Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Chapter Meeting Minutes - December 7, 2009

Western Michigan Mountain Biking Association
Meeting Minutes
December 7, 2009

Location: Mangiamo’s Restaurant – Grand Rapids, Mi

Board Members Present: Rick Plite, Dave Staublin, Jason Schwab

Members Present: Chris Curtis, Scott Thenikl, Jenn Bechtel, Jason Bechtel, Sean Evans, Chris Johnson, Silteldon Lambert, Karl Siebert, Doug Klynstra, Joshua Duggan, Dennis Murphy, Steve Kunnath, Sue Kunnath, Heather Kubiak, Carol Griffin, Ron Johnston, Brendon Bayley

Start Time: 6:45pm

0.0 Meeting Called to Order
1.0 Previous meeting review with Updates
1.1 Film Festival – Feb 13th
1.2 State Games – June 25th – 27th
1.3 Dennis Murphy is now CPS Coordinator
1.4 Motion to approve the minutes by Rick Plite, seconded by Dave Staublin
2.0 Announce new board members
2.1 Vice President – Martin Hall
2.2 Treasurer – Dave Staublin
2.3 Secretary – Jason Schwab
3.0 Turkey Burner @ Yankee Springs
3.1 Becoming an annual event & good turnout
4.0 Holiday Ride
4.1 December 13th, 2009, 1pm @ Founders. Ride will go to many downtown bars and end at Founders @3pm
5.0 Priority Health Underwear Party
5.1 December 16th, 2009, 7pm @ McFaddens. Bring a pack of men’s underwear to donate to those less fortunate
6.0 Trail Coordinator Updates
6.1 Luton
6.1.1 In October the log pile on the Black Loop was Finished
6.1.2 Reroute on the blue loop because of mud / water issues
6.1.3 DO NOT Park at the barn. Please park @ D&W.
7.0 State Games
7.1 June 26th @ Cannonsburg
7.2 Mountain Biking will consist of probably Cross Country and Downhill events.
7.3 Contact Dave Staublin for more details

8.0 Grand Rapids Biking Coalition
8.1 Grand Rapids was awarded a bronze level status for bicycle friendly community.
9.0 State MMBA News
9.1 Insurance Policy Almost Complete
9.1.1 New insurance will cover design, construction, and maintenance.
9.1.2 No teeter-totters under new insurance
9.1.3 Teeter-totters were removed from Cannonsburg
9.1.4 New insurance now covers alcohol at events.
9.1.5 Cross Country races now covered
9.1.6 New carrier will be RJF insurance, which is the same insurance company Trek uses.
9.2 MMBA is looking to hire a lobbiest
9.3 Call for Reginal Trail Coordinators
9.3.1 Contact Nate Phelps for more information
9.4 Horse Bill
9.4.1 This bill would allow horse use on almost all Mountain Biking Trails
9.4.2 Contact Rick Plite or Nate Phelps for a letter to send in opposing this bill.
9.4.3 This is one of the main reasons that the State MMBA has decided to hire a lobbyist
9.5 State Annual Meeting
9.5.1 January 31st, 2009 @ MSU Pavilion in Lansing, MI
9.5.2 Starts at 10am
9.5.3 Silent Auction, indoor riding
9.5.4 Open to the general Public (free event)
10.0 Closing
10.1 Reinstate mass email reminders for events
10.2 Overview of volunteer hours to date
10.3 Bike Stock 2010 will be sometime in July 2010

Meeting ended: 8:00 p.m.

These minutes to be posted at: Western Mmba on Facebook and western@mmba.org (blogger.com).

Previous months' minutes can be requested from: jason@jasonschwab.com

Holiday Ride, December 13th, 1:00 P.M.

Ho! Ho! Ho! Time for the Western Chapter Michigan Mountain Bike Association's "Holiday Ride". Set your sled (Bike) to be at Founders Brewing Parking lot this Sunday December 13th, 1:00 pm. We'll ride around greater downtown Grand Rapids and visit various public houses of Joy and "Spirits" until around 3:00 pm or whenever we find our way back to Founders. All bikes and rider skills are welcome as we share the sprit of the season. See you Sunday! Martin

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Chapter Meeting

Western MMBA Chapter Meeting this Monday December 7th, 2009. Meet at Mangiamo's 6:30 P.M. All are welcome to attend and find out what the westernMMBA is up to these days!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Underwear Party

‘Tis the Time of Year to join the Priority Health Cycling Teams at McFaddens at 58 Ionia Ave SW in downtown Grand Rapids to collect some needy items and cash (always needed) for our less fortunate brothers of this community. This annual gathering of the local cycling clan ( including roadies, Mountain bikers and cross racers) allows us all to be thankful for what we have and what we can give to others.
This wonderful gathering started several years ago as a small group of cyclists from a local church and has grown to include the greater community. The Mel Trotter Mission, when asked what they could use for these men responded quickly “ we always need underwear and socks 24/7 all year round”. Thus, the underwear and sock theme. When deciding how much to spend or bring remember how much we all spend on cycling stuff year round. These guys need our help and together we can do a great thing while enjoying each others company with a beer or sandwich or both in hand. Bring your family, friends, teammates, favorite mechanic, personal trainer, etc. the more the merrier!
Join us at McFaddens on Ionia Ave SW on Wednesday December 16th at 7 pm till ???? We will have the upper room completely to ourselves complete with bar, pool tables, big screen TV and loungers. Last year was the best year ever as we raised a few thousand dollars and enough underwear and socks to fill 2 minivans!!!

Spread the word.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Turkey Burner Ride=First Snow Ride

Over 40 riders took part in the annual Turkey Burner ride at Yankee Springs/Deep Lake mountain bike trail 11-27-09. As a special treat, group ride leader Martin Hall ordered up a fresh dusting of the white stuff. More photos can be found on the Flickr link, Group Rides. Thanks to all that participated!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Luton Park

Mountain bike riding at Luton Park is a pilot program for the wMMBA and Kent County Parks Department. After many years of submitting plans and ideas to Kent Co, the wMMBA was finally given permission to develop trails on the undeveloped land known as Luton Park.

Luton Park had a two-track trail approximately 1.5 miles long (the Blue Loop) and a small parking area near a barn on Kies Ave that was used by local friends, family and neighbors for many years prior to our arrival. One of the stipulations with the Parks Department was that the wMMBA would encourage and recommend to the riders that use the park that they not park at the barn on Kies Ave due to the fact it is too small for the amount of traffic impact we would place there. It would remain a “foot traffic only” parking area. This would also keep peace somewhat with the neighbors that are not pleased with the new activity at Luton Park.

Future plans do call for a parking lot to be built off Ten Mile Road. The current economic situation and major budget cuts have had a serious impact on the county and a parking lot could be years away.

Mountain bikers and cyclist in general have a poor reputation among many people. As with any pilot program, the actions of a few bad seeds can ruin it for all of us. The wMMBA has assured the county that we are a responsible user group and should be given a fair shot.

In the first season and a half of mountain biking at Luton Park it has been observed that many riders have disappointed the wMMBA, the County and the Luton neighbors. Many complaints have been made to the county via telephone, letter, or email including:

· Ignoring posted “No Parking Signs” on 10 Mile Road
· Ignoring requests to not park at the barn
· Ignoring posted “No Night Riding” signs
· Urinating in public
· Drinking alcohol on park property
· Littering energy wrappers and bike water bottles
· Fast riders being rude to hikers or slower bike riders
· Trespassing on park property before dawn or after dusk
· Illegally parking on a county roadway shoulder

Our actions at Luton Park will have a direct affect on the wMMBA’s progress with gaining access to other parkland in West Michigan currently be discussed including the City of Grand Rapids, City of Wyoming, City of Kentwood, Allegan County, Ottawa County and Newaygo County.

