NOHVCC Newsletter - August 2017 edition

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In this Issue:




‘Forward Momentum’ Was Theme Of Joint NOHVCC/INOHVAA Conference

by Dave Halsey, NOHVCC Contributing Writer


The National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council (NOHVCC) and the International OHV Administrators Association (INOHVAA) held its joint annual conference on August 22 to 27, 2017, in Manchester, New Hampshire.


People talking in groups during conferenceIt’s the first time a NOHVCC Conference has been held in New England. “The NOHVCC has been looking forward to hosting a conference in this beautiful part of the country,” said Dan Kleen, NOHVCC President. “We are proud to be here this year, and want to thank our Northeastern NOHVCC State Partners for their hard work on this year’s conference. We are also excited to welcome back all of our good friends from around the United States, Canada, and other countries.”


The theme for the conference was ‘Forward Momentum’. It was the 37th NOHVCC conference and the 16th joint conference. “While this year’s conference will necessarily be different, it will be familiar at the same time,” said Duane Taylor, new NOHVCC Executive Director. “The NOHVCC family represents the best and brightest the OHV community has to offer, and I look forward to working with and learning from all of you.” Taylor replaces Russ Ehnes, who held the position of Executive Director for nearly 20 years.


The joint conference creates a communications forum through which land managers, enthusiasts, organizations, and the OHV industry share information and experiences, participate in educational opportunities, and become partners in “Creating a Positive Future for Responsible OHV Recreation.” It is also a great opportunity for education regarding current and future best management practices, and to get recharged for the year ahead.


Here is a summary of each day’s events.


Tuesday: Day One of the joint conference included a meeting of the NOHVCC Staff and Board of Directors, and an Agency Program Round Table discussion by OHV Program Managers from around the country, hosted by INOHVAA.


Wednesday: The annual meeting of INOHVAA was led by Chris Gamache, INOHVAA Chair, and included a general business session, election of officers for the coming year, and group discussions on a variety of topics.

Afternoon sessions included these titles:
  • The Bureau of Land Management’s Top 20 OHV Riding Area Website. The BLM is creating an interactive website that will highlight some of the best OHV opportunities that it manages. Through cooperation with NOHVCC and its partners, this new BLM website will showcase quality riding areas, the type of trails you will find on-site, the facilities you can utilize, and much more.
  • The U.S. Forest Service’s New Chainsaw Policy. The Forest Service, working with other agencies, partners and the public, established a policy for training and the use of crosscut saws and chainsaws.
  • Trends, Opportunities and Issues with OHV Over-Snow Recreation. This panel discussion explored opportunities, trends, and issues related to use of OHVs for winter over-snow vehicle (OSV) recreation.


Thursday: This year’s Mobile Workshop consisted of aDirt bikes and ATVs lined up in front of the NH Education Trailer Management and a Trail Tour, attended by over 100 riders. It was held at the Hopkinton-Everett ATV Trails Area, near Everett Lake, NH. The Management Tour of the area included a discussion on successful management practices and sustainable trail development. Also on sight were the ATV Safety Institute (ASI) ATV RiderCourse®, Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) Dirtbike School®, and Recreational OHV Association (ROHVA) DriverCourse®. A number of conference attendees went through the various safety training certification courses.


Thursday evening featured a reception and dinner for all conference attendees, and included the annual INOHVAA awards presentation (see separate article).


Friday: The day started with a breakfast meeting for new conference attendees hosted by the NOHVCC Board of Directors. It was followed by a welcome session to the joint NOHVCC & INOHVAA Conference.

