August 2023 Board of Directors Meeting Minutes and Activity Reports

MORE – Board of Directors Meeting Minutes
August 14, 2023

Virtually present at meeting

Ernie Rodriguez – President

Neil Blake – Treasurer

David Beugelmans - Secretary

Tom Howe - VA Advocacy Director

Kathy Mihm – Ride Programs Director

Dave Magill - MD Advocacy Director

Rob Lowe – Membership Director

Clay Deming – Events Director



Casey Anderson


Not Present

Jali Fernando – Executive Secretary

Nate Frey – Communications Director



  • Financial Updates (Neil)
  • Net increase of $0.5k
  • Net general decrease -$3.2k
    • $11k general revenues
    • $7.1 memberships (includes a true up to Q2)
    • $1.6 other general
    • $1.3 interest on savings accounts
  • $14.1k general expenses
    • $6.3 ED cost
    • $3.3k MoCo Epic (key sanitation check)
    • $2.3k Trail Liaison meeting
  • Net restricted increase $3.7k
  • $4.8k restricted revenues
    • $3.0 Wakefield (donation from Transurban)
    • $0.9 James Long
    • $0.7 Lake Fairfax (fundraising for gates)
  • $1.2k restricted revenues - All Emmitsburg to cover the cost of the downed tree (covered by GTF transfer)
  • Membership Update (Rob)
    • In terms of transactions, not doing bad. The value is pretty low, but suspect we have some larger memberships coming through later this month.
    • Going to send out mid-month reminders. Very similar to July, where we ended up down only $300 from last year.
    • Year to date we are still positive against 2022 by about $400. Not sure where we are post-IMBA fee.
    • Total members this month were at 2102. Now we are probably at 2112, so we are continuing to go up, albeit a little slower.
    • We have increased by almost 60 members through May, June, and July.
    • Puts us on track for more than 2200 by the end of the year.
    • 29 new joins in July, vs 30 in June.
    • Total income taken in from IMBA is around $103k, approx, before fees.
    • Auto renewing members continue to slowly increase. Big jump in monthly members this month. A lot of members seem to like that.
    • We are not surpassing previous years, but we are seeing the same slow-down post pandemic where we aren’t seeing the same growth as during COVID-19 pandemic.
    • We are showing continued, linear growth here. Continuing to chug up the line.
    • We are growing our membership, so the money should continue to grow, but we won’t see a huge jump this year.
    • Clay: Is IMBA doing a fall membership drive?
      • Rob: I think so. They used to do it twice a year.
      • Ernie: Yes, it’s my understanding there will be a fall membership drive.
    • Trails
      • Virginia (Tom)
        • Lake Fairfax – they are going to do a big event for national trails day in September. They are going to plant some new trees, showing a different side of what we can do. They are trying to get an eagle scout project to rehab a trail. Also idea for an event in October to help raise awareness and additional funds.
        • Meadowood – Some new liaisons have come on. They have some trailwork scheduled for fall. There has been night riding at the park this year. Ernie had worked with DMV group to set that up.
        • Fort Dupont – Trailwork day at Fort Dupont in DC this weekend. Now allowed to dig, but will trim back growth and clean up park.
        • Loudon County – New liaison who is very engaged. New linear parks manager is into using new 12 acres of space. There is also a space called Edward Tillet that is about 20 acres. Trying to figure out what to do there. Maybe jump line.
          • Also interested in engaging with National Park Service. The trail that runs from Roosevelt Island to Great Falls (Potomac Heritage Trail), looking at getting access from Harpers Ferry to Leesburg.
        • Wakefield – Good turnout for trailwork day. Big trimming crew. Developed good synergy with DMV mountain bike club. They came out in force.
        • Fountainhead – Jeff has been working closely with NOVA Parks. Want to turn Fountainhead into even more of a destination for Mid-Atlantic. Have immediate project with $75k from park. Where mini golf course used to be they want to run a green trail down from there, as well as some blue and black features. Then when you jump in on green trail from the gate, they want to make a green return so it is beginner friendly. This is near term.
          • Five year plan would be to get some RTP money, as well as money from NOVA parks. The idea is to hopefully open running and equestrian trails to bikes. Also possibility for new areas for mountain bike features.
        • Maryland (Dave)
          • Patuxent - $100k grant to build next phase, have been working on getting the application in place to do that. Lots of paperwork involved. Drafted brief form of agreement that authorizes MORE to build the trail on DNR property. This coming along.
            • Also attempting to refurbish a parking lot. Working with Howard County. This is important because we can’t do any more trail building until we have this parking lot.
          • Frederick –
            • Sheduro is happening soon. Did hear that they limited to attendees to 400. Sold out in an hour.
            • Have been working on getting pump track agreements in place. Also working on raising donations. MOU will not obligate MORE to raise any money, but MORE will be venue through which people can make donations for the match. The city won’t contract for building of the contract until MORE has enough match money. And if MORE doesn’t get enough match money, then the city will walk away from the grant. The city has agreed to this.
          • Cosca – There has been a lot of trails added. There was a workday to fix a one-mile loop so that it has a proper climb. This went well. Now have 11 miles of trail. Also trying to get budget for a pump track.
          • Rivers Edge – We are mostly done with $65k of work. There are going to be some more bills coming in. Folks from RTP walked trail and said they are outside the 50 foot corridor they approved, but they let us not stop work and resubmit the track and approved readjustments.
          • Seneca Greenway – Getting this ready for use in MoCo Epic. Lots of progress here. Have one day permit because we aren’t going to get passage under Clopper Road done in time. Frank Comer has done an excellent job at stonework.
          • Southern Maryland – BLM to develop trails in Douglas Point, which is in Waldorf in Southern Maryland. There is 600 acres of land with some trails. Going to find some local people to develop another park with a lot of potential in an area that’s under served.
          • Schaefer – Complaint from folks that we aren’t doing enough vegetation maintenance and we are smoothing out trails and making them too easy.
          • Montgomery County – Looking for input on capital budget. It is easy to testify. Have also asked for county to create a high quality MICL race venue in Montgomery County. It will take some investment, but it’s possible.
        • Events
          • Activities Report (Clay)
            • Summer Picnic – went well despite storm damage. Everyone seemed happy. Wasn’t as well attended as two years ago, but 300 burgers and hot dogs were eaten. Maybe about 150 people. Impressed with the volunteers this year.
            • Fall Camping Trip – September 23 and registration is open. Lots of group rides and we all have fun.
          • MoCo Epic Update
            • 326 paid reservations
            • Jali is staying on top of the communications and mining Facebook material for a weekly recap. People look forward to those updates. People are reading them.
            • Important area of focus is filling the remaining aid stations.
            • The average dollar amount per participant is between $65-70.
            • Cautiously optimistic we will have about 1000 participants.
          • Ride Program Report (Kathy)
            • Been continuing with some objective of getting more beginner friendly rides out there for people. Made good progress in Montgomery County, with 4 rides per week that are beginner friendly.
            • Hasn’t had as much luck in VA because Kathy doesn’t have network there.
            • Rob: Will start asking at Thursday ride if people are interested to do rides.
            • Wants to get at least one ride per park, focusing on liaisons.
            • Been trying to hold at least one basic skills clinic per month. About 75% of participants join MORE.
          • Admin
            • Elections – need for write-ups and advertisement (Ernie)
              • This is for me and Tom, because we need to write something up and get it in communications and advertising the open board positions.
              • Learning from experience, if we try to recruit somebody it’s not as good as when someone comes to us with interest.
              • Tom and I need to get Jali a write-up about what to expect, what these positions are about, etc. Want to advertise and to use this to tell ourselves that we need to do this.


