Dear NEMBA members and friends 3/24/14

President Chris RileyWith spring riding around the corner and a great season of winter riding waning, I wanted to take a moment to reach out to all of you and introduce myself in my new role. As I imagine many of you have already heard I have been elected as the new President of CeMeNEMBA. I’m excited to serve in this new role and am honored to work with all of you and on behalf of riders in our community. My hope is to give mountain bikers a strong, unified voice that has a seat at the many tables in the region regarding trails, trail use, and trail development. We have had the good fortune of an incredibly strong start over the past many years, and without the amazing work of my predecessor and the legions of volunteers he’s brought to the table we would not have places like The Res, Bond Brook, and Pine Ridge to keep our riding appetites sated. I can’t imagine what it was like to start building these networks so many years ago. My hat goes off to anyone that’s put a shovel to dirt, clipped a corridor, shaped a berm, built a bridge or rock armored a mud hole. Over the past few years I’ve worked alongside many of you on different trail projects and continue to be blown away at what a small group of people can do in a short span of time. My hope is that we are just getting started!

A core group of CeMeNEMBA members have worked hard over the last couple of years to bring new trails to our networks and provide riding opportunities to an even broader group of athletes and recreationalists. Dirt Divas have ushered in a new crop of women riders to our region, some of which have clearly stated that without the brainchild and enthusiasm of Ruth Lessard and Carol Johnson they might never have been enticed to give this sport a try. Brian in his welcoming way has increased our weekly WNR to unprecedented numbers. This no-drop ride has become a staple of our region and is a social highlight of my week in the warmer months. We saw as many as 40 on a ride at The Res last summer!! With recent additions of trails like Wannabe, The junkyard, 6 back, Insulator, and the newest addition of The A Trail at Kennebec Highlands we are seeing our trail systems grow and it’s now feasible to create longer rides that challenge all abilities. We truly have an amazing foundation from which to go forward.

As the new president I have a few pet projects that I’d like to bring to the table and create open discussion and brainstorming about. I would like to invite all member and non-members to an open discussion about the future of CeMeNEMBA, riding in the central district and where you would like to see things go. I have a lot of ideas of my own, but before I set any agenda I feel that my job is to represent all of you, your needs and concerns. This meeting is a place to bring your positive energy, your creative thinking cap, and your ideas for building an even larger playground for us all in the region. We will discuss the existing projects for the spring and summer building months, our schedule of events, and ideas of how to increase our membership numbers and local involvement. In trail-side conversations with a number of you I’ve heard a ton of ideas and heard energy around ways to increase riding potential in the region. Please bring it all to the table!! This gathering is open to all members and non-members.

I hope to see you on Wednesday evening the 16th of April at The Weathervane in Waterville. Come early to socialize and catch up with friends; we will get started with our discussion at 6:30 and hope to wrap up by 7:30-8.

Many thanks.

Chris Riley
CeMeNEMBA President
Chrisriley73@gmail.com
207-232-7174

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