[vendtalk] FW: May Fly-in (Please Forward)

Kevan Worley kevanworley at blindmerchants.org
Tue Apr 21 18:11:40 UTC 2009

Greetings colleagues, as you know the National Association of Blind
Merchants is a full partner in the advocacy work of the Blind
Entrepreneurial Alliance. As many of you know, we are planning a Washington
fly-in. it is important that we try to get 2 blind vendors from every state
to participate in these congressional briefings. At these briefings, we will
provide information about our challenges with roadside rest threats, GSA
cafeteria opportunities, the USPS challenges and changes, the advancement of
our large DOD cafeteria opportunities, and much more. Some of you may be
able to get your State Licensing Agency to help fund, as this is absolutely
a training opportunity. We will be educating public officials and learning
about public policy from these public officials. We will also be receiving
training from the Blind Entrepreneurial Alliance, National Federation of the
Blind, National Council of State Agencies for the Blind, and Linchpin
Strategies, a highly regarded Washington DC lobbying and education firm. 


Perhaps your committee of blind vendors has some dollars or your nominee
agency. Perhaps you can join with some colleagues to sponsor a blind
merchant or two from your state. Perhaps you have the personal wherewithal
to attend. I would hope that some of us would be willing to share rooms to
bring down the cost. The National Association of Blind Merchants board of
directors is encouraging everyone to don a shirt and tie, scrimp and string
together some dollars for this very important Blind Entrepreneurial Alliance


Please read in its entirety the following information provided by Sean
Whalen, who is now doing work for our Blind Entrepreneurial Alliance. Please
be in touch with me directly if we can help facilitate the fly-in of vendors
from your state. 




Good evening BEA members,


I am writing once again regarding our May fly-in. I know there has been a
lot of confusion surrounding the dates for the fly-in, stemming from an
incorrect statement of the dates in a previous email. We are very sorry for
the misinformation. We will be starting at 8:30AM on Thursday, May 21, and
the fly-in will wrap up by 3:30PM on Friday May 22nd. Hotel rooms should be
booked for the nights of the 20 and 21 at The Washington Court Hotel,
located at 525 New Jersey Ave NW, right on Capitol Hill. Room rates are $298
per night. We understand that this is rather expensive, but after spending
much time searching, unfortunately, this was the best we could do for a
hotel near enough to the Hill for our purposes. When booking rooms, be sure
to ask for the BEA block to ensure you receive the reduced rate.


Currently, relatively few vendors have contacted me to confirm that they
will be attending the fly-in. It is extremely important that those who plan
on coming get in touch with me and provide me with their contact info,
vending location address and home zip code. This information is needed to
set up appointments with elected and administration officials. If you will
be coming, please either email me at swhalen at linchpinstrategies.com, or call
me at 866-443-0998, to provide me with your info so meetings can be


If you have any questions, or if I can be of assistance in any way, please
feel free to be in contact.




Sean Whalen


Phone: (866) 443-0998

Email: swhalen at linchpinstrategies.com




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