June BoD Meeting Minutes + May Activity Reports

MOREBoardMeetingJune2017Agenda-Final

Mid-Atlantic-Off Road Enthusiasts (MORE) Board Meeting

REI Tyson’s Corner

June 12, 2017

7:00PM-9:00PM

 

Board Members Present

  1. Ernie Rodriguez, President
  2. Rob Lowe, Vice-President
  3. Greg Dwyer, Operations Director
  4. Jeff Niner, VA Advocacy Director
  5. Tom Howe, Membership Director
  6. Carlos Alfaro, Activities Director
  7. Aaron Richter, Treasurer
  8. Dave Magill, MD Advocacy Director

 

MORE Staff, MORE Members, and Guests

  1. Steve Dontigny, MORE Executive Director
  2. Jonah Meyers, MORE Vice-Treasurer

 

Item #1:  2017 Budget/Financial Review (Aaron)

Aaron reviewed budget for 2017 Gala Event, MORE’s Statement of Activity (January 1st to June 1st), and status of CFC application for 2018– (MORE was recently notified by the CFC it does not have the proper paperwork for the 2018 application.  An outside audit costing approximately $10K would have been required for MORE to participate in the 2018 CFC campaign.  The Board took the decision to not pursue CFC in 2018 as the cost and effort of the audit would be approximately 50% of the revenue MORE would generate from participating in the CFC; the Board determined that it could re-coup the lost $10K in 2018 through other fundraising means. Given lower revenues an audit would not be required to participate in 2019 so MORE will now focus on a 2019 application

 

Item #2:  2016 Tax Returns and Financial Review (Aaron/Ernie)

2016 returns are complete. Ernie and Aaron will post page one of the IRS Form 990 to the MORE website.

 

Item #3:  Membership Updates (Ernie)

IMBA is using a new format for monthly updates regarding new memberships, renewals and re-engaged members.  Initial feedback from chapter member groups is very positive.  Current MORE membership level is at 1,450 members.  The tax exemption certificate is on the MORE web page:   http://www.more-mtb.org/more-documents   Board made it clear that Board Members, Trail Liaisons, and other staff are using this letter to save MORE money on state sales tax in VA, DC, and MD.  Action:  All Board Members and senior MORE volunteer staff.

 

Item #4:  MD Trails Update (Dave Magill)

Brunswick:  The City of Brunswick approved a budget which included $15,000 for trail projects.  Carlo A. is MORE’s liaison.

Greenbrier & Frederick Watershed:  Dave Kalt resigned as co-liaison; he will continue to assist, but will not be the main liaison.  Joe Whitehair has agreed to step up as co-liaison, joining Phil Van Werkhoven.

Emmitsburg:  Community Heritage Day Festival on June 24th.  Various mountain bike and road rides (Road rides: 10 mile and 25 mile), family events, kids rides, etc. See contact:  Tim O’Donnell @: todonnell@emmitsburgmd.gov

 

MoCo Trails:     

County wants to implement a signage update.  Looking to get MoCo certified as an official IMBA Ride Center.  Action:  Need a volunteer to assist MORE and MoCo w/this.

Damascus:   Four miles of trails built around at a small park there.

NW Branch Trail: Three miles of trails being built to extend current four miles of trails.  Concluded a successful ride w/MoCo County Council member Hans Reimer.

Schaeffer and Muddy Branch:  Pepco is looking good to approve and permit the connector b/t these parks.

Rockburn:  Melanie Nystrom is working to enhance the bike park, applying soil-tac and a new 30’ TTF including a roller and drop.

Patapsco:  Cocktails for Trails was a successful event.  (Dave attended on behalf of the BoD and other MORE members attended).   MD DNR has received funding for a bridge in Patapsco:  connecting Daniels to Woodstock.

Lock Raven:  nothing to report

Bacon Ridge:  Mike Klasmeier is flagging phase III and getting ready to build!

Cosca:  Build is moving forward.  July 1st is Discovery Ride (an “Invitation to Cosca” on the new trails) followed by a trail workday.

Rosaryville: nothing major to report.  McNeely did some trail work days to mitigate the ongoing puddle issue.

 

Calvert County:  Seed money in the form of a $1K hand built trail grant will be set aside to begin building a short 1.3-mile trail on the Church property; this trail will be open to the public and the first MTB trail in the county.  Chris Garrett is leading this effort

 

Item #5:  MD 2017 RTP Grant Update (Dave)

New changes in place for 2017-18 RTP grant applications.  $10K-$15K is now the expected ongoing permitting cost for new trails, regardless of trail length.  That said, permitting costs will not be covered under new RTP grants.  Size of maximum grant is now up to $80,000 per project.    Volunteer labor rate has been cut from $25/hr to $16/hr (was changed to “unskilled” from “skilled”).  Grants are due July 1st, 2017.  Friends of Patapsco Park is likely not interested in pursuing a 2017 grant. Dave is talking to MORE liaisons who have existing RTP grants.  Austin Steo (liaison for Fairland) is out of the RTP grant business.  Because of these RTP Grant application changes, MORE liaisons are unlikely to apply for new RTP grants.  The permitting process is extremely slow (two to three years for permit granting) coupled with all upfront costs for permits make the new RTP process very onerous to MORE trail liaisons.

 

Item #6: VA Trail Update (Jeff)

I-495 Jumps Park:  Big Steel Tool Box has been purchased from Lowes and was delivered on June 2nd.

GW National Forest:  Laurie will take over as trail liaison.  Approximately three organized trail workdays each year.

BROT:  Jeff, Larry, Ernie, and Steve meeting w/NOVA Parks HQ this week to discuss new BROT trail plan.

Lake Fairfax:  Frank Raiti (Lake Fairfax Park liaison) meeting–Frank provided advice and counsel regarding how to support trails in NoVA with Fairfax Co. Park Authority Board.

Meadowood and Mount Vernon:  many trees down due to dry winter/west spring.

Wakefield:  trying to get an audience w/the land manager for a skills area in Wakefield.

Trails Summit in Loudoun:  Loudoun Co. has reached out to MORE for trail master planning support.   IMBA will be involved in a future telecom w/County folks—the idea is that IMBA would design the trail and MORE would build it.

 

Item #7:  MoCo Epic Update (Steve)

Email blast to all of last year’s participants has gone out.

Numbers thus far:  53 signed up thus far this year compared with 97 last year.  Met w/Whole Foods (WF) as vendor—putting together a plan w/menu options.  WF is very interested in providing the food:  marketing, promoting, etc.  Q:  Would WF support some MORE Happy Hour events?  A:  Possibly.  Q:  Could WF store purchase some bikes as a giveaway that would include a MoCo free entry?  A: Possibly.  Germantown Cycles dropped out as an aid station sponsor and REI stepped in right away.  FYI, Trek has purchased all the local Revolution bicycle stores.  Trek is on board to support Saturday activities w/women’s clinics and possibly a bike donation.  For Saturday, we’ve got Salsa, Cannondale, and Jamis on board for demo bikes; working to get Niner and Trek.  Q:  What about Shimano?  A:  We’re working it.  Q:  What about FOX and/or SRAM?  A:  Can look into it.  Marketing details will be finalized this week.  Q:  Can we get MOCO Epic hang tags to market the event? A:  Yes.  New Belgium (NB) is NOT sponsoring beer this year for the Epic.  NB has a new online process this year: one for beer, one for funding.  Q:  What about Sierra Nevada?  A:  get in touch w/Brad Philips.

 

Item # 8:  Summer Festival De-Brief (Carlos & Steve)

A great event was had by all!  Good planning to reserve both pavilions, even though only one was used.  A perfect setting and an excellent volunteer event.  Propose having the 2018 summer festival at the same exact location.  If we do this again at the location, we’ll have a much better idea of what we need (Food & beverages), how we are organized for the event (group rides in AM and PM, demo bikes, etc.), how we market MORE and interact w/land managers and elected city/county officials, the need to improve action on getting all riders to sign waivers, and dedicate key volunteers for specific tasks.  New Faces attended. Board agreed to hold the Summer Festival event at the same location next year. Action: Carlos will reserve the same space for next year and reserve an alcohol permit.

 

Item #9: Gala Event Update & Committee Update (Ernie & Carlos)

Need to lock-down the catering:  we do not have food yet. Board agreed that this is an issue that needs prompt attention.

Beer:  DC Brau is sponsoring the beer at the event. Eight cases.  A:  Will the caterer serve liquor or not? A:  need to determine.  Q:  Are we giving out swag? A: No as it is too expensive and this is a fund raiser, not a fund deplete.  All Board Members are responsible for providing two bottles of wine for the event for a “Wine Pull”.  Donations at the event will go to MORE’s general trail fund.  http://www.more-mtb.org/25-more-years/

 

Item #10: Gravity Soul Sponsorship Request (Ernie)

Ernie: For the past two years we have supported Gravity Soul.  Vote:  Support Gravity Soul for an additional year.  Passed—all Board in favor.

 

*The next MORE Board meeting with be July 12th at REI in DC, 7PM-9PM. 

