We had a very successful International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) Trail Care Crew (TCC) visit this past weekend. The Santa Cruz mountain biking community knocked IMBA’s socks off with our support of the event. They cited only 2 other visits in 2 years of travel that matched the number of volunteers, donations and swag Santa Cruz contributed.
On Thursday night, the TCC gave the Grassroots Advocacy: How to Get What You Want presentation to the club officers and key volunteers to MBoSC officers and key volunteers. MBoSC is the first group that this presentation was given to they correctly identified political engagement as our area of improvement as a club.
On Friday morning, the crew presented Better Living Through Trails: The power of mountain biking to improve your community to a diverse crowd: City employees, Parks and Rec, State Parks, Parks Commission members, bike community leaders, MBOSC member and officers.
On Saturday we had about 40 volunteers, State Parks and City of Santa Cruz staff attend an instructional workshop about building sustainable trails. Following a burrito lunch in the Wilder Ranch Barn the trail workers were shuttled to the top of Wilder Ranch and added drainage features to upper Zane Gray trail. The rains had eased up and we were fortunate to work in the sun. Volunteers were treated to free dinner, beer and schwag at Seabright Brewery after a great workday.
The local bike industry demonstrated their generosity in support of this event. All trail work volunteers got a nice Ibis beer glass and everyone got schwag. Bell/Blackburn donated full face and XC helmets, carbon and aluminum water bottle cages, Specialized donated a couple of S-works helmets and plenty of soft goods, Ibis donated hoodies, T-shirt and lots of beer glasses and John Caletti donated some nice T-shirts.
Some of the accomplishments from the visit include:
- We have a better sense of how to grow the political influence of the club.
- We informed a broad group of local stake holders on the economic and health benefits of a trail system
- We strengthened our partnerships with State Parks and the City of Santa Cruz
- We have 40 local mountain bikers trained in sustainable trail building – which should really help out on the Pogonip multi-use trail (MUT)
- We put in approximately 30+ sustainable drainage features along the upper Zane Gray trail in Wilder Ranch
Best quote from MBoSC member James Bradley: “We spent the morning with high quality classroom instruction followed by practicing it in field. Catered lunch, free dinner and beer and schwag. This is the kind of seminar that costs top dollar – and it was free? What a deal!”
We would like to thank Chris Pereira – Trails and Road Supervisor for this State Parks District – for working with Drew on finding a project that the crew can work on. Wilder Ranch Ranger Jamie Stamps for understanding the local mountain biking community’s desires for more legal and sustainable trails, being an advocate on our behalf and for hanging out with us at Seabright Brewery on Saturday night. I would also like to thank Meta Rhodeos from the City Parks Department for attending many of the sessions and for her work on the Pogonip MUT.
We would like to thank the sponsors of this event: Don from Bell Bike Helmets/Blackburn, Tracy from Mick’s Automotive, Shawn from Epicenter Cycling, Ian and Mallory from Specialized Bicycles, Marty from Digital Media Factory and Charlie and Jessica from Seabright Brewery.
Other thanks include:
* Seabright Brewery for donating a keg of their delicious Pelican Pale Ale and sodas.
* Digital Media Factory for providing a warm, dry space for the trail school classroom.
* ibis Cycles for the schwag and beer glasses for all volunteers.
* Karen Kefauver for plugging the weekend’s events in her Spin City column.
* Dave Smith and Shuttle Smith Adventures for shuttling a good portion of the trail workers and tools to the work site & back.
* Norma Jeans and Peet’s Coffee for coffee and pastries.
* Taqueria Vallarta for warm burritos on a cold, rainy trail work day.
Thank you to all trail volunteers for devoting a rainy Saturday to learn and practice building long-lasting sweet single track
Thanks to Drew Perkins, Mark Davidson, Eve Davidson, Chris Pereira, Jo Rathbun, John Fuchs, Michele Lamelin & Lindsay Overton for your work in organizing these events. A very special thanks to Shannon Armstrong for coordinating the entire event and having it run so smoothly.
Finally, we would like to thank Chris and Leslie Kehmeier for inspiring our community. They are incredible ambassadors of the sport. Every time a TCC crew visits Santa Cruz MBoSC grows in a very profound way.
What a great and productive visit! Full speed ahead on the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival!