July 2018 CRAMBA Board Meeting

The July 2018 CRAMBA Board meeting was held at River Bends and began with a 10 mile ride on the singletrack trails.  Present at the Meeting were Steve Vigneau, Mike Reeves, Kristen Barry, Brian McPherson, and Diana Skinner. The meeting was called to order by Steve Vigneau at 8:15 PM.  Steve updated the progress at Stony Creek.  Stating that Applied Trail Research will be in town from 8/22 thru 8/31 and we may be able to meet with the company for input.  DTE has had a change in upper management and it appears they MAY not be donating money to the project, however, ITC could be interested in funding the signage for the project.  On 10/27/18 Stony Creek is hosting “Howlin at the Moon” event a the park.  It is an event focused on getting multiple user groups (Runners, Hikers and Mountain Bikers) together to enjoy the trails.  In other news, please contact the board if you are available to help in anyway with Massive Fallout, food, registration, signage, etc.  The meeting came to a close at 8:42 PM.

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July 2018 CRAMBA Chapter Meeting

CRAMBA Chapter Meeting Minutes 7/17/18

The meeting was held at Rochester Mills Beer Co. and was called to order at 7:02 by Steve Vigneau.

30 members were in attendance.

Previous meeting minutes were not read.

-Applied Trail Design has been selected for assessment and design of trail work at Stony Creek.  Scheduled to be built in 2019.

-Planning stage is funded, the build phase will be approximately $250,000.

-Still waiting on an exact date and time, but look forward to a Bike/Hike/Run event in October around Halloween.

-Trail should be prime as it was recently trimmed.


-Chris Westerlund sated that registration is open on BikeReg.  We are looking for sponsors and volunteers for food, marking course, etc.  If interested please email race@CRAMBA.org.


-There is 1.1 miles of new trail at River Bends, please help ride it in.  The direction is counter clockwise.  An additional 2 miles of trail will be built out in the fall when the leaves fall and site lines are better.  A lot of money has been spent on bridges and machine rental, thanks to a generous donation.

-The new bike park plans are held up at the Township level and a lot of good work has been put in by Jim Vanker and Ben Snyder to present the plans.


-New section of Addison trail is on hold due to a reported siting of a missisauga rattle snake.  More to come on the new trail and no other news to report.


-There has been good feedback on new bridge and trail work with some tweaking planned to dial things in.

-Recognition to all responsible being sought with the City of Sterling Heights so that people know who is responsible for the building and maintenance of the trail system.

-The large stone within the CRPT trail has been approved to be used as a new feature on the trail.  Look forward to that in the future.


-Membership is up to 70 members now.

-IMBA has dropped the program and the National Ski Patrol has picked it up.  There will be no noticeable difference to any trail riders.

-An application has been submitted to become a “patrol” level organization with National Ski Patrol.  Our bike patrol will now be dual trained for bike and ski patrol.


-The date is October 6 and we are looking for help with food etc.  Please contact Brian McPherson if you are interested in helping.

-Bloomer may not be included due to conflict with a running event.


-We will be looking for more/new chapter board members at the next meeting.  If interested please let someone know.


-No report


-Trimming to come soon and looking for help with TC work.


-Trail day this Sunday 7/22/18 at 9 am.  The trailer will be there and they may be doing a reroute.


-Trail day this Saturday 7/21/18 at 9 am with a BBQ after!


-2 miles of trail have been opened up from over growth and they are working with the park to build more trail in the future.


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March CRAMBA Board Meeting

Meeting was held at Steampunk.  In attendance were Steve Vigneau, Kristen Berry, Brian McPherson and Mike Reeves.

Meeting was called to order at 7:08 PM by Steve Vigneau.

-Trail Days are currently being established.  Look for them to be added to the calendar in the very near future.

-Steve V. is kind of taking the lead on figuring out the Golden Volunteer program to see how we can best utilize it.  Look for more on this later.

-We are looking into the possibility of using Trail Forks for trail conditions, etc.  Other chapters are successfully using this.

