Sunday, February 14, 2010

MMBA Annual Meeting & Expo, Part 2

In Part 1 on the MMBA Annual Meeting, I discussed the goings on at the Meeting and Exposition. I arrived about 9 am that morning and with the number of meetings and program events I was pretty tired by the time 4 pm rolled around. Preparing for public speaking and meetings seems to take a great deal out of me and I constantly felt like someone was tugging at my sleeve about advocacy questions, MMBA affairs, PrecisionMTB team events and all of the other things that go along with a busy day in the world.

By 4 pm I was happy to have some down time to write down some notes from the day's meetings and collect my thoughts. On my way out, I ran into someone I still had not had a chance to talk to. With just a mere dozen or so people milling about as the last stragglers to leave the MSU Pavilion, one of them happened to be Dave Wiens. It was a delightful surprise.

Looking back, I often remember the phrase from Gone With The Wind (it happens to be a paraphrase of a Ben Franklin quote): "Do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of." It reminds me that the greatest gift is the gift of time. So happening upon Wiens at the 11th hour of the MMBA Meeting was uplifting. Away from his home and family, he made me realize how much we all are capable of in our efforts to give back to this sport that has given us so much.

I was able to sneak in a few minutes to ask Dave Wiens about training and life in Colorado. He even took a minute to take a picture with me, as you can see from my MMBA Annual Meeting, Part 1 blog entry.

Dave Wiens made me realize that I can do more. And, it will be nice to see his familiar face when I approach the starting line at my first Leadville Trail 100.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

MMBA Annual Meeting & Expo, Part 1

On the left: yours truly; on the right: 6 time Leadville Trail 100 Winner Dave Wiens from Gunnison, Colorado

On Sunday, January 31, 2010, I attended the Michigan Mountain Biking Association (MMBA) Annual Meeting & Expo. It was a great chance to meet up with teammates, talk to guys at the KLM Bike and Fitness Booth ( and check out the things going on at the MMBA.

I am the Director of Advocacy so I actually had to behave myself and not act like a complete bike geek at all times (though there was one notable exception, discussed in Part 2). I had MMBA business to take care of. I gave a presentation on the MMBA's advocacy efforts over the past year, introduced my staff, and talked about new advocacy efforts for 2010.

I have been going to the MMBA Annual Meeting for years and this was the best one yet. It starts with a great venue: the MSU Pavilion was perfect. It had plenty of wide open space through the hallways, bathrooms, and expo area. So much room that one could ride their bike into the Pavilion and never get off; I mean it. I guess it is one of the bonuses of making everything ADA compliant-- ramps everywhere! One could ride into every area of the expo, everywhere!!!!

-----------Through the expo area? Yep.
-----------To the swap meet? Sure. Stop by the beatthetrain table ( and eat chips and salsa on 2 wheels!!
-----------To the auditorium? Why not!! Plenty of room in the pit area to listen to the MMBA annual meeting presentations, chapter presentations, Dave Wiens' presentation, etc.
-----------In the dirt arena where they set up a pump track? Duh, it's a pump track-- just make sure to sign the waiver and get your wristband for admittance.
-----------In the bathrooms? I didn't see anyone try it, but there was plenty of room-- just be careful with those handlebars.

It was a great day to be involved in mountain biking. As I prepared to leave the MSU Pavilion, I had a few minutes to think of all the people I had met, the good stories we shared, the accomplishments of the MMBA and the good feeling of a day spent in earnest contemplation of activities that made my soul feel better. It was a good day. The kind of day that reminds one of the great things that mankind is capable of.

-John Gonway

Monday, February 1, 2010

2010 Team Roster

I would like to introduce our 2010 Team roster.

Adam Wheeler
Andy Erickson
Andy Staub
Brandon Bailey
Brian Brown
Bryan Deal
Dave Smith
Jason Weida
Jeff Jager
Jim Senska
Joe Reddy
John Gonway
John Schram
Lee Shaw
Melissa Mabry
Nick Cisler
Paul Mann
Phil York
Ray Fulkerson
Roger Pelkey
Scott Simpson
Tom Sterling
Tom Payn

Good Luck Everyone!