So, you want to start a local Handsome Ladies Chapter in your city?
That’s great! Handsome Ladies Chapters are run by passionate volunteer Ambassadors who want to help spread the mission of our organization: to support and encourage women bluegrassers of all levels. The Handsome Ladies Board works closely with every local Ambassador to ensure they’re set up for success and staying true to our mission, and there is a formal application process to start an official chapter in your city.
Handsome Ladies Chapters offer an opportunity for you to bring together your local female bluegrass community in support of a broader cause, and connect them to a larger network of talented, badass female bluegrassers that spans nationwide.
If you’re serious about bringing the Handsome Ladies to your hometown, we’d love to hear from you. Please read through the following information to get a better idea of how local chapters operate, including some best practices and tips for getting started. When you’re ready, fill out the form below to receive the New Chapter Application via email.
Chapter Ambassador Overviews & FAQ's
What does it mean to be a Handsome Ladies Ambassador?
Local Handsome Ladies Chapters are led by at least one person who serves as the local Ambassador. This volunteer represents their city by organizing local chapter jams and events with the support of the Handsome Ladies board. As the primary Ambassador, you would be in charge of all the details for your local jams/events such as:
- Securing a venue or hosting at a private home
- Marketing for the event
- Serving as the main point of contact for the Handsome Ladies Board
- Leading your local jams
Bluegrass takes a village.
We definitely recommend that you don't go it alone! Setting up new Handsome Ladies Chapters and jams up for success is our first priority. Cultivating interest and keeping consistent quality of jams is of utmost importance.
Securing a like-minded and committed gal to host jams with you will help set you, the jam, and jammers up for success. If you are not a guitar player yourself, enlist one to commit to co-host with you. If you play guitar, try to secure a bass player, or another player who can help you carry the jam.
How much time typically goes into being a Handsome Ladies local Ambassador?
On average, a local Ambassador spends about 5-10 hours a month building their community and preparing for jams or events. Each chapter is expected to host a jam at least once a month, every month. During your first year of being an Ambassador, you’ll have monthly check-ins with your board rep (texts, emails, or phone calls), have quarterly online check-in meetings (1 hr long) with The Handsome Ladies Board and other local Ambassadors, then annual meetings thereafter.
When do Handsome Ladies jams take place?
Jams are generally best held on evenings and you’re free to choose any night of the week that works for you and your local community. In our experience, a regularly scheduled weekday (e.g. every third Monday of the month) tends to get the best turnout.
What do Handsome Ladies jams look like?
Jams may take place at either a public venue that you have asked permission to use (i.e. your local bar/lounge) or at a private home of your choosing. Here are a few details worth mentioning:
- Handsome Ladies jams are always free to attendees (donations are welcome though through our website).
- Jams typically should last between 2-3 hours. 2 hours is the minimum and you can go longer than 3 hours if a jam is going strong.
- You are welcome to provide some snacks or beverages though this is not at all required, whatever makes you feel most comfortable as a host.
- Introduce the mission of the Handsome Ladies organization at the start of every jam, especially to new attendees.
- As local Ambassador you are expected to also lead the jam.
- Display the Handsome Ladies mission statement table tent, swag for purchase, newsletter sign-up sheet, and free worksheets (provided by the Handsome ladies board in your welcome packet) at every jam.
What does it mean to lead a jam?
By leading a jam, you are responsible for overseeing the order in which attendees call songs (typically either going clockwise or counterclockwise). This does not mean you will be leading every song, rather, you’ll be keeping track to make sure everyone has an opportunity to lead a song if they would like. It’s also your job to help educate others who are new to jamming on jam etiquette and rules for leading a song and passing out breaks/solos (using worksheets provided in your welcome packet). Encourage the group to go through the chord progression before starting the song, so everyone can feel more comfortable playing it. If someone calls a song with words, help establish who is singing the lead part vs. harmonies.
You may also need to gauge the group to see if it’s necessary take breaks to socialize, drink, or snack. Community-building is an important part of our organization, and we like Handsome Ladies jams to be a relaxing and comfortable environment for all. As long as it isn’t interrupting too much from playing time and everyone is having fun, socializing is encouraged. We’ll trust you to be the judge of that.
Are there any costs/fees associated with running a chapter?
Local Ambassadors are expected to pay annual dues of $50, similar to our board member dues. In return, we’ll provide you with a packet of resources to get you started, including two Handsome Ladies t-shirts, koozie, a welcome letter, info about the organization, chapter guidelines, sample marketing materials, brand swag to gift to your jam attendees, and worksheets/handouts to provide as resources to your jam group. We’ll also be providing access to our network of local Ambassadors and board members through quarterly meetings. While jams are free to attendees, any incidental costs for chapter Ambassadors, like providing snacks or beverages during jams, are your responsibility and not reimbursable.
How long is the commitment for being a Handsome Ladies Ambassador?
Our contract/agreement for local Ambassadors is one year long and in most cases we offer hosts the opportunity to renew their agreement each year.
Ready to get started with your application?
Fill out the form below to receive the New Chapter Application via email. We look forward to hearing from you!
The Handsome Ladies