An Independent WMMBA: The Alliance Needs YOU!

tagged as Blog,Fundraising,Trails

WMMBA Trail Advocacy

We couldn’t think of a better time than the day we celebrate independence to talk about the importance of a local trail association working for local trails.¬†

For a long time, West Michigan Moutain Bike Alliance has operated in connection with a larger, umbrella entity. This chapter model has long been an adopted structure that works well for a number of associations in all sorts of industries. It’s simple; many entities banded together have an amplified voice and a further reach.

What has changed in the world of trails, however, is how localized regulation, legislation, and access have become. There are fewer and fewer federal or even state motions that have wide, sweeping implications that affect trail groups in different parts of the state. Especially here in West Michigan, where trails are owned or controlled by state, city, county, and private groups, the real value in belonging to a larger umbrella group is in promotion and education.

After a long process, WMMBA moved to become its own non-profit association this past spring. The long shift from chapter to Alliance was done for all positive reasons; we believe existing as our own organization will allow us to do more, and mean more, to our community.

First, working independently means more money stays right here in West Michigan. We reserve the right to support organizations and efforts at the state and federal level, but any funds that leave our region do so after a decision by our board, not as a cut from your membership dues!

We believe how and where we use all funds is extremely important, and the ability to assure our local riders and sustainers that their money will make a tangible difference in the places they ride every day really means a lot to us. That’s why we feel confident in taking on fundraising efforts like that of the GR Bike Park; we know that what you’ll see more than just a dollar amount; you’re going to see and enjoy a better trail experience.

We also believe that this allows us to stay true to our Allies. We will always be able to support and communicate the best interests of local trail users on issues like trail access, eBikes, and topics that may still be on the horizon. We won’t ever comprise the integrity of our trails, our values, or our community.

We retain a strong working relationship with all other Michigan trail advocacy chapters and will continue toward making our region a world-renowned mecca of mountain biking, and we understand the value of supporting trails that may be a bit beyond our backyard.

When you become an Ally, you put a shovel in a volunteer’s hand. You help us dig, cut, and communicate to hundreds of other trail users. When you become an Ally, you show that what we do, where we live, and how we ride matters for today and tomorrow.

Our registrations are run through IMBA, but rest assured, your money stays right here in West Michigan, where you’ll see your support at work.