WOODBINE, N.J. – A state-owned ATV park that opened in January has drawn only a handful of riders, and a businessman who just won approval for a second facility says park rules are the reason.
Winter weather and weekend operating hours may account for just a few dozen riders using the park since the Jan. 13 opening, according to the Department of Environmental Protection, the state organization that runs the park.
Clay Keeler, manager for the just-approved New Jersey Motorsports Park’s Field of Dreams Motocross facility in Millville, says strict regulations keep riders away. The park allows ATVs, dirt bikes and snowmobiles only. Vehicles must have front and taillights and be properly insured by the riders. Riders must be at least 14 years old and must wear protective helmets, goggles, boots, wristguards and kneepads. The Woodbine park limits riders between 14 and 16 years of age to ATVs with 90cc or smaller engines.
“Usually 7-year-olds are riding something that size,” Keeler told the Bridgeton News. Restrictions on age, vehicle type and size and registration requirements are the barriers to greater use, he said.
“It narrows down the riding field to probably 5 percent of all off-road vehicles that could use that facility,” he said. Rider vehicles will not have to be registered or insured to use Field of Dreams, he said. He also plans to come up with lower age restrictions.
“As long as they can ride a pee wee bike, the kids, they can ride on our track and that usually begins at 3-and-a-half years old,” he said. “I guess the only restriction we’ll have is they have to be able to ride on their own.”
Keeler hopes to start construction in June and have the facility open by October. He may also submit a proposal in response to the state’s request for someone to manage the Woodbine park.
Posted by Holly Wagner