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President's Letter to Catskill Mountain Club Members

DEAR MEMBER

Last year was an exciting one full of quantum leaps for the Catskill Mountain Club (CMC) and provided impetus for rapid future growth, including:  

 
Expanded Trail Building - New York City’s DEP (Department of Environmental Protection) gave us the green light to begin building trails on city land recently opened for public use (see: http://www.watershedpost.com/2013/dep-opens-cannonsville-motors-and-watershed-land-trails/). Also, Delaware County has asked us to begin mapping these DEP parcels and, along with the NY/NJ Trail Conference, will be providing us with equipment and training. 
 
Membership Growth; New Board members - CMC’s membership continued to grow and currently is at 800.  Our board of directors also expanded with the addition of Jeff Senterman, Catskill representative of the NY/NJ Trail Conference, Lisa Lyons, proprietor of Morgan Outdoors Inc., in Livingston Manor, Amy Beveridge, Manager of Fund Development at O’Connor Hospital in Delhi, and Jeff Ditchek, an independent management consultant to not-for-profit organizations.  The board now numbers 12 men and women - all volunteers - dedicated to bringing exciting outdoor activities to the region we all enjoy so much.  You are always welcome as a member to attend board meetings.
 
Our Incorporation - We achieved not-for-profit incorporation status in September and are now in the process of applying for tax-exempt status, which we hope to achieve this year. 
 
A Successful Lark in the Park - Last year’s Ninth Annual Lark in the Park celebration (September 29-October 8), resulted in more than 300 people participating in 42 events over the 10-day period, including our first annual dinner which drew 65 people to the Hanah Resort on a Sunday night (September 30).  We expect an even greater number and variety of events this year as we mark the 10th Anniversary of the “Lark” which once again will be co-sponsored by the NY/NJ Trail Conference and Catskill Center for Conservation and Development.  
 
Increased Media Coverage - Media interest in CMC’s activities accelerated, resulting in exposure in the Oneonta Star, The Catskill Mountain News, Woodstock Times, Kingston Freeman, Walton Reporter, Delaware County Times, and The Watershed Post.   
 
We are now at a critical point in our growth and must rely more heavily than ever on tax-deductible donations * to cover growing costs as we build our club’s activities, including hiking, paddling, biking, family outings, outdoor educational events, fishing trips, trail stewardship, the Lark in the Park program, and to meet our internal needs.  Trail stewardship and our internal growth are high priorities this year:        
 
Trail-Building Plans - Plans include refurbishing a trail to the Rock Rift Fire Tower, near the Cannonsville Reservoir under the supervision of Board member Rick Roberts, who’s also Catskill representative of the Finger Lakes Trail Conference.  And, board member, Ann Roberti, who sparked the building of a rail trail in Andes, will be helping with efforts to approach other towns on building trails with CMC and local assistance.  
 
Internal Growth - We’re also planning to revamp CMC’s website, develop a brochure and collateral materials for outdoor festivals to promote club activities, and purchase trail building and maintenance tools.  
 
While we’re applying for grants to help us grow and add more activities, your membership support always will be our critical life-blood.
 
We hope you will stay with us and help us grow.  We also urge you to encourage family and friends to join us and share our growing list of activities aimed at heightening the wealth of experiences available in the Catskill region.  Please keep in mind we’re always looking for new volunteers, especially to lead hikes and for trail maintenance.  So stay in contact with us through our website to see how you can become further involved as an event leader or on our various trail stewardship programs.
 
Recommended Donation levels, based on ascending Catskill Mountain Heights: *  
 
    Blackhead ...............   $20
  Thomas Cole .............   $25 
  Black Dome ..............   $50
  Hunter ..................  $100
  Slide ...................  $250      

 
As a CMC member, you will continue to get timely information on all of our outdoor activities, from event listings on our two websites - www.catskillmountainclub.org/ and www.catskillslark.org/ and our online newsletter.  Not a bad bargain! 
                        
We look forward to hearing from you and wish everyone a healthy year of enjoyment of all our beautiful region offers to outdoor enthusiasts. 
 
Sincerely yours,   
  
Steve Berg, President

* All contributions to CMC are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law through our fiscal sponsor, the Catskill Center for Conservation and Development, a tax-exempt organization. 

See our link in the online store.  If you do not want to make an online donation, you can send a check (payable to “The Catskill Center” with “Catskill Mountain Club” in the memo line) to CCCD, PO Box 504, Arkville, NY 12406. 

 
Copyright © 2013 Catskill Mountain Club, Inc., All rights reserved.
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