MSTA Vision Statement

Revised January 29, 2005
"Why do large numbers of hikers venture into the wet, wild woods with biting insects and stinging nettles, on trails lined with roots and studded with rocks? There is something different and deeply appealing about hiking in the out-of-doors. The wilder and more beautiful the land, the better the hiking. Clearly, these experiences are spiritual. It is the deep, but bright, secret of hiking. Spiritual experience is essential to our well being, so hiking remains popular.''

--- Tom Thwaites

Today's urban society disconnects us from nature. Glass, steel, asphalt, concrete; they all distance us from nature. All too easily we cling to the false hope that we have mastered nature, rather than standing in respect and stewardship of all things within nature, around us. Restoring our connection to nature, actually our place within nature, requires of us that we get back to nature, removing all those obstacles put between us and nature by our urban society.

Primitive nature experiences restore one's sense of inner peace and strengthen one's soul. Foot travel over a remote primitive trail brings an exhilaration, an aliveness that cleanses us of our worldly woes and restores our spirit.

The Mid State Trail was created to foster these simple, natural, spiritual experiences, so that we may all enjoy a greater respect for nature and therefore protect nature for all future generations. The foot path's length offers an extended unity with nature to long-distance walkers.

The Mid State Trail Association seeks out remote, quiet natural corridors for placing the Mid State Trail, constructs and maintains only foot paths, and acts to protect the quiet, wild and scenic, natural and cultural resources of the corridor through which the trail passes. Within a natural setting, hikers enjoy a diversity of experiences. We recognize the importance of those areas with significant historic, cultural, geological, or other features of interest to hikers, and work to have the foot path visit those features, where feasible. At times, sections of the foot path may be, unnecessarily, in non-natural areas or on non-natural surfaces. Our goal is to re-locate these sections to remote, primitive natural places.


Adopted September 30, 1984 Revised January 29, 2005

Article 1 Name

The name of this organization shall be the Mid State Trail Association.

Article 2 Purpose

The purpose of this organization shall be the completion and preservation of the Mid State Hiking Trail System. To this end the MSTA will:

  1. supervise, coordinate, and carry out trail work
  2. ensure that maps and guides are available to the general public
  3. enter into agreements, including purchase of easements and property, with private landowners and public land managers to provide for the trail.
  4. Take such other actions as may be appropriate to further the purpose of the organization.

Article 3 Members

The MSTA shall have two classes of members.

  1. Individual: a person shall be accepted as an individual member upon payment of the annual dues fixed by the association for individuals.
  2. Organizational: an organization shall be accepted as an organizational member upon payment of the annual dues fixed by the association for organizations.

Article 4 Officers

Officers of the Mid State Trail association shall be a president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer, who shall be elected for a term of two years at the annual membership meeting. The officers shall constitute a Board of Trustees to transact affairs of the association calling for action between membership meetings. For the purposes of elections, the annual meeting shall be the first one held in each calendar year. The offices of secretary and treasurer may be combined. The board may approve the creation of other officers. The duties of the officers shall be those usually pertaining to those offices. The signatures of the President and Secretary are required for any legal documents.

Article 5 Regional Managers.

Regional Managers are appointed by the Board, and serve until they resign or are removed by written notice from the President. Regional Managers are responsible for the condition of their sections, the leadership of any special trail crews on their sections, and the actions of their maintainers/ overseers. Regional Managers will distribute written instructions for their maintainers, and a clear understanding of the boundaries of the maintenance assignment. Regional Managers will interact with government agencies or any private landowners in questions of trail location, trail condition, and special additions (such as bridges) on their sections. Regional Managers will ensure that up-to-date maps and trail guides are provided to the association officer charged with publication. Regional Managers will maintain computer records of their maintainers and provide such records to the association officers on request. Regional Managers will make timely reports to council, and will provide summary statistics of annual work to council and Keystone Trails Association (KTA) on request.

Article 6 Meetings

There shall be at least one membership meeting each year at a time and place set by the Board. A minimum of seven members shall constitute a quorum for the conduct of business. Organizational members are entitled to one voting representative.

Article 7 Committees

Any committee authorized by the members of the association shall be appointed by the president.

Article 8 Property

The president or a person appointed by the president shall be custodian of all properties other than money.

Article 9 Dissolution

In the event of the dissolution of this association, the property of the association shall be conveyed to the Keystone Trails Association or a similar organization at the discretion of the Board. The Penn State Outing Club shall have right of first refusal for maintaining the Mid State Trail System and producing maps and guides.

Article 10 Parliamentary Authority

The current edition of Robert's Rules of Order shall be followed by the association for all matters not contained in these bylaws.

Article 11 Amendments

These bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds majority of members present at a general membership meeting, providing, that the substance of the changes has been published in the MSTA newsletter at least thirty (30) days prior to the meeting.

Article 12 Donations to the MSTA

The MSTA may accept donations which further the purposes of the association. Donations earmarked for corridor preservation or for capital improvements shall be spent only for those purposes. The treasurer or his/her designee shall track these funds and report to the membership.

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