Chapters and members came together in Montpelier on Nov. 30th for an amazing night of discussion highlighted by the organization’s advocacy victories and of course, this year’s trail grant awards. Huge thanks to Cabot Cheese, Bluestone Pizza, SAP soda and Long Trail Brewery for ensuring everyone had the fuel to stay engaged!
Major Take-a-ways from the meeting:
- Membership is over 4400 this year and add-ons jumped from 278 last year to over 950!
- The trail grant increased by 35% from last year – $50,000 distributed among 14 chapters
- Act 250 will be seeing some real progress this next legislative session
- The Association will be producing a professionally formatted landowner relations packet for chapters next spring that outlines: The Landowner Liability Act, VMBA’s 10-year Access Agreement, Act 250 and VMBA/chapter info
- VMBA has innovated the VT Mountain Bike retailer Alliance. Starting on January 1st twenty-one shops will be supporting memberships for the first 25 people that purchase mountain bikes each spring
- VMBA has launched new partnership with Cabot Creamery that will result in 10 new trailhead kiosks, new web site, awesome bike raffle opportunities, a volunteer rewards program. Cabot stepped up as the the title sponsor of the new Velomont Trail – a singletrack route linking Killington to Stowe! Stay tuned for more info on this project
- Overall, VMBA’s finances will support operations through the winter, which is a critical time for administrative changes and program development. It is always the priority to ensure that riders’ membership dollars go back to chapters through services and grants. This year we hit the 90% mark on that goal for the first time
Congratulations to Adam St. Germian, Judy Boyd, Brad DeBoer and Jeff Dickson for being elected as VMBA’s newest Board of Directors.
The event was well attended – over 80 people were able to make the session. For those that couldn’t make it, you can see the power point presentation (Annual Meeting_17.pdf) and check out the member survey from this year (Survey data_17.pdf ). Over 1000 members took the time to share their perspectives – HUGE THANKS to everyone! The document shares a lot of insight to the membership. Here’s a quick example:
It’s clear that members’ riding skills are quickly developing. This process has been facilitated through chapters being thoughtful about incorporating access appealing to beginners. Responses to this survey may encourage chapters to discuss the percentage trails that appeal to beginners in relation to the rate at which their skills develop to ensure that there is always a progression to pursue.
There’s more in the link – enjoy and thanks again to the sponsors and to everyone that could make it.