When contacting elected officials, please be polite and concise. Note the legislation about which you are communicating, make your point, and thank them in advance for any support or consideration they give to your concerns. An attitude of "disagreeing without being disagreeable" will reflect well on the association and make your comments more powerful.
Copyright 1996-2014
The Maine Snowmobile Association

                 MSA News & Snowmobiling Issues

MSA Presents Awards
Maine Snowmobile Show dates set
Snowmobile Program Report Presented
Snowmobile Trail funding survey

Maine Snowmobile Association Presents Annual Recognitions
The Maine Snowmobile Association recently recognized a number of snowmobile club volunteers and friends of Maine snowmobiling at the association Annual Meeting held April 11, 2015 at the Pine Tree Camp in Rome. Honorees for the 2014-2015 winter snowmobile season are:
Snowmobile Club of the Year: Moosehead Riders Snowmobile Club of Greenville
The members of the Moosehead Riders Snowmobile Club have met some significant challenges during the past two seasons, and have come together to work through each situation. In the spring of 2013, the Town of Greenville learned that the contractor who had been maintaining area trails would no longer be grooming. The club and the town manager pulled together and developed a path to a solution. They raised money, involved local businesses, bought equipment, lined up groomer operators, and even made some significant improvements to the trail system. The next season a different kind of disaster struck. The club lost a critical section of ITS-85 when a landowner changed their mind about allowing access. Again the club members stepped up, and working with the town and IF&Ws Landowner Relations Director found a solution to get through the winter. In addition the club continues to maintain their welcoming clubhouse, and hosts a number of family oriented club events and the annual Memorial Ride dedicated to the B-52 crash on Elephant Mountain in 1963. Upon presentation of the award, MSA Executive Director Bob Meyers said "These folks really have it together, and demonstrate what a club can achieve."

Snowmobiler of the Year: Maurice Marden of Dover-Foxcroft
A member of the Piscataquis Valley Snowmobile Club, Maurice Marden has served the association as a Regional Director, a Nominating Committee member, and as Chair of the MSA Trails Committee. An advocate for the Maine snowmobiler, he currently serves on the state Snowmobile Advisory Committee. At the club level, Marden has been involved in grooming, trail signing, bridge maintenance and obtaining landowner permission for access. In addition, he loves to ride snowmobiles and spreads his enthusiasm for snowmobiling with family, friends and all who he encounters on the trails. He was described by MSA President Jim White as a true ambassador for the sport of snowmobiling. "Whether it's a conversation at a restaurant or gas station, or helping someone who is stuck or dealing with a mechanical issue on the trail, this person will do whatever is needed to make anybody's snowmobiling experience an enjoyable one."

Groomer of the Year: David Silvia of Medway
A dozen snowmobilers who ride trails maintained by groomer David Silvia took the time to send in his nomination for snowmobiler of the year. "Excellent", "perfect", "well groomed" were terms commonly found throughout. A member of the Jo Mary Riders Snowmobile Club, Silvia has groomed trails in the Katahdin Region for the past twelve years, grooming 3-4 times a week, a run that takes 10-12 hours to complete. He is also "meticulous" about his maintenance responsibilities. Silvia also serves as the club trailmaster, involved in preseason trail work and trail signage. Club member Laurie Godin writes "As I ride through these beautifully groomed trails I find inspiration ... Dave Silvia will have helped to contribute to making it as safe and enjoyable as possible."

Snowmobile Dealer of the Year: White Rock Outboard of Gorham, Owners George & Brenda Gherardi, Sally & Tim Hatch
Established in 1969, this family business sells and services boats, outboards, snowblowers, ATVs and of course, snowmobiles. Beginning with the Snow Prince brand, they first transitioned to Moto-Ski and more recently to the Arctic Cat line that they sell today. A Supporting Business member of the Ossipee Mountaineers SC, White Rock Outboard has provided the club with a snowmobile under flexible and generous terms for their Big Raffle for several years. The owners also donate to many other local service entities; Special Olympics, the Gorham boys and girls youth baseball, and Windham youth soccer are a few of the organizations that benefit from their generosity. After 40+ years in the business, the Gherardis plan to retire in the near future, passing the dealership on to their daughter Sally and son-in-law Tim.

Supporting Business of the Year: Wildwoods Trailside Cabins, Lodge & Restaurant of Brownville. Owner Cheri Brackett
Cheri Brackett and her son Chris, the owners of Wildwoods Trailside Cabins, Lodge & Restaurant, were nominated for recognition by MSA Trails Committee Chair Mike Grass. Grass notes that the business is a prime travel destination for riders in the greater Greenville, Millinocket, Alton and Dover-Foxcroft area. Wildwoods is located near the shores of Schoodic Lake on the Beech Ridge Trail maintained by the Brownville Snowmobile Club, offering cabins, fuel and food to snowmobilers enjoying area trails. A Supporting Business Member of the Brownville club, Wildwoods hosts an annual fundraiser to purchase required insurance for an important railroad crossing in the club's trail system. Additionally, a 1989 Tucker groomer calls Wildwoods home. The business was responsible for the acquisition of the equipment, which it continues to maintain and operate for the benefit of riders.

The President's Award: Aleta Rioux of Hebron
MSA President Jim White selected Aleta Rioux of Hebron, the current MSA Hospitality Chair, to receive the annual President's Award. During her years of volunteerism with the MSA, Rioux has served as MSA President, Executive Vice President and Regional Vice President. She is currently a representative to the DACF-Recreational Trails Grant Program. As chair of the nominating committee she has worked to attract members with fresh ideas and a willingness to donate time and energy to the MSA and is the driving force behind the MSA annual fundraising raffle. In 2004 she represented the state of Maine in the Polaris Way Out Women Ride to benefit Breast Cancer Research.

Maine Snowmobile Show Dates Set
Mark your calendars now, the MSA's 2015 Maine Snowmobile Show will be held October 16, 17 & 18 at the Augusta Civic Center.
MSA volunteers who are willing to donate some time stamping attendees hands or selling admission tickets should contact the office to be added to the schedule. Volunteers receive free admission to the show. Clubs interested in Super Raffle ticket sales should also drop an email to be considered for a time slot.
Exhibitor space is available. For information, contact MSA Executive Director Bob Meyers, 207-622-6983, email.

Snowmobile Program Report Presented
The Report of the Internal Review of the Snowmobile Program by Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Commissioner Walt Whitcomb, was presented to the Legislature's ACF Committee in early January. This study was initiated as a result of legislation introduced by the MSA last winter. We believe that the report and recommendations will help increase transparency and equity within the program and help clubs statewide as we move forward. View the report.

Report of the Snowmobile Trail Funding Survey:
This is the report on the results of the Snowmobile Trail Grooming Funding Survey that was undertaken in the winter and spring of 2011 by Dr. Stephen Reiling of the University of Maine Orono in conjunction with the MSA Trails Committee. The study was funded as part of the MSA Trails Committee contract with the Department of Conservation this past season. There was a great response from clubs and municipal projects across the state, and the results are interesting reading - see what folks think here:Click here to view the report.