News Briefs

Skatepark Secures Land Lease

TRUCKEE

At the May 15 Tahoe Truckee Unified School District Board of Education meeting, trustees voted to allow a community skatepark constructed on district property. The decision means TTUSD staff will work with Tahoe City Public Utility District to change the use of the existing dog park located at 211 Grove St. in Tahoe City to the skatepark, which will ultimately be managed by the Scotty Lapp Foundation.

“The unanimous decision by the TTUSD board to give the Scotty Lapp Foundation a path forward was a huge step in the over 2-year process of looking for a home for a permanent skatepark in Tahoe City,” said Amy Lapp, co-founder of the foundation. “This means so much more than just building a skatepark; this is showing the youth of North Tahoe that the district sees and cares for them and their needs.”

Lapp also said she was humbled to see the boardroom overflowing with people to support their cause. 

The foundation was created in honor of Lapp’s son, Scotty, who died in a ski accident when he was 16 years old. A 4,000-square-foot temporary skatepark, located behind the old Blue Agave in Tahoe City, is now in its third summer and will most likely be gone by the end of the year.

~ TC

Public Input on Home Kitchen Ordinance Sought 

NEVADA CITY

The Nevada County Board of Supervisors is considering adopting an ordinance that would  allow residents to operate restaurants or sell meals out of their homes. 

Called microenterprise home kitchens, the small businesses would have to prepare and serve  meals the same day and could serve up to 90 meals per week. They would not be subject to  unannounced health inspections like traditional restaurants; all inspections would be by  appointment, and they would not be required to remodel their home kitchen to commercial  kitchen standards/requirements. The county does not currently allow these businesses. 

On May 14, the board accepted a $50,098.51 state grant to solicit public feedback about the proposed ordinance. The Environmental Health Department is planning to hold meetings with restaurant owners and other interested residents, as well as conduct a survey on whether the public wants to allow microenterprise home kitchens. Interested residents can sign up to be notified of meeting or survey opportunities at nevadacountyca.gov/homekitchens.  

The pros of allowing microenterprise home kitchens are that individuals could start their own  businesses with little to no overhead expenditures and potentially make up to $100,000 a year.  Currently, there are approximately 50 such businesses operating illegally in the county, and this  could provide a way for them to become legal. The cons are the possibility of an increase in  foodborne illnesses if foods are not prepared correctly. 

Since the state opened the door in 2019 for local jurisdictions to allow such businesses, nine  local government entities have adopted ordinances allowing them, including Berkeley, Alameda,  and San Mateo. 

Supervisors will consider public feedback before making a decision sometime in 2025 about  whether to go forward with an ordinance. 

~ Nevada County press release

Defensible Space and Chipping Services Available

NORTH LAKE TAHOE

Prepare for wildfire season and sign up for defensible space evaluations and curbside chipping services. For more information and to register online, visit nltfpd.org.

For curbside yard debris collection dates and information, visit yourtahoeplace.com/events/yard-waste-collection.

Allow 2 weeks for responses to defensible space evaluation requests. Chipping requests are taken as they are received and completed as crews are available. Keep in mind they respond to wildfires and may not be able to get to chipping piles right away. Provide all requested information in the online form. 

Taking every precaution to protect homes from wildfire by getting a defensible space evaluation. The fire district can issue free tree removal permits for fire hazard trees, but removal must accompany complete defensible space treatments.

~ North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District press release

Plaque Commemorates Chinatowns

TRUCKEE

On Friday, May 10, a crowd gathered at Truckee’s Old Jail  Museum to witness the dedication and unveiling of a plaque commemorating one of Nevada County’s newest landmarks. Truckee’s Chinatowns were declared a county historical landmark by the Nevada County Board of Supervisors last June at the recommendation of the Nevada County Historical Landmarks Commission. May 10 was the 155th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, instrumental in the development of Truckee and its Chinatowns.  

The principal speakers were Supervisor District 5 Hardy Bullock, Truckee Councilmember Courtney Henderson, and Alyce Wong, Chair of the Tahoe Forest Hospital District Board of Directors, who spoke about the history of the Chinese experience in Truckee. Truckee Donner Historical Society President Greg Zirbel and member Heidi Sprout unveiled the plaque and read its text.

