March 2022 MORE Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

MORE – Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

March 14, 2022



Virtually present at meeting

Ernie Rodriguez - President

David Beugelmans - Vice President

Peggy Flaxman - Executive Director

Tom Howe - VA Advocacy Director

Kathy Mihm - Communications Director

Rob Lowe – Membership Director


Not present at meeting

Neil Blake – Treasurer

Dave Magill - MD Advocacy Director



·      Guests

o   Jon Posner

§  State of the league for NICA

·      At end of 2021, finished with 691 student athletes and 330 coaches

·      Represented 131% and 140% increase over first year of running

·      Number of teams went to 14 to 22, which is a smaller percentage increase. This shows that we need more teams forming in our league.

·      Six new teams launching this year. Two teams are coming from large composite teams splitting and going to push this as a theme moving ahead to leverage large composite teams as incubators for new teams to form off of them

·      Planning video drop on March 20, which is world storytelling day. Would love MORE’s help rebroadcasting and getting it out there.

§  Have discussed idea of pumping energy back into youth council initiative that ran up against covid.

§  Listening Tour

·      Want to bring MORE to the youth at their NICA practices. Really work hard on training couches so that kids feel comfortable and sharing with each other.

·      Think this is a great environment for gauging where they are on access and advocacy

·      Want to target larger teams with 30 or more kids at practice.

·      Invite MORE board members out to give talk on MORE and how it ties into the league

·      Most of participants are new to sport and the community. Getting MORE in front of them early is a good idea.

·      Next Steps

o   Need to refine process and nail down what it looks like. Need to get on Zoom for a dry run or walk through and then connecting with some teams.

o   Andy Bacon

§  Took over EX2 in last part of 2017

§  First race EX2 ever produce was Cranky Monkey

§  In 2014, Jim sold the Cranky Monkey license to MORE via SCORE. Idea was that it would be used as a fundraising mechanism for MORE

§  In 2015, there were a couple races, but for various reasons it fell off.

§  Then EX2 fell off for several years.

§  Started process of bringing races back. Started in 2019. Then COVID happened and plan went on hold, but did hold first race back in 2021 and had a good time.

§  On a ride a couple months ago, and was thinking where he wanted to take EX2. Mountain bike racing popped in head again.

§  Get asked on regular basis whenever he posts about bikes when are you going to bring Cranky Monkey.

§  Want to be transparent about intent and what EX2 would do with it before he does anything.

§  The other thing that’s happened is one of the silver linings of COVID is EX2 started having non-profit and charity partners for all events.

§  Non-profit organization is part of registration flow and ask to donate to MORE. EX2 then matches 10% of donations before donation to non-profit.

§  Over the last two years, the program has generated $107,000.

§  Races aren’t huge, but they aren’t small either.

§  Idea is for EX2 to host a Cranky Monkey again and MORE would be the non-profit charity partner.

§  Ask: Is this something that’s possible?

§  Ernie:

·      Spoke with Kevin as soon as I became aware of this.

·      Peggy is right that MORE did not renew the trademarks.

·      History:

o   In 2013, single track futures foundation was created. This was a non-profit with 4 goals in mind, one of which was to create youth programming. With that he donated funds to Tim O’Donnell to build Emmitsburg, he carved out an area for Quantico Mountain Bike Club, he made sure we considered the sMOREs program, and he also had direct funding of MORE for trails.

o   Out of that programming grew his desire to create SCORE.

o   Eventually transferred everything to SCORE

o   Eventually everything dropped off.

o   Ernie has told liaisons MORE owns the name and that they can use it for fundraising

§  General support from Board in concept, but decided to discuss offline before support.

·      Financial Updates

o   Shopify and PayPal Fees

§  Tabled until next month

o   Indemnification of Officers and Directors

§  Tabled until next month

·      Working with Partners and other nonprofits - discussion and general guidelines - Gravity Soul, TYO, Gearin' Up, NICA/MICL, request from other nonprofits (Alzheimer's, Diabetes, etc.)

o   Gravity Soul Proposal

§  Peggy

·      Need Dave M.’s input.

·      Gravity Soul is exploring how MORE can help with fundraising.

§  Dave

·      We should only do fundraising if the park is open to the public or MORE members

§  Rob

·      Have done semi-private partnerships before and it has not gone well. Most famous one was the freedom center in Leesburg VA

o   Wanted help building and maintaining stuff.

o   Eventually some trails got built, the trails up there were open for awhile, but it went away after a few years. Only maintained when used for SNOT cycle.

o   There is a fine line to walk about funding private spaces and generally the requirement is that it’s open to membership, in some shape or form. Maybe once a week.

o   Open to supporting event, but going beyond that to help any sort of funding of features, then it’s hard. The issue of access would be complicated.

o   Other Partners

§  Ernie

·      Received request from Alzheimer’s and Diabetes groups.

·      Want to understand if we should continue endorsing other groups.

·      We need to be careful with this.

·      NICA/MICL we should share, but what about the other ones.

·      Dave B: We shouldn’t promote groups and causes that have nothing to do with mountain biking and MORE.

