Cave Talk

Cave Talk

Material Information

Cave Talk
Series Title:
Cave Talk
National Cave Association
Publication Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Karst ( lcsh )
Resource management ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )


Cave Talk is a publication of the National Caves Association, a non-profit trade association founded in 1965 by a small group of private show cave owners. These initial members sought to bring together show cave owners and operators from across the United States to promote the show cave industry to the public, to share information and ideas, and to lobby for legislation favorable to the show cave industry.
Original Version:
August 2016
Open Access - Permission by Publisher

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida Library
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
K26-05298 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.5298 ( USFLDC Handle )

USFLDC Membership

Added automatically
Karst Information Portal

Postcard Information



This item is only available as the following downloads:

Full Text


Robert A. Holt PO Box 625, Cobleskill, NY 12043 E xecutive Director Phone: 518 231 5420 E mail: August 2016 n ot too late to sign up for our Annual Meeting But you want to hurry because August 1 is the cut off for early the extra $100 per person Get your re gistration in now! In this issue, read about the French Lick R esort w here we will be staying and how it was saved from major deterioration and possible demolition There are actually two hotels on property a mile apart from each other Both are historic hotels and in fact listed as members of the Historic Hotels of America. membership of Carlsbad Caverns National Park. We welcome them back into the fold and we are pleased that our long time friend Rod Horrocks is the representative for the cave. Your Re gional Director will be contacting you very soon for a report on your cave. It is always nice to hear what is going on around the country, what is new and how your business climate has been. Please make sure you get with your Director when he or she calls upon you. All Committee Reports and Regional Reports will be posted on the member side of our website just prior to convention. You may review previous years activity under Annual Reports and other information under Member Resources. I look forward to seeing you in September in Indiana! Bob Holt Get well wishes Ed Beckler (Natural Stone Bridge & Caves Park) is back home and doing well after getting a 95% blocked carotid artery surgically cleaned out We wish him the best as he recuperate s OFFICERS President : Patty Perlaky Cave Without A Name, TX Ph: 830 537 4212 Vice President : John Graves Luray Caverns, VA Ph: 540 743 6551 john.graves@luraycaverns. com Secretary Treasurer : Bob Holt Mercer Caverns, CA Ph: 518 231 5420 Past President : Steve Rawlings Mercer Caverns, CA Ph: 209 728 2101 REGIONAL DIRECTORS Region One : (CT, DE, ME, MA, NH, NJ, NY, PA, RI, VT) Rob Arey Polar Caves Park NH Ph: 603 536 1888 Region Two : (MD, VA, WV, KY) Denise Bell Seneca Caverns, OH Ph: 419 483 6711 Region Three : (IL, IN, MI, OH) Claudia Yundt Squire Boone Caverns, IN Ph: 812 732 4382 Region Four : (AR, IA, KS, MO, NE) Dennis Boyer War Eagle Cavern, AR Ph: 479 789 2909 Region Five : (MN, MT, ND, SD, WI) Tom Hagen Rushmore Cave, SD Ph: 60 5 255 4467 Region Six : (CA, ID, NV, OR, WA, AK, HI, Barbados, Bermuda) Matt Doyle Lake Shasta Caverns, CA Ph: 800 795 CAVE Region Seven : (AZ, CO, NM, UT, WY) Steve Beckley Glenwood Caverns, CO Ph: 970 945 4CAV Region Eight : (LA, OK, TX) Ed Mayfield Caverns of Sonora, TX Ph: 325 387 3105 Region Nine : (AL, FL, GA, MS, NC, SC, TN ) Patty Perlaky Interim Ph: 830 537 4212 D IRECTOR EMERITUS Steve Runkle Cave of the Winds, CO Ph: 719 685 5444


Convention 2016 Pre sley Mayfield featured on this Texas I 10 billboard urges travelers not to miss their family wants her NCA family not to miss our convention either and needs you to register today because she expects to see you in Indiana French Lick, I N Sept 19 23 Aug 1st CLICK HERE FOR WELCOME LETTER CLICK HERE FOR CONVENTION AGENDA CLICK HERE FOR CONVENTION REGISTRATION Convention Vendor Show The 2016 Vendor Show is coming together and vendors are still signing up. Below is a list of ven dors/sponsors that are signed up at this time. I hope this helps you gather your inventory sheets and your print outs so you can buy during the vendor show! The Vendor show is Monday September 19 th from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM Opening Reception will follow. These are our Vendors: A.T. Storrs Ltd. Calico Cottage Inc. Laser Gifts Characters Unlimited Discover with Dr. Cool Earth Sun Moon Trading Co. L.W. Bristol Classics J ohn Whalen Sales/Mission Imports / Marian Imports SS Handcrafted Art Pichincha Spirit of Nature Inc. OPI Squire Boone Village Wholesale IGES Pikes Peak Rock Shop Stonecraft Collections Landway International Driftstone Pueblo Inc Village Originals Tour Mate Systems