 

June 2017 Activity Reports

 

Ernest (Ernie) Rodriguez

  1. Several Gala planning activities, ticket sales are ongoing for July 29
  2. Several Summer Festival planning activities, event was great
  3. Speaking at Mappy Hour at Wundergarten in DC about MORE trails and rides
  4. Membership, renewal emails and reminders, 102 renewals, 15 new with Free Bike raffle from IMBA
  5. Worked with SCORE and NICA to facilitate transfer of non-profit
  6. Website and social media support activities
  7. Follow-up with CFC application questions – more at BoD’s meeting
  8. Financials with Aaron and accountant
  9. Loudoun County trails advocacy meetings
  10. Club Ride agreement and sponsorship, MORE gets 50% of tees for trails
  11. Interview with On-Tap magazine Michael Coleman, Trails, Rides, Access, Volunteers and FUN
  12. Ordered MORE 25th anniversary socks and t-shirts
  13. Working with Steve on MoCo planning
  14. Gravity Soul sponsorship request

 

Steve DonTigny:

  1. PHTA Board Meeting
  2. Sound Wall Trail work day
  3. Bike To Work Day Pit Stop Hosting at New District Brewing, co-locate with Bike Arlington
  4. AM Pit Stop with Bikenetic
  5. Lake Fairfax Park Corporate Work Day-marketing materials to Tony
  6. Northwest Branch Trail opening, shirts to Lynn G.
  7. Capital Trails Coalition meeting
  8. America Walks Webinar
  9. IMBA All Staff Calls
  10. MABRA NICA call
  11. 25thGala Planning
  12. Summer Festival
  13. Wakefield sMOREs ride
  14. MoCo Epic:
    1. Whole Foods Market meeting, Food and Marketing concepts
    2. Marketing Meeting, Flyer/Poster development and Follow up meeting
    3. Aid Station sponsor letters and confirmations
    4. Beer Sponsor applications, emails, follow up
    5. Saturday events planning, Bike Demos, Clinics, Rides
  15. BikeReg emails

Carlos Alfaro:

  1. Attended gala planning and discussion meetings
  2. Helped test ticket purchase for gala
  3. Planned summer festival items, asked for help
  4. Gathered a lot of stuff from the Germantown shed for the summer festival and delivered items back
  5. Trail work days at Mt Vernon, continued to keep trails open
  6. Met with membership director and VA director to get best practices from Frank Riati.

 

Dave Magill:

  1. Conference call with SHA re RTP projects and new rules for 2017
  2. Recruiting new co-liaison and project leader for Shed
  3. Schaeffer trail work day
  4. Attended cocktails for trails at Patapsco
  5. MoCo meeting on upgrading signage throughout the county
  6. helped organize ride with county council member Hans Riemer on NW Branch trail
  7. Began field survey and flagging for new trail in Calvert County with Chris Garrett
  8. Negotiating alignment of new trail on Pepco ROW including DNR section, as well as construction support by MoCo Parks, maintenance agreement with MORE

 

Jonah Meyers:

  1. Attended Mappy Hour to hype MORE to the D.C. outdoor enthusiast community
  2. MD RTP grants calls
  3. MD RTP grants presentation development for liaisons
  4. Distributed MORE hang tags to all seven Race Pace Bicycles locations

 

Aaron Richter:

  1. Attended Mappy Hour event
  2. Attended more summer picnic
  3. Worked I tax returns and financial review
  4. Updated current year books

 

Greg Dwyer:

  1. Took, cleared w/Board, and posted May BOD meeting minutes.
  2. Attended & represented MORE at “Mappy Hour”, May 30th.
  3. Secured donation for 25th Anniversary Gala Event
  4. Various event postings to FB page during the month, i.e. Emmitsburg Trail Work Day, Mappy Hour, etc.

 

Jonathon Kidwell:

Nothing reported for May

 

Tom Howe:

  1. Worked with Ernie to send out email blasts to our contacts
  2. Worked with Ernie to send out June membership renewal and lapsed membership reminder emails
  3. Reviewed with Ernie the most recent membership drive/support/results
  4. MORE Summer Festival event day setup and participated in the Ride with Board Ride
  5. Planning next Wakefield Trail Work day for Saturday, 6/24 to build the upper berm for the Power Station Descent
  6. Providing trail maintenance supported as needed to PVC to prep for W@W

Rob Lowe (out for majority of May):

  1. Lead 1 Ride at Wakefield
  2. Summer Festival Planning, Support, Teardown

Jeff Niner:

  1. Order, pick up and Deliver 495 Jumps tool box – 4 hours
  2. Mt Vernon Park Meeting on Way Ahead – 2 hours
  3. VA Trail Liaisons Email – .5 hours
  4. Handed out MORE stickers/hang tags at DirtFest, PA

 

Brad Hawk (out for most of May):

Updated several events to the Facebook pages and provided web/FB support via email

 

Martin Fernandez:

  1. Website maintenance – almost daily
    2. Tracked down and acquired LOTS of documentation from MORE’s early years for the 25th Gala Event. Organizing the materials and have an archive of documents related to the Frederick Watershed, Fountainhead Regional Park, and the effort to open trails in Montgomery County
    3. Have been publishing #TBT articles on the MORE website
    4. Secured moreMTB as a twitter handle – used to be Scott Scudamore’s handle
    5. Working behind the scenes on a comprehensive “where to ride spreadsheet” – will incorporate it with the work Kathy Mihn has done. Need to recruit other MORE members/volunteers to help building the actual “venue” pages; Although a lot of work has been done there is much left to do
    6. Purchased an annual club membership with Ride With GPS – have begun inviting and sending messages to liaisons, however, very little feedback or response. Only Ken Lohr and Eric Crawford from Patapsco have responded.
    7.  Misc. Other items, including Social media updates, communications with members, Track it forward, messaging with land manager at Meadowood and misc. communications with Prince William Forest Park, including re-submitting the proposal we sent them last year.

May 2017 Board Meeting Minutes + April Activities Reports

Mid-Atlantic-Off Road Enthusiasts (MORE) Board Meeting

REI North Bethesda

April 8, 2017

7:00PM-9:00PM

Board Members Present

  1. Ernie Rodriguez, President
  2. Rob Lowe, Vice-President
  3. Greg Dwyer, Operations Director
  4. Jeff Niner, VA Advocacy Director
  5. Tom Howe, Membership Director
  6. Carlos Alfaro, Activities Director (via telephone)

MORE Staff, MORE Members, and Guests

  1. Steve Dontigny, MORE Executive Director
  2. Jonah Meyers, MORE Vice-Treasurer
  3. Jonathan Kidwell, Trail Boss
  4. Nate Fischer, prospective member
  5. Jon Posner, Maryland Interscholastic Mountain Biking (MTB)/National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) & M.O.R.E. member
  6. Fred Powell, Maryland Interscholastic MTB/NICA
  7. Eric Crawford (via telephone)

Item #1: Informational Presentation by Maryland Interscholastic Mountain Biking (MTB) (Jon Posner and Fred Powell)

Maryland Interscholastic MTB is affiliated with the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) and has just initiated an effort to become a 501(c)(3) organization in Maryland. Goal is to set up youth/high school clubs, mountain bike races, and develop youth mountain biking in Maryland. There are established NICA “Project Leagues” in Pennsylvania and Virginia. Spring and fall racing seasons are being established. NICA is focused on mountain biking only. What is the MD affiliate organization looking at accomplishing? 1) developing core staff (leadership team); 2) submitting a winning bid with NICA; and 3) building a local/regional network. MTB teams can be regional or composite; don’t need to necessarily affiliate w/a school. How could Maryland MTB/NICA collaborate w/MORE going forward? MORE BoD invited Jon and Fred to come back with an “ask” of MORE. The ask may include request for social media and website advertisements for MD NICA, financial contribution, volunteer recruitment.

For more information see: https://www.facebook.com/HighSchoolMTBMaryland/

or http://www.nationalmtb.org

Item #2: Patapsco TrailFest (Eric Crawford via telephone)

Eric presented two proposals regarding discounting MORE memberships at Patapsco Trails Festival. (one proposal that discounted memberships asking MORE pay for the discount, the other concerned discounted MORE memberships with an outside organization or donor(s) funding the discount. The Board agreed to make a decision regarding Eric’s request NLT May 15th. The Board continued discussion and decided not to discount membership as it would set a precedent for discounting memberships at events and further assumes members paying full price are actually subsidizing discounted memberships for a select group. Also considered is IMBA requires full membership payment regardless.

Item #3: Membership Updates (Ernie)

Current membership level is at 1,416.

Item #4: VA Trails Update (Jeff Niner)

Annual Women’s Day at Accotinck was yesterday (May 7th). Approximately 95 women participated—a great turnout taking into account the cold, wet weather. A beginners and advanced skills clinic was held as well as a basic repair clinic. Spokes purchased food. Tom Howe promoted M.O.R.E. w/a short presentation. A technical/computer issue (MORE’s credit card reader) was the reason we had difficulty signing up new members (we’ll get that fixed before a future event happens). Perhaps hold a spring and fall Women’s Day event?

Trails/Workdays Update: Successful trail workdays at Fountainhead, Wakefield, and James Long Park (Martin F. led this work day)

495 Jumps and job-site toolboxes were discussed.

A further discussion regarding next steps for Mount Vernon Park is warranted among Ernie, Steve, Carlos, other interested individuals.

MD Trails Update (not inclusive as Dave Magill was absent)

Bacon Ridge: Greg Dwyer attended the recent “Introduction to Bacon Ridge Day” held on April 30th. In summary—it was awesome. The Bacon Ridge folks have done an outstanding job building trails, interfacing with the community, and keeping MORE members and the MORE Board informed and a part of the process.

Frederick Watershed: has held several workdays rerouting and doing trail maintenance.

Fairland: Austin Steo and his volunteers have held several trail workdays over the past six weeks. A new bridge was built and installed by M-NCPPC (Maryland National Capital parks and planning Commission) in February and volunteers have been busy re-routing and improving existing trail to incorporate the new bridge.

Patapsco: continues with the trail work series with amazing volunteer partners and bike shop sponsors for breakfast and lunch.

Item #5: MoCo Epic 2017 Update (Steve D)

Steve recently met w/the Epic planning team. Bids for rental services are going out soon, confirmed aid station sponsors, met w/Whole Foods (WF) reps to discuss WF as Vendor/Title sponsor, permitting is in process as is working on marketing pieces/image production for the event. Date is October 7/8 (Saturday/Sunday). Set-up will begin Friday (Oct 6th), teardown Monday (Oct. 9th). Registration is now live for riders, volunteer positions, etc. Marketing piece is important to get the word out. Meeting w/a potential volunteer coordinator. Also working with a potential trails coordinator to coordinate marking the various courses.

Item #6: Summer Festival Update (Carlos A. via phone)

Festival is coming up soon! A plan and specific milestones have been created to post on social media to build momentum for the event. Q: Could we use BikeReg to support the event so we have a better head-count and a possibility to obtain donations from members? Ernie: The summer festival has always been a free member benefit, a payback to members, so I recommend we not use BikeReg to raise funds or charge for the event. We need to keep it free and can easily build interest through our FB, MORE web page and Trailhead News. When using social media, make sure we’re noting that the Summer Festival is for MORE members and their guests and that it is not a public event. Our liability insurance covers member and guest, however public events would require additional insurance riders. Ernie: let’s make sure we engage w/Stephen Miller to cover safety issues.

Item #7: Summer Gala Update (Ernie/Carlos)

The organizing committee is meeting currently and will provide an update to the Board in the next week. We need to get started building excitement, opening ticket sales and encouraging sharing of picture and video files at: http://www.more-mtb.org/25-more-years

Item #8: Communication Plan with Read Ahead (Ernie)

Ernie: Shared the communication plan written by Martin Fernandez in 2014 ahead of the meeting for all to review. It is very detailed with suggested assignments for Board to share information with membership via Blog, social media and Trailhead news. Ernie Q: Could we create a time-line w/names regarding who posts what and when? A: (Greg): Yes. We will follow-up; there will be more to come on this item.

Item #9: Chapter Charter Changes from IMBA (Ernie)

Dave Magill and Kevin Adams have reviewed the new chapter charter. Propose Aaron Richter review as well. Need to understand how IMBA scores on their chapter “report card.” This is important as the new chapter charter requires MORE to complete a health of the organization survey, so it’s only fair to see the results for IMBA. Ernie will work with one of two board volunteers to develop and communicate a membership outreach and feedback plan to decide MORE’s position with or without IMBA.

Item #10: New IMBA Website and Update (Ernie)

What has IMBA ben up to lately? 1. Developing a new membership program that will replace CiviCRM; it’s easier to use, communications built into it. IMBA has listened to Chapters and reduced the proposed membership dues increase to $39 effective June 1, 2017. IMBA is working with chapters on the Spring Membership Drive sharing all membership revenue and will continue to do so. Effective June 1, membership revenue will be shared 50/50 between IMBA and MORE. Ernie, Steve, Ryan and Dave Kalt met with David Wiens to share MORE’s input and gain additional insight into IMBA’s chapter program. Luther Prost from IMBA’s Board of Directors was also present at the meeting and interacted with Ernie, Steve, Ryan and Dave.

On a related “member outreach” note, we have two, brand-new “easy ups” to promote MORE at future events (races, community events, REI-hosted events, etc.).

Item #11: General Updates

Tool surveys: (Jon Kidwell)

Ernie: Constant Contact subscription paid for one additional year

FB and Instagram Feeds have been renewed—thank you Martin F.!

*The next MORE Board meeting with be June 12th at REI in DC.

 

May 2107 Activity Reports

Ernest (Ernie) Rodriguez

  1. Worked with Steve DonTigny on final edits for Hang-Tags, ordered and delivered to Bikenetic, Spokes, QMTB, Martin Fernandez, Larry Cautilli, Phil VW, Mike Klasmeier, Eric Crawford, Todd Bauer, Jonah Meyers, Mark Zaragosa, Alex Bernard for Germantown Cycles, Carlos Alfaro for all Spokes stores, Performance at Tysons & Baileys, Bakers Dozen (Bikenetic), Big Wheel Bikes, Bike Lane
  2. Attended informational happy hour with Outdoor Alliance, David Wiens and Luther Prost
  3. Working with Martin on MORE’s “Where to Ride” design for our webpage
  4. Outdoor Alliance planning meetings with Jonah and Steve
  5. MoCo Epic planning meeting
  6. 25th Anniversary Gala planning meetings
  7. Trail work at Wakefield
  8. Applied for grants with Microsoft, REI and
  9. Secured 4 admission tickets for Henry Ford Museum for Gala
  10. Follow-up with United Way DoMORE24 and registration
  11. Send out communication plan to current Board Members
  12. Created multiple social media and MORE events on calendar
  13. Created Membership files for Lapsed and expiring membership and daily thank you emails for new or renewing members.
  14. meeting with Loudoun County volunteer and planning commissioner stakeholder for trail access in LoCo

Steve DonTigny:

  1. IMBA All Staff calls
  2. GoToWebinar – Exploring the Outdoors: Partners in Outdoor Spaces
  3. Lake Fairfax Pumptrack event discussion
  4. PHTA Board Meeting
  5. Quantico Epic materials
  6. OA DMV planning call
  7. Phoenix Bikes Makers’ Ball & 10th Birthday Bash
  8. Outdoor Alliance Happy Hour
  9. Capital Trails Coalition meeting
  10. Hang Tag distribution
  11. REI Grand Opening-Rockville -Friday and Saturday
  12. Board Ride w/Kevin A.
  13. Loudoun County Planning Commissioner meeting
  14. MORE Women’s Ride and Clinic support activities
  15. MoCo Epic Team meeting
  16. MoCo Epic event:
    1. -budgeting
    2. permitting
    3. Aid Station and Sponsors contact
    4. Rental confirmations
    5. flyer production

Carlos Alfaro:

MORE Women’s MTB Ride for May 7, 2107:

  1. Changed the Park Permit maximum capacity (also gained a new Mt Vernon Volunteer, Britta S, who is the FCPA Park Permit Manager)
  2. Got Simona a new Sponsor to the basic skills clinic (contacted and got approval from wicked wash racing, 3 ladies to perform clinic)
  3. Got Simona a new sponsor for the Lunch (contacted and got approval from Spokes etc. to pay for the Lunch)
  4. Got Simona 6 secret backup bikes for lady riders (from Spokes Etc. , 6 Specialized Demo Bikes)
  5. Got Spokes Etc. to send Women’s Day Email invite to 40k customers in local area)
  6. Planned to pick up and deliver skills park set and any additional gear from Germantown storage locker
  7. Planned to set up MORE Tent and HQ for event to support Simona.

 

MORE Summer Festival:

  1. Got Specialized to bring a Tent, 6 S-works bikes, 6 Spokes Etc. Spec Demo bikes
  2. Need to get new beer sponsor
  3. Created action plan to distribute social media for invitations
  4. Created Map for placement of activities
  5. Created schedule of events for the day
  6. Will request from board, “should we do a BikeReg like MORE’s Women’s MTB ride?” maybe 10$ donation
  7. Will request from board, how do we ask for potluck.

MORE 25th Anniversary Gala:

  1. Volunteered with Ernie and Greg to get booze sponsors and provide back before next meeting.
  2. Greg Dwyer scored a great with win with DC Brau.
  3. Supported Steve DonTigny with REI new store opening and community day
  4. Attended with Steve and talked to people on Friday 4/30 8am-12pm about who is MORE.
  5. REI was happy we were there! New store looks great for future meetings.

