Dear members of BQPA/Pioneers:
As I said in my last correspondence, we have been looking forward to meeting and singing with you all. With the arrival of the Covid-19 virus, this event no longer appears to be in the best interest of you, our loyal members.
Until a few days ago, your leadership team was somewhat divided on whether we should cancel or proceed with caution. With uncertainties as to the nature of the epidemic, some optimism was possible. That is no longer the case. It is no secret that our organization is comprised of a mature demographic. Many of these folks are reluctant to board airplanes or other confined transport, where the risks are simply not known. If our gathering led to even one person getting sick, we could never live with the decision to move forward.
Accordingly, the spring gathering of BQPA/Pioneers is hereby canceled.
Though postponement to later date in the spring is being considered, with no foundation of data, it is not possible to propose a date that is any more secure at this time. Thus, a rousing Chicago festival is most likely our next opportunity to gather, and I'll be chomping at the bit.
It's ironic that the very nature of our fellowship, the pursuit of close harmony, is now working against us. For many of us who are active in BHS or other Barbershop groups, we're seeing a general hunkering down of local and regional meetings; lots of cancelations nationwide. Your BQPA leadership evaluated these decisions, but we arrived at our conclusion independently.
I understand that the cancellation of the Tempe festival will result in personal hardships, with plane tickets purchased and other obligations made. I encourage you all to cancel your hotel reservations immediately. Some of members have been able to get credit for future flights with tickets they have converted. Please do that if you can.
I know our country will get through this crisis, and I hope and pray that BQPA/Pioneers will do likewise.
Best regards and keep safe,
We will be back at Tempe Inn & Suites in 2020.
Tempe Inn and Suites, 1651 W. Baseline Rd, Tempe.
Dates are Wednesday, April 1 through Saturday, April 4, 2020.
Room rates are $85 (+17% tax). 2 Bed & sofa bed suites $95 +tax. 1 Bed & sofa bed suites $90 +tax Call for reservations at 480-897-7900. Identify "BQPA/Pioneers". Reservations should be made by Feb 28, 2020. Cancellations can be made 24 hours prior to scheduled arrival. Please get your reservations in early!
You may want to request a room/suite that is not directly adjacent to the parking lot. A couple folks had some noise issues in 2019. Non-perimeter rooms should reduce or eliminate this issue. Don't forget to remind the desk clerk your room location request upon checking in as well!
Complimentary Wi-Fi and parking. Free shuttle from/to airport. Call hotel (480-897-7900) for pickup. Free hot breakfast buffet, Host Happy Hour, including free beer, wine and soda. Big pool, Hot tub, and numerous options for Lunch available within walking distance (1/2 block). Joe's Crab Shack and Mall across street. Dinner available in hotel snack bar area or choose a nearby restaurant. Refrigerator, microwave, and coffee maker in room.
Tentative schedule of events:
Thursday, April 2, 2020
Golf: Contact Barney Griffin at 480-430-9162 or email firstname.lastname@example.org after January to get into a foursome and tell him your preferred voice part so he can make up a quartet to sing on each tee box.
3:00pm Board meeting
Friday, April 3, 2020
Golf information above.
8:00pm Pick-up quartet contest
Saturday, April 4, 2020
5:00pm Thanks to Charlie Nardin, we will once again be having dinner at The Four Peaks Brewery. Our group we start being seated at 5:00pm. Our space will be reserved until 6:30 and that has been plenty of time for us to have a drink, something to eat and sing a few songs. As in the past, we need to be gone by 6:30. We have estimated 30+\- to attend dinner.
8:00pm The Parade of Quartets show. This show just keeps getting better each and every year! 2019 brought the 2016 International Senior Champs, High Priority plus six other terrific quartets! YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS THIS EVENT!
And there will always be three other singers available to bust a chord just about any time you desire!
The final schedule of events will be posted as we firm up golf information.
This event is ALWAYS the first (1st) weekend after Labor Day.
When: Sept 10, 11 & 12, 2020
Where: Best Western Hotel
4400 Frontage Road
Room Rate $98.00 per night
$7 buffet breakfast every morning is available.
Shuttle to/from O'Hare airport ONLY (free)
Please call or e-mail the hotel direct when making your reservations by August 11,and be sure to tell them that you are with the BQPA/Pioneers in order to get the rate of $98.00. ROOM RATES WILL INCREASE FOR LATE RESERVATIONS! You can cancel 24 hours before arrival.
A lot of people come on Wednesday (9-9) and get a head start, why not see if you can do so too?
There will be golf on Thursday and Friday.
Dave Brady is our golf chairman and can be contacted at;
847.259.3338 or 847.707.2182 or
If you are planning on golfing, PLEASE sign up with Dave as early as possible so he will have a good idea as to how many tee times we will need for each day. Let Dave know if you will play both days or just one. Details follow:
Fresh Meadow Golf Club
2144 S. Wolf Rd
Hillside, Illinois 60162
Thurs Sept 10 has 3 tee off times starting at 8:30 am
Friday Sept 11 has 3 tee off times starting at 9:00 am
$25 for golf with a cart
We will choose foursomes when we get there.
This will be our 9th year at this hotel and all of our members really enjoy this venue! The hotel staff really go out of their way to please us. So if you have not been to the Chicago BQPA/PIONEERS in a while, do yourself a big favor and come on out, you'll be very pleased you did, I guarantee it.
Chicago Festival Chairman
3224 Sarah Street
Franklin Park,Il. 60161
For you people that will be flying into Midway airport for the Chicago festival, here are the directions from Midway via Chicago Transit Authority (CTA).
After collecting your luggage, look for and follow signs “TRAINS TO CITY –CTA”. It is a fairly long walk-probably five minutes or more (depending on age). Enter Orange Line MIDWAY station of CTA and get on train marked LOOP toward downtown. Get off at HAROLD WASHINGTON LIBRARY (State and Van Buren streets) downtown. Descend to street and walk a block West to Dearborn Street and turn North. Look for a stairway down from sidewalk to the BLUE LINE. It’s in the first block, but if is closed there are more entrances in the next blocks north. Take a train to “FOREST PARK” which will be the end of the line (Des Plaines Avenue).
Call the Best Western Hotel at 1-708-544-9300 and they will send a shuttle to pick you up.
The fare is reasonable. Last time we checked it was under $3, but may go up between now and September. I recommend buying a fare card and loading it with enough money to get to Hillside and back to the airport for your return trip. If you use a fare card, you can get a transfer from the Orange line to the Blue line for $0.25, rather then pay another full fare. Please check with the station agent at the Midway station before buying the fare card to verify the amounts.