Volume 49, Issue #1, January 1, 2017
What's Happening
President's Message
Looking Forward to 2017
By Dave Abrecht
Happy New Year and welcome to a new year of SLOBC rides, events and activities. It is an honor to serve as your president. As I mentioned last month, the SLOBC will be undergoing a minor “make-over” this year:
  • fewer general meetings; 
  • more member social events;
  • more club-sponsored rides.  
The best way to keep informed about club rides, events and activities is to take the time to read the monthly SLO Coaster and the special announcements that are sent out to all of our members. I also encourage you to join our various email lists. Go to our Email Groups webpage to sign up for the various lists.

Start the year by joining Ride Coordinator Elaine McElmury, members and friends in Cambria for our annual New Year Day’s Ride up the coast. The ride begins at Shamel Park at 9:00 AM.

Questions or concerns? I encourage you to email me at president@slobc.org

A Huge Thank You to Will Benedict, president for the past three years, and Welcome to Dave Abrecht,  our new president.
Upcoming Events
New Year's Day Ride
Join us at  Shamel Park  at 9:00 AM on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017, for our annual ride up the coast to Ragged Point.  The ride is 44 miles round trip, but you may turn around at any point.  Back in Cambria we hope you'll meet us at the Main Street Grill for a no-host lunch.
2nd Annual Cook-Off
Hearty Soups and Stews

Grab your flannel shirts and join us for a fun-filled evening of great food and friendly competition.  You'll taste homemade soups and stews prepared by club member chefs and vote for your favorites. 

There will be a raffle for a variety of cozy hand-made flannel quilts to benefit Bike SLO County's Ride Well Program which provides refurbished bikes to deserving recipients.

SLOBC will provide everything you need for dinner - appetizers, non-alcoholic drinks, ice cream sundaes and place settings.  You may bring your own beer and wine.

RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED at this members-only event.  Space is limited and a waiting list will be kept when seating is closed.  Please respond with the names of the members in your group. You can also let us know if you are interested in cooking.
News & Notes
Bike SLO County
2016 Advocate of the Year
Dave Abrecht
At the 6th Annual Red Davis Celebration, Bike SLO County honored the example, the spirit, the dedication and the hard work of everyone who strives to make SLO County an even better place for bikes.
Congratulations Dave!
By Dave Abrecht
The start of a new year is a good time to recommit to safety when we roll out on our bikes. You can review cycling Best Practices in the Safety section of our website. At the very least, when your ride your bike and drive your car, adopt the following tips:

  • Obey the rules of road
  • Be visible; wear bright colored clothing and use warning lights
  • Be predictable
  • Be alert to your surroundings (lose the earbuds)
  • Be courteous
  • Obey the rules of the road
  • Respect the fact that cyclists have a legal right to the roadway
  • Drive defensively
  • Put your electronic gadget away and give your undivided attention to your driving
  • Be courteous
Greetings from Your 2017 Ride Coordinator
By Elaine McElmury
Hi All…  I’m excited to be the new SLOBC Ride Coordinator and am looking forward to adding some great new club rides this coming year!  We’re kicking off with the traditional New Year’s Day ride up the coast from Shamel Park. I’m adding some Sunday Winery rides – where we start from a winery and finish up with refreshments, music and wine-tasting (for those who are interested).  We’ll even have our own Breathalyzer for those who aren’t sure if they’re road-worthy to drive home.  And if you have some suggestions for a new ride, or improving our club rides, make sure you pass them on to me at


First Winery Ride

Join us Sunday, April 23 starting at J&J Cellars – located in one of the flattest areas of North County east of San Miguel. It should be green and beautiful with traffic almost non-existent on most of the roads we will travel.

The route will be a figure-8 so you can ride either 20 or 40 miles. Mark it on your calendar (with a 1-week raincheck).
SAG Partner for New Year’s Day Ride      
Would you like to join me in sagging for our NYD ride on Sunday, Jan. 1?  I’ll be driving my van up and down the coast checking to see if any of our club riders need help with a flat, a lift, or ….  If you’re good at changing flats and spotting riders in distress, I have an extra seat for you.  Your aid will be greatly appreciated (and thanked with a free lunch at the Main St. Grill in Cambria).  Let me know soon, as the ride is fast approaching.

Elaine McElmury, SLOBC Ride Coordinator
Home:  805-369-2273  or cell:  805-712-3641 
Strava & Ride With GPS
By Will Benedict
The SLOBC has set up a club group at both Strava and Ride With GPS. To join a club group you need a personal Strava or Ride With GPS account – both offer free personal accounts. Both Strava and Ride With GPS allow you to upload your rides to maintain a record of your cycling activities and have smartphone apps that can replace or connect with your GPS device (Garmin). 