-Stony Creek Metro Park trail improvements continues to move forward!

-Bike park project at River Bends also continues to gain momentum, now with Shelby Twp. on board.

Meeting was adjourned at 7:53 PM

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National Mountain Bike Patrol new patroller orientation


Our next scheduled New Patroller Orientation is scheduled for May 6th 2pm at Shelby Twp Fire Station #1. Located at 6345 23 Mile Rd, Shelby Twp, MI 48316

Continue reading

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February CRAMBA Board Meeting

Meeting was held at Steampunk.  In attendance were Steve Vigneau, Kristen Berry, Eric Mile, Brian McPherson and Mike Reeves.

Meeting was called to order at 7:05 PM by Steve Vigneau.

-Discussion was had about signing IMBA Local Program document.   Waiting for final draft with corrections and it will be signed.

-Kristen mentioned that we have to renew our chapter insurance policy.  This will be done soon.

-AY CRAMBA It’s cold out! was a success.  Discussion was had about minor improvements for next year.

-Stony Creek Metro Park is considering a fund raiser for the new trail improvements at the park.  It would possibly be an evening ride in the fall.  More to come!

Meeting was adjourned at 8:15 PM

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January 2018 Chapter Meeting Minutes

CRAMBA Chapter Meeting Minutes 1/16/18

The meeting was held at Rochester Mills Beer Co. and was called to order at 7:05 by Steve Vigneau.

27 members were in attendance.

Previous meeting minutes were not read.

-Bids are out for design to several companies.
-Construction is expected to begin in 2019
-The Metro Parks are writing grants to fund the project
-The Metro Parks see the restructuring of the trails as necessary, to the future of the park
-CRAMBA is giving $3,000 to the Metro Parks for development with more to come in the future.
-The redesigned trail will begin and end at a parking lot and one of the goals is to allow fatbikes in the winter, and not interfere with the XC skiers.

IMBA Local
-Complete revision of IMBA by using local organizations such as MMBA.
-The old system was IMBA took 50% of the annual donations. Now they will be taking $12 per donation, no matter how much the donation is. This could be as much as an extra $7,000 for CRAMBA.
-You should notice no difference in the annual donation process

REI Grant
-$5000 was donated by REI and split between PLRA and Holdridge
-We are also hoping for a 2018 grant as well.

-Should have the events schedule finalized around late January early February
-Chris also reported that CRAMBA reached its 2017 goal of expanding membership from 400-500 members.

-5 or 6 grooms so far this year
-Will not be grooming unless we receive over 4″ of snow
-New trailer for the snowmobile is working great. Old trailer will be sold for a nominal fee.
-The park director wants to develop another area of the park. Plans are being made to possibly develop a bike park in this location within River Bends. Another meeting is planned for February. More to come.
-Going to continue working on additional trail
-Ay CRAMBA Its Cold Out is February 3rd and the backup date is 2/18/18. Pot luck, beer and wine allowed, bonfire, and multiple bike shops will be setup.
-The weekly group rides on Tuesdays are still going throughout the winter.

-Grooming has been going on
-Still waiting for clearance on additional 1 mile of trail to eliminate the asphalt section.

-Approval has been received to work on problem sections this summer, trail dates to be announced later
-Possible addition of 3 or 4 curved bridges
-Will be losing the funding received from the annual 5k Run.

-42 members logged 2,224 hours and 13,000 miles
-Looking for new patrollers around April or May.


Nest Chapter meeting will be April 17 at Rochester Mills Beer Co.

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CRAMBA in 2017: Year in Review

Thanks to all of you — CRAMBA’s members, volunteers, and donors — 2017 was another great year of Mountain Biking and Advocacy here in Southeast Michigan.

Our next in-person Chapter Meeting will be next Tuesday, January 16th, at Rochester Mills Brewery. The meeting begins at 7pm, and please arrive a bit before the start to allow time for ordering food and tasty beverages!

