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POSTED ON JAN 25 2019

Anchorage’s Magical Trails

Anchorage, AK – Singletrack Advocates (STA) is a group of mountain bikers and recreationalists working with the community to preserve, maintain, and create singletrack mountain biking trails in Anchorage. Since 2004, STA has created more than 25 miles of singletrack at Kincaid and Hillside Parks. STA has also raised hundreds of thousands of dollars, organized hundreds of volunteers, and motivated the Anchorage community to build and maintain those singletrack trails.

Mad Dog’s Aurora Hablett designed the wrap for Singletrack Advocates’ equipment trailer.

Many in Anchorage – including several who regularly use the singletrack trails – mistakenly believe that the city or state builds and maintains these bikeways. STA is an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit that plans, builds, and maintains the trails entirely with community donations and memberships, a volunteer staff, and a dedicated pool of volunteer laborers.

Photos for the wrap were donated by local photographers and singletrack enthusiasts Cody Gauer and Ryan Greeff.

In 2008, STA built eight miles of singletrack trails at Hillside. In 2011, STA built nine miles of trail at Kincaid Park, with another seven miles completed in 2014.

Headlines were meant to express fun but subtly suggest volunteerism.

Singletrack Advocates was fortunate enough to procure a trailer to haul tools and equipment to trailside construction sites, and asked Mad Dog to help create a wrap for the vehicle to aid in marketing – but also to let viewers know that STA volunteers create some of their favorite biking trails, and suggest to viewers that they could join the efforts by becoming members or volunteering for future projects.

We settled on a cheeky tone for the message – one that reflected the playful and energetic nature of singletrack biking, but still appealed emotionally to community members that might use and enjoy the trails without ever considering the work involved in creating and maintaining them. The lighthearted headlines gently suggest the possibility of volunteering or contributing to these well-loved community assets, without a hard sell.

[L] STA video shows some of their dynamic trails at Kincaid Park.  [R] Project contractor Jon Underwood makes the initial cut for a trail bench on a trail in progress.

Singletrack Advocates volunteers are busy every summer building and maintaining trails.

The graphics for the trailer needed to meet several goals: to represent trail-building as a community effort; to demonstrate trail-building as a rewarding social activity; to show off the beautiful finished trails and the riders enjoying them; and to identify volunteer engagement as crucial to developing “rad” trails.

“I like that the headlines are direct, fun, and stir emotion, while the message is down to earth and relatable,” said STA founder Janice Tower. “The trailer acts as mobile billboards that let us tell our story. ‘Hey, these trails are a labor of love, built by volunteers who love biking. Come join us. Be part of our community.’ We are definitely proud of our contributions to Anchorage and the biking community, and we’re happy to share that pride with as many volunteers and members as we can.”

For more information about the program, visit www.singletrackadvocates.org.


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