Mt Vernon Park Trails:

  1. Met with Dan Stork April 18th to ask about status, and his recommendation.
  2. Met with Liz Cranuaer April 24th at the Lake Accotink public meeting about Mt Vernon Status
  3. Helped edit FCPA Map April 26th
  4. Continued to Perform Trail Maintenance
  5. Worked with Jeff Niner to get info about history of park permits for construction

Dave Magill:

  1. Worked with Tom Newton to finalize bridge designs and to accelerate the wetlands and erosion control permit applications for Patuxent
  2. Surveyed/flagged several miles of trail along the Pepco right of way in Montgomery county with Pepco and DNR personnel
  3. Several conference calls with large stakeholder groups to advance the Pepco trail
  4. Participated in Facebook discussions regarding IMBA, the chapter program, and MORE
  5. Discussed various local issues on Carroll county trails with county stakeholders
  6. Encouraged liaisons to develop signage programs that could be funded through the General Trails Fund or RTP grants
  7. Attended MoCo Epic planning meeting

Jonah Meyers:

  1. OA DMV planning call and initial planning of a town hall event with Maryland legislators
  2. Patapsco trail work
  3. Donations tracking
  4. SHA RTP grants planning process conversations with stakeholders and development of RTP grants introduction materials
  5. Calls for RTP grants already awarded to MORE

Aaron Richter:

  1. Worked on books,
  2. Worked on taxes and financial reports
  3. Paid bills & VA state registration
  4. Rode with Todd from Sandy spring Bank

Greg Dwyer:

  1. Initiated web and communications plan review w/select BoD, staff, and members
  2. Participated as BoD rep at “Intro to Bacon Ridge Day”, April 30th.
  3. Updated FB page w/Bacon Ridge, Cosca, and Fairland trail work days
  4.  contacted DC Brau & finalized beer donation for July 25th Anniversary Gala

Jonathon Kidwell:

  1. Updated MORE website with upcoming trail work days
  2. Followed up with liaisons to collect waivers from trail workdays

Tom Howe:

  1. Compiled the copy for the Trailhead Newsletter
  2. Wakefield Trail Workday with 20+ volunteers yielded 100+ man hours of trail love
  3. BoD Ride with Kevin Adams
  4. Dropped off MORE Hang Tags at Spokes Etc Quaker Lane location (my LBS)
  5. Helping to support the MORE Women’s MTB Day at Lake Accotink Park

Rob Lowe:

  1. Working on April BOD Minutes. Eta mid-May.
  2. Trailwork at Wakefield April 29th, Assistant Crew Leader and May 7th, Storm Remediation Work
  3. Lead Wakefield Casual Rides 3 of 4 weeks in April and 1st week of May 

Jeff Niner:

  1. MORE Womens’ Day preps
  2. MORE Womens’ Day on-the-day work (set up/tear down, MORE desk, etc.)
  3. VA Trail Liaison general correspondence
  4. 495 Jumps requirements engagement/planning
  5. Mt Vernon Park local civic association engagement preps
  6. Drafted short fundraising article for Trailhead News

Brad Hawk (MORE Ride Coordinator):

  1. No Update for April 2017 – On Travel in Europe for Work.

 

 

March 2017 Board Meeting Minutes + February Activity Reports

Mid-Atlantic-Off Road Enthusiasts (MORE) Board Meeting

Held Via teleconference

March 13, 2017

7:00PM-9:00PM

Board Members Present

  1. Ernie Rodriguez, President
  2. Aaron Richter, Treasurer
  3. Greg Dwyer, Operations Director
  4. Dave Magill, MD Advocacy Director
  5. Jeff Niner, VA Advocacy Director
  6. Carlos Alfaro, Activities Director
  7. Tom Howe, Membership Director

MORE Staff, MORE Members, and Guests

  1. Steve Dontigny, MORE Executive Director
  2. Jonah Meyers, Vice-Treasurer
  3. Jonathan Kidwell, Trail Boss
  4. Martin Fernandez, MORE member and former Board member
  5. Mike Pellerin
  6. Karen Garnet

Item #1: MORE Insurance Overview

Meeting began with Mike Pellerin providing an update of MORE’s liability insurance coverage renewed on March 1, 2017.  MORE renewed at the same rate and same coverage for $14,200 plus and additional rider for the MoCo Epic, costing an additional $2,500.  MORE events are covered under MORE’s liability insurance as long as they are not open to the general public like the MoCo Epic which requires an additional insurance rider.  MORE is not covered for moving features and we need to be diligent in removing or alerting land managers to moving features.  Additional insured may be named on our liability insurance policy at no cost to MORE.  Additional insured are landowners who require indemnification from Memorandum of Understanding agreements.  Mike will research use of electronic waivers in DC, MD and VA.

Item #2: MD Advocacy Update (Dave Magill)

General Discussion: MORE will continue working with MD-Department of Natural Resources (DNR).  MD-DNR protects natural surface trails and establishes policies and procedures allowing access when no damage will result to trails.

  1. Brunswick Rivers Edge and Frederick Watershed: MOU’s have been signed for both RTP recipients; Brunswick Rivers Edge and Frederick Watershed.  Both Rivers Edge and Watershed are working through the NEPA process.  There is another project to sign the Frederick Watershed in the planning phase.
  2. Emmitsburg: Tim O’Donnell in his role of land manager is applying for a trail award to recognize Emmitsburg trails.
  3. Northwest Branch: future increase of trails based on recent land purchase by M-NCPPC/ Additional 500 acres purchased on northwest corner of 10-mile creek. Black Hills would be connected (partially) to Little Bennet. Connectivity will take time as negotiations with developers will take time.
  4. Patapsco: Nothing to report at this time.
  5. Rosaryville: Dave provided an update on Rosaryville meeting with MD- DNR. Previously, trail work and permission issues have been worked through the Rosaryville Conservation Trust.  Issues discussed included rebuilding the inter loop, future stream restoration projects, and possibility of winter closings.
  6. Bacon Ridge: Nothing to report at this time.
  7. Northwest Branch: Open with Shaun Punga and Tom Newton as co-liaisons.

Vote: Motion to transfer $10K of unrestricted general funds into MORE’s Working Capita Grant Fund (Patuxent, Frederick Watershed, and Brunswick). Motion was seconded (Dwyer), vote taken, and motion passed unanimously.

Vote: Motion to move half of the net proceeds ($10K) from 2016 MoCo event in MORE’s unrestricted funds section to MORE’s MoCo Reinvestment Fund. Motion was seconded (Dwyer), vote taken, and motion passed unanimously.

2017 MoCo Epic Event funds transfer (Dave):

Board and Steve Dontigny should be considering how funds would be reinvested in 2017. Steve: Going forward, it’s good to understand the split between spent funds and remaining funds. One idea is to spread the funds around to trail networks in the region.

Winter Liaison meeting (Dave):

All Board members invited. There will be a pre-ride before the meeting. Meeting will take place from 1-4 in Silver Spring. Martin suggested folks from Quantico and Richmond bike clubs attend (they are confirmed).

Item #3: VA Advocacy Update (Jeff Niner)

General Update: Taking time to understand the current issues of all VA trail liaisons. Have met with many of the VA liaisons, but still many more to interact with. A survey email and welcome email has been sent to all VA trail liaisons. All liaisons want MORE’s support with trail workdays and assistance with tools.

  1. Lake Fairfax: A meeting for the VA Trail Liaisons (TL) is in the works sometime after the March TL meeting on March 26th. The VA TL Meeting date and time is TBD.
  2. BROT: On 16 August, there will be a trail survey of the BROT.
  3. GW Forest: Current liaisons are looking to pass the torch. Tom is looking for a replacement, as current team is ready to pass the work on.   Approximately 350 miles of trails. Current liaisons are looking for someone to take over 11 miles of trails that are managed by the Forest Service.

Item #4: Financials (Aaron) *Covered at end of meeting

Looking to push for spring fundraising activities—push liaisons to get additional restricted donations to their specific parks.

Item #5: DC Advocacy Update (Steve Dontigny)

Ft. DuPont Park (FDP): MORE has been asked to lead a ride in the spring (April) for the Riverfest event. Current trail is largely a cinder-based trail. Rode different parts of the trail this past weekend to understand its current situation, to look at alternate routes, and to prepare FDP for the April Riverfest event.   Request to meet w/new park superintendent has been made this week; Steve will deliver MORE’s proposal to care for the trail system in FDP. There is no true single track in FDP. There is an individual who has offered to serve as FDP trail liaison. A big job ahead for MORE to clean, build, manage, and promote the trails in FDP. We have funds in the form of the REI grant ($15K) that need to be put to this project.

Item #5: Donor Development (Steve Dontigny)

Sent out donor contact sheet to each board member this morning; intent is to have each Board member contact individuals on their list. Dave Magill: Do we have a stock presentation about MORE to distribute via email to each potential donor? Steve: Yes, we can update what we created in 2016. Specifically, the “Who is MORE” presentation and the case for support document, though this needs updating. Dave: Need to also update the 10,000 hours of volunteers in our social media so that potential donors can see this. Also, interacting w/our local Chambers of Commerce is an excellent way to reach local businesses and others who support us.   Steve: a powerful argument to donors for funding MORE is that trails assist in keeping users healthy and active; this is a major issue in our current political conversation regarding the Affordable Care Act.

Action for Martin F.: MORE should have a “25 for 25” page on the website to show our metrics, our plan for 2017, and our supporters.  

Item #6: 25th Anniversary Gala (Karen)

Ernie: Updated the Board on current status and past actions. Board authorized an initial $5K to fund the event.

Karen: Committee has explored many options and approaches to the July event. The committee is still reviewing all of its options for venues, prices, numbers of attendees, etc. Venues are expensive. Looking to accommodate approximately 100 people. Committee is looking at an event in downtown Washington, DC. Date is an issue. Target date is July 29th (Saturday evening). $5K would not cover the event at venues we’re looking at. The Loft is where we’re currently looking (downtown, near metro center); we would not have to look at outside caterer at The Loft. Committee is looking at heavy appetizers instead of a sit-down dinner. Looking at a six-hour rental. Karen and the committee will keep the Board informed and updated.