Here’s an update on the more notable successes in 2017:

Stony Creek Redevelopment Update: Volunteers continue to work with the Metroparks on the redevelopment of the mountain bike accessible trails at Stony Creek Metropark. We are currently planning for a professional design in 2018 and construction in 2019, funded by donations and grants. To help kickstart the design phase, CRAMBA has pledged $3,000 towards this first part of the project and will continue financial, planning, and technical support through project completion.

Trail Improvements: During trail work days CRAMBA volunteers made numerous improvements to our local trails, including a new rock bridge and Wrong Way signs at Stony Creek, building rollers and skinnies to fix wet areas at River Bends, rebuilding berms at the Clinton River Park Trails, and restarting trail development at Columbus Park.

IMBA Local Update: Early in 2018, CRAMBA, a chapter of IMBA, will move to IMBA’s new Local Program. This is the next generation of the Chapter program and the most visible change will be a switch to a low fixed cost per member per year. At current member counts and contribution levels we estimate this change will bring around $8,000 of your membership dollars, per year, back to CRAMBA.

MMBA Update: CRAMBA continues to be a member of the MMBA, our state-wide mountain biking advocacy organization, and will continue financial support in 2018.

REI Grant: Funded by a $5,000 grant from REI, CRAMBA volunteers installed new kiosks and bike repair stands at the Pontiac Lake and Holdridge Trailheads!

River Bends Grooming & New Trailer: Thanks to a generous donation CRAMBA has a new drive-on-drive-off trailer for storing and transporting the River Bends Snow Bike Route (RB-SBR) grooming equipment! Jeremy Verbeke and Mark Senyk have been hard at work keeping the snow on the RB-SBR groomed and riding great.

Chainsaw Training: This past Spring CRAMBA hosted a Forest Safety Instruction class for Southeast Michigan chapters at River Bends Park. Attendees received S.A.W.W. Level One instruction covering proper safety techniques, Personal Protective Equipment, and safe operation of chainsaws for trimming, felling, and clearing trees.

Membership: CRAMBA currently has around 500 paying members, with an average membership level of $46.95. To support ongoing projects such as Stony Creek we are looking to increase this number in 2018.

Successful Events: In 2017 we continued to host a number of successful events, from our fundraising Addison Oaks Fall Classic race to Massive Fallout, the GoT MTB clinics, ¡Ay CRAMBA It’s Cold Out!, and Take A Kid Mountain Biking Day. These events will continue in 2018; check out the CRAMBA Calendar or each event’s page for info as they are scheduled.

Weekly Group Rides: The regular CRAMBA-supported Tuesday Night (River Bends) and Wednesday Night (Stony Creek) rides keep rolling! If you haven’t attended one of these rides, come on out and meet some of your fellow CRAMBA members. While the Wednesday night ride at Stony Creek is on hold for winter, the Tuesday Night Ride at River Bends is going strong on the RB-SBR. Check out the CRAMBA Calendar for more info.

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CRAMBA and Stony Creek Update

CRAMBA has been working closely with the Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority in support of the Master Plan goal of trail redevelopment at Stony Creek. We have been meeting regularly and the project is moving along wonderfully, with current plans for trail design to occur in 2018 and construction in 2019.

Along with other user groups, we have sent the following letter to Metroparks Director Michael Reese as additional documentation of our support. This letter outlines our support and CRAMBA’s four primary goals during this redevelopment:

  1. Establishing a cohesive single track loop
  2. Allowing winter-time fat bike access
  3. Increasing single track trail mileage
  4. Modernizing trail design

Click on the image or here to read the full letter of support. Stay tuned, as there’s going to be a lot more to come!

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November 2017 Board Meeting Minutes

CRAMBA Board minutes.


Board members in attendance: Steve Vigneau, Erick Mile, Brian McPherson, and Mike Reeves.

Meeting was chaired by Steve and was called to order at 7:00 pm at Steampunk in Utica.

-Board approved Chris Westerlund to receive a CRAMBA Jersey and Pint glass to giveaway during a membership drive.

-Board approved $3,000 towards the planning phase of the Sheldon trails at Stony Creek Metro Park.

