It is with a heavy heart that CRAMBA has decided to cancel the 2020 Addison Oaks Fall Classic mountain bike race, originally scheduled to be held on September 12th at Addison Oaks County Park in Leonard, MI.
For over 11 years dozens of volunteers have spent hundreds of hours each year putting on the Fall Classic as a fundraiser to help CRAMBA pay for everything we do; from trail tools to winter grooming equipment, from insurance to pizza for volunteers at trail days, from signage to bridges. On a good year the event has raised over $8000, but on light attendance years — such as 2019 — this has been less than $2000.
With COVID-19 and Stay Home, Stay Safe affecting spring and summer racing seasons, many promoters have moved their races to autumn. From mountain to gravel to cyclocross races, every autumn weekend in 2020 has multiple races to choose from; far more than in typical years. While the choice of races is great, there are only so many racers and this results in a smaller turnout per race than if they were spread out throughout the year. Fewer participants means less income, which is the primary reason why CRAMBA puts on the Fall Classic.
More than just a fundraising race, the Addison Oaks Fall Classic is also a social event. It’s a time to race against friends, cheer others on, then share stories about the summer while sipping your favorite fizzy beverage. Unfortunately, right now it’s unclear how long we’ll be having to keep distance from each other, with the distinct possibility that large gatherings will still be prohibited come September.
Springtime is when race planning seriously begins; signing contracts for timing and the race venue, setting up registration, soliciting sponsors, arranging food, ordering medals and number plates, and much more. By cancelling the race now we can save our volunteer’s time and avoid costs that come from having to back out of agreements and leave dated material unused.
Today, at the end of April 2020, CRAMBA has around $48,000 in the bank. Our yearly expenses — without special purchases — are around $8000 and most of this has already been paid for 2020. Without the Fall Classic income CRAMBA will have no problems continuing as normal. Our work of building, maintaining, and advocating for trails will continue, and we have plenty of money available to spend on special projects.
All of this added up — the likelihood of minimal income, the costs of cancelling at a later date, and the lack of immediate need for fundraising — has led us to cancel the 2020 Addison Oaks Fall Classic.
We will continue planning our other events, including Massive Fallout and Trail Days, and will let you know as they are scheduled.
Thank you for being safe on the trails; here’s to getting back to riding and working!
See you out there (but from a safe distance),
Your CRAMBA Board of Directors:
Roger Class · Michael Green · John D Knight III · Ken Markiewicz · Brian McPherson
Mike Reeves · Becky Padin · Marc Padin · Wade Robbins · Steve Vigneau