was a good idea.  He can get 100 for about $20.


Steve asked about the status of the laminated Photo Club name tags.  Jim pulled out a stack of name tags and passed them out.


Sarah said the zoo needs some landscape pictures of the giraffes and primates for the zoo calendar.  They can be 4x6 or scanned at 300 dpi.


Mickey noted that for the recent trip to Savanahland, Carol had to pay extra because a number of people did not show up.  He moved, and Kathy seconded, that the club reimburse Carol $84 to cover what she paid out of pocket.  The motion passed unanimously.


Libby said we may need a rule that if you make reservations and don’t go, you still pay the fees.  Or we could collect fees in advance.  We need to get a commitment and possibly make people pay up front so this doesn’t happen again.


The group then discussed zoo walk-throughs.  These are to be held on the third Saturday of every month.  We meet at 9 a.m. at the World Gate area at the front of the zoo.  Are zoo staff people supposed to accompany us on the walk-throughs?  This was discussed.  Dan said he didn’t want a staff person to commit unless we had a good attendance at the walk-through.  Perhaps every other month we could have a staff person take us behind the scenes.  It was suggested that we try for a behind-the-scenes walk-through in October.  Tracy suggested that we announce at each month’s meeting about the walk-through for that month.


The zoo could use pictures of the Cape hunting dogs, red river hog, or some of the new antelope.


It was suggested that the walk-throughs should also be an opportunity for photographers to share some of their tips with each other.  In addition, it was suggested that we have a ten-minute session at each meeting on the shots that people got during the walk-through from the previous month.


If you come to the walk-through, wear your name badge if you’ve got one.


After the group gave Dan a warm round of applause for his good work as President, the meeting adjourned.  The next meeting is on October 20 at 7 p.m.


                            -- Tracy Goodrich