The Linneus Maine snowmobile club is needing to update their groomer and all local businesses in Maine need to lend their support when this grand writing effort requires a helping hand. This is an open letter of what we think of the grant money being awarded. Here’s the letter….

     Thank you for bringing to my attention the desire of the Linneus Sno-Sports, Inc. to apply for a USDA grant to aid in the purchase of a new trail grooming machine and the associated equipment needed to make safe, flat and enjoyable trails for all to enjoy.

I have been told the average snowsledder spends at least $100 per day in the area they are snowsledding through. I think this number is probably conservative because by the time you fuel up with today’s prices, stay somewhere at a lodge or a motel, eat and entertain yourself, I would put the figure closer to $150 on average.

In addition to those new dollars that turn over six times in the local economy, we are exposing Maine to snowsledders who might decide to locate a business, a factory or a distribution facility here. I have heard over and over in my job, from folks who have snowsledded through, how friendly the people are, how nice it is not to have a million people, and the ones that are here are friendly and helpful. That’s the kind of location a future business owner is going to want to locate. Add in the work ethic from everybody picking potatoes and making money on the local farms growing up, this is an area ripe for economic development. Snowsledding is economic development, from the exposure it gives to folks vacationing through and for those who come back numerous times a year, year after year.

I think the use of a USDA grant to purchase a snow grooming machine to make the trails not only safe, but to attract more snowsledders to the area is a great use of taxpayer dollars. In this day in age where we hear about abuses and waste of government spending, this definitely is one that hits home. The volunteers at the Linneus-Sno Sports and other sled clubs around the state, work long hours for no pay … only for personal satisfaction. Whether they are twitching new trails, taking out dangerous sharp curves or building new bridges, there is nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer snowsledder.

I have seen the trails first hand, have four snowsleds, and we use them a lot in our job to show property and to access land. You can get places on a snowsled that you cannot get to by car and the view and wildlife is what people are after. This new groomer will make those trails accessible, safer and help bring in dollars during a slow time in the economy … the dead of winter. Local restaurants, local motels, gas stations, new and used snowsled sales and parts sales will all benefit from this tourism! We’ve got the trails, we just have to make them safer and flat so folks will come back and tell all of their friends what a great time they had in the greater Houlton area.

Respectfully submitted,
Andrew F. Mooers
69 North Street
Houlton, ME 04730
207.532.6573 – Voice
207.532.6574 – Fax
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P.S.  This will specifically help my business and keep our revenues generated from folks looking for recreational land.  We meet them because of their passion for snowsledding, but they decide to come back for the other three seasons and spend money.  If they buy property, they build on the land.  They drill wells.  They put septics and power in.  Those are all dollars that turn over six times that we did not have in the local economy before.