North Tahoe SnowFest! turns to crowdfunding to fill $10,000 gap | SierraSun.com

North Tahoe SnowFest! turns to crowdfunding to fill $10,000 gap

Margaret Moran
mmoran@sierrasun.com

James "JC" Krise — who died at age 79 on Dec. 2, 2014 — served as SnowFest!'s Old Man Winter for more than two dozen years. Here, he's seen in the 2011 Tahoe City SnowFest! parade.

TAHOE CITY, Calif. — With less than a month until SnowFest!, officials are still seeking funding to help conduct the annual North Lake Tahoe winter festival.

On Tuesday, a crowdfunding campaign through CrowdRise launched with a goal of raising $10,000 by Feb. 27, the start of the eight-day festival.

As of Wednesday afternoon, $1,280 had been raised by seven backers.

"I'm positive the community will come up with the money," Ruth Schnabel, who's serving as executive director for SnowFest!, said Wednesday. "… I love this community. It's the best, and we always know we can rely on it if there's a need."

Those who donate certain amounts will be eligible for rewards, Schnabel said.

Funds raised through the campaign will go toward promoting the event; office expenses such as rent, phone and internet bills; and start-up funds for 2016 SnowFest!, which would be the 35th annual, she said.

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"Our goal of $10,000 will help this year's SnowFest! be a great success, and with the community backing, maybe better than ever and help continue on the legacy for the following years," the SnowFest! board of directors states on the crowdfunding site.

The 2015 event ran into financial trouble when one major sponsor cut its financial contribution and another decreased its amount, leaving a $12,500 shortfall in mid-December, according to a past report.

"We've raised some money through other resources," Schnabel said. "We're just trying to replace some of the funding we lost through sponsorships."

The festival was highly successful in the '80s and '90s and was famously featured in 1984 film, "Hot Dog … The Movie."

The 2015 festival, which again features events such as a polar bear swim, parades and eating challenges, will happen this year "without a doubt," Schnabel said.

SnowFest! is scheduled to take place Feb. 27 to March 8.

Visit tahoesnowfestival.com to learn more about SnowFest!, which was first held in 1982 based on Bob Everson's vision a year earlier.

How to donate

Visit crowdrise.com/savesnowfest to contribute to the crowdfunding campaign.

Write a check to SnowFest! and mail it to North Lake Tahoe SnowFest! PO Box 464, Tahoe City, CA 96145.

Drop a check or money donation off at the SnowFest! office at 531 North Lake Blvd., Suite B, in the Big Tree Center in Tahoe City.

Become a sponsor. Call SnowFest! at 530-583-7167 to learn more.