Yes, it’s a fantastic year ahead.

As we roll into the New Year, I’m thankful for so much. Over the past two years, the collective stress of the pandemic has helped many of us evaluate what’s important. It’s been no different here at Norte.

We have experienced steep growth during this time. Our goal for this year isn’t only to go big — as we always do — but to hone our craft. In 2022, we will offer the best experience possible for everyone that connects with Norte.

We’ve learned that it doesn’t have to be fancy to be fantastic. For example, a used bike can lead to many adventures. Used bikes provide a powerful experience of joy, courage, and empowerment. Of course, we can still get excited about new wheels (that’s the power of N+1, after all), but our programs aren’t about that, nor is it what drives us. Norte makes a difference because we focus on the laughs, the skills, and the connections along the journey.

Everything Norte does will strengthen our connections and elevate our impact this year. At the Wheelhouse, John will keep our library fleet rolling and develop strong relationships with riders and volunteer mechanics. Also, the Grand Traverse Regional Kids’ Bike Library expanded rapidly in the last two years. We look forward to Lauren deepening the community connections the library creates in addition to engaging our valued volunteers.

Norte’s youth programs will continue to offer stellar opportunities to keep children moving and exploring. Troy and Abby will develop an adventurous curriculum that rewards our riders and our coaches from this year to the next. We are looking forward to the marvelous stories from riders in our Bikes for All, ABC, Summer Bike Camp, and more.

The stories and “Norte moments” make Gary and Aaron eager to share Norte news. They will use these stories to advance walk and roll initiatives in northern Michigan and encourage us to get out, keep moving, and engage with our community. And Wes and I will use them to build relationships and connect peoples’ passions with the power of their donations.

We’re at a special time for Norte, and this year is full of opportunity. If we compare Norte to a bike, we’re a well-tuned classic. It’s not fancy, but it doesn’t need to be fancy to be fantastic. We are strong because we work as a team with our volunteers, partners, and supporters from across northern Michigan.

As we flip the calendar, join us. Keep Norte rolling steady and strong as we settle in for the long ride ahead.

With Gratitude,

Jill Sill

P.S. It’s Winter Walk Wednesday time. Let us know if you want to take a walk together




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