Item #7: Grant Discussion and DMV Outdoor Alliance (Jonah Meyers)

Grant Discussion: Jonah proposed to take the discussion off-line and catch up w/Dave Magill directly.

DMV Outdoor Alliance: Ernie, Steve, Dave, and Jonah rode w/Outdoor Alliance staff in December. Goal was to discuss possibility of uniting outdoor enthusiasts (hikers, climbers, kayakers, horse-back riders, trail runners, etc.) in the DC metro area to see if collaborating on common goals made sense, specifically, focusing on parklands, interfacing w/elected officials, multi-type sport epic events in the region, etc. Ernie: I did not envision MORE contributing funds, but instead, I thought MORE could be a member of the alliance. We don’t want MORE involved in PAC activities. Jonah: The Alliance gets involved in advocacy and lobbying. We could be affiliated, but not financially support. Greg: the concept is appealing and I would ask that additional details be provided to the Board so we can reach a conclusion regarding partnering with the Outdoor Alliance.

Item #8: Summer Festival (Carlos)

Date is June 10th. It will be a family friendly event. We have the venue reserved thanks to Russ Adams. It’s located on the west side of Clopper Lake, in Nuthatch Pavilion. Elaine Hess will be assisting. Action: Need to get this advertised on the website and FB page. Confirmed that we have an alcohol permit. Could we get a demo bike vendor for the summer festival?: Carlos is working this. Looking at Trek and Specialized to demo bikes. Propose we gather swag from vendors now. Dave Magill: there are two activities at Clopper Lake for the family: boat/kayak rides and a frisbee golf course. There is an entry fee to get into the park—we need to let MORE members know this. Do we still pay if we ride in? No. A potluck is a good way to go as the pavilions have electricity and grills. We could have a BBQ competition. Carlos: does our insurance need an additional rider? Ernie: We do not need an additional insurance rider for members and guests of members. Countdown is 89 days away!

Item #9: Women’s Clinic (Steve Dontigny)

Sunday May 7th is next women’s clinic at Lake Accotink. Looking at 100+ women to participate. Steve needs assistance w/rider check-in, registration, and other planning/implementation activities.

Item #10: Website update (Greg)

Greg is behind on his action from the January 2107 Board meeting. Intent is to work w/Martin Fernandez and Jason Ashmore to consider alternatives to the current website. Martin and Jason built the MORE website, Jason is the system administrator and Martin is the content manager. Some initial questions for consideration are: 1) Can we host it somewhere less expensive? 2) Can we edit what is on the website? Editing the website CONTENT is the key goal now. We have 10-15 people with admin rights and each person has their own vision on how/why/when the MORE website should be updated. Jason is excellent at controlling website cost and will continue serve as system administrator. Martin will work to help train administrative users to add content to our site. Action: Rob, Tom, and Carlos, et. al will work together to review the website and provide suggestions for improvements to Greg D. who will present the suggestions, options, and proposed priorities for improving the MORE website during a future Board meeting.

How could we use GIS tracks to map MORE territory via a MORE member? Martin has agreed to update the MORE “Where to Ride” section with heat and actual trail maps.

Item #11: Trailhead News (Tom)

Request has been sent out for Trailhead News content: 25th Gala, MORE Summer Festival, etc. Seeking help to pull content together for the spring Trailhead News.

Item #12: Track it Forward (Jonathon)

Plan is to continue using this system for liaisons and tracking volunteer hours. Until we have something better, we’ll continue w/Track-it-Forward.

Item #13: Membership (Ernie)

MORE is currently at 1,489 members. “Chapter 2.0” from IMBA is still a work in process. Ernie has had several discussions w/IMBA management and believes IMBA is listening.

Item #14: “Club Ride” (Ernie)

MORE 25th Anniversary T-shirts will be available on the “Club Ride’s” website w/some of the proceeds of the $30 T-shirt price going to MORE. “Tees for Trails” promotion on the website.

*The next MORE Board meeting with be April 10th at REI in Tysons Corner.

February Activity Reports

Ernest (Ernie) Rodriguez

  1. Participate in Trails Committee meeting
  2. Survey of trail liaison needs for 2017 planning
  3. Monthly membership reminders to members and individual emails to renewing or joining members.
  4. Various teleconferences with IMBA; David Wiens, Bruce Alt, Antony Duncan
  5. Teleconference with trails committee and local leaders – update on IMBA chapter 2.0
  6. Grant invitation meeting with REI
  7. Grant applications with North Face and Patagonia
  8. Teleconference with UNSELF tracking program – IMBA’s FREE replacement for Track-it-Forward
  9. Teleconference with Outdoor Alliance, Access Fund, Outdoor Climbers to join advocacy forces
  10. Meeting with Boaters Association for participation in kids fishing contest with Steve Dontigny
  11. Work on locations for 2017 monthly board meetings

Steve Dontigny:

  1. Anacostia River Festival Kick-Off Meeting
  2. Dupont Call with M. Drajem
  3. PHTA Board Meeting-LoCo Trails discussion
  4. IMBA All Staff calls
  5. REI Co-op Grant Invitee Reception
  6. Capital Trails Coalition Monthly Meeting
  7. Trails Committee Call
  8. WABA Greg Mullings Call-DC Parks and Rec Bike Park proposals
  9. 4 Mile Run Working Group meeting
  10. MoCo Epic Budgeting and Permitting
  11. Development Master list building
  12. Grant writing and submission
  13. Beth Porter, NPS Outdoor Recreation Planner, discussions and strategy
  14. Dupont/ARF trail recon and repairs
  15. Women’s Clinic planning and permitting

Jeff Niner:

  1. Participated in Trails Committee meeting
  2. Sent Survey email out to Virginia MORE Trail Liaisons to determine trail liaison needs/priorities for 2017 planning
  3. Meeting with Wicked Wash Racing Team to encourage MORE membership/ volunteerism
  4. Teleconference with Trails Committee and local leaders – update on IMBA chapter 2.0 process.
  5. Ride/Meeting with GWNF Trail Liaisons to determine Lee District trail requirements
  6. Planning telecon with GWNF Trail Liaison
  7. Telecon with potential candidate for GNWF Trail Liaison replacement
  8. Discussion with Wakefield Trail Liaison (Tom Howe) re future skills park at Wakefield

Dave Magill:

  1. Reviewed 2017 RTP grant MOU’s, discussed with C. Alfano and D. Kalt, executed same on behalf of MORE
  2. Supported C. Alfano re NEPA review for the Brunswick Grant
  3. Organized meeting site and agenda for the Liaison’s meeting March 26
  4. Reviewed early draft 2017 MoCoEpic budget and plan with Steve D.
  5. Organized a Northwest Branch advocacy effort with five MORE members to support the newly opened trail
  6. Reviewed and supported MoCo Parks plans for an alternate trail connection from Black Hills to within two miles of Little Bennett
  7. Held informational call with expanded trails committee on changes at IMBA
  8. Held formal trails committee meeting – TC approved transferring $10k of the Grants Working Capital Fund to Patuxent for three permitting contracts
  9. Signed $10k of permitting contracts for the Patuxent project
  10. Helped resolve/document transfer of all remaining funds in the Patapsco Special Purpose Funds to Friends of PVSP.

Jonah Meyers:

  1. Attended/volunteered at Winter Party
  2. Fairland corridor clearing trail work day
  3. Teleconference with Outdoor Alliance, Access Fund, Outdoor Climbers to join advocacy forces
  4. Donations deposits and PayPal tracking
  5. Maryland RTP procedures call for Brunswick and Frederick 2017 grants
  6. Maryland RTP procurement for Patuxent 2015-6 grants

Aaron Richter:

  1. Winter party
  2. MOCO epic books
  3. Closed old credit cards
  4. Opened money market account
  5. Worked on closing 2016 books
  6. 2017 bookkeeping
  7. Filed MD and VA documents

Rob Lowe:

  1. Transition Meeting Attended Jan 2017
  2. Lead Rides (6) Regular, 1 weekend Ride
  3. Ad-hoc Puddle trail work at Wakefield
  4. Winter Party – Setup, Tear down, Clean-up
  5. Anniversary Party – Attended Calls, Reviews Materials, Searched for Locations
  6. 2x Executive Sessions with Ernie and Steve
  7. Outreach at Shops
  8. Team BikenetiCX Donation – $1500 Check (2017), + 2 Events in 2016 Raised near $800 Profits.

Greg Dwyer:

  1. Supported and attended the MORE Winter Meeting, posted meeting reminder on the MORE FB page.
  2.  Circulated to the Board for review, updated, and posted to the website (thanks Martin!) MORE’s Club Rules document, incorporating the new MD and VA/DC Trails Advocacy positions.
  3.  Met with owner of Shine Massage and Wellness of Riverdale, MD and received in-kind donation for future MORE event (Summer meeting recognition?).
  4.  Attended/participated in Fairland trail work day and posted two updates (before and after) to the MORE FB page regarding the workday.