-Board approved putting old trailer, previously used for the snowmobile, on Craig’s List for $100.

-Board approved to support a new structural proposal by MMBA. CRAMBA will remain a club member at this time.

-The board also discussed the Addison XC race, with nothing new to report at this time.

Meeting adjourned at 9:00 PM

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2018 CRAMBA Board Election Results

On October 19th we had our quarterly Chapter Member Meeting up at Addison Oaks. The weather was amazing and we had approximately 20 people in attendance at the meeting. As usual for our October meeting we held board elections, with some board members remaining on the board, new folks volunteering to the board, and others stepping down.

In result, the CRAMBA chapter board is now comprised of the following five individuals:

Kristen Barry, Brian McPherson, Erick Mile, Mike Reeves, and Steve Vigneau

Specific positions have not yet been determined; this will be worked out at our first board meeting. As we get this worked out we’ll be adjusting the access to different portions of Basecamp and email addresses.

I would like to extend a very heartfelt thank you to those of you who have volunteered your time and resources to be on the CRAMBA board. From membership growth to financial organization, from race planning to ensuring that our trail coordinators have the resources they need, we’ve gotten some great work done. While our members may not see the item-by-item grind that we do to keep the wheels on and move mountain biking forward here in SE Michigan, they are loving the results and we all are better for it. And we’ve got more to come.

Mike Fitzpatrick: You’ve brought an amazing number of people into CRAMBA, both via the Guinness Bikers and your outstanding membership efforts. You’ve also donated some incredible materials and equipment (such as the two fat bike trail groomers) to CRAMBA which have allowed us to step up our trail game enormously, and the use of your pub as a regular meeting space was excellent. Not to mention the incredibly tasty, perfectly poured pints of Guinness! Thank you, Mike. We are incredibly fortunate to have had you as part of our team.

Jeremy Verbeke: Since joining CRAMBA, as River Bends Trail Coordinator and grooming our first fat bike trail, with your outstanding work expanding the CRAMBA Bike Patrol into the nation’s second largest Mountain Bike Patrol group, and countless more things beyond that, you’ve done amazing things. It’s been a pleasure working with you, and I look forward to our continued work together.

Marty Shue: Marty, you’ve been around CRAMBA and Metro North since I started mountain biking; a reliable, steady stalwart. From putting together the GotMTB clinics and getting more women interested in mountain biking to running Addison Oaks races, from chairing CRAMBA through our transition to an IMBA chapter… It feels like you’ve done it all because you have. I cannot thank you enough, and all of mountain biking in Michigan owes you a debt of gratitude.

Tony McGee: A tremendous thank you, Tony. After joining the CRAMBA board you took on wrangling our relationship with the MMBA and many, many tasks that brought everything together. It was wonderful working with you and I look forward to seeing you on the trails.

Alice Jacobs: Thank you for your regular input and for bringing a fresh perspective to the CRAMBA board. Your experiences volunteering with cons and other organizations have allowed us to think about how we work in a completely different way.

Nick Shue: Since I started mountain biking, you’ve been one of those guys who are always there. Whether it’s mentoring others on trail layout, sharing lessons learned from past work, putting together group rides, or linking up interested parties to make things happen with all the right people involved… You’ve done it. Hand in hand with Marty the two of you have been there, leading the Metro North Chapter and CRAMBA into the future and solid organization we now find ourselves in. Thank you, and I really look forward to continuing to work with you.

Chris Westerlund: From carrying the torch with Massive Fallout to constantly following up on membership you’ve been a reliable, helpful part of CRAMBA all while balancing things with work and school. It’s been great working with you, Chris and I really look forward to all the great advocacy stuff that we’ll be able to keep doing.

To Kristen (who is remaining on the board), Erick, Mike, and Brian, thank you for stepping up to help guide and run CRAMBA. From Holly Rec Area grooming to the Stony Creek project we’ve got a ton of great stuff going on, there’s loads of great opportunities ahead of us, and a solid foundation on which to grow. We’re going to do great things! I look forward to all of us working together and can’t wait to see where we go.

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