In keeping with part of its mission the Black Fly Challenge ~ Adirondack Gravel Grinder reinvests race proceeds back into the local communities that make the race possible. Last year BFC announced donations and dedications to local organizations, projects and funds totaling more than $30,000.00 for 2016 and 2017.
Black Fly Challenge community reinvestment for 2018 will total more than $65,000.00 in new donations and dedications to local organizations, projects and funds for Indian Lake, Inlet and the surrounding communities:
A Local Trails Improvement Fund was created as part of the Black Fly Challenge mission is to promote, maintain and preserve local multi-use recreational trails and $20,000.00 was dedicated to establish that fund. In addition, $10,000.00 was dedicated to establish a Local Trails Sustainability Fund.
Black Fly Challenge has previously donated thousands of dollars for ham radio equipment to bolster the BFC radio network and improve race safety. The proposed Inlet Emergency Communications Tower will greatly improve safety not only for the race but for two counties, three towns and five hamlets. Accordingly, $10,000.00 has been dedicated to that project.
Last year the Indian Lake Projects Fund and Inlet Projects Fund were created and seeded with $5,000.00 each. These funds are for local recreational projects that may need financial assistance. For 2018, another $5,000.00 was dedicated to each fund. Currently there is a $10,000.00 balance for each fund.
Indian Lake Volunteer Fire Department received a $5,484.00 check on race day for feeding hungry BFC racers, spectators and volunteers. Likewise, Inlet Volunteer Emergency Services (IVES) will see a similar payment for doing the food at BFC 2019.
Traffic control and EMS are critical components of race safety. Indian Lake Ambulance, Inlet Ambulance, Blue Mountain Lake Ambulance and Inlet Volunteer Emergency Services were given a total of $4,400.00 for EMS and traffic control.
In June the inaugural Black Fly Scholarships were awarded, $500.00 each, to seniors from Indian Lake School and Town of Webb School (Sydney Benton and Emily Greene, respectively) and Indian Lake School awarded the first-ever Black Fly Award to one student (Kristina Oliver) based on the outstanding quality of her work. This $300.00 annual award is provided to Indian Lake School as thanks for the use of the school when the race ends in Indian Lake.
Other organizations receiving BFC support in 2018 include: Kiwanis of the Central Adirondacks ($1,500); Indian Lake Chamber of Commerce ($1,100); St. Mary’s Church of Indian Lake ($600); and HASCA ($1,000).
Not included in these donations and dedications is the Inlet Area Business Association, the parent organization of Black Fly Challenge. BFC picks up the tab for IABA’s insurance because a significant portion of the premium is related to the race.
Giving so much back to the community may seem impressive but it wouldn’t be possible without the outstanding contributions of the communities themselves. Race day staffing requires over 100 volunteers – and that doesn’t include the two fire departments, three ambulance corps and multiple police agencies involved!
Our communities take pride in putting on a great event for BFC racers and fans. In this season of giving, Black Fly Challenge is grateful for the opportunity to repay that dedication – and the tradition of giving back will continue.
The 24th annual Black Fly Challenge is Saturday June 8, 2019.