I am writing to share my personal observations about the importance of a sport-specific state and regional associations like, for examples, the California Association of 4Wheel Drive Clubs (CA4WDC) in CA, or District 36 or 37 of the American Motorcyclist Association, or the Northeast 4WD Association, or the Colorado Association of 4WD Clubs, or the Arizona State Association of 4 Wheel Drive Clubs, or whatever state and regional association might be available to you.
Since my first published article about landuse and public lands in 1982 (yea, 30 years ago since I got in the fight), I have always preached the critical need of clubs and individuals belonging to “everything they can afford and that makes sense to them.” Nothing has changed. The strength of our landuse fights lies in our clubs and organizations, supported by folks like you.
Now more than ever is the time to be in the game at the national, regional, AND state level.
Obviously I believe firmly in our national umbrella group for all sports, all trails – the BlueRibbon Coalition. But I also feel just as strongly about clubs being members of state (and regional) associations for their sport. It goes hand in hand with our successes in keeping the sport alive. For specifics, every four-wheeler in CA should belong to CA4WDC. I am not confused about that. If you want to add other groups to your lists of memberships (that you can afford and that make sense to you), then for sure I encourage that as well. It is all about memberships.
The bottom line of our successes in saving trails and keeping backcountry motorsports alive STARTS with you JOINING everything that makes sense to YOU.
I will add that my entire training course (the Recreational Leadership Training Course - RLTC at http://www.rltc.biz) is based in the fact that volunteer organizations, from churches to charities to clubs, always have “issues” and maybe even some “drama.” It just seems to be human nature. Many times the issues are driven by personalities, misunderstandings, lack of communication, or just plain ugliness of some sort.
No matter; the strength of volunteer associations/clubs lies in its members working together to a brighter future to serve the cause. It’s all about all of us being on the team, and getting past issues. It should never be about undermining the efforts of a good cause, but rather about shoring up the groups fighting for us. It’s about fixing things that are broken so we can all have a better off-road future.
I hope you will join me and be in the game, by being a solid member of BRC and your state and regional association. If you join other groups as well, I applaud you even more.
Thanks for listening,
Del Albright, concerned recreation advocate