In 2019, we set out to strengthen the connection between our mountain bike community and Vermont’s outdoor-minded businesses through the Naming Grants program. This year, 8 companies with a passion for the outdoors are collectively providing over $33,000 for projects across 6 Chapters, to be implemented next building season. We are incredibly grateful for companies like these that see the role of mountain biking in a healthy, thriving Vermont.
Naming Grants provide an opportunity for outdoor-minded businesses to directly influence Vermont’s outdoor recreation infrastructure in a way that reflects the passions of their employees. We work closely with each company to shape their Grant, from goals to scope to geography. Together, we not only enhance our trail systems, but the satisfaction, loyalty, and connection to place of their employees and customers. If your company might be interested, or simply to learn more, please visit our Naming Grants page.
This past weekend, we announced the 2022 Naming Grants at our Member Appreciation Party. Below is a brief summary of each Chapter recipient and the respective trail project they will be using the support to make happen next year.
2022 VMBA Naming Grants:
Each of these companies was excited to partner with a local VMBA Chapter, supporting efforts including trail maintenance & reroutes, new or upgraded features, adaptive enhancements to existing trails, and new trail builds. The common goal of these partnerships is to empower Chapters’ community-driven stewardship while making Vermont an even better place to ride.
Cabot Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Addison County Bike Club (ACBC)
ACBC will be leveraging $5,000 in support from longtime Naming Grant partner Cabot towards the design and construction of a brand-new pump track adjacent to the Mary Hogan Elementary School in Middlebury. This facility will allow kids and adults alike to develop their cornering, jumping, and positioning skills, and the location will facilitate easy access for school and afterschool programs while helping ACBC achieve its goal of getting more local kids on bikes. The project has the enthusiastic support of the school district and preliminary professional design has already been completed. Construction is slated to take place in spring or summer of 2023.
Outdoor Gear Exchange Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Franklin County Mountain Bike Club (FCMBC)
FCMBC will be applying $5,000 in support from Outdoor Gear Exchange to construct a new 1.5-mile singletrack trail in the St. Albans Town Forest, a 30% expansion of the current trail system there. This new trail represents Phase 1 of a three phase, multi-year plan that includes a future 4+ mile ridgeline trail descending to the Missisquoi Valley Rail Trail, ultimately connecting the Town Forest to the Hard’ack Recreation Area. All trails will be built by a professional trail builder, in coordination with volunteers from FCMBTC and the community.
Press Forward Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Stowe Trails Partnership (STP)
STP will be deploying $5,000 in funding from Press Forward PR to execute a host of crucial maintenance projects in Cady Hill Forest,
specifically focused on the ever-popular trails Florence, Snake, and Cady Hill Connector. While these machine-built trails have held up admirably under the +30% increase in traffic since 2020, they are due for selective repairs. A professional trail builder working with a mini excavator will conduct the majority of these projects, with the STP Trail Crew and volunteer support engaged as appropriate
Velocio Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Richmond Mountain Trails (RMT)
RMT will use Velocio Apparel’s $5,000 Naming Grant to continue trail development at the new Driving Range network, Vermont’s first purpose-built adaptive-ready mountain bike system. Velocio Naming Grant funds will help complete the Upper Climb to the height of the property, after which construction of a hand-built ridgeline Downhill will kick off. Once these projects are complete, expected in early 2023, the Driving Range will have two fully rideable loops, building momentum and keeping members and volunteers excited and engaged as RMT works towards seven miles of adaptive-friendly, intermediate and advanced trails.
Turtle Fur Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Brewster River Mountain Bike Club (BRMBC)
BRMBC will be utilizing $2,500 in support from Turtle Fur to make adaptive enhancements to Meagan’s Trail at Cricket Hill in Hyde Park. The proposed upgrades will relocate the existing trail tread to adjacent areas of wooded terrain to create adaptive-friendly single-track, eliminate some confusion as to where the trail goes, and to potentially eliminate conflict between riders and other trail users. These targeted efforts will be the start of a larger, longer-term plan to bring all of Meagan’s Trail up to adaptive standards, following guidelines published by the Kootenay Adaptive Sports Association (KASA).
Green Mountain Solar Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Fellowship of the Wheel (FOTW)
FOTW will apply $2,500 in Naming Grant support from Green Mountain Solar for adaptive improvements in Mud Pond Country Park. Mud Pond features a wide trail tread and moderate grade making it an excellent candidate for aMTB enhancements. GMS Naming Grant funds will be used to address a few specific areas of the trail with pinch points, narrow bridges, and cambers that could present tipping hazards to aMTBs. Widening bridges and resolving such issues along this loop will better align it with the beginner and intermediate design of the rest of the trail, improving the experience for those who the trail was originally designed for.
VBT Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Fellowship of the Wheel (FOTW)
FOTW will be using $2,500 in Naming Grant support from VBT Bicycling Vacations to assist with covering the costs of restoring and improving Front Door, Henry’s Highlands, and Preacher trails in the Carse Hills network. These trails were installed over 15 years ago, and while reasonably durable, time and use have left them in need of tread improvement and rerouting from the original design to accommodate long term sustainability and increased user volumes. The Carse Hills network is now indefinitely conserved, and FOTW is aiming to overhaul these trails in a way that maintains their classic New England character while also making them last for the next 15 years and beyond.
Ranch Camp Naming Grant
Chapter Recipient: Addison County Bicycle Club (ACBC)
ACBC will be putting $3,500 from Ranch Camp towards the purchase of a new Snowdog to establish winter grooming operations across several of their networks. Thanks to these funds, winter fat bike riding at the New Leaf trails in Bristol and the Middlebury trails at Chipman Hill and Battell Woods will be made possible. While members of the ACBC club currently help groom at Rikert Outdoor Center, no such equipment has previously been available for the trails in Bristol and Middlebury. With volunteers already lined up to take on grooming duties, this Naming Grant will greatly expand the available winter riding in the area.
Thank you to the incredible support from these outdoor-minded businesses and to the hard work of our Chapters and volunteers that make Vermont’s trails among the best in the country!