Convention Educational Session Disaster Planning Is Your Cave Ready? Speakers: Bob McKibben and Jim Reseburg Company: Emergency Planning Solutions, LLC Overview: Cave owners are not alone when it comes to experiencing crisis events. Just in the last year, several NCA members have experienced weather and other crisis events causing major damage to property and loss of income. Bob and Jim will provide the tools for your management team and employees to be prepared. Their NIMS compliant presentation will address several emergency annexes specific to cave and attraction operations. Get ready to hear some interesting real life emergencies and participate in a table top exercise. Sponsored by: Pat O'Sullivan, PRO Insurance and Keith Dobrolinsky, Assurance Squire Boone Convention host & more caves to see Bluespring Caverns Marengo Cave National Landmark Indiana Caverns See you i n Indian a


At 88 Cave Without A Name discoverer returns for a visit Cave Without A Name was honored to have been visited by Mary McGrath Curry on Saturday, July 9th. Now almost 88 (double infinity as she playfully refers to her age), Mary first entered the cave at age 7 with her brothers, James and Harold McGrath. During the school year, they lived at Ft. Sam Houston. Her mother would lease a farmhouse n ear Boerne, TX for the summer. The house had no electricity or running water. The family would come to Boerne in the summer to experience life away from the base. One day, most likely in May or June of 1936, James (age 14) came home and announced that "a farmer lost his sheep. It fell in a hole." The trio walked the three miles to the farm with a knotted rope, Army flashlight and lantern to help. When the childre n arrived, the sheep had already been rescued from the first ledge of an old moonshiners' hideout. They descended a 40 ft. ladder and then used the rope to go down the rest of the way. Mary remembers Harold (age 10) went down first, then "putting her toe s between the knots and holding on for dear life." Mary describes the cave as "like a cathedral" and remembers seeing crystals. Their discovery trip was the only time they entered the cave as children. Now living in Alaska, Mary came to the cave to honor her brothers. "I wanted to make sure my brothers were recognized. That's why it is important for me to go back. They were my best friends." James passed away several years ago and Harold just this past January Mary was also determined to go down the 126 steps into the cave "one step at a time." The youngest of six children, her older siblings encourag ed her to try different things. "So, I was just 7 years old, but I did everything my brothers did, I had to do. If they climbed a tree, I climbed higher." Mary went on to work in space technology as a 'hand mathematician.' Using slide rules and graphing, she worked with Dr. Jack Lorell and Dr. Simon Ramo, calculating the trajectories of Explorer 1, the n later Alan Shepard's flight. Later, she found that Alan Shepard splashed down only 2/10 of a mile from where she calculated. After having her fifth child, she decided it was time to retire. She was asked to come back to NASA and work for the Apollo program. Mary spent several hours in the cave with her family. She also came up those 126 steps out of the cave, one step at a time! Patty Perlaky Cave Without A Name Mary McGrath C urry age 5 6 Mary McGrath Curry (seated right) along with her family visit Cave Without A Name Mary McGrath Curry age 88


Wishing well at your cave? Many caves have wishing wells like ours at Bridal Cave that collect coins and donate them to charity. After we emptied our wishing well this s pring we were informed that the US Mint ha s a moratorium on accepting coins from wishing wells. We have been unsuccessful at getting the banks, Federal Reserve or the US Mint to accept our coins. From what they are telling me any coins that have been underwater no matter what the condition is, are now considered mutilated. Ours look good as new. For more information check out this link: Steve Th ompson Bridal Cave WNS Report In Wisconsin, The fungus and/or WNS has been found in 42 of the 74 sites surveyed. In Grant County, the first place in WI to have the fungus, has a 94% decrease in bat population. Texas A&M has been surveying sites across Texas to monitor bats to have baseline populations before the expected arrival of WNS. TVA conducted its annual count of gray bats at Nickajack Cave near Chattanooga. Gray bat populations have held steady and even increased at Nickajack. Wyandotte Caves in southern Indiana will be open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from July 15th through Labor Day. It is operated by the state and has been closed since 2009. A s ilver haired bat in Washington State recently tested positive for the fungus, but showed no signs of WNS. Silver haired bats are migratory, do not hibernate and are active year round in Washington. Although not affected by WNS, it appears they can carry the fungus to other species. The NPS at Devils Tower hosted its Second Annual Bat Festival on July 16th. Activities included building bat houses, information booths, crafts and activities for kids. There are 11 species of bats at Devils Tower, including the northern long eared bat. Patty Perlaky WNS Chair Bridal Cave resident red fox Along the shore of Lake of the Ozarks and underneath the office window of Bridal Cave this young red fox enjoys the peaceful scenery.