Brad Hawk:

  1. Working on new system to track rides, ride leaders and sweeps in conjunction with posted rides on MORE calendar.
  2. Communication and support with Jo, Simona, Kathy and Anne for the MORE ladies Spring/Summer Event.
  3. Two trail workdays at Accotink clearing deadfall and closing rogue trails.
  4. Accotink stream clean up day. Removed garbage and debris.
  5. Posted Trail workdays, rides and events on Facebook page and MORE calendar.
  6. Winter Party / set-up

Jonathon Kidwell:

  1. Winter party
  2. Track it Forward data entry and close out for 2016
  3. Data entry and follow-ups for 2017 workdays
  4. Trails Committee call
  5. GWNF Ride with Ernie and Jeff

Tom Howe:

  1. Request for Trailhead Newsletter content
  2. Work with Ernie and Steve to understand CiviCRM
  3. Work with Ernie to help with monthly email reminders for renewals and thank you emails that are currently sent
  4. Complete any remaining transitioning from Jason Miller

 

Request for Expression of Interest – MoCo

Our friends at Montgomery National Capital Park and Planning Commission are seeking bids to provide Bike Rentals within Montgomery County Parks.

Please see attached document for details.

Submission deadline is February 13, 2017 at 11:00 AM.

 

January 2017 Annual MORE Board Meeting Minutes

Mid-Atlantic-Off Road Enthusiasts (MORE) Annual Board Transition Meeting

Offices of Competitive Power Ventures

8403 Colesville Road

Silver Spring, MD

 10:15AM-4:00PM

MORE-2017-Transition-Presentation-Webpage

Board Members Present

  1. Ernie Rodriguez, President
  2. Rob Lowe, Vice-President
  3. Aaron Richter, Treasurer
  4. Greg Dwyer, Operations Director
  5. Dave Magill, MD Advocacy Director
  6. Jeff Niner, VA Advocacy Director
  7. Carlos Alfaro, Activities Director
  8. Tom Howe, Membership Director

MORE Staff and Members

  1. Steve DonTigny, Executive Director
  2. Jonah Meyers, Vice-Treasurer
  3. Jonathan Kidwell, Trail Boss

Item #1: Introductions

Current and new Board members introduced themselves, discussed their backgrounds, and talked about their roles vis-à-vis MORE.

Item #2: Trails Discussion

Ernie & Steve DonTigny met w/REI representatives on Friday, January 6th to discuss current and future interactions between MORE and REI. Ernie suggests setting up a meeting of the trails committee to focus on future projects with REI and other large donors. REI’s grant funding to MORE was also discussed. MORE has had some true success and some mixed success in 2016. The problem areas have been: 1) Patapsco signage; 2) Loch Raven approvals; and 3) Fort DuPont. We need to show success and “untie” funds. REI wants regular feedback regarding the projects they fund.

What does the Trails Advocacy Position Entail? (Dave Magill): The trails/advocacy job in a nutshell is: 1) getting approved trail access; 2) raising funds and getting funds for MORE; 3) organizing both build and maintenance activities; and 4) working closely with the liaisons. The Trail Boss is responsible for interacting w/the multiple MORE trail liaisons. Specifically he/she is responsible for: 1) supplying tools to trail liaisons for workdays; 2) organizing and/or scheduling workdays; 3) recruiting and maintaining liaisons for parks; and 4) tracking volunteer hours. Why is tracking hours so important?—our volunteer corps and their hours give MORE a huge advantage and credibility when speaking w/local land managers, policy makers, and donors/funders and is used to support our matching grant process. It’s also important so that we can annually recognize members who volunteer for MORE. MORE recognizes the volunteer “pay rate” as $23/hour; this is substantial “money” when we show we have had over 6000 volunteer hours in a year. The Trail Boss also interfaces w/IMBA on trail issues, trainings, and local land-use issues.

Trail Liaisons and Co-liaisons: Trail liaisons and co-liaisons have responsibility for their park(s): fundraising, interfacing w/the local land manger, organizing rides and trail workdays, and interfacing w/MORE volunteers, staff, and the MORE Board

Trail Workday and Hand-tool budget: 2017 budget for workday costs hand-tools is $8,000. MORE supports limited food provision, typically breakfast, for trail workdays. The Board supports the liaisons and Trail Boss to the best extent possible, but we also encourage liaisons to find local lunch sponsors

Special Purpose Funds: these funds are dedicated and restricted to specific trails, parks, or events. The liaisons and their parks/projects are often self-funded. MORE tries to empower the local liaisons and their teams to be as self-sufficient as possible.

Annual Trail Liaison Meeting (Dave Magill and Jonathan Kidwell): The annual trail liaison meeting in March 2017 will be important for new Board members to attend, especially the MD and VA advocacy directors. This meeting is intended to share lessons learned, discuss current and future projects, and collectively recognize the outstanding work of our liaisons and volunteers.

Monthly Board Meetings: MORE board meetings are organized around an agenda, last two hours, and are held on a monthly basis (the second Monday of the month). The expectation is the MD and VA advocacy directors will provide updates on their activities for board discussion.

What are the critical elements to understand to be successful at the advocacy position?  Do: 1) build community around trails; 2) enable and support trail liaisons in building trials; 3) help recruit volunteers to support trail liaisons; 4) help trail liaisons raise funds to support trails; 5) integrate and celebrate liaison advocacy and trail building successes; and 6) provide training for volunteer trail builders. Don’t: 1) no illegal trail building; 2) no illegal events (races, club parties, etc.); 3) no illegal night riding or illegal riding in general; 4) important to know the rules and regulations for using power tools at each park; and 5) know how to request and purchase tools for trail work from the Board.

Re-routing of existing trails: rule of thumb is if one is re-routing more than 10 yards of trail, then interact w/the local land manager as this becomes a bigger project. Know the difference between big and small projects at the parks. Of course, this depends on the relationship with the land manager and trail liaison.

Brush management: MORE is seeing more and more need for both brush mowers and the use of blade and string trimmers. The purchase of these types of power tools stretches the budget. Liaisons should be interfacing w/the Trail Boss and advocacy directors when a large purchase is under consideration. MORE has two Brush Hogs currently located in storage at Seneca State Park and one CanyCom rock and gravel mover located in a trail liaison’s garage.

Other trail and park clubs and support of multi-use trails: MORE supports the multi-use, natural surface community in the WDC area. We want to partner with all trail users. MORE is having increased success w/the multi-use community b/c we build and maintain trails—MORE is a respected organization in the region b/c we achieve positive, sustainable results for the communities in which we work.  We are primarily a MTN Bike club, but we support all human-powered trail use. The Board supports MORE member involvement in “friends of” groups for specific regional parks and recreation areas, specifically by participating on their boards and interacting w/club members to advance MORE’s goals and objectives.

Community issues (Jonathon Kidwell): How do our newer liaisons and newer parks build rapport and create successful interactions w/the local community? What does it mean to build a community around a park? The Patapsco Park liaison community is an excellent example.

Action Item (Jonathan): MORE has encouraged liaisons to build community, but it hasn’t told them how to do this. Suggest this item be put on the liaison annual meeting/dinner agenda. Each local “social community” builds and maintains trails and organizes the work and community outreach at parks.

Bike Parks/Gravity Trails/Pump Tracks/Expansion of Non-Traditional Trails:

What is MORE’s involvement w/these type of projects? Bike parks are growing in interest and are expanding in the region, however they are very labor and cost intensive. The per/mile cost of supporting a natural mile of trail is considerably less than the per/mile cost of supporting a mile of bike park/pump track trail.

Ernie: These “non-traditional” uses serve as a gateway to future memberships and increased involvement in MORE and its “traditional” projects.

Bull-Run Occoquan Trail (BROT) access was built on the success, popularity, and use of Fountainhead.

Trails and Trail Liaisons Budget : MORE operates on an approved annual budget process. Each Board member has a specific budget and can approve his/her own projects. The Trail Boss has the largest budget (~$8K). A trails committee was formed to focus on priorities and for the disbursement of trail-specific, restricted funds. The Most Accountable Person (MAP) and the trail liaison collaborate to approve expenditures. MORE board members serve as Most Accountable Persons (MAP)s to provide accountability for project funds.

  1. General Trail Fund—a special purpose fund, but not dedicated to a specific park or project.
  2. Recreational Trails Program (RTP) Grants—essentially, grant monies coming from gas tax revenue for use by individual states. MORE succeeded in getting two $30K grants in MD in 2016. Advocacy Directors work w/ liaisons to develop ideas and proposals for grants that are then prioritized. In VA, the minimum RTP grant is $100K (MORE would match 20% of the VA RTP grant). Those RTP requests are for single projects; we can’t package multiple parks in VA for a bigger RTP grant. We also can’t propose that the funding be applied in phases—the RTP grants fund specific projects over specific timelines (usually no more than three years). RTP grant monies can’t fund trail design, marketing, or fundraising—the funds must focus on actual trail building. In MD, the general limit for grants is below $40Kand 10% of the MD RTP grant can go to design, permitting and other costs (new trail development).

