Charles

 What started as a New Year ’s Eve discussion on the difficulties finding funding for mountain bike trails and the similar issues with the film/arts community, has led to a successful South Australian crowd funded mountain bike trails project. Charles from the Human Projectiles tells the story.  

Over the past few years, many members of the Human Projectiles MTB club had received from other riders, positive feedback on the trails the club has built at Fox Creek MTB Park. In many of those casual discussions trackside, people wished there was an easy way for them to throw in a few dollars to help make Fox Creek even better. The Fox Creek MTB trails crowd funding project was the result; it enabled anybody that wanted to, an easy way to pitch some money in. The concept was easy and the way to pledge donation was easy, but there was a lot of background work by many people to pull it all together.

 

Single track

This ranged from Human Projectile meetings to define the scope of the work, in consultation with the Forestry department “Master Plan” (a blueprint for Fox Creek MTB park Development), to liaising with BikeSA, Inside Line and others to ensure all involved parties were onboard with the concept. The four week campaign started well, quickly racing up through the lower numbers. Along the way we reviewed and changed the promotional poster, the first one had looked good on the computer but because the background picture was forest, kind of disappeared amongst the forest at Fox Creek. With some good design advice from a few people (you know who you are) a freshly redesigned poster from Julian at BikeSA was quickly distributed all over Fox Creek MTB Park, and the message was much clearer.

The project seemed to stall a little just past halfway financially and on the clock. Fortuitously Specialized Bikes had a “come and try” weekend 10 days out from the end of the project, so I contacted Specialized to see if they minded us piggy backing their show, to which the reply was , “That sounds awesome, can we contribute?” and the important question “will there be sausages?”.

Anderson Hill Winery not only supplied the rewards wine for the project but lent us their marquee for the weekend, we were ready to go. The top carpark was packed Saturday and Sunday, as well as the bottom carpark for the Inside Line preseason day, so it was a little manic handing out flyers and talking up the project with riders. The Foxy Creakers ( ladies MTB group), cooked up a sausage storm, handing them out for free in return for taking a flyer and listening to them explain the project, not a single sausage was left. Most of us managed to get a try on one of the bikes available, and in addition to a quiet one at Anderson Hill at the end of the day, the weekend was well spent. It was now a case of more social media promotion, word of mouth and trying not to check the total too often.

According to Crowd funding promotional information, the last few days is always when many people finally decide to contribute. With our project sitting tantalizingly short a few days out, the expected flow of contributions started to happen. A regular stream of tens, fifties, hundreds and one or two larger contributions saw us soar past the goal with a final amount of $20,095. A big thank you to anybody who helped in any way, and of course to everybody who contributed their hard earned cash.

The results will be there for everybody to enjoy as the year progresses, and Fox Creek MTB Park will be even better than it is today.

You can read more about the crowdfunding campaign here