CHINATOWN: A new plaque honoring Truckee’s former Chinatowns was unveiled at the Old Jail Museum on May 10. Courtesy photo

This plaque will be featured in the commission’s interactive map at nevadacountylandmarks.com and in the next edition of its book, Exploring Nevada County, a guide to all the county’s historical landmarks.

~ Nevada County Historical Landmarks Commission press release

Fuel Reduction Projects to Enhance Forest Health

TRUCKEE

This summer, residents and visitors to the Truckee region of the Tahoe National Forest can expect to see fuels reduction work in various locations. Planned treatments include mechanical thinning, mastication, hand thinning, and prescribed fire. This work will protect crucial water supplies for the Reno metropolitan area, reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire in the Sierraville and Truckee regions, protect thousands of nearby recreation areas, residences, and businesses, and enhance overall forest health.

These projects are being collaboratively undertaken through the Middle Truckee River Watershed Forest Partnership, composed of Truckee River Watershed Council, Truckee Meadows Water Authority, The Nature Conservancy, National Forest Foundation, and Tahoe National Forest.

Upcoming project areas include:

  • Tahoe National Forest Roadside Fuel Breaks: Tahoe National Forest fire and fuels personnel will conduct prescribed burns along various Forest Service roads near Sierraville and Truckee.
  • Ladybug Project: The 2,200-acre Ladybug Project footprint extends from just north of Boca Reservoir and east of Stampede Reservoir along the western slope of the Verdi Range. Planned treatments include forest thinning, mastication, and prescribed burning.
  • Cabin Creek Project: Project will result in some recreation closures to popular mountain biking trails. This project is expected to take 3 years and is the first phase of the Tahoe National Forest’s 6,000-acre Five Creeks Project. Planned treatments include forest thinning, meadow restoration, aspen enhancement, mastication, and prescribed burning.
  • Alder 89 WUI Project: This project is located along Highway 89, north of Truckee, Alder Creek Road directly adjacent to the Tahoe Donner subdivision and west toward Prosser reservoir and Hobart Mills. The project is expected to be completed within 3 to 4 years.
  • Big Jack Targeted Grazing: Targeted grazing will occur in the area surrounding the Sawtooth Trailhead above the Sierra Meadows neighborhood in Truckee. This project will accomplish 60 acres of critical fuels reduction. Residents and recreationists near the trailhead can expect to see goats, livestock protection dogs, and electric fencing.

Over the next 10 years, the Middle Truckee River Watershed Forest Partnership will work to restore over 60,000 acres of Truckee-area forests. Learn more about the partnership and upcoming projects at truckeeforests.org.

~ U.S. Department of Agriculture press release

Emergency Alert System Launches

KINGS BEACH

In collaboration with surrounding cities and counties, Placer County announced the launch of TahoeAlerts, an emergency notification system locator.

Using GPS technology, TahoeAlerts simplifies emergency notification registration for residents and visitors throughout the Tahoe region. Online visitors can simply log on to tahoealerts.com, and enter their address or location to locate the emergency notification system in their immediate area.

This one-stop resource for the various emergency alert systems is available in different regions, encompassing Placer, El Dorado, Nevada, Douglas, Alpine, and Washoe counties, as well as Truckee, Carson City, and South Lake Tahoe.

“With so many jurisdictions around Lake Tahoe, it can be difficult for the community to know which government entity is responsible for sending emergency alerts in their area, and where to go to sign up for those alerts,” said El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Troy Morton. “This is an extremely beneficial tool the public can use to easily obtain that information.”

Sign up for emergency alerts throughout the Lake Tahoe region at tahoealerts.com

~ Placer County press release

Coalition Confident Voters will Reject Vacancy Tax

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE

A coalition of South Lake Tahoe residents, small businesses, and taxpayers announced the formation of a campaign to defeat the proposed vacancy tax in South Tahoe, saying they’re confident voters will reject the measure once they get the facts about the proposal. According to the El Dorado County Registrar of Voters, the measure has been certified to have received sufficient signatures to qualify for the November 2024 election.