·      Membership Updates (Rob)

o   February was a good month

o   Kept up with insane level of February 2021

o   With how bad the weather was, surprised surpassed last year. Up $600. Had a really good January.

o   Membership members are growing 1840s at end of February, now headed to 1855.

o   Should hit 2000 park this year, and could go higher.

·      Communications

o   Annual Report Content

§  Kathy: Begging for contributions. Only other pieces looking for is something from Neil and also from Tom and Dave regarding VA and MD summaries.

§  Ernie: We need to make sure to highlight projects because they drive donations.

§  Peggy:

·      Want to do an info graphic of the grants to put into social media and put out in Sunday update.

·      Also want to do a one-page piece for liaisons to have. How many parks, how many trails, etc.

·      Events

o   Spring/Summer Events

§  Clay

·      In general, has been trying to get ride leader programs out (monthly rewards). Have been successful gathering up donations. Going to start and do this monthly and give away 100 in gift cards every month.

·      In terms of events, going to do monthly events. Doing March 26 at Locust Shade.

·      For summer picnic, has looked around bit and has fallen back on Seneca Creek State Park. Worked well last year. And will explore Bacon Ridge next year.

o   Day for summer picnic if June 18

o   Kathy: Are we going to do the Winter Meeting a the summer picnic?

§  Rob/Tom – Spring fling is probably dead this year.

§  Ernie – We need to think about rewards because it’s important.

·      This year is a little bit different. It is time to think about the rewards. Instead of doing the same rewards, we need to recognize we have leadership all over the place.

·      Dave B: We need to recognize “unsung heroes”

o   Women’s ride leaders (Kathy)

§  Has been trying to recruit women’s rides leaders. Have about a dozen that would be attending clinic. This will be paid by MORE to try to get them to lead MORE women’s rides.

§  David B – What is the geographic diversity?

·      Pretty wide area from all over.

·      Clinics

o   Peggy

§  When we did survey at end of 2021, rides and beginner clinics were top asks. In addition to Kathy working hard to get women ride leaders to enhance program.

§  Had two people independently reach out. Tom Mathis will do Bicycle Bootcamp at Wakefield. We are cosponsoring. Separately, Chris McGibbin is offering to do clinics with the Bike Lane.

§  This is a significant increase in number of clinics from before.

o   Kathy

§  Reached out to Hillary M. to do clinics for MORE members. There are other efforts to get additional clinics available for MORE members.

·      Trails

o   Virginia (Tom)

§  Going to bring new liaisons into the fold.

§  Trails committee approved grant request for Locust Shade. Fully funded from the Tommy O’Sullivan fund.

§  Down at Forest Greens, there is a public golf course, they are putting in a permitter route. Walked with two people from county. Going to be amazing. Going to be right along disk golf course.

§  Also Prince William County is trying to figure out how to get access to heritage trail, so this could be a MoCo type trail setup with multiple connected trails.

§  Andrew Leech is another park in Prince William County, but running into community issues with one person. Focusing on our brand and name out there, cleaning up trails in the park.

§  Fountainhead has some trailwork coming up.

§  Brookfield, trying to figure out funding for grants. Trying to get access between pumptrack and CCT. There is a social trail and trying to make it permanent.

§  At Wakefield, submitted GTF project request. Will rehab downhill berms and other berms




Activity Reports

·      President – Ernest (Ernie) Rodriguez

o   Engagement with USA Cycling for date for Mountain Bike National at Frederick Watershed

o   Work with Laurel Hill trail liaison Mike Applegate to secure new mower - FCPA paid for the new mower after asking us to help fund

o   Coordination meeting with MICL on date for trail shared use and participation at MoCo Epic in October - will coordinate activities

o   Video meet-n-greet with new Executive Director for Fairfax County Park Authority  - looking forward to working with her

o   Meeting and discussion regarding Fountainhead Reverse Ride fundraiser - Jeffery Ravenhorst leading MORE's activities

o   Multiple meeting with Prince Willam County regarding new trails at Forest Greens golf course, MOU forthcoming in April, hiked the proposed trail corridor with Martin, Brock and Brandon (PWC)

o   Approved Locust Shade General Trails Fund request to address remaining trail issues at Locust Shade

o   Attend virtual Lake Accotink dredging project stakeholders meeting - no final path identified for dredging spoils yet

o   2022 registration for MD Charity Campaign submitted and accepted

o   Participate in 2022 Strategic Planning for MORE, 1, 5 and 10 year outlook

o   Virtual meeting with US Forest Service in support of George Washington and Jefferson Forest maintenance planning 

o   Apply for and withdrawal of Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance program - our request for facilitation for access to National Park Service managed land was not an option and MORE works well with all other land owners

o   Completed sending out 2021 donor tax letters

o   Virtual meeting with James Whalney from Senator Kaine's staff

o   Virtual meeting with staff from Gearin' Up to discuss collaborative activities and mutual support - Gearin' Up provides services beyond MORE's mission

o   Participation in National Action Network sponsored by REI to share, understand and support national mountain bike legislation