Presentations were made throughout the day, covering a wide variety of topics:
  • Update from MIC – Tim Buche, Motorcycle Industry Council President
  • What is Happening at NOHVCC - New ideas in NOHVCC’s future, Duane Taylor
  • Recreational Trails Program Update - Christopher Douwes, FHWA Community Planner
  • Making the Most of Grant Funding - Al Sain, ICV ATV ClubGroup of people during conference session
  • Economic Impacts and the Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable - Roundtable discussion with MIC, SVIA and ROHVA which are ORIR members
  • The Digital Forest at Owasippe Scout Reservation - John Nelson, Scout Troop Leader
  • Hatfield McCoy Trail System as an Economic Agency - Mike Pinkerton, Ride Hatfield-McCoy
  • NYPUM and California State Parks: Working Together – Ken Hutchinson, National Youth Project Utilizing Minibikes
  • Rails-to-Trails and Motorized Use - Panel discussion, Chris Gamache, Moderator
  • Boy Scouts National Jamboree and Partnerships - Dan Moore, K-M Boy Scouts Ranch and Montana BSA Council, and Dana Anderson, Polaris Industries
  • BLM Strategic Planning - Brad Colin, BLM; Marc Hildesheim, NOHVCC
  • Rails-with-Trails - Jared Fijalkowski, US DOT
  • Critical Habitat, OHV Use, and the Partnerships that Pull it Together - Justin Massingill, Texas Motorized Trail Coalition; Carol Smith, TxTeamm
  • Ride the Wilds - Harry Brown, Guide the Wilds
  • Youth Corps Presentation - Chris Gomon and Amanda Wallace, American Youth Works
  • INOHVAA Committee Time - INOHVAA members continue with their annual meeting and their committee activities


Saturday: This was the second day of the NOHVCC conference. Following a morning kick-off and discussion of the election process for NOHVCC officers, the following presentations and panel discussions were made:
  • What is Happening in the OHV Industry? - Erik Pritchard, MIC, SVIA, ROHVA
  • Website Template for OHV Clubs and Associations - James Freeman and Sean Fiorito, Ride Trails
  • Constructing the Champion Creek Bridge - Al Sain, ICV ATV Club
  • The Bureau of Land Management’s Top 20 OHV Riding Area Website - Dennis Byrd, BLM
  • Update from Washington, D.C. - Larry Smith, ARRA
  • Partnerships and Building the Arizona Peace Trail - JC Sanders, Arizona Peace Trail
  • Lessons for Building a Motorized Park - Ernie Lombard, NOHVCC State Partner (ID)
  • Introduction to Great Trails Training - Marc Hildesheim and Jack Terrell, NOHVCC
  • Building a State Association, Matt House and Dan Brown, Connecticut Off-Road Enthusiasts Coalition
  • How a Non-Profit Fills an Agency Role of OHV Program Management – Danny Hale, Vermont ATV Sportsmen Association
  • American Trails and Motorized Use – Mike Passo, American Trails Executive Director
  • Helmet Trade-In Program – Wayne Daub and Caroline Richards, All-Terrain Quad Council of Canada
  • Effectively Communicating with Agency Personnel – Tom Crimmins, NOHVCC Management Solutions


The sessions ended with a period of brainstorming the potential Group enjoying lunch at the trailheadstructure of NOHVCC without using the Teams. The NOHVCC teams were necessary and useful during the first 25 years of NOHVCC. However, much of the work during the past few years was accomplished by staff. The Network Development Team will continue to run as is, but the function of the rest of the Teams will be reviewed by the NOHVCC Board.


Wrapping up the conference in the evening was a Celebration Dinner and NOHVCC Awards Ceremony (see separate articles on awards and Hall of Fame inductees).


“We would like to thank all of our sponsors, who helped make the 2017 NOHVCC and INOHVAA Conferences possible. We truly appreciate their support,” said Dan Kleen, NOHVCC President.


Sponsors who made this year’s conference possible include: Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC), Speciality Vehicle Institute of America (SVIA), Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (ROHVA), U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration, NOHVCC Management Solutions, Right Rider Access Fund, Polaris, Kawasaki, Honda, KTM, Husqvarna, Great Outdoors Consultants, Minnesota DNR, Alta Motors, and the New Hampshire Dealers Association.


A round of applause goes to the NOHVCC staff for their hard work organizing this year’s conference: Duane Taylor, Jack Terrell, Karen Umphress, Marc Hildesheim and Laura Feist. This year’s conference presentations will be made available on the NOHVCC web site on the “Education” page.


NOHVCC and its State and Associate State Partners work hard to meet its mission: “Creating a Positive Future for OHV Recreation.” For more information, visit To contact NOHVCC about its many “tools” and educational materials available to OHV clubs, agencies and schools, send an email to or call 800-348-6487.


