March 2021 Newsletter

March 2021 Newsletter

A Message from Wayne Vandersteen, President

Good day fellow snowmobilers and Snopass holders!
At the beginning of March, we looked outside and slowly watched our trails disappear in about 3 days, mostly everything south of the 53rd parallel. On March 5th, our COVID-19 cases were reduced and our warm-up shelters were allowed to open but at that point, most of our trails were closing.
It was a struggling year for all of us. As a board, Snoman met virtually and that has its challenges with poor internet and cell coverage in some parts of the province. However, we worked through it and got the work of the board accomplished.
At this time, Snoman is commencing planning for the 10th Annual Congress at the Victoria Inn in Brandon scheduled for November 12 & 13, 2021. We have a drop-dead date of July 1st to decide if it can go ahead due to COVID.
While we had a rather short season with much of the southwest corner of the province with no trails open, those that did get out enjoyed the riding. Let’s hope for an earlier start to the season next year and a longer stint of trail riding.
Congratulations to Christine Logan on winning the Snoman Winner’s Choice Raffle. Her son Jason, wife Karley and their two children are a very avid snowmobile family so they're going to make good use of the snowmobile.
A special thank you to our groomer operators and all of our snowmobile club volunteers who do all of the signing and maintenance on our trail network. Without them, the system would not work. Also, a special thank you to our farmers and landowners who let us use their property for our trail system.
I’d like to say a big thank you to all of our Corporate Rider Partners that provide funding for our clubs, including the installation of kiosks throughout our trail network.
Have a safe summer and let’s keep our fingers crossed that we can return to some sense of normalcy sooner rather than later.

Congratulations to Christine Logan for winning the Winner's Choice Raffle. Christine chose the Polaris sled. Pictured Wayne Vandersteen (l), the Logan family, and Chris Nicholson of Polaris Canada (r).

Club News

Signs, Signs, Everywhere There’s Signs…
by Yvonne Rideout

Not the case this season! This year several of our clubs had numerous signs go missing and this is a huge cost for the volunteer clubs. When club volunteers went out to collect the signs, somebody had already helped themselves to the signs. This happens during the season as well. In addition to the cost, there is a huge safety issue when somebody removes signs from the groomed trails. The loss of caution and stop signs could lead to an accident and possibly even loss of a life. A reminder that the fine for removing a sign is $298. Is that sign really worth it to you?

by Jason Nickel
Log Cabin Riders

A lot of things have changed in our world now but at least one thing hasn’t. When it snows we go
 snowmobiling!! That’s one thing the virus could not take away from us. Another thing that hasn’t changed is the enthusiasm of our club members. The late start to our season gave us a chance to get some more cleanup done from last year’s storm. While we were out there we pulled out some nasty big stones as well. We also had time to build a woodshed on our club’s property and fill it with wood for the shelters. Hopefully, next year we can open the shelters for the entire season. 
Once the snow did come, we actually did quite a bit of grooming and the trails were in very good shape for several weeks.
Let’s hope next year the snow comes earlier and lasts longer and we will see you on the trails. Have a safe summer!

Why a New Shop?
by Mitch Gobeil
South East Sno-Riders

About 30 years ago, when the South East SnoRiders snowmobile club began, it operated in a shop that was approximately 20’ X 20’ on property that belonged to the Woodridge Community Club, rent free.  As we acquired bigger and more equipment, an addition was made to the shop to double its size to about a 20’ X 40’ heated shop. Later another addition was made, a cold storage side, another 20’ X 40’. The S.E.S.R. operated in that shop for a number of years. It was tight quarters and not easy, but doable with some equipment outside.  In 2018, the board decided the club should purchase the approximate 1.5 acres we had been operating on. This was accomplished in 2019; but as the equipment we required to maintain and groom trails grew, it was evident that we needed a bigger shop.
In early 2020, a building committee of 4 board members was created with a mandate to provide a recommendation to the board as to what a new shop and boardroom should look like along with a projected building cost. The committee made its recommendations to the board during the summer of 2020. After carefully reviewing club finances and making an application for a Building Sustainable Communities Grant the board took the bold step (not knowing if they would be successful with the grant application) to build the shop and the club’s building committee would act as the general contractor. This was not an easy decision, but one that the board felt was necessary.
In the fall of 2020, as we were in the process of hiring contractors, we were advised that our grant application had been successful and this made everyone breathe a little easier. With everyone working together to make sure costs were kept to a minimum, not only by monitoring all expenses, but also, by agreeing to avail of used appliances, kitchen cabinets and furniture, construction of the new groomer shop was completed in early January 2021. Due to the late start of the snowmobile season, we were able to use the new shop this year and it was great. It will go a long way to make it easier for the volunteers to provide great trails for snowmobilers to use.

The South East SnoRiders have held their board meetings in a variety of venues over the years such as board members’ homes, people’s places of business, the Woodridge C.C., etc. Now, once the Manitoba Government’s Public Health Orders permit it, we will be able to have our board meetings in our own facility constructed for that purpose.
A special thank you to the building committee and the entire board of the South East SnoRiders for having the desire to make this a reality. 

Snoman wishes to thank the snowmobile clubs for their contributions to our newsletter, and we look forward to publishing their stories next season!

Be Better - Volunteer!

As this riding season winds down, we’ll have a few months to re-charge our batteries and dream about the trails we’ll ride next year. At the same time, we’d like you to consider how you could contribute to next year’s trail riding experience by becoming a volunteer! It takes resources and countless hours to prepare and maintain 12,000+ kilometers of snowmobile trails, and clubs are always looking for help. There are many roles you could play, from fundraising and planning events, to grooming and signing trails, to chopping wood and shelter maintenance. Not only will you be helping out the clubs, but you’ll benefit on a personal level too! Be part of something that not only promotes general well-being and increases your self-confidence, but also generates fun and new friendships! Contact the Snoman office and we can connect you with a club, or contact a club directly! You’ll be better for it.

Snoman Scholarship Available

Did you know that Snoman Inc. has a scholarship available? If you or someone you know is a graduating high school student planning to or attending a post-secondary school, and is a snowmobile club member within one of the Snoman regions, encourage them to apply! Additional scholarships may be offered by some of the regions as well. Applications and additional information can be found by clicking the button below. 
Scholarship Information

2020-2021 Snoman Excellence Awards Nominations

As we approach the end of the riding season, it's time to consider nominations for the Snoman Excellence Awards. Is there an individual, a snowmobile club, association or business that you think deserves to be recognized for their contributions to snowmobiling? Awards are given in the following categories:

  • Outstanding Organized Snowmobile-Related Company
  • Outstanding Snowmobile Dealership
  • Outstanding Snowmobiler
  • Outstanding Groomer Operator
  • Outstanding Snowmobile Family
  • Outstanding Snowmobile Club
  • Outstanding Support by a Non-Snowmobile Related Business
  • Outstanding Youth Contribution Towards the Continued Development of Family Snowmobiling

We're accepting nominations from now until the end of June, so get them in! Click here for more information and to access the nomination form.