I received my acceptance letter for "Honu" to go to Road to California on Saturday! I was getting a little worried since they said letters were going out the last week in November, and figured that maybe he wasn't going to get in, but he did after all.
He is packed in my California box waiting to go by FedEx tomorrow. Bruce and I are going to the mainland on December 21st for my Mom's 60th birthday, Christmas and New Year's! This is our first holiday season on the mainland since we moved to Maui.
The California box has most of the Christmas gifts, the "outlaw" toiletries not allowed in carry-on bags, and Honu in his pillowcase and plastic bag right on top. Turns out we will be driving right through Upland on our way to San Bernardino to visit my Uncle Jim, so he gets to be hand-delivered to the contest.
I have to admit I was shocked at the return shipping charges imposed by Road - either $55 or $125 depending on the size/weight of your box. I DO appreciate the fact that they send by FedEx (my carrier of choice), but if quilt shows keep imposing inflexible return shipping options (IQA Houston did this year - I think to the tune of $65?), there are going to be a lot less quilts available for shows. I sent Honu to NQA last June for about $24 - via FedEx. It should be the choice of the entrant how the quilt should be returned. You have to weigh the risks/benefits/costs on your choice of shipping and plan accordingly. Thankfully, for me, my Mom is picking him up at the end of the show and sending him home a less expensive way.
Now, I've never taken down a quilt show, nor had to ship hundreds of quilts in a short time frame, so I have no idea of the logistics of such, but maybe if you require the entrant to send the quilt with a pre-paid return method, maybe everyone can be happy?