The wMMBA and its volunteers have over 1800 hours of labor and thousands of dollars invested in this multi-use trail system. It is currently recommended that riders park at D&W Plaza just 1-mile away and ride the wide road shoulder to and from the trailhead.
I would highly recommend those cyclists and hikers that are pleased that the county has opened this land to us that they write a letter or email thanking them for this great opportunity. Send letters to: Kent County Parks 1700 Butterworth SW Grand Rapids, MI 49534-7065, The Grand Rapids Press, or emails to: Roger Sabine at Roger.Sabine@kentcountymi.gov
Please spread the word and help us clean up our act. The future of mountain biking is in your hands.


Rick Plite
wMMBA President
Luton Park Trail Coordinator

Monday, November 23, 2009

Election Results for 2010 Board Members

Results of Election for 2010 Board Members are:
Vice President: Martin Hall
Treasurer: Dave Staublin
Secretary: Jason Schwab

Congratulations to our new Board Members and thank you to everyone who voted!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Annual Turkey Burner Ride

Once again this ride will be held on the Friday following Thanksgiving (November 27th, 2009) at the Deep Lake trailhead, Yankee Springs Recreation Area. Arrive in time to depart the parking lot at 10:00am+/- plan on riding for a of couple hours, then up to Middleville's "Champs Bar" for a bite to eat and a cold beer. Enjoy the holiday and the last organized WMMBA Ride of 2009. All levels are invited, as we will break into 2 or 3 groups depending on the speed and experience of those in attendance.Please pass this along to your friends and we'll see you for the Turkey Burner. RSVP not required, just show up and feel that turkey burn!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Link to voting site

Voting is now open for the 2010 Board positions of Secretary, Treasurer, and Vice President!

Please go to the voting site on SurveyMonkey.com (Click Here to take survey) before midnight on November 15th to select your new board members. Winners will be announced at the December 7th meeting, which is on the 2nd floor of Mangiamos Restaurant, at 7 p.m.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Looking for Nominees to fill open positions

It is that time of year! We are looking for nominees to fill the positions of Secretary, Treasurer, and Vice President. Please send your nominations to: ricejennbud at yahoo dot see oh emm.
I will need to be able to contact the nominee to let them confirm their interest so please include an email or phone number for them.
Thank You,
Jennifer Bechtel
Secretary, Western MMBA

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Brown Co Trip canceled

The trip for this weekend (10-23, 24, 25) has been canceled. Brown Co is expecting over and inch of rain tonight and another inch tomorrow with additional rain on Saturday. Highs in the forties.
Maybe next year.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Western trip to Brown Co..possibly canceled?

The weather looks wet and cold for the chapter trip to Brown Co Indiana this weekend (Oct 23rd-25th). I will make the call Thursday afternoon and post on this site if it is a go or canceled. :( Brown Co soil has a high clay content and it would not be cool to ride in wet weather.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Race Across the Sky movie night

Join some Western Chapter friends for a one night showing of Race Across the Sky this Thursday at Rivertown Crossing. This is a full feature film about the Leadville 100 mile mountain biking race held this past summer where Lance Armstrong upset previous champion Dave Wiens. Buy tickets in advance or at the door.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Approval! Stanaback Park-Kentwood

Kentwood ready to create its first mountain bike trail, in Stanaback Park
By Julie Makarewicz | The Grand Rapids Press...
October 15, 2009, 7:32AM

KENTWOOD — Stanaback Park’s deep ravines, rough terrain and wooded areas could become home to the city’s first mountain bike trails.

Members of the Michigan Mountain Bike Association recently toured the park, north of 44th Street SE and east of Breton Avenue, and met with parks and recreation officials to discuss trail plans.

Director Charlie Ziesemer said the Parks and Recreation Commission gave its early blessing to the proposal, dependent on final contract agreements and liabilities. Harriet Stanaback, who donated the original 33 acres for the park, also agreed to a first phase of the project.

When Stanaback donated the land in 1998, she stipulated it be kept mostly in its natural state and used for passive recreation.

“I think it’s going to be a very good use for the property,” Ziesemer said of the trails. “They’re (MMBA volunteers) going to come in and do all the work and maintain the trail. It’s really a win-win for the city.”

Details still need to be settled, but MMBA volunteers seem eager to get started yet this year, if possible, Ziesemer said.

The park — the 33 acres donated by Stanaback plus 17 adjacent acres bought by the city this fall with state grants — includes some paved walking trails, a basketball court, restrooms, a picnic shelter and playground.

“It’s a beautiful park, and there are some very interesting natural features there,” said Martin Hall, a member of the Western Chapter of the association. “The ravines are tremendous, and it’s just a beautiful property where people can get close to nature.”

Hall said the park got high ratings from the MMBA because of its natural features, its proximity to other bike trails, and the large number of volunteers in the area to help with construction and maintenance.

If approved by the city, the trails will be built in phases. The first phase could have about four miles of mountain biking trails north of the paved trail, Hall said. If that goes well, a second phase might add another mile or two to the south side.

MMBA is a nonprofit organization with more than 2,500 members in nine chapters. Volunteers design, develop and maintain trails.

Other mountain bike trails in the area are in the Allegan State Game Area, Cannonsburg State Game Area and Cannonsburg ski area, Edward Creek and Greenville Shearer Road in Greenville, Grand River in Jenison, Luton Park Trail in Rockford, Riley Trails in Holland, Robinette’s in Grand Rapids, and Yankees Springs in Middleville.

Monday, October 12, 2009

NCT Epic pictures are posted!

29 people made the trip down the NCT from Mesick to Freesoil Road(42 miles) or the full on version from Mesick to Baldwin(77 miles). The Pere Marquette Lodge once again served as great hosts for our epic jorney. The weather served up the most diverse conditons only Michigan can produce; from frozen fog to sunny 50's and then some sleet, rain and snow to cap off the ride. The warm lodge, roaring fire, friends, food and Founders beer hit the spot. Check out the trip photos.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Meeting Minutes - October 2009

Western Michigan Mountain Biking Association - Meeting Minutes

Location: Mangiamo Restaurant - 2nd Floor, Lake St. Grand Rapids, MI

Board Members Present: Rick Plite - President, Jason Dew-Vice President, Martin Hall - Treasurer, Jennifer Bechtel-Secretary, Nate Phelps-State Representative, Dennis Murphy-State CPS coordinator.

Members Present: Jason Bechtel

Start Time: 6:30 p.m.
0.0 Meeting called to order at 6:40 p.m. - Rick Plite

1.0 Minutes review w/updates - Rick Plite
1.1. Brown County Indiana camping trip October 23 - 25th.
1.1.1. We have a large Group Camping Spot so anyone who wants to attend can show up and pitch a tent with the group. If you would like to carpool, please contact Rick at: amtnbiker@chartermi.net
1.2. NCT Ride is this coming weekend (October 9th,10th,11th). There are two double-rooms available. Contact Martin Hall at:
1.3. Halloween Party - no party this year
1.4. Meetings - still seeing low attendance. Discussed sending email reminders and reminding Jason S. to update Twitter/Facebook links
1.5. Motion to approve the minutes by Nate Phelps. Motion seconded by Martin Hall. Motion carried.

