For a small Park with big ambitions, feedback from visitors and regulars helps and encourages us towards making it even better.
From the start, we set out to create a family-friendly mountain biking environment. That meant first establishing a circuit of easy-grade trails, before extending into a range of intermediate and advanced-grade tracks. Every year, we plan our projects based on what we feel will add to the overall Park experience, both for beginner riders and those looking for more of a challenge.
The support we get from local businesses through sponsorship goes a long way towards funding much of this work.
Together with on-going support from the Kaiteriteri Recreation Reserve Board, advertising, map sales and collections from our donation box, we're able to avoid the user-fees that are increasingly appearing elsewhere around the country.
But building tracks, especially on Kaiteriteri's steep, gully-riven slopes, is an expensive undertaking. It's hard on machinery and, when we hit rock, it gets even harder. Progress can slow from 40-50m a day to 2m a day and that can make a mess of even the best budgeting!
So when individuals and businesses approach us saying they'd like to show their appreciation for what we're doing with a substantial donation, it can sometimes mean the difference between keeping at it or suspending operations.
Andrew Taylor is one such individual. Based in Wellington, he and his wife, Pip, have a bolt hole in Little Kaiteriteri and, with their daughter, love getting into the Park on their bikes when in residence. Like many others, they know they're unlikely to make it to a working bee so decided to make a $10,000 donation to the Park. Yes, that's $10,000!
Shortly after Andrew's approach, Bruce Miller of Motueka's New World supermarket, also got in touch. New World already sponsor Remedy and provide the Sunday morning treats for our working bee volunteers. But Bruce, a regular Park user, wanted to also show his personal appreciation with a $2000 donation!
Such shows of support not only give those of us on the committee a huge lift in encouragement that we're creating something that is truly of value in the community - in very practical terms, it means our digger track-building can go on when our budget is otherwise exhausted.
At the moment, the track that is gobbling up most of our funds is... unsurprisingly, Jaws. So, when we eventually emerge from the torturous terrain that has tested us on so many levels and open up the whole length of this track for business, we hope Andrew and Bruce and their families get a special buzz out of riding it!
Marty Clark & Bruce Nelson designed it for us some time back and we've been itching to get started ever since.
Local builder Roger Kenning worked up our timber needs and offered to oversee its construction once we had materials in place.
Step forward Brent Steinmetz of Prime Pine Ltd, the Little Sydney Valley-based sawmill. Another Park fan who laments not being able to make it to working bees, Brent priced up our order and then knocked $1000 off the price as his way of making a contribution.
It has now been treated and delivered to site so look out on our Facebook page for the shortly upcoming notification of the day when we'll assemble and turn this design into a reality!
Coming up, we have the official opening of the Great Taste Trail's coastal section on October 11.
The final leg of this route brings riders into the Park and onto Easy Rider.
Since the opening of the cycle underpass as part of the Turners Bluff road realignment, we're already seeing greatly increased numbers of riders using Easy Rider.
Feedback from many is that they're loving the completely different environment and we can imagine that the shade of the forest will be especially welcomed on a hot day.
Not to mention the ice-cream or (ginger)beer when you emerge onto the beach :)
It promises to be a fun day so, if you haven't got round to it yet, oil your chain and get you and your bike to Motueka for the 9.00am start...
This is being run - or is that run/biked? - by the Nelson Tri Club to see how popular the Park might be as a venue for future events.
If you think that this is something you'd like to give a crack, you can turn up on the morning and sign on.
As you can see, there are lots of options to cater for first-timers up to seasoned veterans in almost any combination you want to throw together.
And the best bit is, you get to run the tracks without meeting any bikers coming the other way!
Remember to 'Like' our Facebook page (linked in the sidebar) to keep abreast of what's happening in the Park, including news of the Nelson mum and children who did a 3 day cycle-tour to Kaiteriteri, who our track inspector is and where you can stand underneath 500 yr old rimu...