The Straddleline ORV Park, located east of McCleary, has received state funds to finally deal with the rocks that keep popping up along its tracks.
Although the ORV Park didn’t get the funds it wanted to do everything, given the state budget conditions, receiving any money at all is a bonus, the county commissioners noted last week in accepting the grant funds. There had been some talk among state officials this past spring that the ORV park may not qualify for any grants because the projects were ranked so low.
The ORV Park, operated by Promoto Promotions, received $276,160 to re-surface the main area course, purchase safety barriers, and improve the water supply and stormwater infrastructure. Promoto has already guaranteed $76,800 from in-kind labor as a match for the grant, including volunteer plumbing labor, two skilled equipment operators donating their time and 2,080 work crew hours.
The ORV Park also received a $79,000 grant to maintain various tracks, campgrounds, off-road trails and purchase a water truck to help fix trails and maintain the tracks. The grant requires a local match of $20,400 to get the funds, which Promoto has provided in the form of skilled and unskilled volunteer labor.
“Currently, the water truck being used at the park is more than 25 years old and is unreliable with the cost of repairs needed exceeding $6,000 in parts alone,” Promoto’s grant proposal states.
Promoto had also applied for other grants, including an elaborate 4x4 rock crawl area, but wasn’t awarded funds this time around.
The money comes from the state’s “non-highway and off-road vehicle activities program,” which gets its funding from the vehicle license tabs that off-road vehicle users pay.
The park straddles the county line between Thurston and Grays Harbor counties — hence the name Straddleline ORV Park — and is located on Highway 8.
The grant application says that Promoto will install fencing and barriers, install better lighting, and install stormwater and water systems. The grant calls for placing piping around the track to keep the dust down and ensure the dirt is in better condition.
“Currently, the watering system does not produce adequate water pressure for the track, nor is the track surface safe for users to ride because of the extremely rocky soils,” the grant application states. “On any given weekend during the summer months we see 300 number of users on the track and event weekends can see up to 600. It is the most heavily used facility at the park. This project also addresses a safety concern in the 4x4 area by installing spectator safety blocks that clearly identify where the viewing public should be located versus ORV users. The other parts of this grant will address lighting the main entrance sign to increase visibility and safety into the park as it can be difficult to find and also installing a culvert from the second retention pond to the third pond, which would eliminate the need for the county to pump rain water from one to the other and will result in $600 per month in fuel savings. The primary recreation opportunity this grant will provide is a safe, high quality motorized experience for motorcycle, jeep and quad riders.”
The improvements are slated to begin this fall.