2.0 Film Festival Update - Nate Phelps
2.1 Planning this for mid-February at Wealthy Theatre.
2.2 Side note: the movie "Race Across the Sky" will play one night only (10/22) at Celebrations theatre in Grandville (Rivertown Crossings)

3.0 State Games Committee Members - Rick Plite
3.1 Scott Chambers, Wade Bagnell, Reid Arnot, Christian Glupker, and Dave Staublin
3.2 State Games scheduled to happen June 25th - 27th, 2010 with an opening ceremony Friday night in downtown Grand Rapids.

4.0 Trail Coordinators/Updates - Rick Plite
4.1 Game Area closed
4.2 Ski area closes November 7th
4.3 Luton Park - it has been noticed cars are parking on Kies street instead of in the parking area and that people are drinking at their cars even though it is posted No Alcohol. We do not know if these are MMBA members, but everyone please remember to keep this trail a safe and family-friendly environment.
4.4 Bass Trailhead - Tom Landry and crew had a trail day this fall and worked on filling low areas.
4.5 Allegan - had a good turnout for the Trail day this past weekend. Still needs some work but thank you to those who helped.
4.6 Ionia - the Trail Coordinator has been sidelined with various events/issues this summer.

5.0 Treasury Report - Martin Hall

6.0 State Rep Update - Nate Phelps
6.1 Pleased to announce that WMMBA member Dennis Murphy is the new CPS Coordinator and Heather Kubiak is also a member of the CPS Committee (also a MMBA board member).
6.2 Annual Meeting
6.2.1 Looking at MSU Pavilian for the last weekend in January
6.2.2 Possible two day event with the first day (30th) being for classes, retailer presentations, trail schools, etc
6.2.3 Separate speaking rooms for presenters
6.3 Insurance review occurring
6.3.1 May cause Trail Day moratorium until insurance is secured. Please check with Nate before scheduling a trail day.
6.4 Strategic Planning Session will be occurring at the State level, led by WMMBA member and board member Martin Hall (note that the WMMBA will resume its Strategic Planning meetings with the winter season).

7.1 We are looking for a Treasurer, Secretary, and Vice President for the 2010 year.
7.2 Nomination period will be October 19th - 26th and voting will be via SurveyMonkey from November 1st to the 15th. Winners will be announced at the December 7th meeting.

8.0 Local Government Updates
8.1 Aaron Smith and Nate Phelps will go to the October 6th City Commission meeting for final approval of the bike park. Looks hopeful. If yes, we can schedule the first two weeks in November for Jason Wells to be building trails.
8.2 The Bike Friendly Community (BFC) results are due soon. The Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition (GGRBC) were hoping for a bronze level for Grand Rapids.
8.3 On a related note to the BFC, Nate Phelps would like Aaron Smith to be the WMMBA Chapter Representative to the GGRBC. Motion made by Martin Hall, Rick Plite seconded. Motion carried.

Meeting ended: 7:45 p.m.

NEXT MEETING IS: DECEMBER 7th at Mangiamos (upstairs) at 6:30 p.m.

These minutes to be posted at: Western Mmba on Facebook and western@mmba.org (blogger.com).

Previous months' minutes can be requested from: ricejennbud@yahoo.com

If you received these minutes via email, it is because you signed in at a previous general or committee meeting and gave us this information. If you wish to be removed from the list, please reply to this email with the message "Remove me from WMMBA Minutes notification."

Side note: Something not mentioned at the meeting but should have been:
The 2010 Yankee Springs Time Trial Committee is forming now! The first meeting is on October 21st at the Uccellos in Caledonia (8526 Broadmoor Ave SE) at 7:00 p.m. If you are interested please notify Dennis Murphy at 616-394-2218 or email him at dennis.murphy@gmail.com.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Grand Rapids Bike Park


This past Tuesday night the city of Grand Rapids Commission unanimously approved our project.
We have a bike park.

A work schedule is being developed as we hope to finish phase 1 in November.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Brown County State Park, Indiana

Join the Western Chapter for a weekend of camping and riding Oct 23rd-25th and see why Brown County is the best place to ride within a 7 hours drive of GR. While this weekend is a chapter event aimed at getting people together for riding and socializing everyone is on their own for meals and transportation. Carpooling is recommended and if you email us we can try to hook folks up. The chapter has reserved Rally Camp #5 and everyone is welcome to camp on this site (50 max). Cost is approximately $10 per person per night. All other camping accomodations are full already! There may be cabins available for rent as well. Bring the family; there are many non-riding options to choose from including hiking, horseback riding, shopping, wine tasting, swimming and more.

With miles and miles of flowing trail, scenic vistas and amazing terrain Brown County has become a world-class mountain biking destination.

In its March 2009 issue Bike magazine named Brown County State Park one of the best 33 trail systems in North America! It was also named runner-up in the "Best Trail Network" category. The editors said "its...singletrack is among the most varied terrain east of the Mississippi. From berms to steep switchbacks to tight trees to rock gardens, these trails have it all.

Bike magazine also said that Brown County has "flowed-out berms, tight switchbacks and hand-built rock features that will leave you thinking you landed in Tsali [North Carolina] or Canaan [West Virginia]. Ride an out-and-back, and you've got 30-plus miles. Switchbacks? Plenty. Steep climbs? Just like the East Coast. Natural beauty? It's at an all-time high in the fall." Dirt Rag magazine wrote, "Hills, rocks, trees, roots. A place that reminds you why wheels turn.

The Brown County mountain bike trail system is located entirely within Brown County State Park






Thursday, September 10, 2009

Last CSGA Ride of the season party!

Monday, Sept. 14th is the last day to ride at Cannonsburg State Game Area for the year. Come on out and do a lap or several. This "group ride" will have no structure, just individuals or small groups out riding at their own pace. When it gets dark, come on out to the after party which will be just up the road at my house. Weather looks like it will be perfect for a bon fire! Of course there will always be records spinning in the bike barn too. Brats and hot dogs will be provided but there is plenty of room on the grill if you have something specific you want to bring to grill (like a veggie burger for example). BYOB and maybe some chips or something if you feel like it. You can even try your hand at scratching records and wear the gold chain if you want-
Directions to after party - Drive toward Cannonsburg Ski Area, turn north on Myers Lake road about 1/2 mile, then right (east) on Kreuter another half mile to 7101 Kreuter. Party starts when it gets to dark to ride without lights.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Luton Park....Black Loop

The new Black Loop is open for riding at Luton Park. The 2.7 mile trail is similar to the Red Loop. It is all signed and arrowed and you will find the entrance on your right just after the first bridge (if you are starting at the barn). It will wind and loop all over the northeast corner of the property, cross the Blue Trail once and dump you out right near the same bridge. We have one large log pile option to create and quite a few bench cuts to put in but it is all ride able, enjoy! With all the loops complete, the trail system now totals 9.3 miles. The largest mountain bike trail system in Kent County.

Please remember to let the trails at Luton Park dry for at least two days after it rains. Currently (8-29-09) the Blue Loop and portions of the Yellow and Orange have large muddy sections that are growing by the day as people tend to try riding around them. If you encounter mud puddles it is best to ride straight through them so the trail will not get wider.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Late notice: Luton trail day 8-26-09, 6pm

Meet at the Luton Barn at 6pm tomorrow night (Wednesday 8-26-09) and we will try to get the Black Loop open. I have counted over 130 saplings to dig out of the trail tread and 1.5 miles of the loop still needs to be raked. Need to run a string trimmer in a few areas as well. We have 9 Pulaski's or weed wrenches to dig saplings out, a string trimmer and 7-8 hard rakes available. With a good turnout I bet we could open it for riding. With the game area closure just around the corner and this park remaining open during hunting season it sure would be nice to have this loop rideable. Hate to have it sit all winter. Let me know if you can help so I can get a head count for tools.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Workdays: Owassipe 8/16, Robinette's 8/22, Luton 8/23

This trail day will begin at 10am and last until at least 6. Some of you have worked with us before and so the drill is pretty much the same. Here's what we'll need to do; General trail maintenance and cleanup. The Scouts usually leave quite a mess just because they don't mind climbing over fallen trees. There will be several crews established for different jobs. This will be assigned during the pre-work meeting at the trailhead. New Trail:Some of the bigger jobs may include routing a new trail to replace the part of the Blue that crosses Camp Gerber property. This was in the fine print of the new terms that Matt V had to agree to. We just didn't need to worry about it when the trails were last open prior to Scout Camp.Ranger Al's Special Needs Crew: A very positive benefit for all trail users is keeping Al happy. This crew will be doing this most important job. Usually it's small jobs around camp. New Sign Crew: There will be at least one new sign at the trailhead parking area. Jim Samlow is building it currently and this will need painting for a shiny, new look. This will be the main bulletin board to be used for all trail users. It will be vastly more informative and useful than the old one. It will facilitate the new waiver system that is mandatory. There will also be new signage out on the trail. All these new signs were paid for through a donation by the W.MI Coast Riders Bike Club. Recommended Work Accessories: Bring your bike if you can. Be dressed more for a work day than a riding day. Bring any handy work tools. Small and/or folding saws, gloves, any small container for carrying paint and a small brush please. Trail crews will be asked to remark the blue or red trails as needed. I have the paint. A leaf or garden rake and hand clippers is a good idea, too. Basically, you all know what a clean trail looks like. Just consider this and bring what you've got. Also, please bring your own food and drink. the lunch budget was reallocated into the sign budget!Your Reward: Besides a making a great trail even better, you will be credited with half off the annual $60 pass. The new trail use terms have extended our riding and hiking season. This makes it a better deal than the old days. Please call or email with any questions! Happy Trails, Bryan Myers cell:231-557-3396

Robinettes: 8/22/09 9:00 am, trim trail and open new section!
Luton Park: 8/23/09 9:00 am, rake, bench cut and trim open 3 mile black loop

Friday, August 7, 2009

Luton Park Trail Day this Saturday August 8th, 9am

POSTPONED UNTIL AUGUST 23RD...APPROACHING HEAVY THUNDERSTORMS COULD BE VERY DANGEROUS WITH ALL THE WIDOWMAKERS AT LUTON PARK. Join us for another trail day on August 8th at 9:00 am. Meet at the Luton Barn on Kies Ave. Help us cut new trail. Currently we are about 2/3 of the way through the Black Loop (previously stated as the White loop). Chapter tools provided but we could use additional rakes for the day. Come rain or shine. With a good turnout we should be able to open this loop!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

WMMBA Meeting Minutes - August 3, 2009

Western Michigan Mountain Biking Association

Meeting Minutes

Date: August 3, 2009

Location: Mangiamo Restaurant – 2nd Floor, Grand Rapids, MI

Board Members Present: Rick Plite - President, Martin Hall-Treasurer, Nate Phelps-State Representative, Jennifer Bechtel – Secretary

Total Attendence: 5 members, 1 guest, 3 board members

Start time: 6:30 p.m.


Meeting called to order at 6:34 p.m. – Rick Plite


Minutes recap from June 1, 2009 – Rick Plite


BikeStock Recap – Rick Plite

Was held last Saturday in Grand Rapids.

WMMBA had a membership table and acquired 8 new members. WELCOME!

Raffled off a donated Giant bike.


Jason Schwab has linked-up our blog spot to Facebook and Twitter. – Rick Plite

Just a reminder that the blog spot is available to all board members to write a story, make a post. More updates = more readers.


Stanaback Park Meeting – Rick Plite

City of Kentwood approached us about putting mountain bike trail on this 40 acres.

Location is 36th and Breton in Kentwood.


Gezon Park trail possibility – Rick Plite

Nate & Dennis met with Chad Root to consider putting in mountain bike trails at Gezon Park in Wyoming, MI.


State Games of Michigan Coming 2010 – Rick Plite

Put on by West Michigan Sport Commission next June.

Committee members in place. Contact Rick if interested in joining committee to design the type of race and location.


Yankee Springs Time Trial Committee – Rick Plite

Looking for Committee members for the 2010 race

Third Sunday in April


MidWest Mountain Bike Summit Committee – Rick Plite

Current members include Nate, Jason, and Aaron. Need 3-4 others!!


Brown County Indiana Bike Trip – Rick Plite

Had a great trip on a great trail system during July 18th bike trip.

Planning chapter trip to there again the weekend of Oct 23rd – 24th

6.5 hr drive. Plan full three-day weekend.

Have cabins, lodge, indvl. Rooms, nice restaurants in the area.


NCT Epic Trail Event – Rick Plite

October 9th – 11th

$145/person which includes everything, even the Founders.

A certified medic/mechanic will be the sweep this year.

Four spots still available!


Halloween Party Planned – Rick Plite

Possible location – Mill Creek Tavern in Comstock Park with band


Film Festival – Nate Phelps/Rick Plite

In conjunction with the Rapid Wheelman

January/February time frame.

Already have first film lined up.


14.0 Treasury Report – Martin Hall

14.1 Currently at a low point in funding, especially in terms of planned activities.

14.3 We need fresh ideas for how to fund all these great activities!


State Report – Nate Phelps

Funding is looking good for the MMBA overall due to spending less over the last few years. Individual chapters encourage to apply for grants from MMBA for local projects.

33% drop in membership. Will return to paper reminders, in addition to 90, 60, 30 day email reminders to renew.

Next Bent Rim Bugle will be last paper version. New pdf version will be in full color and longer. The February issue will still be print version each year.

Proposing an Advocacy Committee which will include hiring a part-time lobbyist to have a presence in Lansing. Possibly also a grant writer.

Looking at more non-race events at the State level.

Annual meeting will be inside this year. Either Lansing or Battle Creek. Looking for a facility that will allow bringing in dirt to create a pump track.


16.0 Green Grand Rapids Update – Nate Phelps

16.1 In October, the final event is to present the five year Master Plan for the City of Grand Rapids which includes the Recreation Master Plan.

16.2 Nate has pushed for the opportunity for Greenspace and single track in City Parks.


Bicycle Friendly Community Update – Nate Phelps

Part I was in April. Part II will be submitted this week.

Trying for a bronze level, to be updated each year.

City planners are considering the statistics showing more people move to cities that have bicycle-friendly communities.


Trail Coordinator Reports

Luton – Rick Plite: Trail day this Saturday (Aug 8th) to rake and cut out stumps. Had couple more trail days and now the black loop (previously white loop) adds 3 miles. Will have 9.3 miles when completed.

Ski Area – via Rick Plite: Met w/Ski Area reps and major changes include

Please, DO NOT ride across bridge nearest dumpster. That is for their maintenance vehicles and the blind corner creates a hazard.

Do not ride up the double-chair hill (trying to prevent erosion).

Do not use the gate in/out of Egypt Valley Rd.

Please follow signs that have been built, purchased, and put up.

Robinette’s – Glen: August 22nd trail day when will extend on the north side.

The Robinette’s have been brush-hogging. Arrows have been put up.

Ionia – Guy: Please do not do work out there without notifying Guy first so he can contact DNR to let them know you will be out there.

DNR working on creating a Rails-to-Trails out there that would allow going around the swampy area (old trash dump and archeological site). Possibly next summer.

A reminder that Trail Coordinators who need to rent additional equipment for spring clearing can request extra funds above their current limit.