Save The Dates! The 2018 NOHVCC/INOHVAA Conference will be held August 14-18, in Grand Rapids, Michigan.



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INOHVAA Presents National Awards To Recipients In Nevada And Maine

by Dave Halsey, NOHVCC Contributing Writer


The International Off-Highway Vehicle Administrators Association (INOHVAA) held its annual meeting August 22 to 25, 2017, in Manchester, New Hampshire, during the joint conference of INOHVAA and the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council (NOHVCC). Updates were given on standing committees, including By-laws and Resolutions; Legislative; Web/Marketing; Planning; Financial Survey; Trails; Safety, Enforcement, Education; and Awards and Nominations.


“INOHVAA continues to work on building and growing its organization along with participating with the NOHVCC conference,” said Chris Gamache, INOHVAA Chair, and Chief of the New Hampshire Bureau of Trails. “A lot of good work has been done over the past 5 years by INOHVAA members to formalize its organization.


“INOHVAA’s purpose is to provide a network for OHV program managers to share information and ideas, and develop national strategies for managing safe, ethical, sustainable, and high-quality OHV recreational opportunities. This year we plan to continue to finalize a Trail Signing Guideline; get some resolutions or direction to address major safety and industry topics such as on-highway vehicle use, registration, and funding updates; and get further into uniform safety education ideas and noise compliance. This has been a busy year of topics for OHV manufacturers and many of our programs. OHV recreation continues to be a quickly growing sport and trying to keep ahead of issues will be important for all of us.”


The 2017 INOHVAA awards were presented on August 24th at the organization’s annual awards ceremony:


INOHVAA Special Recognition Award: Nevada OHV Commission
Nevada OHV Commission logos“The International OHV Administrators Association is happy to recognize the Nevada Off-Highway Vehicle Commission with its 2017 Special Recognition Award,” said Brian Bronson, INOHVAA Nominations and Award Chair and Maine OHV Division. “This organization was authorized in July of 2011 and had a tough start. They were given no funding and no paid staff to accomplish anything. The Nevada DMV started the state registration program and was allowed to keep all funding from the first year to reimburse the start-up costs; as such the Commissioner had no funds to award its first grant round in 2013. Threat of lawsuit from the user community caused the State Attorney to help the Commission reorganize, set up formal rules and basically start over again. They awarded their first grant rounds in the fall of 2015.


“Since then the 11 Commissioner, all-volunteer positions, have continued to move things forward to improve the OHV program in Nevada. In the fall of 2016, the State agreed to adopt the OHV Commission as a formal program in the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. Despite all of the obstacles in their way, the Nevada OHV Commission stayed true to their mission and now the state has an OHV program.”


INOHVAA Hall Of Fame Award: Brian Bronson, Division of Off-Highway Vehicles, Maine
Brian Bronson stands near ATV (handle bars shown)“The International OHV Administrators Association (INOHVAA) is proud to present this year’s Hall of Fame Award to Brian Bronson, State of Maine, Division of Off Highway Vehicles,” said Gamache.


“Brian is an individual that has worked endless hours with landowners and clubs to develop ATV trails in the State of Maine. He took a program that was pretty much non-existing, and extended it to 125+ clubs and over 6,000 miles of trails; which cover every part of the state.


“He has worked with law enforcement of all levels to help with enforcement actions, but also works to teach the public proper ethics and safety of operating an ATV. He has developed both club and municipal grant programs, along with landowner relations programs for clubs to use in helping with trail development and education. Together with Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, and the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, he produced ATV safety training/educational brochures, to teach new riders the proper and safe way to enjoy this recreation. And he worked tirelessly on their Best Management Practices (BMP) Manual for trail construction.


“Brian has been instrumental in helping to create new laws to better the sport and give law enforcement tools to protect property owners and help with landowner relations. The State of Maine ATV program would not be where it is today if not for the efforts Brian has put into it. And, the members of INOHVAA have all benefitted by copying and adapting programs that he developed.”



