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June BoD Meeting Minutes + May Activity Reports


Mid-Atlantic-Off Road Enthusiasts (MORE) Board Meeting

REI Tyson’s Corner

June 12, 2017



Board Members Present

  1. Ernie Rodriguez, President
  2. Rob Lowe, Vice-President
  3. Greg Dwyer, Operations Director
  4. Jeff Niner, VA Advocacy Director
  5. Tom Howe, Membership Director
  6. Carlos Alfaro, Activities Director
  7. Aaron Richter, Treasurer
  8. Dave Magill, MD Advocacy Director


MORE Staff, MORE Members, and Guests

  1. Steve Dontigny, MORE Executive Director
  2. Jonah Meyers, MORE Vice-Treasurer


Item #1:  2017 Budget/Financial Review (Aaron)

Aaron reviewed budget for 2017 Gala Event, MORE’s Statement of Activity (January 1st to June 1st), and status of CFC application for 2018– (MORE was recently notified by the CFC it does not have the proper paperwork for the 2018 application.  An outside audit costing approximately $10K would have been required for MORE to participate in the 2018 CFC campaign.  The Board took the decision to not pursue CFC in 2018 as the cost and effort of the audit would be approximately 50% of the revenue MORE would generate from participating in the CFC; the Board determined that it could re-coup the lost $10K in 2018 through other fundraising means. Given lower revenues an audit would not be required to participate in 2019 so MORE will now focus on a 2019 application


Item #2:  2016 Tax Returns and Financial Review (Aaron/Ernie)

2016 returns are complete. Ernie and Aaron will post page one of the IRS Form 990 to the MORE website.


Item #3:  Membership Updates (Ernie)

IMBA is using a new format for monthly updates regarding new memberships, renewals and re-engaged members.  Initial feedback from chapter member groups is very positive.  Current MORE membership level is at 1,450 members.  The tax exemption certificate is on the MORE web page:   Board made it clear that Board Members, Trail Liaisons, and other staff are using this letter to save MORE money on state sales tax in VA, DC, and MD.  Action:  All Board Members and senior MORE volunteer staff.


Item #4:  MD Trails Update (Dave Magill)

Brunswick:  The City of Brunswick approved a budget which included $15,000 for trail projects.  Carlo A. is MORE’s liaison.

Greenbrier & Frederick Watershed:  Dave Kalt resigned as co-liaison; he will continue to assist, but will not be the main liaison.  Joe Whitehair has agreed to step up as co-liaison, joining Phil Van Werkhoven.

Emmitsburg:  Community Heritage Day Festival on June 24th.  Various mountain bike and road rides (Road rides: 10 mile and 25 mile), family events, kids rides, etc. See contact:  Tim O’Donnell @:


MoCo Trails:     

County wants to implement a signage update.  Looking to get MoCo certified as an official IMBA Ride Center.  Action:  Need a volunteer to assist MORE and MoCo w/this.

Damascus:   Four miles of trails built around at a small park there.

NW Branch Trail: Three miles of trails being built to extend current four miles of trails.  Concluded a successful ride w/MoCo County Council member Hans Reimer.

Schaeffer and Muddy Branch:  Pepco is looking good to approve and permit the connector b/t these parks.

Rockburn:  Melanie Nystrom is working to enhance the bike park, applying soil-tac and a new 30’ TTF including a roller and drop.

Patapsco:  Cocktails for Trails was a successful event.  (Dave attended on behalf of the BoD and other MORE members attended).   MD DNR has received funding for a bridge in Patapsco:  connecting Daniels to Woodstock.

Lock Raven:  nothing to report

Bacon Ridge:  Mike Klasmeier is flagging phase III and getting ready to build!

Cosca:  Build is moving forward.  July 1st is Discovery Ride (an “Invitation to Cosca” on the new trails) followed by a trail workday.

Rosaryville: nothing major to report.  McNeely did some trail work days to mitigate the ongoing puddle issue.


Calvert County:  Seed money in the form of a $1K hand built trail grant will be set aside to begin building a short 1.3-mile trail on the Church property; this trail will be open to the public and the first MTB trail in the county.  Chris Garrett is leading this effort


Item #5:  MD 2017 RTP Grant Update (Dave)

New changes in place for 2017-18 RTP grant applications.  $10K-$15K is now the expected ongoing permitting cost for new trails, regardless of trail length.  That said, permitting costs will not be covered under new RTP grants.  Size of maximum grant is now up to $80,000 per project.    Volunteer labor rate has been cut from $25/hr to $16/hr (was changed to “unskilled” from “skilled”).  Grants are due July 1st, 2017.  Friends of Patapsco Park is likely not interested in pursuing a 2017 grant. Dave is talking to MORE liaisons who have existing RTP grants.  Austin Steo (liaison for Fairland) is out of the RTP grant business.  Because of these RTP Grant application changes, MORE liaisons are unlikely to apply for new RTP grants.  The permitting process is extremely slow (two to three years for permit granting) coupled with all upfront costs for permits make the new RTP process very onerous to MORE trail liaisons.