18.0 Attendence at Meetings – Martin Hall

18.1 Seeking input to increase attendance at these meetings. Decision was made to market more effectively by repeating invites on Facebook and also emailing chapter members.

18.2 Need location that is quiet, non-smoking, serves food/alcohol.

18.3 Jason S. noted Twitter/Facebook users can opt-in to receive text messages to see when our pages are updated.


19.0 Next meeting: October 5, 2009 –Mangiamos


20.0 Motion to adjourn – Martin Hall. Nate Phelps seconded. Motion passed.

18.1 Meeting Adjourned at 7:31 p.m.


These minutes to be posted at:



Cannonsburg Ski Area requests

I recently met with the Ski Area management they have a requested a few changes in regards to riding on their property. They have asked me to post them up here.
#1 Please enter and exit the Ski Area property via the bridge located near the main lodge. The bridge near the maintenance building is now closed to foot or bike traffic. A couple reasons for this, the machinery in this area is dangerous and they use this bridge for vehicle traffic. They have had a few close calls with riders bombing over the bridge and nearly having head on collisions.
#2 Due to erosion, please don't ride up and down the ski slopes. Stay on designated bike trails only.
#3 Also due to erosion, the red gated entry off Egypt Valley Road is now closed to bike traffic. Please enter the property at the main driveway on Cannonsburg Road.
#4 Do not ride during the evening of Picnic Pops (5pm-11pm) every Thursday and Friday during July
They will be posting signs with all the changes and moving the Trail Head Sign to a more prominent location. I know habits are hard to break but these rules come at the request of the Ski Area and we are their guests. This is private property after all. Please spread the word so we can continue to enjoy the trails!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Cannonsburg Trail Day this Sunday, Aug 2nd

Join us for a trail day at the Cannonsburg Ski Area from 9am-1pm. We will do light trail work on the xc trails and the skills park trails. Maybe some rock armoring on the springs located on the creek trail. Bring loppers, gloves, bug spray and water, all other tools provided. Lunch provided! Rain or shine.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

State Games of Michigan

The Western Chapter is pround to announce that we will be holding a mountain bike race in West Michigan in conjuction with the State Games of Michigan June 25-27th 2010!

Sunday, July 12, 2009


Thanks to everyone that came out today! The 16 volunteers racked up another 60 man hours by cutting another mile or so on the new Black Loop. I would guess we have another mile to go until we reach the end of the loop and then all the bench cutting and fine tuning begins. Building all these trail is tough work and takes time but these trail will be here for years to come and everyone should be proud to be a part of them. A special thank you to Jody's Restaurant for the delicious wraps and to Jody Beard for the chocolate chip cookies! Stop in for lunch or dinner after a ride sometime.

We will hold another trail day on August 8th at 9am, come on out and help us cut open the remaining section!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Bikestock 2009- Bicycle Festival

The Western Chapter will be present for the Bikestock event in Downtown Grand Rapids on August 1st, come say hi and enjoy the festival.

Cannonsburg Ski Area and Picnic Pops closure notice

The Picnic Pops start this Thursday evening July 9th and run every Thursday and Friday night through the 31st. Riding during the Picnic Pops is not allowed. If you show up to ride the trails, you will be asked to leave. Please choose another location to ride on these evenings.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Luton Park Trail Day July 12th, 9am

Join us for another trail day on July 12th 2009 at 9:00 am. Meet at the Luton Barn on Kies Ave. Help us cut new trail. Currently we are about 1/3 of the way through the Black Loop (previously stated as the White loop). Bring rakes, chain saws and lopers. Jody's of Rockford lunch provided at about 12:30. Come rain or shine. Watch for another trail day in August if we don't get this section finished on 7/12

Monday, June 29, 2009

Wake Wars

7-14-09 NOTICE: WE WILL NOT BE ATTENDING....The wMMBA and GRBMX will be on site during the upcoming Wake Wars, a new event at The Bob in Downtown Grand Rapids on July 25th and 26th. A dirt pump track and jump line are in the works! Open to all. More info as it develops.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Chapter Meeting Minutes - June Meeting

Western Michigan Mountain Biking Association

Meeting Minutes

Date: June 1, 2009

Location: Mangiamo Restaurant – 2nd Floor, Grand Rapids, MI

Board Members Present: Rick Plite - President, Jason Dew-Vice President, Martin Hall-Treasurer, Nate Phelps-State Representative, Jennifer Bechtel – Secretary

Total Attendence: 5 members, 1 guest, 5 board members

Start time: 6:30 p.m.

Meeting called to order at 6:35 p.m. – Rick Plite

Introduction of Guest – Jason Schwab – Rick Plite

Minutes recap from February 2, 2009 – Rick Plite.

Treasurer’s Report – Martin Hall

MTB Summit Recap at Cannonsburg Ski Area– Jason Dew

150 paid attendees, 50 plus volunteers.

Some overlapping events in other areas drew down planned attendance.

Epic Ride recap – Rick Plite: 20-25 people (good).

GR Bicycle Summit – Nate Phelps

Friends of Grand Rapids came from this. Help from Greater GR Bicyclists Coalition.

Hoping for Bicycle Friendly Community – Bronze level.

Green Grand Rapids – Nate Phelps

Four more board meetings.

Looking for public opinion on Master plan filed every five years w/DNR.

Working with Susan Schultz (City Planner)

Grand Rapids Bike Park – Nate Phelps

A shared facility with the GR BMX group.

Looking positive at this point.

State Report – Nate Phelps

Request for pay increase by President denied by Committee.

Committee listed focus goals for the MMBA President, such as increase membership.

There will be a State Board Meeting Face-to-Face this month, June 6th, in Grand Rapids.

Michigan Mountain Bike Patrol – Nate Phelps

Newly formed.

Local member is Tim Keating.Trail Coordinator Reports – Rick Plite

Luton Park Trail Days on weekends and evening nights have been successful. Considering Adopt-A-Mile Trail volunteer program at Luton Park.

June 20th is Game Are Trail Day. Ken Curtis is the coordinator.

Nation Trails Day – Rick Plite

Merrell sponsoring June 6thTrail Day at Luton Park.

Posted signs at area bike shops. Merrell employees are being encouraged to attend Trail Day.

New Trail! – Rick Plite- Location: Belding, MI. Google: Lightning Bend Park.

Needs to be ridden and enjoyed.

14.0 Mid West Women’s Clinic – by Rick Plite/Jennifer Bechtel

14.1 Weekend of June 13th at Brown County State Park in Indiana.

14.2 Friday night Lights ride if interested. Meals provided Saturday.

14.3 Pay $45 pre-registration or $60 day-of.

14.4 http://www.midwestwomensclinic.com/

15.0 Upcoming Events – Rick Plite

15.1 CANCELED Rapid Wheelman and WMMBA combining for a Cannonsburg Ski Area trail riding day June 27th at 2 p.m. with hot dogs/hamburgers after. CANCELED Check Calendar for more details.

15.2 BIKESTOCK – a 2009 Bicycle Festival at Ah-Nab-Awen Park in Grand Rapids on August 1st from 12 – 6 p.m. They have asked WMMBA to participate.

16.0 NCT Epic Ride – Rick Plite

16.1 80 miles w/halfway option

16.2 Set 1 price/person at $145.00. This includes two nights lodging, meals, and covered vehicle for bicycle transportation (improving over last year).

17.0 Next meeting: August 3, 2009 –Mangiamos

18.0 Motion to adjourn – Martin Hall. Nate Phelps seconded. Motion passed.

18.1 Meeting Adjourned at 7:30 p.m.

After meeting discussion: Jason Schwab volunteered to help WMMBA coordinate on Twitter, Facebook, and blogspot sites for updates.

