Over 150 land managers and mountain biking advocates gathered in Woodstock, GA for two days of education and networking at the 2nd Southern Mountain Bike Summit, hosted by the SORBA Woodstock chapter and the City of Woodstock. The Summit was housed at Woodstock's Elm Street Cultural Arts Village in downtown Woodstock. On Friday, March 22nd, the Summit focused on our land managers. Presentations were given by federal, state, and local agencies, including the US Army Corps of Engineers, The National Parks Service, Georgia and South Carolina State Parks, Forsyth County, GA, and the City of Tallahassee, FL. All of the agencies involved highlighted the success they have shared by partnering with their local SORBA chapters. The day concluded with a site visit and group rides at Olde Rope Mill Park, home of the Taylor Randahl Mountain Bike Trail System.
Saturday, March 23rd kicked off with an IMBA-SORBA Board of Directors meeting where we welcomed and inducted our latest chapter, the South Alabama Mountain Bike Association (SAMBA) of Mobile, AL. The Board also discussed the dissolution of SORBA's 501 (c) (3) status, and the continued integration with IMBA. After the Board Meeting, the day was given over to sessions targeted at our advocates. Mack Story of CAMP kicked off the day speaking on effective leadershp. Concurrent sessions ran after lunch, offering attendess topics ranging from diversity to fund raising to liability. Dan Thornton was awarded the SORBIE, SORBA's highest honor for outstanding volunteers, for all the work he has done for SORBA since it's beginning. Rain canceled the afternoon rides and demos from Trek, Niner Bikes, and SCOTT at Blankets Creek, but the crowd headed over to the City of Woodstock's TrailFest, where they enjoyed food, beer, and live music. TrailFest is an annual fundraiser for The Greenprints Alliance, and this year they held the event concurrent with the Southern Mountain Bike Summit.
The weather also caused us to cancel the group rides in the Chattahoochee National Forest based at Mulberry Gap Mountain Bike Get-A-Way, but the attendees readily agreed the Summit was a great success, and they look forward to our Board meeting on Saturday, November 16th in Jacksonville, FL.