Bluff Dwellers Cave makes cave cake Special cake made for the Bunch family as they move down to the cave. Yes it's all edible! The next generation of the Bunch family are now owners of Bluff Dwellers Cavern after the passing of their parents George & Reita Bunch Ann Bunch and Ray will be at convention with their manager Mary Jane Fischer. We welcome them to the NCA! Inner Space Cavern baby mammoth jawbone Did you know bones of many extinct mammals have been found in debris cones which fill former natural entrances to Inner Space Cavern? No table needed for checkers at Talking Rocks Cavern Like checkers? Then you'll love our GIANT checker board, complete with shade covering and comfy benches! Bridal Cave a big hit in the midwest Bridal Cave was featured in Midwest Living 2016 Best of the Midwest and ranked Lake of the Ozarks favorite attraction by Yelp


Sympathy to Rho Lansden and family We were saddened to learn of the sudden passing of William (Bill) Lansden husband of Rho Lansden of Lost River Cave in Bowling Green, KY. Bill joined Rho in at tending a many of our conventions over the years. We will certainly mis s him and send our love and sympathy to Rho and the family. View online obituary here: Sympathy to Lisa McClung As I promised I would keep you posted I have to tell you the very sad news that my sister Carolyn passed away on July 19. She had another episode with her heart and I feel that it was God's way of taking difficult decisions out of our hands. Thank you so much for the continued prayers they mean so much to all of us. And though our hearts are breaking she is now at peace and ver y happy. Lisa We extend our deepest sympath y to Lisa and her family. Hot weather got you beat? Jim Richards All the recent hot weather has me remembering what we did before there was air conditioning (didn't have my first air conditioned vehicle until 1987. One great escape: head underground early AM and stay there until the sun went down. Lots of Blue Spring trips in the heat of summer. In between cave trips, an afternoon at the quarries was an equally great way to beat the heat How is your supply of NCA brochures? If your inventory W e still have an ample supply left in the warehouse! Let Bob know and more will be on your way


History of the French Lick Resort Convention S ite Hotel In 1855 the Mile Lick Hotel was built to capitalize on the abundance of mineral springs in the area. The name was later changed to West Baden Springs Hotel as it was fashioned after the great mineral spa of Europe, Baden Baden. Lee W. Sinclair transformed West Baden into a sophisticated resort, adding an opera house, a casino, a two deck pony and bicycle track and a full size baseball field. Sadly, in June of 1901 a fire destroyed the entire lodging structure in les s than two hours. Thankfully, all of the guests escaped harm. Sinclair used this tragedy as his opportunity to build the hotel of his dreams. He envisioned a circular building topped with the world's largest dome, decorated like the grandest spas of Europ project within a year. The new hotel, complete with a 200 foot diameter atrium and fireplace that burned 14 foot logs opened for business in June of 1902. After Sinclair died in 1916, his daughter, Lillian, and her husband took over the hotel's operation and completed a massive renovation effort that left their finances overextended. In 1923 Lillian sold the hotel to Ed Ballard for one million dollar s. When the stock market crashed in 1929 the hotel emptied of guests almost overnight. Eventually Ballard closed elegant appointments and eve ntually dismantled the building's four Moorish towers. The seminary, known as West Baden College, operated until 1964 when declining enrollment led the Jesuits to close the facility. A Michigan couple purchased the property in 1966 and donated it to Northw ood Institute, a private college, which operated in West Baden until 1983. While the colleges did not maintain the West Baden property in the same lavish style it exhibited during the hotel era, it was relatively well cared for until 1985 when Northwood sold it to a real estate development firm. That firm soon declared bankruptcy and the property was tangled in years of litigation. In 1974 West Baden was listed as a National Historic Landmark but the elements took their toll on the neglected hotel and i t was closed to the public in 1989 for safety reasons. In January 1991 a buildup of ice and water on the largest state wide historic preservation organization, led the charge to stabilize the hotel to preserve redevelopment potential, and attract a new owner capable of restoring the property for a new use. In 1992 Indiana Landmarks spent $140,000 to stabilize the hotel, matching a $70,000 contribut ion from an anonymous donor. In May 1994 the hotel was sold to Minnesota Investment Partners [MIP] for $500,000. Grand Casinos, Inc., an investor in the purchase, optioned the hotel from MIP. The COOK Group, Inc., a global medical device manufacturing co mpany, headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana, stepped in to preserve both French Lick Springs Hotel and West Baden Springs Hotel. Under the direction of Bill, Gayle and their son, Carl Cook, both hotels and their grounds received a multi million dollar ren ovation returning them to the grandeur of the days of Sinclair and uniting them as one resort. In 2006, French Lick Springs Hotel reopened after an extensive renovation and new restored as The Donald Ross Course. With the completion of the West Baden Springs Hotel restoration in 2007 French Lick Resort was born. View French Lick Resort Video:


Monthly Historical Photo graph Alabaster Caverns This is the main opening and how it looked over 100 years ago according Do You Have A Historical Photo To Share? Now that our 50 th like to continue this column to include a photo from our member caves. If you have a picture to share, please send me a digital copy that might include people, a building, or cave scene with names and a description. Thanks, B ob Calendar of Events NCA Convention 2016, Host: Squire Boone Caverns, French Lick, Indiana, September 19 22 2016 The Third Annual Texas Hydro Geo Workshop Cave Without A Name. Boerne, Texas, September 30 October 2, 2016 Smok y Mountain Gift Show 201 6 Sevierville, Tennessee, November 1 4, 2016; Pigeon Forge & Gatlinburg, Tennessee, November 2 5, 2016 ISCA Conference 2016. Oman, November 6 12, 2016 IAAPA 2016, Orlando, Florida, November 15 18 2016 Tucson Gem and Mineral Shows 2017, Tucson, Arizona, January 28 February 12, 2017 NCA Mid Winter Board of Directors Meeting, Renaissance Airport Hotel, St. Louis, Missouri, February 2 6 March 1 201 7 NSS Convention 201 7 Rio Rancho, New Mexico June 19 23, 2017 NCA Convention 2017, Host: Mark Twain Cav e, Hannibal, Missouri, September 18 21, 2017 Smok y Mountain Gift Show 2017 Sevie rville, Pigeon Forge & Gatlinburg, Tennessee, (Dates TBD) IAAPA 2017, Orlando, Florida, November 14 17, 2017 Tucson Gem and Mineral Shows 201 8 Tucson, Arizona, January 27 February 1 1 201 8 NCA Mid Winter Board of Directors Meeting, Renaissance Airport Hotel, St. Louis, Missouri, February 2 6 28 201 8 The Sinkhole Conference, Shepherdstown, West Virginia, April 2 6, 2018 NSS Convention 201 8, Whitefish, Montana, July 29 August 4, 2018 NCA Convention 2018 Host: Racoon Mountain Caverns, Chattanooga, Tennessee, (Dates TBD) ISCA 8 th Congress 2018, Genga, Italy, October (Dates TBD) Smok y Mountain Gift Show 2018 Gatlinburg, Tennessee, (Dates TBD) IAAPA 201 8 Orlando, Florida, November 11 16, 2018 NCA Convention 2019, Host: Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, Glenwood Springs, Colorado, (Dates TBD) Got News? Please make sure you let Bob Holt know when you have news to share with the membership regarding you and your cave. It is the goal of the NCA office to continue producing monthly issues of Cave Talk and this can only happen when you help with the sharing o f your news. Please send your articles, photographs to September 2016 Cave Talk Deadline Please have all articles to Bob Holt no later than August 15. Thank you


Download Options

No images are available for this item.
Cite this item close


Cras ut cursus ante, a fringilla nunc. Mauris lorem nunc, cursus sit amet enim ac, vehicula vestibulum mi. Mauris viverra nisl vel enim faucibus porta. Praesent sit amet ornare diam, non finibus nulla.


Cras efficitur magna et sapien varius, luctus ullamcorper dolor convallis. Orci varius natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Fusce sit amet justo ut erat laoreet congue sed a ante.


Phasellus ornare in augue eu imperdiet. Donec malesuada sapien ante, at vehicula orci tempor molestie. Proin vitae urna elit. Pellentesque vitae nisi et diam euismod malesuada aliquet non erat.


Nunc fringilla dolor ut dictum placerat. Proin ac neque rutrum, consectetur ligula id, laoreet ligula. Nulla lorem massa, consectetur vitae consequat in, lobortis at dolor. Nunc sed leo odio.