o   Finalize Ride Leader guide with Peggy, Clay and Kathy

o   Work with Kathy, Clay and Peggy on ride leader clinics and programming

o   Meeting with Kory Hopkins to outline work on MORE's hype video project

o   Attend VA/DC Liaison virtual meeting

o   Attend training sessions with American Trails for Universal Trail Assessment Process UTAP and High Efficiency Trail Assessment Process HETAP and Events and Festivals - UTAP or HETAP are required for Federal Trails

o   Attend annual planning meeting for Lee and North River with US Forest Service and stakeholders - project updates

o   Secured General Liability Insurance for MORE - 2022-2023 - new broker and underwriter, Players Health and State National Ins Co

o   Multiple one-on-one training sessions for Golden Volunteer

o   Input and analysis of Volunteer hours in Track-it-Forward - over 10,000 volunteer hours in 2021

o   Assist Neil with 2021 IRS 990 data submissions to accountant - should be complete in a couple of weeks including review

o   Begin interviewing (local legends) to help document MORE's history and Trail Champions


·      Executive Director – Peggy Flaxman

o   Completed update to content and format of 2022 MORE Liaison Guide 

§  Shared with liaisons

o   Worked with Clay on simple clinic and ride checklists with links

o   Email sMORE’s leader to kick of 2022

o   Attended Monthly Liaison Mtgs

o   Worked with Ernie on Insurance issues

o   Met with Gearin’ Up

o   Worked with MORE Video Team on upcoming video shoot planning

§  applied for several grants 

o   Created and sent weekly emails updates with “digest” of social media content

o   Met with Andy Bacon (EX2) re: Schaeffer Event

o   Assisted with event planning

o   Updated calendar

o   Attended invasive special seminars

o   Checked PO Box Weekly

§  Deposited Checks

§  Reported to Treasurer

o   Attended Hashawha Work Day

o   Strategic Planning Meeting & Followup

o   Met with Arlington Trail re: Social Media Assistance

o   Added to Instagram Account

o   Updated Sponsors, Supporters & Partners on website

o   Updated landing page with Kathy’s Interactive Map

o   Began Research on Donor Management Tools

o   Assisted VAULT with planning of Land Conservation, Trails & Greenways Conference

o   Reached out to USAC re:Mountain Bike Marathons Hats

o   MoCo Epic Planning

§  Updated 2022 Event Page

§  Began Permitting Process

§  Review & Discussion of Route Marking

§  Updates to Bike

o   Attended Partner Event at Schaeffer

o   Reached out to Athletic Brewing re: Sponsorship

o   Worked with Strang Family Orthodontics re: sMORE’s Sponsorship


·      Vice President – David Beugelmans

o   Conducted pro bono waiver review by Gordon Feinblatt LLC

o   Ad hoc Waterworks trailwork


·      MD Advocacy Director – Dave Magill

o   Tool order w Kem

o   Bridge designs w Dan Hudson

o   Safe passage under Clopper Road w Ted Diss



·      VA Advocacy Director – Tom Howe

·       Emailed Trails Committee for approval of Wakefield GTF Project Request

·       Held Monthly VA/DC Liaisons Meeting

·       Discussed with Dave and Ernie about increasing Tool Budget to cover Liaison Tool Request

·       Trails Committee approved the Locust Shade GTF Project Request

·       Emailed Trails Committee for approval of Locust Shade GTF Project Request

·       Participated in walk-through of planned permitter loop at Forest Greens w/ Martin, Geoff, PWC, and Ironwood Outdoors


·      Membership Director – Rob Lowe

o   Membership Processing

o   Thank You's - New, Renew, Annual Renewal Point for Monthlys

o   Drawing Member Lists to Peggy - New and Renew+ARP

o   Lead Rides at Wakefield


·      Communications Director – Kathy Mihm

o   prepared interactive trail map for MORE website

o   Started on 2021 Annual Report - got files from Andrew Metlito and accessed InDesign

o   Planning for Ride Leader coordination

o   Planning for Women's MTB Day on 5/7/2022

o   Organize and recruit women's ride leaders

o   Arrange/organize MORE clinics with MTB instructor, especially women's clinic for ride leaders

o   Printed and distributed Muddy Trail signs

o   Arrange for more trail head signage - request from Liaisons


·      Treasurer – Neil Blake

·      Activity update - We have a first draft of the 2021 financial statements and tax return. They should be finalized within a week or two.


§  General revenues - $6.5k

§  General expenses - $12.3k ($9.4k ED and $1k for trail education signs plus misc other items)

§  Restricted revenues - $16.2k ($12.2 reimbursement from SHA for Patuxent)

§  Restricted expenses - $0.5k



·      Activities Director – Clay Deming

o   help organize MORE jerseys with Jason and team

o   design/organize ride leader jerseys

o   gather sponsors for ride leader rewards.

o   help with group ride/clinic policy

o   start organizing spring/summer activities

o   initial internal survey on 30th event.

o   brainstorm with kathy/peggy on womens mtb day

o   research summer picnic locations- settle on scsp_6.18.22

o   update ride leader guide

o   reach out to IMBA re: diversity seminars/info

o   strategic meeting 

o   secure 2 entries to sheduro for ride leaders


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