Field Improvements - Proposed New Shelter & Shed


For background information on this proposed project, please see the following items:

We have compiled a list of questions and answers about this project below. This section addresses items such as funding, potential additional surcharge to membership fees, donations, etc.

The board wants to hear YOUR additional questions, concerns, and ideas! Please send a note to Mark Weber at and he will forward them to the board.

March 2022 Update

The March 2022 club meeting discussed the status of this project, presented some conceptual designs, and solicited feedback from members.  


We are currently seeking people who would like to make a monetary pledge to this project. The pledge is a promise you are making to the club for funds that we would collect after we get all approvals for the project and we start purchasing construction materials or engaging contractors. Do not send any money at this time.

We have defined the following levels of suggested donations. Donations can be anonymous if you desire. For those who desire, we will create a plaque to be installed in the new structure to recognize individuals who make donations. We would also recognize any donations made in memory of a prior member who has passed on.

Bronze $25-$99

Silver $100-$249

Gold $250-$1499

Platinum $1500-$4999

Rhodium $5000 and above

Questions and Answers

What is the sequence of events to make the decision?

  1. Get approval from the Park for the concept (done)

  2. Share the project ideas and reasons with the whole club and solicit your ideas and feedback

  3. Solicit pledges for donations contingent on doing the project

  4. Find members that would commit to volunteering their time and/or expertise

  5. Develop several ways to fund the project and share options with the whole membership

  6. Do a survey of members to see which funding and volunteering options are favored

  7. If a surcharge is planned, the club membership must vote on it

  8. Get approval from the Park on the detailed plan

  9. Choose suppliers and builders

  10. Permitting, if necessary

  11. Do it!

What ways are you looking to raise funds?

To try to offset the surcharge, we plan to look into:

  1. Seek donations

  2. Seek AMA grant (likely only $1000 to $1500)

  3. Seek help from King County (very unlikely)

  4. Temporary dues surcharge for 1-3 years

What is your estimate if there is a surcharge?

We estimate the surcharge to be ~$40 per paying member per year for the next 2-3 years on top of the annual $60 dues.  This is based on the desire to keep the treasury minimum at around $20K and to build the funds back up to $30K-$36K at the end of the three years. 

Why don’t we just spend the money out of the club funds for this project and not do a surcharge?

The board is considering several funding options, including using all available funds and not implementing a surcharge. The Board believes it is important to maintain a “rainy day” fund, just in case our lawn care equipment needs to be replaced, or other unforeseeable expenses arise. The board will be exploring all options and come back to the membership with these options and which one the board recommends.

If you do increase the dues, even temporarily, do I get a say in the matter?

Yes. Our by-laws require the board to bring to an all member vote for any change in the dues.

What if I am on a limited income and do not wish to pay the surcharge?

We can wave the surcharge on a case by case basis. Please contact the treasurer for further details and we can handle this in private.

I think what the club is doing in terms of free training and an active youth group is great for the hobby and an asset to the community. I would like to contribute more than my surcharge, can I do that?

We would welcome all donations for this cause. Donations can be anonymous if you desire. The board is looking into a way to recognize individuals that give donations (Similar to how the AMA does it for folks that donate to the AMA foundation in Model Aviation magazine). Current donation levels are:

Bronze $25-$99

Silver $100-$249

Gold $250-$1499

Platinum $1500-$4999

Rhodium $5000 and above

Would my contribution be tax deductible?

MAR/C is a 501c non profit organization, so yes, provided you meet the IRS requirements on donation limits

Instead of spending money on a shed and shelter that we already have, what about a hard surface for the runway to fly planes with small wheels (Paved runway, Geotex)?

The board had lengthy discussions about an improved runway. A hard paved runway was looked at 10 years ago and was discussed with the park at that time. It is pretty much a ‘no go’ do to our location near a wetland. In addition, paved runways are expensive to maintain. The other alternative is a Geotex fabric that would run the length of the runway but only half the width (providing both a grass and hard runway). While a Geotex runway is a popular improvement topic, the board felt that the shed/shelter would add more ‘permanency’ of our presence in the park than an improved runway. However, there is no reason why a Geotex runway could not be put on our 5 year improvement plan to look into for the future when our field improvement funds get back above $30K. One technical issue that would have to be resolved is how Geotex runways are impacted by moles, of which we have many.

Can’t we get the park to chip in on this project?

We have met with the park on this topic. Their current position from the park is ‘we have no money, and if you ask for it, the timeline for approval would be measured in years’. MAR/C is also a member of Friends of Marymoor Park (FOMP), an organization that consists of representatives from all organizations that use the park (Dog Park, Bird watchers, Concert promoters, etc). Feedback from the FOMP membership is that we should continue to request money, but don’t count on it.

Why doesn’t the park just build this for us?

That is not the way it works. The velodrome, dog wash building and the pea patch gardens were paid for by the respective clubs of those interests.

Can I help in anyway?

Yes. We are looking for people that have experience in general construction, electrical, contracting or project management to help with this project. If you would like to offer your expertise, please contact one of our board members or send an email Mark Weber, Secretary at

Also, depending on the details of the project, we may need physical labor for some of the construction.

Can we get help from the AMA?

Yes, we plan to submit for a field improvement grant next year. The grant does not have to be issued in the same calendar year as the improvement (for example, if we were able to complete construction this year, we can still apply for the grant next year). Note that if we would get a grant, that the amount would probably be in the $1,000-$1500 range.

If you impose a surcharge to the membership and start collecting money and then the park denies the project, what then?

We would not impose a surcharge until after we get approval from the park to proceed. Also, we hope to negotiate an updated Special Use Agreement (SUA) with the park before committing to the project.

I fear the surcharge may scare some folks away from joining, as the annual fee would be approaching $90-$110 dollars.

The membership fee at MAR/C is substantially less than a typical RC club (which usually runs $100-200/year). We feel the many benefits the club offers are substantial (free flight training, electricity, an active youth group, and a beautiful field located very close to a metropolitan area) and hard to beat, even if we include a surcharge.

What if we spend this money then the park kicks us out shortly after?

Before proceeding with this project, we plan to negotiate an updated special use agreement (SUA) with the park with stipulations that they can not ‘kick us out’ for a minimum of 15 years without reimbursing us for our expenses. Past and current SUAs have always stated that if they ‘kick us out’ they are required to find us another location.

What is the logic behind the building/shelter layout.  Would it not look better if the shed and shelter swapped places (shed would be north of the charging shelter)?

The orientation of the structures were determined to minimize the cost of the electrical work required to extend power to this area. It was also thought that for the public standing at the fence, that smaller, less obstructive structures would be closer, making it seem less crowded.