“We’ve assembled a strong local coalition of residents, local small businesses, and taxpayers who will defeat this horribly flawed, divisive, and unaccountable measure masquerading as an affordable housing proposal,” said Steve Teshara, co-chair of Stop the South Tahoe Vacancy Tax. “When voters hear the truth about this measure, we have no doubt they’ll vote no!”

“After all the promises from the backers of this measure, voters will be shocked to hear that nothing in this measure requires the city to produce a single new unit of affordable housing, or even to spend a single penny on housing affordability at all,” added Sharon Kerrigan, co-chair of the campaign. “We all want to address housing affordability in South Tahoe, but this measure is not the answer, and will likely make things worse.”

Teshara and Kerrigan point out that while proponents of the measure promised residents that this measure would solve housing affordability when they were collecting signatures, the truth is that nothing in the measure requires the city to produce affordable housing or spend tax on housing programs.

“The first call of dollars on this measure is not housing, but on the legal defense of the measure and the massive bureaucracy the city will have to set up to enforce and administer the tax,” Kerrigan said. “It is literally a tax that will pay for the administration of the tax.”

The campaign leaders said the divisive nature of these and other proposals from the vacancy tax backers had united the community like never before to promote South Tahoe values. They said their campaign website will be launched soon at stopthesouthtahoevacancytax.com

~ Stop the South Tahoe Vacancy Tax press release

New Bear Display Raises Over $100,000

TAHOE CITY

Twenty-five new engraved bears are now hanging from the railings in Tahoe City’s Heritage Plaza through a partnership with the Tahoe Fund, Placer County, and the Tahoe City Public Utility District to raise money for trails in North Lake Tahoe. Since launching the new program this fall, more than $100,000 has been raised for trails through the generosity of private donors. 

The engraved bears, originally available along the popular Tahoe East Shore Trail, have been embraced by those who want a way to memorialize their investment and commitment to improving the Tahoe environment. Bears were chosen for this location to celebrate the proximity to the iconic Penny Bear statue in Heritage Plaza.

The bear plaques are available in two sizes. For $5,000, the mama bear plaque measures 13 inches tall and 20 inches wide and has space for a 40- to 45-character message. For $2,500, the baby bear plaque measures 8 inches tall and 12 inches wide and has space for a 20- to 25-character message. 

For more information and to purchase a Tahoe City bear plaque, visit tahoefund.org/projects/active-projects/tahoe-city-bear-plaques.

The Tahoe Fund also offers engraved trout plaques and bear pavers along the East Shore Trail, a 3-mile paved path from Incline Village to Sand Harbor. To learn more, visit tahoefund.org/projects/active-projects/tahoe-east-shore-trail.

~ Tahoe Fund press release

New Children’s Book About Lake Tahoe Released

LAKE TAHOE

Kevin Sullivan, author and part-time resident of Incline Village, released his newest children’s book, Tahoe 123. It is the companion book to Good Night Tahoe, a book about the Reno/Carson City/Tahoe region’s places, animals, and activities. In this new adventure, Beary and his friend, Cheeky, count some of the wonderful sights and experiences of Tahoe.

Sullivan is a writer and educator. He has written several Hawaii-themed books for young readers and is passionate about raising awareness about protecting the environment, particularly the Lake Tahoe Basin and its flora and fauna. He has many fond memories of Tahoe ski trips and rafting the Truckee River with his family.

Michael Furuya, the book’s illustrator, is an accomplished fine artist and graduate of the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. He is passionate about environmental education. He was part of ‘Ohi’a Productions, which produced plays and a series of award-winning picture books for the children of Hawaii.

Upcoming book readings and signing events:

  • Wednesday, May 29, from 1 to 2 p.m. at Donner Memorial State Park Visitor Center
  • Friday, May 31, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at Sand Harbor State Park

~ Kevin Sullivan press release

Event to Feature Wá∙šiw (Washoe) Voices

TRUCKEE

The Truckee Chamber of Commerce announced a special 2-hour edition of Good Morning Truckee scheduled for Tuesday, June 18, honoring the Wá∙šiw, who will be sharing Wá∙šiw history and providing updates to the community.

