New Montana Office of Outdoor Recreation

During the 2017 legislative session, an effort supported by the majority of Montana’s recreation community to create a new office of outdoor recreation failed in committee.  However Governor Steve Bullock, seeing the potential value of such a venture, created the Montana Office of Outdoor Recreation.  Several other states have similar offices including Wyoming, Utah, Washington and Colorado.  Rachel VandeVoort assumed the duties as the first director of Montana’s Office.

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State Parks and Recreation Board Members Named

In late August, Governor Steve Bullock appointed four new members and retained one existing member to the Montana State Parks and Recreation Board.

The Governor also issued a directive to Martha Williams, Director of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, to create an advisory board to help the parks board build and implement a new vision for parks, as outlined in its 2020 strategic plan.

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5 Rivers Trail Riders

By Rich Winget, President, % Rivers Trail Riders

Many of us believe that it has been too long that the Bozeman area has been without an off-highway-vehicle (OHV) club.  That led to 20 locals meeting to discuss organizing one.  To make a long story short, we elected a board of directors, worked with Citizens for Balanced Use (CBU) and the Montana Trail Vehicle Riders Association (MTVRA), wrote our bylaws and completed the application to the State of Montana to become recognized as a nonprofit corporation.  This package is ready to send to the State next week.  The name of our club is the 5 Rivers Trail Riders (5RTR).

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Friends of the Little Belts

Friends of the Little Belts applied for and received an OHV grant to purchase Silky hand saws for members of the various groups to carry in back packs of on vehicles to help with the huge clearing issue that is facing the trail users due to the bug kill and normal downed timber on the trails in the area.  The grant was for less than requested and many groups have offered to help with the purchase price for their members.  Funding for the project isn’t available until July 1st, which is late for this year but the saws will be put to work as soon as they are in.

New Little Belt Travel Maps

Maps for 2017 have been edited and are ready to head to the printers.  The maps will have a new name on them this year, as the project is now part of a Challenge Cost Share project with the USFS.  The agreement has been signed and the maps this year will have the Friends of the Little Belts listed.

The Great Falls Trail Bike Riders Association is a member of the group and is using the map printing money they were granted for the printing for this edition.  This year there are panels available for ads and all placements have been sold.   Watch for the new maps.  Future printing grants will be from the Friends of the Little Belts group.

Thanks To Russ Ehnes!

From Mike Jeffords, Board Member, Montana Trail Vehicle Riders Association

June 1st was a date of change that most people didn’t even know happened. On that day, Russ Ehnes left NOHVCC as Executive Director. After directing NOHVCC for almost 20 years, Russ stepped down and turned the leadership over to new hands.

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Duane Taylor Named Executive Director of NOHVCC

The National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council (NOHVCC) has announced the appointment of Duane Taylor as its executive director, effective June 1. Taylor replaces Russ Ehnes, who is retiring from that position after nearly two decades.

“I am excited about this new opportunity,” said Taylor. “I have worked extensively with NOHVCC over the past 12 years while representing the powersports industry, and I have a great deal of passion for its mission. I am prepared to build on its successes and continue its key initiatives, while working to expand its reach, scope and effectiveness.”

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AMA Names Russ Ehnes 2017 Outstanding Off-Road Rider

by Dave Halsey, NOHVCC Contributing Writer

The American Motorcyclist Association recently announced the recipients of its 2017 AMA Awards. The individuals and organizations selected by the AMA Board of Directors have made outstanding contributions to the motorcycling community; and their efforts support the AMA mission to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As reported in the official AMA press release:

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New ‘Friends’ Group Formed

Russ Ehnes

The Friends of the Little Belts met in Great Falls and adopted their bylaws, mission statement and elected officers.  Articles of Incorporation were filed in January marking the official start-up date of the group.  Officers elected at the March meeting were President, Russ Ehnes, 1st Vice President, Frank LaLiberty, 2nd Vice President Scott Davis, Directors at Large: Scott Herzog, Peter Jennings & Ron Shortridge.  Secretary appointed, and not filled, Treasurer, Mona Ehnes.

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Montana Trail Vehicle Riders Association
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Great Falls, MT 59403

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