News release: Carlton volunteer named 2023 ATV safety instructor of the year

July 8, 2024

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has named Eric Senarighi, of Carlton, as the 2023 ATV instructor of the year. He also won the award in 2021.

Senarighi is president of the Carlton County Riders ATV Club and works tirelessly to expand the sport while ensuring people have the knowledge they need to ride safely and in an ecologically sound way.

In addition to his work with the club, which trains about 100 kids per year in ATV safety, Senarighi founded a community group in Moose Lake to ensure a positive relationship between landowners and riders. As part of that effort, Senarighi was instrumental in getting a portion of a busy ATV trail moved to reduce noise and dust impacts on adjacent landowners.

“The fact Eric has won this award twice in three years speaks to his absolute dedication to promoting ATV riding and ensuring the next generation of riders has the skills they need to enjoy it safely and ethically,” said Bruce Lawrence, recreational vehicle coordinator for the DNR Enforcement Division. “He’s an excellent example of the very best of our volunteer instructors.”

In his time as a volunteer instructor, Senarighi also created a “Lids for Kids” program whereby each student who completes the Carlton County Riders ATV safety training course receives a new helmet. As part of the program, 265 students have received helmets. He also was instrumental in the creation of a memorial ATV ride called “Klick it for Kyle,” which reminds riders of the important of wearing helmets and seat belts and practicing safe riding behavior. The ride is in memory of Kyle Ringhoffer, who died in 2019 in an ATV accident. He also organizes an annual “Friendship Ride” where club members give ATV rides to disabled young adults.

Senarighi is among the nearly 1,000 volunteer ATV safety instructors who work with DNR conservation officers to deliver ATV safety training certification. Details about safety courses and training are available on the DNR website, as are ATV regulations.

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