Jay Wilkes opened the meeting thanking Kevin Poske and OutSpokin’ Bicycles for providing pizza dinner for the meeting. This was our first meeting in 2010 at the trails.
The trail counters indicate that the message about trail closures seem to be getting out. The number of poachers when the trails are closed is very small.
Jay reported about the SORBA Board of Directors meeting held at the Nantahala Outdoor Center in March. A lot of the meeting focused on the 2010 IMBA World Summit which will be held in Augusta, GA on May 5-8. This is a great opportunity to showcase SORBA and the FATS trails that were built by the CSRA chapter. Ellis Alexander from SORBA Woodstock will be co-presenting in one of the breakout sessions at the summit to share the fundraising success at SORBA Woodstock. There will also be an expo at the summit and SORBA Woodstock will have a booth manned.
The parking lot at Blankets will be closed on Tuesday 4/13. Trails will be opened but the county will be repairing the entrance that is starting to look like a pump track.
The trail marking system will soon be installed. Markers have been put out to bid by the county.
The Dragon’s Tail re-reroute is open. It needs some finishing hand work but it is a great improvement on that section of the trail.
Mark Heiman and the SOFA riders have designed a great beginner downhill run for the old fire road. Work will begin soon on that section. The route for the expert South Loop extension is being finalized and work parties will be announced soon.
Charlie Shultz and Steven Mullins have finished 1.3 miles of the new Taylor Randahl Memorial Trail. Work parties will be held on 4/17 and 4/24. The Boy Scouts are building a replica of the kiosk at Blankets Creek to honor Taylor Randahl who helped Thomas Turner build the Blankets Creek kiosk for his Eagle Scout project.
REI will be supporting a 200 person volunteer day at Rope Mill on National Trails Day, 6/5/10. Show up early and get a REI volunteer t-shirt!
Dogs off leashes continue to create a safety hazard at Blankets Creek. We continue to receive reports of incidents/collisions. The park rule is that dogs must be on a leash.
Cherokee County Commissioner Karen Bosch arrived at the end of the meeting and made the official announcement that the acquisition of 5+ acres between the parking lot and the church has been finalized. This is a huge event for Blankets Creek. A concept plan has already been created that expands the parking by more than double the current capacity, adds permanent bathrooms and changing rooms and a pavilion. A new entrance will also be created that will line up with the turn lane travelling west on Sixes Road. Ms. Bosch shared how much enthusiasm Cherokee County has about Blankets Creek and the relationship between SORBA Woodstock and the county. They are determined to help us make this one of the finest mountain biking parks in the country. Ms. Bosch has worked hard on our behalf within the County Commission to draw attention and direct resources to improving what is the busiest park in the county.
The meeting was adjourned.