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Press Release – MORCA

Mountain Bikers Support Designation of New National Monument

MARINA, CA (April 21, 2012) – The Monterey Off-Road Cycling Association (MORCA) a chapter of the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) announces their support for President Obama’s designation of Fort Ord Soldiers National Monument in Monterey County, California. The permanent protection of the federally owned lands at Fort Ord ensures that the families from Monterey County and around the country can continue to use the more than 86 miles of trails for mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding and other recreational activities.

Cycling is a growing force in the Monterey economy for both visitors and locals. “Fort Ord is a biker’s paradise,” said Darius Rike, President of MORCA. “Having the public lands as open space has benefited our community by bringing in nationally-recognized outdoor events, including the Sea Otter Classic, the largest biking event in the country. Tens of thousands of people visit the public lands at Fort Ord each year, contributing $15-$17 million to our local economy every year.”

Economic studies have shown that protected public lands such as national monuments can play an important economic role for local communities. Visitation, tourism and jobs related to nearby public lands annually contribute billions to regional economies while creating hundreds of thousands of private sector jobs.

“As a company of riders, it is important for us to be in a community where our staff and their families can blaze trails close to home. Having Fort Ord protected a national monument will ensure that future generations will also have the benefit of the outdoors close at hand. It’s not only where we recreate, it’s also where we craft the designs for the equipment we make, so protecting our federal lands is very important to me,” says Daniel Emerson, CEO for Light and Motion.

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Contact:     Gary Courtright,  gacourtright@sbcglobal.net

MORCA is an organized voice for responsible mountain biking in Monterey County. We accomplish this by advocating for mountain bike trail access, maintaining area trails, and sharing good will with other trail users.
We are involved in mountain biking advocacy at all levels of the community.
http://www.morcamtb.org


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