Item #3: 2017 Events of Note (Rob Lowe)

  1. Winter Membership Meeting (Party), February 4th, Silver Spring, MD, 6-9PM.
  2. Annual Trail Liaison Meeting, March 2107 (specific date/time/location TBD) Montgomery County (MoCo), MD
  3. Summer Festival, June 10th, MoCo (Seneca Creek State Park)
  4. 25th Gala: Location TBD. Tentative Date is 29 July, 2017
  5. Patapsco Trail Fest September 15-17, MD
  6. MORE Fall Camping Trip: September 22-24, 2107, West Virginia.
  7. MoCo Epic: 7-8 October, 2017. MoCo, MD.
  8. Thinking of reinventing the NoVa Epic – dependent on volunteers

Item #4: 2106 vs. 2107 Financials (Aaron Richter)

2016 was a good year regarding donations and memberships.

During the last six weeks of 2016, MORE received approximately $10K in general fundraising. How often does MORE want to push for donations from members? Semi-annually? Focus on a spring donation and on end-of-the-year calls for financial support. Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) donations: None in 2017 b/c MORE did not submit its 2017 application in time. MORE will be back in the CFC Catalogue of Giving 2018.

 

MORE-IMBA Financial Relationship: IMBA cost-sharing and funding of MORE staff. The Chapter Charter Agreement notes three main items between MORE and IMBA: 1) having an executive-director; 2) getting under the IMBA liability insurance umbrellas; 3) and increasing MORE’s size as a result of its association w/IMBA. We need to grow our membership and we need to grow our grants and funding. We are event driven and that’s when most members renew memberships and when we onboard new members. We need to advertise auto-renewal memberships. Membership revenue is currently split 60/40 between IMBA and MORE respectively. IMBA is considering changing the revenue split based on chapter input and will make a decision early part of 2018.

2017 Budget: The 2017 MORE operating budget was approved in early January 2107.

The average outlay of budgetary expenses per member is $100. Memberships are $35/year. MORE needs to communicate this important fact to current and potential members. Members need to know MORE spends more per member than members pay in dues. Discussion ensued about using membership revenue to fund social activities and raise donations to build trails with matching funds and volunteer work or materials.

Greg D: How do we want to handle recognizing in-kind donations, and do we want to do this in our communications with potential donors and sponsors? A: We could do this, but it may add to our accounting burden and it may not be fully accurate as in-kind donations value is based on what the particular donor has determined.   Ernie: We are asking for donations and should accommodate in-kind donations and asks as long as they are reasonable.

Donors and Sponsorships (Steve DonTigny & Jonah): A MORE committee has been established consisting of: Steve DonTigny, Jonah Meyers, Dave Farraro, Ryan Delany, and Ernie Rodriguez. The committee is looking for one additional member. We are looking to establish a database w/current donors. Focusing on specific sectors such as the Healthcare Industry (doctors, specialists, etc.), real-estate agents, builders, lenders, non-profits, foundations, charitable trusts, non-government grants, companies in the mid-Atlantic area, and outdoor apparel industries and manufacturers. Tom Niner: What about corporate political action committees and matching dollars to employees? Steve: this is the kind of information we need to communicate to members—that they can join their organization’s Employee Political Action Committee (EPAC) and donate to MORE this way. The MORE Donors Committee wants to work w/an apparel organization for the 25th anniversary jersey, on socks, and other items.

Potential Fundraising Events Include: 25th Anniversary Gala (July), Happy Hours, Tap Take-Overs, Board members leading rides on weekends for current and potential donors, Women’s Rides & Events, sMORE’s rides. Need to focus on these underrepresented groups, i.e. women in MORE.

Sponsoring workdays at parks: DC Brau may be willing to sponsor a workday at Fort Dupont Park. Greg D. is following up.

MD RTP Grants Working Capital (Dave): We need to look at increasing the working capital fund (aka backstopping funds) to support MD RTP Grants. We have $100k in grants available for Patuxent and another $60K elsewhere and will need to spend funds up front and be reimbursed by MD State Highway Administration after work is completed. This will be an ongoing challenge for MORE.

Restricted Funds Review (Dave): Reviewed ongoing projects in MD and VA. Board passed a motion to close the Trail Tread and Black Hill funds as they are completed. Liaisons will continue to have access to additional tools as needed.

Item #5: Improving and/or updating the MORE website

Greg has lead for this. Work w/Martin Fernandez and then through Jason Ashmore to consider alternatives. Martin and Jason built the MORE website, Jason is the system administrator and Martin is the content manager. Can we host it somewhere less expensive? Can we edit what is on the website? Editing the website CONTENT is the key goal now. We have 10-15 people with admin rights and each person has their own vision on how/why/when the MORE website should be updated. Jason is excellent at controlling website cost and will continue serve as system administrator. Martin will work to help train administrative users to add content to our site.

Action: Rob, Tom, and Carlos, et. al will work together to review the website and provide suggestions for improvements to Greg D. who will present the suggestions, options, and proposed priorities for improving the MORE website during a future Board meeting.

Item #6: Update on IMBA and collaboration(s) with other trail user groups (Ernie)

Major changes in and to IMBA are immanent in 2017. IMBA runs the essential “back office” operations for MORE. The IMBA associate regional directors not directly funded by a local IMBA chapter were let go. Let’s consider increasing our collaboration with other trail user groups in the local community—we can do this w/out cost to the organization by literally showing up to common events and by supporting common projects.

Ride event coordinator: Brad Hawk—Brad is responsible for regional ride leaders, getting rides on the calendar, Patapsco After Dark, tracking rides lead/swept, etc.

Item #7: February Winter Member Meeting (Party) – All

Ernie: Russ Adams has the lead and will be distributing the agenda and plan for the February member meeting to the Board.

Family Rides, sMOREs: Some of the sMORE’s groups are on winter hiatus. A few groups are active like Todd B. who is now leading sMORE’s in MoCo year round.

Women’s Program: We have great women leaders growing or ride offerings, skills, events and members.

Action Item: We need to make sure we advertise the Winter Meeting Pot Luck in all of our social media!

Gears and Beers: It’s a FB group, not “Meet-Up” group. A community w/in a community, mainly supporting Lake Fairfax Park.

Mountain Bike Meetup – MORE’s Meet-Up group can be found under “Mountain Bike Meet-Up” on the Meet-Up website.

MVD Meetup – has been great at advertising rides, workdays and supporting MORE.

Prospect of Montgomery County, MD becoming an IMBA Ride Center: Could the DC area become an IMBA Ride center? Certainly worth considering.

Action Item: Ernie will work with Dave and Casey Anderson (MoCo Park and Planning) to begin the studying the process for MoCo to be designated as an IMBA Ride Center.

Item #8: Influence among other organizations and Strategic Direction (Ernie) What and how much influence does MORE have in its collaborators network: hikers, road bikers, kayakers, horse community, other trail users? Where do we see the organization five years from now? Ernie’s vision: 5K members, serving as a model organization for other regional and national mountain biking groups to copy, to become self-sufficient in funding and staffing, keeping MORE primarily a volunteer organization with a minimal paid staff, becoming the enabler of multi-use trails in the region, producing regional events and celebrations, and being part of a strong IMBA.

Item #9: Volunteers (Ernie)

Marketing: Jason Miller did an outstanding job on developing the “Who is MORE?” campaign. Trailhead News was successful in 2016 and we should continue distributing Trailhead News in 2017. The dedication of Dave Farraro and Jason Miller in editing the communications was outstanding and that made it successful.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1,500 Members

MORE celebrates becoming 1,500 members strong.

As we grow as a community of mountain biking enthusiasts we build a brand, voice, and attract others to have fun in the dirt.

MORE is an inclusive community of people who enjoy the outdoors, riding bikes, building trails and sharing the social experience.  Our members demonstrate passion and volunteer spirit by leading rides, hosting events, and building and maintaining 600 miles of trails in over 50 DC, MD and VA parks.

Our numbers help us be heard, enabling advocacy for trails for all users, including hikers, equestrians, runners, dog walkers and mountain bikers.  Together we build communities around trails and establishing opportunities to give back financially or in building and maintaining trails.

MORE invites you to come out and ride your bike in a park near you or share the experience with a friend.

“Riding Bikes and Building Trails since 1992”

Join or renew your membership today to make sure we continue to have a strong advocacy voice.