The chamber is honored to welcome three esteemed members of the Washoe (Wá∙šiw) Tribe: Tribal Council Chairman Serrell Smokey; Dr. Lisa Grayshield, executive director of the Washiw Zulshish Gum T’anu (WZGT); and Darrel Cruz, retired tribal historic preservation officer for the tribe. Speakers will share insights into Washoe (Wá∙šiw) history and ongoing landback efforts across the Truckee-Tahoe Basin.

The program starts at 8 a.m. and will run until 10, allowing speakers extra time to share their stories and fostering open conversation.

Good Morning Truckee is a community forum providing timely, relevant information on various topics. Open to the public, this event is held the third Tuesday of every month at Truckee Town Hall from 7:45 to 10 a.m. Attendees can join in person or watch a recorded version. Ticket prices are $15 for the general public and $10 for Truckee Chamber members, which includes a continental breakfast, coffee donated by Mountain Brew, and a chance to win a door prize by bringing a business card.

~ Truckee Chamber of Commerce press release

Provide Feedback About North Tahoe Projects 

TAHOE CITY

Placer County is inviting the community to Discover and Discuss: Projects and Programs Shaping the Future of North Lake Tahoe on Thursday, May 30, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the North Tahoe Event Center in Kings Beach. 

County staff and community partners will present at this open-house style event which provides an opportunity for the public to learn more and provide feedback about impactful projects and programs in the region aimed at supporting a healthy and vibrant community.

Attendees can talk to regional experts about upcoming infrastructure projects, like Tahoe City’s Mobility Project or the Tahoe Basin Area Plan, policy and program updates to enhance workforce housing opportunities, like the Workforce Housing Preservation Program, emergency planning efforts to prepare for wildfire, and more.

“This is the first of more planned events to provide new and important information to our community and really get residents involved,” said Placer’s Deputy County Executive Officer Stephanie Holloway.

Sierra Community House will provide Spanish interpretation as well as children’s activities to ensure families can attend. Food and beverages will be provided. Registration is not required, and attendees are welcome to come at any point throughout the evening.

Find more information here.

~ Placer County press release

Dance Festival Returns

NORTH LAKE TAHOE

The 12th Annual Lake Tahoe Dance Festival, taking place July 23 through 26, kicks off with an opening night gala in Tahoe City, followed by Tahoe City Community Night, Kings Beach Community Night, and concluding in a closing night gala in Incline Village, featuring new commissions and performances from artists from New York City Ballet, Broadway, L.A. Dance Project, Boston Ballet, and more. For more information and ticketing, visit laketahoedancecollective.org/laketahoedancefestival.

The Lake Tahoe Dance Festival was started by longtime friends Christin Hanna and Constantine Baecher in 2013 to present the finest professional dance and dance instruction in North Lake Tahoe. As the festival enters its second decade, Lake Tahoe Dance continues to commission new works and present rarely-seen classics alongside fan favorites danced by high-caliber artists.

Performances featured at the festival include an excerpt of Erick Hawkins Dance Company’s Greek Dreams Nymph Solo, first performed at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York in 1973, with dancer Kristina Berger wearing the original costume on loan from the Library of Congress; a new commission from Daniel Baudendistel and Valerie Madonia, performed by Ethan Price and Kate Loxtercamp; an excerpt of Susan Stroman’s Contact, performed by Stephen Hanna Ashley Fitzgerald; an excerpt of William Foresyth’s Blake Works, performed by Lia Cirio and Paul Craig; Needle & Thread (working title), a new commission choreographed and performed by Daphne Fernberger; and a new commission from Maxfield Haines and Dwight Rhoden that explores identity and selfhood.

~ Lake Tahoe Dance Collective press release

Experience 3D Reconstruction of Asian American Site

TRUCKEE

The Library of Congress has launched a series of virtual installations at the campus in Washington, D.C. and five historic Asian American sites around the country, including Truckee.  

Using a cell phone, the public can go through “hidden portals” to experience an immersive 3D reconstruction of these neighborhoods, developed with the help of archival photos and records from local and library collections. Jeffrey Yoo Warren, library’s innovator in residence, was able to reconstruct some of these forgotten Asian communities using the library’s collections. The public can view this work using portals that are similar to virtual reality. During Asian Pacific American Heritage Month from May 1 through 31, members of the public can follow maps to experience the five Hidden Portal sites around the U.S.