The Strava club was started by a member some years ago and has recently been transferred to the club and updated. About 58 SLOBC members and friends are currently part of the group. The SLOBC-ORG Strava Club is a free and open public group that anyone can join. To join, use the same email and password that you use for your personal account. Once joined, it will be accessed under clubs on your personal Strava account. You can find the group at: https://www.strava.com/clubs/slobc-org.

Ride With GPS

The SLOBC has set up a new paid Ride With GPS Club site at https://ridewithgps.com/clubs/1096-san-luis-obispo-bicycle-club. If you go to the site, you will see that all of our favorite routes already reside there and you will have limited RWGPS output capabilities – it will reflect what the public can see and do. If you join the SLOBC Club you will have access to the following features:
  • Turn-by-turn navigation on the mobile app
  • Offline maps on the mobile app
  • Estimated Time
  • Advanced Turn Notifications
  • Print PDF Maps & Cue sheets 
To join the SLOBC Ride With GPS Club, you must first have or create a personal Ride With GPS account. Next, send an email to communications@slobc.org requesting the SLOBC Ride With GPS Club signup link. Use the link to join the club. Once joined, the club will show up on the Profile page of your personal account for easy access. 

As a Ride Leader, once you are member of the club you can request access to create and add new routes for your rides. 
Newsletter Changes
The 2017 SLO Coaster reflects changes in delivery, format and content. Starting with this issue, our newsletter will only be published in digital form, delivered through email and available from the home page of our website. The new format is designed to work both on computers and smart phones. Given that over half our members read the newsletter on their phones, this should make the experience more enjoyable.

The biggest change in content is the elimination of the variable weekly rides from the newsletter. They will continue to be published on the website and there is a link at the top of the newsletter that takes you to the current ride calendar. This allows us to maintain one source for all ride information that can be kept current.

Over the coming year we will be refining the new format and exploring content and organizational changes to improve the reading experience and keep you informed. Please email your thoughts and suggestions to newsletter-editor@slobc.org.
Bike SLO County's 
RideWell Program
Through its RideWell program, local nonprofit organization Bike SLO County provides  bikes, helmets, lights and bike education at no cost to some of SLO County’s neediest residents. Since August of 2016 they have provided 17 people with bicycles,  a transportation option that is sustainable, healthy, fun and inexpensive to maintain.
Volunteer  Recognition
Left to Right: Debbie Abrecht, Susan McTaggart, Joan Petersen, Judy Rutter, Cindee Varni
2017 President's Awards
By Will Benedict, President
I am delighted that my last act as President is to recognize members who have contributed in significant ways to the life of our club by presenting the 2016 President’s Awards. It is something that I take great pleasure in doing.
In 2015, the board recognized the need to create new opportunities for club members to gather together. What we did not anticipate was that a group of members would grab this idea and create the Chili Cook Off and the Apple Harvest Ride and Picnic. Furthermore, they are already planning events for 2017. Nothing happens in this club without members that are willing to work to make them happen.

This year’s President’s Awards go to the members of the  Meet & Greet Committee:  Debbie Abrecht,  Susan McTaggart,  Peg Heathcote,  Kathleen McHugh,  Joan Petersen,  Judy Rutter, and  Cindee Varni.

I want to thank each member of the committee for their significant contributions to the social life of the San Luis Obispo Bicycle Club. We enjoy our time together.
SLOBC General Meeting Minutes
Monday Club
1815 Monterey Street
December 2, 2016, 7:00 PM

Will Benedict, President 
Meeting was called to order at 7:00 PM.

Will Benedict thanked Susan McTaggart for organizing the December Potluck and her helpers: Michael Gille, Debbie Abrecht and Liz Curren.

A drawing was held and Mike Balster won a set of wheels donated by John Neugent.

Will Benedict acknowledged  Secretary, Gary Havas and  Programs Coordinator, Barry Rands who are leaving the SLOBC Board and thanked them for their service.
Will Benedict identified the newly elected 2017 Board Members and asked them to assemble for presentation to the membership:

President: Dave Abrecht
Vice President : Gill Pitt
Secretary: Jack Robison
Treasurer: Bill Martin
Ride Coordinator: Elaine McElmury
Membership Coordinator: Larry Rutter
Advocate: Dale Sutliff
Newsletter Editor: Susan McTaggart
Historian: Harvey Cohon
Safety Director: Ken Price
Public Relations: Will Benedict
Programs Coordinator: Vickie Backman
Director at Large: Mike Balster

The membership is fortunate to have their leadership. Thank you for serving.