These minutes to be posted at:


Friday, June 12, 2009

Cannonsburg Game Area Trail Day Update

If you have it in your calendar already- please note that the trail day was moved from June 20th to June 27th (Saturday). Help out on the 27th at one of the areas most ridden trail!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Dirt Rag Summit review

Midwest MTB Summit Recap

Posted: June 9th, 2009 by Andy Bruno

We promote and cover mountain bike advocacy a lot here at Dirt Rag, arguably more than any other magazine. We do it because we believe it is critical for continued access to trails, and to help promote and grow the sport we love. We also do it to give some much-deserved recognition to the good work of all the local clubs and volunteers out there building and maintaining trails for all of us. These local clubs do some amazing work with minimal resources, all in the name of building better trails.

Recently the Dirt Rag World Tour had a chance to get together with several Midwest local trails advocacy groups for the 9th Annual Midwest Mountain Bike Summit in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This was a meeting of people on the front line of trail access, from groups like the Michigan Mountain Bike Association (MMBA), Wisconsin Off Road Bicycle Association (WORBA), Friends of Off-Road Cycling (FORC) Quad Cities, Gateway Off-Road Cyclists (GORC) St. Louis, Chicago Area Mountain Bikers (CAMBr), and Wisconsin Off-Road Bicycling Association (WORBA) to name a few.

These are the kind of people who make it happen in your neck of the woods. They’re out there swinging Pulaskis and McLeods building and maintaining trails. They’re also the ones working with local land managers to gain access to areas so that new trails can be built.

The three day summit/festival was a great way to share information, meet new friends, and learn new trail-building techniques. IMBA was there in force with a 2-day trail school with hands-on technical trail building demonstrations, along with Club-Care and Gateway Trails presentations. Plus there were other workshops and seminars focusing on all aspects of mountain bike advocacy with nationally and regionally known presenters. Stihl and Ditch Witch brought some toys for hands-on trail building at the Cannonsburg Ski Area. There were also races and organized rides from the ski area. Last, but certainly not least, the summit concluded with a 40-mile epic ride. And Founders Brewing provided some much needed refreshments after three days of learning, digging and riding. Advocacy never tasted so good.

A special thanks goes out to Nate Phelps and his crew from the Michigan Mountain Bike Association for hosting this event. Word is, the Midwest Mountain Bike Summit will once again be held in Grand Rapids in 2010. Keep an eye open for details at: www.midwestmtbsummit.com.

National Trail Day- Recap

June 6th was National Trail Day and the Western Chapter along with Merrell celebrated by cutting in 1.25 miles of new trail at Luton Park. A record 43 people attended! Merrell supplied water bottles for particpants and held a raffle for a couple of gift certificates, congrats Jeff Corey and Russ Greenwood! Look for another trail day later this summer so we can finish the loop and open it for riding. Currently it is a dead end so we left it closed for now.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Owasippe CLOSED June 8, 2009

Owasippe CLOSED June 8, 2009

Bryan Myers has had communications from the rangers at Owassippe- Al and Larry
From Bryan: The trails are closed as of sundown tonight for the scout camp.
There has also been illegal trail pirating during the recent closure. This type of defiant behavior will definitely close the door to Owasippe for all! Under the new conditions, we are on a one year probation out there. This is private property. Trail use is a privilege.

After the scout camps are done for the season, there will be a new sign posted at the trail head with a new sign-in procedure so that all riders are accounted for. Please remember that Al and Larry want us out there. They are on our side because bikers are excellent security camera's. Do not confront them in the same manner that someone did whoe drove a large red Dodge truck (license plate "BYU...") in March. The trails will be closed for good and Matt's hard work to re-open will be poisoned forever.


There will be a happy trail work day in Aug as soon as we get the green light. Crews will be setting up the new trail signs, courtesy of the West Michigan Coast Riders Bike Club. Please sign up in advance. Many of you are already on the list.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Epic North Country Trail Ride with wMMBA and PM Lodge

Here are all the details for the 2009 ride:

When: Oct 9th-11th 2009 Where: Marilla Trail Head (Beers Rd) to Baldwin via the NCT (one dirt/paved road bypass near High Bridge approx 8 miles long). Total distance is about 78 miles with a bail out option at the halfway point.

Plan: Meet at the Pere Marquette Lodge in Baldwin on Friday evening. Everyone attends a debreifing meeting Friday at 9pm, PM Lodge
Saturday we rise early for continental breakfast. PM Lodge shuttles us to the Marilla Trail Head and then waits for us at the Freesoil Rd Trailhead (approx half way) with a catered lunch of P&J, snacks, fruit etc. After the trailside lunch the big ride will finish the southern portion of the trip to Bowman Lake Trail Head, then the 8 mile paved road to PM Lodge where a keg of Founders Ale and a gourmet dinner await us. (While this may start as a group ride, riders are encouraged to ride at the pace that they desire and therefore eliminate the sensitivity to large groups of cyclists on the NCT). We will have a sweeper rider to see that everyone gets through the ride. Riders must carry their own tools and water to get them to the 1/2 way point or the full length. The trail is very well marked but maps will be provided. Some of the dirt road sections can become tricky to follow.

Options: Riders may choose to start or finish at Freesoil Rd if desired, eliminating half of the miles. Tip: the section from Beers Road to Freesoil Road is the best section with greater variety of terrain but it is also the hilliest portion. If you prefer flatter terrain and a shorter distance, ride Freesoil South or skip the early shuttle and ride from PM Lodge north to lunch at Freesoil, then return via the shuttle. It would also be possible for someone to go for a hike from the Freesoil Trailhead while others are riding. Perfect for that non-riding spouse.
We have room for 34 people. The room scenarios are all a bit different.

7 double rooms with two double beds in each room equals 28 people. 3 single rooms with one double bed equals 6 people. The Lodge is within walking distance to the Pere Marquette River, and sleeps a maximum of 34 people in 10 rooms. All rooms have air conditioning and whirlpool tubs with a shower. A double room features two double beds and a kitchenette, which feature a small refrigerator, a two-burner stovetop, and sink and dishes. A single room features a double bed with a whirlpool tub next to it. Cable TV and wireless Internet is available in all rooms and in the large central living room area. Room #15 is handicap accessible. The attached dining room is a great place to gather and enjoy the dinner provided. A grill and campfire area is located behind the lodge as well. We will all convene in the main lodge or at a bonfire each night.

Please check this closely. My hopes are that everyone will choose the four to a double room or 2 to a single room so that we can accommodate all 34 of us that wish to go. In other words, if everyone were to book two in a double and one in a single we would only have a group of 17 people. I think we have enough interest to use all 34 spots. We encourage friends to bunk together, 2 couples to share a room. There is a chance a few cabins could open up for us as well, providing additional beds if the interest is there.

Each person gets lodging Fri and Sat night Oct 9th and 10th 2009, continental breakfast, the shuttle, route map, trailside lunch, a very nice dinner (request vegetarian with Frank when making reservations if desired) and Founders beer for the recovery party Saturday night. New this year, we will have a covered truck or trailer to haul the bikes and 2 busses if need be. We will also have a PM Staff member wait with a bus for the absolute last rider at the half way point. These two items are responsible for the slightly higher fee this year.

We cannot split these amenities up. It is all or nothing. No camping option, no shuttle elimination etc.