Activity Reports

  • President – Ernest (Ernie) Rodriguez
    • Outreach - Bike Bash 
    • Meeting with Arlington County for Pump Track possible locations
    • Participate with National Forest Service 3 day "Reimagine Recreation" strategic conference
    • Join Virginia Outdoors state organization to improve funding opportunities
    • Participate on Lake Accotink Dredging Task Force - revisit decision not to dredge
    • Quarterly call for US Forest Service project assignments
    • Follow-up call with Descubre el Bosque organization for possible partnership
    • Floor-up call with Greening Youth Foundation for possible partnership
    • Office 365 review; security, licenses, training
    • Meeting with Potomac Heritage Trail Alliance 
    • American Trails webinars; Risk management, Insurance, Adaptive trails
    • VA/DC Liaison Meeting
    • MD Liaison Meeting 
  • Jali Fernando – Executive Director
    • MoCo Epic planning and communications
    • Coordinated with NPS for Fort Dupont cleanup
    • Coordinated with Ledo Pizza for fundraiser
    • Met with Jon Posner and Diana Allen for Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day events with MICL
    • Helped Clay with planning for Summer Picnic
    • Attended MD trail liaison meeting
    • Weekly newsletter and regular social media posts 
  • Secretary – David Beugelmans
    • Coordinated board meeting and finalized minutes
  • MD Advocacy Director – Dave Magill
    • Pax $100k state grant – submit application, address comments, draft a required agreement between MORE and DNR related to access
    • Ad hoc trailwork – recruited a few new volunteers to do ad hoc trimming
    • Helped recruit people to speak at MoCo Parks 5 year budget hearings in early September
    • Worked with Ernie and Dan Green on terms for an MOU with City of Frederick re a paved pump track funded by an RTP grant
    • Addressed complaint email from Schaeffer riders unhappy with trimming and with trail smoothing
    • Received bids for Pax parking lot work, made recommendation to SHA for winner, awaiting notice to proceed
    • Trailwork on Seneca Greenway, researched safe routes to cross Clopper Road during the MoCo Epic
    • MD Liaisons call
    • Worked with trails committee on two funding requests, both were approved $1100 for large tree removal at Emmitsburg, and $1600 for bridge repairs at Rosaryville
    • Meeting with MoCo Parks on 5 year goals for trails
  • VA Advocacy Director – Tom Howe
    • Summer Picnic Setup and Tear Down
    • Dupont Trail Work (8/19) Planning
    • Monthly DC / VA Liaisons Meeting
    • Reviewed Plans for Next Proposed Project at Fountainhead Regional Park
    • Led a Saturday Casual Ride w/ Ernie at Wakefield Park (8/12)
    • Wakefield Trail Work Day (8/13) Planning, Prep and Execution
  • Membership Director – Rob Lowe
    • [*]
  • Ride Program Director – Kathy Mihm
    • MoCo Trails proposed tasks map prepare/edit
    • Attend Trail Liaision meeting
    • Recruit weekend ride leaders
    • Set up MORE rides - weekend, weekday and sMORE's
    • Edit Frederick Area Trail options map
    • Lead Beginner skills clinic at Summer Picnic
    • Lead beginner-friendly rides - Tuesdays (co-ed) and Thursdays (women's) 
  • Communications Director – Nate Frey
    • Analysis and summary of survey data
  • Treasurer – Neil Blake
    • [*]
  • Activities Director – Clay Deming
    • Plan, shop, and support Summer Picnic
    • Recruit designs for a new MORE sock for liaisons and volunteers
    • Communicate regarding Fall Camping


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