The five communities featured in Hidden Portals were selected because of their historic significance, as they witnessed how Chinese American and Korean American communities once thrived. They include: Providence, Rhode Island; Portland, Oregon; Hanford, California; Riverside, California; and Truckee, at Donner Pass Road and Spring Street.

Learn more and access the portals at libraryofcongress.github.io/seeing-lost-enclaves/portals

~ Library of Congress press release

Events Scheduled to Celebrate 20 Years of Art Hikes

NORTH LAKE TAHOE

Trails & Vistas is celebrating 20 years of Art Hikes that blend art experiences with being immersed in nature. Upcoming events will feature award-winning musicians, dancers, and installation artists working with this year’s theme, Elements. This is an invitation to unplug and create sensory experiences within nature. The Art Hikes start at the Summit Station of Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort and walk along a 2.7-mile single track moderate rated hiking trail through meadows and pine forests. 

Some upcoming events include:

  • Art Hikes, July 27 and 28: Visual and performance art accompany a 2- to 3-mile walking trail in the Sierra Nevada region. Participants select guided small group hikes. Art Hikes will be hosted by Royal Gorge/Truckee Donner Land Trust. 
  • Art in Nature student field trips, The Dreaming Tree, in September feature an interactive art hike along a nature trail showcasing professional musicians, storytelling, team building, visual art, and environmental studies designed for third grade students. The event will take place at Donner Memorial State Park and Sand Harbor State Park. 
  • World Concert, Aug. 7: Music in the Park will feature world music and dance at the Truckee Regional Park with music by SambaDa’ and Tsurunokai Taiko Drummers in celebration of Trails & Vistas’ 20th year.
  • Arte e Vistas: Trails & Vistas, along with Sunshine Tahoe and Christina Stoever Young, is supporting an invitation to create an international artist residency and castle art and architecture tour on Aug. 31 in Northern Italy.

Learn more about these and other events at trailsandvistas.org

~ Trails & Vistas press releases

Moving In, Moving On, Moving Up

NTBA Executive Director Terminated

KINGS BEACH

The North Tahoe Business Association Board of Directors announced that it has made the decision to terminate its executive director, Alyssa Reilly, for failing to follow the bylaws, policies, and procedures of the organization.

Through NTBA’s volunteer board’s review of financial statements and in communication with vendors the NTBA had contracted with, it came to attention that the organization’s bylaws, policies, and procedures were not being followed. The NTBA board took immediate action to launch an official investigation, involved the appropriate authorities, and is evaluating next steps for the organization.

The board is actively evaluating how to best support the North Tahoe business community and ensure planned events, like Music On the Beach, occur as planned this summer.

Updates will continue to be shared.

~ NTBA press release

Business Briefs

New Music Festival to Feature Sublime

TRUCKEE

Soaring Seven, an experiential company founded in Truckee, announced the first Truckee Music Fest in partnership with Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District. On Aug. 9 and 10, several artists will take the stage at the Riverview Sports Park. 

Friday night features multi-platinum singer/songwriter Kip Moore; Charles Kelley, founding member of country band Lady A; and A Thousand Horses, an American country music band.  

Saturday night’s headliner features Sublime, with Jakob Nowell, son of Sublime founder Bradley Nowell, as front man. He will be playing alongside his father’s original bandmates, Bud Gaugh and Eric Wilson.  

“We are thrilled to be chosen as one of the few stages in 2024 that will feature Sublime,” said Stacey Larson, managing partner at Soaring Seven.

Saturday night also features Makua Rothman, world champion surfer and musician who brings the rhythmic island grooves of his native land, Hawaii; and G Love & Special Sauce. 

Tickets are available at truckeemusicfest.com, with several ticketing tiers available, including a pricing package for locals. Attendees are encouraged to ride bikes to the event. Those who do can take advantage of the free bike valet and will receive a $5 food/beverage incentive each day. Parking info is available on the website.

Doors open at 4 p.m. In addition to the festival, the event will have a food and spirit’s pavilion featuring specialty foods, shopping, and community outreach from local businesses.

~ Soaring Seven press release