Bill Martin, SLOBC Treasurer, present the 2017 budget proposed as published in the November SLO Coaster. He gave an overview of the budget process and described key issues and decisions that shaped the budget. He then asked if there were any questions.  
Bill then called for a motion to approve the proposed 2017 Budget. A motion was made  to approve the 2017 budget as presented. (MSC: Sutliff/Rutter)

Will Benedict presented the 2017 President's Awards to the  Meet & Greet Committee:  Debbie Abrecht,  Susan McTaggart,  Peg Heathcote,  Kathleen McHugh,  Joan Petersen,  Judy Rutter and  Cindee Varni.

Dave Abrecht presented Will Benedict a hand crafted Mexican Giraffe in thanks for three years of service as President of the SLOBC. 

Dave Abrecht presented a slide show that looked back on 2017.

The meeting was adjourned at approximately 7:00 PM.
SLOBC Board Minutes
Air Pollution Control District Auditorium
3433 Roberto Court, San Luis Obispo CA
December 29, 2016, 5:00 PM

Gary Havas, Secretary
Meeting was called to order at 5:01:36 pm.

Board Members Present: Will Benedict, Gary Havas, Susan McTaggart, Dave Abrecht, Larry Rutter, Dale Sutliff, Harvey Cohon, and Bill Martin. Absent: Ken Price, Barry Rands.

Minutes from the 2016 November Board Meeting were approved with modification. (MSC: Mctaggart/Cohon).

Treasurer’s Report. Bill Martin stated that he would have the entire 2016 SLOBC Budget available at the December Potluck function. Martin explained that the budget balanced because Bike SLO County declined requesting the $15,000 in matching funds for 2016. Other variations in the budget were explained and cautions offered for the future, especially if the Wildflower’s revenue remained under normal. Board members expressed concern that with funds much more restricted, would Club reserves be threatened?  Martin explained some ways to not go into reserves, and that he would specifically see to it that reserves remained untouched. Finally, Martin expressed his gratitude that Lighthouse Chair Benedict had done a superior job of managing the ride’s budget and hoped those successes would be transferred to the Wildflower in 2017.

Will Benedict announced that the creation of the Wildflower registration site was underway by Vickie Backman and that two changes were proposed for 2017 – that registration open December 4, 2016 and there be an early and late registration fee that increased on January 21, 2017. After some discussion, a motion was made that an experiment with an earlier ride registration date an and early registration fee of $75 to increase to $85 as proposed. (MSC: Rutter/McTaggart)

Dave Abrecht opened discussion of the Old Board/New Board Dinner.  He began with noting a few early-year dates and explained the Calendar link for the complete SLOBC calendar. Abrecht then questioned if the dinner should be offered. General discussion concluded that this more social event should be included.

Will Benedict explained Club involvement with STRAVA and Ride With GPS.  Funding is required to participate, and specifics of who could participate and through what means were discussed. The Board accepted this plan to include these two services for Club enrichment.

Benedict then suggested that with the Club meetings changing in nature, the person or crews presenting any meeting should assign duties of providing refreshments and name tags.

Finally, Benedict revisited the issue of Standing Jobs (for club functions typically outside either of the two fundraising rides). Susan Mctaggart agreed to draft a letter to go to those already in these positions to thank them and encourage ongoing commitment for the board’s consideration.

In final discussion, Bill Martin asked if the Budget should be posted in the SLO Coaster.  The Board decided that something brief should be drafted by the treasurer for inclusion in the newsletter each month.

The meeting adjourned at approximately 6:21:00 pm.
Treasurer's Report
Bill Martin, Treasurer
As of the middle of December the club has $149,320.00 in our operations checking account, $2,449.75 in our PayPal account, and $63,379.00 in a reserve account. Our net income up to this point (total income minus total expenses) is $3,753.67.

If you would like to receive a complete copy of the club’s end-of-year financial statements, please email me at treasurer@slobc.org. Also, if you would like to be put on an email list to receive the club’s financial statements at the end of each month, let me know and I will put you on the mailing list.
SLO Coaster

The SLO Coaster is the monthly newsletter of the San Luis Obispo Bicycle Club. Use   the Newsletter Signup Form to subscribe.

All articles, letters, stories of bicycling experiences, appropriate classified ads, artwork etc, are welcome. Each article is the opinion of its author and does not necessarily represent the opinion or endorsement of the SLOBC or editor.
Submittal Guidelines

All materials are due no later than 
8:00 a.m. on the 15th of each month.
Nothing will be accepted verbally. 
The editor reserves the right to edit or reject material. 

All materials should be emailed to:  newsletter-editor@slobc.org.  
Submittal guidelines are found at: