Is Cuyuna having a positive economic impact? Ya Betcha!

Meranda Mosher, Deb Bieganski, Jamie Lynn Drewlow Ya Betcha Bar & Grill in Crosby, MN
The Ya Betcha Bar & Grill in Crosby, MN has become one of the local eating and drinking establishments to attract significant numbers of mountain bikers who come to ride the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Trails.

On Friday night before this weekend’s Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival, the IMBA Summit attendees headed there for drinks and dinner after the group ride (photo of the building is from March).

I met the family who owns and runs Ya Betcha, Deb Bieganski, and her two daughters, Jamie Lynn Drewlow and Meranda Mosher.  Like Maureen and Jim Christopher at the Heartland Kitchen Café, they’re quite pleased with the increase in business since the park opened last summer.  It’s pretty clear to me that their outgoing personalities have something to do with that. I will be back.

Cuyuna über volunteer John Schaubach wins the raffle for the Trek X-Caliber 29er

John Schaubach, CLMTB Crew volunteer Trek X-Caliber - raffle prize
John Schaubach, a fellow geezer and a volunteer with the CLMTB Crew (responsible for maintaining the Trout and Man Cage trails) was one of many local volunteers helping to put on the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival this weekend.  Evidently he’s been one of the many Cuyuna locals who has put in countless volunteer hours to help make the park a reality.

So a big cheer went out on Saturday night when his name was drawn for the raffle of the Trek X-Caliber 29er. Nice bike. I have one and love it.

The Griffins shred the red & haul home some Cuyuna MTB Fest time trial and hillclimb hardware

Griffin Wigley, Griffin Myslivecek Cuyuna MTB Fest maps: Time Trial, Hill Climb, Poker Run DSC01173 Griffin Myslivecek at the Cuyuna MTB Fest Griffin Myslivecek and his Cuyuna red tattoo
Yep, another mountain biker named Griffin was at the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival this weekend, Griffin Myslivecek, from Grand Rapids. He took 1st place in the Time Trial (Sport Class, 18-28 group) and the Hillclimb (Sport, 18-35). I took 2nd place in the Time Trial (Sport, 41-55) and 1st in the Hillclimb (Sport, 51+).  Griffin’s leg and I think other body parts were tattooed with Cuyuna red, a small price to pay For Glory. For Honor. Cuyuna.

Start of the Time Trial Start of the Hillclimb Cuyuna MTB Fest medal 
Classy looking medals: Ride Hard. Eat Dirt. Have Fun. And some nice prizes for the podium.

CLMTB Crew president Aaron Hautala does the US Airbag jump

In the waning hours of yesterday’s Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival, I reminded CLMTB Crew president Aaron Hautala that he said he was definitely going to do the big jump into the US Airbag that was set up in the center of Crosby. I thought he was going to play the I’m-too-busy-running-this-festival-to-have-time-for-that-kid-stuff card.  But I was wrong. He put on his game face and did it. Here’s the play-by-play in 9 photos:

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Aaron Hautala jump1 Aaron Hautala jump3

Here’s the 11-second video of Aaron’s jump:

Some of the faces of the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Crew

Jordan Vandal, John Schaubach, Dan Cruser, Aaron Hautala, Steve Weber, Jenny Smith, Nick Statz, Maya Statz  Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Crew logo

Many of the members of the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Crew, the local IMBA club, were at yesterday’s IMBA’s Great Lakes Summit. L to R: Jordan Vandal, John Schaubach, Dan Cruser, Aaron Hautala, Steve Weber, Jenny Smith, Nick Statz, Maya Statz (front).

Technically, DNR park manager Steve Weber is not a member of the Crew but I think they’ve adopted him.

Surprise discovery: Dan Cruser rode motorcycle trials years ago and competed at events on our UMTA club grounds near Northfield.

MTB skills, instruction, & community