Item #6: VA Trail Update (Jeff)

I-495 Jumps Park:  Big Steel Tool Box has been purchased from Lowes and was delivered on June 2nd.

GW National Forest:  Laurie will take over as trail liaison.  Approximately three organized trail workdays each year.

BROT:  Jeff, Larry, Ernie, and Steve meeting w/NOVA Parks HQ this week to discuss new BROT trail plan.

Lake Fairfax:  Frank Raiti (Lake Fairfax Park liaison) meeting–Frank provided advice and counsel regarding how to support trails in NoVA with Fairfax Co. Park Authority Board.

Meadowood and Mount Vernon:  many trees down due to dry winter/west spring.

Wakefield:  trying to get an audience w/the land manager for a skills area in Wakefield.

Trails Summit in Loudoun:  Loudoun Co. has reached out to MORE for trail master planning support.   IMBA will be involved in a future telecom w/County folks—the idea is that IMBA would design the trail and MORE would build it.


Item #7:  MoCo Epic Update (Steve)

Email blast to all of last year’s participants has gone out.

Numbers thus far:  53 signed up thus far this year compared with 97 last year.  Met w/Whole Foods (WF) as vendor—putting together a plan w/menu options.  WF is very interested in providing the food:  marketing, promoting, etc.  Q:  Would WF support some MORE Happy Hour events?  A:  Possibly.  Q:  Could WF store purchase some bikes as a giveaway that would include a MoCo free entry?  A: Possibly.  Germantown Cycles dropped out as an aid station sponsor and REI stepped in right away.  FYI, Trek has purchased all the local Revolution bicycle stores.  Trek is on board to support Saturday activities w/women’s clinics and possibly a bike donation.  For Saturday, we’ve got Salsa, Cannondale, and Jamis on board for demo bikes; working to get Niner and Trek.  Q:  What about Shimano?  A:  We’re working it.  Q:  What about FOX and/or SRAM?  A:  Can look into it.  Marketing details will be finalized this week.  Q:  Can we get MOCO Epic hang tags to market the event? A:  Yes.  New Belgium (NB) is NOT sponsoring beer this year for the Epic.  NB has a new online process this year: one for beer, one for funding.  Q:  What about Sierra Nevada?  A:  get in touch w/Brad Philips.


Item # 8:  Summer Festival De-Brief (Carlos & Steve)

A great event was had by all!  Good planning to reserve both pavilions, even though only one was used.  A perfect setting and an excellent volunteer event.  Propose having the 2018 summer festival at the same exact location.  If we do this again at the location, we’ll have a much better idea of what we need (Food & beverages), how we are organized for the event (group rides in AM and PM, demo bikes, etc.), how we market MORE and interact w/land managers and elected city/county officials, the need to improve action on getting all riders to sign waivers, and dedicate key volunteers for specific tasks.  New Faces attended. Board agreed to hold the Summer Festival event at the same location next year. Action: Carlos will reserve the same space for next year and reserve an alcohol permit.


Item #9: Gala Event Update & Committee Update (Ernie & Carlos)

Need to lock-down the catering:  we do not have food yet. Board agreed that this is an issue that needs prompt attention.

Beer:  DC Brau is sponsoring the beer at the event. Eight cases.  A:  Will the caterer serve liquor or not? A:  need to determine.  Q:  Are we giving out swag? A: No as it is too expensive and this is a fund raiser, not a fund deplete.  All Board Members are responsible for providing two bottles of wine for the event for a “Wine Pull”.  Donations at the event will go to MORE’s general trail fund.


Item #10: Gravity Soul Sponsorship Request (Ernie)

Ernie: For the past two years we have supported Gravity Soul.  Vote:  Support Gravity Soul for an additional year.  Passed—all Board in favor.


*The next MORE Board meeting with be July 12th at REI in DC, 7PM-9PM. 


June 2017 Activity Reports


Ernest (Ernie) Rodriguez

  1. Several Gala planning activities, ticket sales are ongoing for July 29
  2. Several Summer Festival planning activities, event was great
  3. Speaking at Mappy Hour at Wundergarten in DC about MORE trails and rides
  4. Membership, renewal emails and reminders, 102 renewals, 15 new with Free Bike raffle from IMBA
  5. Worked with SCORE and NICA to facilitate transfer of non-profit
  6. Website and social media support activities
  7. Follow-up with CFC application questions – more at BoD’s meeting
  8. Financials with Aaron and accountant
  9. Loudoun County trails advocacy meetings
  10. Club Ride agreement and sponsorship, MORE gets 50% of tees for trails
  11. Interview with On-Tap magazine Michael Coleman, Trails, Rides, Access, Volunteers and FUN
  12. Ordered MORE 25th anniversary socks and t-shirts
  13. Working with Steve on MoCo planning
  14. Gravity Soul sponsorship request


