Club Name: Oregon Motorcycle Riders Association (OMRA)
Year Founded: 1972
Who Founded: A small group of local riders who spent most of their time building and maintaining some of Oregon's oldest most revered trails. Billy Toman, Dennis Bershaw, and a few others. Billy is still board member who was instrumental in the formation of the organization.
Home city: Tualatin, Oregon
Club Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Member dues: $15.00 Annual membership
1. How is OMRA different from a traditional Motorcycle Club?
The Oregon Motorcycle Riders Association is the statewide representative of all motorcycle, ATV and Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) enthusiasts, clubs, associations and business. The OMRA leads the advocacy, representative, safety and competition areas of the sport for the State of Oregon.
2. So, is OMRA more like a lobbying group on behalf of riders?
Good question, the OMRA is not a lobbying group however it is the representative and support group for all local and national agency and legislative needs. When the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management or Law Enforcement agencies have a question or a need, they call the OMRA. We may direct them to a more local group and guide the process, but we are the authority.
One very important role we play is to stand watch over our ATV fund and ensure any attempts to access it are for the strict purpose of OHV use. We literally check legislative action every day to protect our citizens' riding rights and privileges.
3. What's been the club's biggest legislative victory?
Our most recent greatest victory is curbing a proposal to require large license plates on all vehicles accessing trails in Oregon's OHV network. This would cost millions of dollars and provide no reasonable benefit.
Previously we were able to curb legislation requiring all riders to be over the age of 15 and complete hands-on "training" to ride on public lands. Today's online and hands-on safety certification program is a result of working to a solution where parents and riders take the responsibility for safe training instead of an agency. Another great victory was working with the dune rider groups to guide them successfully to keep access open to much needed areas.
4. What do you think is the club's biggest contribution to the sport?
Our biggest contribution to the sport is our leadership in professional advocacy and safety certification. Through our move from our more "dirt rider" roots to the level we are today we are making significant gains in the image and respect for our sport.
Last year the National Off Highway Vehicle Conservation Council named the OMRA the National Association of the Year and recognized the OMRA for its leadership in the motorcycle and OHV community.
5. Does OMRA sanction/host any rides?
OMRA hosts an annual fundraising ride for our costly legislative efforts. We also host our annual fundraising and awards banquet every February when more than 200 riders and family members come celebrate a great year of riding and fun.
We sanction virtually every off-road event throughout the state. We sanction more than 50 events including Cross Country, ISDE, GP, Dual sport and Poker Run events. We expect to bring a national ISDE Qualifier back to Oregon in the next 18 months. We also facilitate more than 50 Oregon State Youth Safety and Education Program (YSEP) certifications sessions a year at greatly reduced rates for parents of our future riders.
6. Does OMRA exist primarily for off-roaders?
The OMRA exists for all motorcycle, ATV and OHV riders. Our membership rides on pavement, dirt, rocks, sand and even on the snow. They ride on two or four wheels. In the winter some even ride on tracks. Without the riders of Oregon we would not exist. We are currently looking for a small group of individuals to represent just street riding and/or adventure riding. Give us a call or drop us an email.
7. Why "ride" Oregon?
Oregon is one of the most pro OHV states in the nation. The state is full of excellent opportunities to ride, kick back, share time with family and friends, and enjoy great scenery, and if you're lucky some great weather!
8. Why should another club or individual join OMRA?
Other clubs, associations and business should join the OMRA to put every effort and vote behind one sharp tip of our force. Most groups have a representative within our team, they gain experience, knowledge and access to the resources we have. Our representatives are members of the top resource committees in the nation, the NOHVCC, AMA and others. Our legislative committee is gaining ground for the riders, clubs and businesses of Oregon every day. Merely joining to support this group will make a difference the next time you ride!
We are experts in obtaining grants for trails and trail maintenance and can show others how to make a difference in their area. We work hard so you can ride. If people can ride, they will join their local clubs and more people joining local clubs supports local needs and businesses.
For businesses, we work hard so you can sell bikes and equipment in the future. Join in the fun, help protect, support and advocate for the sport we love. Help build a future for our kids to enjoy tomorrow!
Written By: AndrewT