SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Tahoe Paradise Park is kicking off their summer fundraiser to fund new projects and improvements to stand as a regional bike path hub.
The new projects include permanent bathroom facilities, water fill station, bike racks, e-bike charging stations, benches, picnic tables, a guided scan-code nature walk, a children’s treasure hunt, tennis court repair and the installation of a permanent trash and recycle receptacle.
Tom Meyer and Jenn Quinn, both on the board for Tahoe Paradise Park and on the fundraising committee, are leading the fundraiser.
The board is looking for donations and is offering a “Court Banner Program” which offers donors the choice to advertise a company name or logo to be displayed at the tennis and pickleball courts from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Banners range from $500-1,000.
Paradise Park runs on annual expenses of roughly $110,000 which covers three part-time employees, insurance, equipment and materials to maintain and develop the park.
Measure S gives the park $50,000 annually and South Lake Tahoe Recreation Facilities Joint Powers Authority gives the park $10,000 leaving the park to come up with $50,000 annually. These funds are derived from donations, fundraising activities and volunteer efforts.
The new planned 2021 projects are an additional expense to the park’s annual costs.
With last summer’s influx of tourists, Meyer said they have seen increased crowd size at the park with more than half being tourists.
Since the park has been primarily operated with portable restrooms, the board is working to install permanent restroom facilities and improve the park for region-wide bicycle recreation.
As the bike path gets built the park will be a resting stop for riders to picnic, use the restroom, charge e-bikes and fill water bottles.
The park has numerous sponsors already including the Meyers Community Foundation, Lake Valley Fire Protection District, Off the Hook Sushi, Holiday Market and various other businesses.
“We are certainly looking for more [donors],” Meyer said. “The community is already showing generosity and strong support.”
The program launched about a week ago and they have already raised several thousand dollars for the new projects.
One of the projects, the guided nature walks, will be working in conjunction with a remote science class for the Lake Tahoe Environmental Science Magnet School. The nature walks will have scan-codes where students can scan and learn about the geology, flora and fauna of the area.
“It will be a nice classroom activity for next fall,” Meyer said.
The park will also be hosting a community fundraising event, “Return to Paradise” on June 5. Meyer said he expects to have several hundred people attend. There will be family-oriented activities, live music, park games including showcasing of the new disk golf course, park merchandise tables including a sponsor supported raffle.
They will also be launching their bench recognition program where 10 sites will host a memorial bench where people in the community can engrave the names of loved ones.
“The event is to get people to the park, have a great Saturday and kick off summer,” said Quinn.
While admission to the community event is free, donations are highly encouraged
“I feel like the community is really behind us, that is the way Tahoe works,” Meyer said. “We hope for support from regional interests including the City of SLT, El Dorado County, and organizations endowed with responsibility to bestow grant funding to worthwhile local projects.”
For more information, visit tahoeparadisepark.com or call 530-577-9881.