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  1. #1
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    Upper Midwest Gravity Summit 2012 Red Wing 9/15 and 9/16

    Upper Midwest Gravity Summit 2012 Red Wing 9/15 and 9/16
    Please pass the info along to any and all who may be interested: Email lists, forums, facebook, twitter, etc.
    Upper Midwest Gravity Summit 2012

    Who: Any person interested in gravity fed mountain biking. This includes riders, promoters, builders, advocates, etc of downhill, freeride, super d, and enduro racing and riding.

    Why: Over the last couple of years there has been some shifting of the tides in the gravity scene around here. We've seen lots of successful and unsuccessful races and series come and go but one thing hasn't changed: gravity events and trails will only develop and grow with input from involved riders (and by input I mean take the reigns and lead). Lately many have noted that the regional community lacks unity or cohesive energy. By improving this unity, we as a larger community, will be able to be more productive in trail building, advocacy, and event promotion efforts. This summit will give us a chance to meet other involved riders, learn about other regional scenes, ride some fun gravity fueled trails, identify growing scenes, events, trends, as well as current and future leaders in the gravity scene, and find out how you can support those leaders through organized and efficient volunteerism.

    What: A weekend of riding, eating, drinking, riding, socializing, camping, planning, and riding.

    Where: Red Wing, MN. Memorial park trails offer 2 distinct DH runs, miles of single track, and easy access to food drink and entertainment in historic Downtown Red Wing. The host site at the home of Jed and Kelly Olson offers camping, bonfiring, grilling and pumptrack.

    When: September 15-16


    Saturday 9/15
    10:00: Arrival and open time on the pumptrack and dirt jumps (At Olson's)

    11:00: MEETING-- This is the important part. Topics will include overall direction of gravity riding, unification and cooperation of efforts, identification of leadership, potential upcoming building, potential upcoming races/events/series. (At Olson's)

    Early afternoon: Riding at Memorial Park (2 DH runs with lots of up and DOWN on the XC loops) only about 1.5 miles from the Olson's

    Dinner Time: Grill and Socialize Dinner is BYOB and free will offering for food (Back to the Olson's)

    Later: Bonfire and socialization then camping for those who wish to stay


    Sunday 9/16 Ride and trickle out throughout the day


    The Olson's: Our address is 27380 Sevastopol Rd. South, Red Wing, MN 55066 BUT you may have better luck just following these directions: Leave Red Wing heading South on hwy 61, go about a mile past Mississippi National Golf Course, Take the first right past Cemstone (Sevastopol Rd.) Go down the dirt road, cross the tracks, you'll see the house on the left.


    You can send RSVP to
    Jed Olson
    ibjed@hotmail.com

  2. #2
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    Thanks for posting this, it's on my calendar

  3. #3
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    Awesome, can't wait to see you there! bring all your friends that are interested in gravity riding and want to see it grow in the midwest!

  4. #4
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    Updates on this weekend:

    Weather looks to be on our side for riding and camping

    Fire restriction is on, so the bonfire will become a large campfire.

    I'll provide some PB and J and fruit for a light lunch during the meeting so we can get over to the hill and ride

    I'll provide meat to be grilled and some sides for the BBQ, bring your own accompanying beverages

    Free will donation to cover food costs

    Be on time for the 11:00 meeting so we can get done with plenty of time to RIDE!

  5. #5
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    Upper Midwest Gravity Summit 2012 Red Wing 9/15 and 9/16
    Please pass the info along to any and all who may be interested: Email lists, forums, facebook, twitter, etc.
    Upper Midwest Gravity Summit 2012

    Who: Any person interested in gravity fed mountain biking. This includes riders, promoters, builders, advocates, etc of downhill, freeride, super d, and enduro racing and riding.

    Why: Over the last couple of years there has been some shifting of the tides in the gravity scene around here. We've seen lots of successful and unsuccessful races and series come and go but one thing hasn't changed: gravity events and trails will only develop and grow with input from involved riders (and by input I mean take the reigns and lead). Lately many have noted that the regional community lacks unity or cohesive energy. By improving this unity, we as a larger community, will be able to be more productive in trail building, advocacy, and event promotion efforts. This summit will give us a chance to meet other involved riders, learn about other regional scenes, ride some fun gravity fueled trails, identify growing scenes, events, trends, as well as current and future leaders in the gravity scene, and find out how you can support those leaders through organized and efficient volunteerism.

    What: A weekend of riding, eating, drinking, riding, socializing, camping, planning, and riding.

    Where: Red Wing, MN. Memorial park trails offer 2 distinct DH runs, miles of single track, and easy access to food drink and entertainment in historic Downtown Red Wing. The host site at the home of Jed and Kelly Olson offers camping, bonfiring, grilling and pumptrack.

    When: September 15-16


    Saturday 9/15
    10:00: Arrival and open time on the pumptrack and dirt jumps (At Olson's)

    11:00: MEETING-- This is the important part. Topics will include overall direction of gravity riding, unification and cooperation of efforts, identification of leadership, potential upcoming building, potential upcoming races/events/series. (At Olson's)

    Early afternoon: Riding at Memorial Park (2 DH runs with lots of up and DOWN on the XC loops) only about 1.5 miles from the Olson's

    Dinner Time: Grill and Socialize Dinner is BYOB and free will offering for food (Back to the Olson's)

    Later: Bonfire and socialization then camping for those who wish to stay


    Sunday 9/16 Ride and trickle out throughout the day


    The Olson's: Our address is 27380 Sevastopol Rd. South, Red Wing, MN 55066 BUT you may have better luck just following these directions: Leave Red Wing heading South on hwy 61, go about a mile past Mississippi National Golf Course, Take the first right past Cemstone (Sevastopol Rd.) Go down the dirt road, cross the tracks, you'll see the house on the left.