October 2016 Board Meeting Minutes + Activity Reports

MORE Board Meeting

10 October 2016

Location:  7979 Old Georgetown Rd, Suite 1100

Bethesda, MD  20814

7PM-9:00PM

 

Board Members Present

  1. Ernie Rodriguez
  2. Aaron Richter
  3. Dave Magill
  4. Jason Miller
  5. Rob Lowe (Phone)

 

More STAFF and Members

  1. Steve Don-Tigney
  2. Jonah Meyers
  3. Johnathan Kidwell (Phone)

 

 

Item 1:  Financials

  • Need to reconcile spreadsheet regarding new members and renewals from MOCO Epic and Patapsco Trailfest.
    • ACTION -Steve D to reconcile spreadsheets – Complete, 108 MoCo, 143 PTF, 16 Fall Camping Trip
  • Trek Stache Raffle brought in $2,030 for South Germantown and Rockburn Bike Parks
  • Need to balance accounts for Patapsco
  • Paypal is difficult for Treasurer and staff to reconcile.
    • Paypal is easy for users to use.
    • ACTION -Jonah and Aaron will research different options (including our existing square account)
  • MORE is not included in CFC for calendar year 2017 donations
    • MORE needs to work on Holiday giving / donation campaign in lieu of CFC for 2017
    • Ernie R to reapply in December for calendar year 2018

 

Item 2:  Monthly membership update (Ernie):

  • MORE is currently around 1100 members (1300 if you count sponsorships / partnerships).
    • Does not include Fall Camping Trip / Patapsco / MOCO renewals. Estimated to be 267 memberships
  • We had a good campaign with IMBA for renewals / lapsed memberships

 

Item 3:  Approval of Restricted Fund (Grant Working Capital Fund)

  • Trails Conservancy $40,000 loan proceeds will be placed in this fund based upon agreement with Single Track Futures Foundation 2015
  • Expected total of $160,000 in Maryland RTP grants in the pipeline
  • MORE needs to put money up front for these grants projects and get reimbursed later.
  • ***VOTE*** Create Grants Working Capital Restricted Fund with an initial balance of $40,000. Motion Passed – All in Favor

 

Item 4:  REI OptOutside:

  • MORE will participate in REI’s OptOutside campaign for 2016 (Black Friday)
  • ACTION – Ernie and Brad will organize rides to share with REI

 

Item 5:  Board Reorganization: 

  • Discussion: The responsibilities for MD and VA advocacy is too much for one person
  • ***VOTE*** Create VA Advocacy Director –  Scope includes all advocacy trail matters to include advocacy, construction, maintenance, and grants.
    • Motion Passed – All in Favor
  • ***VOTE*** Eliminate Trails Director position and create MD Advocacy Director – Effective Board Transition Meeting (January 2017)
    • Motion Passed All in Favor

 

Item 6:  Board of Director 2016 Elections:

  • Nomination Period runs November 1-25
  • Election Period is November 28 – December 5
  • Positions up for Election are:
    • Member Representative
    • Activities Director
    • Virginia Advocacy Director
    • Maryland Advocacy Director
  • ACTION – Steve DonTigney to identify volunteer to run elections
    • Brad Hawk will run elections

 

 

Item 7:  Winter Party / Annual Membership Meeting

  • Russ is heading up planning for Winter Party.
  • Russ will lead a call with board before the next meeting to discuss plans for party
  • Winter Party is February 4, 2017 at the Gwendolyn Coffield Community Center

 

Item 8:  MORE 25th Anniversary:

  • 2017 is the 25th Anniversary of MORE.
  • Jason is working on 25th Anniversary logo. Will be reaching out to membership for help in designing it.
  • BOD will be developing numerous events throughout 2017 celebrating 25 years

 

Item 9:  Trail Updates:

  • Lake Fairfax Bike Park –Grand Opening held on October 8, 2017. Good attendance and covered by local media.
  • Bacon Ridge – Received conditional approval from Scenic Rivers Land Trust for Phase 2 (Four additional miles)
  • Loch Raven – Informational meeting held on October 12. Currently still have access issues with private landowners.  MORE and the City of Baltimore are still acting under the previous agreement and are anticipating renewing it.
  • Frederick Watershed – Continuing to work with Frederick DPW on proposed Trail Map and Work Plan.
  • MOCO – Planning Board approved an updated Trails Master Plan. Officially designates an additional 50 miles to be built out over the next 2-3 years, including 2 loops in Eastern Montgomery County.
  • Monacacy Natural Resources Area (near Sugarloaf Mtn) – Kathleen Mihm (New MORE Trail Liaison) toured the park with DNR management and are developing a plan to open existing trails and create new trails (Total 10 miles)
  • Little Bennett – Parks department added another mile (built by the county) to the Tobacco Farm Trail
  • Cabin John Park – A mile of new trail has been built and opened north of Tuckerman

 

 

Item 10:  MOCO Epic Recap:

  • Great Day/ Full recap will be in trailhead news.  Casey Andersen, Chair of the Montgomery County Planning Board, stated that he wants to make Montgomery County the best place on the East Coast for Mountain Biking.

 

 

Board Member Activity Reports:

 

 

Ernie:

  • Membership
    • Messages to lapsed memberships – August and September
    • Messages to expiring members – October
    • Thank you for joining/renewing members
    • Research membership status (discounts) for Patapsco and MoCo events
  • Attendance
    • Patapsco Trails Festival
    • Fall Camping Trip
  • Advocacy
    • Prince William County trails planning and volunteer recruitment meeting
    • Arlington County parkland user meeting
    • Grant application for Mount Vernon – 495 Express Lanes
    • Lake Fairfax Pump Track – completion and ribbon cutting
  • Other
    • Order MORE socks with Jason Stoner
    • Work with Aaron, Kevin Adams and Bob Compton on financials

Jason M.:

  • Prepared September Trailhead News

 

Jonah M.:

  • Attended MORE Fall Camping trip
  • Attended Patapsco Trail Fest
  • Volunteered at MoCo Epic
  • Solicited maps, photos and text for website from MORE liaisons

 

Dave M.:

  • Mostly MOCO Epic Related –
  • Organized trail survey and final repairs on trails
  • Attended final workday on Cool Spring Run trail
  • Organized course markers along with Tom Newton
  • Marked 7 miles of trail
  • Command Center phone on Ride Day – fixed bad marking, shuttled food to aid stations running out, organized pick ups for riders who could not finish, etc
  • Demarking and helping to take down the Mothership
  • Huge team effort expertly run by Todd Bauer, Bob Caverly and James Corbett with about 75 volunteers in all; thanks to all who helped out and thanks to all who signed up and came out for a great day!

 

Aaron R.

  • Attended RVA Fall Line Trailfest
  • Meet with Bob Compton, Kevin Adams, and Ernie Rodriguez regardning Tax return questions
  • Completed balance sheet for CPA and taxes
  • Prepared books and mailed checks

Jonathan K.:

  • Updated website with upcoming work days
  • Helped onboard new trail liaisons
  • Distributed surplus hoes to trail liaisons
  • Volunteered for MOCO Epic

 

Steve D-T.:

  • Lake Fairfax Pump Track Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
  • PHTA Board Meeting
    • trail connections, Ft. Belvoir access, Leesburg Rt. 15 road project/Trail proposal
    • PHTA Trail new trail evaluation
    • CCT trail Laurel Crest Trail extension
  • 4 Mile Run Park Planning Meeting
    • Pump Track proposal presentation
  • Capital Trails Coalition- Sept. Meeting
    • Press event, ART opening, capital funding
  • Little River Turnpike Bicycle Study Meeting
    • County planning for routes through Annandale East/West corridor
  • Prince William County MTBer Happy Hour
    • user group Meet and Greet

 

MORE Board of Directors Elections are Coming

The MORE Board of Directors Annual Elections are coming soon.  The positions up for elections are:

  • Member Representativeunknown
  • Activities Director
  • Virginia Advocacy Director
  • Maryland Advocacy Director

The nomination Period is November 1-25

Voting will take place November 28-December 5

If you would like more information about the positions reach out to any of the existing board members or elections@more-mtb.org

If you are interested in nominating yourself for a position, please email elections@more-mtb.org.

Position Descriptions:

Member Representative – Represents all members from the Commonwealth of Virginia, the State of Maryland, and the District of Columbia. The Members Representative is responsible for building and leading a team of regionally selected membership representatives with the purpose of providing feedback to the BOD. The Members Representative chairs standing members committee. The Members Representative shall have all of the responsibilities and powers of other members of the Board.

Activities Director – Oversees critical volunteer, youth, ride, and event activities of MORE. Manages MORE’s social and youth program activities and the MORE-organized rides program, which is to address the needs of all ages and ability types. Coordinates and publishes the youth programs, event, and ride schedules. The Activities Director chairs the standing activities committee and shall have all of the responsibilities and powers of other members of the Board.

Virginia Advocacy Director – Oversees advocacy, trail building and maintenance efforts in Northern Virginia in support of the MORE vision and mission statements, including the complete life cycle of all trail projects from funding through maintenance via formalized processes as directed by the BOD. Serves as the primary contact for negotiations with land management agencies. The Advocacy Director is responsible for MORE’s advocacy, trail building and maintenance efforts including, but not limited to, the coordination and execution of official trail access initiatives; trail projects; and the trail liaison program, to include maintaining the work day calendar and coordinating the trail maintenance activities of MORE. The Advocacy Director is also responsible for trail planning activities, grant application and/or grant administration functions, and contracting with and scheduling vendors to perform trail construction when applicable.

Maryland Advocacy Director – Oversees advocacy, trail building and maintenance efforts in Maryland in support of the MORE vision and mission statements, including the complete life cycle of all trail projects from funding through maintenance via formalized processes as directed by the BOD. Serves as the primary contact for negotiations with land management agencies. The Advocacy Director is responsible for MORE’s advocacy, trail building and maintenance efforts including, but not limited to, the coordination and execution of official trail access initiatives; trail projects; and the trail liaison program, to include maintaining the work day calendar and coordinating the trail maintenance activities of MORE. The Advocacy Director is also responsible for trail planning activities, grant application and/or grant administration functions, and contracting with and scheduling vendors to perform trail construction when applicable.