Kona: They came, they rode, and they stayed for dinner.  The first annual Kona MTB Adventure Ride was well attended and by all accounts pretty much pegged the fun meter. The day saw around sixty mountain bikers participate in the riding events and seventy attend the CRNEMBA end-of-season party for burgers, beers and bon fire. Riders came from near and far –some as far as a two hour drive! Participants could ride designated beginner and intermediate loops planned and marked by CRNEMBA board member and Trail Boss Josh Tauses. Volunteer guides Pete Smith and Mark Schwartz were available to lead beginner and intermediate participants on rides that introduced them to the Valley and our trail system. Mike Pelletier guided a three-plus hour Epic Flow Ride that sampled some of the best purpose-built mountain biking trails anywhere. Board member Julie Coleman led an Epic Backcountry Ride that took participants into the Bigelow range and put on some mileage over fast and fun trails like the Esker Trail. CRNEMBA volunteer extraordinaire Lori Gerencer teamed up with NEMBA legend Bill Boles and Dana Friend to get people registered, informed, and pointed in the right direction for the day’s events. The CRNEMBA end-of-season BBQ was held on the deck of the Sugarloaf Outdoor Center overlooking the pond with views of Sugarloaf Mountain (the spot must rank just behind the Tetons as the world’s most recognizable view). CRNEMBA board member and event co-organizer Joe Hines pulled together the goods for a great meal. Dave Hughes, also a CRNEMBA board member and event co-organizer, raffled off some sweet goodies provided by Down East Bicycle Specialists and introduced CRNEMBA President Pete Smith who summarized recent developments within the club and its plans over the coming year. Sincere thanks to Sugarloaf for providing the Outdoor Center at no charge for the event and for use of the PA system and other equipment.   Thank you to Maine Huts & Trails for the grand raffle prize of an overnight stay in one of their huts. And to Down East Bicycle Specialists for the other great raffle prizes, demo bikes and their continued support of CRNEMBA. And thanks to these organizations for supporting the event too (we couldn’t do these events without all the help!): Geary’s for the donated beverages, Maine Huts & Trails for providing the food at their cost, The Irregular for running the free front-page event story, and Maine High Peaks Alliance for including the event info on their sign.

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