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IMBA Guest Post: More Than a Singletrack Mind

How FATRAC Exceeded Their Dig In Project Goal

By: Deborah Young

Posted: June 7, 2023

The Folsom Auburn Trail Riders Coalition (FATRAC) is dedicated to promoting and preserving off-road trails for mountain biking in Northern California's Folsom and Auburn areas, building sustainable trail systems, and fostering a vibrant mountain biking community. Since 1988 we have built miles of trails in the region.

FATRAC partnered with the American River Conservancy (ARC), a local land trust, to develop a trail system on ARC’s recently acquired lands near the existing Salmon Falls trail system. These efforts culminated in the spring of 2023 with the construction and completion of the Chaparral Ridge Trail on the ARC property known as Salmon Falls Ranch.

Chaparral Ridge is situated between earlier trail construction on Salmon Falls Ranch and the historic Darrington Trail, an iconic 7.5 mile out and back hugging the outline of Folsom Lake and within the Folsom Lake State Recreation Area. Chaparral Ridge Trail is a 1.7-mile downhill addition turning a tough out-and-back hill climb into a thrilling loop with stunning views of Folsom Lake.

Fundraising Strategies

Our approach for the IMBA Dig In fundraiser focused on engaging the community, partnering with local businesses, hosting trail workdays, and showing appreciation for workers and donors. Through these strategies, we were able to meet our $20,000 goal and build this trail in time for this 2023 riding season, all while boosting the visibility of FATRAC and IMBA.

Early on, FATRAC collaborated with local shops to promote a swag pack of FATRAC-branded shirts and socks picked up at participating shops. This allowed us to raise funds, leverage swag inventories, and drive donors to participating shops. This partnership showcased the importance of supporting local businesses and rallied shops behind our cause.

In the last ten days of the fundraiser, we gave away some exciting prizes donated by those shops. Our time-limited giveaway generated urgency and motivated supporters to make last-minute contributions, extending the stoke generated earlier in the promotion to the very end and maintaining the buzz within the local MTB community about a new purpose-built trail, built for riding.

Partnerships & Showing Appreciation

Our partnership with ARC was pivotal. By highlighting collaboration and shared goals, we strengthened the sense of unity within our community, built trust with our partners, and reinforced the importance of partnerships toward bigger goals. By attaining our fundraising goals, we showed our partners that FATRAC, IMBA, and the MTB community could deliver on a big project.

We showed appreciation to our volunteers through great meals after every work session and by posting reels on social media after each trail workday. Organizing dig days and emphasizing volunteer engagement fostered camaraderie, building passion in the local community.

Our Chaparral Trail Build journey highlights the importance of collaboration, appreciation, and community engagement in achieving fundraising success.

FATRAC’s vision for our area is a comprehensive and interconnected trail network that showcases the natural beauty of our region and its rugged terrain. We have worked for 35 years to influence trail planning in and around the Folsom Lake State Recreation Area. We envision a diverse range of trails catering to different skill levels, from beginner-friendly paths to thrilling advanced routes.

Our aim is to provide opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to explore and connect with nature while promoting sustainability and environmental stewardship. We strive to foster a vibrant and inclusive mountain biking community, encouraging active participation and ensuring the long-term enjoyment of our trails for generations to come.

Meet Deborah, a passionate advocate for trail access and development, working with FATRAC (Folsom Auburn Trail Riders Action Coalition); she takes pride in her role as an advocate for trail access and organizational development. Getting her hands dirty and actively participating in trail-building projects has been an exceptional experience. With a 22-year career as a trainer and nutrition coach in the fitness industry, coupled with a decade of personal mountain biking experience, she effortlessly merges her passion for the sport with her role as an advocate. She believes in fostering a strong sense of community among riders, promoting camaraderie, and raising awareness to garner support. With specialized training programs designed specifically for the demands of mountain biking, she is on a mission to empower and inspire more women to hit the trails. For Deborah, advocacy and training go hand in hand, fueling her dedication to make a lasting impact.

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