At our annual meeting, a representative of Bellevue’s Park’s Department (you read that right, a city official attended our meeting) asked THOR if we would attend a trail clean up day being put on by an arbor group who had recently written a not-so-favorable review of how mountain bikers ruin the trails.
Needless to say, we responded kindly to the request with over 20 THOR and GOATZ volunteers, the Tree Board was impressed with the turnout, open to the discussions we had with them about legitimate and responsible use (including erosion mitigation techniques), and now consider them to be “friends of THOR”. They even went so far as to submit the following Letter to the Editor of the Bellevue Leader:
We’d like to thank everyone who helped with the Jewel Park spring cleanup March 19th. Although the weather was far from ideal, nearly 30 enthusiastic volunteers showed up and worked hard…Special thanks to members of two trail groups, THOR (Trails Have Our Respect) and GOATZ (Greater Omaha Area Trail Runnerz) who tackled cleaning up some of the most challenging hills of the park. The cleanup was a big success and demonstrated how much can be accomplished when volunteer residents and friends of the park work together with the city’s Parks Department. Bellevue has many wonderful parks, but with its rugged hills and wooded natural beauty, Jewell Park is truly a “jewel” in our parks system. And now thanks to all who dug in and cleaned it up, it looks better than ever!