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Mike Van Abel's blog

Be a Link in the Chain

Should the bicycle and outdoor industries do more for IMBA? It’s a question that gets raised regularly, including at this year’s Interbike trade show gathering. As IMBA’s president and executive director, it’s easy for me to answer in the affirmative—more industry support would allow IMBA to expand its reach and get more people excited about great mountain bike experiences. But I’m also partially inclined to answer, “No thanks,” because industry partners already do so much for our organization.

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A Call to Action for National Public Lands Day

Note: Check out a cool video for an example of IMBA and its local affiliates' commitment to stewardship of public lands on National Public Lands Day.

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MORE Board meets to plan and organize

If you live and mountain bike in the Maryland, northern Virginia or D.C. area, you can be confident that your riding future is in good hands. I am sure of this after participating in the Mid-Atlantic Off Road Enthusiasts (MORE) board of director's planning retreat, held recently at the Hilton Resort in Sedona, AZ.

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Long Live Long Rides!

A version of the essay below, along with the "Can You do That?" sidebar, appears in the Fall 2013 edition of IMBA's Trail News print newsletter.

IMBA has been fortunate to work with some crackerjack advertising agencies over the years. One our most memorable campaigns was titled “Long live long rides.” Engineered by TDA Advertising, the spots featured lighthearted images, like a dog food bowl so overflowing that Fido could survive while his miscreant owner went for a weekend-long ride.

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Celebrating IMBA’s 25th Anniversary—and What’s to Come in the Next 25 Years

Photo: IMBA founders meeting in 1988.

Mountain biking is, for the most part, an activity that depends on access to public lands. Sure, there are a few privately owned bike parks and riding areas in existence. However, the vast majority of places we ride are managed by government officials working at the local, state and federal levels. As long as that’s the case, mountain bikers will need an organized approach to maintaining and increasing our access to trails.

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Time Will Tell

"Time will tell" is a saying usually accompanied by healthy skepticism. At this moment, time and history are on everyone's minds here at IMBA as we reflect upon the 25 years since IMBA's birth.

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Priorities emerge from the 2012 IMBA Chapter Congress

IMBA Chapters have spoken and they know what they want to do in order to improve the chapter program. To be more precise, 32 of the current 102 chapters who had representatives in attendance at the IMBA World Summit in Santa Fe told IMBA’s board and staff what is important to them. They revealed their priority ideas and interests for how to continue to add value to the program at the 2012 IMBA Chapter Congress.

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The IMBA Chapter Congress: The Making of our New Association

The second IMBA Chapter Congress will convene on October 12 at the IMBA World Summit in Santa Fe, New Mexico. This is an important gathering of IMBA staff, board members and chapter leaders as we determine our 2013/14 agenda for what and how we jointly improve and grow our programs and operations.

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