S.T.A.R.

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Fan Club
Name: S.T.A.R. (Star Trek Association for Revival)
Dates: 1972-1974??
Founder(s): George Christman, Margaret Basta and Laura Basta
Leadership:
Country based in:
Focus: Star Trek: TOS
External Links:
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logo from Star-Borne

S.T.A.R. (Star Trek Association for Revival) was an organization of fans created in 1972 with "the main purpose ....to revive Star Trek. A more general purpose is the promotion of science fiction."

an ad in the third 1973 Equicon progress report

At one point there were 160 local chapters; one that is still active: and S.T.A.R.'s mailing list grew to 25,000. Subscription to the newsletter, Star-Borne, constituted membership in STAR. [1]

Some S.T.A.R. clubs later morphed into more general media and science fiction clubs. S.T.A.R. San Diego is one example.

Some S.T.A.R. Chapters

There were, at one point, 160 local chapters. Below is just a handful.

Newsletters

S.T.A.R. began publishing a newsletter in 1972 called Star-Borne. While the first issue had a relatively modest circulation of 2000 copies, membership grew.

cover of issue #6/7 in which the editors explain that this issue is twice as big as Star-Borne and costs twice as much. They also note that membership to the club has doubled since "the New York convention."
The rise and fall of STAR can be traced through its newsletter. Star-Borne 1 came out in May 1972. The newsletter declared that "Star-Borne will be published monthly." In its pages, the newsletter published formal guidelines for writing letters to Paramount to urge that Star Trek be put back on the air. The letter campaign was STAR's reason for being, and STAR spread the word successfully. .....The next issue of Star-Borne was the June/July 1972 issue. The editors announced a change in publication schedule, saying "Star-Borne will now come out on the average of every six weeks....The last known issue of Star-Borne (Vol. 2, No. 13), came out in June. This issue carried an announcement of the first British Star Trek Convention. More to the point, the editors inserted the following statement: "We're trying to keep S-B on a bi-monthly schedule, but at times, it's impossible. And for those who were aware of what is going on, you know why we're lucky to have even this one out. After this, the Star Trek Association for Revival slowly faded into fan history. [2]
a 1974 flyer

The newsletter ceased publishing in 1974. Still hopeful about continuing the club, STAR issued a membership guidebook in 1975 which gave details about the club's origins and spoke frankly of its purpose, activities, and problems which resulted from the association's phenomenal growth. [3]

S.T.A.R. 1973 year club membership card. This card was lovingly preserved in a fan's Star Trek scrapbook.

Several local chapters also publishing newsletters as well, such as Menagerie from S.T.A.R. San Diego, Stardate the newsletter of the Sacramento Valley Chapter of S.T.A.R., One Trek Mind, the newsletter of the Boston Chapter of S.T.A.R. and The Andromedan Log of the Lincoln Nebraska Chapter. [4]

The Rise and Fall

Joan Marie Verba's historical timeline, Boldly Writing, goes into some detail about the rise and fall of what the author calls an early influential organization:

cover of the membership book, artist Don Royal. This is the fourth printing, 20 pages, cartoons reprinted from Star-Borne by Cory Correll.
As STAR grew, its workload increased. In order to streamline STAR's functions, the club legally incorporated itself in the state of Michigan, and formed a steering committee called STAR Central. (George Christman was not listed as a member at this time; STAR Central consisted of Laura and Margaret Basta, plus nine others.) However, even this measure—unprecedented in Star Trek fandom— was unable to stop the collapse. STAR Central had faded away by the end of 1975.

Two chapters continued operating: the Boston Star Trek Association (until the 1990s) and S.T.A.R. San Diego (still active as of 2012).

References

  1. The Greatest Show in the Universe, Harvard Crimson Star (1973)
  2. from Boldly Writing
  3. from Boldly Writing
  4. Star Base Andromeda