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President's Message


GSW Welcomes You

Message from the GSW President

“Happy New Year” to all GSW members!

As we enter 2019, I wish to start my term as President by thanking all 2018 GSW Board and committee members for their services last year, many years, and in some cases decades! We concluded 2018 on a high-note with the very successful 45 th annual Seacoast Century Weekend under the guidance of Coordinator Donna Hepp, her fifth year in that position. She also stepped up to be the Acting VP to help keep the paperwork moving and chair various meetings. While she has stepped down from the 2019 Board, she will help with set-up of the 2019 Seacoast Century by assisting the new Coordinator Mark MacKenzie. That said, we have many other exciting plans for 2019.

New Board members for 2019 include VP Bill Hayne, Treasurer Dave Howard, Banquet & Awards Chair Molly Lunn Owen, plus two 2018 Board members stepped-up to assume second positions. Patty Tompkins is now our Recording Secretary while retaining her Publicity Chair slot and Joanna Bligh has assumed the Merchandise Chair position in addition to being our Social Secretary. Having “new faces” on the Board is great, but a shout-out must go to those who have been serving for decades. Hetty Andrews, Laurie Daley, Barbara Amos, Marguerite Orazi, and Judi Hull help keep the club going – and I thank all of you very much!

Since the annual Board election in October, work has been underway to line-up Treasurer Dave Howard with everything needed for that position, a fairly complex undertaking. The first full Board meeting will be held in January. Looking ahead on the “business side”, sustainability of the GSW has been discussed for over 12 years. Too much has been done by too few for too long. Having multiple people familiar with and able to assume critical roles is needed for redundancy and backups. Yes, I’ve been involved since the GSW was formed 48 years ago but this is not “Dave’s bike club” – it belongs to you, the members. Last year a “Sustainability Task Force” was formed by representatives of the GSW and BWANH Boards. The July 14th “NH Bike-Walk Summit” hosted jointly by BWANH and GSW highlighted what the NH bike-ped community would like to see happening. By working closer together in a “partnership” the two Boards are exploring ways to implement suggestions by utilizing economy of scale, sharing resources, updating systems, and basically taking care of seldom-seen “overhead” tasks with sustainability being the primary goal.

On the “fun side” of GSW activities for 2019, your Board is seeking to add two more weekend events, likely in North Woodstock NH in May and Wells Beach ME in August. With the Craftsbury Weekend in February, Vermont weekend in June, Lancaster in July, and the Seacoast Century in September, we will have six weekend “escapes” available to members and guests. In addition, more rail trail, off-road, and road rides are expected, many “popping-up” on our MeetUp calendar so don’t depend 100% on the printed ride schedule in Pedal Talk. More use of the GSW “Ride with GPS” account, route library, and new route submissions should allow members to choose routes to pedal anytime on their own or to help plan a group ride.

Bottom line, a lot is planned for the GSW in 2019 and we welcome new ideas, members, rides, and “fun stuff” in general. Again, this is your club and I look forward to helping to make 2019 a great cycling year for everyone!

Dave Topham
GSW President

Granite State Wheelmen