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OHV Leaders Are Inducted Into NOHVCC Hall of Fame

by Dave Halsey, NOHVCC Contributing Writer


Each year, a highlight of the annual conference of the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council (NOHVCC) is the announcement of the newest inductees into the NOHVCC Hall of Fame. It’s an impressive list of people who have made a positive impact on NOHVCC’s mission and values. At its annual conference, held in Manchester, New Hampshhire, NOHVCC inducted three OHV leaders into the 2017 class of the NOHVCC Hall of Fame.


NOHVCC Hall of Fame Inductee: Dick Lepley
Dick LepleyThe first NOHVCC Hall of Fame inductee for 2017 is Dick Lepley. He started a powersports dealership in Pennsylvania in the mid-‘60s, and has a 50-year track record of advocating for OHV recreation. “Dick has served as an active NOHVCC State Partner and a member of the NOHVCC Board of Directors,” said Jack Terrell, NOHVCC Senior Project Manager. “He has applied his experience in radio broadcasting and marketing to the development of many of NOHVCC’s educational products and programs. To many people he is known as ‘the voice of NOHVCC’, providing scripts and audio voiceovers for many NOHVCC education videos.”


NOHVCC Hall of Fame Inductee: Danny Hale
Danny Hale Hall of Fame Class of 2017The second Hall of Fame Award was presented to Danny Hale, Executive Director of the Vermont ATV Sportsman’s Association, Inc. (VASA), and NOHVCC State Partner. “Over the course of my 18-and-a-half year career as the executive director of NOHVCC, I’ve had the pleasure of working with a lot of great board members,” said Russ Ehnes. “Danny Hale is definitely one of the best. As the Executive Director, I was responsible for working with the board to make frequent decisions that affected the organization, and sometimes the sport itself. I could always count on Danny to share his honest thoughts and opinions based on his considerable experience as an OHV rider, advocate, and trail manager. His thoughts and ideas are always founded in fact, logic, and personal experiences. On the very rare occasion we didn’t agree on a subject, I could always count on Danny to understand, and help others understand that, just as in his position in Vermont, the board and I had to make choices based on what we thought was best for OHV recreation.


“Beyond his work as a NOHVCC board member, Danny absolutely deserves to be recognized for the amazing work he’s done in Vermont. Managing a program and trail system sounds like a dream job to many of us. And it is. That being said, it is a lot more work and much more difficult than most of us realize. I guarantee Danny works way more, for less money, than most people imagine. But he continues to do it because he knows how important it is to riders of Vermont. Danny gets far less recognition than he deserves, and I am honored to be one of the people asked to express my appreciation for all the wonderful work Danny has done for OHV recreation in Vermont and nationwide.”


NOHVCC Hall of Fame Inductee: Alex Bubb
Alex Bub Hall of Fame Class of 2017The third Hall of Fame inductee is Alex Bubb, a NOHVCC State Partner in Wisconsin. “Alex’s work in sound testing has saved riding areas from the actions of those who opposed them,” said Lew Schuler, NOHVCC Board Member and Executive Director of the CCC of Michigan. “He was instrumental in getting an off-highway motorcycle association and an OHV association started in Wisconsin, as well as laying the groundwork for recent legislation that officially recognized off-highway motorcycles (OHMs) as part of OHV recreation. Alex also operates a rider training center that offers dirt bike and ATV training to regional riders in the support of recreational interest. Alex has previously been awarded the NOHVCC Partner of the Year Award and the Persistence Award, and is overdue in being recognized in the NOHVCC Hall of Fame.”



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NOHVCC Presents Awards To 10 Outstanding Individuals And Organizations

by Dave Halsey, NOHVCC Contributing Writer


The National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council (NOHVCC) recognized 10 individuals and organizations at its Celebration & Awards Dinner, held August 26, 2017, during the NOHVCC Annual Conference, in Manchester, New Hampshire. The awards are presented in recognition of outstanding achievements that have advanced the NOHVCC mission: “Creating A Positive Future For OHV Recreation.”


Association Of The Year Award: Connecticut Off Road Enthusiasts Coalition (C.O.R.E.C.)
Dan Brown and Matt HouseC.O.R.E.C. has come immensely far in 2 years. From being a few individuals just looking for a place to ride, to a non-profit organization with over 2800 members. It is a recognized presence in the state of Connecticut, with a seat at the table with the Department of Energy & Environmental Protection, and the State Greenways Committee. C.O.R.E.C. is currently scouting routes on deep property to open Connecticut’s first and only public-land OHV riding area.


