We Need Your Support: An Open Letter To Snowmobilers
Published on Sunday, February 12, 2012 in Guest Columns, News & Updates
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To all snowmobilers… I overheard a couple of fellow snowmobilers talking about our “lack of snow this season” and the fact that the forecast doesn’t look promising. It was actually an upbeat conversation until they spoke of how proud they were of themselves for saving the $40 or so by not getting a SAM pass and joining a club. I then asked how much time they spent with their club out on the trails cleaning up storm damage, fixing or replacing bridges, talking with landowners and getting grooming equipment ready. Low and behold it got very quiet. I ask if they knew where the money for the SAM pass actually goes. They said, “the damn state!” Sorry guys but that’s not true.

SAM is not a state agency. The volunteer membership has its own governing body and its own budget, elected officers and works with many state agencies, but not for any. They include the Environmental Police, Fisheries and Wildlife, and the DCR. SAM has people fighting for our snowmobile rights in Boston, on Beacon Hill, where some may not understand what snowmobilers are actually all about.

I asked if they realized what club dues actually do? I was answered with blank stares. The fact of the matter is this: we haven’t got any snow – yet – but the trails are ready for riding thanks to the countless hours of labor from volunteers. Bridges and groomers were ready to go this year only because of last year’s dues that were paid by its members: Funding for the clubs. If nobody bought club memberships and trail passes our clubs and SAM would cease to exist and we would be in the same boat as the ATVs. That being, all dressed up and no where to ride.

Sorry for being so long winded, the short version is this: Snow or no snow… if you want the support of SAM and your clubs, if you want to have trails ready for snow this year, next year and years to come, buy your trail pass every year! We all need to support SAM and our clubs so we can all keep enjoying our sport right here in our own backyards.

Brad Stafford, President, Bernardston-Gill-Leyden Snowmobile Club (BGL)

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