Steve DonTigny:

  1. PHTA Board Meeting
  2. Sound Wall Trail work day
  3. Bike To Work Day Pit Stop Hosting at New District Brewing, co-locate with Bike Arlington
  4. AM Pit Stop with Bikenetic
  5. Lake Fairfax Park Corporate Work Day-marketing materials to Tony
  6. Northwest Branch Trail opening, shirts to Lynn G.
  7. Capital Trails Coalition meeting
  8. America Walks Webinar
  9. IMBA All Staff Calls
  10. MABRA NICA call
  11. 25thGala Planning
  12. Summer Festival
  13. Wakefield sMOREs ride
  14. MoCo Epic:
    1. Whole Foods Market meeting, Food and Marketing concepts
    2. Marketing Meeting, Flyer/Poster development and Follow up meeting
    3. Aid Station sponsor letters and confirmations
    4. Beer Sponsor applications, emails, follow up
    5. Saturday events planning, Bike Demos, Clinics, Rides
  15. BikeReg emails

Carlos Alfaro:

  1. Attended gala planning and discussion meetings
  2. Helped test ticket purchase for gala
  3. Planned summer festival items, asked for help
  4. Gathered a lot of stuff from the Germantown shed for the summer festival and delivered items back
  5. Trail work days at Mt Vernon, continued to keep trails open
  6. Met with membership director and VA director to get best practices from Frank Riati.


Dave Magill:

  1. Conference call with SHA re RTP projects and new rules for 2017
  2. Recruiting new co-liaison and project leader for Shed
  3. Schaeffer trail work day
  4. Attended cocktails for trails at Patapsco
  5. MoCo meeting on upgrading signage throughout the county
  6. helped organize ride with county council member Hans Riemer on NW Branch trail
  7. Began field survey and flagging for new trail in Calvert County with Chris Garrett
  8. Negotiating alignment of new trail on Pepco ROW including DNR section, as well as construction support by MoCo Parks, maintenance agreement with MORE


Jonah Meyers:

  1. Attended Mappy Hour to hype MORE to the D.C. outdoor enthusiast community
  2. MD RTP grants calls
  3. MD RTP grants presentation development for liaisons
  4. Distributed MORE hang tags to all seven Race Pace Bicycles locations


Aaron Richter:

  1. Attended Mappy Hour event
  2. Attended more summer picnic
  3. Worked I tax returns and financial review
  4. Updated current year books


Greg Dwyer:

  1. Took, cleared w/Board, and posted May BOD meeting minutes.
  2. Attended & represented MORE at “Mappy Hour”, May 30th.
  3. Secured donation for 25th Anniversary Gala Event
  4. Various event postings to FB page during the month, i.e. Emmitsburg Trail Work Day, Mappy Hour, etc.


Jonathon Kidwell:

Nothing reported for May


Tom Howe:

  1. Worked with Ernie to send out email blasts to our contacts
  2. Worked with Ernie to send out June membership renewal and lapsed membership reminder emails
  3. Reviewed with Ernie the most recent membership drive/support/results
  4. MORE Summer Festival event day setup and participated in the Ride with Board Ride
  5. Planning next Wakefield Trail Work day for Saturday, 6/24 to build the upper berm for the Power Station Descent
  6. Providing trail maintenance supported as needed to PVC to prep for W@W

Rob Lowe (out for majority of May):

  1. Lead 1 Ride at Wakefield
  2. Summer Festival Planning, Support, Teardown

Jeff Niner:

  1. Order, pick up and Deliver 495 Jumps tool box – 4 hours
  2. Mt Vernon Park Meeting on Way Ahead – 2 hours
  3. VA Trail Liaisons Email – .5 hours
  4. Handed out MORE stickers/hang tags at DirtFest, PA


Brad Hawk (out for most of May):

Updated several events to the Facebook pages and provided web/FB support via email


Martin Fernandez:

  1. Website maintenance – almost daily
    2. Tracked down and acquired LOTS of documentation from MORE’s early years for the 25th Gala Event. Organizing the materials and have an archive of documents related to the Frederick Watershed, Fountainhead Regional Park, and the effort to open trails in Montgomery County
    3. Have been publishing #TBT articles on the MORE website
    4. Secured moreMTB as a twitter handle – used to be Scott Scudamore’s handle
    5. Working behind the scenes on a comprehensive “where to ride spreadsheet” – will incorporate it with the work Kathy Mihn has done. Need to recruit other MORE members/volunteers to help building the actual “venue” pages; Although a lot of work has been done there is much left to do
    6. Purchased an annual club membership with Ride With GPS – have begun inviting and sending messages to liaisons, however, very little feedback or response. Only Ken Lohr and Eric Crawford from Patapsco have responded.
    7.  Misc. Other items, including Social media updates, communications with members, Track it forward, messaging with land manager at Meadowood and misc. communications with Prince William Forest Park, including re-submitting the proposal we sent them last year.

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