SBT GRVL backs Routt County nonprofit groups |

SBT GRVL backs Routt County nonprofit groups

Cyclists ride on Routt County Road 44 during the inaugural SBT GRVL race on Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019.
Shelby Reardon/Steamboat Pilot & Today

Billed as a world-class gravel race on some of earth’s greatest gravel roads, SBT GRVL takes pride in giving back too.

The annual bike race on gravel roads will return to Steamboat Springs on Aug. 14. The longest course will take riders across 142 miles with more than 100 miles on gravel. While the lineup is meant to be challenging, SBT GRVL also has a softer side, reporting donating tens of thousands of dollars to nonprofit organizations since 2019.

“When we founded SBT GRVL, we knew that we wanted to give back to the riders, give back to causes that we believe in, and invest heavily in our community,” founder Amy Charity said in a statement.

“We are so lucky to live in Steamboat Springs where we are surrounded by endless miles of gravel throughout Routt County, and also have this incredible hometown that is used to accommodating thousands of people,” Charity continued. “We are so lucky to be able to share this community with people from all over the world, and that is why we’ve decided to give back to different advocacy causes local here in Steamboat and give back to the community in Steamboat by supporting local businesses.”

According to SBT GRVL, the group gave $11,000 in 2019. The following year, that number jumped to $50,000 in donations, largely a result of SBT VRTL, a virtual offering during the pandemic’s live event cancelations.

In 2021, the group reported another $8,000 in donations to local advocacy partners, and SBT GRVL projects it will give about the same amount this year, which would bring the group’s charitable giving to $77,000 over four years.

SBT GRVL’s donations have gone to local nonprofits such as the Boys and Girls Clubs of Northwest Colorado, NICA’s GRIT program focused on getting girls riding, and People for Bikes.

“Each one kind of has their own specific value set that we lean toward,” said Greer Van Dyck, SBT GRVL’s community relations director, about why race organizers enjoy extending financial support to local nonprofits.

“It’s kind of like that all-ships-rise-together mentality,” she said. “Each advocacy partner just has their own unique way that they play with us and what they mean to us.”

Other local nonprofits that have benefited from SBT GRVL are Routt County Riders ($2,000 in 2021), the Steamboat Spring Winter Sports Club ($3,000 in 2019), Old Town Hot Springs ($2,500 in 2022), Boulder Fire Relief ($500), Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust ($250 in 2021) and Routt County United Way ($250).

As an example, Van Dyck applauded Routt County Riders’ efforts to promote local trails and good stewardship of those trails, adding that Routt County Riders’ work closely aligns with the same values SBT GRVL wants to promote.

The Boys and Girls Clubs received $3,000 in 2019 and $2,000 in 2021. Speaking about the Boys and Girls Clubs, Van Dyck said SBT GRVL especially enjoys the clubs’ programs built around getting children on bicycles.

Many of the gravel roads used on race day pass through places where ranchers are at work with their livestock, and SBT GRVL also extends support to the Community Agriculture Alliance. The Community Agriculture Alliance received $5,000 in 2019 and $1,500 in 2021, plus $1,500 in local food purchases for SBT GRVL’s VIP party, according to Van Dyck.

“The Community Ag Alliance has really supported us as being a liaison to understand the ranchers better, to have them hear us out, for us to hear them out and how can we all be better together,” Van Dyck said.

Advocacy work
In addition to monetary donations, SBT GRVL reports working on the behalf of local nonprofits in other ways.
Boys and Girls Club — SBT GRVL’s support of Boys and Girls Club includes year round education and participation in their programming. Amy and various other team members frequent the Boys and Girls Club to give talks on perseverance, motivation, and grit. We promote their initiatives through email and social, and work hard to showcase their efforts to our gravel community.
Community Agriculture Alliance — SBT GRVL promotes the alliance’s ranch dinners and uses its gravel digital platform to educate people on land preservation and water education, and emphasize the importance of sourcing food locally. SBT GRVL’s VIP dinner during race weekend is heavily sourced by CAA’s farms and ranches.
Routt County Riders — SBT GRVL promotes the riders’ endeavors and values via social and email, and participates in service trail days with the organization. SBT GRVL is supporting RCR’s Street Smarts initiative this year, working to educate local sixth graders on bike safety and teach fundamental skills to students who don’t know how to ride.
Source: SBT GRVL

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