    You can send RSVP to
    Jed Olson
    ibjed@hotmail.com

  6. #6
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    In the timely fashion I've been operating in lately, here is a recap and a bit of info from the Gravity Summit held a couple weeks ago. If you don't like the format, feel free to re-type it!

    There were 16 people in attendance, several which I was pleased to meet for the first time. After a brief pumptrack session the meeting got underway commencing with introductions and a brief survey used to gather info and to give those in attendance an idea of who else was there and how others were approaching the downhill scene.

    1. How do you identify yourself?
    rider 13
    builder 15
    organizer 5
    advocate 12
    observer 7
    other 2

    2. Do you feel gravity riding is currently accessible?
    yes 13
    no 2

    3. Do you travel for gravity riding?
    yes 14
    no 1

    4. If yes, how often?
    <2 hrs <5x/year 3
    <2 hrs >5x/year 11
    >4 hrs <5x/yr 7
    >4 hrs >5x/yr 5
    (remember the alligator eats the larger value)

    5. In the next year, do you plan a riding trip to:
    Northern MN 14
    Southern MN 12
    Northern WI 5
    Central WI 3
    Southern WI 0
    UP, MI 7
    Black hills 2
    Rockies 7
    West Coast 2
    East Coast 1
    International 0

    6. What would you consider your favorite type of gravity riding?
    Super D-ish 2
    Freeride 4
    Jumpline 1
    Downhill race run 5
    DS/4X 1
    Flow Trail 2

    7. Do you prefer racing based events or riding based events?
    Racing 1
    Riding 12

    8. Do you or would you race the following?
    DH 12
    Super D 5
    DS/4X 7
    Enduro 6

    9. How many hours/wk are you willing to commit to keeping a scene alive? (advocacy, media, building, organizing, etc)
    1 0
    2-3 3
    4-8 11
    8+ 0


    Two interesting points of the survey show that riders are looking for more than just races and if we can keep ourselves directed we have a solid base of man hours to commit to the cause (2000+).



    Following the survey, we had a fairly open flowing discussion. The two primary points were the prospects of having a series tying the races in the region together and continuing Midwest Freeride Community and Jolly Roger Races in their current form.

    Midwest DH series: Chance Glasford kicked up the conversation and lots of others chimed in with ideas, thoughts, and doubts. In the end I think the general conclusion was that running the series from a central body and having local clubs/organizers actually put on the race under one unified banner would be a job that needed lots of work and attention and maybe someday could actually be a job for someone and make some money. Until then the most realistic version to tie multiple races together would be to simply host and compile results throughout the season of already existing gravity events (without direct involvement of the race insurance and license hassles are avoided). Most of those present agreed that they'd be interested in participating in this type of set up. If you are a race promoter/host and would be interested in being included in something like this hit up Chance. If you can't find him on his blog or in the forums, you are using the wrong internet.

    MFC/Jolly Roger: (Disclaimer- I know most of the representation of this event was from MN and the Twin Cities area so some of the generalizations may be specific to that. And, I'm not aware of all the other events that are happening further out from my little sphere of stay at home dadship) Tony and Buck of MFC (Midwest Freeride Community | About the Midwest Freeride Community) have been the heart of most of the DH races in MN in the last half decade and the "regular" riders in their races make up a large contingency of a wider circle of events and scenes and the Jolly Roger series was the closest thing we had to a consistent series anywhere in the region (don't know if there is still a series of sorts over in Lower Michigan). First I must say thank you to those two guys. At this point in the game neither of them is able to continue to keep the pace needed within their organization to continue to host, produce, and grow progresive riding events. The upcoming race at Giant's Ridge on Oct. 13 will be the final event for Jolly Roger under the Tony and Buck co-captain command. And sometime after that the website MFC - Midwest Freeride Community will slowly fade with fewer and fewer content updates and eventually they won't pay to renew the domain and it too will remain only as a memory. It is not very common in the pirate world but both of them would like to see a mutiny. They are looking for motivated folks to hand the keys to. Not looking for payment or commemoration, just wanting to see the vibe continue. If you are interested in keeping some or all of what they started alive, give them a shout. With this, I also have to say if you just want to see it stay alive without putting some skin in the game... actually don't give them a shout, keep that to yourself. I can provide contact info if you need it.

    What's next, what can you do:
    1. Vote on November 6th. The first step to being an active citizen is being an active citizen so vote, or even don't vote, but at least make a choice about it.

    2. Ride. Ride more often, at more places, and talk to more people. Then when you meet more people, plan to ride more places with them. When you go other places to ride, thank builders and spend money at local businesses and talk loudly about how much fun you had, but try not to sound like a neanderthal... bra!

    3. Race (or at least go support events). Don't know for sure but I think Oct 13 is the last chance to race DH in the region for this fall. Come spring there should be plenty of races to hit and research them early so you don't have to complain that you missed all of them. I'm not even gonna list the races I think are happening because I'll forget obvious one s and look like a fool.

    4. Build/advocate: Your mom and dad probably aren't going to be the ones who build your next favorite dh trail, so if you want to see riding, step up and take charge. (try not to sound like a neanderthal). Get involved locally and regionally. Educate yourself on proper building techniques and study successful projects/trails.

    5. Go to Copper Harbor. (bring your bike).

    6. Ride Spirit Mountain's new stuff come spring

    7. Go to bed cause you gotta change diapers in a couple hours and sleep is more valuable than emails.

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