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Bike give-away contest will boost membership.

Yantha Cycles in Pembroke has offered a kid's mountain bike to raffle off to boost OVCATA membership
Yantha Cycles in Pembroke has offered a kid's mountain bike to raffle off to boost OVCATA membership

Spring is around the corner and OVCATA has been getting ready over the winter for its approach. Here are some of the great things on the go:

1)   Join OVCATA / WIN A BIKE. We've accomplished amazing things in our two years, and it's all because of membership. The politicians and public servants tell us that our numbers matter a great deal to them. So at OVCATA, we're doing all we can to boost our numbers - now over 220. One way we hope will boost membership is a contest. Until Labour Day, 2018, all new OVCATA members and all existing members who fill out an entry form have a chance to win a brand new Raleigh kid's mountain bike from Yantha Cycle worth $400, and other cool prizes. To enter click here. Please share!

2) Silver Chain Challenge gets major boost. OVCATA is preparing for the annual Silver Chain Challenge - that friendly competition between Renfrew and Lanark Counties to see whose residents can log the most klicks cycling or walking in the month of June. This year, Renfrew County Emergency Services, which has long been a participant in the Silver Chain Challenge, is giving it a major boost with staffing and website support. Organizers are looking into revising the website to enable organizations, school classes or other groups to sign up collectively.

3) Silver Chain Challenge celebrations to include "Meet Your Trail" parties on the new Algonquin Trail (former CP Rail line). Major efforts are underway to make the new Algonquin Trail ride-able as soon as possible. Snowmobile organizations have put thousands of dollars worth of construction efforts into the former rail line, and Renfrew County staff are working hard to make as much of it as possible useable soon. It's a big job, but they hope to have several large sections ready for June. OVCATA will be working with the County to promote this achievement, and we hope to organize one or more "Meet Your Trail" parties to involve the public. If you have ideas for ways to get people out and onto the new trail, please share them with us by email - info AT ovcata.ca.

4) Join the Tour de Whitewater, July 7, 2018 - OVCATA is pleased to announce that it will be a main partner and beneficiary of the Second Annual Tour de Whitewater in Westmeath, ON. Last year's event attracted 300 rider. This year, organizers hope for 500 taking part in a variety of rides of various distances on some of the area's best cycle routes. Details are on Facebook and Blogspot.  Let us know by email - info AT ovcata.ca.- if you'd like to volunteer with OVCATA at the event by replying to this email.

5) The first-ever Renfrew County Bike Map is now available FREE to OVCATA members. The Ottawa Valley Travel Association (OVTA) has generously offered to send out copies of its first-ever bike map free to all OVCATA members. If you want one, please send a request by email to by email to info AT ovcata.ca., including your postal address.

6) Anyone can attend an OVCATA Board meeting. The next one is at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 15, in the Whitewater Region Council Chamber. You are welcome to come and get involved.

7) Please support OVCATA. We're working hard for you and getting a lot of good things done. We've helped create momentum for the Algonquin Trail and a lot of new hard shoulders on area roads. A small donation made by credit card or Paypal can help move the work forward.

8) Reminder: Please join and share OVCATA's Facebook page. It's constantly being updated.

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Cycling Safety Tips

Check out the MTO's illustrated guides for adults and kids on staying alive on a bike.

Cycling skills
Young cyclist guide

OVCATA is a voice for cyclists and all active transportation enthusiasts in the Ottawa Valley, advocating for safety and good conditions, bringing people together, and encouraging participation. Here are some of the things we accomplished in our first year.

2017-2018 directors of OVCATA

Co-chairs: Ish Theilheimer (Golden Lake)
Patricia Krose (Whitewater Region)
Secretary: Ron Moss (Pembroke)
Treasurer: Debbie Fiebig (Renfrew)
Members at large:
Damien McCarthy (Petawawa)
Bob Peltzer (Bonnechere Valley)
Eric Price (Pembroke)
Greg Ellis (Maberly, Lanark County)
Robert Howe of Barrys Bay provides legal advice and support.