Club Of The Year: Summit County Off-Road Riders (SCORR)
As reported by SCORR: “Summit County is in the high-central Rocky Mountains, where there are many ski areas and many miles of old mining roads. It is not an OHV-friendly community. Many trails have been closed over the years, while we worked with local and federal government agencies to minimize the closures. The excellent news is that we are building multi-use motorized trails in two areas, in Breckenridge and Keystone Counties. Our members and board members have spent countless hours over many years, working with local agencies to build new trails. We legitimized a social MX track into a sustainable riding club. This model is now used by Summit County government for other special clubs in the area, like shooting and archery range clubs.”


Partner Of The Year Award: Mike Farmer
The Partner of the Year Award was presented to Mike Farmer, NOHVCC State Partner in Tennessee. “My years of working on OHV projects in Tennessee with Mike Farmer have been incredibly productive,” said Iva Michelle Russell, NOHVCC Associate State Partner and 2011 Partner of the Year. “Mike is a true force of nature. He is a great leader and team player. The best part of working with Mike is his dedication to implementing game plans, many times against all odds. He is not opposed to out-of-the-box solutions, and embraces the government red-tape process like a pit bull with a bone. The Doe Mountain Project is by far the best example of his tenacity and perseverance. How many people can say that a governor bought them a mountain in a two-year window of time with no precedent in place? Congratulations, Mike, on a well-deserved honor. You make Tennessee proud!”


Success Story Of The Year: St. John’s Rock ORV Trail and Campground
People lined up with large scissors for ribbon cutting ceremony to open St Johns OHV trail in MDIt took 6 years, but in late July, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources kept a promise to OHV users by dedicating a new trail. It’s called the St. John’s Rock ORV Trail and Campground, located on the Savage River State Forest, in western Maryland near the town of Finzel. It includes the state’s first-ever campsite designed to support trail riders, a main trail with spur loops open to ATVs and dirt bikes, and a rock crawl area for 4WD trucks.


No one had a larger smile on their face at the grand opening than Ken Kyler. A long-time motorcycle rider, OHV advocate, and NOHVCC Associate State Partner, he has been working toward this day ever since the State closed all the OHV “user” trails, basically old logging roads, in 2011. Since then, Kyler organized the Maryland OHV Alliance (MDOHVA), and held two NOHVCC Workshops to educate the DNR, contractors, and user groups on building and managing an OHV trail that would be both fun and sustainable. Kyler also worked tirelessly to energize the business leaders in western Maryland, who in turn energized their elected leaders, which led to increased traction with the DNR. “By staying persistent and professional, we moved the DNR from the stance of ‘there’s no way we are going to do it,’ to one of ‘we can do it and it can be done successfully.’ ”


The ‘Rob Perrin OHV Program Manager Of The Year Award’: Chris Gamache
Dan Kleen, Dennis Byrd, Chris Gamache, Brad Colin, and Duane TaylorTo honor a long-time OHV program manager, and in memory of him, the NOHVCC OHV Program Manager of the Year Award is now called the Rob Perrin Program OHV Program Manager of the Year Award. Rob Perrin was a long-time employee of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and a very important partner to NOHVCC. In recent years, Rob was the driving force behind the successful BLM National Motorized Recreation Strategy. NOHVCC has had the privilege of contributing information gathered from the public to inform statewide OHV recreation action plans that fall under the umbrella of this national project. Rob was equally driven to provide quality recreation for all user types, but never failed to ensure that OHV recreation was given a seat at the table. “Rob exemplified what a program manager should strive to be, and set a great example for other managers to follow,” said Duane Taylor, NOHVCC Executive Director.


The Rob Perrin Program Manager of the Year Award was presented to Chris Gamache. “Chris has been instrumental in the success of this annual conference,” said Dan Kleen, NOHVCC President. “In his role as chair of INOHVAA (International OHV Administrators Association), Chris has strengthened its partnership with NOHVCC. Having the INOHVAA conference in conjunction with the NOHVCC conference has been the key to strengthening both organizations. It has been a pleasure working with Chris, and I look forward to many more years of partnership.”


Volunteer of the Year Award: Robert Cline
The 2017 NOHVCC Volunteer of the Year Award goes to Robert Cline. “Robert has been all over the state of Arizona, attending meetings and participating in work days,” said Marc Hildesheim, NOHVCC Project Manager. “He belongs to seven OHV clubs, and works with many more. He was instrumental in the success of the NOHVCC public meetings in Arizona, by not only attending meetings, but also recruiting others to do so. Robert is currently applying for grant funding to provide OHV trail training for the OHV enthusiasts and land managers of Arizona.”


Perseverance Award: Jesse Neil Jr.
Jesse Neil Jr with awardThe NOHVCC Perseverance Award is presented “for showing steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in success.” This year’s award-winner is Jesse Neil Jr. “This Louisiana Associate State Partner has a history of taking on daunting challenges,” said Jim Barrett, NOHVCC Board Member and State Partner. “His current goal is to complete a 10-year old trail project that was stalled by opposition and seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Jesse approached the Forest Service to discuss slow progress of the Breezy Hill single-track trail. He learned that there was no budget to pay the NEPA cost, no budget for staff, no project sponsor to commit to long-term maintenance. And that the present Forest leadership was not bound by commitments of previous leadership to complete the trail. Undaunted and refusing to quit, Jesse researched and organized previous trail enthusiasts, revived and reorganized the Breezy Hill Dirt Riders, Inc., to act as project sponsor. He joined the state’s RTP (Recreational Trails Program) Advisory Committee, learned how to write RTP grants, while fighting mis-information, local hunting interests, county commissioners, equine users, two local Boy Scout troops, and a U.S. Congressman, to achieve his goal.”


Integrity Award: Angie Marek
Dan Kleen, Marc Hildesheim, Angie Marek, and Duane TaylorThis year, the Integrity Award was presented to Angie Marek, public relations chairperson and past president of the Pacific Northwest Four Wheel Drive Association (PNW4WDA). In presenting the award, Hildesheim said, “I have known Angie for 14 years, and during that time she has served as an officer of her local, state and regional OHV organizations. She has always conducted herself as you would hope than an officer of your club would. Her interactions with other clubs and land management agencies has been open, honest and friendly. Angie is the same kind, caring person at a Jeep race that she is at a Travel Plan meeting.”


Special Recognition Awards: Oksana Buhel and Bob Ramsay
Dan Kleen, Oksana Buhel, and Duane TaylorSpecial Recognition Awards were presented to Oksana Buhel and Bob Ramsey for their dedication to OHV recreation in Canada, and their tireless support of NOHVCC and its mission. Bob Ramsay is president of the Canadian OHV Distributors Council (COHV). Oksana Buhel is Manager of Rider Federations and Member Services, COHV.


Special Recognition Award: 21 Road Toad Initiative
Sign indication 21 road toad habitatThe Grand Mesa Jeep Club acknowledged both the importance of the habitat of a threatened toad species, as well as the recreational opportunities of the 21 Road in the Hunter Canyon area of Colorado. The club had explored the possibility of adopting the 21 Road many times in the past, with no success. After the current BLM Resource Management Plan was finalized, the club was able to adopt both the road and the toad.


To this end, the club has established the ‘21 Road Toad Initiative’ to help raise funds to help protect its sensitive habitats, by installation of posts and signage, as well as by educating the public. Labor for the project is donated by members of the Grand Mesa Jeep Club. In a NOHVCC newsletter article on the 21 Road Toad, club president Jeff Bates said, “My hope is that other clubs will see what we’re doing, start thinking outside the box, and establish a dialogue with other user groups. We have to try our best and, when we do, good things come easier.”



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Mixed Gear Bag

You know we have to be creative in our titles.  Miscellaneous is too normal and potpourri doesn't sound very rider like.  Below are up-coming events and other assorted items of interest. 

The 2017 annual conference is over.  Whew!  Time to work on the 2018 annual conference which will take place in Grand Rapids, MI on August 14 - 18, 2018.


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