Cost is $145 per person for the weekend

Excluding 6% sales tax.
Pere Marquette Lodge supports the MMBA and therefore has already discounted these rates by 15% for MMBA members. Please sign up for a MMBA membership if you are not a member. A MMBA membership is tax deductible.
All reservations need to be made with Frank or Josh at the Pere Marquette Lodge (231-745-3972) by July 1st 2009. First come first served. Please mention Western MMBA event.

Cancellation Policy
* All cancellations must be in writing to PM Lodge
* Reservations canceled within 14 days of reservation date will be charged in full
* Reservations canceled within 30 days of reservation date will result in lost deposit

Here are all the details of the 2009 Western Chapter NCT Epic Ride

Monday, June 1, 2009

Luton Park Trail Day this Saturday June 6th

Join us for a trail day June 6th at Luton Park in Rockford. In celebration of National Trail Day, Merrell has joined us as the event sponsor! Come on out and get some Merrell goodies and have a chance to win a $100 gift certificate! Meet at the Keis Ave barn and we will walk in from there.

I can't think of a better way to celebrate National Trail Day than cutting in a brand new section of trail with tools donated by Merrell. Yep, new tools and new trail, here is your chance to help create another 1.5-2 miles similar to the Red Loop terrain!

9:00 am -1:00 pm lunch and tools provided. Bring your own water, boots, gloves, rain jackets?, bug spray.
We could use additional rakes and loppers. If you have one to bring along please do. If you have a chain saw we could use those too.
We meet rain or shine

Thursday, May 21, 2009

2 day rate now available!

2009 Midwest Mountain Bike Summit

Midwest MTB Summit
The 2009 Midwest Mountain Bike Summit that will take place on May 29-31, 2009 at the Cannonsburg Ski Area near Grand Rapids, MI. The three-day Summit will provide educational and networking opportunities to over three hundred mountain bicyclists, trail builders and advocates from across the Midwest.
More information:

Monday, May 18, 2009

Cannonburg Game Area Trail Day follow up

Cannonsburg State Game Area
Today a team of Volunteers embarked on the first Organized Trail Day of 2009 at the Game Area. The focus today was reclaiming the overgrown main trail head parking lot on 4 mile road. Trimming, Tilling and Tamping reclaimed approximately 30 feet of width to the back half of the parking area. The idea is to promote parking in three rows vs two in order to allow more vehicle parking in the parking lot relieving the parking out on 4 Mile Road a long time complaint of the local residence. So try parking as far to the left and right as possible and in the center next time your out for a ride. A special Thanks goes out to Johnny Carinos Italian Restaurant at Knapps Corner for donating a great lunch. Thanks Mike!
Cannonsburg State Game Area
Today a team of 13 eager Trail Crew Volunteers completed the second planned Trail Day of the season at the Game Area. I must say we knocked one out of the park at the game area today! The Crew completed the long awaited trail reroutes flagged and approve last year. These sections are in the 3rd section of trail before the parking lot at 3 mile road. Work included reroutes around two severely eroded fall line trail and sand pits. Reclaiming of the old ruts and trail was also completed making the old trail almost disappear. Great work team, awesome job! Thanks you.
Thanks to BC Pizza Belmont for a great discount on Pizza and Salad. And a Hugh THANK YOU goes out to Nader Atallah at Home Run Deli and Liquor on Post Dr. (just West of the Exit off 131N.) Amazing Sandwiches, Greek Pasta Salads, Wings, Meatballs, Jerky and Sweets (all kinds of stuff) plus a Great Deal on Founders 6 packs - $7.99!!! Check them out before or after a ride.
Stay Tuned for Details on the June 20th Trail Day.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Cannonburg Game Area Trail Day

Saturday MAY 16th 9:00 AM main trail head. We need a good turn out on the one. Please come out for the day, for an hour, what ever time you can donate will be a huge help as we prep our Heritage Trail for the upcoming MidWest Mountain Bike Summit! As always lunch will be provided. Bring gloves and H2O.
Thanks in advance!

Luton dump recap

Two picture equals a thousand words.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

GR Parks event

I Love GR Parks event- http://www.friendsofgrparks.org/

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – May 7, 2009 – Do we want better parks, to become a bicycle friendly community, to build a whitewater course through downtown Grand Rapids or organize more farmers markets? If so, how can citizens, government and business take action to make these visions a reality? Who are the champions who will move pieces of the green agenda forward in Grand Rapids?
At Green Gathering: Actions on Wednesday, May 13, 6:30-8:30 p.m., the public is invited to review three park special studies – Joe Taylor, Ball-Perkins and Butterworth Landfill – and three Grand River special studies – 201 Market Street, eastside riverwalk extension from the Blue Bridge to Wealthy St. and a “rapids” run on the Grand River. Future action then will be prioritized based on recommended strategies for Natural Systems, Greening, Parks and Recreation, Connections, the Grand River and Local Food.
The forum takes place at Harrison Park Elementary, 1440 Davis Ave. NW in Grand Rapids. It is the third of three community forums hosted by Green Grand Rapids, an 18-month project launched by the City to update the 2002 city-wide Master Plan and the Parks and Recreation Master Plan with an emphasis on green initiatives. For information about the meeting, go to http://www.greengrandrapids.us/ or call 616-456-3031. A final fall 2009 open house meeting will also be held.
“This is a very important part of Green Grand Rapids – where individuals can make a difference. Their actions have a direct impact on making our city even better,” says Suzanne Schulz, planning director for the City of Grand Rapids. “The special studies show how many green objectives and strategies can be achieved with concept plans developed with public participation. The next step is challenging. We must set priorities because financial resources are limited. People who are passionate about the Green Grand Rapids vision need to step forward, like the Friends of Grand Rapids Parks and organizers of the Bicycle Summit have done. We need strong, committed community leadership to be actively involved in making Grand Rapids a more desirable place to live, work and play.”
About Green Grand Rapids
Green Grand Rapids is an 18-month project designed to update the 2002 city-wide Master Plan and the Parks and Recreation Master Plan with an emphasis on green initiatives. Financial supporters of Green Grand Rapids include Grand Rapids’ Downtown Development Authority, Wege Foundation, Frey Foundation, Grand Rapids Community Foundation and Dyer-Ives Foundation. For information, go to http://www.greengrandrapids.us/ or call 616-456-3031.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Luton Park Update

May 9th will be our next trail day at Luton Park, we plan to remove all of the items in the dump pile on the yellow loop. Padnos has already agreed to provide a dumpster for scrap metal and we plan to have a dumpster for trash as well. The problem will be that we need plenty of "runners" to go back and forth the 1/2 mile from dump to barn. If you have a pick up truck, quad, skid loader, trailer, etc. let me know so we can coordinate the haulers for the day. Then we need plenty of people to pick up the scrap and trash. Most of these items are tires and 5 gallon metal buckets. Please bring leather gloves and heavy work boots for protection! Do you have little ones that would like to help? This is the perfect chance, tons of tin cans and unbroken glass bottles to pick up too. Again bring gloves. We could also use flat blade shovels, leaf blowers, rakes, plastic trash cans. Spread the word on this one, lets make Luton Park a better place for all to see.

Update: Forest Hills Foods deli department has donated box lunches for the event, thanks Jeff!
Padnos Iron and Metal has so graciously donated a scrap metal dumpster and Allied Waste will provide the trash dumpster, thank you Doug, Lee and Jan!

We had a total of 20 people on April 26th and the rain held off until we got the Yellow Loop completely fine tuned. Due to the heavy rain last night, the very first section has a 20 foot area underwater, this is easy to avoid by simply riding the old original hiking trail near by. A total of 80 man hours were put into the trail work today! The new bench cuts will not only improve the flow of the ride but also lessen the erosion that storm water causes by running down the trail. Good work everyone! A special thank you to the Bissell cycling team for providing the lunch today.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

2009 Yankee Springs Time Trial Recap

2009 Yankee Springs Time Trial Recap

Thanks to all volunteers for the hardwork, some starting last Oct 2008, to make the 20th Anniversary of the Time Trial a huge success. Feedback from racers online and via emails are overwhelmingly positive!

Results show 550 registered racers. What's even MORE significant- only 126 of these were day-of registrations, which means we had a 77% pre-registration rate via BikeReg.com. We cannot understate how important pre-registration is to helping the check-in process for the volunteers on race day! This percentage is unprecedented for most mountain bike races.

Niel Scharphorn, sporting BikeTag #1 for the second year, took first place in the elite category for the second year in a row with a TWO-lap time of 1:29:22 He did his FIRST lap nearly as fast as previous years! Lap #1 = 43:57, Lap #2 = 45:25 (2008 his one lap time was 43.32)-- Congratulations Niel!

Results are here:
Yankee Springs Time Trial website -and-
Race Services

The Anniversary Pint Glasses were a great success- and we sold 63 online at $5.00 each in addition to the glasses we gave to the 425 pre-registered riders. We sold 61 Time Trail T-shirts online via BikeReg and a significant number of shirts were sold on site as well by Jason Bechtel, who admirably manned the Shirts and Pintglass table.

Also, the timing company's online results search was highly applauded

On to next year-- YEAHHHHH!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

2009 Midwest Mountain Bike Summit

2009 Midwest Mountain Bike Summit

Midwest MTB Summit
The 2009 Midwest Mountain Bike Summit that will take place on May 29-31, 2009 at the Cannonsburg Ski Area near Grand Rapids, MI. The three-day Summit will provide educational and networking opportunities to over three hundred mountain bicyclists, trail builders and advocates from across the Midwest.
More information:

Monday, April 13, 2009

New Bike Park to be built in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS -- Mountain bikers will have a new place to ride within the Grand Rapids city limits this summer.

A mountain bike trail and skills area are slated to be built in May at the former southwest Little League site at 580 Kirtland, now the home of a BMX bike track operated by Helmet-On.

The project comes after three years of discussions between area mountain bikers and the Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation department. Cyclists have been asking where a city park trail might be built. City officials say they found a location that fits. Click link for full story....... http://www.mlive.com/outdoors/index.ssf/2009/04/grand_rapids_mountain_bike_tri.html

Saturday, April 11, 2009

April 2009 WMMBA Meeting Minutes

Western Michigan Mountain Biking Association

Meeting Minutes

Amendment added 04/12/09 (in red)

Date: April 6, 2009

Location: Mangiamo Restaurant – 2nd Floor, Grand Rapids, MI

Board Members Present: Jason Dew-Vice President, Jennifer Bechtel – Secretary

Excused Absence: Rick Plite - President, Martin Hall-Treasurer, Nate Phelps-State Representative, Heather Kubiak-State Representative

Total Attendence: 9 members, 1 guest

Start time: 6:30 p.m.

Meeting called to order at 6:35 p.m. – Jason Dew

Guest - Kevin McKurren

Presented updates for the Bicycle Summit for April 24th 8:30 – 4:30.

There will be three presentations and then break-out sessions.

Register on the City’s Website or at Green Grand Rapids.


Minutes recap from February 2, 2009 – by Jason Dew

Film Festival recap – by Jason Dew. A successful event.

Strategic Planning sessions Review – by Jason Dew. Continuing process.

Yankee Springs Time-Trial Review – by Jason Dew

Need volunteers to help with trail work and day of event.

Trail Day is April 11th.

Upcoming Trail Days – by Jason Dew

Game Area – will be rock re-armoring (rather than re-routing).

Hands-on armoring demo from GORC (Gateway Off-Road Cyclist) at the Mid-West Mountain Bike Summit this May

Ski-Area – de-berming, remove face slappers, add pavers for downhill areas.

Please note the ski area is doing work on their tubing route and we will have to ride around this area to access the trail.

Please sign up for the training sessions so we can have a few credentialed people at each trail day to help with the volunteers.Attend the 3 hour classroom course on Friday and 1 hour hands-on "trail routing" course Saturday morning.

Mid West Mountain Bike Summit – by Jason Dew

Sign up for the summit. Register and get more information at: http://www.midwestmtbsummit.com/main/

Review of Equipment demos – by Jason Dew

Toro Dingo vs. Ditch Witch and more.

Other Trail Events – by Jennifer Bechte

Friends of Grand Rapids Parks April 16th at 3:30 p.m. in East Hills, at 910 Cherry St SE, to discuss redevelopment plans, including the Ball-Perkins charrette outcome. All invited to the GREEN WELL afterwards for Green Drinks at 5:15 p.m. http://www.greendrinksgr.org/

National Trail Day on June 6th at Luton Park Trail

NCT Epic Ride in October. Spots fill up fast. More info to come from Rick Plite.

11.0 Mid West Women’s Clinic – by Jennifer Bechtel

11.1 June 13th at Brown County State Park in Indiana.

11.2 Friday night Lights ride if interested. Meals provided Saturday.

11.3 Pay $45 pre-registration or $60 day-of.

11.4 http://www.midwestwomensclinic.com/

12.0 Next meeting: June 1, 2009

13. Meeting Adjourned at 7:15 p.m. by Jason Dew.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Western Chapter Calendar of Events

Western Chapter Calendar
Sunday 4/11/2009 Yankee Springs trail day

Saturday 4/18/2009 Cannonsburg Game Area trail day

Sunday 4/19/2009 Yankee Springs Time Trial

Sunday 4/26/2009 Luton Park trail day and Ionia trail day

Saturday 5/2/2009 Cannnonsburg Ski Area trail day
Sunday 5/3/2009 Ionia trail day

Saturday 5/9/2009 Luton Park trail day

Saturday 5/16/2009 Cannonsburg Game Area trail day

Fri-Sat-Sun May 29-30-31 Midwest Mountain Bike Summit in Grand Rapids

Saturday 6/6/2009 Luton Park trail day/ National Trails Day

Saturday 6/20/2009 Cannonsburg Game Area trail day

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Western MMBA Upcoming events

Western MMBA Upcoming events

Chapter meeting- A reminder that the Western Chapter has our meeting Monday April 6, 2009 630pm -730pm at Mangiamo! Grand Rapids, 1033 Lake Dr Se, Grand Rapids, MI 49506

Yankee Springs Trail Day April 11th, 2009 Trail work starts at 9:00am-12:00pm, lunch and tools provided. Meet at the Deep Lake trailhead

Cannonsburg State Gamearea Trail Day April 18th, 2009 Trail work starts at 9:00am-12:00pm, lunch and tools provided. Meet at the 4 Mile lot

Yankee Springs Time Trial April 19, 2009 Racers start at 10:00am

GR Bike Summit Friday, April 24, 2009 8:30am-4:00pm

Luton Park Trail Day April 26th, 2009 Trail work starts at 9:00am-12:00pm, lunch and tools provided. Meet at the Kies Ave barn

Cannonsburg State Gamearea Trail Day May 16th, 2009 Trail work starts at 9:00am-12:00pm, lunch and tools provided. Meet at the 4 Mile lot

Midwest MTB Summit Friday, Saturday, Sunday May 28-31st

National Trail Day at Luton Park June 6, 2009 Saturday 10:00am-3:00pm Tools provided by the Western MMBA.

Cannonsburg State Gamearea Trail Day June 20th, 2009 Trail work starts at 9:00am-12:00pm, lunch and tools provided. Meet at the 4 Mile lot